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'Dance Moms' recap: Taking a bite out of Candy Apples

Season 4 | Ep. 13 | “Decisions, Decisions” | Aired Mar 25, 2014

Previously on Dance Moms: Abby Lee Miller turned red and yelled at tiny, defenseless humans wearing leotards. Angry mothers sat in a glassed-in room like animals at the zoo, and everyone was generally horrible to each other. God, I love this show! Now let’s talk about my highlights from this week’s stay at the Abby Lee Dance Company (ALDC if you’re cool).

The Replacements
Abby starts the week off by announcing Kalani is officially replacing both Brooke and Paige on the team, and, more importantly, Kira is replacing the much-maligned Kelly. Leslie loses her mind because she realizes Payton’s place on the team continues to be in jeopardy (and because she’s Leslie). Drama!

Pyramid Madness
The pyramid unveiling is the usual routine with the exceptions of Payton’s placement ahead of Maddie and the retaliatory inclusion of Kelly’s photo at the top. Jill gleefully responds to Kelly’s unflattering snapshot by cackling, “It’s funny!” while Christi looks bemused. Oh my, how soon the mothers forget…they’re all just one physical altercation with Abby away from being in Kelly’s shoes!

Marcia, Marcia, Marcia!
Poor sweet Chloe is always getting thrown to the wolves. Once again, Abby twists the knife by pointing out she was beat by a 9-year-old doing a hand-me-down dance with a hand-me-down costume last week. This would be an amazing burn if Chloe was not A CHILD. Stop burning the children, Abby! Save your burn book for the grown-ups, OK?

Costume-gate 2014
After Abby announces they’ll be competing at World Class Talent in Canton, Ohio (deadly Candy Apple territory), she points out Brooke and Paige have two of the costumes they’ll need for their group number “Frost.” She then calls on the moms to get them back by any means necessary and threatens to cut girls from the number if there aren’t enough costumes to go around. At this point, I truly believe she wants these women to do WWF-style battle for the costumes, perhaps hoping for more scratching and hair-pulling?

Fashion check!
Someone explain to me what type of purple monstrosity Christi is wearing in her first interview? Did she kill a pale lavender Muppet and drape it across her shoulders? I give her points for effort though. Hey Christi – you do you.


This week at Candy Apple Dance Center (CADC), Cathy runs a routine sans the choreographer that actually choreographed it (uh-oh, SpaghettiOs!). She also does a killer impression of Jill while all the CADC dance moms uncomfortably look on. Cathy is such a great villain, you guys!

No profanity allowed
Making children cry is OK at ALDC, but apparently profanity is beyond the pale. Abby pressures Christi to call Kelly for the missing costumes and appears to have a Post Kelly Stress Disorder (PKSD) moment, railing about her feelings of abandonment. This whole scene escalates into Christi uttering the curse word that cannot be named. Abby retaliates by yelling at all the girls during rehearsal, filling their little eyes up with tears and scarring them for life. Yes, that’s such an improvement over profanity. Stand your ground, Abby!

Is that dust in my eye?
Viewers at home may have shed a few tears when Nick from CADC danced a beautiful tribute to his recently deceased father. Are those tears in my eyes? No, I’m fine. It’s just a little dust, but could you pass the tissues?

Tunnel Vision
Once again, Leslie spends the entire episode in the firm grip of paranoia, certain that Kalani is usurping Payton. Even the normally subdued Holly gets frustrated, telling Leslie, “I really don’t want to hear about you and Payton and your boohoo party.” When costume-sizing issues eliminate Payton’s solo, it sends Leslie into an epic crash and burn that culminates in a forced exit from the competition. That was exciting!

ALDC wins first place for Kalani’s lovely solo number “Unless You Say You’re Sorry” and for the group number “Frost.” Despite all the Candy Apple odds stacked against them, Abby’s girls are once again undefeated. They rub it in Cathy’s face by cheering at full volume, making it impossible for her to escape their triumph. OK, Cathy — your move.

Next week on Dance Moms: Abby struggles with the failing health of her mother, making everyone genuinely sad. Also, the girls are replaceable (in case you didn’t know).

Will Payton and Leslie come back for more? Is Cathy a better villain than Abby? Share your thoughts in the comments, and let me know why Dance Moms is your guilty pleasure.

Find more from Katrina Parker at KatrinaParker.com

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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