Recap: Dancing with the Stars - It's Time to Tango (and Jive)!

Tonight's featured dances on DWTS are the tango and the jive, and because it's week three, we just know the judges will be tough. Will their critiques dim our celeb-dancers' razzle-dazzle?

First up are Marlee Matlin (rocking a slinky, sequin-y dress) and partner Fabian Sanchez. They did a high-energy jive that seemed to please the judges, who praised Marlee for her great attitude and technique despite a few timing issues. Marlee is getting better and better and she seems to have such a great, fun relationship with Fabian, who's quite the jokester. I thought it was hilarious when he yelled "Can you hear me?" in Marlee's ear during rehearsal. Hee. Score: 21

Nicest Guy in the World Steve Guttenberg (The Gute) and partner Anna Trebunskaya are giving the tango a go. On stage, The Gute slapped on a serious "tango face", but it still looked really comedic to me, if not constipated. But the judges all agree that The Gute is much improved this week, and gave props on his footwork. But seriously, folks, isn't Steve just the nicest? Score: 21

Cristian de la Fuente and Cheryl Burke delivered an energetic jive (but can a jive be anything but energetic?), and they kicked and skipped their way to a great score. I was afraid Cristian was going to kick that spotlight off the floor during that final sliding move, but the judges loved their performance. Cristian is another much-improved dancer. Can he be a true contender? I always love his funny banter backstage, it's like he has too much adrenaline after the dance and can't contain the excitement. Score: 25

Mario and partner Karina Smirnoff had great scores coming into this week, but as we saw in the pre-dance footage, Mario's schedule has been so jam-packed that he and Karina barely had time to practice. Did it show in their tango? Yes. Though they had some great moves, they were awkward and had quite a few missteps. They danced to Roxanne, so I assume that Karina was supposed to be playing a "girl of the night" and maybe Mario was trying to stop her? But as Carrie Ann pointed out, it just looked like they were fighting. Len was really harsh on the pair though—calling the performance "a mess." Ouch. It wasn't that bad. Score: 21

Shannon Elizabeth and Derek Hough followed with a jive. I thought Shannon's performance last week was heaps better, but she showed a lot of improvement in her leg positions and the judges definitely noticed. With all those kicks and between-the-leg moves and twists, who wouldn't? The judges loved the dance, despite a few comments on precision and technique. Score: 24
 
Adam Carolla and a barely recognizable Julianne Hough (in a brunette bobbed wig) tangoed their way onto the dance floor, and the performance was a great surprise. Carrie Ann admitted that she actually thought Adam was "sexy" (it must be the "tango face"), and although the technique was "eh", Bruno says Adam is definitely getting better. Score: 21

The jive seems to be the perfect dance for peppy Marissa Janet Winokur and partner Tony Dovalani, but their performance was restrained and lackluster. The judges were not happy, and they brought out the harsh in their critiques. Len noticed one or two foot faults and told Marissa she was "too careful," Carrie Ann called the dance "boring" and Bruno thought the performance was "like a rehearsal." I guess Marissa would need to put more fight into the dance next time. Score: 19

Priscilla Presley who was a "slithering cougar" last week, danced the tango with partner Louis van Amstel this week. Priscilla was her usual elegant, graceful self and the judges liked it. Although I'm starting to think Priscilla needs to take up the energy a notch, then she'll be an even hotter "cougar." Score: 26

Jason Taylor and Edyta Sliwinska got their jive on this week. It was a decent jive but it wasn't in the same level as their great mambo from last week. The dance was a bit awkward, but the judges thought Jason did a great job on his footwork and is a natural on the dance floor. Score: 23

I'm expecting nothing less than all-nines for Kristi Yamaguchi and Mark Ballas since they've probably been the most consistent pair. The judges thought their tango this week had great technique and precision. One thing missing though? Intensity. The judges thought Kristi needed more expression and emotion on her face. Score: 27

So, who thought Len the judge really needed that fiber?

 

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