World of Dance season 2 Duals continue tonight. Jennifer Lopez, Derek Hough and NE-YO are back on the judges panel, while Jenna Dewan serves as host.
In this round, the top qualifying acts from each division will choose a rival and face off in a head-to-head elimination duel. The judges will score each act based on their artistry, precision and athleticism, and the top scoring act from each duel will move forward in the competition and be one step closer to winning a grand prize of $1 million.
A total of 72 acts compete this season in four age-based categories: Junior (17 years old and under, 1-4 dancers), Junior Team (17 years old and under, 5-15 dancers), Upper (18 years old and older, 1-4 dancers), and Upper Team (18 years old and older, 5-15 dancers).
The highest scoring acts from the Qualifiers choose who to challenge. The judges decide who moves on and who goes home. Jenna mentors the performers as they prepare for battle.
Jaxon Willard (94) vs Lucas Marinetto (82.7) – Junior – Jaxon is a contemporary dancer, Lucas performs tap. Jaxon was teased and bullied because of his skin color as an African American adopted by a white family. Lucas’ dad was initially disappointed that he chose to dance rather than pursue sports. Jaxon is performing a routine that depicts his fraught relationship with his birth mother. Lucas is nervous about facing off against Jaxon.
Jaxon Willard – He does some pretty amazing things with his body. His control, and the height he achieves during a jump is amazing. Right after his routine, he runs over to kiss his adoptive mom. Jaxon cries as he describes the story he was trying to tell–he’s learned to be grateful for his adoptive family. Ne-Yo says he is the epitome of power and vulnerability. He urges him to be proud. Jlo was brought to tears. She says God gave him the ability to fly. Derek calls Jaxon a master storyteller. “You create magic,” he says. – Ne-Yo – 97 Jennifer – 98 Derek – 93 Total – 96 – WINNER
Lucas Marinetto – Poor Lucas has to know he’s toast. There’s no beating an outstanding performance coupled with a deeply emotional backstory. Having said that, his style which incorporates hip hop moves into tap is really impressive. Jlo says there is a “happiness” to the way he dances. “Really a great entertainer.” Ne-Yo says he embodies everything great about the style. “Your footwork was so clean,” says Derek. – Ne-Yo – 86 Jennifer – 89 Derek – 89 Total – 88 – ELIMINATED
Poreotics (88) vs Marissa & The Heartbreakers (83.7) – Upper Team – Poreotics are already legends in the hip hop world. But they had been away from the scene for awhile. Marissa & The Heartbreakers are a “heels” team. They dance sexy in high heels. Jenna wonders if the Poreotics “beach yoga” theme is kinda dumb.
Marissa & The Heartbreakers – The ladies are bringing on the swag this time. And it all happens in 5 inch heels. One of the dancers does this crazy spider move. Poreotics thought this would be a cakewalk. Maybe not so much. Derek compliments fhem for elevating their routine. Ne-Yo says “great artistic choices.” Jlo thought the choreography was a little wobbly. Ne-Yo – 81 Jennifer – 85 Derek – 85 Total – 83.7 – ELIMINATED
Poreotics – Not sure what that had to do with yoga, but…they had some pretty cool moves. Derek felt it took too long to get to the best bits, but “great great performance.” Ne-Yo says they need to take advantage of every moment on stage. Jlo felt it was a “wow” routine. “It was sick.” Ne-Yo – 86 Jennifer – 89 Derek – 88 Total – 87.7 – WINNER
Jonas & Ruby (84.7) vs Freshh (84.) – Junior – Jonas & Ruby are a ballroom couple. Dadager is the choreographer. They are definitely the frontrunners here. Freshh are a hip hop quartet. After their Quarterfinal performance, Derek suggested that they have more fun on stage.
Jonas & Ruby – The two perform an Argentine Tango. These two are like a couple of tiny adults. I wonder if Dad allows them to relax once in awhile. “I see drama from head to toe,” says Jlo, “We’re talking about the wow factor.” Derek gives them a standing ovation. “It had it all.” He takes the stage to demonstrate a critique, much to the duo’s delight. “Drama and passion is what this piece was,” says Ne-Yo. These kids are phenomenal. Ne-Yo – 90 Jennifer – 90 Derek – 94 Total – 91.3 – WINNER
Freshh – They look like they’re having a blast. These kids are talented but sadly do not stand a chance in this duel. “That was so good and so clean,” says Jlo. “You guys really came up from last time.” Ne-Yo is pleased they took the panel’s notes. Derek felt the music didn’t always match the moves. Ne-Yo – 90 Jennifer – 88 Derek – 86 Total – 88 – ELIMINATED
Pursuit (87) vs The Ruggeds (83.3) – Upper Team – Pursuit is a contemporary team with “fresh” moves. The Ruggeds are a breaking crew from the Netherlands. They’ve won a ton of titles already. Ne-Yo felt they didn’t dance enough in their Quarterfinals routine.
The Ruggeds – They took the notes. There was more dancing, says Ne-Yo. But Jlo still wanted stronger dancing. Derek loved the tricks and the transitions, but like Jlo, he still wanted more impact from the dancing. I would agree, the routine overall didn’t hold my attention. Ne-Yo – 85 Jennifer – 84 Derek – 85 Total – 84.7 – WINNER
Pursuit – This contemporary team incorporates hip hop moves into their routines. The choreography is really unique. Jlo felt they should have stuck to their contemporary style. Hm. I don’t agree with that. Ne-Yo liked the song better than the routine. They needed more powerful moments. Derek loved the abstract movement, but the song didn’t match. I do not agree with this result at all. Ne-Yo – 80 Jennifer – 84 Derek – 83 Total – 82.3 – ELIMINATED
Dem Raider Boyz (84) vs Cubcakes Dance Crew (83) vs Flip (82.7) – Junior Team – There are three acts left in this category, so they all will go head to head. Dem Raider Boyz are a stepping crew, while Cubcakes are adorable little girls who dance and Flip is a Waacking team. Derek feels Waacking can be limiting.
Flip – That was pretty crazy. There were some really cool moves. Not boring at all. “That really surprised me,” says Jlo. “That was so refreshing to see,” says Derek. He calls it a redemption dance. Ne-Yo loved the wardrobe and the choreography. They were definitely the clear winners–despite the tooth aching cuteness of Cubcakes! Ne-Yo – 80 Jennifer – 90 Derek – 93 Total – 90.3 – WINNER
Dem Raider Boyz – These steppers are decent, but the Waackers were way more entertaining and innovative. Jlo says, “Overall a really good job.” Derek felt the stepped it up from the last time. Ne-Yo thought they met the challenge. Ne-Yo – 80 Jennifer – 84 Derek – 83 Total – 82.3 – Eliminated
Cubcakes Dance Crew – UH OH Ten minutes before performance one of the Cubcakes hit her head while practicing a trixk. But the show must go on. Ha. These little girls are so cute. And pretty hilarious as well. Also talented! During the critique, the little girl who hurt herself joins the others on stage. The crew hug her. SO MUCH CRYING. “Do you know they just killed that for you,” says Jlo. “Your attitude is beautiful.” Derek says, “You guys are so sassy.” Ne-Yo says, “Clearly the Cubcakes came to play.” Ne-Yo – 88 Jennifer – 88 Derek – 88 Total – 88 – ELIMINATED
Connection (90.7) vs Funkywunks (87) – Upper Team – Connection is a hip hop team from Mexico. Funkywunks have a retro vibe and lots of humor.
Funkywunks – They’re a fun group, old school moves, with a few tricks up their sleeves. Jlo calls the routine “innovative.” Ne-Yo loves the way the meld old and new (they did the running man!) Derek noted they made a mistake, but felt they covered it well. Ne-Yo – 84 Jennifer – 85 Derek – 86 Total – 85 – ELIMINATED
Connection – I liked Funkywunks better? But this is going to be a close one. Jlo says, “I loved the personality, I loved the spirit.” But she wasn’t crazy about the music choice. Derek felt the dancing elevated the song. Ne-Yo appreciated their animal intensity. The group explains that the chose the Funkywunks because they WOULD be a challenge. Connection squeak by. I do NOT agree with this result. At all. Derek says they won because of the Funkywunks minor mistake. Hm. I think the crew’s sad backstory (impoverished backgrounds) probably helped. Ne-Yo – 85 Jennifer – 86 Derek – 85 Total – 85.3 – WINNER
ONCE AGAIN World of Dance will undergo a time change. Next week, they stay on Wednesdays, but shift to 9 pm-11 pm to make way for the America’s Got Talent 1 hour live results show.