The Jabbawockeez

I witnessed the hottest thing I have seen on TV in years the other night – finale for American’s Best Dance Crew. If you want to instill nationalism in today’s youth and fight their disenchantment, just promote shows like American’s Best Dance Crew. America is a mix of many cultures and the people from each geographical region have various characteristics. I have been exposed to people from each area. I lived in DC, which is a mix of north and south. My husband is from the mid-west and I’m from the West – WESTSIDE!!! The final episode was a battle between all crews from each region of the country.

The first dance was the Westside, made up of crews from San Diego, Hollywood, and the OC. They were the most diverse group with many Asian, black, white, female, and male dancers. Their dance was slower, slick, smooth, and funky, like Snoop Dogg’s voice. Their moves were tighter and crisper than any other dance crew with very intricate choreography. The west is always the most creative and uses visual effects by clever positioning. During their dance, they pretended to drive a low rider with hydraulics bouncing to the beat and they ended with everyone doing their own b-boy stance flashing west-side symbols. They were by far the hippest crew.

The next dance was the South and they showed everyone why they call it the Dirty South. They danced to Lil’ John and they danced low (I mean they looked like there were sitting in low chairs). They showed how someone is supposed to dance to crunk: slow and powerful, hitting every beat hard. They did a lot of stomping and the girls would roll their hips with their legs spread to the audience. The South had the best female dancers and their large, strong, shiny thighs were hard to miss. They had the most explosive intense energy. Towards the end of the dance, a guy does a flip and the girls bend over and touch their toes (like the songs says) facing their butts to the audience and shaking them while walking backwards and the boys pretended to play them with drum sticks. I was just in awe at first, but the dance really summed up what I had seen in dance clubs in DC for a while. People in DC do those moves every weekend in the club. The South has a gritty sexuality that is unmatched by any other region and loosely resembles some Bantu African style of dances. This was my favorite dance of the night.

The third dance was the Northeast, represented by crews from Boston and Jersey. They were very clean-cut looking dancing to LL Cool J. Their stunts were great as usual. One guy ran up stairs of people and did a flip off the top; however, their dancing was unoriginal and moves imprecise. They ended with busting out the campaign glasses. (Ending on northeast snobbery – how perfect!) The dancing was about as weak as the hip hop from the region.

The last dance was from the Midwest and they always exceed expectations. There was a male crew on skates from Indiana and a female crew from Chicago dancing to Pop Lock and Drop It. They were matched perfectly with complex choreography. They started and ended the dance with one crew holding the other up like puppets. They all dressed like wholesome kids. They danced so good it was hard to tell if they were all on skates or if no one was on skates. They did some cool break dancing and popped it a lot. They were like the nice white guys next door hitting on the sweet naughty girl in pigtails.

Rightly so, at the end of the episode, Randy Jackson crowned (with hip hop baseball caps) the JabbaWockeeZ the best dance crew in America. Their dances blew me away each week and they had a style that no one has seen before. Randy says they are the future of hip hop but I don’t know if anyone else can do what they do. For the semi-finals they worked with a mixer to compose their own music with a dance in the Jaba-style. The song starts with applause and a black man preaching. They clap like mimes and one guy pretends to be a microphone while the other pretends to give a speech. Then they dance slowly in formation locking to the violin beats. They danced completely in unison with sharpness and did beautiful moves with fluttering fingers and then a low hip hop beat pounded. Everyone jumped into their own b-boy stance and their leader started doing the most amazing break dancing I’ve ever seen. You have to check this at the link below. The song ended with the sound of rain and their fingers trickling down and they pointed to the sky to remember their crew member that died at the beginning of the show. The reason I’m writing this is because the JabbaWockeeZ are not just dancers, but they are illusionists. They wear white masks and gloves concealing their identity so create a pure interpretation of the music. They have positioning that deceives the eye. They had this one stance where it looked like an 8 foot guy was levitating in the air, by having three guys on their knees in front with the top half of one body and the lower half of another sticking out on each side a foot from the ground. They also used props as wheels for a car made of JabbaWockeeZ and bounced like a low rider. They’re like Cirque du Soleil meets the streets. They have created an amazing cultural phenomenon among our youth that should not be ignored. This is the Broadway of the hip hop youth, which is now being brought to mainstream America.