Pop Culture

Elizabeth Berkley performs pill-popping 'Saved by the Bell' tribute on 'DWTS'

Elizabeth Berkley and Val Chmerkovskiy got "So Excited" on "Dancing With the Stars."

Monday night was Memorable Year night on "Dancing With the Stars," wherein the stars shared the times that really moved them — through dance. But by the end of the show, it was viewers who found themselves waltzing down memory lane.

That's because actress Elizabeth Berkley took them back to school — Bayside High, class of 1993, to be exact.

Yes, channeling her "Saved by the Bell" alter ego, Jessie Spano, Berkley delivered a faithful, hilarious and oh-so-apt tribute to a fan-favorite scene for the classic sitcom — the moment Zach (Mark-Paul Gosselaar) found her strung on the hard stuff … caffeine pills.

In the ballroom version of events, Elizabeth was flying high on "DWTS"-brand jive pills, and when partner Val Chmerkovskiy confronted her, she couldn't contain herself.

"I'm so excited! I'm so excited! I'm so … ready," she said hysterically before kicking off a jive to the only possible song to suit the setup, "I'm So Excited."

As she bounced her way through the high-stepping routine (while Mario Lopez, aka A.C. Slater, looked on), "Saved by the Bell" fans stepped over to Twitter to express their own excitement.







But unfortunately for Elizabeth, the "Dancing" judges weren't quite as excited.

Well, returning head judge Len Goodman liked what he saw and Bruno Tonioli thought it was fun, but Carrie Ann Inaba nitpicked the kicks and spotted a small slip early in the dance.

All of that resulted in a 26 for Elizabeth, and on any other night, that would have been a boon. But the scores were sky-high for other dancers on Memorable Year night, and a 26 left Elizabeth in jeopardy.

Good thing for her, scores only mean so much on "Dancing With the Stars."

As if to prove that point, Christina Milian hit the dance floor with a cha-cha that wowed the panel. Bruno called it "indecently hot." Carrie Ann dubbed it "something special." And Len not only considered it "fantastic, he handed out the first 10 of the season for the hip-shaking dance (giving her a total of 28 points).

But when it was all over, it turned out to be Christina's last dance of the season. Those scores couldn't counteract a lack of viewer votes.

The news came as a shock to Christina, who turned to pro partner Mark Ballas and said, "What?!" when her elimination was announced.

"It's a true shock," she said. "I wasn't expecting that."

The night was full of shocks.

Just as surprising as Christina's not-so-helpful 10 from Len was Amber Riley's 7 from Len — after performing one heck of a high-energy foxtrot.

Amber was on point throughout the routine, as reflected in the scores she got from Carrie Ann (9) and Bruno (yet another 10 for the season). But Len's problem with the performance didn't have anything to do with her. It was simply the fact that pro Derek Hough just didn't put enough foxtrot into their foxtrot.

Corbin Bleu got a shocking score too. His foxtrot continued the 10-trend (thanks to Bruno), but he almost saw double perfect digits. It seems Carrie Ann would have given him a 10 too, but she deducted a point for a lift at the beginning of the dance.

Corbin's partner, Karina Smirnoff, protested, insisting her toe always stayed on the floor. The video backs up her story, but as host Tom Bergeron informed fans later in the evening, judge's scores can't be changed.

Still, it's a safe bet that Leah Remini wishes they could be. After delivering a dance to celebrate her liberation from … well, most likely the Church of Scientology, but she didn't name names Monday night, Leah learned that her contemporary routine didn't leave Len and the gang smiling.

They gave her just 22 points, and she held back from giving them a piece of her mind.

"What am I thinking? You don't want to know," she told Tom. "No, you really don't. It's not for this audience."


As for the rest of the pack, Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi, Jack Osbourne and Brant Daugherty all tied with 27 points for their respectable efforts for the night. And Bill Engvall, with just 24 points, at least edged out Leah and escaped last place.