'Dancing With the Stars' Results: Turner loose
The ouster of he of the lovely accent and his partner of the 1,001 leg-warmers, Edyta Sliwinska (who's going to call her Edyter now?), marked an emotional end to a jam-packed results hour, filled to the brim with performances and a lot of fun and silly previews for next week’s highly touted Movie Night.
First up: Len’s recap of what the head judge called “an absolutely topsy-turvy” evening. Niecy Nash hoped that she would make it a fast dance next week, because “all these skinny girls have nothing to shake.” Nicole Scherzinger (who looked like she was ready to join her fellow amazon sisters on Paradise Island with her hair down and her head piece on), was in tears and upset at her own shaky performance. Other folks would quickly shake it off. But doncha know? “This is me. I’m an artist. I’m not like other people,” she cried tearfully. Remember that the next time she sings about loosening up buttons. Also, Chad Ochocinco laid his showmance with Cheryl Burke on extra thick with a vat of high fructose corn syrup on top, explaining his hope that “Someday, I can be a Burke.” (Thankfully, Tom was around to cut through the copious amounts of schlock by later observing, “Is it just me, or is Chad about three compliments away from sounding really desperate?”)
The judges selected Pamela Anderson's and Damian Whitewood’s lovely rumba as the encore dance. And that split down to the floor at routine’s end impressed again its second night.
Sade came out and performed twice. And if you caught Tom and Brooke getting caught up in some weird pronoun business going on during their announcement, it was because Sade is the name of the band, and Sade Adu is the name of the lead singer. The first song was “Babyfather” from their latest album, “Soldier Of Love.” The smooth and soulful Sade makes for great bedroom music, as seen in the accompanying rumba by Chelsie Hightower and Damian Whitewood. I also liked how the backup singers addressed head-on what happens when Urkel and paper-flower centerpieces mate. The Grammy-winning group then trotted out an old favorite for their second number, “The Sweetest Taboo,” while dancers tumbled and moved like hip street kids across the ballroom floor.
There were a bunch of cool performances during this results hour – enough to make it appear as though “DWTS” was making a concerted effort to reach a younger, hipper audience. Five pairs of junior dancers hit the floor in a routine choreographed by Mark Ballas that showcased the future of ballroom dance. And then the Macy’s Stars of Dance segment featured a mesmerizing fusion performance combining the traditional dancing talents of New York City Ballet principal Tiler Peck and the violin group Nuttin But Stringz, choreographed by hip-hop dancer and “So You Think You Can Dance” alum Travis Wall.
We were also treated to some awesome childhood footage of our pros as youngsters hoofing it up the competitive ranks. This, of course, was before they danced on reality TV and into our collective hearts. Among the notable tidbits: the bevy of ponytails sported by the men. Derek Hough, Mark Ballas (with braces) and Julianne Hough, pals since they were knee-high to a Mirrorball, were unlovingly dubbed the “Ballas Brat Pack.” A 7-year-old Anna Trebunskaya as an adorable sequined chipmunk. And, of course, Maksim Chmerkovskiy in decidedly unhip and yet completely endearing fairy tale garb complete with tights and knee high socks. Which was made even cuter by the accompanying story: Turns out his subpar acting skills relegated him to being a mushroom or a tree in plays, so his parents ended up placing him in ballroom dance instead. “Let’s make him dance for the rest of his life,” Maks recalled his parents saying. “Thanks a lot, parents.” No -- truly. Thanks.
Loved that Tony Dovolani (whose appearance hasn’t changed a bit) was the bad boy who got ejected from an event after he threw some yahoo into the crowd for stepping on his partner’s toes. Of course, it made sense that he would be cast as the lead in “Glambo: First Dance” on those undeniably silly but completely entertaining previews for Movie Night. How great was it to see Tony oiled up and running amok in the name of vengeance?
And from “ChaChablanca” to Double O-cho Cinco in “Dance Another Day” to “Tuesday the 13th” with Bruno in a bedazzled Jason mask, making his way backstage (and past mopping custodian “Lenny”) and swinging a lethal Mirrorball, those previews were a delightful treat. I even paused to read all the fine print on those initial preview warning shots, which said things like rated R for “strong ballroom violence, Mirrorball malice and diabolical laughter” or “strong graphic lathering, repetitive language and a really gigantic explosion.” “Under 17 requires blindfold and earplugs” or “a fake ID or cool older brother.” Ha! Those “DWTS” producers are just getting too clever for their own good. Here’s hoping the dances live up to the previews.
But back to the elimination. At the end of this results hour, it came down to Aiden and Edyta, Niecy and Louis Van Amstel and Kate and Tony. Again, they dangled the fate of Kate minus eight plus Tony like a juicy slab of tabloid steak until the last possible moment. At least Kate has learned to turn her stern frown upside down while up on that stage of doom. Her smiles make her look so much more approachable and human.
But again, despite having the lowest scores, Kate was saved from being one of the remaining two couples on stage. That fate fell on Niecy and Louis — though as Tom explicitly mentioned, it didn’t mean that they were necessarily in the bottom two. How’s that for confusing? And anyone catch what Niecy said while up there on that stage? Was it a pitch for her companion spinoff show to “What’s Going On With the Judges?” —“What’s Going On With the Voters?”
Sadly, though, it was Aiden whose jig was up. The actor won’t be able to take his matinee-movie-star looks into the film-themed program next week. It’s too bad: I was looking forward to seeing more of him as a gambler with a bedazzled eye patch in “Dance Another Day.” Chalk it up to one of those cuts that happen before the final print is released.
What did you think of this elimination? Does the preview promotion blitz have you excited about next week’s Movie Night?
-- Allyssa Lee
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Photo credit: Adam Larkey / ABC