Well, I am getting a much later start on this then I had planned. I got caught up in the novel I was reading and just had to finish it. How people ever survived in the days before they could record TV somehow is beyond me.
So this week promises more dancing and another injury to deal with. (Is it just me, or are those becoming more frequent with each passing season?) Shall we get to it? Besides, we get the Viennese Waltz and Jive tonight. And you know how much I love me some Jive.
Susan Lucci & Tony Dovolani – Jive – Yes, I’m going to start complaining about speed on the first one out of the gate. But, honestly, this felt a little slow to me. The big problem was that Susan seemed stiff. She looked like she knew what she was doing, but she just wasn’t confident enough with it to relax and enjoy it. Len praises Susan’s constant standard of good routines. Bruno did mention that she looked a little unsteady at times, but it was still good. Carrie Ann thought it wasn’t an injury, but it was timidity, which is exactly what I said it was. (And I like Carrie Ann’s new haircut.) While backstage, they did tell us that Susan had rolled her ankle this morning while doing a practice run through.
Scores: Carrie Ann – 7 Len – 7 Bruno – 7 Total – 21 Same score as last week. It’s funny how the judges can be all over the place and yet still wind up giving the same score.
Lance Bass & Lacey Schwimmer – Viennese Waltz – These two would have been lots of fun with the Jive, but that’s not what they got. And they decided to stick to a traditional waltz in order to please Len. But he didn’t tone down his hair. In fact, I think it is spikier then it has been. I would say the efforts to be traditional worked, however. This is a very smooth, polished dance. Beautiful to watch, too. I can’t imagine Len having a problem with it. Bruno went first, however. He thought it was good but the effort to do something that wasn’t them made it a little stiff. Carrie Ann thought it was fantastic. And she praised Lance for dancing as much as Lacey was. Len did praise it for musicality and content, calling it Lance’s best dance to date. But he did pick on posture, holds, and flat footedness. Guess there’s just no pleasing some people. Either that or they should have started trying with week one and they might have master those skills already. And if Len is picking on those things, it is a step in the right direction.
Scores: Carrie Ann – 8 Len – 7 Bruno – 7 Total – 22 He’s proud of these scores, as he should be. This is higher than his score last week. I can see where he has room to improve, but if he follows this new strategy, he should be able to do it.
Maurice Green & Cheryl Burke – Jive – This one put a smile on my face from the first note. I loved dancing the swing to this song myself. And it was everything I love in a Jive – high energy, fast, fun, great foot work. And the foot work certainly looked fine to me. He must have conquered the problem he was having during rehearsals. All three of the judges praised it for the same things I did. Len even called it the best dance to date, and Carrie Ann said this week made him a contender.
Scores: Carrie Ann – 8 Len – 8 Bruno – 8 Total – 24 The highest score of the night, although they keep climbing, so we’ll see if that lasts. It is also his highest score so far. I think I would have scored it a little higher, but those are still solid scores.
Rocco DiSpirito & Karina Smirnoff – Viennese Waltz – I was afraid there for a moment that they were going to keep that blindfold on for the entire dance in keeping with the interview segment, but he took it off fairly quickly. It was a good dance overall. I’m not sure I’d say it is the best dance we’ve seen so far, but I was more impressed than I was last week. Although I do think the dancers are going too far in using the judges. A little bit of that goes a long way. And putting those glasses on Len was just ridiculous. Len thought there were elements that were good, but he lost the beat quite a few times. Bruno said he should have kept that blindfold on because he lost the musicality after he took it off. But Carrie Ann said Rocco was the most improved dancers of the season. Yes, he still has work to do, but he is getting better.
Scores: Carrie Ann – 7 Len – 7 Bruno – 6 Total – 20 A definite improvement over last week. But it’s also the low score of the night so far. So we’ll have to see how he holds up as the evening progresses.
Warren Sapp & Kym Johnson – Viennese Waltz – It was an admirable attempt to be smooth, but it wasn’t quite there yet. And that missed underarm turn didn’t help. At least it looked like a missed turn. Having said that, I did like the bits with turning under Kym’s dress. And they did move around the floor quite a bit. Bruno thought he had the character of the dance down. Carrie Ann was blown away as well. Len was impressed as well. Obviously, I was being too hard.
Scores: Carrie Ann – 9 Len – 8 Bruno – 8 Total – 25 Obviously, I wasn’t watching the same dance the judges were. I would have given it a 7. But that makes it the highest dance of the night so far.
Cody Linley & Julianne Hough – Jive – And we’ve got another fast, fun Jive. With a couple air guitar solos on Julianne’s leg to boot. I’m not sure it quite had the content that it should have had, but it was fun. Carrie Ann felt it was a little awkward, especially since she could see he was counting. Len and Bruno thought it was a great, creative start but it got repetitive and boring. I’d certainly agree with that. Maybe that’s where my thought about the content being lacking come from.
Scores: Carrie Ann – 7 Len – 7 Bruno – 7 Total – 21 He’s happy with that, but it puts him near the bottom of the pack. Everyone seems to be clumped in the bottom half of the 20’s this week.
Toni Braxton & Alec Mazo – Viennese Waltz – So they are the couple that is going to push the boundaries a little and put her spin on it. Haven’t they been watching Lance’s reception? Although I must say that Marie Antoinette dress is something else. My first thought when I heard Beethoven’s Fur Elise start was “This could get boring.” Then they starting doing the Manheim Steamroller version. (And I’m sure someone will tell me if it was really theirs or if it was just something that sounded like them.) Even with my initial worry, it still looked like a great Waltz. Yes, it wasn’t as smooth as it should have been. But I kinda liked the differences. No surprise, Len didn’t like it at all. He thought it was too gimmicky. Bruno agreed with Len, but Carrie Ann thought it was great. But she did say it was a matter of taste.
Scores: Carrie Ann – 8 Len – 7 Bruno – 7 Total – 22 Considering how much Len and Bruno trashed it, I wasn’t expecting more than a 6 from them. So I guess I agree with Alec that their scores were surprising. Carrie Ann’s didn’t surprise me. And I definitely side with her in the scores.
Cloris Leachman & Corky Ballas – Jive – So I was curious to see how she woud do with it because it requires so much stamina. The waltz would have been more in keeping with her age. So I know I am going to get slaughtered for this, but it wasn’t a great dance at all. In fact, it wasn’t a dance. All she did was walk around the floor. Corky was actually trying to dance, but I didn’t feel she was even trying. Yes, it was wildly funny. But it wasn’t a dance. Bruno was at a loss for words since it was beyond wacky. Carrie Ann said what she lacked in technique she made up for in entertainment. And Len didn’t get a chance to say much because they ran out of time. Frankly, there isn’t much to say after something like this.
Scores: Carrie Ann – 6 Len – 5 Bruno – 5 Total – 16 Well, that was more then the 1’s that Cloris asked for. And it was rather generous in my opinion. As much fun as she can be, it’s definitely time to start thinking about Cloris leaving the show.
Brooke Burke & Derek Hough – Viennese Waltz – They pointed out that Brooke has been at the top of the leader board before, and this dance proves why she is. The dance was smooth and beautiful. I know I’ve been saying that about most of the other dances, but this one really did stand out about all the others we’ve seen this week. Carrie Ann thinks Brooke is becoming her favorite dancer of the entire show ever. Len says it was the best dance of the season. And Bruno loved it as well.
Scores: Carrie Ann – 9 Len – 10 Bruno – 9 Total – 28 The first 10 of the season. And it came from Len. The highest score of the night and well deserved. I hope this trend continues. Yep, I think I have someone to root for.
And finally the moment that they’ve been teasing us with all night, Misty May-Treanor finally comes out to tell us about her injury. Considering the fact that they’ve been telling us it would be an interview, I knew it couldn’t be good news. And with her coming out on crutches with a huge cast on her leg, I knew I was right. On Friday night, while rehearsing her Jive, she ruptured her Achilles’ tendon. That’s a pretty serious injury that will require surgery to fix. I had a roommate who had that happen to him. And she did confirm that she is out for the rest of the season. She was one of the people I had been rooting for from the beginning so it is especially disappointing. Not that I’d want anyone to leave this way. She is having the surgery I mentioned tomorrow, and she knows she will come back to Volleyball stronger after this is over.
But despite that somber ending of the show, the competition must go on. Here are the standings:
1. Brooke – 28
2. Warren – 25
3. Maurice – 24
4. Lance – 22
4. Toni – 22
6. Susan – 21
6. Cody – 21
8. Rocco – 20
9. Cloris – 16
I think the Encore is easy to predict. As much as I’d love to see Toni’s waltz again, it will be Brooke’s waltz we will get to see.
Now comes the tricky part. If there is an elimination, it really needs to be Cloris who goes. She adds lots of fun to the show, but everyone else is a better dancer and actually seems to be trying.
However, when a dancer has left without being eliminated before, they have kept all the dancers around without eliminating them. Instead, they’ve added the two rankings together the following week, meaning that this week’s votes and scores do count. They haven’t told us that for sure yet, but they hinted that they are doing something different. So my prediction is that we will get down to the final two couples (whether by rank or not) before they tell us that is what they are doing yet again.
And don’t forget that the results show will be on at 8PM Eastern time, but 9PM Mountain and Pacific. (I’m assuming it will be 7PM Central, but they never said.) This one time only time change is due to the final Presidental debate happening tomorrow night.