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#5551

Law Mom

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Posted Feb 5, 2013 @ 1:51 PM

[snip] I agree, this episode was the worst. On paper it looked like all the rest: pyramid, whining, solo issues, momcrap, last minute choreography, child emotional abuse, competition, rivals, blowup. But there was something different this time. Chloe’s face during rehearsals haunts me. I think all along I kept thinking that the series will eventually end on a more uplifting note, that everyone will grow and be happy. Now I finally realize that the abuse is only getting worse and it will never stop. The optimist in me has been silenced.

As for what’s real and what’s fake (and stop here if I told this story before, sorry), a friend took her kids to a workshop with Abby Lee and the girls that was a fundraiser for Sandy victims. She said that Abby was nicer than on the show but her hatred for Christi and Kelly was real.

One last thing. One of Abby’s favorite insults is when a dancer (or mom) fails to put Abby’s demands first is that they are happy being “mediocre.” Yet Abby is the poster child for mediocrity. She barely makes ends meet in run-of-the-mill studio in a cinder block building located on the outskirts of an average city. Yes, she has a few great young dancers that got that way through sheer number of hours of practice, not that she’s got any kind of ninja teaching skills (if she did, she wouldn’t keep blaming Nia and Paige for their flaws). I am seeing more and more girls like Maddie these days; every studio seems to have one or two now. And like I’ve said before, by the time they hit the senior age group, there are lots of girls who are great. So if Abby wants to not be mediocre, perhaps she should examine her own house.

Edited by TWoP Howard, Feb 5, 2013 @ 4:06 PM.
Save the sarcasm for the show—don't aim it at another poster

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#5552

dyanad

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Posted Feb 5, 2013 @ 4:21 PM

Automessage, Just looked at the video you posted of what happened with the watermelon game and it doesn't match up. First we see the kids in the pool wrestling for the watermelon, then it's floating in the pool near Maddy, Abby calls out to Maddy to get it and she grabs hold and starts swimming towards the shallow end. Cut to Abby and Melissa yelling for her to get it out, then you see all the kids dogpile and Maddy loses the melon and float away to the side crying.

So yes, Maddy overreacted when she lost the melon, got upset and claimed she was injured (valid injury or not is up for debate)
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#5553

Law Mom

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Posted Feb 5, 2013 @ 5:16 PM

TWoP Howard, my comment that "someone needs to take a class in child development" was aimed at Abby Lee, not another poster. It was not sarcastic at all. The fact is part of Abby's problem is that she does not know how a child's brain works. How they learn, how they think. She has unreasonable expectations. She thinks you can tell a ten year old to do something once or twice and they will do it perfectly every time after that. Everyone who has kids knows sometimes you have to tell them a hundred times.
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#5554

becw182

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Posted Feb 5, 2013 @ 7:14 PM

What was the first show Maddie was on?


Her and Brooke auditioned for Paula Abduls Live to Dance
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#5555

Mischievious

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Posted Feb 5, 2013 @ 9:15 PM

Abby will be on Bravo's Whatch What Happens Live tonight at 10 CST
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#5556

GrrlPower

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Posted Feb 5, 2013 @ 10:24 PM

Well guess what: After Maddie briefly follows Abby's orders, she goes back to trying to avoid the game once again, but in a little more obvious way (=crying)... and it seems she needed to be more obvious, because everyone just completely ignored her desire to quit the first time when she didn't use crying as a tactic, and Abby had loudly demanded she re-enter the game.



I think that was the point people are making - Maddie wasn't crying because she was hurt. She wasn't winning, she's a small girl and couldn't swim with that huge watermelon, and her opponents were all bigger/faster than her. To get out of a game that she couldn't win, she threw a crying tantrum that had nothing to do with her knee. It seems like we're all saying the same thing, just in a different way.
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#5557

LauraGilmore

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Posted Feb 5, 2013 @ 10:36 PM

I thought (up until the end) Christi was quite reserved this week. I was happy when she took Chloe to leave (Abby did not need to scream at Chloe though i am surprised that it was that incident that caused Christi to leave) but it won't last. I find it so frustrating that the moms threaten to leave/actually leave and never stay gone! I actually understand Abby's irritation of that.

I was happy Nia had a solo though I was surprised that she and Chloe didnt place! I'm glad Kendall got third especially for the 9-12 age group.

Poor Kenzie. Why was she even there if she didnt get to dance? And Abby annoyed me when she didnt put Brooke on the pyramid. I love that Brooke is so "whatever" about it all though.

I definitely miss seeing the girls more excited and happy and now they are all nervous and miserable. It's sad!
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#5558

jamisloan

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Posted Feb 6, 2013 @ 12:12 AM

Holy cow. I LOVED Abby tonight on watch what happens live. Dishing out all sorts of goods!
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#5559

missbonnie

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Posted Feb 6, 2013 @ 12:22 AM

I think I am officially done. I actually turned it off halfway through, all there is left of this show is yelling, name calling, backstabbing, crying and just all around misery and I end up in a lousy mood after the show. I know of at least 10 people where I work who have also pulled the plug. I don't know what the hell Lifetime is trying to accomplish but it's failed miserably in my eyes anyway.
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#5560

Shell76

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Posted Feb 6, 2013 @ 12:31 AM

I think that was the point people are making - Maddie wasn't crying because she was hurt. She wasn't winning, she's a small girl and couldn't swim with that huge watermelon, and her opponents were all bigger/faster than her. To get out of a game that she couldn't win, she threw a crying tantrum that had nothing to do with her knee. It seems like we're all saying the same thing, just in a different way.


Just adding a couple more tantrums to back up a fellow poster upthread. Now that I was able to watch Season 1 while Lifestyle had it streaming in January, I've seen both Ziegler girls have similar tantrums when things don't go their way. During a group dance when the girls danced on chairs, Nia had a tough time with it. Maddie started crying after their performance which she blamed on hurting her elbow/ankle, but she was really upset at Nia. Mackenzie had many meltdowns during the music video shoot (which would not have flown in the real world). Her boy partner was pretty inept, so Mack cried that she wasn't ready to do it, but it was her partner she didn't like. Maybe the girls don't like confrontation, like their mother, so they take the blame.

Just a quick comment on tonight's episode, WTH is wrong with Abby, screaming at Chloe like that? How horrible...it was either totally scripted or Abby was having a tantrum of her own. I'd like to think this was a setup, but would Christi go tearing through the hall yelling at total strangers? Maybe, since those people had to sign waivers to be shown on TV. I can't believe I'm liking Jill the most this season. I feel bad for Kendall, too, since she seems to be most affected by the unreality/reality.

Edited to say I thought Abby's watermelon game was just a fun challenge for the girls to get it out of the pool, then eat it, presumably. Just my guess, because I'm surprised Abby would promote roughhousing, in a pool no less. But this is Abby we're talking about.

Edited by Shell76, Feb 6, 2013 @ 12:41 AM.

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#5561

Modernwhimsy

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Posted Feb 6, 2013 @ 1:04 AM

Christi needs meds or more meds. That was just strange to watch. She is so on the edge....I think she should just leave. Why won't she leave? I hope this is her last year for the sake of her sanity and Chloe as well. Christi's attitude is rubbing off on Chloe. And take Kelly with you. Her kids have checked out so let's get some people who want to be there.

Chloe's rag doll dance was pretty cool. Too bad we didn't see more of it. Nia, who I am a big fan of, is out of her league in lyrical. It was kind of brutal to watch. I thought the hip hop dance was cool and had great moments but yikes were they way off! The little boy is great at his tricks but totally sucked in the group movements...kind of like the Asia of the other show. And similar to the week that Abby had replacement dancers, if all we are doing is gathering kids from across the country to spotlight on TV weekly, then Cathy should get the same criticism for slapping her name on the back of those kids.

At least we didn't get Fatty fatty Fatty from Christi. Improvement!

What was with Kendall and the uniform? Sometimes her mother just is her own worst enemy. And it WAS ironic that no one stuck up for Kendall and just let her leave.

Oh and FWIW, I've played a lot of Smear the Queer. We had girls and boys in the neighborhood and it was a common game. The guys would really pile each other but would more or less just throw down the girl who had it or the girl would just do the girl thing and toss it away before she got hit. Even at adolescent ages the guys just knew not to hurt the girls or that they didn't need to. And yes, some of the smaller, faster girls were good at STQ since there were some heavier slower boys.

Edited by Modernwhimsy, Feb 6, 2013 @ 1:33 AM.

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#5562

NoKidding

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Posted Feb 6, 2013 @ 1:13 AM

Like Holly, I'm a school administrator. What really bothers me is Holly's tolerance of the verbal abuse. As an education professional she has to know how damaging that is to children. How she stands there and allows it to happen to her child and all the children around her is beyond me.
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#5563

GrrlPower

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Posted Feb 6, 2013 @ 2:50 AM

[snip]
BTW: rewatching that clip, I swear it looks like Abby grabbed Christi's ass (to push her in the pool). How did I miss that the first time?!? Abby was going to push Christi in the back, and deliberately changed hand positions to grab her ass. hehehe

Like Holly, I'm a school administrator. What really bothers me is Holly's tolerance of the verbal abuse. As an education professional she has to know how damaging that is to children. How she stands there and allows it to happen to her child and all the children around her is beyond me.

I'm disappointed in all of the moms. You don't have to be a school admin to know Abby's abuse is harmful to children. I don't put higher standards on Holly's motherhood because of her occupation. All of these mothers should be ashamed of themselves for selling their kid's self-esteem and mental health for 15 minutes of fame.

Edited by TWoP Howard, Feb 6, 2013 @ 9:02 PM.
Quoted post was deleted

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#5564

LauraGilmore

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Posted Feb 6, 2013 @ 6:12 AM

Just a quick comment on tonight's episode, WTH is wrong with Abby, screaming at Chloe like that? How horrible...it was either totally scripted or Abby was having a tantrum of her own. I'd like to think this was a setup, but would Christi go tearing through the hall yelling at total strangers? Maybe, since those people had to sign waivers to be shown on TV. I can't believe I'm liking Jill the most this season. I feel bad for Kendall, too, since she seems to be most affected by the unreality/reality.


Christi said on twitter that she wasn't yelling at the people in the hall (the strangers) to get away from her she was yelling at the camera men. And I thought that was true because she was making a point of not letting them in front of her. She was just done!
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#5565

SweetGAPeach94

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Posted Feb 6, 2013 @ 7:41 AM

During a group dance when the girls danced on chairs, Nia had a tough time with it. Maddie started crying after their performance which she blamed on hurting her elbow/ankle, but she was really upset at Nia.


I blame that particular moment more on Abby. She had point-blank told the girls that they were not to cry and/or celebrate backstage. That is pretty standard in many competitions like dancing and skating. The idea is that they are supposed to give the appearance that this was just another performance and not a a rare moment of perfection or that a mistake was that big of a deal.

Maddie, who clearly is pushed by Melissa to be perfect in Abby's eyes, was upset that the group had messed up and was at risk of not winning. She did not blame it on injury until it became obvious that Abby was going to say something about the team not putting up that appearance.

These are little girls. Abby's preference to have them appear to be confident and nonchalant backstage isn't wrong, but she needs to provide a better place for the girls to be able to express emotions. Her typical response of saving tears for the pillow doesn't work. Instead, the girls should have been told that they should save that for the dressing room and/or the hotel/bus.

The lie shows to me that Maddie does have problems dealing with Abby and her mom's expectations. While the expectations are usually the same, when they do diverge, Maddie is left unable to cope. The other girls (Chloe, Nia, and Paige most of all) turn to their mom's for support, even silently through the glass of the viewing room. Maddie rarely does that, if what we see is true. She turns whatever frustration or stress she is feeling in on herself and then it bubbles out in the form of tears.

As for Mack's breakdown during the music video that wasn't unexpected at her age or ability. Mack was never expected to do a full group dance with the older girls that season. She was used more like Vivi with her running on and off stage to be there just enough to keep the age low. During that video practice she was being told to do the same things the older girls were doing, including working with a boy dancer. At her age it is probably doubtful she had ever worked with a boy in a dance like that. She was probably feeling overwhelmed and lacking in support. I would have cried in frustration too.
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#5566

ghoulina

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Posted Feb 6, 2013 @ 8:44 AM

I thought (up until the end) Christi was quite reserved this week. I was happy when she took Chloe to leave (Abby did not need to scream at Chloe though i am surprised that it was that incident that caused Christi to leave) but it won't last. I find it so frustrating that the moms threaten to leave/actually leave and never stay gone! I actually understand Abby's irritation of that.


And it sends a really bad message to their girls. If you say you're going to do something, follow through on it. If you actually DO the right thing - don't back pedal 5 days later because you want to be on tv.
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#5567

Evs

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Posted Feb 6, 2013 @ 8:49 AM

I think I am officially done. I actually turned it off halfway through, all there is left of this show is yelling, name calling, backstabbing, crying and just all around misery and I end up in a lousy mood after the show. I know of at least 10 people where I work who have also pulled the plug. I don't know what the hell Lifetime is trying to accomplish but it's failed miserably in my eyes anyway.


I'm close to being done also. I may or may not watch next week. The show is literally starting to make me sick to my stomach. It is not even a little bit fun or interesting. It has stopped even pretending to be a reality show. The girls look miserable. The moms keep pulling their daughters out and then bringing them back for more abuse. It's all just so wrong.

On a less serious note, all the temporary dancers annoyed me as well. Although it was interesting to see Sophia dance, I tune in to watch the girls we have gotten to know dance, not all the subs. The subs seem pointless since we know they are temporary. I will say that I was surprised that they didn't show Abby giving Zach or his mom a hard time about being one of Kathy's subs. I know it was set up by the show, but Abby rarely seems to miss an opportunity to yell at someone on camera.
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#5568

HelloPatti

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Posted Feb 6, 2013 @ 8:50 AM

I never saw girls playing this rugby-style game, either.


My kids were competitive gymnasts at a high level gymnastics school and played something similar multiple times outside the pool on conditioning days as a "reward" after a hard workout (they didn't call it smear the queer but I remember playing it as a kid with my brothers and their friends). I also remember my kids doing it at one of their birthday parties with a greased watermelon in the pool.

I have so much trouble watching this show anymore. Every time I tune it, Abby is screaming, the mothers are screaming or snarking at each other or the kids are crying. There's very little "dance" and too much "moms".
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#5569

ilovebooks

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Posted Feb 6, 2013 @ 9:39 AM

Christi I think is on the verge of a major breakdown. She snapped at Holly because Chloe didn't have as much time to learn her routine. I think Holly was just grateful that Nia had a solo for a change. Chloe has solos frequently and Holly isn't bitching at Christi about it. Christi will never, ever be happy and there is no winning with her. I was thrilled she walked out with Chloe but she'll be back.
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#5570

iluvobx

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Posted Feb 6, 2013 @ 10:33 AM

Did you hear Kelly's remark about Christi? Even Kelly is puzzled by Christi's actions. I believe there is something major going on in Christi's life. Whatever that might be, thank goodness it is not be shown on the show.
This show is getting unwatchable. In the past, at least the girls were happy and it showed, this year, they are miserable and it shows!
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#5571

sofiah

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Posted Feb 6, 2013 @ 10:57 AM

The lie shows to me that Maddie does have problems dealing with Abby and her mom's expectations. While the expectations are usually the same, when they do diverge, Maddie is left unable to cope. The other girls (Chloe, Nia, and Paige most of all) turn to their mom's for support, even silently through the glass of the viewing room. Maddie rarely does that, if what we see is true. She turns whatever frustration or stress she is feeling in on herself and then it bubbles out in the form of tears.


I've always thought Abby's treatment of Maddie may have the most damage because while the other girls have mothers who hate Abby and probably tell them to simply not listen to what she says, Maddie has seen her mom actually respect and be friends with Abby. She takes what Abby says much more to heart, I think, and she has nowhere to turn to when she yells/criticizes her.

Also agree with other posters that there is something going on with Christi. Snapping at Holly, when Nia so rarely has a solo, was uncalled for. I think the combination of Chloe not placing with her solo and then dropping the hat just threw her over the edge. Even Kelly was puzzled! Its too bad because after they beat the boys that was one of the very rare genuinely happy moments this season... when the kids ran to hug Abby and she held up the trophy.
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#5572

StrawburryTarte

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Posted Feb 6, 2013 @ 11:29 AM

What us the age difference in Mak and Kendall? In spite of her crazy mom, I really like Kendall and always think she is older than 9. I think Abby forgets, too, because Kendall is way more poised than most 9 year olds.

Btw loved abby's honesty on Watch What Happens Live Last night, and Andy Cohen's constant side eye to Carson Kressley. She was clearly getting on Carson's nerves while he tried to smooth over any impoliteness, but Andy was loving her snark and kept throwing questions out there that he knew she would bluntly answer. He NEVER us that direct with other guests. Carson is a class act and Abby is honest about flaws if nothing else. I did not like her detailed criticism of Gia Guidice (a child) then vague remarks about adult HW bad dancing. It cracked me up that she blamed editing for never showing craze and called Kelli stupid.
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#5573

SweetGAPeach94

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Posted Feb 6, 2013 @ 12:14 PM

I've always thought Abby's treatment of Maddie may have the most damage because while the other girls have mothers who hate Abby and probably tell them to simply not listen to what she says, Maddie has seen her mom actually respect and be friends with Abby. She takes what Abby says much more to heart, I think, and she has nowhere to turn to when she yells/criticizes her.


True...Maddie can't really be comfortable or be herself within the confines of dance. I hope that school is a better experience for her. If Abby chooses to punish or chastise Maddie for something, Melissa primarily sides with Abby. She encourages Maddie to do exactly what Abby wants and do it the way that Abby wants it done. That works well in Maddie's favor if Abby is happy. But when Abby's not happy, Maddie is caught in the middle again. It is very telling to me that when Maddie messes up, forgets her routine, gets hurt, etc. that her first and strongest reaction is toward what Abby will say or do. That isn't a natural reaction.
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#5574

BitterApple

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Posted Feb 6, 2013 @ 12:43 PM

I'm not sure if this has been questioned upthread, but is Christi pregnant? Last night it looked like she had a pregnancy belly under a couple of her dresses but I couldn't tell if it was weight gain, ill-fitting clothing or what.

Also does anyone know where Cathy's male dancers came from? My mother figured they were from the LA choreographer's studio and it kind of makes sense. They looked too edgy and urban to be from rural Ohio, IMO.

I loved the argument between Holly and Christi. It's funny how Holly puts on her principal voice and deals with Christi like she's a first grader having a temper tantrum in her office or something.
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#5575

SweetGAPeach94

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Posted Feb 6, 2013 @ 1:10 PM

I'm not sure if this has been questioned upthread, but is Christi pregnant? Last night it looked like she had a pregnancy belly under a couple of her dresses but I couldn't tell if it was weight gain, ill-fitting clothing or what.


Christi has denied it on Twitter. After a previous episode she made a comment about needing to cut out eating so much because she was developing a pooch or food baby.

I know last season we were all thinking Melissa was pregnant.
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#5576

cameragirl21

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Posted Feb 6, 2013 @ 2:41 PM

Christ's reaction at the end really surprised me, not so much because I didn't think she had legitimate reasons to finally remove herself and her child from this toxic environment but more so because this tiny thing is what ultimately pushed her over the edge.

The thing is that dancing with those hats and being threatened with expulsion from the team if they fall to the ground IS awkward and difficult and sometimes it just seems like Abby sets the girls up to fail just so that she'll have a reason to yell and throw a tantrum. I think that while Abby seems proud of her job and whatnot, I think on some level she is simply jealous of these kids because they're living the life she wanted to live and for this reason, some part of her has to make it as miserable for them as possible so they don't enjoy it too much.

I am not sure what moves these moms because the fame of this show is already stretched as far as it will go. Leaving scandalously just increases the little bit of fame they have, at least in the short run and if Christi truly left and enrolled Chloe in another dance academy, she could probably make a small fortune selling some tabloid the "real story" of what goes on behind the scenes at ALDC and that would get Chloe more fame than just being on this show.

All of the moms seems to have odd ways of dealing with Abby, whether it be Melissa who appears submissive but is also sneaky or Jill who seems to think she can buy Kendall's way to success or Christi who thinks calling Abby "fatty" is going to help somehow or Kelly who bickers with Abby as if they were both school children or Holly who just wants her daughter to get a bit of the spotlight, even if she doesn't win anything.

At the end of the day, I think Abby has some serious emotional issues that she's unable to cope with and is instead taking it out on the children, as if she needs to build herself up at their (and their moms') expense in order to feel important in life. Making the moms walk her dog and scoop its poop is just ridiculous and while I'm not fond of brown noser Jill, I found the whole scene of her attending to Abby's dog cringe worthy. And just so there's no confusion, I love animals, am a vegetarian for ethical reasons and a PETA member so it's not as if I think the dog is beneath Jill but the whole idea of sending a paying customer out to do a chore that you can clearly see makes her uncomfortable AND putting her in a position where if something happens to the dog, Abby can rip her a new one just made me think that Abby has some serious issues boiling underneath the surface and not all that far beneath the surface, apparently.

I was surprised to see Chloe's apparent lack of reaction when her mom marched her out, or maybe they just didn't show her reaction, which appears unlikely because this show feeds on drama like sharks feed on chum. I wonder if Chloe was really ready to leave. And there was no need to yell at her for dropping her hat, it wasn't the end of the world.

Idk, I used to love this show but it's becoming a bit awkward to watch it, Idk how to explain what I mean but I guess it just seems unsettling, like watching abuse going on and not reporting it and just viewing it as simple entertainment. The kids aren't happy and while I agree that the dance world is competitive and that children need to be toughened up if they want to enter it professionally, this show has taken it way beyond that. This almost seems like they're in prison or sent off to some detention camp and are forced to perform to save their lives or singing for their supper (literally) or something to that effect. I used to be a competitive swimmer and while my coach had her moments where she wasn't a ray of sunshine, we all ultimately enjoyed it and wanted to be there. The competitions were fun and the practices, however grueling, were part of the sport and enjoyable in that regard. These kids are no longer happy to be there and don't seem to enjoy dance anymore. Why is Abby punishing Maddie for what Melissa did? Maddie is a little girl. And why did she let Mack have a pass until she made a mistake and pissed Abby off? I guess it feels like they allowed a mentally ill person who should be institutionalized teach children and that to me is what makes this show unsettling. No matter how long these kids have been doing it and now matter how accustomed they may have become to handling the pressures of being in a cut throat, competitive sport, underneath it all, they are still just children. And I think that's what viewers find so disturbing here.
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#5577

barkley

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Posted Feb 6, 2013 @ 3:02 PM

I can't watch anymore. It breaks my heart to see the girls so downtrodden and miserable. Poor Chloe doesn't seem like she has an ounce of joy in her at all.
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#5578

Rubinia

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Posted Feb 6, 2013 @ 5:28 PM

Making the moms walk her dog and scoop its poop is just ridiculous and while I'm not fond of brown noser Jill, I found the whole scene of her attending to Abby's dog cringe worthy.


I'm pretty sure that all of those bizarre "chores" sequences (dog walking, garage cleaning, etc.) were scripted in there by the producers to create some sort of funny/tense/dramatic situation.
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#5579

Absolom

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Posted Feb 6, 2013 @ 5:32 PM

Ratings for last night: 2.331 million viewers and a 0.8 rating. Trending slightly downward I think, but not much.

I don't buy Abby's excuse of toughening the girls up for the adult dance world. So very few dancers make it there that it's no excuse for mistreating children. There's plenty of time to toughen up 17 or 18 year olds who are actually showing the interest and ability to enter professional dancing. Being abusive to eight year olds seems just abusive and sadistic to me.
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#5580

GrrlPower

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Posted Feb 6, 2013 @ 5:34 PM

This is incredibly random, but I noticed a wide shot of all the girls at pyramid this week and all of the girls - at the same time - were all covering their stomachs with their hands/arms. Chloe looked the most self-conscious followed by Brooke who also looked uncomfortable, but even little Mack was doing it. I think these girls are developing body image issues and these skimpy outfits aren't helping. I know Abby criticizes their bodies mildly (mostly stuff about the kids needing abs) but I wonder if she weighs them in like DM:Miami does.

Here's a screen shot of what I'm talking about. All look body-conscious and sad (except Kendall for whatever reason). I don't think it's just their natural body positions b/c the way Chloe and Brooke are holding themselves and covering their mid-sections doesn't look like a natural stance - it actually looks uncomfortable. Something about how these girls are trying to cover themselves just feels wrong to me.

Edited by GrrlPower, Feb 6, 2013 @ 5:42 PM.

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