“Dancing with the Stars” video highlights (13.4)

In an absolutely uncalled-for assault on our psyches, Dancing with the Stars steps up the brutality this week with a theme of beloved movie scores. Be prepared to clutch your head and gnash your teeth.

As always, I will divide the performances into handy categories.

The Good

No surprises for our first two entries here. Ricki Lake and Derek Hough won the top score (again!) with a technically good but extremely weird dance to the theme from Psycho. You heard me.


Nothing says ballroom entertainment like creepy pursuit and a good stabbing, right?


J.R. Martinez and Karina Smirnoff had a blast dancing the foxtrot to the theme from The Pink Panther, including some dead-on butt choreography that zapped me right back to the Panther cartoon. Martinez stepped out in style in a top hat and pink tuxedo and Smirnoff celebrated by wearing a skirt made out of the very same Owens Corning fiberglass insulation that the Pink Panther used to endorse.



Once again, they’ve been inexplicably rated below Lake and Hough even though they danced just as well, if not better. It bothers me because it offends my sense of justice. And, also, because the fact that it bothers me means that some part of my brain cares about this show and must be destroyed.

As for our third couple in this category, we have a good news/bad news situation, and I want to ease you into it gently. The good news is that Hope Solo and Maksim Chmerkovskiy, who danced a foxtrot to “You’ve Got a Friend in Me” from Toy Story, did a great job and genuinely deserve to be in this category.

The bad news is that Solo is in weird, shapeless culottes. And, in a disturbing development, there is no midriff in sight. Just in case you were wondering about the source of the extensive lesbian riots that happened last night.



The Lackluster

Oh, dear, Chynna Phillips and Tony Dovolani had a tough week. They did a tango to the Mission: Impossible theme, and Phillips uncharacteristically lost her place. Instead of having fun and rolling with it, she froze up and got all stilted. You can see Dovolani try to coach her through it at least twice.


SCORE: 21 Harrumph. That oddly high mercy score seemed to be in deference to past performances rather than this one.

David Arquette is ever the loose cannon, isn’t he? I always feel tense when he and Kym Johnson are about to start because it’s equally possible that he’ll suddenly pull off a stunningly brilliant performance or that he’all climb up a curtain and go straight out the roof and into a spacecraft, you know?

He did’t do either of those things. But, on the upside, Johnson took over midriff duties. Well done.



The Delightful

I love Carson Kressly and Anna Trebunskaya so much on this show. They clearly know that the whole production lives in the magical, crazy land of Ridiculopolis, and they’re well aware that every performance is an unexpected gift and there may not be another. So they do exactly what they should do and have a silly, wonderful time. I hope they keep going.

Bonus: There is swordplay. And Carson looks oddly hot with pirate facial hair. I hope he considers it as a fashion second wind.



Chaz Bono and Lacey Schwimmer are back, and heavens to Betsey were they fun. They danced to “Gonna Fly Now” from Rocky, as they should. Go ahead and try to watch without getting all emotional. Good for you, Chaz.


SCORE: 21 Low for the group overall, but the highest score Chaz and Lacey have received yet. Nice.


The Destroyers of My Childhood Memories

Rob Kardashian and Cheryl Burke danced to the Superman theme, and as if that was’t enough, Kardashian word-blobbed about how it was perfect because he is just like Superman, except for the part where he’s never held a job or helped another human being in his life.

Other than that, though, it’s freaking eerie.


SCORE: 24, which was a travesty, because at that point in the show it made them tied for first place with Hope Solo and Maksim Chmerkovskiy. This may or may not have been the point when my building manager had to call upstairs to ask me to stop booing.

That majestic wailing sound composed of years of dramatic training swirled with pure agony and despair that rolled through the dark, empty sky last night was the sound of Brian Blessed keening over the fact that Nancy Grace has ruined Flash Gordon, one of my favorite awesome, stupid movies with a secretly great soundtrack, for ever and ever and ever.

I don’t even want to talk about it.


SCORE: 21 Well, at least we fully understand the nefarious plan now: Nancy Grace was sent by Ming the Merciless to crush our human spirits.

Don’t let her. Go forth and dance.