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.
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.
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.