As I mentioned in my Two-A-Days recap, my trusty laptop fizzled out on me last night, which meant all my notes for Dancing with the Stars went with it. Luckily, last night’s episode was quite the memorable romp. The judges were crankier than ever before, but that’s probably because maverick dancers Mario Lopez and Joey Lawrence attempted to bend the rules with lifts, handstands, and broken holds. Hubris will always get you in the end, and soon it became clear that these dueling dancers flew way too close to the sun.Before I start, let me just warn that I am recapping this entire ninety-minute show solely from memory. I may have a few glaring errors here and there, but I’m sure if we all stay strong, we can get through this ordeal together. Anyway, we knew last night’s episode would be a strange one right out of the gate as Samantha Harris managed to say all her introductory lines with nary a flub, stutter, or awkward slur. This week’s show was all about two dances: the “torrid tango,” as Samantha Harris labored to call it, and the ever festive jive. Someone was bound to crumble under the pressure, but who? Well, we didn’t have to wait long for our first dud…
Emmitt and Cheryl
In the pre-dance antics, we learned that all the travel had been taking a toll on Emmit. He’d been commuting from Los Angeles to Dallas and back and forth, and this week, he also needed to fly to Virginia for a beauty pageant that his wife was judging. Emmitt thrilled the attendees when he and Cheryl took to the stage, but it looked like he should have spent more time practicing and less time showboating. His tango was stiff and boring. He had a strange look on his face the entire time, and it certainly paled next to the exciting performances last season from Tia Carrere and Stacy Keibler (wow. Am I really saying this?).
Len Goodman said something to the sound of, “The tango did to you what no linebacker has ever been able to do.” At that point, an over-eager fan thought this was the setup for a compliment, and so he let out a triumphant “WOOOH!!!” But then Len added, “It stopped you in your tracks.” Yeah, might want to take back that “Wooh!” now. All the judges agreed that Emmitt was not in top form, and he wound up with a lowly 19 out of 30. How the mighty have fallen. Luckily, he’ll have the popular vote to keep him around, and I’m sure those swiveling hips will be back in full force soon enough.
After Emmitt, I don’t really remmeber the order. So I’ll just continue randomly…
Sarah and Tony
I don’t know what happened to Tony. Last season, he was the suave stud of the ballroom (or at least, as much as you can be a suave stud in this environment). This time around, he looks like a skinny pipsqueak, and it didn’t help that he was outfitted this week in a sleeveless cowboy gettup with a sequinned horseshoe on his chest. If you thought Drew Lachey’s “Save A Horse Ride A Cowboy” freestyle last season begged for the Brokeback jokes, you hadn’t seen nuthin’ yet.
Anyway, Sarah promised to let everything hang out for her jive (and that included her ass chest). She seems like a truly nice person, and I’m sure I’d have a great time talking to her about horses and rainbows and whatnot, but her inability to ever wipe off that goofy grin from her face is starting to really peeve me. Nevertheless, she did a nice jive that I thought was lacking in charisma, but the judges absolutely loved it. I don’t remember her scores, but they were quite impressive, especially considering how badly she started off the season. Kelly Monaco the Sequel?
Jerry and Kym
Here’s what you need to know about these two: Kym has very large, fake breasts.
The two executed a nice tango, and considering Jerry’s physical limitations, this was an impressive feat. He managed to mention his daughter’s upcoming wedding about fifteen times (when he wasn’t peppering us with self-depricating humor), and honestly, that’s all I can really remember. He earned solid scores — maybe 21 or so? I’ll go to the website and check after I’m done writing. But basically, what this dance came down to were Kym’s heaving bosom.
Harry and Ashly
If there’s any dance that Harry Hamiln is perfectly suited for, it’s the tango. He’s already got the rigid intensity built in. But alas, even though he and Ash observed some real life tango at an Argentinean restaurant, he was unable to make the most of this softball. The judges said his feet were a bit of a mess, and once again, he received middling scores. Harry Hamlin serving as the boring nadir of the show? I’m shocked!
Monique and Louis
Before taking the stage, Monique’s rehearsal time was enlivened by the arrival of none other than her mom, who kind of looked like a cross between Aretha Franklin and Maya Angelou. But mostly Aretha. Big Momma was understandably proud of her daughter, and apparently she hadn’t seen her perform in five years. Well, she was going to be in for a joyride. Monique absolutely rocked the jive. With yellow tassels shaking from every inch of her body, she looked like Big Bird on crack. I immediately ranked Monique’s dance at the top of my list, if only for her wacky intro which sent her literally flailing into the arms of Louis Van Amstel. With arms doing windmills and a look on her face like she was falling from the sky, she pulled of a risky twist and reverse jump that was so silly looking, I had to rewind it about ten times. The only thing that would have made it better would have been if she had completely missed Louis and fallen on her ass. But that would have been cruel, and I might have felt badly for her. Oh, who am I kidding? It would have been awesome.
Anyway, Monique did a great job and earned nines from all the judges. You can bet your bottom dollar that momma was going nuts in the audience. Bravo!
Willa and Maksim
Dressed like a hot pink, slutty waitress, Willa attempted to reel in the male votes this week (and it didn’t hurt that she brought along UFC star Chuck Liddell, who certainly must be losing street cred in the octagon with his cameo). Anyway, Willa performed a decent jive; although, Carrie Ann INABA later reprimanded her for including a highly illegal lift. I didn’t see it personally, but that might be because I was transfixed by Willa’s dainty hat. Also, it was around this time that my laptop went haywire; so honestly, I really don’t know what happened with Willa except that she wound up in the middle of the pack. Eh, doesn’t matter. She’ll be gone this week anyway. Such is the fate for the “bad girl” of pop.
Mario and Karina
Ready for some fun? Yeah, this is when things got real interesting. After last week’s thrashing by the judges for not sticking to the quickstep, Karina was determined to be conservative and do exactly what was expected of them. Unfortunately, Mario had other plans. He had all sorts of kooky ideas for the tango to make it more entertaining. Since I’m no dance expert, it seemed like Mario’s touches were great. He and Karina did what looked like a great tango, but alas, how foolish I was to think I had just witnessed professionalism at its best. The judges absolutely harangued Mario and Karina. Apparently they had broken the hold midway through the tango, a major no-no. Len seemed positively livid at Mario and cockiness, and Bruno pulled the old, “Why do you put yourself in this position?” Carrie Ann Inaba didn’t make things any better as she too scolded the rogue couple for their rebelious ways. As for Karina, we could tell she was trying to keep a unified front with Mario, but man was she pissed at her partner. If only she could send his ass to Siberia…
When it came time for scores, Carrie Ann doled out an 8, and noted that it would have been a 10. Same for Bruno. Len, meanwhile, had said earlier that they would have had a 10 from him too, but his punishment was infinitely more severe: he gave them a 6. Dunh dunh dunh!!! In the post-dance interview, we could barely hear Samantha Harris over the chorus of boos hailing down from the audience. It was like Paul Hamm 2004 all over again! Controversy!
Vivica and Nick
Less controversial with her tango was Vivica A. Fox who once again honed her inner-diva (which I’m not so sure is very “inner”) for this intense dance. We saw her crying after the praise she received last week, and we knew she was out for blood again this week. There was a little bit where she took ballet and appeared in a tutu, but it was just filler before the dance. She looked quite dapper in her little wig (I’m assuming that’s what it was), and for once, she only looked like a semi-drag queen. Viv and Nick then danced a nifty tango with all the passion you’d expect from the star of 1-800-MISSING. The judges absolutely loved her, and Bruno said something like “Now I know what the ‘A’ stands for: Animal! Attitude! Aggression!” He then added, “Antelope! Aardvark! Anteater! Antidelluvian! Antecedent! Anthropomorphic! Avian! Aristotle! I can go on! Aura Borealis! Ambulatory! Aluminum! Allabaster! Amputee! Asimptote!”
(Btw, I have no spell check on this computer, so don’t mind the inevitable errors in the above list.)
Anyway, the judges awarded Vivica nines across the board. In response, she let loose those convenient waterworks once again and sobbed her way backstage to Samantha Harris where she miraculously managed to transform from weepy to sassy and back again on the turn of the dime.
Joey and Edyta
Finally, our last dance of the evening. Joey Lawrence was going to impress us all with his jailhouse jive, and to get in the mood, he went out and bought some blue suede shoes. Then, with his shirt annoyingly unbuttoned, he and Edyta cut a rug on the parquet, jiving the night away like none other. It seemed like they were destined for tens, but then towards the end of the dance, Joey flipped Edyta over backwards, and it would take a blind person to not realize that that had to be one of those dreaded illegal lifts. This was followed by a showy handstand by Joey, and while it was quite delightful to watch all these antics, the judges again were pissed off. They attacked the lift, and Len in particular went after the handstand, saying it had not place in a proper jive. I tend to think that had Mario not pissed them off so much with his dance (and to some degree, Willa with her lift), the judges would have been a little nicer to Joey. But unfortunately, they ultra crabby, and after ninety minutes of this junk, I don’t blame them. I can’t quite remember Joey’s scores (and I can’t find them on ABC’s site — idiots), but I definitely recall Len giving him a six. As a result, Joey’s head bopping was kept at a minimum this week as he found himself unable to aggressively thank the judges and audience.
Will one of these cocky duos get their comeuppance tonight? Or will America finally send Willa home? We shall see!