SAN ANTONIO -

Seven couples remain in the final two weeks of the competition. Somehow, it appears something went wrong at the beginning of the show. There was a shot of the audience applauding and then they went to commercial before anything happened. Technical difficulties so late in the game? They came back and Tom pointed out that was not how the show was supposed to start. This week, the couples perform two dances – including a trio dance. Up first, the couples perform their Veterans Day tributes. WARNING: There are so many couples and so many dances, I didn't have time to really get into them to make many notes. Apologies.

COUPLE: Shawn & Derek

DANCE: Viennese Waltz

This was lovely, but I didn’t feel like Shawn was showing me a whole lot of emotion. When I couldn’t see her face, I kept thinking she was flawless. She seemed so focused on the dance and not on the feeling.

Len said the dance was quiet, gentle and louder than any music you could hear. He wanted to see more dancing in hold. Bruno said it was heavenly perfection. Carrie Ann said something magical happened.

SCORE: 29.5

TRIO: Shawn, Derek & Mark
DANCE: Samba

This was like something out of “The Lion King.” Only naughtier. And with gymnastics. It was crazy entertaining, but not much samba.

Len said if he was in the audience, he’d be cheering with the audience. He said the problem was it was self-indulgent. The dance had very little samba content. He said if Shawn goes home tomorrow, she should blame Mark and Derek. Bruno said he had jungle fever. He said as art, it was fantastic. He said the dance wasn’t really a samba. Carrie Ann disagreed with them. She said sometimes you have to take risks. She said what they did of samba was executed to perfection.

SCORE: 26 (Carrie Ann gave them a 10)

TOTAL SCORE: 93.5 (this includes last week’s scores)

COUPLE: Apolo & Karina
DANCE: Tango

Apolo started by using a zipline from the balcony to the stage. My inner Len hates the gimmick like that! He didn’t need it. This was one of Apolo’s best dances – even if Karina was counting through the whole thing.

Bruno said it was a dare devil of a tango. He said it was like Tom Cruise in “Mission: Impossible.” Carrie Ann loved it. She said Apolo’s lines were ridiculous. Len said Apolo danced with verve and passion. He said it was great.

SCORE: 29.5

TRIO: Apolo, Karina & Sasha
DANCE: Jive

This started with some break dancing moves, then they got to jiving. But only briefly, there were some crazy flips. It was fun, but I wanted more jive!

Bruno said they took a huge risk, but Apolo conquered it brilliantly. He said Apolo did a fantastic job. Carrie Ann said it was Apolo’s most vibrant performances. Len said it was fast, sharp, tight and together.

SCORE: 29 (Bruno gave it a 10)
TOTAL SCORE: 91.5

COUPLE: Kirstie & Maks
DANCE: Viennese Waltz

Kirstie’s acting skills come in handy here. She showed emotion through the dance. This wasn’t complicated, but she did well.

Carrie Ann said the musical interpretation and Kirstie’s lines were beautiful. She said it was one of Kirstie’s best dances – she wants more difficult choreography. Len said it was Kirstie’s best dance. Bruno said it was stylish, elegant, nice and well-danced.

SCORE: 27

TRIO: Kirstie, Maks & Tristan
DANCE: Paso Doble

Three words: giant angel wings. Once they lost those, this went full-on paso doble. Kirstie did her best and it was good enough. It might have had the most content of the other trio dances (so far).