Dancing with the Stars 3, September 26: The Penalty Boxby Jill Jones -- 09/27/2006
Welcome to Dancing with the Stars! Last week, the couples took on the quickstep and mambo. The challenge came to an end for beauty queen Shanna Moakler and her professional partner Jesse DeSoto. Tonight, our dancing duos will perform either the jive or the tango. Before we get started though, let’s dish about some information I’ve read on various Dancing with the Stars message boards.
Many people are upset that Mario Lopez and Joey Lawrence both downplayed their previous dancing experience. As people are pointing out, Mario danced numerous times on Saved by the Bell and Joey had a brief music career that came complete with several videos. In other words, they both have danced in the past. I understand if this angers you; just don’t stroke out over it because it isn’t worth it.
Also, some fans are already anticipating an all-star version of the show. For the love of all that is good in this world, stop it. Just stop before my eyes pop out of my head. There have only been three seasons of the show so far and in my opinion, it is not time for an all-star program. Instead, let’s blend different reality shows together to come up with new programs. For example, we could do Dancing with Flavor of Love. Imagine Like Dat tripping the light fantastic or Nibblz getting down on the dance floor. See, isn’t that more fun?
I’m sorry. I must be cranky. Thank you for letting me get those thoughts out of my system, though. Now, on with the show!
As always, Tom Bergeron and Samantha Harris welcome us to the program. After the couples are introduced, we move right into the excitement.
Performing first tonight are Cheryl Burke and Emmitt Smith. We learn that Emmitt is a busy man. We also get to meet his wife; she’s a doll.
Cheryl and Emmitt are dancing the tango to “Simply Irresistible.” I love the look on Emmitt’s face; it’s so serious, yet it makes me giggle. The routine doesn’t look or feel like a traditional tango, but it is unique. At the end of it, Emmitt “proposes” to Cheryl.
Judge Len Goodman explains that he and the other judges are looking for a proper ballroom tango. It should contain flexed knees and passion. He then says that Emmitt didn’t do well at all. He scolds Cheryl and Emmitt for a lift that they did. Bruno Tonioli says that Emmitt lacked his normal charisma. Tom has to remind Bruno that the show is only on for 90 minutes tonight; Bruno just keeps going on and on. Carrie Ann Inaba appreciates what they did and feels that the dance wasn’t as bad as Len and Bruno said it was.
The judges’ scores are ready. Carrie Ann gives the performance a seven while Len and Bruno give it a six. Cheryl and Emmitt have 19 points out of 30.
Next up are Monique Coleman and Louis Van Amstel (who became MY Louis last week). Monique learns that the jive is extremely fast. Her mom flies out to watch her practice and dance tonight. Mama is a doll too! Monique is worried that the judges will be mean to her in front of her mom.
They are dancing to “The Heat Is On.” After a tremendous move by Monique, she almost has a wardrobe malfunction. Her attitude is feisty during the performance, and she and Louis seem to enjoy themselves. Toward the end of the routine, she does a split and then twists around Louis. The routine is entertaining and energetic. I don’t think Monique has to fret about what her mom is about to hear.
Len tells us that Monique and Louis were great; it was their best dance. Bruno rambles on, but essentially says they did a wonderful job. Carrie Ann says that Monique is a strong dancer and everyone needs to take note of it. Tom asks Monique’s mom what she thinks. Of course, she loved it.
All three judges give the couple a nine for a total of 27 points. As Monique talks about her mom backstage, she begins to choke up.
The next couple to hit the dance floor is Ashly DelGrosso and Harry Hamlin. Harry tells us that he was happy with their results last week. To do well this week, he observes people doing the tango. Harry says it is all about the passion.
I don’t recognize the song they are dancing to this evening. If anyone knows what it is, please e-mail me. Harry still has a look of concentration on his face, but he seems to do better tonight than he has in the past. The performance comes complete with a rose in Ashly’s mouth. The couple finishes a few seconds behind the music, but other than that and a few missed steps, the performance isn’t bad at all.
Bruno says that there were issues with Harry’s footwork. Carrie Ann explains that Harry is still a bit awkward. Len tells Ashly and Harry that the dance was great; it was a proper tango.
Carrie Ann and Bruno give the couple a seven; Len gives it an eight. Ashly and Harry have 22 points from the judges.
Willa Ford and Maksim Chmerkovskiy are ready with their performance. Willa is becoming discouraged from lack of votes. She says that they are bonding beyond the dance floor. Naughty. We see them fight; both are passionate and it shows.
They are performing the jive to “S.O.S.” Oh, boy, Maksim’s shirt is open in the front. Prrrrrrrr! The dance is cute and fast-paced, but it lacks a special spark. Also, Willa and Maksim perform a lift. What’s with all of the illegal lifts this season?
Carrie Ann says that Willa is the best natural dance on the show. She then reprimands the couple for its lift. Len says that Willa and Maksim are spending their time bonding, but not dancing. Bruno tells Len that he is grumpy. He then talks about cheesecake and being delicious.
Carrie Ann and Len give the performance a seven; Bruno gives it an eight. Willa and Maksim now have 22 points. Backstage, Samantha comments on Willa and Maksim’s relationship. She even goes as far as to say that they are falling for one another. Maksim clearly doesn’t want to discuss it.
Performing for us next are Kym Johnson and Jerry Springer. Kym tells us that Jerry is dedicated despite his silliness. Jerry wants to make it to next week so that he can learn the waltz; his daughter is getting married and he wants to do the waltz with her.
Tonight, they are dancing the tango to “Hernando’s Hideaway.” The routine has a James Bond theme to it, but it lacks the passion of Ashly and Harry’s dance. Jerry also looks stiff, but he seems to be enjoying himself. He even does a jump at the end of the performance.
Bruno says that he saw the Pink Panther, not James Bond. He then explains that the routine was entertaining. Carrie Ann states that this was Kym and Jerry’s best performance. Len compliments Jerry on his footwork and ability to have fun.
All three judges give Kym and Jerry a seven. The couple now has 21 points.
Our next dancers are Sara Evans and Tony Dovolani. Tony states that he is going to bring Sara out of her shell. They are doing a jive that will allow her to show us who she really is.
Sara and Tony are performing to “These Boots Were Made for Walking.” The routine is unique and entertaining. Sara seems to enjoy herself a lot more tonight than in previous weeks. Her footwork has also improved. Sara and Tony look cute in their western attire.
Carrie Ann says that she loved the performance. Len explains that he liked her whole approach; Sara is happy to hear it. Bruno tells her to continue to use her assets… because she has plenty of them. Yikes!
Carrie and Bruno give Sara and Tony an eight while Len gives them a nine. Their total is 25 points.
Dancing next are Karina Smirnoff and Mario Lopez. We’re reminded that the judges didn’t like their performance last week. Karina tells us that their tango is going to be extremely passionate and sexy. I think I better have Yoko leave the room for this dance.
They’re dancing to “What You Waiting For.” Their moves are sharp and crisp. They also match the music beautifully. While I enjoy the dance, I don’t think that the judges will like it; it doesn’t seem proper enough. Also, I don’t feel the passion that was promised. I think I’m dead inside.
Len is angry because Karina and Mario broke their hold midway through the routine; he would have given them a 10 if they hadn’t done that. Bruno says that the dance was the real deal, but Mario is a bad boy; he’s causing the judges to take points away from them. Carrie Ann wants them to respect the rules.
I can’t even begin to describe how uncomfortable the exchange is. I have never seen the judges like this before. I don’t even think they were this harsh when dealing with Master P and his lack of dedication last season. Also, Mario looks like a young man who was caught sneaking into the house after a night of debauchery; he knew there was a good chance that he was going to get caught, but he went for it any way.
Carrie Ann and Bruno both say they would have given the couple a 10, but instead give them an eight. Len gives the couple a six. Karina and Mario have 22 points; they could have had three goobers.
Vivica A. Fox and Nick Kosovich are up next. We see Vivica crying over the judges’ compliments last week; she is very emotional. We also find out that she followed up on Carrie Ann’s advice and took a ballet class. She feels this will help her with the tango.
Vivica and Nick are dancing this evening to “Hey Sexy Lady.” After moving around the dance floor, the couple performs a faster series of steps. They also look the part of traditional tango performers. The routine is quite enjoyable. I think the judges will love it, especially after Karina and Mario’s dance.
Bruno says that Vivica was dangerous and sexy. Carrie Ann calls Vivica over to her in order to congratulate her on a job well done; Vivica is overwhelmed. Len explains that the “A” in Vivica’s name stands for attack, animal, aggression, etc. He is thrilled with the dance.
All three judges give the performance a nine; Vivica and Nick have 27 points. Nick is calm, but Vivica is going crazy. She’s really enjoying herself.
On a side note, I want to thank Beto for e-mailing me about the song this couple performed to last week; it was “Betece” by Africando. I don’t always recognize or know the songs that are used, so I appreciate the help that RNO readers give me.
Dancing the final dance this evening are Edyta Sliwinska and Joey Lawrence. Joey explains that they are putting a lot of Elvis moves into the routine. Edyta also wants to do a jump at the beginning of it. He says it is going to be nuts.
They’re performing to “Blue Suede Shoes.” The routine is going well until I see an illegal lift. This isn’t going to be good. Overall the performance is energetic. Edyta and Joey move well together. They also seem to have fun throughout the routine by throwing in some air guitar moves and a lot of hip shaking.
Bruno starts the critiques by telling the couple that there are to be no lifts. Carrie Ann tells them that they were fabulous; they have to cut out the lifts though. Len is angry; he feels that they are trying to be too clever by doing handstands and back flips. Tom makes a joke that actually brings a smile to Len’s face. I’m impressed… not that Len smiled, but that somebody found Tom to be amusing.
Backstage, Joey apologizes for the illegal moves that he and Edyta performed. One thing that I don’t understand is why the professionals are putting lifts into the routines if they know they are not permitted. It’s very perplexing.
Carrie Ann and Bruno give the couple an eight. Len angrily gives it a six. Edyta and Joey have 22 points out of 30; I’m sure it would have been higher if it weren’t for the illegal moves.
Tom quickly tells us who is in first and last place. I’m nicer than that, so I’ll give you’re the overall standings:
Come back Wednesday night as we find out which couple will be eliminated from the competition. My money is on Willa and Maksim, but I’ve been wrong before (and I don’t think I’m ready to let go of him yet). In any case, I won’t be covering the results show; one of my fellow RNO recappers will summarize all the action for you instead. I promise to return next Tuesday though and to be in a better mood!
Jill is an east coast mama who loves sharks, zombie movies, and reality television. She welcomes your comments about these and other subjects, and can be reached at email@example.com.
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