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We’re in Week 2, and so far there have been no major injuries, death threats, or calls for a boycott! What kind of season is this? Tonight, the dancers get a chance to build on their scores (and their fanbases) from last week, before someone goes home tomorrow. Our stars will be dancing the Jive and the Quickstep – two of the least sexy dances ever. So how are our couples going to keep things interesting on the floor tonight?

That’s right, MIME! Actually, Mark just felt extra pretty tonight. Just be glad he’s not taking cues from Mike, and is keeping his pants on. Here we go!

Sucker Punch

Sugar Ray has some ground to make up from a slow start last week. But Anna gives him some good news: for the Jive, he can forget all that malarkey the judges fed him about good posture. She’s even going to work some boxing moves into the routine! This makes it even funnier when Ray takes his first tumble of the season during rehearsal. He may need a mouth guard by week 3...

Dancing to “Sweet Soul Music” and decked out in bright purple, Ray has decided to simply have fun out there, and it shows. The precision still isn’t there, but the charm and energy are there times ten. However, Len shocks the couple and the crowd by warning Ray that he may be in jeopardy tomorrow night. Anna stands by her man and fires a shot back, but Bruno and Carrie Ann basically agree that Ray is dancing too close to the ropes. 6 + 5 + 6 = 17 points (Combined with last week’s score: 34 points total)

Kate Plus Eight (inches)

Kendra wowed the judges last week (possibly because their expectations were set so low to begin with), but Louis doesn’t want to rest on one good pity score. He vows to transform slack-jawed tomboy Kendra into a refined, elegant Quickstepper of the female persuasion. It’s an uphill battle, and eventually Kendra gets frustrated and sits down, paralyzed in a Gosselinesque “Why me?” trance. Here comes the water works…can Louis salvage anything from this train wreck?

On the dance floor, the pulsating beat of Amerie’s “Gotta Work” pushes them forward. Kendra seems to be getting most of the steps, but the way Louis is charging like a bull, and Kendra holding on for dear life with an eerie smile frozen on her face, you would think this was a hostage situation. Once it ends, Tom immediately reassures her that she is, indeed, a girl. Bruno is fairly honest, but Carrie Ann kisses Playboy butt, and Len is amused enough to use the word “chesticles.” 7 + 6 + 6 = 19 (37 total)

Psycho kisser, qu'est-ce que c'est

Cinderella Meets Goofy

Poor little Mark Ballas. Julianne is long gone, Derek is playing hooky, and his father Corky has been placed back in the cedar closet until Shirley Jones agrees to do the show. What’s a lonely boy to do? Why, put on a clown face and ham it up, of course! In other words, nothing’s changed. Fearful that his partner (Chelsea, this season’s export from the Disney Channel factory) may go down hard, he decides to spice up their Jive with lots of props and non-traditional moves. You know, because this has worked so well in the past. Chelsea just smiles through the fear and comes along for the ride, although you can tell she’s secretly hoping Mom will come early to pick her up. What will come of this?

I’m still not sure. In costume, they look like a cross between Alice and the Mad Hatter, and Shirley Temple and every mime you’ve ever shoved out of your way in the park. There’s a lot of bouncing, and some breakdancing, and many surprised expressions. A few Jive steps seem to have been kept in the routine as well. Once again, Mark has devised a dance that slays the crowd and makes him look good, but leaves his poor forgotten partner in the dust. Only Bruno drools over Mark the routine. In other words, nothing has changed. 6 + 5 + 7 = 18 (39 total)

Momma Knows the Flying Forearm Smash

Wrestling legend Chris Jericho -- the man whose rivalry with Shawn Michaels got so heated that he nearly put Shawn’s eye out, and even once threw a punch that missed Shawn but decked his wife -- is totally afraid of taskmaster Cheryl. He’s so in awe of her that he calls himself names while she teaches him steps, and is often inspired to spout Middle Earth poetry when praising her name. That’s our Cheryl!

How does all this prime-time-friendly S&M translate to their Quickstep, you ask? Quite well¸ all factors considered. (These factors include the reality that Chris’ muscled inner thighs have not touched without having an opponent’s head between them in decades.) While his feet still don’t always go in the right direction, he performs all the steps that Mistress Cheryl commands of him, and smiles like a birthday boy the whole time. Is it the Gershwin tune, or is Cheryl just that scary? The crowd leaps to their feet, Len proclaims the dance bright and breezy, Bruno says something about discipline that borders on begging, and Carrie Ann stammers her usual bubbly stammer. Back in the Star Tank, a beaming Chris proclaims Cheryl to be the Dancing Yoda. 8 + 7 + 8 = 23 (42 total)

Let’s Get Small

Petra and Dmitry are faced with an almost insurmountable problem in learning the Jive: Petra’s too damned tall! Also, she’s afraid of all the impending jumps and flips. A quick-thinking Dmitry pulls a trampoline out of his pocket, and Petra bounces her way to bliss. Sadly, he has no other pocket tools that can shrink her.

The band launches into the opening chords of Queen’s “Crazy Little Thing Called Love” as Petra seems to hesitate and misstep her way down the lower stairs to meet her leather-clad partner on the floor. Petra remains stiff during all the kicks and acrobatics, but a quick-thinking Dmitry plants her tush on the judges’ desk, right in Len’s face. Bruno lends constructive criticism, Carrie Ann is too in lust to form sentences, and Len manages to make Petra smile and beam while trashing her technique. The old man’s got game... 6 + 6 + 6 = 18 (36 total)

Slim-Fast Quickstep

According to Kirstie, learning the Quickstep is like forever catching a train. Maks refuses to let up though, and drills her until she finally matches his warp speed on the floor. But he also takes time to reassure her when she asks if this dance is just as hard for ‘skinny’ girls to learn. The discussion turns to her weight and how it affects her self-esteem. Maks promises that a good Quickstep will shed 20 pounds, to which Kirstie sheens, “Yay. Winning!”

"I'm Koo Koo for the Quickstep!"

It’s showtime, and the good news is that Kirstie & Maks manage to do the impossible this week – they project some genuine sensuality and chemistry on the floor, culminating in a spontaneous kiss at the end of the dance. Whatever their flaws, their “connection” as Carrie Ann calls it, is unstoppable. Len calls the dance good-not-great, and Bruno is supportive. 7 + 6 + 7 = 20 (43 total)

Is This Thing On?

Mike presents Lacey with flowers to apologize for being such an awkward failure last week, and he vows to wow with this week’s Jive. In rehearsal, he does seem to show more aptitude for the Jive’s kicks and finger wags. Could he possibly save himself this week?

Mike starts out to “The Boys Are Back in Town” with a guitar strapped to his chest, and from there he shows more energy and enthusiasm than last week. He remembers most of the things Lacey taught him, but his lack of natural ability shows in every step not meticulously mapped out by his partner. His arms don’t know what to do without instruction, and when he’s not holding Lacey, his natural instinct is to mug rather than move. The judges see improvement but note his wild, erratic tendencies. Lacey smiles the smile of someone who knows she’s about to have more free time. 6 + 5 + 6 = 17 (30 total)


Romeo showed a lot of potential last week, but he really needs to focus more on dancing and less on Chelsie. He makes her feel his abs, he makes her kiss his bicep. He even seems to prepare to hump her leg when she insists he talk to the hand, and start learning how to be a gentleman. It will come in handy during their Quickstep, where leg-humping is decidedly frowned upon. Chelsie’s Charm School is open for business, and it’s all about posture, grace and dignity. Will she make a dent?


Chelsie plays up the romance by creating a prom theme for Romeo, who missed some traditions like prom while building his career. They certainly look elegant, and Romeo shows promise once again, although the kid and the hound dog still make their presence known here and there. The judges encourage him to build on what’s he’s already learned, because he could be a contender. 7 + 8 + 8 = 23 (42 total)

The Boys Are Packed in Gown

Wendy, Wendy, Wendy…will you ever fly? As Tony tries to teach her the Quickstep, she is finding her…endowment…to be even more intrusive than last week. As Tony teaches her the correct posture, she finds that things are falling more into place (ahem), and she’s able to feel a little less self-conscious. Which is great, but is she getting the dance down during all these affirmations?

Yes and no. She certainly remembers her posture during what must be the 56th rendition of Basement Jaxx’s “Do Your Thing,” but the vague Depression-era theme to their costumes and props doesn’t really add to the dancing. She shows more signs of life than last week, and is starting to get the idea of portraying a character. But she suffers from the same problem as Kirstie in that she runs out of gas before the dance is over. The judges try to keep her spirits up. 6 + 5 + 6 = 17 (31 total)

Harry Potter and the Neurotic Dad

Newly-minted golden boy Ralph is finding the Jive more difficult to learn than last week’s Fox Trot, and he can’t seem to get out of his own head. So, he and Karina decide to invite his wife of 23 years(!) and teenage kids(!!) to rehearsal to give him all the good and bad news at once.

"Kick-steppo Patronum!"

Son Daniel waves his wand of encouragement, and daughter Julia gives him some tips. Ralph gets the boost he needed, and digs in again. As we watch the live dance, Ralph impresses once again, although his eagerness to please seems to detract a little from his command of the routine. Nice finish, though! Len gets booed for telling the truth. 7 + 7 + 7 = 21 (45 total, and the lead)

Strike a pose! (OW!)

The first sort-of injury of the season is revealed, as Hines’ football-ravaged shoulders can’t seem to hold the rigid pose required for the Quickstep for longer than a minute. You wouldn’t know it on the dance floor though, as he and Kym perform a thoroughly charming routine that flies by¸ leaving us wanting more. (He’s truly lucky to have Kym as a partner; she really knows how to put the whole package together.) Bruno finally shows some excitement, Carrie Ann is reduced to making airplane noises with her lips, and Len sums things up with a “Well done!” 8 + 7 + 8 = 23 (44 total)

Tomorrow night, someone will get shown the door, and I’m not just talking about musical guest Chris Brown! Hide your breakables and check back here tomorrow for the results recap!

"If I stand very still, maybe it will just sniff me and crawl away..."