October 12, 2020
Oh, it’s 80s night and I’m feeling right, sung to the tune of Ladies Night. We have entered the Land of Mullets.
I’m not even going to get into TB’s costume changes, other than how many times did she change? Such a waste of their budget.
I liked two of the judges’ clothes choices. The deep colored dress suited Carrie Ann. Now if she’d just ditch the pan-fried hair. I’m not sure what Derek was going for, but I’m pretty sure he missed the mark. It was just odd. Bruno won the night, totally rocking the Gay Miami Vice look.
I have to wonder if there is any rhyme or reason to the dance styles they do. I mean, four tangos in one night? And jazz? OMG
Let’s just get this out of the way. There were three disqualifications right off the top. Jazz is not a ballroom dance (noticed I used my indoors voice) and will not be sanctioned. Most offensive was Justina and Sasha. There was no dancing. It looked like an aerobics class to me. It lacked fun, grace or dance. So disappointing since she’s usually one of my top three. I noticed that Derek only talked in generalities about this stage of the competition, never actually talking about what they did. Bruno just perved on Sasha’s pectorals. Conehead Carrie Ann just dithered with her fried hair. Maybe they were all thinking what I was thinking and didn’t want to admit that the emperor had no clothes.
Skai and Alan, and it’s me, not her. I just don’t like her. Probably not her fault, I just wish she’d go away. And take Tyra with her. Their faux dance was midway between the Justina/Sasha mess and Jeannie and Brandon. It had lots of flashy, ballsy lifts but that was about it. Throughout the first half it looked like they were stepping tentatively as if their feet hurt. By about the third lift the tentativeness was gone but she still kept pulling odd faces. And where’d they dig up Alan’s wig? It didn’t look like Doc; it looked like Martha Washington.
As for Jeannie and Brandon, now that was a performance I could get into. It was fun, frisky and had real dance elements. Everything the other two weren’t.
I’m having trouble deciding the worst actual ballroom dance of the night. I’ve got it down to two couples. One was Nelly and Daniella’s attempt at samba. It had nice samba content as the judges noted. Unfortunately, Nelly did not have nice samba content. Samba has an unusual beat that no one wants me to bore them explaining and Nelly must have checked out on that conversation also. He hit the beat some of the times and was completely off some of the time. He had a great time, smiling up a storm and doing inventive footwork (just not samba footwork) but it just didn’t work. He has no flexibility in his hips and makes me afraid I’ll dance like that after my spine fusion next week. I don’t know what happened with the judges. They were way too generous.
But I guess honors for the worst of the night has to go to Vernon and Peta. What a mess! It looked like he got in her way during the first move and she stumbled. They never got it back together. He was definitely scary looking with all the dreads. He was a ringer for Laurent, the black vampire in Twilight (Yes, I watched Twilight. I’m a Jacob fan. Edward was just gross). It lacked grace and poise and he just looked like a surly stumblebum vampire. Too bad; I like Vernon. And of course Peta isn’t going to let us get away without a few crotchshots. No comment.
And speaking of tango, there were three, count ‘em, three more. Bottom of that pileup was Jesse and Sharna. I so wanted Jesse to do well because he’s with Sharna. It just wasn’t happening. He opened a bit wooden, it seemed there was no mental connection between them. Once in frame he got better, but near the end he seized up again. And the emotion he was projecting was more paso doble anger than tango burn. I don’t know what he’s done as an actor, but must have been soaps. They don’t know the difference between anger, burn or chew the scenery melodrama.
The judges reversed the last two tangos from what I thought they deserved. Kaitlyn and Artem did something that would have given Len a coronary. First was all that freaking jumping around before the dance and then ending it with stiff 35-year-old white girl trying to bust a b-move? What tango they did was good, but not as good as what I expect from Artem. He’s about to be dethroned as my favorite male pro over this. And when did he get so bow legged? And wasn’t their song, “I Think We’re Alone Now” from the 60s? Yes, talentless Tiffany covered it in the 80s but that doesn’t make it 80s music any more than the Boston Pops’ cover of Blue Danube makes it modern music.
The tango of tangos was Monica and Val. I need to take up smoking so I can have a cigarette after something like that. Wow. What she did was pretty good, but Val was a force to be reckoned with. When that man gets his tango on, everybody just stand back. It was a no holds barred smackdown. Some of his moves left me gasping. From when they fired guns over each others’ shoulders (with sexy body rolls) to their hair-raising race to the finish I was just hanging on. Yeah, love me some Tainted Love.
There were a couple of also rans. Chrishell and Gleb stumbled through a messy cha cha. She either missed or dragged on nearly every step. Those baggy pants never made anyone look good and did no favor to her hips. And for the record, Gleb looks awful in a mullet.
AJ and Cheryl surprised me. I liked their waltz. It was weirdly credible from someone who looked like he was about to spew through the entire dance. He just looked soooo uncomfortable. He had all the right elements, but I just kept expecting him to stop, bend over, and lose his cookies. But Cheryl pulled him through, demonstrating once again that she is the mistress of the faux lead. She is always the first female pro to make it look like her partner is leading. Probably my favorite thing about her. I’d like to bring up a complaint here. Why do, when the dancers do any kind of spiral move, the camera is intent on spiraling around them in the other direction? It’s distracting and disorienting. It screws with the perceived speed of the move and makes me dizzy. I’m the one in danger of losing his cookies.
Once again they ended the show with wham bam show stopping performances. Johnny and Britt kept the fabulosity alive with a wild contemporary. I know contemporary isn’t ballroom but I’ve grandfathered it in when they actually look like they’re dancing. At least they weren’t wearing their jammies. But it was hard and soft and emotional and lyrical and just grabbed me. Bruno described it perfectly even though he screwed up the perfect score.
My favorite of the night actually got low scores. Shoot the judges. Nev and Jenna continue to surprise me every week. Okay, we’ve found out now that he’s a ringer, he used to take dance classes. But then, so many of them have. And he had the weird eyes even as a little kid, too. I’m an 80s nerd and love a-Ha and immediately perked up for the quickstep. They were perfectly in sync and no one even talked about the great jete. They had so much fun, it was just infectious (in a non-Covid way). Definitely my fave of the night. As Bruno said, it was exuberant.
I loved the music for every performance, but then, I’m an 80s guy. Probably the last decade they made decent music.
Unfortunately, I think they made the right choice in dumping Jesse. He just wasn’t cutting it.
Nelly, Vernon and Chrishel need to go next. I’m afraid we’re stuck with Skai because the judges think she’s precious. They are still impressed with her shameless pandering about her dead friend. Kaitlyn will stay around because of Bachelor nation. Justina outclasses Jeannie but neither may make it to the end. I want a smackdown between Nev and Johnny. Now that would be entertainment.