DWTS All-Stars: The new dance challenge

Top 9 couples perform dances never seen on the show

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SAN ANTONIO - The top nine couples perform a brand new style of dance this week. And Paula Abdul is a guest judge. If she brings her “American Idol” style of judging, Bruno might be the tame one at the judge’s desk! On to the dancing!

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COUPLE: Kirstie & Maks

DANCE: Charleston

Judging by the footage from rehearsal, it looks like Maks may be trying to kill Kirstie. There was a lot of her falling on the ground. Maybe she’s just not going to be able to pull this off? And this starts with Kirstie popping up out of a cake. Mostly. If you watch Kirstie from the waist up, she’s not bad. Her footwork is not great. She did pull off the cartwheel (not sure I could have done that). Towards the end, she and Maks spent a lot of time on the floor doing something. I’m not sure if that was part of the routine. It was fun, but I’m worried Kirstie isn’t going to get the scores she wants.

Len said Kirstie turns Monday into fun days. He said he wanted it a little cleaner, but she’s the best at fun. Paula said Kirstie takes on the role each week of the characters. She said Kirstie’s a joy to watch. Bruno said he loves Kirstie for being a mad woman. Carrie Ann said Kirstie looks stunning. She said Kirstie played to her strengths and she entertained. She said the dance could have been a little tighter.

SCORE: 30

COUPLE: Bristol & Mark

DANCE: Rock & Roll

It appears Bristol & Mark are back on good terms after last week’s meltdown. Mark wanted to dress in a rabbit costume. Bristol (smartly) spoke up to say that’s not a great idea. Bristol was asking Mark to make the dance easier. He wants her to do more. Uh oh. There were a lot of kicks. Mark spun Bristol in the air for a few beats. She seemed to get lost or lose her energy around the halfway point. Knowing how good the other contestants are, this seemed like something you’d see at an under-10 dance competition.

Paula said Bristol has improved and is having fun. She told Bristol Mark is trying to push her boundaries. Bruno said Bristol was hitting all the steps. He said she stayed focus. Carrie Ann gave Bristol a high five and told her she did a good job. Um, did we watch the same dance? She said Bristol lost a little steam at the end. Len said Bristol gave it her all. He said it was a little safe on occasion.

SCORE: 32

COUPLE: Sabrina & Louis

DANCE: Disco

OMG! I totally dig a disco! They can be lift-tastic! I’m crossing my fingers while typing that Sabrina pulls this off! She has disco hair! But why is she dressed like Cookie Monster? Oh, never mind. That blue furry coat came off to reveal a gold sparkly dress. Holy flips and fast feet! WOW! The crowd – even the Palins – were dancing along with her! LOVED THIS! If there’s not at least one 9 from the judges, I will shout bad things at my TV!

Bruno said Sabrina is a disco diva! He said it was Sabrina’s most vibrant and alive performance, but she lost timing twice. That was news to the other judges. Carrie Ann said Bruno might have been off beat. She said Sabrina was vibrant and beautiful. She said Sabrina was not off key, but she had one bad dismount. Paula did not like Bruno yelling in her ear. Len was having a 70s flashback. He thought it was fabulous. Paula thought it was a great homage to Studio 54. She said Louis choreographed to Sabrina’s strengths. She said there were a few missteps.

SCORE: 35.5 (Paula gave it an 8.5 – everyone else a 9)

COUPLE: Emmitt & Cheryl

DANCE: Balero

This is a Cuban dance. Cheryl has never trained in it. She brought in four experts to teach them. Emmitt was really strong on the lifts. I didn’t know what to expect from this dance. It was a lot of slow moves with some hip action. I love Emmitt, but whichever couple picked this for him was not nice (Kelly & Val). Even though it was nice, I was kind of bored with this.

Carrie Ann said there is nothing better than watching a big, burly man get all dramatic and sexy. She said Emmitt was graceful and meant it when he gave Cheryl “that hip thing.” Len said Balero is slow, but he thought Emmitt coped well. Paula said it was exquisite and sensual. She said Emmitt is a “sexy beast.” Bruno said the mood was steamier than August in Louisiana. He stood up and gyrated explaining Emmitt “just got it, man.” What am I watching?

SCORE: 36

COUPLE: Gilles & Peta

DANCE: Bollywood

Oh, I love this style – when it’s done right! I adore Gilles, but I’m afraid to see him do this. These two have never seen this style before. It is fast and really hard. When they were actually doing Bollywood moves, these two weren’t bad. However, it dipped into ballroom-type dancing. I do appreciate shirtless Gilles. This wasn’t bad. It just wasn’t as good as Bollywood can be. Google, it people.

Len said he knew nothing about Bollywood, but he liked this. He said whatever dance is thrown at Gilles, he commits and goes for it 100%. Paula did what I think was an impression of Bruno. I don’t know what she said. Then, Bruno jumped up and said “A Bollywood star is born!” Carrie Ann said it was beyond belief. She said Aladdin has nothing on Gilles. Clearly I need some of what the judges are having.

SCORE: 39.5 (Len gave it a 9.5 – everyone else gave it a 10)

COUPLE: Melissa & Tony

DANCE: Jitterbug

Oh my lifts! After Melissa’s great dance last week, I’m expecting near perfection and crazy stunts without a mishap this week. I swear Melissa has springs in her shoes and no fear. She seemed to jump and flip over Tony like it’s no big deal. Tony almost dropped her on one trick, but he held on. And I’m exhausted. I wish this had been the last dance. I’m suddenly super tired!

Paula said these two fit together like hand to glove. She said the footwork was impeccable. She said the choreography was fantastic. She caught the little slip up. Bruno called Melissa a swinger. He said she was fearless and fierce. He said she didn’t miss a beat – except on one dismount. Carrie Ann said Melissa makes everything look effortless. She also said Tony’s choreography is exceptional. She caught the mishaps on the lifts. Len said Melissa is a class dancer. He said she’s clean and correct. He said it was more of a glitterbug. He also brought up the faux pas.

SCORE: 37

COUPLE: Shawn & Derek

DANCE: Mambo

These two have set the bar ridiculously high for lifts – no gymnastics pun intended! And crazy tricks start this one off! There is just as much dancing in hold as there is lifts. I don’t know what to say about this. One of the last tricks: Derek nearly flipped all the way over Shawn, she bent down to the floor and he picked her up. I mean, it doesn’t get better than that!

Bruno said Shawn was sexy, mesmerizing and out of this world. Carrie Ann said if she was the other contestants, she’d be scared of these two. She said they finish every line in absolute synchronization. Len said he liked it. He really liked it. He said the speed and all the athletic movement and still kept rhythm and timing. Paula touched Bruno while giving her critique. She said Shawn has turned into a sexy lady. She said Derek’s choreography and drum playing should get him on a ballot. She said it was her favorite dance.

SCORE: 39.5 (Len gave it a 9.5 – everyone else gave it a 10)

COUPLE: Apolo & Karina

DANCE: Hip Hop

This is not Karina’s favorite style of dance. She’s never studied or danced it. She was full of expletives in rehearsal. Hip hop attitude? Karina wasn’t her best – even in her booty shorts. Apolo wasgood. Karina fell. They struggled a little to recover. It looked like Apolo stumbled a little, too. He tossed his microphone. This was a little like a Fly Girl performance rehearsal. Karina cried when it was over. I wanted to cry, too. Poor Apolo. Karina was upset over her performance.

Carrie Ann asked Karina if she was OK. She said she wasn’t hurt. She begged the judges not to count her missteps against Apolo. Carrie Ann said everyone is outside their comfort zone tonight. She said the judges applaud them all for that. She said she loved Apolo’s modern edge to the 90s moves. Len said Apolo was smoking. He said he wasn’t even looking at Karina. Paula said everyone loves Karina. He said the style was natural to Apolo. Bruno said Apolo rocked it. He said Apolo even made the running man look good.

SCORE: 34.5

COUPLE: Kelly & Val

DANCE: Contemporary

Val was not happy with this dance choice. He’s never done it. He said Cheryl knew that when she told Emmitt to pick that style for these two. Kelly broke her toe Monday. Is something happening with these two? Fellas, if you didn’t see the show but you’re reading this, you should watch this online. Kelly’s wearing sparkly underwear. Ladies who missed the show, Val is shirtless. There was emotion in this dance, but these two were out of sync a few times. Perhaps their big, fat kiss at the end made up for that?

Len said of every couple in this season, these two are the biggest revelation to him. Paula said it was a beautiful routine. She said Kelly should be proud of herself. Bruno said Kelly’s dance was the hardest. He said Kelly did it beautifully. Carrie Ann said being in touch with raw emotion makes this a stunning dance. She said some moves were beyond Kelly’s ability, but it took courage.

SCORE: 37.5

Tuesday, there’s no recap special (so this recap will have to do). Donnie Osmond will perform with Susan Boyle. WHAT?!?!? Next week, there will be two nights of competition – no one will go home. The couples will dance to a guilty pleasure song and a team freestyle dance. Can’t wait!


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