The show started with a ‘progress-so-far’ critique of each of the contestants. At first, I was irritated, thinking it was pointless, but the judges looked at some of the issues in detail, with slow-mo film to support what they were saying, which was interesting and useful. Yeah, okay, for the first couple it was interesting… then I got bored. It lasted almost half an hour! Why didn’t Watch just cut it?
Finally the contestants were introduced. Florence was wearing what looked like a dressing gown, which suggested she was going to pull it off to reveal something skimpy underneath. Sigh.
First out was Brandy and I was keen to see what angle they’d be going for in the VT this week – and it was the ups and downs in her relationship with Maks. So we’ve had ups, we’ve had downs, now we’ve had ups and downs. What next? They had the Friends theme and decided to embrace the idea of friendship. In the medium of the quickstep. And I enjoyed it. It was really good fun with some very cute moments and they genuinely seemed to be getting on, for once. “You’ve found the right formula,” Bruno said.
You won’t be shocked to hear that Florence danced to The Brady Bunch Theme. A tango. I know. And, yes, the first thing Corky did was pull her house coat off. But she didn’t have something skimpy underneath, just a gold ballgown. Remember in Strictly when Erin and Colin Jackson did that hideous dance with the dolls on their feet? That’s what Florence’s dancing reminds me of. Also, if they hadn’t said it was a tango, I wouldn’t have known it was a tango. The best thing about it was the little VT of the other contestants doing the nine squares thing from The Brady Bunch titles. “Why did you go into a rag doll mode?” Bruno asked. Carrie Ann called Florence “a sexy senior”. Len said parts of it were excellent. I must have missed those parts.
Kurt Warner quickstepped to the Bewitched theme. It was quite a tricky tune to dance to, I thought, but it was fun. Anna did a lot of the nose-wiggling and Kurt was charismatic as always, but I wasn’t sure about his posture. “I think I just saw the spirit of Gene Kelly enter the ballroom,” Carrie Ann said. Len wasn’t sure about Kurt’s posture either, but still said it was a great performance.
Audrina Patridge danced the rumba to the theme from The Hills, appropriately enough. I had no idea what the theme from The Hills was – turns out it was Unwritten by Natasha Bedingfield, which I rather love as a writing song. I didn’t love their rumba though. There were some nice moves and a bit of chemistry, but Audrina still looks like she’s looking to Tony for guidance. And she’s still a blank slate, personality-wise. “Don’t be plastic, be fantastic,” Bruno advised. Indeed.
Kyle Massey is my favourite, so I was looking forward to his foxtrot… to the Charlie’s Angels theme. Again, it was a really fun routine. I found it a bit disjointed – they kept stopping their foxtrot to do disco moves – but it still made me laugh. I do love him. Bruno said that just watching Kyle is a joy, but there wasn’t enough foxtrot content. Carrie Ann disagreed and said she liked the disco moves. Len said, “It started bad and it gradually got worse and worse.” And then his comments got worse and worse. He really didn’t like it. At all. He gave it a 5, which proves that his comments about how he scores were garbage since it was the choreography he didn’t like, not Kyle’s dancing.
Apparently I’ve started to fancy Rick Fox because when he said he was doing the rumba, I got a little frisson. (He’s also gone up in my estimation since I found out he’s living with Eliza Dushku. I don’t know what that says about me…) They danced to the Hill Street Blues theme and they were dressed as cops. Hubba. I really enjoyed it, but I wasn’t entirely convinced. But that may be because the rumba is so stupid. Carrie Ann really liked it, saying, “It should be a crime for you to look that hot and dance that well.” Len wasn’t entirely convinced, but Bruno said it was “mega-smooth.”
For their jive, Bristol Palin and Mark Ballas were dressed as gorillas. Can you guess what theme they were dancing to? “I think what the judges want to see is personality,” Mark told Bristol, failing to add, “sadly, you haven’t got one.” Instead he took Bristol to clown lessons, which was probably a good idea. I was thinking about how the acting lessons made such a difference to Matt Dawson on Strictly. And Bristol definitely did seem to have come out of her shell just a touch. In fact, at the very beginning, while they were still in full monkey costume (including heads) I thought she was selling it. But then she made a total balls-up of the routine. She missed loads of steps, she was out of time almost the whole way through, and it was just awful. Awful. It would have been poor for week one – for week five it was shocking. Len liked it. Len is losing it, clearly. Bruno said, “You tried to perform and it worked, but the technique went down the swanee.” She scored three sixes. I can’t believe Len scored it higher than Kyle. Ridiculous. For some reason, there isn’t a photo of them in their monkey suits on the website, so you’ll have to watch the whole dance instead. (The first comment made me laugh: “I don’t want to live on this planet anymore.”)
Jennifer Grey and Derek had a tiff. He was frustrated that she couldn’t get the steps and she got upset that he was snappish with her. They did the foxtrot to Love & Marriage. I don’t know what it’s the theme to and I don’t think they said. It was a cute routine and she’s clearly a brilliant dancer, but I’m afraid it didn’t do much for me. Bruno said it was beautiful. Carrie Ann said there were moments when Jennifer went blank. Len said the dance was lovely but too theatrical and not ballroom enough. Jennifer still seemed to be sulking in the post-dance interview, giving one word, snappy answers. Huh.
Again, I couldn’t stay up for the results, but Florence and Corky went out. Probably not the right result for this week – Bristol absolutely should have gone – but I’m not going to lose any sleep over it. Bristol out next week, please.
All photos from abc.