The most dance-tastic moments from your favorite sitcoms
Today is National Dance Day, and the Dizzy Feet Foundation is encouraging everyone to hit the dance floor, get their groove on, boogie-woogie, and other activities along those lines. So in celebration—and in an effort to provide a little inspiration—we’ve rounded up some of the best dance-y moments from your favorite sitcoms. These characters really know how to get down, cut a rug, shake what their momma gave ‘em, and more stuff like that.
Is there anyone who can listen to those first few seconds of Earth Wind and Fire’s Shining Star and not think of Elaine’s “full-body dry heave set to music?” The thumbs, the little kicks, her complete obliviousness at how—umm—original?—her moves are…as George so perfectly put it, “Sweet fancy Moses.”
The Mindy Project
When Mindy is bumming after her “Christmas party sex trap” doesn’t quite go as planned, her spirits are lifted when Danny delivers pretty much the best secret Santa gift ever: a dance routine to Aaliyah’s “Dust Yourself Off.” Is there anything more adorable than how proud he is of himself when he brushes his hand over his opposite shoulder, perfectly in time to the lyrics, “dust yourself off and try again”?
Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
When you’ve been living in a bunker for 15 years, it’s hard to keep up with the latest dance trends, but Kimmy Schmidt was quick to catch on.
Liz Lemon refused her flu shot as an act of solidarity to the crew when there weren’t enough to go around. But when her previously canceled vacation was back on, and everyone around her was breathing their flu-y germs all over her, she got desperate. She would do anything. Anything.
“If you want a shot,” says Chris Parnell as Dr. Pepper, “you’re going to have to dance for it.”
And she does. Without protest or question. She just seemed grateful for the opportunity.
When Nick dragged Jess onto the dance floor at a wedding during a slow song, sad and depressed over seeing his ex, you thought you were in for a tender moment between these two roommates. And then Nick starts doing the chicken dance. In slow motion. With gusto. To the tune of Groovy Kind of Love by Phil Collins. It was perfect.
There are so many great dance moments in Scrubs, so before we get to the “chosen one,” a nod must be given to Donald Faison as Turk, impressing the heck out of the janitor with his smooth moves set to Bell Biv DeVoe’s Poison. “I don’t know what ‘it’ is,” says the janitor, “but he’s got it.”
Ultimately though, there are few moments in television history I remember laughing harder at than when—via J.D.’s fantasy world—we get a look at how it feels walking into the hospital as a surgeon. Tears of laughter. Rolling. Streaming down my face.
The Mindy Project…again
Okay yes, we already talked about Danny Castellano’s dance moves, but technically, this second dance moment is a performance by Danny’s alter ego. Turns out he did a little exotic dancing to help with his medical school tuition, and Mindy didn’t look too upset about it mid-Diamond Dan strip tease. The best is when she grabs her glasses from the bedside table and shoves them onto her face, wide-eyed. Yeah, you’re not going to want your vision to be even a little bit compromised for this one.
How I Met Your Mother
Marshall ditches a boring wine tasting party he and Lily are hosting to meet up with the rest of the gang at a dance club that’s so loud, you can’t hear a word anyone is saying. But really, are words even necessary when Jason Segel hits the dance floor? Hang onto your hats, kids.
The Routine. So bad it’s good. When Monica and Ross get to be “party people” at the taping of Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve, they do not waste the opportunity. They pull out some old school moves—literally—from a high school dance competition that earned them an honorable mention in the brother-sister dance category. Although, they did update it a little: Ross catches Monica in the final jump, rather than vice versa. They didn’t even plan it—they just knew. It’s a brother-sister thing.
Parks and Recreation
When Leslie pulls the trigger on leasing a house, she is disappointed when her big moment falls a little flat in the drama department. Good thing she has the best best friend ever—Ann Perkins knows exactly what to do.
Ann [to Leslie]: “Say it again.”
Leslie: “Martha, I wanna lease this house.”
Ann hits play on her cell phone releasing the cued-up “Party Rock Anthem” by LMFAO, and they have a mini, two-person dance party to celebrate. When Ann starts flickering the lights in the already very well lit room, and Leslie does that clap…I mean, how do you not rewind that immediately upon seeing it?
Oh, the Bluth family chicken dance. Reserved for those special moments when someone’s trepidation needs to be mocked in an extremely ridiculous fashion. They each had their own—ahem—interpretation of the chicken dance (those who participate in the ritual, that is), though not a one of them really ever resembled an actual chicken, much to Michael’s subdued bewilderment: “Has anyone in this family ever even seen a chicken?”
The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air
Two words: The Carlton. You know it. You know it well.
Everybody ready to dance, now? It’s not too late to participate in National Dance Day! Get more information here.
[Images NBC Universal and Netflix]