It's down to the final five couples on Dancing with the Stars
, and tonight, each couple will have to prove themselves in not one, but two entirely different routines. Some celebrities, such as Ty Murray and Shawn Johnson, have proven themselves to be more adept at the traditional ballroom styles, while others have excelled at the sexy Latin styles. Tonight, both different styles will be judged, meaning that the most well-rounded dancers will have the advantage.
Stay with me tonight as I share with you my live thoughts. Also, you can keep up-to-date with the goings-on of Dancing with the Stars
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Live! From Hollywood! This is Dancing with the Stars
OK, well first, I'd like to take a moment to plug a personal, but related project: "Dancing with the Writers Who Write About Dancing with the Stars"
. My fellow writer Meghan and I challenged each other to a dance-off, DWTS
-style. Check it out!
One thing I forgot to note above is that each celebrity is required to do a solo in their Latin round. At the very least, this should be interesting.
The episode opens immediately with a random medley of ballroom dances performed by three pairs of professionals, who will be back later tonight to perform some more. I guess, even though there are 10 routines on tap for tonight, there still isn't enough material to fill the whole two hours.
Next, we have a video of the three judges expounding on the strengths and weaknesses of the five remaining celebrities. Melissa Rycroft's ballet training is a blessing and a curse since she likes to lead with her toe instead of her heel. Gilles Marini has done great with passionate styles, but he's going to have to step up his technique as well. Lil' Kim has to work on her holds and be elegant. Shawn Johnson needs to work on her posture, and Ty Murray just has to not be a hot mess.
The Ballroom Round
Shawn Johnson and Mark Ballas - Quickstep
In rehearsal, Shawn has a hard time learning all her steps and moving fast enough. The stress is really getting to her, and rehearsals really don't look like fun anymore. Oh sad.
But tonight, she is all smiles. She looks much happier than she did earlier in the week. They dance to the Aladdin
song, This is actually one of the better quicksteps that I've seen on this show. They get a standing ovation and Shawn looks really surprised.
Len says that this was a really fun dance and says that she did great, but they broke the choreography rule for the quickstep, which is that they have to remain in hold for the entirety of the routine except for a little bit in the beginning and a bit at the end. The other two judges agree. Carrie Ann even says that this was Shawn's best dance ever, but she'll have to take off a point for breaking the rule.
Carrie Ann: 9
Total: 27 out of 30. Which really would have been a perfect 30 if they didn't break the hold rule!
Ty Murray and Chelsie Hightower - Argentine tango
Last week, Len told Ty that if he doesn't step it up, he's gotta hit the trail. Ty loves a challenge, so I'm expecting a lot from him here tonight. Especially since lifts are allowed in this style, and he is one strong S.O.B.
I am immediately in love with Chelsie's whole outfit and hair and everything. It's so saucy, just like the little leg whips that they exchange in the beginning of the routine. The lifts are fabulous too.
Bruno starts off the critique saying that it was passionate and strong, but not as smooth as he would have liked it to be. Carrie Ann is also a bit condescending, saying that it was a pretty good job. Len generously says that Ty and Chelsie truly captured the flavor of the Argentine tango, and although Ty is not a natural performer, he produced his best dance yet. (Len also says something about why he's on medication. Does someone write his lines for him?)
Carrie Ann: 8
Total: 25 out of 30
Editor's note: Please help me out! I was having many technical difficulties while watching Dancing with the Stars tonight, so I don't think I am really qualified to put together my usual Performance Rankings for the Top 5. Vote in the showdown that I created, and I'll take your results and publish them into a slideshow with your comments tomorrow!
Vote here: Dancing with the Stars 8: Top 5 Performance Rankings>>
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-Debbie Chang, BuddyTV Staff Writer
(Image courtesy of ABC)