'Dance Moms' Recap - You’ve Been Unfriended: Chloe and Christi Return

Dance Moms Kelly and Christi

On the last episode of Dance Moms we learned that Chloe was suspended over a problem between her mother Christi and dance teacher Abby Lee Miller; one of the Dance Dads from the rival Candy Apples studio yelled in Abby’s face; Cathy Nesbitt-Stein, the Candy Apple coach, started a fight with Abby and hit her with a purse, and then everyone threw water on each other. This week on season 3, episode 8, Chloe and Christi return to the Abby Lee Dance Company, but all is not well: Christi gets the silent treatment from Abby and the cold shoulder from Kelly.

My Mom taught me, “If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything”, and “If you’re fighting with everyone, it’s probably something you’re doing wrong”. I wonder if that’s the advice Abby’s Mom gave her during last week’s episode when Abby called home in tears, because this week when Christi apologizes to Abby for last week’s drama (and says she also apologized to the competition), Abby gives her he silent treatment. Also, throughout this episode we see somewhat of a kinder, gentler Abby. Maybe she doesn't remember what happened - she has after all forgotten Chloe’s name this episode. But before we get to that, let’s do the pyramid.

Abby starts the weekly rating session by talking about losing to the Candy Apple team at the Wild Dance Intensive hosted by Starpower International in Detroit, Michigan, and says their coach “Cathy is a fake and a phony. She calls herself a choreographer? She is an embarrassment to my vocation”. Holly thinks Abby is upset about losing to an all-boys team. I think Abby has a good reason to be annoyed with Cathy – I blame her for last week's dressing room altercation. Then Abby unveils the pyramid from the bottom up: Nia, Paige, Kendall, Mackenzie, Brooke, and at the top, Maddie, who is told, “It’s tough getting there, it’s even tougher staying there, and you know that”.

This week our girls in the Abby Lee Dance Company (ALDC) will be competing at in10sity Dance in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Chloe is on probation so she’s not on the pyramid, but Abby allows her to participate in the group number, a contemporary piece called “Money is the Root of All Evil”. Abby decribes the costumes: they’ll be green, they’ll have headpieces, and they’ll be decorated with real money. Maddie gets a solo, “You Don’t Know Me”, and surprisingly, since she’s been out of favor for a while now, Brooke gets a lyrical solo called “Careless”.

Abby tells the girls to get into character for the “bluesy” group dance they should think of a speakeasy or nightclub. Those aren’t common reference points for pre-teens in the year 2013, and the Mom’s discuss this while they watch the rehearsal, but the truth is, if you’re going to be a performer you need to do your research. Then Christi says that even though she’s only been gone a week, she feels like an outsider. First Holly gives her a quick update, then Kelly gives her “what for”. Kelly wants to know why Christi didn’t return her phone calls or texts. Christi wants to know why Kelly didn’t call her, Kelly said she did… it goes on like this. Christi walks away for a moment, but then comes back and they fight some more.

The next day, Christi is perplexed by the fact that even though she was only gone a week, it seems like things at ALDC have gone back to normal – Maddie is on top of the pyramid and doing solos, Melissa is back to being on good terms with Abby, Sophia is gone… Another thing is that Chloe has become “she whose name cannot be spoken” by Abby, who has taken to calling her “girl in the front”, then just “girl”, and later in the episode, “Blondie”. Abby tells the camera if Chloe wants her to remember her name, she has to make her remember it. Chloe cries about this, but Christi tells her not to give Abby the satisfaction of seeing it get to her.

Meanwhile, Melissa says she doesn’t want to get in the middle of the fight between Christi and Kelly, and then proves this by doing the exact opposite. Down in Abby’s dance shoppe (that’s how Abby spells it) Melissa questions Kelly about the situation with Christi, and they both agree it’s time for everyone to get over it and get along. If only!

Brooke rehearses her solo, and says that Abby gave her a routine called “Careless” because she knows Brooke couldn’t “care less”. Ha! Abby tells Brooke she wants her to work hard and to care about whatever it is she wants to do, and not just be an average kid who falls through the cracks. Abby admits she gave Brooke this number to jab her a little bit and asks, “Brooke, do you care, or could you care less?”

Holly and daughter Nia
Nia tells duet partner Paige that she’s going to ask Abby to let them do their “The Wild Child and the Wallflower” dance that was cut last week after Holly and Abby fought over Nia’s pain management illness (RND). Paige says she’s “very terrified for her because Abby can be a little scary at times.” Nia proves to be a logical young lady and approaches Abby in a mature manner. Abby says she's "not saying 'no'”. Cross your fingers, everyone!

Christi and Melissa go for a drink, and Melissa tries to smooth things over between Christi and Kelly. She thinks they are like a couple that has broken up. Christi says she feels like an outsider. She also tells Melissa that she knows they’re not always the best of friends, but she appreciates the meeting. They hold hands.

Abby and Maddie go over her “You Don’t Know Me” solo. Abby says the judges only think they know Maddie, but she’s going to show them the real Maddie at this competition, and so instead of a pretty, angelic routine, she going to do something edgier.

Then Abby runs Nia and Paige’s duet and tells them that because they’ve had two weeks with this solo, they should be twice as good as everyone else. She re-instates the number, then she warns Holly and Melissa that going forward she will not tolerate their behavior. Holly tells the camera that at this point, Nia has already won. I agree, and bravo to Holly; Nia is awesome.

Up in the Mom Cave, Jill stirs the pot between Kelly and Christi, and Christi says when Kelly wasn’t in the studio, she was her biggest advocate, but that when she had a problem, Kelly didn’t call her. When Jill asks, “Where do you go from here?” Christi answers that she doesn’t know, and she gets teary-eyed, which is out of character for her. In her camera confessional she says it was an extremely hard week for her and Chloe, and that everyone except Kelly called her. She talks about how the team went to the competition in Detroit and shared crazy experiences, but “Life went on without Christi and Chloe, and I don’t think anybody really even missed us."

The group rehearses, and Abby says the number is nowhere near competition ready. Abby yells at the team and then at “Blondie”, and Christi steps in and yells that her daughter has a name. Abby retorts, “so do you and it begins with a ‘B’.”

In the next scene we see ALDC arriving at the Coral Springs Center for the Arts in Fort Lauderdale. Melissa says that in10sity is a good competition for them this week, but that there are a lot of intense (in10se?) feelings in the group. Abby tells the girls that in Florida dance is part of the culture, so they really need to focus on their technique. We find out that Christi and Kelly didn’t socialize the night before when they landed in Florida.

Abby gives her dancelings advice about the competition – she tells Maddie that other dancers may have beautiful technique, but they don’t have her face. She tells Paige that having fun doesn’t mean being goofy. Kelly starts a conversation with Abby about how she favors Maddie over the other girls and the yelling starts. Yikes, Kelly! Don’t give Abby a reason to pull the duet or Brooke’s solo!

The competition begins.

Maddie does her solo in a royal blue two-piece costume. It doesn’t look much different than her other solos – maybe some quicker moves – but as always, she does phenomenal job. Then we see Brooke’s dance. She wears a pretty one-sleeved purple costume with cutouts. She also does well, and Abby says she’s nailing it and has fluidity. Broke says she thinks she showed Abby that she does care. Nia and Paige do their musical theater routine in skirted costumes – Paige is in hot pink, Nia is in pink, orange and yellow. It’s very cute and even Abby is smiling. She thinks they could have been better dancers – straighter legs, more pointed toes – but says this number was about telling a story, and that’s exactly what they did.

Backstage, Abby tells all of the girls they did a good job, and she hugs them. Then she pulls Nia aside to make sure she knows it was Holly’s fault the duet was cut last week. Nia just nods. Holly steps in and tells Nia she thinks this is Miss Abby’s version of an apology. To paraphrase Abby, “as if!”

The group routine is next. They perform a contemporary dance in green costumes trimmed in sparkly fabric and money. Chloe is worried that she’ll be rusty since she hasn’t been on stage for two weeks. The song “Money is the Root of All Evil”, is a sultry song, and it stands out. The choreography is cool, and the girls give a great performance.

Then it's time for the awards.

For the Elite Junior Duo/Trios, Nia and Paige get 4th Place. In the Elite Teen Solo Division, Brooke takes 5th place. For the Elite Junior Solo Division, Maddie earns 1st place (Lucas from Dance Moms Miami is 1st runner-up). In the Elite Junior Small Groups, ALDC wins 1st place.

Backstage Abby is full of win and “woo hoos”. She tells the girls “sometimes greed is good” and she makes it rain money. Abby admits the reason she’s so happy this week is because for once, Christie and Kelly are fighting with each other instead of her. Then she heads out to enjoy her weekend in Florida.

Kelly tells Christi they need to talk outside, and they go rehash their argument while Holly and Jill listen at the door. Kelly says, “I called, what else you want me to do?” Christi says that if Kelly couldn’t get her by phone she should have driven to her house. They argue some more, and then they take turns saying “F@#k You!” to each other. It’s actually kind of hilarious.

Are you Team Kelly or Team Christi? What was your favorite ALDC routine at the competition this week? Were you all happy to get a break from Candy Apple Cathy this week? Leave a comment and let us know what you think.

To see all of our Dance Moms coverage click here.


Next week’s episode of Dance Moms focuses on Abby’s beloved poodle, Broadway Baby, who has passed away. Many of us have been in Abby’s shoes, and know that to lose a pet is to lose a member of the family. Hugs to Abby.

Dance Moms airs on Tuesdays at 9/8c on Lifetime

Kelly and Christi photo: Barbara Nitke, courtesy of Lifetime
Holly and Nia photo: Scott Gries, courtesy of Lifetime

Posted on Wednesday, February 20, 2013