Skating with Celebrities 1/23 Recap: Blame it on the FauxFro
Welcome to another episode of Skating with Celebrities! I know, you swore you weren’t going to watch this show. It’s okay, you’re not alone. This show is like Video Crack (patent pending). Last week, we saw our pairs in their first performances. Some were better than others, but all of them did better than I would do, which is the litmus test for everything. If I can’t do it, it is way hard and that person is brilliant. This is my world view and it works for me.
This week's episode opens as our hosts, Scott Hamilton and Summer Sanders welcome us to the show. Standing side-by-side, they look like a set of mismatched salt and pepper shakers. You know, like when you can’t find the little gnome pepper to go with the gnome salt, so you end up with the Statue of Liberty pepper instead? Okay, maybe that’s just me. News flash: Scott’s still excited. Like 25 Lattes excited. Scott and Summer go over the current standings and tell us that the goal for the teams is to avoid elimination. The team with the lowest score this week (combined with last week’s score) will be going home.
In each episode, the teams must add a new skill to their routine. Last week, it was a spin of at least 3 revolutions. This week, the teams have to perform synchronized footwork that must cover at least half the length of the ice. Because last week’s “Music From the Movies” theme wasn’t cheesy enough, this week’s theme is Disco. Next week’s theme: “Disney’s Best Love Songs” *falls to ground praying this will not be true*
Before I go any further, I need to reveal a shameful part of my past: I once took disco lessons. I wore giant powder blue bell bottoms with Sean Cassidy on the leg (<----- absolutely true) and tube tops. I feathered my hair and used half a can of AquaNet (blue – super hold, thankyouverymuch) to keep it bullet-proof. My only excuse is that it was the 70’s. However, I never once wore purple, velvet bellbottoms. Not once. A girl’s gotta have her standards. What’s your excuse, Bruce Jenner?
Without any further ado, let's get on with it, shall we?
Kristy and Lloyd
Since Kristy and Lloyd were in last place after the first round, they will have to bust a move (and not anything else) to bring their score up and save themselves from elimination. Before we see Kristy and Lloyd skate, we are again reminded of how very much better Isabelle Brasseur (Lloyd’s partner) is than Kristy. Cut to footage of Lloyd flinging Isabelle around. Cut to Kristy falling down again. Now, not only do we know how much better a skater Isabelle is, we know how much bigger Kristy is. In the skating world, Kristy is probably considered morbidly obese. In the real world (where you people all live), she is probably on the slender side of average (if “average” is a size 6).
While Lloyd and Kristy get along great, the connection (everyone take a drink!) wasn’t there on the ice last week. They have to work on that for this next round. Kristy has now realized that she can’t act her way out of this one. She actually has to practice and do the work… imagine that! Did she think the show would be providing a skating double? This isn’t The Cutting Edge, babe. To his credit, Lloyd really steps up and does his best to help motivate and encourage Kristy. I wanted to come up with something more snarky to say here but really, it’s obvious why Lloyd is such a good partner. For all we know, he screams his guts out at her when the cameras aren’t there but, from what they show us, Lloyd is nothing but supportive and patient.
It’s time to skate, and as “Boogie Fever” starts and the lights come up, we see that Kristy and Lloyd are wearing lots of blue and metallic and fringe and blue metallic fringe and there are headbands. It’s like “Ice Capades Remembers the 70’s.” They do quite a bit of dancing in place and Lloyd makes the big ass grab move for extra points (Really, he takes himself two big handfuls of Kristy’s caboose). Eventually they actually skate around and it’s clearly better than last week. They do a nice little footwork sequence, side-by-side spins and a few lifts. It’s really obvious that a) they had fun and b) Kristy has been working her butt off. Scott Hamilton is excited… or in pain….he’s screaming like a fifteen year old girl at a Clay Aiken show. I guess that means he’s happy.
The judges say:
Dorothy Hamill: She loved the 70’s and loved the routine! Great connection. 8.4/8.5
Mark Lund: – Wonderful energy and wonderful program. 8.3/8.4
John Nicks: WOW! This was good fun. Lloyd, you’re a powerful skater and you showed it. 8.5/ 8.6
Total score: 50.7
Grand total : 98.2
Dave and Nancy
Apparently, Dave is still having trouble making the transition from hockey to figure skating (Hey, this is sort of like The Cutting Edge! Next week, they get do shooters and get drunk. Then Dave will rip the trim off his costume.). You see, Dave’s been playing competitive hockey since he was a wee lad. The footwork in their first routine was definitely choreographed to take advantage of his hockey skills. This week’s routine has much different choreography and Dave is having a hard time getting it down. He’s getting frustrated and having trouble focusing in practice. Dave says that when Crunch Time comes, he’ll really pick things up. Well Dave, you’ve got a week to learn a whole routine….. I’d say this is Crunch Time.
Dave and Nancy’s routine is to James Brown’s "Get Up Offa That Thing." In what universe is this considered disco? Nancy starts out sitting on a crate and Dave skates around her. He is wearing sunglasses. Really, is it wise to obstruct his vision at all? In addition to the shades, Dave’s got on what appear to be velvet pants, along with a dark shirt and a white belt. Viva la Cheese! Nancy’s wearing a blue skating dress that could be considered disco…. or not. I know they’ve been practicing hard but, really, a lot of this routine consists of Dave skating around while Nancy does tricks. At one point, he sits on the crate snapping his fingers while Nancy skates around him. They skate around some more, Nancy does a spin, and they end up back on the crate. Scott = happy bunny. Me = non-plussed.
The judges say:
Mark Lund: He was thoroughly not entertained this time (vs. last time) Score: 7.8 / 7.8
Dorothy Hamill: Thought they were much better last time. They looked like they were having trouble getting in synch with each other this week. BUT, they sure look cute. Score: 8.0 / 8.0
John Nicks: Nancy – good skating. Dave – your hockey skating gives you advantages and disadvantages. He needs to be pointing his toes, showing more upper body strength. He needs to show his feminine side. Dave says he left that in his other pants. Score: 7.9 / 7.9
Total score: 47.4
Grand total : 96.7
Bruce and Tai
Bruce is still smarting from last week when John Nicks said he had no artistry. He’s never had to be concerned about artistry before. There aren’t any style points in track and field. Since they both were in their athletic prime in the 70’s, they feel they can bring a lot to this routine. Tai tells us that Bruce has become a workaholic. He never wants to quit. She’s exhausted and announces she’s taking a day off. Cut to Bruce at the rink by himself all day long. It’s midnight and he’s still skating. I hope those knees hold up. They didn’t look so hot last week.
Both clad in purple, including Bruce in giant purple, velvet bellbottoms, they skate to “Shake Your Groove Thing.” Bruce also has on a really frightful polyester shirt. They do the obligatory disco moves and you know what? I don’t think Bruce probably has that much rhythm off the ice either. He does get an “A” for effort in my book though. Bruce and Tai relive more of their glory days and do some footwork, side-by-side spins (and pretty fast too!) and finish with a flourish….or with Bruce almost dropping Tai, it was hard to tell with that lighting.
The judges say:
John Nicks: I know you tried really hard and you obviously have a great relationship but neither are in the shape you were in the 70’s. 7.9 / 8.1
Mark Lund: He loved the pull waltz jumps. You always give more than the minimum required. 8.1 / 8.2
Dorothy Hamill: You make me want to get out and do it too. Bruce, you are a very brave man. Funky in a good way Score: 8.3 / 8.4
Total score: 49.0
Grand total : 97.8
Jillian and John
John and Jill are definitely pumped up after having taken first place last week. They work on their routine with choreographer, Michael Siebert and seem down right giddy. We see shots of them practicing various lifts and spins and they really do look like they’ve been skating together for much longer than they actually have been. Everything seems to be going great until….. always with the drama…..Jill seems to have strained her groin while doing a camel spin. Here I snicker over a groin injury because I am actually a 12 year old boy. If Jill doesn’t take it easy, this injury could get much worse and she might not be able to skate. Dun-dun-DUH!!! (<---- dramatic music for effect).
It’s time for John and Jillian to skate. Jill is in a nearly backless silver dress and John is wearing a tank top (*wipes drool from chin*) under a shirt that matches Jill’s dress. Sadly, he does not remove the stupid silver shirt. Oh, and he’s also wearing black pants. So hey, do you ever watch people on TV or in movies and realize that you have made a serious vocational error? Yeah, in my life, I never get to get all cozy with a hot guy in leather pants.
John and Jill skate to “More Than a Woman” from Saturday Night Fever. They start off with a sort of spinning lift that just looks a little weird. I don’t think they did it wrong, it just looked weird. They complete their side-by-side footwork and it’s really good – they are right in synch with each other. Jill even does a layback spin. They finish off with an overhead lift that looked pretty darn good to me. Really though, John could stand on the ice for 3 minutes (without the silver shirt) and I’d think it was genius. Call me biased. I don’t deny it. They finish their routine and Scott Hamilton and the crowd are excited. So am I. Jeez, it is hot in here?
The judges say:
Mark Lund: He loved the footwork and Jill’s layback spin. But, he didn’t sense the same connection this week as last week. Score: 8.2/8.3
Dorothy Hamill: You two are so beautiful to watch together. You look FINE (the fine that's spelled f-o-i-n-e) together. Score: 8.6/8.4
John Nicks: Good performance, but disappointing. Controlled and very elegant. Not much excitement and not any improvement from last week. The other pairs are catching up. Score: 8.4/8.5
Total score: 50.4
Grand total : 102.2
Jillian tells Summer that the judges were right: she was not completely on her game this week. They still have the highest combined score and are definitely moving on to next week’s show.
Deborah and Kurt
Scott tells us that because Kurt Browning’s family is in Toronto, he and Deborah have been practicing there. Last week was the first time they had the opportunity to see the other teams and how they were progressing. After seeing how well Kristy and Jillian were doing, Deb has been inspired to work even harder. While their first routine was great artistically, but the judges wanted more technical content. That’s what they worked on for this week’s routine. Kurt says that coming in fourth place turned Deb into a competitive fireball – he screeches like a cat to demonstrate. They’re training like crazy and Deb says she wants to be great at this and win.
Playing on Deb’s history playing Sandy in Grease on Broadway, she and Kurt skate to “You’re the One That I Want.” Is that her singing it? Might be. Deborah is in full Sandy, post-slutty makeover black and Kurt is in a white t-shirt, black pants and an offensively large pompadour that even John Travolta wouldn’t have worn. It’s probably a little wishful thinking on his part. He hasn’t had that much hair since…. Well, never. Enough with the hats and wigs, Kurt. We like you better without them! Like the routine last week, they rely a lot on theatrics and it is entertaining. Deb looks much more sure on her skates. They complete their footwork sequence and do a funky little dip move with Deb between his legs. Kurt even manages to pick Deb up in a little spin. Kudos to him for even trying that stuff with no background in lifts. Scott is ready to burst.
The judges say:
John Nicks: It was just sort of okay and nothing special. Score: 7.8 / 7.9
Mark Lund: Nice energy. Liked spin at end. Very smart routine. Score: 8.0 / 8.1
Dorothy Hamill: She loved it. This is really a tough call because from the waist up, it was totally captivating. Deb, I would love to see you work more on your footwork and foot positions. Score: 8.2 / 8.3
Total score: 48.3
Grand total : 96.3
Deborah and Kurt are now in last place. Cut to Dave and Nancy partying. They were in last place and now they’re out of danger. Don’t worry Kurt and Deb, Frankenstein on Ice is next. You’ll be fine.
Todd and Jenni
Scott practices revisionist history exclaiming that Todd and Jenni blew the crowd away with their performance last week. I’d say that’s overstating the case a little, wouldn’t you? Based on their technical scores last week, Todd knew that he definitely had to raise the skill level for this week’s routine. Todd says that he’ll do whatever he has to do to win and take more risks than he normally would take. Jenni chooses a different approach. She brings in her partner/husband, Todd Sand to help out. Todd coaches them together and then works with Todd separately, showing him how to hold his body in different positions. Todd and Jenni decide to teach Todd how to do a lift. Choreographer, Michael Siebert looks alarmed. It’s a risky move that they haven’t practiced on the ice. They will decide at the last minute whether to include the lift in the routine. So, I guess Jenni has to decide if she wants to continue her professional skating career, or live the rest of her life working toward getting funding for spinal cord research so she can walk again. Seems like a no-brainer to me, Jen.
Todd and Jenni and Todd's ginormous ‘fro skate to “Jungle Boogie.” They decide to put the lift in but wisely, do it while standing still. Smart move. They get going and, although Todd still doesn’t look very sure of himself, they manage to pull off a pretty respectable throw axel. They do some disco-ish dancing and Jenni still has no rhythm. They do a little more dancing, a little lift and their footwork sequence. Just when it starts looking pretty good, Todd falls. The weight of the 'fro probably threw off his center of gravity. At least he doesn’t take Jenni down with him. He races to catch up with her and they finish the routine. He looks crestfallen as Jenni tries to cheer him up. Todd rips off his wig, takes Scott’s microphone and screams.
The judges say:
Dorothy Hamill: I’m so sorry. It was going so great and your skating has improved so much since last time. Score: 7.9 / 8.1
Mark Lund: Todd, just because you fell doesn’t mean it was a bad performance. You’ve improved so much since the last time. Score: 7.9 / 8.0
John Nicks: Jenni, nice throw axel. Todd, it was very exciting and interesting. One problem: you can’t skate. Todd defends himself, saying he only had 3 weeks to prepare. Score: 7.9 / 8.1
Total score: 47.9
Grand total : 95.6
- Jillian and John – 102.2
- Kristy and Lloyd – 98.2
- Bruce and Tai – 97.8
- Dave and Nancy – 96.7
- Deborah and Kurt – 96.3
- Todd and Jenni – 95.6
Todd and Jenni go home! Todd tells Scott that this was a lot of work. Before the show, he thought that ice skaters had it easy and now he sees how much hard work it takes. Jenni says that she had so much fun and is so proud of Todd and all the work he put in. Honestly, he really did do very well. I wouldn’t have progressed half as much….although I would have said “no” to the afro, but that’s just me.
Next week: The tricks get harder, Kristy cleans the ice with her face and Dave puts on a dress. Also: another team will be eliminated!
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