Dancing With The Stars Raises The Walking Dead With A Second Full Week Of Routines
Or should that be 'the dancing dead'?
With so many couples to dance tonight, there isn't much of an introduction. And tomorrow night will be our first elimination, finally! The show just gets right to the couples, so I will do the same.
13. Rick Perry & Emma: Quickstep
Ugh, do we have to? Fine. Rick Perry knows he sucked last week and hopes to improve this week by dancing to the theme from Green Acres. Does anyone under thirty even know what that song is/what show it was? Or who the Gabor sisters were? ["Is this producer shade?" - Ed.] Anyway, this is much better than last week, but it's still stiff and awkward. And Rick Perry has to go kiss his wife afterward because he was dancing with another lady, I guess? His wife looks PISSED. No smile at all. I don't know if she didn't want to be on camera or she's mad about how terrible he was or what. The judges are split; Bruno hated it but Carrie Ann and Len (!) are kinder. Scores: 22/40.
12. Jake T. Austin & Jenna: Cha Cha
Oh, Lord, he's dancing to the Diego theme song. Although, I guess what else is he going to dance to? He does the Diego voice during rehearsals and it's kind of creepy to see a grown man doing that voice. I might have PTSD from when my kids were toddlers. Wow, Jake has no rhythm. He does all the moves in the right order but no musicality at all. When he's dancing alone, it's the most obvious. When he's in hold, Jenna can cover a lot of his uglier steps. He's not as bad as Rick Perry but he's not great. The judges all agree that he improved from last week, but his timing is off. Scores: 24/40.
11. Maureen McCormick & Artem: Quickstep
Maureen was really bummed out by her low scores last week, and she has a really sour look on her face during introductions. She got Florence Henderson to help out with their opening skit since they are dancing to the theme from The Brady Bunch. Then again, Florence seems like she would go to the opening of an envelope. I don't know what weird time signature they are using, but it's totally messing up the lyrics. But it works for Maureen. (Almost typed Marcia, probably not for the last time.) She does a great job -- good posture, good frame, good footwork. It's a little slow without a ton of content, but she does well with what she was given. The judges thought her technique improved and she looked like she was having fun, though they saw a few tiny flubs. Scores: 26/40.
10. Amber Rose & Maks: Viennese Waltz
Wow, Amber Rose is unrecognizable dressed as Daenerys Targaryen from Game Of Thrones. Maks is looking good as Khal Drogo. Amber says that she blacked out last week and doesn't remember anything about performing her routine. I want Amber to be great so badly, and she's just not. Her arms are pretty but her footwork and posture are wobbly at best. And she needs more intensity. Julianne asks her about her shoes, and Amber admits that they were slippery and that she nearly fell a few times. That would explain the wobbly part. Scores: 24/40.
9. Ryan Lochte & Cheryl: Quickstep
Before Ryan dances, they show more footage of what happened last week, and those protesters were, like, middle-aged adults. I figured it was a bunch of doofus teens. Maybe they were from Brazil and thought Ryan made their country look bad? It's also kind of mean that they made Ryan wait and go last in the order, like he wasn't nervous enough? However, they should not fill Ryan's roll-in package with talking heads, because he is...not smart. And not good at talking. Anyway, he seems much happier this week and he goes full out while dancing to the theme from The Muppet Show. It's a fun routine, action-packed. Ryan misses a few steps but overall, he looks pretty good. He's got a lot of room to improve, though. The judges loved his energy and attitude and hope he comes back next week. Scores: 24/40.
8. Jana Kramer & Gleb: Tangp
Jana used to be on One Tree Hill, so she's dancing to the theme, and Gavin DeGraw is there to perform it. I mean, what else does he have to do, plus he's an alumnus of the show. Right? He was on the show, wasn't he? I didn't imagine that? Guys, there have been so many seasons of this show. Anyway, in rehearsals, Jana hurts her back and is told by the doctor that if she has too much pain, she'll have to quit. But it really hurts. Boy, there could not be a worse routine to try with back pain; she spends 90%of it doing backbends and dips. She covers well, and her footwork is good, but she needs to learn to point her toes when she kicks. She also needs to be more stable on her non-kicking foot. Maybe Gleb could choreograph fewer kicks since she's kind of terrible at them? The judges could tell she was injured, and Julianne and Bruno both point out the toe-pointing issue. Scores: 29/40
7. Vanilla Ice & Witney: Foxtrot
I guess I'm just going to call him Rob, because that's what Witney calls him and it feels weird to call him Vanilla or Ice. Anyway, Rob is a dad, and Witney wants to show people that softer side. They dance to "Love & Marriage" of Married With Children fame. Rob does have musicality, but his steps in hold are too stiff. He doesn't quite get the posture thing and goes ramrod straight. His arms are good and he has nice lines, but he's doing more of a lip-sync than a dance routine, and sometimes he falls out of character. Carrie Ann tells him not to lip-sync, and all the judges advise him to balance out his movements because he's got a lot of potential. Scores: 26/40.
6. Calvin Johnson Jr & Lindsay: Foxtrot
Calvin is dressed up like Urkel and they are dancing to the Family Matters theme. Calvin says in rehearsals that he appreciates the chance to let loose because he is pretty serious when he's playing football. Their routine is fun and charming and technically pretty good, but not perfect. Calvin gets into the Urkel of it all without being too smurfy; he's graceful and hits all of the moves. The judges are delighted with how fun they are to watch. Scores: 28/40.
5. Marilu Henner and Derek: Foxtrot
Derek is dressed up like Taxi's Rev. Jim instead of Bobby, which just reminds me that I had such a crush on Jeff Conaway back in those days (of elementary school). He and John Schneider were just it for me. Anyway, they are going to try to dance to the theme from Taxi, which seems way too noodly. Derek feels the same, and he struggles with the choreography. The end result is really nice, though it doesn't have the wow factor of Derek's usual routines. It gave me nostalgia feels, and I didn't see any problems with Marilu's performance at all. She didn't look nearly as stiff as last week. The judges loved it. Scores: 29/40.
4. Kenny "Babyface" Edmond & Allison: Argentine Tango
They are dancing to the X-Files theme, and they have to call Toni Braxton in to get Babyface to be less shy and more sexy? Because she's like a little sister to him? I don't know. I don't think Toni Braxton showed up when her sister was on the show so I guess Babyface still has juice. You can tell Babyface feels weird about rubbing his hands all over Allison's body, but his footwork is fantastic. I don't love the choreography but I am excited to see what else Babyface can do this season. Carrie Ann really loves how well he understands the music and translates that into his moves. Scores: 30/40.
3. James Hinchcliffe & Sharna: Paso Doble
Their routine is inspired by The Walking Dead. You all love to hum that theme song, right? It's a real toe tapper. James has to miss a lot of rehearsal because of a race, and they end up pulling together the routine in a day and a half. I have to say, I love the reimagining of the Paso as a zombie/human battle instead of bullfighter/cape. It actually really works. And James is good. He doesn't miss a step and has rhythm and performs well. And he fully commits to the dance. He might win most improved, because he's got all the raw material. The judges give him some small areas where he could improve, but are mostly complimentary. He was underscored, though. Scores: 29/40.
2. Terra Jole & Sasha: Quickstep
They are dancing to the theme from Bewitched, so now that will be in my head for a week. In rehearsals, Sasha tries to figure out how to modify the traditional moves for the reality of Sasha's body, but he doesn't make a big deal about it, which is nice. And Terra looks good! Her posture is the best I've seen tonight, and she barely misses a step. I saw one small flub but she covered well. Tom asks Sasha if he was Dick York or Dick Sargent and Artem says, "I was a universal Dick." Sasha! That was actually pretty hilarious. The judges compliment her frame and footwork. Scores: 31/40.
1. Laurie Hernandez & Val: Jive
Laurie had to dance right after the Lochte kerfuffle last week and she nailed it anyway. This week, she is dancing to the DuckTales, which works, because she's a real-life cartoon character. Her routine has approximately three times the content of any other routine we've seen tonight and she hits every step. There might even be too much content, because she seems to struggle to fit it all in sometimes, but that's a choreography problem, not a performance problem. You can't take your eyes off Laurie while she dances. I don't see how she can lose this season unless people just get sick of how good she is. Scores: 32/40.