Previously on Dancing with the Stars: Kate Flannery, who had been a lot of fun to watch, was eliminated because people are inexplicably voting for Sean Spicer. Well, considering the President keeps using his time wisely by Tweeting that people should vote for him because there’s absolutely nothing else he should be dealing with. The judges are getting mad, I’m getting mad. One would think the producers would learn a lesson, but it’s Bobby Bones all over again, if Bobby Bones had ever defended Hitler. Which to the best of my knowledge, he has not.

Hey, Tom Bergeron! I’m about to leave town for a few days and time is tight. Can you give me this one for free? It’s…..   LIIIIIIIIIVVVVVE!!!! 

OK, we’ve got two dances for everybody this week. A Girl Group and a Boy Band. First up, Girl Groups!

James Van Der Beek and Emma Slater (36/40, 36/40) – We learn about James’ past with an a cappella group, and I am so looking forward to when this airs on the West Coast, because my sister is going to love that. They’re doing a Jive to the Pointer Sisters “I’m So Excited”. My feelings on the Jive have been documented, but at least this one is super athletic and they seem to be having a blast.

Len says it was sharp and aggressive. Guest Judge Joey Fatone says he makes it look easy. Bruno calls it a “frenzy of excitement” but says he could have pumped his legs more. Carrie Ann says he achieved excellence once again. He gets a 36.

They come back for the Girl Group round with a Jazz dance, so my favorite couple gets my two least favorite styles. They’re doing an ‘NSync song and I’m never sure how to punctuate that name. That’s also apparently the band that Joey was in. I have a lot of trouble keeping them straight. I actually really like the way they emulate the choreography of the video but work a partner into it. I don’t know if it counts as Jazz, but I was impressed by what they did.

Len wanted more of the two of them and less boy band. Joey loved it and wishes he could give them a hundred. Wait, does it say in the rules that he can’t? Is there an Air Bud loophole? Bruno agrees they could have been together more but he liked it in this context. Carrie Ann calls it “amazing”. It’s another 36.

Sean Spicer and Jenna Johnson (26/40, 24/40) – Jenna is still filling in for Lindsay, which is very kind of her. They’re doing an Argentine Tango to Destiny’s Child. Can’t Beyonce step in and stop this? It’s like all of his dances where he hardly moves and this has the bonus of him holding his arms in a way that’s super weird.

Joey Fatone says he’s good from the waist up but his feet are a problem. Bruno appreciates that he tries hard and consistently makes it to the end. Carrie Ann says he lacks artistry. Len says the best thing was that it wasn’t very long and he was “just walking about”. It’s a 26.

They’re going to Foxtrot to a One Direction song and the only think I know of them is that SNL sketch where Paul Rudd was their number one fan. There is talk of Sean going shirtless and, look, nobody wants to see me shirtless either, but please don’t do that. This is the most Sean has ever danced. It’s not good, but it’s the first time that he doesn’t stand in place for long stretches. The rhythm is bad and his movements are awkward, but he does move.

Bruno calls him “consistent”. Carrie Ann says he lost his step in the middle and never recovered. Len says it had moments of flow but sputtered out. Joey likes that he, like Lou Ferrigno, gives 110%. It’s a 24.

Hannah Brown and Alan Bersten (32/40, 39/40) – They’re going to dance to “No Scrubs” and I know I’ve talked about my issues with this song before. But for real, if the guy in the passenger side is trying to holler at you, that just indicates that they are being responsible. The driver is keeping his eyes on the road, freeing up the passenger for hollering. Under no circumstances should the person operating a motor vehicle be trying to holler at anybody. Oh, also it’s a Salsa and it’s pretty fun. They have maybe too much focus on the backup dancers and Alan almost screws up a lift, but all in all it’s quite good.

Bruno likes her confidence but says the timing was off. Carrie Ann says the lifts were a little out of sorts. Len agrees that she got ahead of the music but deems it well done. Joey thinks it was a little sloppy but fantastic. She gets a 32.

They’re dancing to BTS, and they actually go ahead of Sean and Jenna, which means something is going on. Hannah loses her temper during practice, but considering behavior we’ve seen in the past, this seems more like a single bad moment. Oh, also I do not what BTS is. It is not an appropriate soundtrack for a Tango, that’s for sure. It’s quite a good dance but it’s so dissonant with the music that I keep getting distracted. A different song and this is a flat-out banger.

Joey says it’s the best dance of the night. Bruno likes it so much he purrs. Yeah, we all have to deal with that. Carrie Ann thanks them for bringing back their A game. Len says it was a little bit loose but very good all around. It’s a 39!

Ally Brooke and Sasha Farber (40/40, 40/40)- It’s a Spice Girls Samba! Despite a perfect score, she was in the bottom two last week because nothing makes sense anymore. Apparently Baby Spice was going to be there, but there was a scheduling conflict. It’s a risky move to have Ally as one of five female dancers for big sections of the dance, but the actual Samba focuses on her. I can already feel Len hating the non-Samba parts. There’s some neat choreography but it’s not super memorable. It’s hard to come up with something to say about good dances, you know?

Carrie Ann calls them the Wonder Twins. Len says there was a lot of recognizable stuff. Joey is disappointed there was no Samba Roll but thinks it was amazing. Bruno loves it. It feels like they’re already rushing the judges. Time is going to be a concern tonight. They get a 40, which kind of surprises me, but I also can’t point to anything that was wrong.

They’re closing out the night with a New Kids on the Block Jazz dance. Ally busts out some choreography that horrifies Sasha, which is very funny. It’s fun to watch but I can’t tell what makes something a Jazz dance anymore. There are some really good lifts and I think this was a good dance in a style that doesn’t do much for me.

Joey likes the storytelling. Bruno calls it a delight, which makes me think he’s turning into me. Carrie Ann doesn’t know what to say but thanks her for all the fun. Len likes the way her personality came through. Its another 40!

Lauren Alaina and Gleb Savchenko (34/40, 36/40) – They’re dancing a Quickstep to the Supremes, and they remind us that Mary Wilson was on this season. Man, that seems so long ago and it really wasn’t. It’s quite good – it’s cute, if that makes sense. The Quickstep doesn’t lend itself to showstoppers, but it’s very well executed.

Len notes some missteps and then gets mad at the audience. Joey agrees and wants them to work on their frame. Bruno says they perfectly captured the joy of a classic. Carrie Ann thought it was fantastic. They get a 34 and it’s pandemonium. The crowd doesn’t know how to feel, Carrie Ann can’t find her paddle. It’s nuts.

They’re doing a Rumba to a Backstreet Boys song and AJ from the aforementioned Boys shows up to display a ridiculous hat. It’s a really beautiful dance to a truly dumb song. I like this a lot. The lines are so good and there’s an amazing flow that has me riveted.

Carrie Ann calls it an amazing artistic explosion and reminds her to breathe. Len says he liked it very much. Joey jokes about not liking the song but says the dance was absolutely amazing. Bruno talks about how hot the dance was. She gets a 36.

Kel Mitchell and Witney Carson (34/40, 40/40) – They’ve got a paso doble to En Vogue, and I love me some paso. Also, Kel makes her go to church with him. It’s presented as something where she doesn’t have a choice. The dance is rad. Kel is really good with dramatic posing and there’s this amazing sense of drive to it. I had a blast with this one!

Joey calls it awesome over the cheers of the crowd. Bruno loved the power and gives him some advice on his lines. Carrie Ann thinks it was too small and he needs to go bigger. Len says there were too many gimmicks. It’s a 34.

They’re doing a Boys II Men Viennese Waltz, which is another thing that my sister is going to enjoy in three hours. There’s something kind of off about the way Kel dances. Something about his posture where even when it’s good it’s a little screwy, and I find that I really respond to it. Having this weird little glitch that’s so consistent that it must be intentional is a fun thing to have in the mix after all these years. It’s a good dance and it also fees about fifteen seconds long.

Len thinks it’s terrific. Joey says he did a great job. Bruno calls him a perfect gentleman. Carrie Ann appreciates that he took direction. They get a 40!

Time for results and I’m dreading this. There’s such a huge drop in scores right at the bottom there and I just don’t think it’s going to matter. Prove me wrong, America!

Ally and Sasha are safe! They’re in the semifinals! Kel and Witney are safe! James and Emma are safe! Oh, we’re almost home. The last couple who is safe is… Emma and Alan! I let out a whoop here.

That means it’s down to Lauren and Gleb or Sean and Jenna. Tough decision, I’m sure you’ll agree. Carrie Ann saves Lauren and Gleb. So does Bruno because come on. Finally, we are done with this nonsense and the people going to the semifinals deserve to go to the semifinals.

Myndi will be here next week for a whole new world with blue skies and singing birds. Semifinals! And Cher will be there! I hope she’s a guest judge because it was just chaos last time. Remember how she once gave somebody a score of “Cher”? I can’t wait!

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One Response to Dancing with the Stars Season 28, Episode 9 – Boy Bands and Girl Groups

  1. Don says:

    Great point about No Scrubs and it’s promotion of responsible behavior.

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