Well, it's finally happened! Head judge Len Goodman inhaled too much artificial fog and pitched his worst temper tantrum to date on season 16's Week 8. It was bound to happen! You can't put flashing lights, pounding music, CGI effects, bulky props, and an extra dancer in front of the world's biggest crusader against "messin' about." Even if the routine RULES and marks a stunning achievement in eye makeup for men. It just won't work. Sorry.
FYI: The reason the judges and Brooke kept referring to next week as "the semifinals" is that there will be four couples competing in the finals on May 20 instead of the usual three.
Will the judges please reveal their scores? Carrie Ann Inahhhh-ber!
Zendaya and Val Chmerkovskiy: 28/30 foxtrot + 30/30 salsa trio = 58/60 "Don't Worry, Be Happy" was a weird, super-mellow song choice for their show-opening foxtrot, but I think it worked. It was like slipping the audience a sedative and easing the transition from boring Monday on Earth to dance party Funday on Planet Mirrorballus. They're really pushing this "grumpy old man" agenda with Val. He's not that bad. Zendaya showed "incredible natural musicality" according to Bruno, and the yellow and blue balloons in the background really brought out the colors in her curtain. The beginning was "a little dainty," said Carrie Ann, but it was a good start.
The couple's salsa trio with Gleb's Ponytail, though, was electrifying! First perfect 30 of the season! The grumpy old guy and Gleb kindly wore their white shirts wide open and spent much of the time shimmying outward towards the audience, leaving Zendaya to shine in the center -- they were the princess' security guards, after all. "You didn't need the underwear models!" cried Bruno -- amazingly with a straight face. You know he doesn't believe that!
Kellie Pickler and Derek Hough: 28/30 Viennese waltz + 27/30 = 55/60 DANCMSTR Derek knows that the best way to channel emotion through dance is to get more mirrors involved. Kellie danced an angelic Viennese waltz for her grandma/mom figure, who passed away when she was 15. She never found closure, but there it was on the dance floor, shrouded in fog. Only after the music started did I realize I'd been waiting for YEARS to see a televised Viennese waltz set to Mazzy Star's "Fade Into You." Yes! So good! I think it's strange I never knew.
And those final few seconds, when Derek leaves her sprawled on the floor? OH, THE DRAMA! I'm serious. Why does the mirror make the theatrics that much more powerful?! I've been brainwashed! No, but obviously this was great and both dancers zoned out during the judges' critique with tears in their eyes. I agree with Derek -- this and all of the dances should have been longer.
NEXT: Evil Tristan would like to know if you're up for a bit of 'foon'