It's time to return to the ballroom for more celebrity dancing madness. This week the couples faced the challenge of learning and performing two dances, a Latin routine and the swing for the much-hyped group dance.
1) After some questions about Joey's somewhat feminine style last week, Kym brought in Jerry Springer to show him the "more masculine side" of the samba. This week they danced the samba to the Latin version of "A Little Respect". It wasn't my favorite Joey/Kym performance so far, but as with all of their performances it was solid and enjoyable. Len offered this comment to Joey, "you're like a big swashbuckling guy who really comes out and sells it"; Bruno was more straight to the point with "you went for it like a randy fighting cockerel". They pair received 9s from all three judges for a 27 out of 30 for this round.
2) Heather and Jonathan had to contend with a tough travel schedule as they flew to London and back, all while rehearsing the paso doble. They danced to "Don't Cry For Me Argentina" and I thought Heather looked very stunning in her costume, but I could have done without the bit of dramatic lip-syncing during the routine. Jonathan was very much in the part of the matador, but I felt like he sort of had to drag Heather around like a rag doll and not in that great intense paso doble kind of way. If you know what I mean. Still, the judges were impressed, although Len and Carrie both wanted to see more upper body poise from Heather. Bruno loved the routine and quipped to Heather, "You know a thing or two about drama." No one was quite sure how to react to that, but I felt a good round of laughter would have sufficed. The couple earned a total of 23 out of 30 for their paso doble and I wonder if they're going to end up in the bottom two again this week.
3) John and Edyta were up next with their mambo. There isn't much I can say about this really other than John always looks like he's having a great time and Edyta looked gorgeous as ususal. I should also mention that George Wendt (NORM!) was in the audience to cheer on his friend from Cheers. Carrie Ann called John a "dancing teddy bear" and while Len loved the joy in John's dancing, he said "the actual routine was awful." They ended up with only 19 points out of a possible 30 this week.
4) In rehearsals, Laila tells Max he's going to have to get funky for this week's cha cha cha. Coming out like a Solid Gold dancer and strutting to "Hold On" is definitely funky for a cha cha cha, I'd say. I think Laila's footwork is probably the cleanest of all the celebs and she was back in great form this week, adding her own bit of choreography to an already energized routine. The crowd obviously approved and Len thought it was "pure gold", except for the bit of additional funk at the end. Bruno called Laila a "magnificent obsession". The couple earned two 9s and a 10 for this great routine and put themselves at the top of the pack.
5) Billy Ray Cyrus offered a few of his own signature dance moves, namely the "Who's Your Daddy" and the "Bubba Chicken", made it into his jive routine this week. He and Karina put on a fun performance and I thought Billy Ray actually moved his feet a bit better than usual. Bruno brings out his best quote of the evening "the crazy bear has been let loose at a cheerleading convention tonight!" Len "whatever you lack in dance ability, you make up for in entertainment.” Although Billy Ray was hoping to get an 8 this week, he and Karina received 7s across the board for 21 out of 30 possible points for this week's effort.
6) Coming back from their perfect 10s last week, Apolo and Julianne tackle the rumba this week. Julianne was sick this week, so she brought in her brother to help Apolo out during rehearsal. Bruno called the routine a "choreographed poem", but Len felt the use of the theatrics and props was a bit much. Carrie Ann thought it was beautiful. Me personally, I thought it was sort of boring, but you can't argue the fact that these two are a great couple and have talent. They also earned a 28 out of 30 with two 9s and a perfect ten to tie with Laila and Max.
7) Ian and Cheryl were the last couple to perform their latin dance this week and it's apparent that the theme with Ian is going to be "stiffness". I find that he and Cheryl always have a great synergy, but that you can definitely tell that Ian is always trying to perfect the performance. Their paso doble was passable, but didn't seem to ignite the fire that you'd want to see. The judges were all over this one and Len was first out of the gate to say he was disappointed and that the Spanish posture just wasn’t there. Bruno advised Ian to "disengage the safety net" and Carrie Ann suggested he take a tip or two from Billy Ray and learn to let loose a little bit. While this was very amusing, even to Ian, I think they hit the nail on the head. Still, they earned 8s across the board for a 24 out of 30 this week.
Finally, we get to see the group swing routine with all the couples taking the dance floor to strut their stuff in a little friendly dancing hullabaloo. The routine was sort of a "military gents on leave" rocking out with sock hop honeys to "Rock This Town". It was a bit of a schizophrenic dance explosion, complete with “illegal” flips, lifts and holds. The best part by far was Laila lifting Apolo during the midst of the chaos. The performance wasn't judged and it was sort of fun to see the couples interacting and having a good time with their own individual personalities.
What did you think of this week's routines? Who will be next to leave the ballroom? Share your picks and pans here with other DWTS junkies.