Photo Credit: Courtesy ABC
Even though the remaining contestants of Dancing with the Stars: All-Stars get a reprieve from sending someone home this week (because of the presidential election), the competitors still brought their A-game to the week of "fusion" dances. And even Shawn Johnson, who had to dance without her injured partner Derek Hough, impressed the judges.
Hough had to sit the week out due to an injury, but Johnson was in good hands with her original partner, Mark Ballas. Despite the change in partners, the Olympic gymnast earned a perfect 30 for her tango and paso doble.
Judge Bruno Tonioli called Johnson the "queen of the night" and said she "performed the maximum purity of each dance."
In fact, Hough may not even be able to return to the competition at all, so perhaps Johnson will continue to dance with Ballas.
"I have a bulging disc on my vertebrae," he explained to Us Weekly post-show. "I've had it for a couple years. I need surgery on it. It flares up and it did today unfortunately. It immobilizes me but we dance through it on adrenaline."
Apolo Anton Ohno and Karina Smirnoff wowed audiences not just with their 27-earning cha-cha and paso doble fusion but with the Olympic champion's chest, which he revealed for the very first time in competition by dramatically taking off his shirt at the end of the dance.
"There was nothing safe about this," Len Goodman said of their effort. "It's amazing to see you are still pushing yourself," Carrie Ann Inaba added. "It started off strong and it ended stronger."
Gilles Marini and Peta Murgatroyd rocked their tango and samba fusion with a 28.5, but Carrie Ann did have some constructive criticism for the sexy French actor: "I still see the little arm thingies that are going on," she said. "You've got to work on that a little more."
Cheryl Burke and Emmitt Smith were also impressive with another solid performance -- a samba and rumba combo -- which scored a 27.5. After one of their best weeks in the competition, Kirstie Alley and Maks Chmerkovskiy experienced some technical difficulties in their fusion dance, but the judges still awarded them a 24, which even Alley called "generous."
This week's most-improved couple were Kelly Monaco and Val Chmerkovskiy whose fox-trot and cha-cha combo scored a 27 and ended up in third place overall. Tonioli compared Monaco to Beyonce and called it a "sexylicious" dance.
Then came the swing dance marathon which came down to one winner: Melissa Rycroft and Tony Dovolani, who earned a perfect 10 to be added to their 29 in the fusion competition. The marathon landed them in the top spot of the night.
Watch Shawn and Mark's dance below:
Next week, two couples will have to go home since everyone was safe this week.
Here's how the leader board stacked up for the night:
Melissa Rycroft & Tony Dovolani: 39 (29, 10)
Shawn Johnson & Derek Hough: 38 (30, 8)
Kelly Monaco & Val Chmerkovskiy: 36 (27, 9)
Emmitt Smith & Cheryl Burke: 34.5 (27.5, 7)
Gilles Marini & Peta Murgatroyd: 33. 5 (28.5, 5)
Apolo Anton Ohno & Karina Smirnoff: 33 (27, 6)
Kirstie Alley & Maksim Chmerkovskiy: 28 (24, 4)