On last night’s Dancing With the Stars‘ season 12 semifinals, I, Annie Barrett, Fringe Fairy T.T.S. (to the stars), became an official citizen of Planet Mirrorballus. And damn if it wasn’t a lovelier plane of alternate reality than I’d ever expected. The lights are much brighter there — you can forget all your troubles, forget all your cares, and bedazzle yourself in five different shades of crystal-studded bracelets…because the wardrobe department happens to have 10 billion of them lying around!
My visit continues today, but here are a few highlights of my liiiiiiiiiiiive experience so far. The asterisk/tilden combos are my textual approximation of “sequins and fringe,” with fringe clearly winning because it’s totally in motion. (Skip to page 4 of the recap if you’re itching to see the couples’ scores.)
*~*I arrived on set during dress rehearsal, so the hair and makeup trailers were abandoned. I took plenty of video footage of the mysterious bags of hair lining the floor — don’t worry! Look for a video diary of my ballroom voyage next week, in time for the liiiiiiiiive finale.
*~*As I was hanging out back waiting to tour wardrobe, Maks bounded outside and down the stairs with no shirt on. No joke. What, do you think I’d just invent a story wherein my publicist buddy and I waved at him, he recognized me from his brief stint as an EW.com intern, and trotted over for a (reminder: he was shirtless) hug and kiss? No, I would never do that! I’m proud to report this really happened, and that a spray tan on a man is so jarring, but truly a magical thing. He was warm, but dry, like a fan in heat. So technically, just like me.
*~*One of my main goals for part 2 of my visit, today, is to get Maks to welcome you to EW.com using only his ass. There is no reason this shouldn’t happen.
*~*Minutes before we went liiiiiiive, executive producer Conrad Green showed me into the planet’s central nervous system: The DWTS Control Room! Remember Aladdin’s cave? It was just like that. Gems piled everywhere, fringed fairies working the knobs, thousands of colored Swarovski crystal buttons dotting the walls like in Willy Wonka’s great glass elevator. No, just kidding, it was a bunch of normal-looking humans and dozens of TV screens. I believe more than one of them were British, and all were jaunty. But remember, DANCMSTRs, there can always be a gem heap in the corner if your brain wants it badly enough.
NEXT: A close encounter with the DANCMSTR kind