Sunday, February 26, 2012

Dance Academy: Having a Strange Roommate

by Amy K. Bredemeyer

I feel like this show wants to be an hour long. I also think the show wants to have some substance behind it. Neither are happening. I'm also not in love with Tara as a protagonist, Kat as a sidekick, Ethan as a love interest, or Abigail as an enemy. I like Samuel's character, so hopefully that'll help... otherwise, I'm not sure how I'm going to do with this show over an entire season. Maybe I'm too old for it. Maybe I'm not connected enough with the world of dance. Maybe it has to do with the fact that the show is Australian. Regardless, I'm hoping it gets better... anyone wants to try and point out the positive things about the show?

Dance Academy "Week Zero" (S01E02): The episode begins at Tara's home, in a small town of 300 people who all know one another. Tara sets free a joey, then her father drives her to the dance academy. [do parents not help their kids with their bags when they move to boarding school/college in Australia?] She was hoping to room with Kat, but Abigail put in a request to snag Tara, while Kat is left with a guy, Samual. [and nobody seems to be in a hurry to fix this error... is this sort of thing not a big deal in that part of the world?] Abigail tells Tara that Kat is "anthrax" to her reputation, a sentiment which is later mirrored by one of Tara's instructors. Still, Tara joins Kat in going off-campus to meet with some older girls. They're dared to jump from a tower of sorts into the water, which they do with only slight hesitation. [what's the point? are they in some "club" now or something?] It's nice to know, though, that Tara has Kat and Samuel, if nobody else!
Photo: Steve Brack/
Dance Academy Productions
The students will train in ballet, jazz, contemporary, character, and hip-hop six days a week, and grades (placements) will be posted weekly. [I personally don't what what constitutes "contemporary" as a class, but I guess I'll figure it out.] Immediately, Tara is taken off pointe, which humiliates her, as she had been in toe shoes for several years already. [I had one friend who took ballet after elementary school, and she didn't start on-pointe until she was about fourteen... maybe that's late?] She'll also be put in a remedial class. [that's gotta suck.] Similarly, Samuel is told to be put on-pointe, as he has weak ankles. [ would that help?] Tara asks Abigail how she might impress the instructor, but Abigail tells her to do the on-pointe class, only for the instructor to kick her out again. [this Abigail is not impressing me!] Abigail then reminds her that not everyone "makes it." To make matters worse, Tara overhears Abigail bad-mouthing her, so she confronts her. Abigail says even worse things, so Tara slaps her face with a pointe shoe. [whoa. she's got spunk!] Then, Tara apologizes to her teacher and hands over her pointe shoes. [getting rid of the evidence... nice!]

Tara runs into Ethan (who is actually Kat's brother), who has no memory of meeting her during audition week. [strange... is the kid pay that little attention to people?] When the first round of grades are posted, Tara is dead-last on all of them except Hip-Hop, where Abigail (who normally is at the top of the list) is below her. [so... little Miss Perfect has a big weakness...] Tara then confronts Abigail about the sabotage during audition week, but Abigail just leaves the room.[b!tch.]
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