Image credit: ABC
STAIRWAY TO DISCO HEAVEN The standard purple steps were nowhere near "Strong Enough" to support Bill and Emma's appropriately absurd routine on their own.
Cher guest-judges the seven remaining couples on emotional connection and incorporation of feathers; another pair trudges home| Published Nov 5, 2013
Well, ya better! All was right in our favorite sparkly alternate universe as legendary pop star Cher seamlessly assimilated into the shimmery atmosphere of Planet Mirrorballus. She was there to sub in for absent head judge Len Goodman, perform twice so we could peer deeply into the medical marvel that is her 67-years-young face, and remind Tom Bergeron, with diva-esque authority, "As everyone knows, I don't know how to call out for pizza."
The most subdued of the three judges (which is really saying something, namely that Bruno Tonioli and Carrie Ann Inaba are cuckoo birds), Cher gave out mostly 9s and compliments. But she was highly amusing throughout the night -- threatening to "knee" Tonioli if he flailed too hard, upping her game from a demure sequined shift to a ridiculous feathered headdress for her second performance, and dramatically delaying her score announcements as if conjuring up the paddles from the sleeves of her magical cloak. (Note that I do not doubt whether Cher's cloak itself is magical. It obviously is. It's Cher's.)
Of course, one of the seven remaining pairs had to go, following a set of solo dances and a three-round Dance Off that gave three couples three extra points towards their nebulous clusterf*cks of Judges Scores/Viewer Votes. (Not even Bill Nye the Science Guy understands DWTS' wacky scoring system.) Brant Daugherty and Peta Murgatroyd have been eliminated. The Pretty Little Liars actor just never quite achieved Star power within the televised ballroom, despite a few dance efforts that were more technically sound than those of some others.
In what struck me as the most intense pre-elimination moment of the season (I guess I was all jacked up over my love-hate relationship with Leah Remini's hilarious/gross fringed leggings a.k.a. "hairy tights"), Jack Osbourne and Cheryl Burke fell under the red "jeopardy" light but were not necessarily in the bottom two.
You guys. Cheryl Burke was named after Cher. Perhaps this explains her affinity for black lace, leather, and costumes precariously held together by a single thread? (Not necessarily true, as I've just described every female to ever appear on Dancing With the Stars.)
NEXT: Will the judges please reveal their scores? Carrie Ann Inahhhhhh-ber!