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'Dancing with the Stars' recap, Trouble in Jersey?

DanceBeyonceNicole Polizzi

I miss one week and there was "Game of Thrones" shenanigans and they didn't kick anybody off? I can't turn my back on the mirror ball for a second.

Tonight starts with a pros/troupe routine that has a song my parents probably hated and a lot of neon. So, a total miss for the entire Watts family.

Brooke is wearing what appears to be lace accented with electrical tape. I double-dog-dare her to try and sit down in that thing.  Tom Bergeron says that next week's guest judge will be Cher. I. Cannot. Wait. That's going to be a hoot. Cher's at both the age and point in her career where she says WHATEVER she thinks. It's marvelous to behold.

Elizabeth Berkley Lauren & Val Chmerkovskiy

Quickstep

Elizabeth & Val got a perfect score last week. Val is pushing her really hard during rehearsals, because he thinks she has tremendous potential. She gets it and doesn't seem to be upset with him.

There's some weird business at the beginning with a "DWTS News" bit and a "War of the Worlds" reference. When the music starts, it seems more like a jive song than a quickstep. Huh?

Len says it was "full of content," even if they lost body contact occasionally. Bruno blathers. Carrie Ann says Elizabeth is making the transition from jazz dancer to ballroom dancer.

Judges' Scores: Carrie Ann: 9; Len: 9; Bruno: 9

Brant Daugherty & Peta Murgatroyd

Jive

Oh yay. Peta & Brant doing the pretty girl/nerd thing. STOP IT.

The jive always looks like such a workout. I get tired just watching it. My cabana boy has to fan me with the fronds EVEN FASTER.

Oh NO! Brant rips off Peta's top skirt and doesn't fling it far enough away and subsequently trips on it during a later move.

Bruno liked how much jive content they packed into the routine but points out they lost timing a couple of times. Carrie Ann says she likes seeing a "hot, hunky guy" being funny. I think Carrie Ann and my mom may be the only people alive who still say "hunky." Carrie Ann says that she thought the routine may have been a touch too challenging for Brant, but that he did really well with it anyway. Len liked that he challenged himself.

Judges' Scores: Carrie Ann: 9; Len: 9; Bruno: 9

Brant says, "After I slipped on the skirt, I thought the whole thing was over. It's a metaphor for my life, really." Please, please, please, can we hire him to replace Brooke? He's at least as pretty as she is and smarter and funnier.

Leah Remini & Tony Dovolani

Salsa

Oh dear. They're out of sync from the very beginning. This is not good. Also, Leah is wearing some SERIOUS support hose. Even my 96-year-old grandmother might go for something a little more sheer.

Carrie Ann says she's in the zone and says they looked like the hottest salsa dancers on the floor of the hottest salsa clubs. Len loved it, but says some of the lifts could be a little cleaner. Leah looks utterly befuddled throughout Bruno's comments. Tom quips that Bruno "speaks better with a paddle." Cheeky, Tom.

Judges' Scores: Carrie Ann: 9; Len: 8; Bruno: 9

Jack Osbourne & Cheryl Burke

Jive

Jack is suffering from MS-related fatigue during rehearsals, but he's determined to push through it to perform.

It took me forever to figure out that they're dancing to a Canned Heat song. Len says Jack has great musicality and is light on his feet. He'd like Jack to have been a little sharper and to watch his arms -- he flings them some time. Bruno repeats pretty much everything Len says. Carrie Ann loved it and thought it was done to perfection.

Judges' Scores: Carrie Ann: 10; Len: 8; Bruno: 9

Carrie Ann got so excited waving around the 10 paddle that she broke it. Tom gives it to Jack as a souvenir.

Back from commercial break, four female dancers are wearing skintight pants, bustiers and cat ears.

ecause, Halloween.

Amber Riley & Derek Hough

Paso Doble

Amber is struggling with the dance and Derek is struggling with an injury. He's also dealing with a dumb hat. One of these things is easy to fix.

Eeeeeee!!! They're dancing to a song I love, "Diablo Rojo" by Rodrigo y Gabriela. Which was just used in Season 14. Huh. Have they recycled a song that quickly before? Amber's fierce in this routine, just killing the footwork and the attitude.

Bruce says it was full of depth and flavor, but sometimes she needs to pull her shoulders back just a tad. Carrie Ann gestures her bracelet off her arm and gesticulates more wildly than Bruno. What's gotten into her tonight? Len is excited too.

Judges' Scores: Carrie Ann: 10; Len: 10; Bruno: 9

That's weird to have Bruno be the non-10. I'm too lazy to see if that's ever happened before, but I'd bet against it.

Bill Engvall & Emma Slater

Quickstep

This slowed down version of "Viva Las Vegas" is making this dance more of a SedatelyPacedStep. Everything about it looks so careful and measured, when the quickstep is supposed to look reckless.

Carrie Ann says, "The good news is, you didn't break hold." But the bad news is that the hold wasn't strong enough. Len says it had speed, because Len must be going blind. Bruno does note a couple of missed steps.

Judges' Scores: Carrie Ann: 8; Len: 7; Bruno: 8

Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi & Sasha Farber

Samba

Nicole plans to channel Beyonce for the first part of her samba. Her version of Beyonce may be different than everyone's on the planet. Nicole is tired from travel and dealing with a sick kid and says her brain is "scrambled eggs"

Ha! For the bumper into commercial before Nicole and Sasha dance, the band reprises "Viva Las Vegas" and the judges all stand up behind the judging table and dance. I love it. More judge dancing!

It's not bad, but something's off. Every now and then, Nicole has legs like a baby deer, tentative and shaky looking.

Len points out that she did have trouble with her feet during the promenades at the beginning. Bruno says she was shaky at the start, but once she got into it it, was better. Carrie Ann points out that Nicole is ahead of the beat quite often.

Judges' Scores: Carrie Ann: 9; Len: 9; Bruno: 9

Corbin Bleu & Karina Smirnoff

Cha cha

Karina & Corbin are struggling with choreography originally, because they are futzing around with brooms.  Stay away from the props, Karina, after a week with bad judges' scores. They're changing choreography until the very last minute.

I like this routine - it's fun and energetic. Bruno loved it, too, calling it immaculate and brilliant. Carrie Ann says it was the tightest cha cha she's seen. Len is not a lover of the "gyratery." But he said it fit with the music and didn't go on too long.

Judges' Scores: Carrie Ann: 10; Len: 9; Bruno: 10

Team Dances

Apparently, right now, with scores from last week and this week and viewer votes, the pair that would be eliminated is on "Spooky Bom Bom." This team is Elizabeth & Val, Nicole & Sasha, Bill & Emma and Leah & Tony. I don't love the name, but it's worth it to to hear the British announcer say "Team Spooky Bom Bom."

Nicole shows off her former cheerleader chops with some tumbling in this routine. Each couple gets a little spotlight moment. Leah and Elizabeth are both wearing tiny hats. I approve of tiny hats. Bill & Emma attempt some impressive lifts. It's also hilarious to see Bill doing Wade Robson-style hip thrusts. At the end of the routine, Nicole gets in a cheerleading toss, caught by Sasha, Tony and Val.

Len thought the bits for individuals were good and the couple spotlight moments were good as well. Nicole gets singled out for praise. Carrie Ann calls Bill the glue that held that performance together.

Judges' Scores: Carrie Ann: 9; Len: 9; Bruno: 9

Team "Foxing Awesome" (name inspired by a tattoo on Jack's chest -- this explains, among other reasons, why we're unlikely to ever see him perform shirtless) is Jack & Cheryl, Amber & Derek, Brant & Peta and Corbin & Karina. The girls are in bunny costumes and the boys are in tuxedos, with foxtails hanging out of their pants. This song is terrible -- I'm glad I've never heard it before tonight.

Oh, wait, apparently the girls are foxes too, now that I see their fox tails. Oh, my. Now Jack comes out in a full fox costume. And then the other guys come out in fox costumes. Bill's earlier comment in rehearsal footage about them looking like their costumes were from a children's play makes more sense now.

Bruno says it was clever and inventive and the choreography gave him goosebumps. He says Corbin killed it. Carrie Ann thinks she was on an acid trip. The group says that was their intention. Len says it was full of little touches that made it irresistible.

Judges' Scores: Carrie Ann: 10; Len: 10; Bruno: 10

Whatever. I liked Spooky Bom Bom better.

Tom then announces that all members of Team Foxing Awesome are safe.


Scores

Combined scores from last week and this week.

Couple

Last week,
Individual Score

Last week,
Switch-off Score

This week,

Individual Score

This week,

Team Score

Total

Percent of

total

Amber & Derek

28

4

29

30

91

13.5%

Brant & Peta

28

3

27

30

88

13,1%

Elizabeth & Val

30

2

27

27

86

12.8%

Corbin & Karina

23

4

29

30

86

12.8%

Jack & Cheryl

25

2

27

30

84

12.5%

Nicole & Sasha

27

3

27

27

84

12.5%

Leah & Tony

27

1

26

27

81

12%

Bill & Emma

23

1

23

27

74

11%

Elimination:

There are four couples up on stage. Elizabeth & Val are revealed as safe immediately. Leah & Tony are the next to be declared safe. Bill & Emma and Nicole & Sasha are the two couples left. Nicole is eliminated and Bill & Emma are both visibly shocked.

Brooke has to keep admonishing Nicole & Sasha to come down for their exit interview. Nicole is taking it really, really hard. She doesn't have the showbiz polish to hide her feelings. If anything, I'm guessing "Jersey Shore" encouraged being as demonstrative as possible.

They show us a quick shot of Bill's wife in the audience, she's wiping away a tear and mouthing something to Bill. I think Bill is gratified and overwhelmed at his obvious fan support. Looking at how the couples split the judges' vote, it's clear that Bill had to have had at least 1.5% more fan votes than Nicole. That seems plausible.

Predictions:

Sorry, Leah. I think the Engvall Juggernaut takes you down next week.

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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