Dancing With the Stars recap: Life Is but a Dream

The Dance Duel rears its ugly head; fringe fairy Sheila E. and Train perform
Ep. 09 | Aired Apr 17, 2012

THE DANCE DUEL Once Karina's head hit those stairs, she and Gavin were goners against Jaleel and Kym.

ABC

We may never know who really earned the least amount of viewer votes this week, and the judges would like it to stay that way! Following the first-ever Dance Duel of the series, Week 5's row-row-row-your-boater Gavin DeGraw and his partner Karina Smirnoff were shown the sparkly trapdoor at the bottom of the simulated ocean on the ballroom floor. Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily, they'd be deposited back into this sad, cruel reality -- and away from the happy Planet Mirrorballus reality show.

Gavin could not have been cuter or more hilarious about his exit. Truly, he had been playfully begging for it all week -- admitting his own technical difficulties to the judges after Monday's samba-at-sea, teasing the camera almost joyfully "This could be the end of my dancing career!" after his late-night Dance Duel rehearsal, and telling Tom moments before the big showdown, "We have a couple of the steps down, but Jaleel's more talented than I am." Ugh, as if!

Of course, Jaleel White, Gavin's fellow bottom-two dweller and Dance Duel deathmatch opponent, was the better dancer. But to me, Gavin is the better star. The problem with this show is that it isn't a singing competition!

"What we are TRYING to SAFEGUARD is the INTEGRITY of the DANCE!" roared head judge Len Goodman. Okay, okay, okay. This isn't the Titanic; you don't have to shout.

Is the Dance Duel really worth it or is it an unnecessary split-screen nightmare? (Take today's EW poll and tell us what you think of the new Dance Duel.) When you think about all nine of these couples waking up early or staying up late somewhere in the most hectic 12 hours of the week only to rehearse a dance they'll never even perform, the whole thing kind of seems like torture. Is that the point of Dancing With the Stars? Maybe I've been playing this all wrong!

Spoiler alert, you guys:

Did Karina forget about DWTS Radio (WMBT) last night or did she want this stellar explosion of gas to be transmitted across the glitter galaxy? I found myself even more perplexed than I had been moments earlier as I wondered what the heck was going on with Selena Gomez' shoes (and whether she is a living doll).

NEXT: The Top 7 (seh-vehhhhhn!) moments of the results show

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