Watching Dancing with the Stars – May 24, 2010

The more I watch Dancing with the Stars this season, the more I realize I’m only watching to catch the same high I get whenever I watch televised coverage of the Scripps National Spelling Bee. At first, I always trick myself into thinking I’m actually drawn in by the spirit of competition and the satisfaction of victory through a healthy application of study, drive and focus.

But the real reason I like to watch the Scripps National Spelling Bee is to watch a bunch of odd ducks in ill-fitting outfits drop off the stage, one by one, like they’ve got tsetse flies swimming up their undies.

As its season has progressed, and we’ve bid farewell to the more embarrassing toe-talents in the competition, Dancing has sadly lost all its own versions of third grade lip-dribblers, self-touchers, runny nose heads, and lazy eyes… and along with it, my interest.

Shannen Doherty… your fumbling we barely knew. Kate Gosselin… please prance around the stage one last time in utter confusion and terror. Jake Pavelka… was the amount of times you tripped on the dance floor equal to, or more or less than, the amount of times you took off your shirt?
Ah, remember the good times?

The only thing Dancing has left to offer this season is that tiny inner circle of “savants” – those socially awkward, home-schooled pasty faces with facial tics who just keep spelling correctly – over and over – on and on – past prime time and bumping the local news into late night, endlessly employing that damn “silent e” rule to perfection until you wonder why you were ever rooting for them in the first place.

Erin Andrews, Evan Lycasek and Nicole Scherzinger take the stage tonight. All are comparable in talent (more or less), and are all paired with well-seasoned professionals who excel at hiding the deficiencies of their amateur partners.

I expected they’d all come off within reach of one another and that damn mirror ball trophy tonight.

And they did.

After all, we must have suspense until the absolute last minute.

But I don’t want suspense.  I want clumsy footwork, total ignorance of rhythm and ill-fitting costumes that show too much of Niecy Nash’s “jiggly parts.”

Ah, Neicy Nash.  I never missed my water ’til my well ran dry.

I need train wreck!

Bring on the next season of The Bachelorette… and fast!

Having said all that, props to Erin, Evan and Nicole. I’m sure they are working their tails off. And as far as the spelling bee plate-heads mentioned above, I would certainly have to count myself as part of their company. I couldn’t even get to the spelling bee county finals, much less anything that would ever be televised.

And, well,  as you can see, I wasn’t exactly the epitome of cool in my youth.
Read on, if you dare.

Erin Andrews & Maksim Chmerkovskiy are still coming off like they know they are destined for third place.  No ambition, lots of elementary hip-jiggling, and an overdose of going out of their way to embarrass the stodgy old judge Len Goodman for the sake of the cameras.  Yes, it was hot, but would it have been that hot without Erin’s next-to-nothing outfit?  Or wait… does anyone care about the answer to that question?  Hello?  May I get the word origin, please?

Second round was the freestyle.  Maks threw Erin around some college apartment furniture.  I can’t quite put my finger on it, but all season these two have not danced like champs.  They always seem to lack that “oh wow” moment even though they seem to build an “oh wow” moment into every single routine. I did like that Carrie Anne made a point of mentioning that it was not Maks’ strong suit to “make his partner look good.” Haha, Maks loves himself.  Has he ever won a season?  Does his ego turn voters off?

TOTAL FOR THE NIGHT: 55


Evan Lysacek and Anna Trebunskaya – Evan is really on his way to being a real-live boy! He started off with the Viennese waltz, to the tune of – gasp! –  “Piano Man” (because nothing screams Viennese waltz like Billy Joel).  But lots of props from the judges. Pinocchio really blew their minds.

But things went south for the little puppet made of pine during the freestyle.  The minute I heard the first few notes of “Footloose,” I self-proclaimed these two “runners-up.”  Don’t care how good they’ve been in the past.  Having to flail and bop around to any song by Kenny Loggins can’t help but scream, “high school musical.”

“Underwhelming… would you please use it in a sentence?”  Yikes, Evan and Anna were terribly underwhelming tonight!

I know these teams don’t have a say in the songs, and yes the crowd went wild afterwards, but come on.  The Little Rascals executed more joyful and sophisticated moves, and they were living through the Depression!

TOTAL FOR THE NIGHT: 52

Nicole Scherzinger & Derek Hough – The Bubble Gum Twins cannot be stopped.  But what do you call that weird move they ended their first dance with?  Some sort of “hands on a clock” thingy I can’t quite put my finger on.  It was hot, and yet kinda creepy and freak-like at the same time.  I was waiting for Len, Carrie Ann and Bruno to start chanting, “We accept her… we accept her… gooble gobble… one of US!”   Instead, they quibbled for the sake of the home audience, then of course gave the Twins stellar scores.

And the freestyle?  Well, is there any way these two can lose after tonight?  A slight slip at the end was excused in the face of their unmatched ambitious choreography (light years ahead of Maks and Erin). Love how Tom Bergeron rushed them over for their scores, warning “…or The Bachelorette starts late!”   Really, the only thing these two can do to blow it at this point is make their two dances tomorrow night tributes to the Budweiser Clydesdales.

A TOTAL OF 55 FOR THE NIGHT

And the winners? I think it’s clear. It’s for The Bubble Gum Twins to lose.

As for me, unless there’s some huge upset I hear about from the East Coast tomorrow evening, I’m checking out here. I’m digging on all the surprisingly gripping corporate shenanigans happening on the unfortunately titled The Good Wife, and that finale is up against the second hour of Stars tomorrow. Frankly, I can do without two more hours of heel-kicking savants until next season.

But I will be back next season.

See you there!

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