Since it looks like my talent for procrastination knows no bounds and news of the winner is by now as stale as the entire season was, I've decided to take some liberties with the finale episode of Dancing With The Stars. Not that I haven't been taking liberties all this time but I just feel the need to point out that I am nothing if not consistent. Yay, me! Two tedious hours await of what was perhaps the most disastrously tedious season of this show to date. I promise I'll try not to bore you to tears.
The show intro threatens a veritable buffet of cheap filler: everything from Whitney Houston, who is here to croon her latest, to dances by all the eliminated Z-listers – be afraid, be very afraid! - to the big finale dance-off and the inevitable big trophy moment. Don't get me wrong, I adore filler. Filler is fantastic because filler can be cut and after I cut all the fat from this show this may just end up being my shortest recap to date.
As all these losers march down the stairs and fill up the dance floor, it suddenly strikes me that I have no idea who half of these people are. Were they really on the show? All 6789 pairs of them? Amazing. After a 5 minute recap of Monday night's action, I get my first chance to excise a good 10 minutes from the show because Whitney is here to sing her new single called Million dollar bill but curiosity makes me pause before fast forwarding. I quickly regret my brief moment of weakness when it turns out that Whitney is singing some sort of standard vanilla pop song in a strained, raspy voice. But, hey, it's raining fake dollar bills on the floor and the male dancers are grabbing their crotches so it's not so bad. And we all know how ABC just adores anything even remotely sexual.
Next stop: Loserville
Remember the Losers' Club bit from earlier in the season? I vaguely remember recapping the episode that featured this gem, therefore I won't bother with it again. Jeffrey Ross – who the hell is this guy? - then shows up to induct Ashley Hamilton into this special, special club after which Ashley has one last chance to dance with Edyta. Well, dance may be an exaggeration given that Edyta is wearing about two yards of sequined fringe and does all the hard work. But there is some fun when Ashley and Jeffrey end up dancing together around the floor and baring their chests in good gratuitous DWTS fashion right at the end of this masterfully lame number. Things degenerate further when Ashley vaults over the judge's table to plant a wet one on Len then on Bruno. Glad to see that ABC is finally warming up to male-on-male kissing in prime time.
Moving on. Looks like more horrors await as some past big time losers are here to strut their stuff again and attempt to send us all into fits of laughter. Regrettably, I will not be able to recap their moments of glory due to my extreme sensitivity to very bad dancing. But I will condescend to mention their names because I'm not wholly bad.
Twenty-two minutes into this wonder and Tom and Samantha insist that we need to take a look back at the previous weeks of competition lest we all missed something. Watching the action while I'm fast forwarding it isn't actually that bad. I highly recommend doing this. The sweet nostalgia recap is followed by more loser showcases set to the aptly titled Who's that lady?. Katy, Macy and Debi all attempt to simulate ballroom dancing. It is painful.
A hog of a good time
Every season there's some drama which gives ABC a chance to highlight how incredibly perilous ballroom dancing really is. On some seasons people fainted, people pulled muscles, people fractured bones. Serious stuff! This season, well, this season they got the flu. Cue long segment about how difficult the whole season was and how incredibly taxing it is to dance with a face mask. This is immediately followed by a bit with shirtless Maks massaging Miss Piggy backstage then Tom DeLay making another revolting appearance dancing some cowboy number with Cheryl. I'm glad ABC is grouping them by species.
This awesome trip down memory lane that nobody really cares about continues with Chuck and Mark back for another round of martial arts inspired shenanigans after which Natalie and Melissa get their chance to dance again. An incredible 55 minutes of show time have been wasted so far on practically nothing at all. Must be some sort of record. And I managed to write 780 words about all that absolute nothingness. I rock!
Save the last dance
Everyone rejoice! We're finally into the second hour of the show and the three finalists make an appearance. Kelly, Mya and Donny – did you notice they all have the letter “y” in their names? - are left in the competition and before either can walk away with that coveted cheap trophy, there's going to be some more dancing.
Kelly and Louis repeat their Viennese Waltz set to Trouble which is as sweet as I remember it but Kelly is wearing that same matronly blue dress she did the first time which is unfortunate. But, hey, LaToya Jackson is in the audience so... Len can barely speak as the audience erupts into a spontaneous “Kelly” chant, Bruno says she's a ballroom princess and Carrie Ann says she was touched.
Mya and Dimitri reprise their Jive which I haven't see the first time around. Or have I? Can't recall. It's energetic and fun and the audience is on their feet. Bruno says she's got it all, Carrie Ann praises her grace and technique while Len says she's fantastic.
The last dance of the night – hopefully! - belongs to Donny and Kym who bring back their Argentine Tango routine. Is it bad that I can't remember this dance either? I either have some sort of extreme amnesia or this whole season has been one continuous blur of unremarkable non-moments. On the positive side, Donny knows how to scowl. The audience applause is loud but there is no rousing chant. Carrie Ann babbles on about their artistry and emotion, Len says they finished strong while Bruno believed Donny in this dance.
Now that we're finally done with the lot of them, the judges pretend to work hard at ranking these last dances from first to last, with first place receiving 30, second place 28 and third place 26 points which are then added to each couples their scores from show night while audience scores will count for half the final score. Capisce? The rankings are Kelly, 26 points, Mya, 28 points and Donny, 30 points. Well, that settles that, I guess.
With about 35 minutes to waste before we can all bid adieu to this turkey of a season, we finally find out why Donny was really on this season of Dancing. Why, it was so he could perform his incredibly sexy new single hot off the 1970 charts called Puppy Love. Not even [b]Louie and Chelsie/b]'s return to the dance floor can persuade me to stick around for this bloody horror so I'm quickly fast forwarding before I lose my hearing. Sorry.
What else is there to suffer through before we're finally set free from the bondage of this season? Why Michael Irvin wants to beat Jerry Rice in a head-to-head dance-off! Yay! Or not. They square off with a Paso Doble set to the NFL theme music. It's so bad that it's almost good but still not good enough to watch. Who will win the coveted mirror ball championship ring and why should we care? The answer to the first part of the question is Michael and he proudly kisses his new cheesy ring. However, Jerry has the better bod so he gets a ring too! Why am I watching this crap again?
After the obligatory commercial, Aaron and Karina dance the Quickstep to the Muppet Show theme. Oddly enough, I find this bit the most entertaining so far, mostly because I like Karina's full feather skirt. Continuing with the Muppet theme, Miss Piggy puts in an appearance too after which for some reason Cloris Leachman, Jerry Springer, Joanna Kruppa and Steve Wozniak reunite with their partners for a hot mess of a Mambo dance-off that resembles the Mambo dance-off from earlier in the season not at all. Cloris, Jerry, Steve are, uhmm, voted off which leaves Joanna and Derek the big winners. They celebrate by throwing in a certain protracted head-in-the-crotch signature move that apparently is safe enough for a dancing show on ABC but not safe enough for a music awards show on ABC. To top it all off, Samantha sweetly admonishes that “there are kids watching”. Ain't that just dandy?!
Fifteen minutes more of this drivel and we're all home free. Whitney is back with a pathetic version of I wanna dance with somebody. To say it is horrifically bad would be a gross understatement. This hot mess is barely saved by the pros who put on a show while poor Whitney is trying to catch her breath. But at least she sings live, so that's a positive. Maybe.
Finally, we get to the point after one hour and fifty whole minutes of pure boredom. Kelly is kicked to the curb amid another audience chant, leaving Mya and Donny as the final two. After paying the bills with some commercials, this sick ride comes to a painful but merciful end when Donny Osmond is declared the winner of the cheesy mirror ball trophy which he will, no doubt, proudly take back to share with his doll-loving sister – whom he drags onto the floor with him - and the other 1748 closest members of his family. Dare we hope none of the others have any Ballroom aspirations? I'm not sure I can stomach another Osmond on my TV for this long.
And with that I'm off to take a thecouple of extra strength Tylenol and to fill out an application to be first in line in case memory readjustment procedures become available in my lifetime. Thanks to my partner in recapping crime, MotherSister and thanks for reading.