Dance Moms Chatter Part One recap: Ten bucks and a beverage for your thoughts

Lori Acken

Anybody else wondering what sort of nonsense has led to our doing a season-finale-type recap show only four episodes into the second half of Season 3, Dance Moms nation? Were Cathy and Abby too busy to film this week’s episode? Did 10tensity Dance suddenly close up shop? What gives?

To launch Dance Moms Chatter Part 1, Jeff Collins, Executive Producer Superstar — who’s sporting a snappy new GQ  ’do — says we fans just can’t get enough of the drama. Oh yes, we can, JC. Yes, we can. But to feed our supposed addiction, we start out with a collection of Abby’s most obnoxious moments. Highlights include her making Maddie cry and being labeled a Monstrosity of Evil. Without conflict, there wouldn’t be any show, JC reminds us. Like, literally, brother. I’d like to suggest that without dance there wouldn’t be one either, but this entire season is pretty much proving me wrong.

Kelly and Christi join JC onstage just in time to talk about Abby’s love life. We learn that Abby may have two boyfriends. A sailor in a pair of ports! We also learn that Bus Driver Jim chauffeurs Abby to the movies on the bus whenever they’re at competitions. No word if he counts as one of the boyfriends. Or who gets to choose the flick.

JC presses onward about the supposed boyfriend in L.A. — which I’m guessing is Abby’s professional partner, John Corella. Christi says that he’s really just a friend who is more interested in seeing himself in the tabloids than keeping Abby cozy at night.

Speaking of “just a friend,” JC moves on to Kelly and Christi’s big blowout and we see some highlights of that. JC opines that no one says F.U. like Christi. Then he asks if any bad feelings linger from the fight. Kelly says she hopes that they can still have the kind of friendship they once had,  but she doesn’t trust Christi 100 percent. Christi says Kelly’s perception is her reality. Kelly says she knows where she stands with Christi now. Then we get a reminder of their mending fences a few weeks back and they have an encore cuddle.

Man, we are just busting a move on this thing! Two minutes per topic, at best. We bring out our next two guests, a pair of comedians named Lisa Arch and Nadine Rajabi, who are also Dance Moms super fans. And apparently called each other up to coordinate their muted-print sundress wardrobe choices before they made their big debut.

Lisa Arch (that’s her giggling away on the right) wants to know if the Moms ever do anything other than be at dance class or dance competitions, because it’s putting her off on letting her own son do activities. Kelly says they have very good husbands to help out at home. And they hire people to do some other stuff. But Melissa hires the most people of all. If she could hire someone to brush her teeth, she would.

Good enough. Let’s talk Mom-on-Mom rage. First a highlight reel. Nadine R. loooooves her some Mom-on-Mom rage. The discussion turns to whether or not the other mothers were afraid of Kristie. And how Christi got the nickname Fat Christi, which she only really had for that one episode. Christi and Kelly say Asia was the first to say that said her mom is Skinny Kristie and Christi is Fat Christi. From the mouths of babes, huh, people. Christi says Skinny Kristie is actually Martini Glass Shaped Kristie  —  amply endowed on top, skinny on the bottom. Lisa does an imitation of Kristie that makes her sound like Joan Crawford.

When we come back from commercial, we talk about new mom hazing. In the requisite highlight reel, there’s Jill abuse. And Kaya abuse. And a brief reminder of the scab moms. But mostly Kaya, because guess who’s right here in the studio, still rocking her Jill’s-hair-Holly’s-clothing makeover?! JC calls her a fan favorite. Raise your hand if she’s your favorite, fans. Yeah, I didn’t really think so.

We get a reminder of how Kaya got her Black Patsy nickname, then Lisa — who really needs to put her drink down — says she thinks Kaya is actually nice and sweet and kind inside and only acting up because the other moms are scary. Shy Patsy, if you will. Shy Patsy says the other women are bitches. That’s our nice, sweet girl! Just for sport, JC asks Kaya to assign the other mothers nicknames of their own. We have Mild Mannered Melissa. Holy Holly. Lorazepam (that’s Ativan, sedative enthusiasts) Kelly. Crazy Christi. I Love Cathy. Oh wait, make that Cool Cathy. Kaya says Jill doesn’t deserve to get a nickname.

Nadine and JC revisit the idea that the “Old School” Dance Moms can be tough nuts to crack. Christi says she’s not an old-school Dance Mom. She’s a young-school Dance Mom, so there. And Kaya’s an old-school pain in the ass. A young one.

JC asks the comics if they share his love for how Patsy always says hilarious  stuff like how people are going to get jumped and shanked. Nadine says something that makes Kaya want to jump and shank her, so she moves over by Kelly and Christi for safety. Lisa says the Pitt Crew moms are a clique and intimidating and Shy Patsy is only having trouble being accepted. If Kaya wants to be accepted by this crew, I will eat my shirt and jump and shank the rest of me.

When we come back from the next commercial break, JC announces that we’re going to play Ten Dollar Pyramid with Lisa and Nadine. JC will flip a square, ask a question and the first super fan to get the answer right gets 10 bucks.

Question 1. Which sea creature do the Dance Moms think Abby looks like? Nadine plucks the correct answer — Shamu — from the list. For Abby is plus-sized and wears a lot of black and white.

Question 2. Cathy would slit her wrists if Vivi preferred to do what instead of dance? Nadine says talk. Or maybe baseball. Wait. What? Everyone’s talking at once. The correct answer is T-ball, but I’m not sure who said it. I think Jeff keeps his 10 bucks on that one.

Question 3. What historical figure have we NOT done a dance about? That’d be Argentinian human rights advocate Eva Perón, subject of the musical Evita. Everyone’s sort of collaborating on the answers, so I don’t think Lisa and Nadine are going home with too much extra cash in their pockets.

Next question: What was Christi afraid Black Patsy would pull off? Lisa says another $100,000 contract. “Exactly!” hollers Kelly. Holy crap! Kaya got $100,000 for running her mouth, getting kicked out of competitions and poking people in the nose? Well, whatever. The correct answer is Christi’s extensions. Her bleached blond extensions, Kelly reminds us.

This is all terrifically disorganized and I think I missed a question somewhere in here, but now we want to know where the mothers said Jill got her blue fur vest. Nadine hollers Cookie Monster, which is exactly right. Muppets must die for Jill’s fly style. JC says we fans love to obsess over the Dance Moms’ looks. Well, mostly we like to giggle about that, but maybe I’m nitpicking. He asks Kelly and Christi which Dance Mom is most obsessed with her looks. Christi says Jill, because she has to put on a fresh coat of gloss to get off the bus at 5am. Then we have a highlight reel of Jill’s best looks. The tiger sweater. The fur vests. Cowboy Jill. You forgot the Plethora of Tie Dye in your highlight reel, JC. Or I was typing when you showed it.

Next we move on to the physical evolution of Abby, which really just entails a foofier hairdo and more makeup. JC wraps this talking point up by noting that she mostly looks like John Belushi playing Elizabeth Taylor. Be nice, JC. Ab’s the gal who rescued you from Outrageous Kid Parties oblivion.

After another commercial, we enjoy a highlight reel of “Meltdown Moments.” Mostly a rehashing of Christi and Kelly defending their kids while Abby bellows like a banshee, but also a little of Abby freaking out about Cathy’s injustices. Christi says the nasty moments were hard to watch. Nadine says she thinks Abby gets off on being a bitch, but devil’s advocate Lisa reminds Christi that in the most dramatic clip, she said “go ahead and replace me” when she should have said replace Chloe. Christi says it goes hand in hand. Hate the mother, brutalize the kid.

Kelly says she’s been trying to behave herself this season. Lisa says her favorite moments are when people leave dramatically. JC says he loves Christi on her knees in a skintight dress and 6-inch heels. Er, we’re still talking about the show, right, JC? Christi says her husband loves her like that, too. Boo-ya!

The discussion moves on to the time Abby gave Chloe and Maddie the same solo, back when Maddie and Chloe actually danced on Dance Moms. Christi says Abby did that to shut her up and put the girls on a level playing field. Let’s relive this little disaster, shall we?

Christi sums it up by saying Chloe took the victory in the awards but Abby said Maddie won and went in search of the judges to inform them of that fact. Out of more than 80 dances, that was the only one mysteriously misjudged, so draw your own conclusions. Given that we just went through this a few weeks back, my previous conclusions are still hanging on the fridge, so let’s move on and talk about crying. And let’s see some, too. We have Maddie crying. Kelly crying. Paige crying. Cathy crying. Big Mac crying. Jill crying. Paige crying again. Christi crying. Abby crying about Broadway Baby. Cathy crying again. Chloe crying. Abby fake crying to her mother, which is JC’s personal favorite. Kelly and Christi mock away in the inset.

Nadine says she thinks Abby has to think about dead puppies in order to cry. Well yes, Nadine. One specifically. Lisa says watching Cathy cry is like hearing the Wicked Witch talk … or something like that.

JC wants to know which of the girls is the biggest crybaby. Christi says she won’t throw any of the kids under the bus by calling them a crybaby. Kaya, however, raises her hand eagerly. Christi threatens to pull out her weave if she says it’s Chloe, but Kaya is undeterred. Kaya says Chloe, Paige and Kendall all cry way too much for the circumstances. Kelly says Kendall’s the one who cries without having a real reason to cry. Lisa says it’s most memorable when Maddie cries, because those are the artful tears of a real dauncer.

To wrap up, JC wants to know what life lessons our special guests have learned from Dance Moms. Lisa says she learned that there is no more dramatic exit than saying, “That’s it, I’m done!” Nadine says she learned that no matter what people might say about some folks’ icky outfits, they continue to dress badly, anyway.

Kaya has learned this: “Not a damned thing.” That’s our little shrinking violet!

Kelly says the most valuable thing she hopes her kids have learned is that they’re not going win at everything, so adapt with grace. JC says he believes that the kids who learn that lesson will be the most successful. The underdogs shall vanquish in the end. Christi puts in her two cents and says it’s easy to win but hard to lose and persevere. Kelly agrees. We all decide Maddie’s headed for a serious diva breakdown.

So what say you, Dance Moms nation? Was I totally robbed of my spot on the Dance Moms Chatter comedian sofa? Are Kaya’s contributions worth a hundred grand? Did it look like Kelly strapped her dress on with so much electrical tape? And did we really need all those coffee tables — or this special? Sound off in the comments section below.

On next week’s Dance Moms Chatter Part 2,  Abby and Melissa do their time in the hot seat and it looks like Lisa’s been swapped out for someone who looks the Chinese guy in The Hangover.

New episodes of Dance Moms return Tuesday, July 16 at 9/8CT on Lifetime.


  1. I agree with almost everyone on here regarding the demise of the show. The last several programs have been sooooo boring, way too much Cathy & her crew! But last night was the worst. Those women, with their 1/2 gallon drinks, nasty attitudes and utterly foul mouths were beyond contempt when I realized how many children were in the audience! They were so busy bad mouthing Abby & teaching those kids how to judge people based on their looks, how to swear, drink your problems away and, in general, behave badly in front of millions of people, can there be any doubt what horrible mothers they really are! Abby may not be kind all the time but she doesn’t claim to have motherly instincts, Christie & Kelly do – they’re wrong!!

  2. This show went from great to ghastly. The editing and scripting went from tolerable to down right unrealistic. I’m sure that Abby can be a bitch but come on, if she really treated the kids this way all the time what parent would continue to send their child to her? First Kelly/Christi said they couldn’t leave because of their contracts with Abby and now they say its because of contracts with Lifetime. I think Abby isnt any where near as harsh as they make her out to be, the moms are making a pretty penny filming, and a good chunk of change on the meet n greets. Also, enough with the weight jokes. This shows main audience is teens and preteens so what are they learning? Just my two cents.

    • Great points Kristy, I’m starting to lean towards that myself, of Abby really was that awful, she would have NO students in her studio. Not to mention, she would more than likely be brought up on some sort of criminal charges for mental and emotional abuse (in extreme cases of course). I’m sure she isn’t all sunshine and roses, and in a way I can see her logic behind being tough on those kids. Once they get out into the professional world, people they work for aren’t going to coddle them and tell them it’s okay to make mistakes and forget their numbers on stage. Anyone who can “graduate” from Abby’s studio having put up with that more than likely won’t be phased by criticism and hard-core “coaching” in the professional ranks. Although with the weight issue….she’s supposed to be setting an example for her students. What does that say for a teacher, a dance teacher no less, who spends the majority of the lesson sitting on matts? She can’t even do any of the moves that she’s expecting the girls to do. That’s why she’s so focused on terminology (although that’s a good thing to have as well, in any profession), she has to tell them what to do, because she can’t physically show them. She does seem to have lost weight this season though, I hope she continues, not just for her appearance, but for her overall health. She’s a heart attack waiting to happen, especially when she gets upset and her blood pressure goes up, that’s never a good sign.

  3. Thank you again for enduring this spectacle for us, Lori. I think that the end draws nigh, and hope that you find comfort in that.

  4. Lori, you most definitely were robbed! You should have been on that stage! 🙂

    It was nice of dirty ole man JC to let us know that Patsy is our favorite. Good to know. 🙂

    I will not watch pt 2. Melissa and Miller? not! 🙂

    And Jill still raids Sonny Bono’s 60’s closet 🙂

  5. I thought the comedians were hilarious!!! Seriously have them on the show the entire season!

    The one question I had was what was up with Christi’s magical color-chaging dress?

  6. I’d say we go with “the craptacular editing we’ve come to know and love from all the other episodes,” Cinesca.

  7. I agree, Whitney. My money is on this being the final season of the Pittsburgh Dance Moms, so they’re just wringing every drop of footage that they have out of it, weaning us off of the kids and making us sick to death of the moms. And Max, ya made me shoot coffee out my nose. Thanks for that.

  8. Christi was funnier than the two alleged comedians.

    You are funnier than they are. I am funnier than they are.

    My cat is funnier than they are.

    Next time show us some damn dancing.

  9. Loved the recap. I didn’t watch this episode because it seemed pointless, I think these shows should be more of a tell-all… Like give us the inside scoop or something new, it’s just re-saying what they say in the episodes.

  10. If you ask me that was a complete waste of time. We didn’t learn anything new. Black Patsy is now considered a “dance mom” and a “favorite” at that??? News to me. We have another week of this silliness next week. Have NOT been liking this show lately–but I gotta say I enjoy your funny recaps.

  11. It’s funny Lori – I actually have a TV tracker app on my phone that notifies me when one of my favorite shows is about to air an episode. It didn’t say that Dance Moms had an episode airing, and from reading this recap, the app was right. These episodes are so far removed from the core of the show that I don’t even bother trying to go watch the episodes online. (Conveniently enough, Lifetime’s website has it to where any of the new episodes with the Pitt crew had to be watched through your cable provider, while the others could be watched by everyone. Rude!) I know the title says Dance Moms, but I’m tired of seeing the moms. Tired of these recaps and forcing more drama down our throats. Tired of JC convincing us that we want more drama, that we care about what the mothers are wearing or doing with their hair, and that we want to talk about the same old fights. It feels like this show is running its course to lead up to a Dance Moms LA. That’s great if Lifetime wants to carry us over to a new show, but don’t do it this way. At this point, I’d rather not sit through any episodes at all and watch any of this crap they’re putting together. Someone call me when a real episode airs again.

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About Lori Acken 1195 Articles
Lori just hasn't been the same since "thirtysomething" and "Northern Exposure" went off the air.