Do you know what’s more fun than TV theme songs? Thematic TV costumes. Our remaining 8 “Dancing With the Stars” contestants took the stage tonight, paying homage to varying television series — including a few they starred in — and they might have looked better than they have all season.
But looks don’t bring home 9s and 10s. And all the feathered hair, glued mustaches and monkey suits in the world won’t spare a few of our duos from the threat of the chopping block at the results show.
In the meantime, here are our thoughts and behind-the-scenes bits on performance night, best read disembodied British voice:
We didn’t see it coming
- Bristol Palin‘s rapid descent into total crap is only slightly less surprising than the judges’ bizarre candy-coating of their clear disapproval. Praising her progress and commitment and then slamming her ode to “The Monkees” (And those were gorilla suits, by the way) with the night’s lowest scores? Two-faced and justifiably confusing to poor Palin.
- The rehearsal packages need to milk the drama for all it’s worth. (Hence, Maks and Brandy’s faux-feud), but pitting Derek Hough and Jennifer Grey against each other after one strained moment seemed a little silly. They’re the cutest together.
- Florence Henderson
and Barry Williams have long been rumored to have gotten up to some naughty business behind the scenes on “The Brady Bunch,” but the smooching and coy allusions were crazy over the top. Can’t they just admit it now or are we going to have to wait for them both to die — like Deep Throat?
Audience vs. Judges
- Len is not winning any new fans this season. The 5 he gave Kyle Massey and Lacey Schwimmer flirted with the absurd, and the crowd was not pleased. Contestants should always be judged on their technical performance — but to completely ignore how entertaining they are seems foolish. Kyle and Lacey might have had the most cohesive look and fun number. You can’t have “Charlie’s Angels” without a little disco.
- Speaking of unnecessarily harsh, Audrina Patridge may not have been in top form this week, but she certainly didn’t warrant Carrie Ann and Bruno’s surprisingly personal critique. “Still and dead from the waist up?” “Don’t be plastic, be fantastic?” We think her remarkable growth this season excuses her from those kinds of comments.
- Barry Williams is still quite protective of his TV mom, and he wasn’t pleased with some of the judges’ remarks. “I thought it was a misplaced comment, myself,” Williams said in reference the panel’s accusations that Florence and Corky were hamming it up. “It looked like a tango, when we watched it,” says Ballas. “I couldn’t understand the comedy crack. That was totally uncalled for. We did the head movements, because that’s what you do in tango.”
- Audrina’s somewhat lackluster rumba was not all her fault. Apparently the number started off all wrong. “I can never win at this,” she says. “In the beginning of song, the music was totally off four counts. I sort of panicked and stood up. Carrie Ann said I looked intimidated… it’s because I was panicked. I didn’t know what to do, so I just saw Tony and I started dancing.”
- Some of the pros got sassed for taking too long to start their dances and instead focusing on the narrative this week — Brandy and Maks weren’t among them, which is because its something Chmerkovskiy tries to avoid: “Some of the couples’ choices are more theatrical than technical. Not to throw anyone under the bus, but I’m a perfectionist and a technician. If it’s a foxtrot, I’m going to do the foxtrot 95 percent of the time.”
The night in Bergeron
Oh, Tom, we anxiously await your inevitable foray into acting. Hosting can’t contain your talent forever. We watched him do multiple takes for one of tomorrow’s promos (where he’s somehow hosting mid earthquake?) and, spoiler alert, it’s charming. We also really appreciated his shout out to Dick York in his assessment of Kurt’s “Bewitched” quickstep: “I think k speak for TV purists everywhere when I say that you were clearly dancing the first Darren.” Everyone knows Sargent had two left feet.
That’s all we got. Tomorrow there’s more David Hasselhoff — singing, we suppose? — and another elimination. Bristol, we’re looking at you, honey.
Photo credit: ABC