Dancing with the Stars recap: Disney Week

Dancing with the Stars Recap: Season 24, Episode 5

It’s Disney week, everyone! That means Carlton from the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, a pair of little kid dancers, a ton of JV dancers in sequins, and the entire cast dance with the Fab Five (Mickey, Minnie, Donald, Goofy, and Daisy substituting for Pluto) in single-camera choreography that sort of makes me crazy. How’s that for a run-on sentence?

This is my favorite week of the entire season. I love Disney. That’s probably why I have no problem with Julianne fixing her hair exactly like a modern-day Tinkerbell. Let’s sprinkle some pixie dust and recap this business!

Rashad and Emma
“Evermore” from Beauty and the Beast
Rashad and Emma can do no wrong in my opinion. He looked dashing in his royal blue suit and Emma looked exactly like a blonde Belle in her traditional yellow ballroom dance dress. I thought it was full of grace and completely lovely. There were twirls, dips, and even a part where Rashad grabbed on of Emma’s legs and arms and flung her around like a little kid pretending to be a helicopter. Even though I thought they did a decent job, I do agree with the judges that “Evermore” (a song the Beast sings in the new 2017 version of the movie) has a weird cadence. Read: It’s very hard to keep the beat. However, I didn’t think that he was all over the map as the judges did. Are they trying to knock him down a few pegs since he dominated last week? I’m not sure, but I don’t think he deserved the low score he received.
Bruno’s Best Line: You danced to the “beast” of the story.

After Rashad and Emma’s performance, Tom announced that they were safe for the next week. Who needs everyone to group together as pairs to wait for the red lights?

I’ll tell you who: Heather, Erika, Bonner, and Nick. These four jokers take the stage and wait for the red lights of doom. Erin lets everyone know that half are safe and half are not. And the red light goes to? Nick and Erika.

That was not a surprise to me. Nick doesn’t have the dance moves, and Erika didn’t have a great routine last week with her “Express Yourself” debacle.

Sadly, Nick and Peta have to go from the red light to the dance floor. Have fun punching out a jazz number, knowing it could all be for nothing, you crazy kids!

Nick and Peta
“I’ve Got No Strings” from Pinocchio
Nick shaved the beard so he could look more like a little boy. Well, that worked. He could pass for a college kid, easy. Nick knows that he’s at the bottom, and really wants to get better. Peta knows the only way to do that is to choreograph something that is silly, where he doesn’t take himself too seriously. This made me very, very nervous.

In my humble opinion, other than the cool NCYNC inspired puppet strings at the beginning, Nick’s jazz was a hot mess. He was slack jawed most of the routine. I kept willing him to shut his trap, but it rarely happened. There was a can-can portion with some JV dancers. There were canes. There were flips and theatrics. There was no order. In fact, I thought it was chaotic. The judges, however, thought it was the greatest thing since sliced bread. The words “breakthrough” and “fantastic” were used to describe what I had just witnessed. And get this: He received a HIGHER score than Rashad. What…in…the…world?
Bruno’s Best Line: You’re not wooden anymore! What was stirring last week is now exploding.

Erika and Gleb
Viennese Waltz
“Unforgettable” from Finding Dory
Maybe I was in a bad mood last night, but I had issues with this song choice. “Unforgettable” doesn’t scream Disney to me. Was this really the only track from the entire Disney catalog that could be choreographed for a Viennese Waltz? Is this just a way to remind the audience that they had a sequel to Finding Nemo? Why am I bothered by this is the better question.

Erika breaks down because she’s never experienced disappointment before. To help his partner cope, Gleb hugs her for 30 minutes and then choreographs a pretty waltz that is set under the sea. Some of their moves resembled swimming movements, which was uncomfortable for no one except me. I loved Erika’s pink sparkly dress. Is she supposed to be a jellyfish? There was also a clear and present danger of her boobs falling out. Thanks to the confetti bomb that ended the number, we were saved from all that exposure. The judges said they liked her, but the numbers didn’t prove it.
Bruno’s Best Line: There’s the woman behind the mask. See your honesty and fragility.

Heather and Alan
“for the First Time in Forever” from Frozen
Alan is still playing the part of Maks, as well as Kristof in Maks’ version of Frozen. Heather is Anna and is terrified to be the guinea pig of Maks’ new lift that he made up. BRING IN THE MATS! The goal is to focus on the characters and make it just like the movie.

Boy, did they hit the target. I don’t have a problem with the genre of jazz dipping into the musical theater part of the dance wheel, and if anyone can pull this off it is Heather. She can twirl forever. She can kick. She does the lift. The snow is magical. I enjoyed it thoroughly. This go around, the judges were split down the middle. Half of them wanted Heather to excel in her jazz roots, while the others were stoked that she stuck to the origin of the character. Heather was cool either way. She and Maks and Alan for that matter, all know that she is clearly the best dancer/performer, and will be climbing uphill until the end of time. She’s choosing to let it go.
Bruno’s Best Line: You were vibrant, alive. It was clearly a character-driven performance.
Writer’s Note: THIS IS THE SAME SCORE AS NICK AND PETA. Inconceivable.

Bonner and Sharna
“When Can I See You Again” from Wreck-It-Ralph
Let me drop some facts on you: 1.) Bonner is really good at structured dances. 2.) He also has a habit of projecting one facial expression. 3.) I personally haven’t seen Wreck-It-Ralph more than once, and feel that most people may not have an emotional connection to the movie. This may result in Bonner being in the bottom next week. The dance was well executed, but I was bored and don’t remember anything from the performance today. That’s not a good sign.
Bruno’s Best Line: You did not wreck the tango, that’s for sure.

Once again, Tom looks upon four couples, ready to announce that one is in jeopardy. Simone is safe. David is safe. Nancy is safe. And poor Normani finds herself in the red light of doom. Bless her, she and Val have to go dance right after this disturbing news. It’s a good thing they SLAYED it.

Normani and Val
Pado Doble
“I’ll Make a Man Out of You” from Mulan
Yes, yes, yes! This song is MY JAM. Asking the one and only Donny Osmond to sing it live on stage? I may have stood up.

Val adds some combat choreography and a few JV male dancers to the show and BOOM! We have a winner. It was sharp, strong, had amazing content, and all sorts of color guard twirling with sticks. Normani has legitimate kicks. She attacked the floor with fierce intention. The judges agreed with me.
Bruno’s Best Line: You were fierce, conquering, powerful!

David and Lindsay
“Ride” from Cars 3
This is the portion of our show when Disney pimps out its new summer movie, Cars 3. Call me crazy, but I didn’t know there was a Cars 2. Does that make me a bad Disney fan?

David picks up his World Series ring and then busts a gut learning a very fast jive. David tells us it is physically and mentally hard to keep this pace up. But as the oldest guy in the pack, he has to try even harder. There were 9,000 JV dancers to help Lindsay try and mask David’s lack of sharp footwork. There was a lot of flash and pizazz and very little jive. But I get it. Also, Lindsay looked great in her spandex.
Bruno: Oh, Lightning McQueen. You need an oil change and your engine retuned.

Nancy and Artem
“That’s How You Know” from Enchanted
Nancy was speaking my language when she said that dancing around all the young JV girls was extremely intimidating. Holla! This brought her to tears. Artem hugs them out of her until stage rehearsal, where she starts crying again. But she is Nancy Freaking Kerrigan and she is a professional! It also doesn’t hurt that she looks a lot like Amy Adams as Giselle in the movie. Like Heather, Nancy’s routine was very theatrical and character driven. I thought it was lovely.
Bruno’s Best Line: I couldn’t understand his accent. But using context clues, I can tell he liked it.

Simonne and Sasha
“How Far I’ll Go” from Moana
Simone finally broke down and cried because she’s afraid of Sasha. But just like Moana, Simone is learning to use her voice. She’s also embracing her gymnastics, her splits, her twirls, her leaps, and her weave. Truth be told, I was nervous that the wig was going to fall off, but it remained on her head. Victory. I adore Auli’i Cravalho and am so glad she was able to sing her song live. If I had to give her notes on anything, it would be that she still pops on her plastic smile. Other than that, I thought the routine was so much fun!
Bruno: My lovely little goddess. On land and in the air. Gravity doesn’t apply to you.

While Mickey and the gang look on in their darling glittery outfits, Tom makes the three couples in jeopardy wait a good 90-seconds before announcing that Erika and Gleb will no longer be performing on Dancing with the Stars. Both Erika and I figured this would happen, even though she admits that she whispered her fate into Gleb’s ear moments before Tom shared the news.

What did you think of Disney week? Which was your favorite dance? I think I’d have to go with Heather or Simone. Do you think Nick’s lack of beard gave him some sort of magical power like Pinocchio? Did you think it was a good routine? Am I weird? Have you ever seen Wreck-It-Ralph? Should I give it another go? Sound off in the comments section!

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April 18, 2017 6:06 pm

Nick was seriously overscored. And those red pants were seriously over-sharing things we didn’t need to see. I felt sorry for Nick, someone in the costume department hates him! Normani and Simone both killed it, and I loved Nancy too. Bonner’s facial expression was mostly terrified. And Rashad deserved a much higher score. I don’t love Disney night. It is usually 50/50 on whether the dances are annoying or sweet. But I would kill to look the way Lindsey did in her costume for even 5 minutes of my life, lol! At least Erica ended on a high note — I don’t think Gleb’s insistence on sexing it up all season did them any favors. And for whatever it is worth, I have a mutual friend who knows her well and says off camera she can be as down to earth as the next person and she definitely has a tv persona.

CO Kathleen
CO Kathleen
April 18, 2017 6:35 pm

I agree – Nick’s dance was dumb, dumb, dumber. How he earned scores higher than Rashad (LOVE RASHAD) is hard to understand. But I’m glad Nick stayed and Ericka went home. Bonner didn’t shine this week but he is a keeper. Normani and Heather seem to be the strongest – they have the whole package including great stage presence. Simone had a great dance this week and is definitely a strong dancer but her stoic presence, which has been highly polished for gymnastics, holds her back compared to Normani and Heather. There’s still time for her to grow in this area and I hope she works on it.

I love Disney week but this season most of the songs did not work well for ballroom dances and several routines we weakened by them. I loved the opening number and all the creative animation used throughout the night though!

April 18, 2017 11:20 pm

Thank you , Lincee!! I agree with you 100% on everything. From the start, I was shocked at Rashad’s scores. I thought he deserved much higher scores. But my strongest outrage was about Nick. I started wondering if I had been transported to an alternate universe! How on earth could the judges be gushing about that corny, hot mess? I felt sorry for Peta (who I actually really like). I almost felt like the producers were stacking the deck in an attempt to humiliate Nick with the song choice, necessary costume, and it being a Jazz number. Such a huge challenge for Peta. But then the judges RAVE about his performance AND back it up with outrageously high scores?! I’m sorry, I just don’t see it that way AT ALL! I read some other recaps of Monday night’s show, and they were mostly positive for Nick. I don’t get it. What have these people been smoking?? I really, really, really, want Nick to GO HOME. PLEASE. I’ve seen more than enough of him on TV.

April 18, 2017 11:52 pm

Totally agree that Rashad’s marks were too low. I didn’t think it was as good as last week’s, as he seemed a little stiff, but 7s??? It was WAY better than Nick’s – “What…in…the…world?” completely describes how I felt about his marks as well. Were the judges on crack?

I loved “She’s choosing to let it go” in reference to Heather, and also, “THIS IS THE SAME SCORE AS NICK AND PETA. Inconceivable.” (Whenever I hear the word “inconceivable, I think of the Princess Bride. Did this time too!)

The only thing I disagreed with was Julianne’s hair. It completely distracted me, and that was all I could focus on every time she was talking!

April 19, 2017 2:06 am

I’m in the minority, I actually thought Nick danced very very well! I was rather dumbfounded at how well.. I don’t know how he did that dance, but what a huge improvement for him. Finally he wasn’t painful to watch. Maybe roles that are painful and awkward suit him rather than those for which he’s trying not to be painful and awkward. The outfit was ridiculous but I give him credit for owning it!

April 22, 2017 9:33 am
Reply to  MinnesotaNice

I agree with MinnesotaNice! I think the judges have been very hard on him up until this week so if they went overboard on this dance then he deserved it! Let’s not forget he’s one of the few on this season who isn’t a dancer, an athlete or a performer! I felt so sorry for him wearing that Pinocchio costume….so awkward and embarrassing.

April 19, 2017 11:57 am

I loved Heather’s dance! I thought she did a great job as Anna and it was a cute, more theatrical. I couldn’t believe her scores at all! Nick on the other hand, I thought was a hot mess. when he got his scores, I thought I missed something in the dance but didn’t want to rewind it to watch again. I felt like it was a bit scrambled. I really thought he would be the one to go home.

Normani and Simone’s dances were in a league of their own. I loved them both!

I also really like David Ross as a person! He is not the best dancer and he knows that. I just love how humble he is in knowing his dancing ability and how much of a family guy he is. I know he won’t win, but I do hope he stays around for a few weeks because he is fun to watch. I don’t know who is going to win but I think Heather, Simone, Normani, and Rashad will be in the final 4,

April 19, 2017 4:56 pm

I’d never heard of Erika before this show, but it seemed to me she had an attitude from beginning to end: sullen, uncommunicative, dismissive, and a bit haughty. Those things even showed in her robo-reaction to her partner’s words of appreciation at the end. Zero warmth. I’m happy to see her go.

April 19, 2017 5:48 pm
Reply to  Lincee

I’m unlicensed for the purposes of offering a professional opinion (LOL) but my instinct is that what we saw is what she is: probably someone living in reaction to what she experienced growing up. So I can empathize, but she still annoys me.

April 20, 2017 9:54 am
Reply to  Contrarian

I thought Nick did a pretty good job, considering he looked like a dufus. I loved Normani’s paso though. I can’t believe they were in the bottom. And I’m quite sorry that Maks is coming back. I thought Alan and Heather were fantastic together.

I know Disney must be a sponsor, but I don’t generally like Disney night on this show. And btw, Julianne’s hair was supposed to look like Tinkerbelle’s infamous topknot.

April 22, 2017 9:34 am
Reply to  Contrarian

AGREE!!!!!! Was glad to see her go!

April 27, 2017 1:17 pm

No I have never seen Wreck it Ralph, Moana, and I didn’t know there was a Cars 2, I agree the songs were to Random and hard for some of the dances. I don’t know my favorite to long ago lol! I think Heather did great as Anna. Loved Normani’s and Sasha’s too. I think Bonner is doing the best he can with the injury he has had and is dealing with in his back. I am proud of him for being on this show.

January 12, 2022 7:01 pm


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