« All News

Search RealityWanted News











Dancing With The Stars Season 14: Week 1 Performance Recap

Posted on 03/20/2012 by Gina in Dancing with the Stars

| More

Dancing With The Stars Season 14


by Kylene Hamulak


Before I begin this recap of the premiere episode of Dancing With the Stars' 14th Season, I need to tell you that I know exactly one thing about dancing: I can't do it. I'm more graceful running from a bee than I could ever be on a dance floor.

So with that little disclaimer - welcome back to the ballroom and the chase for that elusive mirror ball trophy! As always, we begin with the parade of contenders which is a who's who of... "who?" with the exception of like...four people. No worries though - by the end of the night, you'll remember all of them.


Team: Maria Menounos and Derek Hough
Dance: Cha-Cha-Cha
If you missed the intro package for Maria and Derek, let me sum it up: Derek wants as many mirror balls as he has chest hairs (four, by his count), Maria is clumsy ("I'm like a dude but I have boobs"), and she has an "undescribable" creepy laugh that earned my tv the side eye and prompted Tom to invite home viewers to start a (non alcoholic, of course) drinking game.  Judges said: 

7 - Len thought she coped well and provided a good start to the show, noting nothing can prepare you for the first dance.
7 - Bruno described Maria as curvaceously delicious (side note: I died a little inside when he described her as curvaceous...and then I put down my Oreos) and encouraged her to go for sultry.
7 - Carrie Ann thought it was a solid cha-cha, but wants to see her go more confidently from one move to another.
Score = 21

Team Jack Wagner and Anna Trebunskaya
Dance: Fox Trot
He's a man who wants to be pushed harder and she's a "Russian red head who means business." We watch as Anna repeatedly reminds him to stand up, and then they begin their dance...lying down. But their performance is to Sugar Town, and it was quirky and happy (just like Zooey Deschanel, who sang it in 500 Days of Summer). Judges said:
8 - Bruno thought it was beautifully acted and danced and wondered how they could possibly top it in week 2.
8 - Carrie Ann agreed with me, telling them that they took her to a happy place, which she demonstrated with some weird sort of gesture. To Jack: "You can act, you can sing, boy can you dance!"
7 - Len thought the theme of dance was fantastic, but criticized the technique (to a chorus of boos), though he ultimately enjoyed the dance.
Score = 23

Team: Donald Driver and Peta Murgatroyd
Dance: Cha-Cha-Cha
I know as much about football as I do about dancing, but when a Green Bay Packers Superbowl Champ tells me the he intends to win, I listen. Because like skinny-legs Donald, I've watched DWTS. And I know football players got moves. And also, his partner Peta is wearing some of the tinsel leftover from Christmas garland and not much else. The crowd is insane as they finish their performance, and Tom notes that it does not feel like week 1 of the competition. Judges said:
7 - Carrie Ann loved the routine and thought it was a real crowd pleaser
7 - Len thinks the dance had the right attitude and flare but noted that Donald got a little overexcited at times (insert euphemism here).
7 - Bruno agrees with Len - attitude is right, but he urges Donald to refine it because he has the talent.
Score = 21

Team: Gavin DeGraw and Karina Smirnoff
Dance: Foxtrot
Gavin DeGraw tells us that he wants to dance so that he can get out from behind his piano when he's performing. I think it's so that he can dance battle if anyone tries to attack him on the streets at 4am again. (What - too soon?) There's a little bit of groping during his lesson with Karina, but you can't really blame him. Judges said:
6 - Len was critical, saying that he coped well with a difficult dance, but it was a little bit stiff.
7 -Bruno thought Gavin displayed great charm and lent a gentle quality but warned him not to get stiff in the wrong places. (Gavin: "I sometimes stiffen up at the wrong times too"...maybe there should be a euphemism drinking game, Tom.)
7 -Carrie Ann saw great musical interpretations and thought the flow was nice, but warned him about hyperextended arms in the future.
Score =20

Team: Roshon Fegan and Chelsie Hightower
Dance: Cha-Cha-Cha
Never do I feel older than when the "Disney Channel Star" gets introduced and I have absolutely no clue who the kid is. I'm still not sure, but he tells me/us he's representing his generation and won't let being the youngest in the competition intimidate him. They're entertaining, and it's obvious he's a good dancer, but it remains to be seen if he can translate the hip hop to the ballroom.  Judges said:
8 - Bruno tells us "Roshon can go on and on and on!" And then a bunch of other things about how good he was.
8 - Carrie Ann agrees and notes that Roshon had the coolest spin in all seasons of cha-cha (I thought I heard a Michael Jackson comparison, but since that's blasphemy, I'll ignore it). She also likes their cool youthful "flava". That's a quote.
7 - Len reminds us that there is the technicality of the performance to consider, and this was low technicality and too much hip hop; even with the criticism, however, he believes Rashon is a good dancer and will develop - "well done."
Score = 23

Team: Sherri Shepherd and Val Chmerkovsky
Dance: Fox Trot
As Sherri tells us how NOT elegant she is, she also treats us to the second butt grab of the evening. Keepin' it classy, DWTS! Sherri tells us she's gonna laugh her way all the way to the mirror ball, and she seems committed to that strategy.  Judges said:
8 - Carrie Ann declares Sherri as the happiest contestant EVER and says she loved watching her dance.
7 - Len picked up on a couple minor things, but summed up the performance in three words: "Fun Fun Fun."
8 - Bruno agreed that Sherri was light on her feet with good timing and that she lights up the room.

Team: Melissa Gilbert and Max Chmerkovsky
Dance: Cha-Cha-Cha
Melissa gives us three reasons to root for her team on DWTS: her marriage ended, she broke her back, and there was no Cha Cha on the Prairie. Max gives us one reason: his unbuttoned shirt. But since his unbuttoned shirt is sheer in the back...why bother wearing a shirt at all?  Judges said:
6 - Len would've liked to have seen more hip action, but thought she coped very well with a difficult dance and "ambitious routine".
7 - Bruno thought there was work to do, but called it a "very inspiring first performance."
7 - Carrie Ann attributed some of the mistakes to nerves and believes Melissa has great potential; she urged her to just let it go, and thought they did a great job.

Team: William Levy and Cheryl Burke
Dance: Cha-Cha-Cha
Most of what I learned in the intro package is that I should dust off my Spanish dictionary so I can start watching telenovelas. Most of what I learned watching them dance is that I do not need to understand a word of what he's saying to enjoy him. Judges said: 
8 - Bruno stood up and exclaimed "Hottest Package of the Season!"
8 - Carrie Ann was impressed by his ability move Cheryl around with ease and grace and said "good job." (She meant both the dance and the one she has, where she gets paid to WATCH him dance.)
8 - Even Len was smitten, noting that they captured the spirit of cha-cha-ca - performing it right on the edge but keeping it under control.

Team: Martina Navratilova and Tony Dovolani
Dance: FoxTrot
Not all athletes are natural dancers. For example, Tony described Martina's starting position as "awkward". I noted it looked like an albatross stance. For her performance, Martina looked absolutely lovely, but it seemed like she lumbered around the dance floor.  Judges said:
7 - Carrie Ann described her as refined and elegant; but encouraged her to work on turns.
6 - Len said the performance was "close, but not quite there." He thought they were too careful.
7 - Bruno agreed that Martina was very elegant with good posture and thought she did very well.

Team: Katherine Jenkins and Mark Ballas
Dance: Fox Trot
Your reaction to Katherine may have been the same as mine ("um....who?"), which is why the intro package was all about the fact that we don't know who she is. Her look and her accent give her an advantage - she fits right in to the ballroom. As they finish their dance, Tom declares this his favorite premiere episode ever. Judges said:
8 - Len loved the tiny details throughout the dance and exclaimed "That was cracking!"
9 - Bruno loved it too, noting that the quality of movement was surreal.
9 - Carrie Ann apparently "thought we were watching two pros together." She called it the best first dance on the first episode ever. And I feel like she used a similar description four or five times tonight.

Team: Gladys Knight and Tristan MacManus
Dance: Cha-Cha-Cha
I just gotta say - Gladys looks gooooood. Is she supposed to be the token old person this season? If so, she didn't get the memo.  Judges said:
8 - Bruno's words to Gladys: "You've got class, you've got sass and you are a star - a real one!"
8 - Carrie Ann told them that the night had some great dances, but that one made her "wanna get up and dance!" (As opposed to the other dances, which just made her do some awkward gesturing in her chair.)
7 -Len complimented her naturalness, saying she did a wonderful job.

Team: Urkel Jaleel White and Kym Johnson
Dance: Fox Trot
Who's kidding whom - no one refers to this guy as Jaleel White. Everyone is going to refer to him as Urkel. The suspenders will come out eventually. But it's not tonight. Tonight they're an elegant pair, but I don't know why anyone would be surprised...Stefan Urquelle was pretty smooth. It runs in the family. Judges say:
9 - Carrie Ann describes the performance as the icing on the cake, "smooth, smooth, smooth."
8 - Len agreed, saying he loved the routine and added that this was the best first show of any season.
9 - Bruno compared him to Gregory Hines, noting that he couldn't give a higher compliment.

All in all, it was a night of good performances. Some dancers were stronger than others, but, unlike past years, there weren't any real train wrecks. This week's scores and votes will be combined with next Monday's performance results to determine who the first star to take a final dance will be on the first results show of the season, Tuesday March 27th.


Who do you think this season's breakout stars will be?



(Image courtesy of ABC)



Rate this article

  • Currently 5.00/5

Rating: 5.0/5 (1 vote cast) (Log in to vote!)

blog comments powered by Disqus

Go back to the previous page