Hyphen TV: Gangnam Style Grandma

May 21, 2013

Judith really feels the music

So You Think You Can Dance
returned last week, though we didn't get to meet any Asian American
contestants in the first two episodes...we did, however, encounter one
Detroit auditioner's grandma who was adorably
happy and was described thusly by her granddaughter: "Everywhere we go,
she's the most popular person." Grandma enthusiastically hugged Cat
Deeley, then got up and laid down a little Gangnam Style with the
judges. Check out some of her cute moves here.

And I can't
forget to mention that season 8's Marko Germar is back along with
Sasha, as the audition round choreographers. Hi, Marko!

continued to be amazing on The Voice; this time taking on Carole King's
"You've Got a Friend" while accompanying herself on piano. We learned
that being of both black and Japanese descent made Judith never feel
accepted into any specific group, so she ate lunch alone and cried a lot
when she was younger. Look at you now, though, girl! She continued
rocking her crazy looks during this performance with a complicated
necklace/harness thing and cape. Love her.

Okay you can't see either accessory here, but trust me.

Blake called the
song "beautiful, powerful, everything we've come to expect from Judith
Hill week after week." Usher told Judith, "You are totally in control of
your own destiny at this point." Adam said that her ability to sing
and play piano the way she did "is a gift and a talent that cannot be
taught, and to do it with such ease and so much grace makes you perhaps
the most talented human being in this competition." Judith was, of
course, voted into safety.

The ladies were shaking things
up on The Big Brain Theory this week, with Alison and Amy winning the
blueprint challenge and becoming the leaders of their (male) teams.
Alison was especially excited for the chance to lead, explaining, "As a
woman [in engineering], I really hope to get rid of any stereotypes."
The task this time around was to create a system that could be deployed
by one person and that would protect them from extreme wind,
fire, and water conditions.

Alison's runner-up idea, a sort of
turtle shell design, was called "extremely creative" by the judges.
However, she wanted everyone on her team to "feel empowered and
impassioned," so she gave everyone a chance to pitch their ideas. This
technique didn't go well with teammate Tom, who described the situation
as "headstrong teammates, less than [a] headstrong leader." After a very
long discussion period, they ended up going with a combination of
Alison's and Tom's ideas, coming up with a metal structure that the
person would hang from, protected by outer layers of heat and
water-resistant material.

When the judges visited the
workrooms, Tom did most of the explaining, leading the judges to ask if
Tom was the leader. "Just because he's a loud voice doesn't mean he's in
charge," Alison interviewed, but we didn't hear her correct the judges
in any way. Later, the judges observed that Alison was more of a
facilitator than a leader.

Late materials and slow
building left Alison to do all the material
patterning and sewing on the last day, a move that made her nervous.
Meanwhile, teammate Andrew developed the idea to use an inflatable raft
on the floor of the structure to stabilize it, and at competition, he figured out how to fill the raft quickly with carbon dioxide. We also got to learn that
Andrew grew up training in tae kwon do, and competed in the Junior
Olympics. Pretty impressive!

In the end, the structure withstood the
giant wind machine, but caught on fire. It was knocked over by the water hose, but so was the other
team's. The judges realized that the stabilizing raft was melted by the
fire, which burned even more because of the carbon dioxide. Wuh-oh!

By the way, Big
Brain Facts about Alison courtesy of a commercial break tidbit: she moonlights as a comic and storyboard
artist, and as a senior at MIT, she wrote and illustrated a graphic
novel about a group of engineering students. Neat! 

Back at the challenge, the judges declared
Alison's team the losers because they were not able to withstand two of
the three elements, while the other team only fell to the water. When
asked, her teammates called Alison the weakest link, and in the end the
judges agreed and sent her packing. However, she'll be sticking
around and will have a chance to return to the competition as a wildcard
contestant. Maybe a little time to reflect on leadership styles will
help her win her place back?


Dianne Choie


Dianne Choie's TV is in Brooklyn, NY. She has a cat, several reusable shopping bags, and other mildly annoying stereotypes of youngish people who live in Brooklyn.