The Fox reality dance competition opted to eliminate no one during Thursday night's seventh-season results show, which followed Wednesday night's Top 6 performance show in which dancer Billy Bell decided not to perform, citing an unspecified knee injury, despite having been cleared by doctors.
Since he didn't perform on Wednesday's show, Bell was -- just as how the show had handled last week's Ashley Galvan injury and Alex Wong's injury the week earlier -- automatically placed in the results show's bottom threesome (which are usually based solely on home viewer voting) and So You Think You Can Dance's judges were then supposed to decide whether he or one of the group's other members -- which ended up being Robert Roldan and Jose Ruiz -- would be eliminated.
However when it came time to make a decision, So You Think You Can Dance judge and executive producer Nigel Lythgoe announced the show had decided that Bell's situation was different than those of Galvan and Wong, who had been restricted from dancing after being diagnosed with significant injuries and then eliminated by the judges.
"Billy, you've set a precedent on this show this week. This is the first time, I think, the doctors have cleared you to dance and you took the decision that you didn't want to dance this week. What it does do is set a precedent because, you know, you've had a week out now to rest," Lythgoe said.
"And if you were to stay, you can come back next week and dance having taken a week out. It's a little difficult for us to make a decision about that because you didn't dance this evening, you didn't dance this week."
Lythgoe then revealed the judges' decision to set their own precedent.
"The decision we've taken -- and it's one that we've never, ever taken before -- [is] none of you are going home this week. [But] two people will go home next week. Two people," he announced.
"Whoa, whoa... I don't know what this is about, I am as unclear as everybody. Nobody is going home?"So You Think You Can Dance host Cat Deeley replied.
"Nobody will go home this week, two people will go home next week," Lythgoe repeated.
"Okay, so everybody is going to get the chance to dance again. And this is to make it fair for next week, is that right? Is that why?" Deeley asked.
"That's correct," Lythgoe said.
"We just make this show up as we go along," Deeley remarked, expressing the growing concern of many So You Think You Can Dance viewers.
When it eliminated Galvan due to injury last week, So You Think You Can Dance did not -- as it had done the prior week when it eliminated Wong, whom the judges had repeatedly gushed over and considered the competition's frontrunner prior to his injury -- immediately announce that she was invited to return and audition for next year's eighth season.
"I really believe that if you are going to do the tour -- and I know that they're going to introduce dancers from Season 6, Season 7 and the all-stars -- and I believe, if you're healthy enough, you've been chosen to go on that tour," he said.
In addition, Galvan still seemed unclear about her return eligibility and tour participation the following day.
"If I get asked to come back, I probably would, yes. But then again, I don't know because I am looking forward to doing the tour," she told reporters during a July 16 media conference call. "Yesterday was my first time hearing about that I was picked for the tour. So I'm just hoping that it's the truth and I hope that I get to go on and I hope that I get better."
Fox representatives were also unable to clarify whether Ashley was eligible for So You Think You Can Dance's eighth season when contacted by Reality TV World on Monday, but Lythgoe subsequently stated that although the show had not previously mentioned such a dependency, Ashley's return eligibility would depend on whether she opts to participate in the tour.
"Ashley will be invited back to Vegas next year if she doesn't do the tour. FOX feels you can do one or the other. I'm hoping she'll tour!" he wrote on Twitter.
However Lythgoe made no mention of Galvan's purported tour selection during last night's results show when he revealed its participants.
"Obviously, the top male and female from Season 7 are going on tour, and four others yet to be cast," he said.
"The all-stars that have been chosen to go on tour are [Allison Holker] from Season 2, [Dominic Sandoval] from Season 3, [Courtney Galiano] from Season 4, and [Ade Obayomi] from Season 5. As well as that, we've got the top male and female from Season 6 -- do you remember who the top male was last year, last season? It was [Russell Ferguson] and [Kathryn McCormick]."
So You Think You Can Dance's next seventh-season broadcast will air on Wednesday, July 28 and expected to feature Bell performing with the rest of the season's six remaining finalists.
"Do you think the leg will be better?" Deeley asked Bell.
"Oh, it will be better, I'll make it better," he replied.