This wouldn't be SYTYCD if I wasn't annoyed by Mary Murphy. Beyond that, the debut was a fairly forgettable affair that focused entirely too much on the sick underbelly of delusion. Being a veteran and supposedly savvy producer, Nigel Lythgoe clearly wants to highlight the voyeuristic appeal of people embarrassing themselves, and in fact, sometimes he directly instigates it -- all of which is all fine and good, though in extreme moderation (oxymoron?). I can only speak for myself, but I can only take so much of Sex or clueless auditioners who happen to be dance instructors before I lose all interest. To attenuate matters, the episode didn't show many of the good dancers -- obviously, they're saving them for the semifinal eliminations -- and what good there was wasn't all that. Sure, Jamal and his perfect comic timing was hilarious -- maybe too perfect to be an entirely unplanned occurrence -- but even the one breaker -- E-Knock -- we saw was underwhelming. Amazing tricks, for sure, but lacking a je ne sais quoi that'd make his stint on the show as memorable as, say, Pandora's.
So without any really compelling stuff to cover, I expect that these first couple weeks will be quite unremarkable until they start showing the goods.
Indie rating: Godspeed You! Black Emperor - "09-15-00 (Part One)"