dance moms season 2 episode 5 “brooke’s back”

PREVIOUSLY Pey-Ton the Large joins the group. Jill doesn’t understand how many people can be in a trio. Abby gives Chloe all kinds of ultimatums. Pey-Ton thinks she’s hot to trot. Abby gets upset with a woman who may or may not be her sister.

BROOKE BATTLES THE BEAST Brooke decides to invite “Miss Abby” to lunch to ask for her spot back on the dance team. Abby and her big ol’ self lumber in to the café, where Brooke is already sitting down being a fidgety fidget and phantom-twirling her hair. As Brooke mumbles out her request to rejoin the dance team, she looks as though she could vomit at any moment. All the while, Abby’s facial expression is one of condescension and power.

After Brooke finishes telling Abby how much she wants to do bendy tricks week after week again–just like the good old days of two weeks ago–Abby’s like, “Puh-lease. It ain’t that simple.” Then she further explains to Brooke that Brooke has “stabbed everyone in the back and slapped [Abby] in the face.” And don’t forget how she “screwed you,” Abby. And how you could “feel it.” Clearly, Brooke has a knack for violating people.

However, as far as Brooke’s betrayal of everyone ever goes, the other girls on the team didn’t looked so much betrayed last week when Brooke was babysitting them Kelly invited them over to hang out. And the moms seem to really want Pey-Ton Leslie gone. So… it’s just Abby who is pissed. Really, though, I’m waiting for the moment when Abby isn’t pissed.

Brooke tries to plead her case some more, by saying that she only tried cheerleading to make sure that dance is really what she wanted to do. Abby’s not buying it, sister. It is clear that Abby’s motivations for not allowing Brooke back are merely selfish and not in the best interest of the team. Because Abby’s a selfish beast like that.

Abby claims to be “very torn” about this decision, which is probably not true since she all but kicked Pey-Ton off the team last week. But in the end, Abby swallows her pride—and some sacrificial lambs—and allows Brooke to be back on the team. But only because it’s God’s Will. Or something.

Brooke says that she will never let Abby down again. At least not until she becomes a teen mom.

PYRAMID OF SHAME Before Abby starts telling everyone how terrible they are at everything, she tells Kendall that Kendall is no longer on probation, although Kendall still has no idea what they are talking about. But look, your customized jacket finally arrived! So that’s nice.

Abby tells Kendall how important it is for Kendall to show off her brand new jacket with pride. No slouching in this customized sweatsuit, honey. You don’t want to be mistaken for some trashy ho bag from Long Island. Especially not when you will be in Long Island for the next competition. And if Jill does catch Kendall slouching…it’s a thumbtack to the back. No really, that’s what Abby told her to do…shove a thumbtack into her daughter’s back.

Christi says that when Jill learns that Kendall is no longer on probation, Jill’s grin is so big that she looks like the Cheshire Cat. Well, actually she says “Sheshire,” but people from Pittsburgh say shit weird, so I’m not going to hold that against her personally.

Anyway, Abby starts talking more about the upcoming competition in Long Island, where they will be competing against sharks bloodthirsty monsters people who want them to lose. And with that morale booster as an appetizer, Abby reveals who sucks the most this week. Unfortunately, it’s Mackenzie. Aww shucks, kid. Then it’s Nia because her mom was upset that the only black kid got cast in the societal menace role. Predictably, Paige is next since she didn’t have enough any solo, duet, or TRIO to be judged upon. WTF? Whose fault is that?! Poor kid. Kendall rounds out the bottom row. Because even though she is off probation, she is still a hot mess.

Maddie and Chloe are both on the second row, which is surprising given that only Pey-Ton is left. Several of the moms are perplexed. Even more perplexing, however, is Jill’s response. She gives Leslie the ol’ elbow bump to congratulate her on Pey-Ton’s achievement. The camera cuts to Pey-Ton, and she’s like, “Yee-haw, motherfuckers. There’s a new sheriff in town.”

BUT BUT BUT instead of Pey-Ton on top of the Pyramid…it’s BROOKE. And then Brooke walks in. Oh. Snap. That’s really mean, actually. Even if it was predictable to all of us watching. It must have been really embarrassing for Pey-Ton. Naturally, Christi loves it. At least for a couple of minutes. Then Jill, who was shown congratulating Leslie, says how gigantic and lop-sided and old Pey-Ton is. So she can’t dance with them ever ever again.

Abby tells Brooke that Brooke had better win OR ELSE, and then Abby starts trying to get Pey-Ton to GTFO. Because Pey-Ton is visibly upset, Abby makes an effort—not really—to console her, including telling Pey-Ton, “You were not the right replacement for this group. You had a great experience…you saw the Gateway to the West.” LMFAO. Yeah, kid. Don’t be upset! You got to see the St. Louis Airport Hilton Union Station Marriot.

Amidst Abby’s “buck up, kid” lecture, Leslie starts yelling about how Abby dangled a carrot in front of Pey-Ton, just like a little rabbit being tricked. If I remember correctly, Crazy Cathy from Candy (C)Apples lurrrrves rabbits, and, by association, carrots. So if she were still around, I imagine her freaking the fuck out over this conversation. I bet she makes Vivi the Hostage dress up like a rabbit all the time.

Leslie continues to yell about Pey-Ton’s unfair treatment, and Abby interviews that she has no idea how Leslie GOT IT TWISTED that Pey-Ton had a permanent spot on the team, when Abby knew that OF COURSE Pey-Ton did not. OF COURSE Pey-Ton was only on probation and was never going to actually be on the team. At this point, I’m quite convinced that Abby doesn’t know what probation means either.

After Leslie and Pey-Ton the Large leave, Abby starts doling out the solos. As we know, Brooke has one that she MUST win. Mackenzie also has one. The group number is about cheerleading. Really? Really.

MOM TALK Jill gets all high and mighty up in the Momservatory about how AUDACIOUS it was for Leslie to assume that if Pey-Ton gets a spot on the team it means she has a spot on the team. I MEAN, COME ON. The other moms are like, “Uhhh…Pey-Ton can’t help that she is gigantic…” Then Jill is all, “WTH is up with Brooke being on top of the pyramid?! Has she ever even danced before?!”

In a non-attempt to build Mommy Morale, Jill decides to explain the concept of the Pyramid to the other moms, but instead of seeing it as a dynamic construction, she sees it more as a caste system, with the Untouchables like Nia and Paige—and Kendall?—forever on the bottom, while the others are in the uppermost caste…created from the mouth of God. Or maybe Abby’s at the top, and the girls are the next level down. I’m clearly still working out the kinks of this metaphor. But I did make a Paint graphic. Because I’m dedicated.

Then, seemingly out of nowhere, and for reasons that I don’t quite understand, Christi tells Jill to “put her money where her mouth is.” And then to “Bring it!” Like I said, I don’t understand where this conversation came from. I guess Christi implies that Jill will inevitably try to buy Abby a gift in order to help Kendall get more parts and move further up the caste system Pyramid. But Christi is not threatened by Jill’s overgifting. Or something. Regardless, it acts as an important foreshadowing device. So remember it.

SOLO REHEARSALS Brooke’s solo is called “Starry Night,” and, much like Van Gogh’s work of the same name, this number is spaced-age themed. And Brooke is an alien. A very acrobatic alien. Abby acts like she has no idea what Brooke is capable of since Brooke took TWO WEEKS OFF. From how Abby is describing the situation—basically “who knows if this kid can dance or not, even though earlier I said she had God-given talent”—the kid might as well have taken two decades off.

Mackenzie is doing an acrobatic solo this week as well. During her rehearsal, Abby keeps saying things about Arabians and pikes, while Mackenzie just stands there with a birthday hat on. Then Abby tells Mackenzie to stick her boobs out. Because “you always need to stick your boobs out.” Sigh.

GROUP REHEARSAL Paige has a special part in the group number and is thrilled about it, which infuriates Jill, who won’t shut up about Kendall not ever having a solo or some other special part, even though Kendall got Paige’s spot in a trio last week. But whatever. Maybe Restylane causes short-term memory loss. Either way, bitches needa chill. But instead of chilling, Jill marches into the rehearsal space and demands that Gianna re-choreograph the dance to give Kendall a special part. When Abby finds out, she is predictably enraged.

KELLY’S HOUSE PARTY FROM HELL Kelly “thought it was a good idea” to invite everyone over to her house in celebration of Brooke’s return. TWO WEEKS, PEOPLE. She was gone for TWO WEEKS. Regardless, the kids do their homework, and the moms get their drink on. So which of these groups will become embattled in conflict this evening? Let’s be serious. Of course it’s the moms.

Very quickly it becomes Jill and Melissa v. The Other Moms, since the other moms suspect Jill and Melissa of doing shady shit to get their daughters ahead. In particular, Melissa takes a lot of heat for supposedly being in charge of scheduling private lessons and endlessly sucking up to Abby. Jill comes to Melissa’s defense, saying that it’s not Melissa’s fault that Abby likes Maddie the best. So maybe it’s not Kelly and Christi’s faults that Abby likes Brooke and Chloe better than Kendall? Whatever, lady. In the end, Melissa leaves the “party.” Better let Mackenzie drive.

RETAIL THERAPY/DÉJÀ VU Melissa and Jill lurrve to shop. Jill makes an attempt to turn Melissa from a doormat into more of…well, at least an ottoman, on which Jill can rest her feet.

Melissa speaks of Jill in precisely the same way that she spoke of Cathy last season—mainly, how they will be BFFs and it will be super duper amazing—all while Jill and Melissa do PRECISELY what Melissa and Cathy did last season–shopping and bitching and shopping. So at least Melissa is consistent.

MAC CONQUERS THE BEAST Back at the studio, Mackenzie is rehearsing her solo and kicking its ass. After she expertly completes a run-through of the routine, we see that Abby is all weepy. Mackenzie relishes in her ability to make the Great Beast weep.

BECAUSE THIS IS REALITY TELEVISION It is either really late or really early at the dance studio, and Abby and Gianna appear to be the only ones there. BUT WAIT, Jill has been lurking in the shadows and has a surprise for the two of them in Studio C. The room is decked out with two massage beds and various massage room décor like candles and seashells. And two huge dudes. Because Jill could just sneak all of that in there without anyone noticing. Obviously. Also, obviously, Jill has arranged for Abby and Gianna to receive “personal massages.” That sounds dirty.

As the two are getting their massages, Jill is still awkwardly sitting in the room. And she makes sure that Abby thinks that the whole thing was Kendall’s idea. Uhh…right. Abby makes a remark that Gianna needs to put Kendall front and center in the group dance now. I hope she’s kidding. But she probably isn’t. Sigh.

Meanwhile, the other moms have arrived, and no one knows WTH is going on. Then, Jill emerges from a dimly-lit Studio C, causing the other moms to assume that Jill is having a private. Ew. Jill responds, “No, I wish.” Uhh, okay. I bet that dude who has to massage Abby wishes you were too. That way, he wouldn’t have to be there. Anyway, the other moms want to know what is going on, and Jill gets all anxious and won’t tell them, so Christi goes in to Studio C to see for herself. Busted biatch. Everyone. Is. Scandalized. Jill tells them it wasn’t really their business. Why do it at the studio, then? Especially when the other moms are going to be there. Why are the other moms there, actually? And where…have all…the children…gone?

Jill starts making attempts to redeem herself, but instead, digs herself deeper and deeper. She calls Holly an “absentee mom.” Yeah, what a bitch..how dare she be employed! Then everyone just starts screaming, and I don’t know what all lot of them are saying. Christi gets REAL PISSED when Jill implies that Chloe is second to Maddie, which is understandably. But still, these people are all exhausting.

COMPETITION DAY Holla for some bus drama. Some Guy Who Is Not Bus Driver Jim is driving the bus, and subsequently, he is getting quite the earful from Abby. About the turnpike. He claims to be following his GPS, which is apparently of the female persuasion. I bet she has a name too. My parents’ GPS is named Tina, and she’s a real dumb bitch. So I’m not too surprised that the same is true for this other GPS. Abby frightens the bus driver immensely, so he listens to her directions instead. Good call, bro.

In the dressing room, Jill makes it very clear that she is unhappy that Kendall has no solo. Uhh, competition day is probably not the best day to be bringing these things up, lady. Then Kelly and Jill get into it, and in the middle of their argument, some woman from the competition walks in with a big smile on her face, which quickly dissolves into a look of horror and bewilderment. The woman explains that she needs to take Brooke and Mackenzie backstage to get ready for their performances. And she likely makes a call to DCFS along the way.

SOLO PERFORMANCES Mackenzie goes before Brooke, and she rocks it out onstage. Even Abby thinks so. You go, girl. Brooke is extremely nervous before her solo. Hmm, I wonder why…Brooke does some crazy contortionist shit, but Abby is not satisfied.

Mackenzie wins her age division. Brooke gets third. Sad trombone. Luckily, Abby doesn’t hate on her too much and blames part of Brooke’s score on her early-in-the-day performance.

IN THE DRESSING ROOM As the girls are getting ready for the group number, Abby starts yelling about how she needs more lipstick. And then Jill offers to put Abby’s lipstick on. Ugh. Christi makes the requisite “lipstick on a pig” joke, which I would have probably made had she not done it, even if it doesn’t totally fit the situation at hand. More than anything else, though, I’m embarrassed for Jill. Because…sad.

Christi’s eyes have been rolled into croissants at this point, and Jill has HAD IT with Christi’s ‘tude. Gianna luckily removes that children before it gets too ugly. And then the Beast steps in. She tells them all to suck it. And then to pray, which…

Before the girls go onstage, Abby gives them her usual, helpful pep talk, a highlight of which includes her telling them that everyone else has been practicing for three months, while they have only had four days. I often don’t understand her mind games.

Just before they go out onstage, Maddie—in what may be her first appearance of the episode—describes “Avalanche,” their number this week, and I’m pretty sure she calls it “jazzy Yankee,” which…I don’t know WTF that means. And unfortunately, when I typed “jazzy yankee” into Google Image search, all that came up were pictures of bros and dogs. And Jay-Z–but, surprisingly, no Jazzy Jeff. Not helpful.

GROUP PERFORMANCE Christi looks like she is in pain while she is watching the performance. But Abby thinks they did aight. Paige thinks she did well because she didn’t ruin everything. The group ends up getting a very high score, but they come away with second. Abby blames the location. And a few of her dancers. Because they’re sucky.

Abby decides to confront the moms again about all their bad vibes. She specifically calls out Jill and says that if Jill opens her mouth again, Abby will kick her out of the studio, causing Jill to “Never to be seen or heard of again.” That sounds illegal.

After Abby leaves, Jill turns herself into the victim, whining that it has been really difficult for Kendall and her to have left a studio they loved so much, only to come to Abby’s and encounter “Four really strong personalities. And Abby.” Is Abby like a super duper strong personality? I’m guessing. At any rate, Jill promises to come back next week. With [metaphorical] guns.

NEXT WEEK Dance Explosion is canceled. Hopefully not because of an explosion. The girls perform in a cow pasture shitty gymnasium. Kendall’s costume is inappropriate. Jill is sick of this shit. Maddie does not check herself. And then she wrecks herself.

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