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Dancing with the Stars recap: Orchestral Mirrorballs in the Dark

Planet Mirrorballus orbits a full orchestra during a lively jaunt across the Glitter Galaxy. It’s Classical Night!

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Dancing With the Stars

TV Show
Reality TV
run date:
Tom Bergeron, Carrie Ann Inaba, Bruno Tonioli, Len Goodman, Erin Andrews, Julianne Hough
Current Status:
In Season

Hooray! As you may know from my American Idol recaps, I’m a sucker for a string section. So I was thrilled that Dancing With the Stars did another Classical Night for season 14. Welsh singer Katherine Jenkins had first visited our fair planet during the first classical go-round in the first go-round in season 12 — one of my favorite episodes ever. Here she is singing along with then-Troupe members (decoys, all of them) Tristan and Peta. This time, Joshua Bell, Jackie Evancho, Vittorio Grigolo, and 16 new orchestra members stopped by to share their talents. O Fortuna! I murmured, before realizing that The X Factor has ruined that piece of music for me forever.

Let’s all take a pause to remember, on this lovely and elegant classical night, that you can’t spell “classical” without “ass.” Thanks Mark! You could spell it without “abs,” is all I’m saying.

Will the judges please reveal their scores? Carrie Ann Inahhhh-ber?

Maria Menounos and Derek Hough: 30/30 paso doble + 27/30 Team Tango = 57 out of possible 60 Our Pretty Boy Pro had told Maria he had yet to see her “be a female,” so during their paso doble she decided to sprout fangs and kill him. Derek is always a great Dead Derek, and the perfectly structured routine set to “Montagues and Capulets” was exactly the tension-building theatrical masterpiece the producers wanted — especially considering the golden boy had sat out season 12. (It’s a testament to Derek’s choreography that since then, I’ve loosely associated his work with Classical Night. He wasn’t even there!)

Did this deserve the first perfect 30 of the season? I mean, I can’t argue with the DANCMSTR that the dance was “sharp as a razor, crisp as a Pringle, and had more tension than my grandmother’s knicker elastic” — mostly because I’m in shock that Len just name-checked Pringles. Shouldn’t he have said “crisp as a crisp”? But yeah, I don’t know if this was the best dance of the season.

We can add George Lopez and Wilmer Valderrama to Maria’s ever-elasticizing fan base. Kudos to Derek for waiting until week 7 so that he could properly heed the advice of a different Derrick on ABC. (“Save the drama for Wilmer Valderrama” is my favorite Happy Endings quote ever.)

Katherine Jenkins and Mark Ballas: 27/30 rumba + 27/30 Team Tango = 54/60 Mark went shirtless for the bedroom dance, which was sort of EWWW.com but really only fitting as their costumes had been donated by Game of Thrones: The Musical (joked Tom). Katherine’s huge fake braid with flowers and sparkles twisted in was possibly my favorite DWTS hairstyle ever. Their rumba to “Canon in D” (this is where an “Only on Planet Mirrorballus” bumper sticker would come in handy) was classic but restrained and obviously very slow. Fine with me — I love when there’s enough time for couples to try that crazy balancing act where the woman is on life support via her partner’s grasp of one of her legs and one of her arms and suddenly he releases the arm. And she makes it!

NEXT: Donald Driver and William Levy are all tied up (YOU WISH)