Craig Sjodin/ABC
Annie Barrett
May 11, 2010 AT 04:00 PM EDT

On the week 8 performance episode of Dancing With the Stars, the five remaining couples performed a nice little ballroom dance and a relatively insane Latin dance loosely connected to a certain decade (the 1960s) or general concept (”the future”). Oh, yes, it was Era Night! Break out the zebra patterns, face paint, and fake bangs!

Before we get to anything relevant, I’d like to swoon a bit because my favorite Harold Wheeler Ensemble member and yours, Enthusiastic Chimes Lady (ECL), was Enthusiastic Tambourine Lady last night! She is a percussionistic marvel! ”She’s clearly a woman of many talents. But only ONE enthusiasm. And it’s grand,” says commenter Lemon ”She is the best gem on any telecast,” chimes in reader Liz. Jeez, DANCMSTRs, are you trying to break my heart before I even get into the meat of the recap? Well, it’s working! Also, I am going to figure out how to make one of those ”animated GIF” doohickeys to illustrate the complete glory of ECL/ETL by the end of the night if it kills me. And I really might die trying. I can definitely see it happening. If you don’t get a recap tomorrow morning, this will be why.

Will the judges please reveal their scores? Carrie Ann Inaba!

Nicole Scherzinger and Derek Hough: 29 in ballroom round + 30 in Latin round = 59 out of possible 60 ”There’s no drama,” Nicole insisted before bursting into tears during rehearsal footage. ”It’s not easy. I just want it to be good.” As a viewer, I’m confused: Is this the girl who has trouble counting to seven, or the one who complimented her partner for being so open when she collaborates with him on their choreography? Nicole might have even more personalities than Chad. The couple’s near-perfect foxtrot, which I’d like to call ”Nicole and Derek got the runs,” was spirited and quick, with plenty of props. Of course, I was obsessed with the special newspapers they were engrossed in at the beginning and end of the foxtrot, and paused my DVR to go squint at the headlines up close. My favorite by a mile: ‘DWTS’ Set Wins Top Awards For Industry. Amazing. (Sidenote: I suspect that the 1970s wasn’t an option for this season’s Era Night because the producers realized that visually, every night is 1970s night on Dancing With the Stars.) Bruno called Nicole’s foxtrot ”one and a half minutes of pure dancing joy, like a jewel created by a master.” Damn you, Our Lady of Perpetual Metaphor, for attempting to sway my vote with your allusions to gems.

Those silly judges thought they could stump Johnny Quest lookalike Derek with their ”1950s-style paso doble” card. Nice try, losers! Nothing is im-paso-ble! Obviously, Derek will work it out and get it right. It’s just what he does. I really liked the Grease-y feeling I got from the end of their paso, when Nicole’s perma-angry facial expression actually worked in her favor. She looked like Cha Cha Degregorio, dancin’ her heart out at the end of the Big Dance. She just wanted it so bad! She cares so much, you know. ”I care so much,” said Nicole. The judges all loved her paso, but DANCMSTR and Bruno looked horrified in their own unique ways after Carrie Ann presumed to illustrate the judging trio’s collective awe by panting like a rabid dog. I love it when C.A. does demos. Who needs words?

NEXT: ”Come on, woman, jump on me now…”

( 1 of 4 )

You May Like