DWTS All-Stars: Freestyle night

Top three couples also bring back a previous dance

Melissa Rycroft & Tony Dovolani perform a samba on week three of "Dancing With The Stars: All-Stars."
Melissa Rycroft & Tony Dovolani perform a samba on week three of "Dancing With The Stars: All-Stars."

SAN ANTONIO – It's nearly the last dance for these All-Stars! It's the first time the finale has consisted of women stars. After nine weeks of competition, we'll see them perform a dance we've seen before and their no rules freestyle. Let's get right to it!

COUPLE: Kelly & Val
DANCE: Paso Doble

They chose to bring back this dance from week three because Val thought it was a huge turning point for them. They haven't received a perfect score all season. Is this their time? I'm going to count their kisses. They had one within the first 30 seconds. Then, I spied a second kiss a short time after that. Kelly is practically perfect here. Oh – Val didn't catch her hand! Kelly kept going and they got back on track. I'm now worried about her dress! WHEW! She made it without a dress mishap!

Len said it was Kelly's best dance to date. Bruno said Kelly burned the floor like "an awesome fire angel, fueled by passion, driven by desire." He said her lines were better and she even covered the mishap with her hand. He said it was a thing of beauty. Carrie Ann said Kelly has struggled the hardest to get to the finals. She saw the slip up, but said she was proud of Kelly because it was her best dance.

SCORE: 29.5 (Carrie Ann gave them a 9.5)


Oh. My. Kelly is doing some aerial silk work – she's suspended from the ceiling by a couple of pieces of fabric and spinning. Val is playing a violin. And as soon as I heard the first line of the music "I've had the time of my life," I'm out. I don't want to see this dance recreated on any more TV shows! There was a lot of Val picking up Kelly and twirling her in the air. OOH! A choir! I think they had fun. It looked a little like the last lift was off a bit. Val's arm shook a little at the end, but he didn't drop Kelly. I'm a sad face.

Len loved the lifts and the salsa, but thought it lack originality. Bruno loved the blend of Cirque du Soleil with "Dirty Dancing." He said they were two people totally in tune. He said Patrick (Swayze) was smiling down on them. Carrie Ann said they've watched these two grow as a couple and they told a beautiful ending to a happy love story. These two STILL won't say if they're a couple. Teases.

SCORE: 29.5 (Len gave it a 9.5)

COUPLE: Melissa & Tony
DANCE: Samba

These two are the only finalists who have not won a trophy. How is that possible? They chose this dance from week three. They earned a 27 the first time. This dance started with those crazy core tests Melissa pulled off the first time. Wow! She is STRONG! I wouldn't even try getting off the sofa like that! I know these two want the trophy, but they aren't just dancing like they want to win. They're dancing like this is the most fun you could have on TV. And it is fun to watch! Seriously!?!? Just amazing dancing from these two!

Bruno said Melissa is a deliciously, irresistible Brazilian bombshell. He said her confidence has grown so much and it was fantastic to see. Carrie Ann said Melissa's abs are ridiculous. She said Melissa was fabulous and brilliant. Len said it had the party flavor of the samba, had great technique and great rhythm.



Tony decided to take their freestyle a different (and riskier) route – a contemporary routine. They started with Tony on the floor holding Melissa above him. These two are crazy strong! And these lifts – I wouldn't dare do them in a swimming pool! Melissa looks fearless and graceful! At times, she appeared to be a ballerina dancing in a music box. I'm not sure it gets better than this! Just – WOW!

Bruno said it was the perfect setting to showcase Melissa's extraordinary quality. He said it was a gem. Carrie Ann said Melissa took humongous risks. She said it was the freestyle jackpot. Len quoted Leonard Bernstein – "When the passion is too much to talk, sing. When the passion is too much to sing, dance." He said it was wonderful. He was a little speechless.

SCORE: 30 (Len wished he had an 11)

COUPLE: Shawn & Derek
DANCE: Quick Step

They chose this dance from week three. They're choosing not to change the routine – they'll break the rules till the end! My inner Len says the parts in hold are still absolutely fantastic. I would have liked to see what they could have done if they'd stayed in hold and took out some of the tricks (because that's what the freestyle is for). This dance is still fun to watch. But I think the judges will still punish them for the rule breaking.

Carrie Ann said it's a fan favorite and a fantastic routine, but she's sad they didn't follow the rules. She hoped the risk pays off for them. Len said there was more body contact when they were in hold. He said he had nowhere to go because they left hold and did tricks. Bruno said what they have achieved is sensational, but their scores are bound by the rules.



Shawn brought in a little help from her friends – the Fierce Five. She didn't get to perform with them in London, so they'll take the ballroom floor and do a little bit of what Shawn does. This started off by showing their strength – Derek held Shawn using basically his abs. I'm sore just watching that. The ladies didn't take too much away from Shawn. She was the star on this floor. This was a true and total freestyle – not taken from a movie - and incorporating the skills Shawn knows she can crush – on a dance floor or a gym floor. Derek also held his own doing flips with Shawn this season. This was really fun!

Carrie Ann said Shawn is incredible. She said it was "supersized and sensational." She said Shawn did not disappoint. Len said the dance was unexpected. He said it was a medley of Derek and Shawn's greatest hits. He called it a "gold medal performance." Bruno said it was brilliant (and a few other adjectives).


Tuesday, it's the instant dance. The couples will perform either a jive, cha cha or a samba. They'll have to prepare three different routines and will learn their music and dance style before they perform it live. That scares me and I don't even have to dance it! The former All-Stars will perform, too.

NOTE: I'm not going to recap the final finale. In fact, this is my last recap ever. For years, I have hoped for a season with the top couples competing against each other and this year ABC delivered. It's been fun! I hope those of you who have read these recaps have enjoyed them. Happy dancing, y'all!