Another Wednesday, another ‘World of Dance’ Duel round! Jaxon Willard, Poreotics and more take the stage to compete to make it to the final round! Follow on HL Live Blog!
Another round of highly competitive duels, and another night of saying goodbye to some incredible talent on World of Dance! First, contemporary soloist Jaxon Willard chose to go up against the young tap dancer Lucas Marinetto. Jaxon blew everyone away by flying high during his Qualifiers and bringing tears to our eyes with his story of adoption. Lucas, on the other hand, gave an uplifting and energetic performance that the judges loved. Jaxon put himself out there once more with his stunning choreography that demonstrate the pain he feels toward his birth mom, but the love he has for his adoptive mom. “God gave you the ability to fly. He gave you wings on your back,” Jennifer Lopez said through tears. “It’s an honor to watch you dance.” His storytelling through facial expression, flexible choreography and stunning turns was truly stunning.
Lucas gave a fun and upbeat performance to John Legend’s “Green Light,” and he definitely found his entertainment value! “You embody everything that is cool about tap!” Ne-Yo complimented, and added his rhythms were right on point! Lucas received a solid 88 from the judges while Jaxon stunned with a 96. We’ll see him in Final Cuts!
The Poreotics picked Marissa & The Heartbreakers to duel! The Poreotics are a legendary hip hop dance crew who returned to the competition scene to compete on the World Of Dance stage. Marissa & The Heartbreakers stunned the judges in their heels dance, and were totally empowering! Marissa Heart and her crew went first, rocking black blazers with pink lining, per Jenna Dewan’s suggestion. The girls were as in sync as ever and Marissa showed off her impressive contortionist skills. As the only upper level all-girl group, Marissa & The Heartbreakers represented! The judges loved the routine, but J.Lo was a little iffy, wanting there to be more musicality in the performance.
Poreotics took the stage next, going with their beach yoga theme, that was a tad confusing, but of course, they made it work in their sunglasses and floral sweatshirts. With their mix of humor and insanely creative choreography, Poreotics stole the show. When the judges talk about musicality, the Poreotics are the definition of it! Each of their moves connect exact to the sound of the music. Marissa & The Heartbreakers received an 83.7, while the Poreotics took it to the next round with an 97.7.
Ballroom couple Jonas and Ruby chose to duel hip-hop group FRESHH. Totally different vibes, but they’re super close in scores! Ruby and Jonas impressed the judges with their sharp routine, choreographed by Ruby’s intense dad. The pair decided to bring their Argentinian Tango to Duels, and it will definitely be great! Freshh is one to watch, though, with some ’90s-esque moves. Jonas and Ruby went first in their gold looks, and proved they were here to win! It’s hard to believe these two are 13 and 14 years old! With intense lifts, flips, quick footwork AND an outfit change, Jonas & Ruby gave Freshh a run for their money.
Freshh came out strong, like everyone has tonight during their Duel performances! With quick footwork and total ’90s flair, this crew brought their A-game! “That was so good, and so clean!” J.Lo complimented. This is gonna be a close one! Jonas and Ruby received a strong 91.3 score, while Freshh came in behind them with an 88. We’ll be seeing Jonas, Ruby and Ruby’s dad in the Final Cuts!
The Ruggeds are taking on Pursuit in this Duel round! Pursuit was a struggling crew who opened up about living paycheck to paycheck and being in pursuit of their dreams at World Of Dance. On the other hand, The Ruggeds are world renowned break dancers, but the judges wanted more dancing in their routine. First up, The Ruggeds brought more of their dance ability to their performance while also doing some incredibly impressive tricks, but they still didn’t sell the judges. “It wasn’t as powerful as I wanted it to be in between the tricks,” Derek told them, and I can agree with that. It just seemed a little boring.
The Pursuit came to fight with their high-tempo, slick contemporary dance that they performed in purple suits and bare feet. “We’re not going out without a fight,” the leader of the Pursuit said. They incorporated some other dance styles into their routine, which J.Lo didn’t love. Ne-Yo loved the song, but added he liked the song more than the performance. However, Derek, loved the routine, but also thought they could have done better. Pursuit received an 82.3, while The Ruggeds just barely made it through with an 84.7. See ya at the Final Cuts, Ruggeds!
There were three junior teams left, so there was a three-way battle! Whoa! Dem Raider Boyz step team went against the adorable hip hop Cubcakes Dance Crew and the Waacking team Flip. Flip was behind in their choreography when Jenna checked on the, while DRB was on top of their step game, but Jenna wanted some more pop from them. The Cubcakes, the youngest team in the competition, looked like they were on their way to slaying the competition, when one of their little cubs fell on her head 10 minutes before going on stage. One of their members, Kennie, was practicing her flips and fell on her head and required medical attention. With only a few minutes to spare, and most of the girls in tears, the Cubcakes reworked their routine to perform for the judges.
Flip took the stage first and the Canadian Waacking group gave an intense performance filled with unique choreography. You couldn’t even tell that they didn’t gave it together during their rehearsal with Jenna! Everything was on point and together, major steps up from the last performance. “That really surprised me!” J.Lo excitedly told them. “This was a redemption dance,” Derek added. Dem Raider Boyz impressed in orange suits with more powerful stepping. Their music cut out to show more of their strong stepping and it got better and better throughout, and the judges agreed. Next up with the Cubcakes Dance Crew, who took on the routine without Kennie. Breaking it down to “That’s Not My Name” by the Ting Tings, the Cubcakes were absolute fireballs. “Did you know that they just killed that for you?” J.Lo told Kennie when she came out on stage. “So clearly the Cubcakes came to play, ya’ll!” Ne-Yo said.
Dem Raider Boyz locked in an 85.3. Cubcakes received a strong 88 from the judges! FLlp impressed with a 90.3, sending them to the next round!
Connection chose Funkywunks to duel tonight in the last of the evening! Connection, hails from Mexico and stunned the judges during Qualifiers, especially with the latino flair in their routine. The Funkywunks were also super impressive during their Qualifier routine, with their “Sexy & I Know It” performance. The Funkywunks took the stage first with an incredible performance to “Can’t Touch This,” breaking out moves that we’ve never seen before, and making other traditional move their own. At one point, a member of the crew did a walking handstand on top of their other members’ backs. Connection then took the stage and was equally as impressive and sharp. Their competitive flair showed they were ready to fight! Yikes, this is hard! Connection received an 85.3 from the judges, while Funkywunks scored an 85. OMG — that was SO close.
Next week, World Of Dance will be at 9 PM ET on Wednesday! Tune in and follow along on the HollywoodLife live blog for another round of Duels!