”Dancing With the Stars”: Mel B.’s girl power
Big night in the ballroom! Fourteen people — pros and laypeople — danced in a group. Scary Spice ground against Tom Bergeron while wearing a bedsheet. Samantha Harris used the word ”volatile.” No wonder judge DANCMSTR called this the most exciting season so far! He must say that to all the seasons. (Actually, he does. We all just sit there every time and think, ”Really?”)
Even though it was cool to see seven different dances tonight, there haven’t been too many knock-your-legwarmers-off standout performances this season, and this episode was no exception. Mel B. did earn a perfect 30, but I’m guessing the judges just felt like giving one out. I still wish they’d waited a while. Sabrina got hers on only week 4. Give it a rest, judges! Bruno’s fist pumping needs at least seven weeks to hit that ”maximum triumph” mark we all know and love. The one he gave Mel tonight was impassioned, but not quite inspired. There was no Lenward-tilting lean. Um, hello…Bruno’s fist pumps need to include Lenward-tilting leans!
M&M’s rumba was beautiful, though — especially because it almost made Carrie Ann cry. Fluidity works for Mel, and so did her toga. I couldn’t believe Samantha called the couple out on only rehearsing for six hours all week. Maks had a quick response: The rumba’s all about mentality, so they were thinking about the dance the whole time. I thought this made Maks seem pretty funny. Maybe lazy. And maybe a bit of a stoner.
Based on his pre-performance edit, it seemed like no matter how Helio Castroneves performed, this would be pegged as his ”comeback week.” Indeed, he scored a 28 out of a possible 30, for a cha-cha that might not have even deserved 9s. The footwork was all there, but Helio just appears to be going through the motions while flashing his ”Castroneves smile.” This grin is very cute, but it can’t possibly be the golden ticket he and Julianne imagine it is — right? Am I missing some technical prowess of his that deserved a 10 this week? Maybe I was too distracted by Helio’s resemblance to a Brady to really focus on the dance. Wait — no paisley was harmed in the making of Helio’s heinous milk-chocolatey suit, so he couldn’t be a Brady. Maybe he was a temp at Mike Brady’s architectural firm. (I suddenly know what I’m going to be for Halloween!)
Jennie Garth (27/30) overcame an increasingly crippling stage fright to score straight 9s on her mambo with Derek. Even though technically Jennie’s not the greatest, her routines have been some of the most enjoyable of the season — thanks mostly to Derek, whose choreography the judges keep praising, as they should. I’m glad this couple, out of all of them, got some private ballroom time during the week, even if the experience did provoke the ”brief” and blurry glimpse of a pantless DANCMSTR wandering toward the camera from beside a bed. Len looked so bewildered and lost, almost like ”a gypsy at a campfire, cooking sausages” (an image he inexplicably-hilariously derived from Marie Osmond dancing the paso doble).
Speaking of unlikely scenarios involving meat, Cameron Mathison and Edyta visited a Brazilian restaurant in New York in an attempt to capture the spirit of the samba. A waitress, a child, and a grandmother all spoon-fed Cameron tips on what to do, or just regurgitated his own words back into his mouth — and suddenly he was ready to be the spiciest, Latin-est Capt. John Smith that ever danced a samba in the jungle. Edyta/Pocahontas created a ”primitive” routine, based on somersaults, gorilla-like stances, and her sleek cream-colored performance legwarmers, that the judges didn’t really understand (at least DANCMSTR and Bruno didn’t) but still scored high enough to give the All My Children star a 25. Cameron’s promised to dance in just a thong if he makes it to the finals. Plan accordingly.
NEXT: Sabrina’s ”off night”