A 10 at the start of the night. A boot out the door at the end. Ouch. This one is last week’s fault. Unless ... it was going to happen anyway?
Last Monday, Dancing With the Stars Season 17 guest judge Julianne Hough called out Christina Milian and Mark Ballas, saying she wanted to see Christina shine instead of Mark. Judge Carrie Ann Inaba also called Christina “forgettable” in her post-show blog.
It’s ironic this week, since Christina and Mark just earned the first 10s of the season and tied for the highest score on Week 5’s Most Memorable Year Night. But Tom Bergeron even warned us at the start of the show that one female celeb would be going home if she didn’t get a high enough score. (Not a very nice new addition to the show.) Christina got a 10 and still went home. It was a slap. And it shows the major flaw in this new system — you’re punished this week for last week’s issues.
Apparently voters agreed with Julianne and Carrie Ann and any other “ann” who called out Christina for not standing out in this sea of good dancers. Or maybe viewers just agreed about the showboating claims against Mark, and skipped the couple when it came time to vote. It’s a shame, especially since Christina not only had a great dance to launch tonight's show, she shared a very personal story of being embarrassed and hurt by her cheating spouse and performed the routine to “Forget You.” It seems like that’s exactly what viewers did last week. We'll never forget you, Christina and Mark!
Here’s a quick rundown of where the couples stood after Week 5:
Christina & Mark: 28
Corbin & Karina: 28
Brant & Peta: 27
Jack & Cheryl: 27
Snooki & Sasha: 27
Elizabeth & Val: 26
Amber & Derek: 26
Bill E. & Emma: 24
Leah & Tony: 22
Read on for a full recap of the Week 5 action:
LIVE SONG INTRO: So now that they have some time, with more couples gone, they can add in more elements of the former Results Show (RIP!). The show opens with Aloe Blacc singing Avicii’s “Wake Me Up” as the pros dance with bright blue chairs. Nice. He’ll be performing throughout the night.
PRESSURE IS ON: This is kind of … rude? Before the show even started, Tom Bergeron said, based only on the viewer votes, one of the female celebs would be going home. But the judges could change things with their scores. Could that affect judging? Could it affect performances?
1. Christina Milian and Mark Ballas — Cha-Cha-Cha — Mark and Christina disagreed with Julianne Hough’s guest judging comments from last week; Christina felt like it was a diss on her, saying she didn’t shine. She picked 2010 as her big year. She gave birth to her daughter, who is the love of her life, but that same year she ended up getting a divorce from her unfaithful spouse. It was an up and down year. It was hurtful and embarrassing to hear the news along with the rest of the world. They picked Cee Lo Green’s “Forget You” as an anthem for any women who went through something like that. Christina starts with her own solo moment, in case anyone thought she just hid behind Mark. Now they are going to feel like she has to dance by herself all the time. You can’t stop Mark’s shine, though, and you never should. She shakes it out there, though. Carrie Ann Inaba called Christina “forgettable” in her blog, so maybe she’ll reference that a bit.
JUDGES: Len Goodman is back! Len’s glad to be back ‘cause he had the opportunity to see that fantastic Cha-Cha-Cha. She’s fire and ice — fire in the performance, ice cool in the attitude. Great technique. Mark, Christina, fantastic. Take that, Julianne? Bruno Tonioli said Christina painted the perfect picture of a hot Latina. Sharp, indecently hot. “I’m all flustered.” Carrie Ann said Christina has been great, she’s loved watching her performances, but she turned it up this week. Carrie Ann said something was different this night. She called out their good partnership. They seem to be reacting to last week.
SCORES: 9, 10, 9 = 28 out of 30. First 10 of the season! Well, Len is getting invited to the Mark and Christina Christmas party, even if Julianne is out. Do you think these scores saved Christina? Could she have been the female celeb in danger?
Vote for Christina & Mark: Vote for 1-800-868-3401
2. Jack Osbourne and Cheryl Burke — Waltz — Last year was his most memorable year. It started out good. He moved into a new house and his daughter was born in April. Barely 2.5 weeks after Pearl was born, he was diagnosed with MS. He said he wasn’t so much scared for himself than his child, thinking he couldn’t take care of and provide for her. (Not to be cynical, but his rich and famous family would probably jump in to help provide.) He says something wise, though: “If you don’t have bad, you can’t appreciate good.” He’s dedicating this dance to his wife, Lisa. He really works on his hands out there, you can tell he’s paying attention to technique. Sweet dance, but he and Cheryl don’t seem too connected.
JUDGES: Bruno said they’re all lost in admiration for his strength and courage. His footwork was so light and musical, he had his best lines. He worked on his bum too. Carrie Ann said there’s something so magical about Jack. The grace of his being manages to slip into the grace of his dancing. There was an exceptional level of quality tonight. There wasn’t one moment where he didn’t look sure of what he was doing. Len said people think the Waltz is a small itsy bitsy dance, but it’s not. It has big flowing movements. He appreciated how much they did in hold. His hands do peculiar things sometimes, but “fabulous Waltz.”
SCORES: 9, 9, 9 = 27 out of 30. Their highest score so far too. The judges took their happy pills this week!
Vote for Jack & Cheryl: 1-800-868-3402
3. Leah Remini and Tony Dovolani — Contemporary — Leah’s most important year has been this past year. This is her celebration of independence. It’s hard when you’re raised in something and dependent on something and you don’t realize it until it’s gone. With challenges in life you can be a victim or do something about it. Leah said her daughter has been able to see the strength in the family. It’s always scary to make a major change in your life, she said, but you have to do it. She’s dancing to Katy Perry’s “Roar,” which is her theme song for anyone going through change like this. She never says the words Scientology, but it’s clear she’s talking about her split with that church. She’s doing a dance about a puppeteer (David Miscavige?) pulling the strings until the puppet takes control.
JUDGES: Carrie Ann said she loved the concept and message. There was some draperie in the way? The beginning started beautifully, then it felt like lift to movement to lift and it didn’t feel like one smooth storytelling movement. It was a little rough to the do the lift transitions. Len said he loved the concept too, the way she broke free. He loved all the action between the two of them, but the lifts were a little bit labored. It was good but not great. Bruno said she got herself out there, Leah fights back. She took it on and it’s very hard. Contemporary has a particular technique and has a strong dynamic flow, but it’s a lot to take on for the first time. She carries herself around in a very luscious way but there’s nothing wrong with that. Her storytelling was effective. Leah and Tony keep reinforcing that she’s not a natural dancer, so Tony’s proud of how much she could do.
SCORES: 7, 7, 8 = 22 out of 30. Tom asked what Leah was thinking. She said you don’t want to know, it’s not suited for this audience. She said she’s just proud she got through it. Why did Brooke interview Paris Hilton. DO NOT INVITE HER FOR NEXT SEASON. No! Nice to see Tristan MacManus already back for a little mid-routine dance.
Vote for Leah & Tony: 1-800-868-3411
4. Corbin Bleu and Karina Smirnoff — Foxtrot — Corbin is dedicating this dance to his sister Phoenix. 2011 was his most memorable year. That was the year she was diagnosed with scoliosis. She had a 38 percent double curve, so she was wearing a brace 24/7. Phoenix never lets it affect her and she’s an inspiration to her. They’re dancing to “My Wish” by Rascal Flatts. Karina looks beautiful with her princess hair and pink dress.
JUDGES: Len said Corbin is a terrific dancer. What he loves about him, whatever dance he gets, he somehow gets the character straight away. He had lovely fluid movement. He was great in hold. His footwork was good. The last lift was maybe slightly out of character but the actual dance he appreciated. Bruno said he could be the love child of Fred Astaire and …
Ben Bernie? Ben Vereen. Carrie Ann tries to play lift police on the beginning, but Karina said her foot was on the ground. Tom asks if they could do a slow-motion recap later, which might affect the score.
SCORES: 9, 9, 10 = 28 out of 30. It would’ve been a 10 from Carrie Ann, but she docked a lift police point. Tom’s going to check on the lift! Update: The judges score based on what they see and that stands. Oh well.
Vote for Corbin & Karina: 1-800-868-3406
5. Bill Engvall and Emma Slater — Viennese Waltz — Bill’s wife said he now takes a lot of naps since he’s so tired from dancing (and probably his comedy tour). Bill and Emma have won people over with determination and heart. His most memorable year is 1982. That’s when he married his wife, Gail. He worked hard to woo her. She wouldn’t spend the night in his apartment. She had high moral standards. Good for her! He finally won her over and they’ve been married for 30 years. Swoon city! They’re dancing to Billy Joel’s “She’s Always a Woman.” His whole career has been about him, and she rarely gets the credit or accolades even though she deserves them. That’s the story of many a woman. Or the story of anyone married to a celeb, really. He’s probably the best of the comedians they’ve had on this show, in terms of dancing, performance and storytelling. He keeps getting better and he connects well with Emma. Charming pair. Love the lights too, they’re always a good idea. Lights > smoke machine.
JUDGES: Bruno said it was honest, heartfelt and emotional. He wears his heart on his sleeve and it’s good to see. A couple of timing issues, though, and he had arm issues. Carrie Ann said dancing is about touching people’s souls, and he did that. He was a little off timing, but still. Len said it was a little skippy and rushed on occasion but he liked the romance of the dance and liked him in hold.
SCORES: 8, 8, 8 = 24 out of 30. Aww. No 9s at all?
Vote for Bill E. & Emma: 1-800-868-3409
6. Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi and Sasha Farber — Jazz — Snooki’s most memorable year is 2012, when she gave birth to her son. It changed her life. She admits she was “terrible” before - she was loud and annoying and drank all the time. Just “young and dumb.” The whole world told her she’d be a terrible mother when she got pregnant. Part of her wondered if it was true. But all her priorities shifted to be the best mom to her son. Now she loves doing laundry? She’s all domestic now. And she knows the difference between 180 and 360. She was right, Sasha! She picked Britney Spear’s “Work B--ch” since she’s a full-time mom and works seven days a week to provide for him. (What does she do for work, besides this? Just asking.) Her outfit this week is awesome. Love her hair. Serious spins out there. Lots of jumping around and sharp in sync movements. These two know how to put on a show. Is this Jazz, though? It’s hard to tell.
JUDGES: Carrie Ann said it reminded her of her favorite quote from her favorite drag queen. You better work! Snooki comes out and surprises Carrie Ann every week. She hits her beats, she nailed it. Great choreography. Len said the lifts were clean, it had energy and attack and it was fun to watch. Bruno said she works hard for her money. Exhilarating bundle of fun. Loved it.
SCORES: 9, 9, 9 = 27 out of 30.
Vote for “Snicole” & Sasha: 1-800-868-3412
PROS WEIGH IN ON PREVIOUS DANCE EXPERIENCE: Filler alert! This season has a mix of dancers with previous training and those who've never danced before. Mark said it’s virtually impossible to find someone, especially women, who haven’t had any past dance training, since a lot of girls take ballet or tap as kids. Peta said it’s definitely an advantage to have prior training. Karina said it can sometimes put you at a disadvantage. She has Corbin, so. Tony said it’s much more of a battle when someone doesn’t have prior training and it could lead you to leave early. He has Leah, so. They all seem to be making cases for themselves and their own partners based on this season. Peta says people vote for the underdog. Cheryl said most of the time the “best” dancer does not win, it’s part personality and just whoever people root for.
7. Brant Daugherty and Peta Murgatroyd — Contemporary — 2009 was his big year. He had moved to Hollywood to be an actor. His dad flew out with him and helped him find an apartment. In February of 2009, his mom called and told him to come home to say goodbye to his dad. His dad had lymphoma and he was already in a medically induced coma. Brant sat by his dad’s side for two weeks. One night he passed away. Brant threw himself into his acting work. They’re dancing to Elton John’s “Your Song” because it’s a celebration of how much a person has impacted your life and no one has impacted his life more than his dad. The dance has a great theme and it’s definitely impassioned.
JUDGES: Len thought it was terrific. He loved the passion, the interaction and chemistry. He always thinks his own dad is looking down on him too. Bruno said Brant throws himself into it with such dedication and passion. Brant acted it wonderfully. Carrie Ann said the passion … with Contemporary, if passion doesn’t instigate the movement it doesn’t work.
SCORES: 9, 9, 9 = 27 out of 30.
Vote for Brant & Peta: 1-800-868-3403
8. Amber Riley and Derek Hough — Foxtrot — Her most memorable year is 2009. She worked at IKEA, but her passion since she was a kid was singing. She auditioned for American Idol but got turned down. She was inconsolable. She cried all the way back to L.A. She ended up auditioning for and booking her role on Glee. Funny, ‘cause Idol tapes right down the hall from DWTS. So she ended up in the same spot anyway. She ends the dance right at the mic, to celebrate the singing.
JUDGES: Bruno said one thing is for sure - lady Amber is here to stay. Absolutely and utterly sensational. She is a performing powerhouse. This could be lifted from the best of Broadway shows. “My darling, you’re a star.” Carrie Ann gave a shout out to the singer. Amber has blown her away with her flexibility, the way she acts it out. She had one little slip, but otherwise it was basically perfect. Len said she is a star, she lights the place up. This is a Foxtrot, though. He has to see a certain amount in the hold of ballroom. He thinks back to Jack, Corbin and Bill, who worked their butts off to get the hold and posture. As great as she was, there wasn’t enough in hold. Derek jumped in and said he preppred Amber for that. Fair enough.
SCORES: 9, 7, 10 = 26 out of 30. All over the map. Bruno doesn’t care about technique as long as he likes it. He’s the “entertainment value” judge.
Vote for Amber & Derek: 1-800-868-3407
9. Elizabeth Berkley and Valentin Chmerkovskiy — Jive — Her most memorable year is 2012, when her baby boy, Sky, was born. She’s connecting that to her most memorable year professionally. In 1989 she moved out to Hollywood and her first big break was Saved By the Bell. Mario Lopez in the house! Her dance is an homage to Saved By the Bell, with a Jive to “I’m So Excited,” which is based on her character’s big caffeine pill freakout on the ‘90s show. They have a whole sitcom scene. She needs Jive pills to Jive. Legwarmers! Edyta should be jealous. Val looks gooood shirtless in a letterman jacket. Cute theme and she really goes for it, but how is this as a Jive?
JUDGES: Carrie Ann said she loved Elizabeth for doing that. She will say, though, the kicks were a little soft for her and Elizabeth fell out of her pirouette in the end. Len thought the kicks were sharp and clean. He feels better on that side of the room! Tall people have trouble with the Jive, but not her. Clean and tight. Bruno said she didn’t need any pills. She did convey the excitement. Incredible fun.
SCORES: 8, 9, 9 = 26 out of 30. Len is the nice judge this week.
Vote for Elizabeth & Val: 1-800-868-3405
WHO GOES HOME FOURTH?
In jeopardy: Tom immediately tells Elizabeth and Val they are in jeopardy. Val’s response: “Thanks, Carrie Ann.” He was so excited. Christina and Mark, and Leah and Tony join them.
Who is safe: Corbin and Karina, Amber and Derek, Bill and Emma, Jack and Cheryl, Brant and Peta, and Snooki and Sasha.
Not necessarily the bottom two: Christina and Mark, and Leah and Tony. Top and bottom of this week’s leaderboard, but that doesn’t matter when it comes to last week’s votes.
Who is going home on Week 5? Christina and Mark. Slap. Well, guess people agreed with Julianne last week. HARSH. Go ahead and boo audience, but did you vote for them?
How surprised are she and Mark. “It’s true shock,” Christina said, but they had the best performance so far so they’re going out on a high note. They went out with a bang. Wow. So a 10 still couldn’t save them.