'Dancing with the Stars' recap: Season 14 premiere

No villains and, hey, no eliminations in season 14 premiere, either

  • Roshon Fegan and Chelsie Hightower in rehearsal
Roshon Fegan and Chelsie Hightower in rehearsal (ABC )
March 19, 2012|By Amy Watts

TOM BERGERON!  It's so great to see you again! Oh, hi, Brooke, you're there too.

Introductions: Notable for Gavin's fedora, Maks' open shirt and Martina looking more glam than I could have ever imagined.  And now they tell us no elimination this week, everybody will be back next week. Way to kill some suspense there.

Maria Menounos & Derek Hough
Derek: "I want as many mirrorball trophies as I have chest hairs.  That would be four."  Maria's got tomboy tendencies and a laugh you'll find either endearing or INCREDIBLY irritating. (Guess where I fall on the spectrum?) They're dancing  a cha cha cha to Kelly Clarkson's "Stronger (What Doesn't Kill You)." Oh, dear. Maria's got the body for dancing but not the coordination and definitely not the grace. If her partner were anybody but Derek Hough, I'd be very, very worried for her. Len wants more "hip action" but says it's great.  Bruno shows Maria how to work her hips.  Carrie Ann wants her to work on her transitions.
Scores
: Carrie Ann: 7 Len: 7 Bruno: 7
(That's a week 1, couple 1 generous overscore to me.)

New this season: If you're tweeting, be sure to use the #DWTS hashtag - ABC is putting selected tweets up on screen during the kiss-and-cry filler time.

Jack Wagner & Anna Trebunskaya
I am totally OK with Jack Wagner now looking like a cross between David Bowie and John Elway. Jack's excited to be with a redhead because he's been partnered with a lot of blondes. (Cough, Heather Locklear, cough?) Foxtrot to Nancy Sinatra's "Sugar Town." There's a lot of weird business at the beginning with them lying on fake grass and doing leg lifts? Anna is wearing the yellowest shoes that ever yellowed. As Tom notes, the routine appeared to have two endings. Not sure if that was intentional. Bruno calls it "springtime romance at its most uplifting," adding "Week 1, what will you do week 2?" Nothing but praise from Carrie Ann. Len liked the feel of the dance but is critical of Jack's posture and footwork, calling it "haphazard."
Scores
: Carrie Ann: 8 Len: 7  Bruno: 8
Anna's "Call, text, and vote" hand gestures are just adorable.

Donald Driver & Peta Murgatroyd
Donald Driver has some cute, cute kids. Donald has skinny legs and has bunched up his track pants so high in rehearsal they look like Shakespearean poufy pantaloons. Donald is lip-syncing or talking into a microphone at the beginning of their cha cha routine to "Dedication to My Ex (Miss That)" by Lloyd (Thank heavens for Wikipedia - I am way too old and nerdy to have ever known that song). Donald is 100 percent going for it in this routine. I love it when the big tough guys throw off the shackles of "macho" and get into the spirit of dancing.  He's even wearing the high-heeled shoes.  Carrie Ann says Donald "kicked that cha cha's booty." Shots of Donald's kids in the audience and they are still supercute. Len says Donald's excitement got him off his timing a little bit. Bruno calls him a "diamond in the rough" and " a rooster chasing a hen." Donald admits to being a DWTS superfan, having watched since Season 1.
Scores
: Carrie Ann: 7 Len: 7  Bruno: 7
BOO! I thought he was way better than Maria.

Gavin DeGraw & Karina Smirnoff
Gavin is doing "DWTS" because he wants to get out from behind his piano at concerts to make himself "more vulnerable." In case the fedora didn't tell you already how sensitive he is. They're foxtrotting to Lady Antebellum's "I Run to You." I may spend most of this routine trying to figure out if Karina's wearing a dress or  really really wide-legged pants. AHA - the spin reveals: PANTS! With a top made from chandelier crystal strings. It's nice that they've gone green and recycled lighting fixtures for her costume. For Len, the dance wasn't the greatest. Bruno wants Gavin to work on his transitions. There's banter about "stiffening up at the wrong times." Florence Henderson is involved somehow. It's all slightly distressing. Brooke can't understand how a performer can be shy. Gavin does the aw shucks head duck and says, "You're so pretty."
Scores
: Carrie Ann: 7 Len: 6  Bruno: 7

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