Dance Moms Australia special Part 2 recap: Abby whines and Nia shines

dance-moms-nia-glows Lori Acken

Why didn’t any of you warn me that Dance Moms is already back June 9, Dance Moms nation? I know you knew before I did, because you always know things before I do, even I get paid to know the things. And here I was looking forward to at least a handful of relaxing summer Tuesdays after we wrap up our Australian adventures and head off to further torment in L.A. But noooooo.

Speaking of noooooo, that’s about how much fun Abby wants the girls to have before getting back down to business. A little snuggling koalas and that is enough.


A little snuggling and trying to steal their hold-still bribery food.

The reason we’re too busy to snuggle any further is because we must learn a group number for a big exhibition dealie in which The Chosen Ones — Kalani, Kendall, Mack and Maddie — will perform and Nia and JoJo will not. Because Abby does not want to spend her vacation with people she thinks are icky.

To salute their host country, Abby has worked up a dance that honors something Australian that she and all of America hold dear: Mad Max movies. Yes, those. The ones in which Mel Gibson runs down a variety of post-apocalyptic bad guys and girls in epically bloody fashion. Most assuredly a staple of all preteen girls’ sleepovers, right along with Carrie and The Little Girl Who Lives Down the Lane.


So anyway. Where’d those koalas go?

And Kalani, Melissa wants to know. Abby says she was excused to spend the day with her mom. The usual exception-taking happens by the usual exception-taking people and Holly reiterates that they will be doing Nia’s concert thing with Mikey Minden just in case any one wants to take exception to that.

The Chosen Ones mothers say they will be too busy to attend. Jess chimes in that she’s appreciative that no further mean-girl videos have transpired. Jill says that’s just how the girls included JoJo in the event.

JoJo says she was all “Wait.”




“I thought you were my friend.”


But then she got over it. She knows how life goes.
And also this happened …




We’re all bros now.
Learn from the children, mothers.

Melissa just wants to be normal. Good luck with that, dear. No, I’m not picking on you. That’s how I include you.

Since she’s got nothing to lose, Jess decides to call Abby out about whose mistakes she punishes and whose mistakes she does not. A wildlife sanctuary seems like a perfectly reasonable place to have this conversation. Jill says Jess needs to get used to it — Maddie is untouchable.

The next day we’re at a “dance facility” in Adelaide — Mikey Minden and the Fraziers in one room, Abby and the Chosen Ones in another. Wait. Where does JoJo get to go? JoJo goes with Nia. She’ll do a special dance breakdown in Nia’s concert.



Or not.


Holly tries to make introductions between Mikey and Abby and Abby brushes him off, mentioning their mutual friend Robin (I’m guessing Antin, who did time on Abby’s Ultimate) and moving right along.

When Holly and Mikey are safely out of the room, Abby sniggers that there must not be much work in L.A. if the Mindenmeister carted his butt all the way over here for Nia. Jill’s mad that Holly and JoJo didn’t invite their kids to take part in their thing that they’re doing because they weren’t invited to take part in the other thing. Abby says it’s because their girls would show Nia and JoJo up. Jill persists. Why couldn’t Holly make the event to which she and Nia were not invited take precedent over the higher-profile dealie she whipped up in its place so the Chosen Ones were not made to feel left out? You’re laughing at me right now, Jeff Collins. I. Just. Know. It.



It just gets worse for Jill. Noticing that Kalani is not there again, she asks Abby for some ‘splainin’ and gets back that Kalani is the star of the dance and not doing this part that they’re rehearsing, so just shut up. Jill says that is not fair, either. Australia is hard, Jill. It just is.

But not for all of us. Let’s werk. In nothing-but-positive fashion.


Jess notes that Mikey is never on his phone during rehearsal. Cut to Abby banging away on her phone, while Melissa and Holly talk about how unlike Holly it is to be blatantly left out of something an, instead of taking it like a left out champ, just all striking out on her own. And not just that, doing something bigger and better. Without their permission. What a monster.

Also doesn’t she know this affects the team, because when we get to L.A., we have to be a united team and how is that going to happen if Jess and Holly aren’t at the event they aren’t invited to and also that Melissa warned them not to even come near?

Excuse me one moment. (Fills wine glass. Empties it in one gulp.)
OK, I’m back.

As if on cue, Holly and Jess show up in the ALDChosen room to get themselves some grief. Abby asks if Mikey Minden is going to send her a gift, because if it wasn’t for her, he wouldn’t be in Australia. Holly says his working with one of her students is his gift to her, and a big one at that. So nyah.

Abby counters with this: “Your kids just flew around the world and held a koala today because you are piggybacking on my event. You are here because I am here.” They are here and holding a koala because the show is here. Abby herself wanted them to stay home. Said so herself.

Next day, Kira and Kalani are back at practice. Jill says Kira “allowed Kalani to come to practice” and she does appear to be doing the self-same moves the others are doing, so who knows the truth about why Kalani wasn’t there early. But I’m sure we’ll hear plenty of opinions.

Outside, Captain Potstirrer brings Kira up to speed on the “how dare Holly divide the ALDC team that excluded them in the first place” discussion and we get our most interesting editing of the day thus far. When Melissa says she doesn’t know if they’ll make it to Nia’s concert, Kira — who appeared to be on Jill and Melissa’s side — suddenly blurts, “Poor me, poor me, go whine to somebody else because I don’t give a sh*t. Ya did it to yourself! “ I think she was supposed to be hypothesizing about Holly’s feelings if they didn’t showup, but it ended up looking like she was telling Jill and Melissa to suck it up and lie in the bed they made with Abby. Which makes far more sense. But if you don’t care, JC Executive Producer Superstar, then neither do I.

At Mikey’s studio, Mikey introduces the girls to his team and tells them it’s time to get serious because you only get one chance to make a first impression and show time looms.

At Abby’s practice, she tells the girls they need to dance like manly men. Then she says that Maddie, Mack and Kendall already got to hold the koalas last year, so she gave Kira and Kalani a little more time to catch up on their Australia tourism.

Jill says, well, they should have done it on their own time.
I Dream Of Gisoni says Kira really just wanted to hang with her boyfriend, so there. Er, that is where you got the inspiration for this ‘do, isn’t it?


Taking a break, Nia and JoJo talk about the infamous Ireland video. JoJo says she sorta believes the girls are sorry for what they said and sorta not. But she knows Nia is a true friend.

In the ALDC practice room, Abby is unraveling, ranting about hair thingies and street clothes and other incidentals. She takes a moment for herself, then comes back and tells the girls that even though this isn’t a competition, they have to act like it is. Jill says if they biff the dance, it’s all Kalani’s fault. Wait, I thought it was Holly’s. I thought everything was Holly’s fault.

Well, anyway. At Federation Square, Mikey gives Nia and Holly their first look at the stage and a giant billboard over it that is flashing Nia’s face and name.



Good on ya, kid. And mother.

Nia and JoJo run through a super-fun-looking practice and they and their moms get a look at the ins and outs of putting on a real show. It’s a lot.

Jill keeps right on bitching.
Abby says Holly is shooting herself in her foot. Hollywood wants kids to look like kids.



At the exhibition, Abby and the girls pose for photos and sell swag and then Jill gets her extra-special wish. Jess and Holly come strolling in and the team is united once more when. Let’s try something new and pick on Kira’s “Us Day” instead. That should unite us. Kira says that Nia and Holly took a Them Day, too. … … Well that was fun. Leave now, Jess and Holly.

Holly says she hopes the goodwill gesture is enough to make the rest of the ALDC team show up for Nia’s concert.

As Nia gets ready for her performance, Holly tells her to use this day to rise above Abby’s attempts to keep her from achieving her true potential and become Nia Sioux, an artist in her own right. Then we call up Aubrey O’Day Recording Artist for a pep talk. Aubrey pretty much nails it.



Even though we’ve touted the exhibition as being “all eyes in Australia on the ALDC,” the unspecified venue hall looks about 8 rows deep with people sitting shoulder to shoulder in folding chairs, most of them not old enough to know who Mad Max is either.

The dance itself is a mix of leaping and power poses and Abby is happy with it. She says she can’t wait to get home to go Mad Max on L.A.

JoJo and Nia talk about whether they want the others to show up. JoJo thinks they want to, but they’re too scared of Abby to do it.

Abby is not going to like these outfits, little children.


In the Fountain Square audience, a sea of girls are screaming and crying and waiting to snap photos of their heroines. Holly says it sure would be nice to share this experience with friends.

Oh lookie. No one saw this coming … not a one of us, no sir.


The gang’s all here. The girls aren’t here — too busy signing autographs and posing for photos. But the moms are. Holly says she’s verklempt at the gesture. We’re all bros now.

Onstage, Nia looks like a veritable baby Janet Jackson and performs with confidence and panache. JoJo jojos the bejesus out of her guest-starring role. A couple audience members get their ten seconds of fame, boogying up the aisle and into the camera.

And BAM!


Nia has something to say to her fans real quick: Be yourself. Star in your life. Walk it out. JoJo wants to know who has a bow in.

Mikey Minden says his mind is blown. Nia rocked it like stars with multiple times her experience. Nia positively glows.


And that is as good a place to end as I can think of.

Next on Dance Moms, everyone is frowning, Abby plays guess-what’s-in-my-purse, Kendall’s video premieres at Universal Studios and Nia is working with Coco Jones.

So what say you, Dance Moms nation? Mad Max as group number? Is it cool to take an Us Day or is there no us in, uh, team? Do you think Jill even knows what Jill is talking about any more? Would you play a dollar to see Abby actually eat a eucalyptus leaf? And most importantly, did Nia’s triumphant ending make up for 4.5 seasons of woe? Sound off in the comments section below.



  1. Hi Holly, I really think that Nia have talent. Let the process of her journey develop properly. Allow this by not fighting with Abby her instructor and going behind her back trying to get your daughter to shine before her time. The process will make Nia well seasoned so that all who see will reckon her. But if you continue to act out of character in front Nia towards her instructor will only hurt Nia in the long run. If you really believe that your daughter has genuine talent, then stop worrying about Madi and others seemingly getting all the attention. There is a saying, “A good chief cannot lead without first learning how to follow.” Everyone wants to lead but no one wants to follow. God is watching over Nia to build an everlasting legacy. On the behalf of daughter always support her in dignity and class. Know that Nia will shine when it’s her season and time. Otherwise, keep on dancing “Nia,” you are awesome!

    • I hope you realize that Holly will more than likely never see this, and chances of her doing as you suggest are next to nothing. If the instructor didn’t treat the girls like absolute garbage, the moms would have more respect for her.

      • The world out there can be very critical and cruel. The girls need to develop tuff skin to thrive out there. If the mothers don’t like the way Abby is treating their precious baby’s; find another dance company. They have to realize that ALDC belongs to Abby and she’s really trying not only to develop excellent dancers but her company’s reputation. There’s a lot of hard work on both sides, the girls side and Abby’s side as well. Remember united they will stand and divided they’ll fall. Holly has to learn how to fight as well as pick her battles. Each girl will have a process to get to the top and getting there before they are developed will destroy them. The mothers want their child to dance with ALDC but they don’t even under-stand what it really takes to become a bonifid great dancer. It’s more than just cute outfits and fans screaming their child’s name. Otherwise, I love ALDC!

        • Okay Abby, obviously you’ve run out of minions to do your dirty work for you, and are now enrolling strangers to troll the message boards. No one is buying it, but whatever floats your boat, have at’er.

        • There’s a huge difference between constructive criticism and being verbally abusive and just downright hateful, and Abby has crossed that line far too many times. You think it’s ok for someone to make fun of your child (or any child) for their appearance or let that person tell them to crawl further up their ass and kiss it?? That’s not teaching them to have thick skin. It’s just being cruel and hateful, and it’s totally uncalled for.

  2. I find Nia to be average at best. Tired of hearing her mom go on and on about Nia being a star. I don’t see it. Oh well. And Lori – I thought you were a conscientious objector of this show last year….

    • If you find Nia average, what does that make Kendall (teeny-bopper preteen boys will like), MackZ (more of the same, only younger) and even Brooke (at least she can write her own stuff, that will likely be her claim to fame, more so than her voice ever will)? Nia has the performance quality that draws you in, and her voice is heads and tails above any of the other three. As for Lori being objective, she’s entitled to her favorites as much as the rest of us are.

      • Simply commenting on Nia… I don’t really enjoy her talent. But since you ask, I thought Brooke was insanely talented as a dancer, but boring and depressing to watch.

    • I agree…sometimes I feel like changing the channel but I love seeing the girls dance.

    • Oh, Jocelyn, I’m a conscientious objector of this show (not the children, but the show) every year. Right from Season1 Episode 1. If I could find the blog, I’d show you. That said, it is part of my job, so’s there is that. But the faceless pals I’ve made here are a major bonus.

      • Allow me. Posted July 13, 2011:

        The DVD screener for Lifetime’s Dance Moms, debuting July 13, is a curiosity. Not just what it contains, but what’s actually printed on the disc itself. To the top is militant but much sought after Pittsburgh dance teacher Abby Lee Miller and the quote, “If you want your daughter to be a star, you have to go through me.” To the bottom, three of the young girls Miller mentors (and often, in the opinion of this non-dance mom, bullies) in black wigs, bare midriffs and boas.

        So where are the Dance Moms? Oh they’re on here alright.

        There’s brown-bobbed Melissa — with daughters Mackenzie and Maddie, an Abby Lee Dance Studio all-star — who announces with a Cheshire Cat grin that her obsession with her daughters’ dance training ended her marriage, but her new boyfriend is clearly aboard, “because he signs the checks.”

        Slightly crazy-eyed Kelly, a one-time dancer herself, sports the complexly-angled and tri-lighted hairdo of a pampered suburban Mrs. and is mother to willowy Paige and rebellious Brooke. Well, rebellious in that Brookie doesn’t really care if she wins a first place trophy and thinks she’d really rather try competitive cheerleading. Despite Mom also showing off childhood cheering photos, she reacts a little something like the girl just announced she’d like to leave school and try long-haul trucking.

        Blonde booze fan Christi — with her smiley girl Chloe — confides that she pays Abby Lee $16,000 a year to teach her daughter to dance and, hence, “I find myself sometimes putting dance before school.” With Kelly in tow, she also puts a trip to the hotel bar before gluing rick-rack and jewels to the dancers’ homemade, cone-shaped hats just minutes before a competition. Abby hunts them down, but saves her wrath for a more scathing moment.

        Tastefully dressed overachiever Holly is the most civilized and rational of the group, but even she says she refuses to let Ms. Miller treat her and dancing daughter Nia like doormats and is determined to see Nia achieve the status of a featured dancer.

        Then there’s Easter/bunny/carrot (“because they go so well with bunnies”)-loving Cathy who believes these things: a) that “pink is a way of life” and b) if her 6 year-old daughter Vivi ever comes to her and says she’d rather play softball than dance, Cathy’ll probably slit her wrists.

        Her words, not mine.

        Cathy is also the owner of Candy Apple’s Dance Center, and though she believes the time has come for her “to be the mother and let someone else be the teacher” where Viv is concerned, you can tell instantly that she’d be perfectly content being the teacher to Abby Lee. Who cottons to that idea like Cathy might to a heaping bowl of bunny stew.

        We also get what I truly hope is our first and last glimpse at a mother known as Minister Dawn, who — all evidence to the contrary — actually is a minister and, thus, unleashes a holy fit, including a few choice quotes from Jesus, unto Abby Lee when her daughter Reagan is not allowed to dance for showing up in incorrect attire. Encouraging the cameras to follow along, Minister Dawn preaches — loudly — to her daughter’s teacher on what seems like a tour of the entire building, until Miller is forced to borrow a student’s cell (which the kid seems to magically pull out of her leotard) and call the cops.

        Though the children in Dance Moms are older, it’s easy to feel as badly for them as I do for TLC’s tiara-chasing toddlers whose mothers spend their college money parading them across stage after stage looking like 30-year-old makeup counter ladies from the neck up and gift-store baby dolls from the neck down, all for the sake of being able to call their preschoolers “Beauty Queens” and fill china cabinets with trophies bigger than their twerps. The Dancing kids clearly enjoy the actual art of dancing and chummily refuse to to see one another as the rivals their parents do — but they don’t have an ally in the joint when they’re having the sort of kid moments preteens will have under excruciating pressure.

        As for the mothers (and even Miller. herself), these ladies have clearly seen a reality show or two or ten and know how to craft themselves into camera-worthy characters. They’re The Real Housewives of Dance Class. Which, to me, is the series’ biggest problem. They’ve already claimed their individual roles and, thus, seem like characters, not moms with their girls’ best interests at heart, and their arguments are vicious to the scripty/stagy point of being disingenuine. Begging the casting question “Which came first? The mothers or the girls?”

        And we know perfectly well that Abby Lee Miller is collecting a pretty penny from these women, and the publicity of a reality show for her business is golden — but does she truly take this much lip from these women? And feel that comfortable dressing them down as well?

        I dunno. Like I said — not a dance mom, capitalized, italicized, televised or otherwise. But if I was, I sure wouldn’t be one like these.

        Which, I guess, is probably the point.

        • Aw. Thanks, John. I actually had time to think about things back then. And I wish I could humor you on the America’s Got Talent recaps, but that bad boy is on too much. Love the show though.

      • I’m sure there is much more to Lori’s job than just her fans wishing it was so…but, I sure would love to see Lori do America’s Got Talent recaps.

      • So last night I had an insane case of insomnia and decided to flip through the channels, and guess what was on – Dance Moms Miami!!! I’m pvr’ing that sucker so I can see how much better (or worse) the original is.

  3. Has anyone seen John Linen? Oh Jooooooohn. I realize nothing in this episode was tune-worthy, but I demand one anyway….


      Closing time
      Open all the doors and let her eat a jelly swirl
      Closing time
      Turn the lights off and save the joy for every girl
      Closing time
      One last call for alcohol so finish your whiskey or beer
      Closing time
      You don’t have to go home but you can’t stay here

      I know who I want to go back home
      I know who I want to go back home
      I know who I want to go back home
      Go back home


      Fun Facts:

      This episode and the previous week’s episode each got a 0.3 rating. There was less than a million viewers last week.

      Nia’s video posted April 28th has 1.75 million views.

      Kendall’s video posted March 27th has 2.21 million.

      These video numbers are comparable to any official Dance Moms clip posted by Lifetime. In fact the Orange Stomp dance clip posted in February by Lifetime has more views than either Nia’s or Kendall’s video.

      However Lori, no doubt they will air the episodes already filmed, so no luck there.

      • Thank you for my song, John. And I’ll ride the storm out through the rest of the season, but then, kids, we have to find another show to group-commiserate over. Mrs. Acken and Dance Moms are breaking up for good this time.


          Every time I watch your show
          I don’t understand
          Why you let the things you did
          Get so out of hand
          You’d have managed better
          If you’d had it planned
          Now why’d you choose someone we hate
          As much as we can?

          Jeff Collins
          Jeff Collins
          Who are you? What have you ever done?
          Jeff Collins
          Jeff Collins
          Who are you? What have you ever done?
          Jeff Collins
          Do you think you’re what they say you are?
          Jeff Collins
          Do you think you’re what they say you are?

          Tell me what you think
          About your friends at the top
          Now who’d you think besides yourself
          Was the pick of the crop?
          Duggar was he where it’s at?
          Is he where you are?
          Could Jon and Kate move a mountain
          Or was that just PR?
          Did you mean to flop like this?
          Was that a mistake or
          Did you know her gnashing teeth
          Would be a record breaker?

          (Don’t you get me wrong) Don’t you get me wrong
          (Don’t you get me wrong, now) Don’t you get me wrong
          (Don’t you get me wrong) Don’t you get me wrong
          (Don’t you get me wrong, now) Don’t you get me wrong

          (Only want to know) Only want to know
          (Only want to know, now) Only want to know
          (Only want to know) Only want to know
          (Only want to know, now) I only want to know

          Jeff Collins
          Jeff Collins
          Who are you? What have you ever done?
          Jeff Collins
          Jeff Collins
          Who are you? What have you ever done?
          Jeff Collins
          Do you think you’re what they say you are?
          Jeff Collins
          Do you think you’re what they say you are?

Comments are closed.

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