Does Alex Freaking Wong deserve to be an All-Star on 'SYTYCD'?

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Image Credit: FOX

Eagle-eyed viewers of last night’s episode of So You Think You Can Dance noticed a brief audience shot at the end of the show featuring several alumni from past seasons. I personally caught a glimpse of season 5′s Kayla Radomski, season 6′s Kathryn McCormick, and season 7′s Robert Roldan and Kent Boyd, who miraculously still has not been fed past midnight and transformed into a gremlin. And, oh yeah, I also saw Alex Freaking Wong.

Alex, you may recall, is the supernaturally talented contestant from season 7 who occupies two of EW’s Top 5 SYTYCD routines of all time, including the No. 1 slot. He’s also the dancer who only lasted three episodes of the live shows last year, thanks to a lacerated Achilles tendon that forced him to withdraw from the competition and into months of likely grueling work to bring his body back to its former glory. At the time of his injury, SYTYCD exec producer and judge Nigel Lythgoe invited Alex to return to the Las Vegas audition rounds to compete in season 8, but Alex revealed on his Facebook page that he “wasn’t ready to dance” when the Vegas rounds began this season in early April. His appearance in the audience last night, however, has already sparked a lot of SYTYCD fans to ask: Will Alex Freaking Wong be an All-Star this year? 

Signs do seem to point in that direction. In late May, Alex performed on The Ellen DeGeneres Show with several other former SYTYCD contestants, and he definitely seemed back to fighting condition. And Alex himself has made quite clear he wants to come back; a few days ago he posted on his Facebook profile: “Hopefully I will be on SYTYCD at some point this season. We’ll see – the more you guys infiltrate Nigel and SYTYCD pages about having me back, the more likely it will be!” (A rep for Fox declined to comment, noting that none of the All-Stars, who will partner with the season 8 contestants starting with the top 10, have been announced.)

Should Alex return, though? Yeah, two of his three routines on the show last season will likely remain legendary among SYTYCD acolytes for time immemorial. But his tenure on the show was cut terribly short, and up until a few months ago, he was presumably slated to be a contestant again, not an All-Star. It doesn’t seem exactly fair to bring Alex back after logging only three weeks as a competitor, when dancers who have logged more than twice that time won’t make the All-Stars. And if Alex did come back, he could overshadow the season 8 dancers, who have already proven themselves to be among the most solid crew of contestants the show’s ever seen.

Oh, who am I kidding, of course I want Alex to come back. In all the ways that matter — talent, impact, popularity — he has more than earned the title of SYTYCD All-Star. For anyone who is still on the fence about this, I submit to you this clip of his performance on Ellen last month:

C’mon. You know you want to see more of that, right?

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Read more:
‘SYTYCD’ recap: Debbie Does ‘Dance’
Melanie LaPatin picks her Top 3 ‘SYTYCD’ couples
‘SYTYCD’: 25 Best Performances Ever

Comments (66 total) Add your comment
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  • Christina

    Freaking Yes!

  • Mr. Holloway

    He certainly deserves to be an All-Star (even though his tenure on the show was short, he had an undeniably big impact and he’s clearly a good enough dancer).

    However, I REALLY don’t like the idea of his return becoming a bigger story than the top 10 dancers competing for this year’s title, which is a very real possibility.

  • Kaci

    I would love Alex to be on the show in any way possible. He’s already an all-star to me!

  • Bobby’s Robot

    YES! We’ve been deprived of his gift for too long!

  • Anonymous

    Yes, and I’m so glad Kayla will be too (hopefully.)

  • steph

    I think the fact that he was only on the show for three performances and yet we’re STILL talking about him and reminiscing about said performances means he’s kind of a big deal. I think it would actually be less fair for him to be a contestant at this point – even though I would LOVE to see him dance weekly.

    • Laura K.

      THIS. The only way he COULD be back on the show is in a non-competitive capacity. He has so much hype (deservedly) that he’d just walk away with it. No one else would stand a chance. And that would be far less fair to the current contestants than his being an All Star is (or would be) to former contestants.

  • Justin

    Not at all. The guy is great, but they should have brought him back this season as a contestant, not an all star.

    • Kat

      I’m not sure you read the article. It says he wasn’t fully healed/in shape in time for the auditions for this season.

    • Kasey

      Great is an understatment if it wasn’t for the injury he soooo could have won last year.

  • kahuna

    Alex’s specialty is ballet. The only dancer he could dance with is Ashley and she probably won’t last that long.

    • steph

      I think they’d also put him in contemporary pairs as well.

    • veronica

      the point of the allstar isn’t to dance the contestant’s specialty, but his own. so any contestant that pulled his name could do a ballet number with him. just like it’s no one’s specialty to do bollywood, but there went nick and iveta last night.

  • orville

    Sure, why not? He obviously has fan backing and he probably won’t ever come back as a contestant, so why not as an all-star? I just hope that Kent being in the audience doesn’t mean a return as an all-star. I’m happy that Kathryn might return again–she was the best female at partnering, in my opinion. I’m kind of happy to see that it looks like Jaimie might be coming back too–I think she was completely under-rated in her season. I’d love to see some people from the first couple of seasons return–how about Heidi or Artem? It would be kind of cool to have some of the SYTYCD alumni who have graduated to DWTS return for a while, especially Dmitry.

  • AB

    as long as they don’t bring him back as a regular contestant in the future I say, HELL YES!

  • Lewy

    This is a tough one. I agree that Alex’s tenure was short-lived and for that reason, maybe he should return as a contestant. In the same breath, he is SOOO incredible and already has a huge fanbase, they might as well give him the title if he competes in Season 9. I think it is fair to give him All-Star status based on his popularity and the fact that he danced one of, if not the, best hip-hop routines of all time.

  • Jacob

    I think Alex deserves a spot as an all-star, but if he’s not ready yet wait for Season 9 or an All-Star Battle Royale! But I think this year’s new all-stars could be Robert, Kayla, and Kent…but I really want Ivan, Heidi, Katee, Jason and Janette to be considered as All-Stars!

    • Felicity

      Ideal All-Star Line Up: Females – Katee, Janette, Kayla, Kherington (yes I know I will get flak for that) and Jaime. Males – Robert R, Alex W., Jakob, Ryan (would prefer Dmitry but prob can’t get him), and why oh why can’t we have Joshua or Russell????

      • Gabe

        I really like your line-up, but Kathryn and Mark are necessary as well.

      • kellybelly

        Yes, Gabe, Kathryn and Mark are definitely necessary! They are my favs!

  • Marcie

    But wouldn’t his partner have an unfair advantage? Wouldn’t want to be one of the other contestants.

    • Katja

      Excellent point. I would love for him to come back to my TV, but I can see how his being an All Star would very easily dominate at least part of the season, when the focus ought to be on the actual competitors.

    • orville

      I don’t think any of his partners would have an unfair advantage over any of the other all-stars. Whoever they bring back are likely to be fan favorites too. Besides, once they get to that point, it will be different partners every week, so everyone will have an equal shot at him. What I think *would* be unfair is if he ever did return as a contestant. Can you imagine that a season like that would be fair in any sense of the word? Imagine him amongst the top 20 this year….do you think any of them would have a chance against him (whether or not they’re better dancers)? Besides, despite not finishing the season, he was the de-facto winner of last season. Who does everyone talk about more–Lauren (or *any* of the other contestants) or AFW? The only type of season he could realistically compete in anymore is an all-stars competing against each other type of season. I have a feeling that the “not medically cleared to compete” excuse is a line that they’re feeding us to explain why he wasn’t in Vegas. I think the producers knew that a season with him as a regular contestant again would feel fixed.

  • Shelby

    I’m torn… I’d love to see him do all sorts of routines, but I don’t think it’d be fair to anyone else in the season, because of his history on the show. You know he most likely would have won last year had he stayed. I wonder if he’s going to forgo it for that reason- it strikes me as something that Alex Freaking Wong would do. But if they make him an All-Star, we’d still be able to see him, so I guess either way it’s a win!

  • Nee Nee

    I recognize all of those dancers except the girl in the black and white shorts. Who’s that?

    • Valley Girl

      Looks like Jaimie – the one who did “The Hummingbird” dance with Houk a ways back.

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