Week three begins theme weeks leading up to the 200th show. Tom welcomes us to Story Night where we’ll go from romance to action to the bizarre. Brooke pipes in with a thank you for once again making DWTS the #1 show in America.
To give us an idea of what a story dance looks like, the Pros take to the floor. Their demonstration dance tells the story of three poor men meeting three rich women in a supper club; wooing them with a waltz, marrying them with a Foxtrot and enjoying married life with a Samba.
Tom comes back to tell us that this week, unlike the doghouse of last week, props are encouraged; and with that disclosure, the *Stars* and their Pro partners make the sometimes tricky walk down the stairs during the introductions. Their costumes range from homeless winter attire to Sound of Music knock-offs to a huge yellow feathered headpiece and make one wonder what
on earth they were thinkingstory they are going to tell. So, let’s find out.
Jennifer Grey and Derek Hough (Jenougher) dance the Samba to A Little Respect (Erasure)
Story: A teenager has a crush on his teacher.
Setting/Props: There is a desk for Derek and a blackboard for Jennifer on the upper stage.
Derek: This week I’m pushing Jennifer once again and with the most difficult steps in the Samba role.
Jennifer thinks it could be great but she is nervous as the higher the score the farther to fall.
Wearing a suit and glasses, Jennifer plays the “strict” teacher with a slapping ruler to start the dance and a beat-ending ruler slap to end the dance.
Carrie Ann: Slightly out of sync.
Len: I enjoy Story Night, but what I love is when you can continue it through the dance. I thought that you had very clever choreography.
Bruno: You are the sexy misfit! But there was a miss-step in the middle. (He then gets very technical on the moves missed.)
Derek and Jennifer go into hold and proceed to demonstrate with a re-dance of the mistake to show they could do it correctly.
Scores: CA 8 Len 8 Bruno 8 for a total of 24
Florence Henderson and Corky Ballas (Florky) dance the Waltz to Edelweiss
Story: They will play the characters from the Sound of Music (The Captain and Maria) showing Maria’s resistance to the attraction and her overcoming it.
Setting/Props: There is setting only, no props, with lights and an Alpine background as well as simulated earth and grass on the upper stage.
Florence is familiar with the musical because she played the part of Maria on stage for 15 months early in her career. The romance of the waltz also brings back sweet memories of her late husband and their 20 year marriage.
Personal disclosure: I always tear up at the first note of Edelweiss and watched their waltz through misty eyes. My eyes were not too misty, though, to miss the full-on kiss Corky planted on Florence to end their dance. I mean a real smack-a-roo of a kiss.
Carrie Ann: When people dance from the heart…I’m worried that it was on the simple side. I’m worried about you making it to next week.
Len: It was emotional. It was poignant. It was sweet. I thought the story was beautiful. The technique in your feet was non-existent, unfortunately, and I have to look. Get your technique, but well done.
Bruno: Simple, effective, very sweet. Continue the progression in the waltz.
CA 7 Len 6 Bruno 7 for a total of 20
Kurt Warner and Anna Trebunskaya (Kurtana) dance the Foxtrot to Bad Day (Daniel Powter)
Story: A depressed Russian (Anna) sits on a bench on a London street with the rain pouring down. A suave man dances into her life, shares his umbrella and cheers her up.
Setting/Props: a bench, a UK red phone box, an umbrella and…wow…that sure looks like real rain.
Kurt says he feels like a big tree running around the floor.
Anna: You need to be delicate for the Foxtrot…not so rough. It’s like holding a delicate teacup.
A play date is arranged with Kurt’s daughters where they invite him to a princess tea party and instruct him on how to hold his tiny cup.
Carrie Ann: So charming. You worked wonders with the story and the Foxtrot. I loved it.
Len: You are lacking musicality in your arms, but everything else was penthouse – well done.
Bruno: The brief encounter in London Town worked. Your personality is great. You went back to flailing arms and almost dropped her. You have to be cleaner.
Scores: CA 8 Len 8 Bruno 7 for a total of 23
Margaret Cho and Louis Van Amstel (Van Cho) dance the Samba to Copacabana
Story: A celebration and expression of Pride, Happiness and Joy.
Setting/Props: Lights were used as mood and streamers fell from the rafters at the conclusion. The costumes became their props with Margaret’s tall feather headpiece and tiered rainbow colored short Samba dress along with Louis’ rainbow belt worn on a shiny gray jumpsuit.
After comments about her facial expressions the previous two weeks, Margaret is having difficulty understanding how to correct what she doesn’t know how to control. She has had a busy week with touring, and Louis followed her to two cities in Canada so they could squeeze in rehearsals.
Tom: (regarding Louis’ costume) It is always great to see Jack Lalane’s outfit come back here.
Carrie Ann: I love the story. I love that you came out in full force. It was so out there that you sort of lost control. You unleashed the beast.
Len: I was so encouraged at the start. You had good hip action, but as the dance progressed, you lost your timing and it got a little heavy in the leg. You do have to work on your arms.
Bruno: I praise you for wearing the rainbow flag, but you lost your timing. The foot work…you lost your way so many times.
Scores: CA 6 Len 6 Bruno 6 for a total of 18
Audrina Patridge and Tony Dovalani (TorinA) Dance the Waltz to Let It Be Me (Ray Lamontagne)
Story: A fallen Marine returns in memory for one last dance with his love.
Setting/Props: On the lower level dance floor, a boudoir set with dressing table and chair. On top of the dressing table rest a photo and a Marine’s hat. Smoke is used to create atmosphere.
Tony: It is really important for Audrina to display her emotions for this dance.
Personal disclosure: My second bit of tearing up for the night. The set-up and the story reminded me of the movie “Ghost Story” where love is expressed for one last time.
Tom: That was Audrina, Tony and the Smoke Monster from “Lost”.
Carrie Ann: Beautifully acted, beautifully danced. I do think you need to point your toes a little bit more. The competition just got very interesting.
Len: It reminded me of something an old dance teacher said to me: You walk with your feet and dance with your heart. That was the most touching dance of the night.
Bruno: Every move connected to the story; beautifully played – a hit.
Scores: CA 8 Len 9 Bruno 9 for a total of 26
In the Celebriquarium, Audrina said that they wanted to dedicate their dance to all our troops, and families of those lost in war.
A video clip of Tony screaming (almost) in pain while getting his legs waxed (the bet he lost last week) was also included in the chat with Brooke.
Bristol Palin and Mark Ballas (Ballin) dance the Foxtrot to Just The Way You Are (Bruno Mars)
Story: A homeless man sits in a cardboard box begging to dance for food and catches the attention of a woman walking by. At first she ignores him, but there is something that intrigues her…she stops…she turns toward him and compassion takes over.
Setting/Props: A large cardboard carton, a sign reading “Will Dance for Food.”
Bristol is scared of the acting part. She doesn’t want to just stand there and stare at him until he moves toward her. She’s also afraid she can’t stop giggling when she needs to be serious.
Carrie Ann: That was a hard one. You are a newbie so far as performance and that hurt you. Your movement quality was really beautiful.
Len: Last week I told you to take a chance and this week you did and I didn’t like it that much so…it was a little bit too contemporary for my taste.
Bruno: (Bruno scares Len when he rises from his chair with a sweeping head move that gets just a tad too close to Len’s head. Len cringes and clings to Carrie Ann during Bruno’s remarks.) Your execution was neat, but you’re not Meryl Streep yet.
Scores: CA 6 Len 6 Bruno 7 for a total of 19
Brandy and Maks Chmerkovskiy (BranDMC) dance the Samba to Put It In A Love Song (Alicia Keys)
Story: The theme is from the movie “The Bodyguard” where a Diva takes on more than she can handle with a tough guy and finds love with him.
Setting/Props: a microphone on a stand on the upper stage along with song performance lighting.
The story plays into their real life power struggles in the rehearsal hall, though love is not the resolution. The Diva, Brandy, has been tamed and arrives at rehearsal with tape for her mouth as a gift of silence for her teacher, Maks.
Maks: Brandy needs someone tough.
Clips are shown of him “man-handling” her into positions.
Brandy: I know he’s trying to make me better and he really believes in this process, so it’s just about the strongest people getting through it.
Brandy begins their dance at the microphone doing a very good lip-sync to the song. (She had me fooled as I don’t know her true singing voice.) Then she joins Maks on the dance floor.
Tom: That’s what happens when you mix play acting with the Stockholm syndrome.
Carrie Ann: (Calls Maks to the judging table so she can attempt to swat his rear-end.) I don’t like your training methods. It worked, though, you were hot.
Len: It had energy, it had punch. I didn’t feel Maks was a protective bodyguard. I didn’t like your whole physical training and I disagree with your system.
Bruno: I’m starting to see the come back of the Diva. Keep fighting.
Scores: CA 8 Len 8 Bruno 8 for a total of 24
In the celebriquarium, Maks tells us that it’s not about the method; it’s about the end result.
Kyle Massey and Lacey Schwimmer (Schmurgles) dance the Waltz to Falling In Love In A Coffee Shop (Landon Pigg)
Story: A waitress and a customer find love in a coffee shop.
Setting/Props: a tri-fold flat denoting a coffee shop backs a table and chairs. A table setting and a coffee pot lend to the ambiance.
Kyle wants to show that he has a romantic side, but it comes off as silly. Lacey worries about whether he can pull off a waltz with a love story.
Tom: Such a smoothy.
Carrie Ann: You just bring the fun to the floor. I love the way your arms are so expressive.
Len: Your performance level is very high, but you have done nothing with your footwork. It is atrocious.
Bruno: The picture of a blossoming teenage romance. Your arms are much better, but you still need to work on the feet.
Scores: CA 8 Len 7 Bruno 8 for a total of 23
Mike (The Situation) Sorrentino and Karina Smirnoff (Sitchoff) dance the Foxtrot to Boom Boom Pow (Black Eyed Peas)
Story: A modern day scientist and her subject step into a time machine and travel to the future.
Setting/Props: A time machine mock-up is centered on the upper stage. During the presto-chango process, lights and smoke come from behind it and Mike and Karina reappear in their futuristic costumes.
Mike: I need to buckle down this week to avoid an elimination situation. I knew it was going to be hard, but not this hard.
Tom: Grab your flax-capacitor.
Carrie Ann: Boom Boom Wow! You are baby stepping your way to being a dancer.
Len: You are trying with the heel and the rise and fall, but if you were dancing in my backyard, I would pull the curtains. It was a bizarre performance.
Bruno: The Time Machine got The Situation in “The Land of the Lost” Foxtrot. In a very weird way, it was very entertaining.
Scores: CA 7 Len 6 Bruno 7 for a total of 20
Rick Fox and Cheryl Burke (Fox-C) dance the Samba to Whine Up (Kat deLuna)
Story: An athlete cost his teammates a game and goes to a bar to drown his sorrows. There, a sexy woman brings him out of his doldrums.
Setting/Props: A long drinking bar set up on the main dance floor, a barstool and a newspaper with a headline telling his story.
In rehearsal Rick questions some of the moves and steps. He asks if they are required for the Samba. Cheryl tells him that she is designing the dance for his height, to make him look good.
Personal disclosure: With Cheryl’s sexy prowl and Rick joining in the fun, the audience made so much noise clapping and yelling their approval that I had a hard time hearing Len’s remarks.
Carrie Ann: It was HOT! Sexy, right on the music.
Len: I’m so glad; much higher than I’ve seen the past weeks.
Bruno: You get plenty hot when you let it go. We want to see more of that.
(Bruno might have meant he wants to see more of an open-shirted Rick, who later tells us that ripping the shirt open was a very last minute decision after a pleading request from Cheryl.)
Scores: CA 8 Len 8 Bruno 8 for a total of 24
Judges' Score totals for the week three performances:
A tease of a teaser: I know some of you don’t like teasers as they make you pull out your hair, but this one is a doozy. I’m just saying you should watch Tuesday’s show or else read MFWalkoff’s recap and pretend to be amazed…such daring…such chutzpah…such… too much.