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Dancing With The Stars Recap: Kurt Warner Tangos, Cha-Cha-Chas With Abandon

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Since Dancing With The Stars celebrated its 200th show last night, past champions were trotted out, accompanied by flashing lights and dramatic musical introductions. There was a team component, with former Olympians Kristi Yamaguchi and Apolo Ohno picking dancers like it was gym class. Kurt Warner and partner Anna were on Team Apolo, with Jennifer Grey and Brandi. Yeah, totally stacked, because Kristi boneheadedly inexplicably picked Bristol first, proving that Kristi hasn't watched the show yet this year. Rick Fox and Kyle rounded out Team Kristi.

Both teams danced the Cha-cha-cha, with Team Apolo and their questionable facial hair facing Team Kristi's sparkly tuxedos. Team Apolo's Cha-cha with attitude won the day, with Kurt declaring he'd "join this team anytime." Really, Kurt? Even with the required bandanna? Not that anyone cares, but team scores were added to the individual scores. More after the jump.

This feels unnecessarily complicated, but for each individual dance, a past celebrity came out as a guest judge, to first banter awkwardly, grope the host, and watch highlights of their original dance, then a current contestant came out and danced to the same song while everyone sat around and wondered when it would end and why Bristol was still on the show (or perhaps that was just me).

Kurt and Anna danced the tango to Robert Palmer's "Simply Irresistible," ala Emmit Smith in Season 3. While practicing, Anna kept explaining how easy it was, so Kurt took her to a Cards practice where she was terrible at football -- take that, Anna. Larry Fitzgerald offered to take Judge Len out, while Cards fans cried softly into their Super Bowl XLIII t-shirts at the sight of a perfectly healthy Kurt and Larry on the television screen at the same time.

Back to the dance ... Kurt was all pin-striped special agent to Anna's homage to classic romantic bondage, which I wouldn't attempt to pull off unless a Russian professional ballroom dancer. To this viewer, Kurt looked a bit uptight, but the judges universally loved it, with Bruno effusive, Len granting grudging approval, Carrie squirmy and Emmit declaring it awesome. They got 34/40 and, adding in the team scores, received a 61/70. Not bad for a self-declared slow white guy.

As for the rest of them:

  • Kyle and Lacey - Danced the Paso Doble ala Mel B (former Spice Girl, lead host groper), which required Kyle to be all tough, aggressive and sexy, which was a bit of a stretch, but the Disney kid pulled it off. Kyle's fast becoming a sentimental favorite; anyone who draws on a fake six-pack with magic marker on themselves on national TV is alright. 59/70.
  • Bristol and Mark - Bristol danced the Viennese Waltz for guest judge Kelly Osborne, because Kelly Osborne and Bristol Palin are so very similar. Kelly was gracious, declaring it beautiful, but the rest of the judges were harsher. Carrie described it as swinging wildly from swan to pigeon and threw out some bread crumbs. Bristol pronounced herself "thrilled" in a monotone. Excellent. 58/70.
  • Rick Fox and Cheryl - This was freaky. Dressed in kelly-green from head to toe (yes, green shoes), Rick was all "Fun!" which consisted of manically making ridiculous faces while dancing the quick-step. Helio Castoneves was the guest judge and seemed to have the biggest ego of anyone there, causing host Tom to ask if there was no modesty filter in the guest seat. No, Tom, the only modesty filter is in the costume department -- it looks like a giant pair of cycling shorts. 61/70.
  • Brandi and Maks - Brandi is pretty insecure for a pop star, so having a bully like Maks as a partner is great for her future mental breakdown. However, they tackled a sultry foxtrot and, as has been the case in recent weeks, did fantastic. 64/70.
  • Jennifer Grey and Derrick - Jennifer is also cruising rapidly for some sort of meltdown; this one might be physical. A fatigued Jennifer looked (almost) her age, but pushed through with a hot mess of a tango. Hot mess in a good way -- this former favorite looks like she'll have to work hard to knock off Brandi. 64/70.