So You Think You Can Dance 2012 returned August 15 and featured the top 14 finalists as they offered up an array of popular Mia Michaels contemporary pieces from previous seasons. Following a string of performances that left Nigel Lythgoe feeling a little disappointed, Lindsay Arnold and Cole Horibe turned in a final number that earned raves.
Before the duo got to work, they shared the SYTYCD moments that inspired them the most. Cole was especially influenced when season 4's Mark Kanemura made the top 20, since the two trained at the same dance studio in Hawaii. Lindsay, conversely, expressed appreciation for the season 2 finale hiphop routine performed by Benji Schwimmer and Travis Wall.
When Lindsay and Cole joined Mia to rehearse, they learned they'd be performing the addiction-inspired piece made famous by season 5's Kayla Radomski and Kupono Aweau. Cole realized that the performance would be met with "high expectations", and Mia admonished ballroom specialist Lindsay to abandon her need to dance "pretty".
When showtime rolled around, Lindsay and Cole did an amazing job with the routine, which was set to Sara Bareilles' "Gravity". The mechanical, cool quality that Cole brought to his portion of the number differed dramatically from Kupono's original interpretation, but it was an ingenious twist. And Lindsay did indeed let loose and roll with the punches in stunning fashion.
The panelists loved what they saw. Guest Billy Trivett of the Ballet Boyz was "very, very impressed". Mary Murphy adored Cole's "quirky" portrayal of his character and deemed Lindsay's work "fantastic". Nigel thought they were the best of the night and expressed appreciation for their versatility. He was particularly disturbed by the "psychotically mental" quality of Cole's "chilling" rendition of the character.
Will Lindsay Arnold and Cole Horibe survive to perform again on So You Think You Can Dance 2012? Tune in August 22 to see them each dance with returning all-stars, and then see if they make the cut at the end of the show.