In the introduction, Tom points out that everyone had just five days to learn a new routine, so everyone is on an equal playing field. And we'll be watching it LIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIVE! I think that's the first LIIIIIIIIVE of the season, isn't it? They changed the opening in previous episodes so that we didn't hear it. I missed it.
As the couples are introduced, the people coming down the right hand stairway start going way too fast, so that by the time Shawn and Mark are introduced, they're already down the stairs and walking across the dance floor, and you can barely see Shawn over the audience members' heads. It was so weird that I had to rewind and my husband and I analyzed what just happened like we were John Madden with the telestrator: "No, see, right here, they're like halfway down the stairs as they're being announced and you can see Shawn and Mark behind them! So then by the time they cut back, Shawn and Mark are on the last step." This is the exciting life that we lead.
Maks and Denise are leading off this week with their samba. Last week, Denise improved in her second routine. In rehearsals, Maks encouraged Denise to get out of her head and feel the music instead of worrying about the steps. To get her to lighten up, Maks dressed up in a ruffled hot pink dress and Carmen Miranda hat to get her to laugh. They begin their routine and it starts out pretty nicely, and I remember why I really like the samba. But when they break out of hold, and Denise is on her own, it goes horribly wrong. I can't pinpoint what her problem is, but it's like she's not hearing the music and has no musicality at all. Once Maks gets her back in hold, she does a little better, but now she's ahead of the beat and it looks like she knows she screwed up, so she's totally in her head instead of just dancing. She just doesn't look like she's having any fun at all out there; she seems grimly determined.
While waiting for the judges, Tom tells Maks that he's a really ugly woman. Len says that samba is a tough dance, and it wasn't great, but he thought it was good. Bruno thought it was "so flat and full of holes" that it was a waffle instead of a samba, and he hopes Denise will do better in the future. Carrie Ann says that Denise has no poker face and looks terrified (My husband: "This just in: Denise Richards not a good actress"), and she needs to work on her hands and arms. Tom cracks a joke about Carrie Ann's new long bangs blocking her vision. Scores: Carrie Ann 5, Len 6 and Bruno 5. Here's how hated Denise is -- the audience doesn't boo those terrible scores.