Tuesday night, I wasn’t able to watch Dancing with the Stars because I was at the Really Awards (which I’ve gushed about to pretty much everyone). When I was there, however, I did corner Carrie Ann INABA and tell her that two weeks ago, when Emmitt Smith performed the samba, she should have given him a ten. Not to fear, she told me. “I gave him two tens tonight!” she excitedly revealed. What she didn’t say was that the tens were flying out faster than Bruno Tonioli could put together an awkward analogy. On a week where everyone needed to learn two dances — one traditional ballroom, one fierce Latin — all the dancers, even Jerry, rose to the occasion. It was dance madness for sure, but would anyone be able to capture the ever elusive perfect score?
Answer after the jump…
Jerry & Kym
Kicking off Tuesday’s show were Jerry and Kym, who needed to train extra hard to make up for last week’s overly jokey paso doble disaster. Jerry explained that his daughter had called him up and had essentially said, “Bring no further shame to the family name!” He was therefore inspired to get back on the parquet and prove to America that he was taking this competition seriously. For their first dance, Jerry and Kym performed the Foxtrot, and amazingly, it was pretty good! I mean, it wasn’t excellent (it was Jerry after all), but considering his physical limitations, not to mention his rhythmic ones as well, it was an impressive performance.
Afterwards, the two lined up before the judges, and as is always the case, we cut to the plucky house band where one of the singers was amusingly dressed up in some sort of hybrid garb from India and Tatouine.
Pssst… Roneesha, Halloween is next Tueday.
Nevertheless, the judges praised Jerry’s comeback, ultimately awarding him eights across the board. Combined with last week’s dreadful score, that made his running total 42 out of 60 (as you may remember, in the wake of Sara Evans’ departure, no one was eliminated last week. Instead, their scores were simply added to this week’s leaderboard).
Monique & Louis
After last week’s krump-tastrophe, Monique knew she had to reel it in this time around. Unfortunately, she simply could not focus on dancing. Poor Louis Van Amstel! What would he do with his struggling ingenue??? Luckily, fellow High School Musical star Ashley Tisdale showed up TOTALLY spontaneously and declared that they were gonna go shop ’til they dropped! This led to a hokey segment as we watched the girls prance around Lisa Kline while Louis pretended to be the exasperated father-figure, holding the bags with a sitcom look of disapproval on his face. Of course, once the cameras went off, I’m sure he giddily joined the girls on their shopping spree — or at least, he would have, if he didn’t so obviously HATE Monique. No woman can replace his dearest Lisa Rinna!
Oh Louis, you’re such a ham!
Anyway, Louis and Monique performed the quickstep first, and although I didn’t notice it at first, Carrie Ann Inaba inspired me to employ my Tivo technology to go back and see that Monique spent half the dance with her heel stuck in her dress. Pretty impressive considering that Monique seemed to do such a good job. At first, I thought she was a little boring, but then she and Louis seemed to really attack on all cylinders — dress mishap be damned. The judges were totally blown away, with Len Goodman gettin’ all rhyme-y and such: “It was light. It was bright. It was dynamite!” He then added, “It was tight. It was right. It reminded me of graphite. It was unlike a neophyte. It made me thirsty for Sprite. It was not performed out of spite. My favorite color is white. Some movies I find to be trite. Let’s get into a fight. I better catch my flight. It leaves tonight. I better check the website. Where’s my kite? Oh look, a dust mite!” It continued like this for twenty minutes.
Ultimately, Monique pulled in nines across the board (Carrie Ann said she would have given a ten if there hadn’t been one little stumble). With the added 27 points, Monique’s total rose to an impressive 50 out of 60. Enough to remain the only woman in the competition?
Emmitt & Cheryl
Shockingly, this week’s video footage of Emmitt and Cheryl did not revolve around a trip back to Dallas. Instead, it focused on… well… I don’t remember. It wasn’t particularly interesting. Oh yeah, they went to a spa. And after that, Emmitt just talked about how he was trained to deal with stress and big events or something like that. Nevertheless, his big anxiety was performing the foxtrot. As we all know, Emmitt goes totally nuts during the fast, Latin dances, but when it comes to slowing down and being graceful, it’s a little problematic for him.
Emmitt had nothing to worry about. He had a great waltz that was elegant and graceful and lovely. Wow, sometimes I can’t believe what I write. Okay, pretend I didn’t just emasculate myself by writing “lovely.” Nevertheless, the judges adored the performance, and Len echoed my sentiments, albeit in a funnier, more British way. He called it “lovely jubbly,” whatever that means. Bruno, on the other hand, just started saying random phrases. “On the crest of a wave,” he dramatically said, later adding, “The lord of the manner!” I half expected him to then comment, “A bouillabaisse of rich textures! Linens bathed in starlight! Velvet waterfalls in a gumdrop jungle!”
Odd phrases aside, the judges were positively smitten, with Carrie Ann doling out the first of many tens that night. Len and Bruno were a bit more stingy, giving only nines, but with twenty-eight points, Emmitt bolted into first place with 53 out of 60.
Mario & Karina
Guess what? Mario was super stressed about having to learn two dances; so what did he do? He visited his family! Who would have thunk it? In a blatant effort to pander to women, Mario cradled his newborn niece in his arms, showing the softer side of this playah. Somewhere, Eva Longoria’s heart was aflutter.
For their dance, Mario and Karina (donning a blonde wig) performed the foxtrot, and no surprise here: it was awesome. As usual, they received universal praise; although, Len did have one bone to pick. He noted gravely that he had never seen a foxtrot with not one heel lead! “America sits in stunned silence,” replied Tom Bergeron, making me laugh out loud — much to my chagrin. Damn that Bergeron and his snappy comebacks!
Well, heel lead be damned! Mario earned a near perfect score with two tens and a nine (Len was the sour sport, as you can imagine). This caused Mario to go absolutely nuts as he gushed like crazy about how excellent this was and blah blah blah. SILENCE, dimple-face! With the added twenty-nine points, Mario’s two-week score ascended to 57 out of 60. Near perfecto!
Joey & Edyta
This week, Joey had to dance the foxtrot to “Singing In The Rain,” and what better way to get inspired than to visit the studio lot where the famous song was filmed? He and Edyta chuckled their way through the Sony lot, practicing their dance moves and honing their inner Gene Kelly. At one point, Joey made some joke about how happy he was that it wasn’t raining — which could only mean one thing: silly hi-jinx were to ensue! Sure enough, Edyta busted out a random hose (because those are always just lying around on studio lots) and sprayed poor hydrophobe Joey. She then screamed, “That’s right! SING IN THE RAIN, BITCH!”
Anyway, all this inspiration on the studio lot was worth it because the two performed a fun little Foxtrot, complete with umbrella and all (didn’t he know it was bad luck to open an umbrella indoors???). The judges again loved the dance, but Len was still bitter about the lack of heel leads. The man just wants a heel lead, people! Nothing too big: just something light, bright, and DYN-O-MITE!!!
Afterwards, in Samantha Harris’s lair of stammers and slurs (which were going at full force this week), Joey babbled on and on about how Dancing with the Stars is such a wonderful show and how great it is to be part of it and blah blah blah. Looks like somebody drank the ABC Kool-Aid. His reverence was rewarded handsomely: the judges gave him two tens and a nine (again, Len still bitter about those heel leads). With this near perfect score (which brought his total up to 53 out of 60), Joey’s bobblehead went into full power, nodding and rocking at speeds so great, I thought it might unhinge itself and roll out of the room.
Jerry & Kym: The Sequel
Returning to the stage for a second time were Jerry and Kym, who just wanted to pull off the perfect mambo. Since we already saw their training footage earlier in the show, we simply cut to the chase (thank God) and watched the two dance their booties off. It wasn’t particularly great — I wouldn’t call Jerry a paradigm of hip-shaking — but it was pleasant. Kind of. Carrie Ann applauded Jerry but said that he just wasn’t on the same playing field as everyone else. Len tried to defend him a bit (“It was nice. Concise. Like Condoleeza Rice.”), but Bruno sided with Carrie Ann. Final scores: 7, 8, and 7. These twenty two points brought the total score to 64 out of 90, causing Jerry to happily comment, “My age!” Later, Tom Bergeron deadpanned, “I don’t think Jerry looks ninety.” I’m embarrassed to say that I laughed out loud again. Bergeron — you’re en fuego!
Monique & Louis Van Amstel Lite: Reloaded
With Rachel Ray observing in the audience (and shockingly un-hyper), Monique and Louis performed the paso doble to none other than Duran Duran’s “The Reflex.” Kind of an odd choice, but it worked, weirdly enough. It certainly was better than when poor Vivica A. Fox had to paso doble to Bon Jovi. Anyway, these two were solid once again; although, we’ve seen so many great paso dobles in the past that it’s hard to live up to such high standards. The judges gave them nines across the board, raising their total to 77 out of 90. Buy time don’t lose it, Monique!
Emmitt & Cheryl: The Two Towers
Emmitt Smith + Mambo? Sounds like a recipe for success. Sure enough, he was out of control, shimmying like he’s never shimmied before. These two were undulating machines, and they had the crowd going nuts. They were truly excellent, and afterwards, Len said it was the best dance of the entire season! Could this be it? Could this be the first perfect score of the year???
Carrie Ann INABA: ten! (Crowd cheers)
Len Goodman: TEN! (Crowd going nuts)
And now it was down to Bruno. He’s pretty liberal with the tens, so would he give it up for the man???
Bruno Tonioli: nine. (BOOOO!!!) So close. So close. Everyone thought they’d get the perfect score. Who would have thought that Bruno would be the spoilsport? Still, twenty-nine points is nothing to balk at, and the score raised Emmitt’s total to 82 out of 90. Could he maintain control over first place?
Mario & Karina: Part Deux
I don’t know when the jive became a Latin dance, but apparently, it is. Mario came on stage dressed kind of like Michael J. Fox in Back to the Future. I was really hoping he’d be jiving to “Johnny Be Good,” but instead, it was “Shake a Tailfeather” (by Ray Charles, not Nelly). As usual, Mario was great, but the judges nailed him on some minor quibbles. They all said his arm tended to flop around, with Len saying it dangled like “a bit of cotton hanging from a nickel egg.” I’m not sure what that means, but I liked it!
Ultimately, Mario earned nines from everyone, bringing his total to 84 out of 90 — just two points ahead of Emmitt. Victory shall be his!
Joey & Edyta: Tokyo Drift
With his head finally no longer bobbling, Joey took the stage with his partner to perform not just a mambo, but “Mambo #5″! That’s right, the Lou Bega classic at last reared its ugly yet catchy head on Dancing with the Stars. Considering how excited I was for someone to dance to this silly song, I was slightly let down by Joey and Edyta. I mean, they were very good, but I didn’t absolutely love them. I guess it’s hard to follow Emmitt.
Ultimately, the judges praised him for letting loose and coming out of his shell (and yes, the bobblehead immediately returned). Carrie Ann and Len both gave him nines, but then randomly, Bruno slapped him with a ten. What the? You give a ten to this but not Emmitt? Lame.
Not that there’s anything wrong with it…
As usual, I pretty much watched the results show in fast forward. I stopped occasionally when I thought I saw something interesting, but more often than not, I was highly disappointed. Martina McBride showed up to be annoying and boring (sorry, ballroom dancing does not match her style). And at one point, the dancers went a little nuts to Michael Jackson’s classic, “Billy Jean.” Ultimately, however, it was time for eliminations. The three remaining teams were Joey, Monique, and Jerry. I anticipated some crazy upset where Jerry would be cleared to go to next week, leaving Joey and Monique to battle it out, but no, it was Joey who was saved from the bottom two. At that point, I then readjusted my prediction, saying that Monique would be going home in an upset. However, I was wrong again. At long last, Jerry was put out of his misery. He delivered a heartfelt goodbye to everyone, getting choked up in the process. At one point, he co-opted Samantha Harris’s microphone and assumed the role of Jerry the talkshow host. He started to make a speech about everyone on the show, and for whatever reason, I was totally enthralled. That’s why I was so pissed that Tom Bergeron interrupted to ask him inane questions about Kym (who Jerry essentially likened to the second daughter he never had). I’m as big a fan of The Berge as anyone, but he should have stayed quiet and let Jerry have his Final Thought, as it were.
What did you think about this week? Happy with the results? Who was the best dancer? The worst? Who’s going home next?