Let's dance.... the last dance... yes, can you believe it? Our favorite dancing celebrity reality show is almost over! But not before some more super-fine dancing happens. Tonight the final three couples strutted their stuff in a judges' choice round and a freestyle dance. Let me just say up front that I didn't think tonight's dancing was as great as some of the routines in the past weeks. That said, the couples were out to please and giving it their all in their final performances. Before we jump into the recap, cast your vote in our final DWTS poll -- who do you want to see take home the trophy?
Each couple had one great dance and one that was so-so, in my book. Here's how they stacked up:
1) Laila and Maksim were up first with their intense and sexy paso doble. Nothing to complain about here, the moves matched the mood of the dance and Maksim seemed to really go all out during this routine. Len thought it was fantastic and Bruno declared it a "tidal wave of passion". Of the two dances, this was definitely their strongest and earned them a 29 out of 30 from the judges. For their freestyle, the pair grooved to a Michael Jackson-inspired routine. It was great to see Laila having some fun and showing her strength ... and legs in her silver fringed hot pants. But -- there was something a bit clunky about the performance. The judges agreed that while the routine was ok, they would have preferred to see some more elegance in Laila's last dance. This lack cost them a few points and their freestyle received a 26 out of 30 possible points.
2) Apolo and Julianne were in the second spot as they took the floor to add some sizzle to the rumba. As always, their dancing was strong, but again, something was just off in this performance. Carrie Ann and Bruno were mostly positive but Len didn't like it at all -- sparking a minor fight behind the judges' table. Apolo and Julianne came back out in the freestyle round to "Bust a Move" and they wowed the crowd with high energy hip-hop moves and cute choreography that kept up the pace throughout the routine. This time, even Len was pleased and Bruno shouted "Apolo syndrome has taken hold of the country!" Of course it sounds so much funnier with his accent than just typed out here on the page, but what are you going to do? Their second effort earned them a perfect score, ending their performance on a high note.
3) Last in the rotation were Joey and Kym who seemed to add some *NSYNC marionette-style moves to their cha cha cha to "Groove is in the Heart". Personally, I'm all for any routine that resurrects this great hit from Deeelite, but again, there was something that just didn't gain momentum here. (And also, Joey -- the tight ruffled shirt was probably not the best choice.) Carrie Ann loved the performance but felt there wasn't enough actual cha cha, while Len said it was "far too theatrical". Bruno simply called it "strangely odd". They received a 26 out of 30, leaving them a bit disappointed after their first dance. All that changed after they came out for the freestyle round, in full ballroom regalia as "Last Dance" started playing. The routine started out sensual and romantic ... but quickly broke into a gold-infused disco romp as the music ramped up. The crowd loved it and so did Bruno, who likened it to "a hit parade of dance". I'm not even sure that makes any sense, but that never seems to stop him. Len was even wowed with the razzle dazzle and said that Joey took off from the stage like "Harry Potter on a Nimbus 2000" and confessed that he "wished we had more than 10 to give". Well then! You probably saw this coming but Joey and Kym rounded out the evening with another perfect score for their final dance.
So ... who do you think is going to take home the status of ultimate ballroom champion this season? Which dances were your favorites and which needed a bit of work. Post your final predictions and dish the dancing dirt here!