Dancing with the Stars – Sambas and Tangos

You could almost say this is part two. As they reminded us at the beginning, because of Misty’s injury, Rocco stayed even though he was the low score. However, the judge’s and viewer’s votes are carried over. So he and who ever else are near the bottom have a lot to prove if they want to stay. The real question is, can they do it?

Maurice Greene & Cheryl Burke – Samba – I did a double take when I saw Cheryl’s hair. Wow, it was poofy! Of course, so was his wig. And the disco flavor to their dance was no surprise after seeing their outfits. He was trying, but watching him dance next to Cheryl made it obvious how stiff he was. I’d say this wasn’t quite as good as his Jive last week. Len picked up on what I did. It was good but it needed to be refined. Bruno and Carrie Ann were on the same wavelength.
Scores: Carrie Ann – 6 Len – 7 Bruno – 7 Total – 20 I think I agree with Carrie Ann’s 6 on this one. Just too stiff to score much higher.

Cody Linley & Julianne Hough – Tango – I enjoyed this dance so much more than last week’s Jive. It had plenty of variety and kept moving around the floor in rather intricate steps for a Tango. It looked to me like Cody messed up a couple times, like when Julianne was high kicking in front of the judges. He did it the last time only. Either way, a much improved dance. Bruno praised it as a step up technique wise and a proper Tango with no gimmicks. Carrie Ann noticed that his feet were getting tangled in Julianne’s outfit. Not enough for missteps but enough to throw him a little off balance. Maybe that’s why he wasn’t high kicking. Len said it was his best dance so far.
Scores: Carrie Ann – 7 Len – 8 Bruno – 8 Total – 23 I expected Len and Bruno to be higher than Carrie Ann, so that part didn’t surprise me. I could see an argument for all 8’s here, however. It really was a strong dance.

Toni Braxton & Alec Mazo – Samba – I know the Samba is the party dance, but this was a very sexy routine. Of course, Toni’s costume certainly helped with that. And it had the hips that Maurice’s lacked. Plus it looked like they nailed those Samba rolls to me. Carrie Ann commented on their chemistry but did tell Toni to work on lowering her shoulders. Len praised it but did catch an error in their Promenade Runs that I missed that put them in a “state of flux” for a while. Like Len, Bruno praised it overall.
Scores: Carrie Ann – 7 Len – 7 Bruno – 8 Total – 22 Right after I watched it, I expected 8’s or higher scores, but after Len and Bruno commented on a mistake, I did expect something around this. It’s a shame it wasn’t perfect because she looked great to me.

Cloris Leachman & Corky Ballas – Tango – Well, they are going to go for better technique, so let’s see how they do. Honestly, it isn’t in the same league as the best stars, but it was a huge improvement over last week’s Jive. Heck, Cloris was actually dancing. Maybe not enough to save her from being near the bottom, but better than I’d seen so far. Len loved it, but Bruno praised it poetically. Carrie Ann even apologized for underestimating Cloris’ dancing ability. I’ve got to say I did, too.
Scores: Carrie Ann – 8 Len – 7 Bruno – 7 Total – 22 Leave it to Cloris to complain about her highest score of the competition. No, I don’t think she was joking about the prejudice, why do you ask? :) Seriously, though, if these were the only scores that counted this week, it would certainly put her in the middle of the pack.

Rocco DiSpirito & Karina Smirnoff – Samba – I was wondering how they were going to deal with Karina’s tail just as Rocco took is off. This was a good dance, but it didn’t seem to have that much content to me. In fact, I’d say it is the weakest dance of the night so far. I seriously doubt it will be enough to keep him from going home. Bruno said he likes Rocco, but Rocco doesn’t have a musical bone in his body. Carrie Ann agreed. Len praised Rocco for doing what his mother told him to do, having fun.
Scores: Carrie Ann – 6 Len – 6 Bruno – 6 Total – 18 The lowest score so far tonight. Heck, he’s even tied with Cloris at this point. I think it would take a complete phone campaign to save him now.

Susan Lucci & Tony Dovolani – Tango – I can see why the Tango is often called the actor’s dance. Susan nailed that one. Technique wise, it seemed a bit small, but they really made up for it in the drama and passion. And I did love all those small intricate steps they were doing. This is definitely my favorite dance of the night so far. Carrie Ann called it moving art. Len said it was her best dance to date (and not at all timid.) Bruno said she finally release her tough broad.
Scores: Carrie Ann – 8 Len – 8 Bruno – 8 Total – 24 Susan’s best score yet and the highest score of the night so far. I don’t expect it to last, but it is nothing to be ashamed of.

Brooke Burke & Derek Hough – Samba – The choreography at the very beginning was fun, but it did seem to take a while for the dance to get started. Once it did, watch out. There’s a reason that Brooke is a front runner, and she showed it tonight. That had great moves with perfect hip action. (But I do predict that Len will complain about Brooke ripping open Derek’s shirt as he talks about the gimmicks.) Sure enough, Len wasn’t that impressed. Said it was too erotic. And, surprise surprise, too gimmicky with the glasses and ripping open Derek’s shirt. Do I know the judges or what? (Some things are easy to predict.) Bruno and Carrie Ann really loved it, however.
Scores: Carrie Ann – 9 Len – 8 Bruno – 9 Total – 26 I almost called this before they told us what the scores were. Susan’s high mark didn’t last long. We have a new leader of the night.

Lance Bass & Lacey Schwimmer – Tango – Well, the Lance and Lacey flair is back from the get go with that lavender in their hair and the N’Synch “strings” beginning. Again, they had intricate foot work. And it looked like Lance did a pretty good job with the hold. It had some flair, but it was still pretty traditional with most of the special flavor reserved for the beginning and the end. Bruno called it “quirky with a gothic twist and yet always a Tango.” And he said Lance could go all the way. Carrie Ann thought it was the first time that Lance had shown he could really dance. (And yes, Carrie Ann, that is the proper word.) Len called him Sir Dance a Lot. Maybe Lance has finally found the balance between doing the dance correctly and inserting his personality.
Scores: Carrie Ann – 9 Len – 8 Bruno – 9 Total – 26 Best score so far for Lance. We’ve seen that a lot this week. And he’s just tied with Brooke for tonight. He was happy with that and he’s got good reason to be.

Warren Sapp & Kym Johnson – Samba – I kept forgetting who I was supposed to be watching here. Kym kept catching my eye for some reason. I’m sure that outfit wasn’t it. :) But I was watching enough to see Warren flirt with Carrie Ann. And what I was watching wasn’t as impressive as we’ve seen tonight. Again, he seemed stiff. Carrie Ann did think it lacked a bit of content. Len said it was fun but Kym did too much of the dancing. And Bruno made it three for three.
Scores: Carrie Ann – 8 Len – 7 Bruno – 7 Total – 22 I guess that flirting paid off since Carrie Ann gave him an extra point over the men. We sure had most of the stars around this point of the score board this week, didn’t we?

Since both week’s scores count for the show tomorrow night, I’m going to rank the stars by their combined scores. I’m not sure that will cut down on the ties we would have had from just tonight’s scores, however.

1. Brooke – 54
2. Lance – 48
3. Warren – 47
4. Susan – 45
5. Toni – 44
5. Cody – 44
7. Maurice – 42
8. Rocco – 38
8. Cloris – 38

Predictions: Encore – At some point, Brooke is going to get the encore. But I don’t think it will be this week. With the big break though that Susan had, I think she and Tony will get to do their Tango again. And it was certainly a wonderful routine, so I’m not complaining.

Leaving: Who knows if they will ever do a bottom two. But since they haven’t so far, I’m not going to predict. I’m just going to back up my prediction that Rocco will be the one to leave. If he would have left last week when he had a six point lead from the judges over Cloris, he doesn’t have a prayer when they are tied. And, honestly, it would be cruel to send Cloris home in a week when she actually tried and did a good job. We can save her for next week.

Mark

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