May 05, 2008 07:33 PM by Jennifer_Brown
Well, if anyone thought Cristian’s arm injury was going to spell the end of his ballroom dancing career, they were W-R-O-N-G! Tonight Cristian did anything but wilt into the floor, as the contestants each took on a ballroom routine and a Latin routine on this, the first night of “legal lifts.”
First up are Kristi & Mark who, after being bumped from the top spot by Jason & Edyta last week, are more determined than ever to focus. “Everyone’s a threat,” Kristi says. First the couple dances a clean Quickstep that “cheers up” Len, who’s been feeling “fed up all day.” But Carrie Ann, in the first of many critical comments tonight, says it was out of synch (yes, she gets boos from the audience).
For their second dance, Kristi & Mark perform a sassy Samba that leaves all three judges cold, although Bruno does stick up for the fact that Kristi did do eight spins into a drop. Carrie Ann’s comment: “I can’t believe I’m going to say this. I didn’t care for it.”
Kristi & Mark score a 29 for their Quickstep and a 26 for their Samba, leaving them with a combined score of 55 out of 60.
Next up are Mario & Karina, who’ll be tackling a Jive and a Viennese Waltz. The couple wants to try some ambitious lifts in their dances, so they take to the pool to practice (Wait…I’m having flashbacks of Dirty Dancing…Nobody puts Karina in a corner...). Mario is out to prove that he’s got the pizzazz and elegance for the ballroom. The judges would agree that he’s got elegance when it comes to his Viennese Waltz, although Len manages to bash both Mario and Britney Spears at once in his strange praise: “Usually you have the elegance of Britney Spears getting out of a car, but tonight…”
Mario & Karina’s Jive, however, got lackluster reviews from the judges. Danced to the song “Little Bitty Pretty One,” Len believes Mario’s Jive should’ve been called “Bloody Big Ugly Ones” because it was too rough. But Carrie Ann thinks the wildness worked for Mario, and Bruno called it the “spirit of rock ‘n roll.”
Mario & Karina received a 27 for their Waltz and a 26 for their Jive, giving them an overall combined score of 53 out of 60.
Marissa & Tony hit the stage next. Marissa’s a little rattled by ending up in the bottom two after viewer votes last week, but is all the more determined to keep working hard. Still, having beat cancer, Marissa says it’s going to take a whole lot more than the red light to stress her out. First they dance a Foxtrot to the song New York, New York. The song is great and Marissa’s smile is big, but Bruno thinks the dance was “not appropriate for a dance in the quarterfinals.”
When Marissa & Tony hit the stage again, it’s with a sexy Mambo. But the dance seems slow and lacks energy, or, as Len puts it, the whole dance was just a little careful.
Marissa & Tony receive a 25 for their Foxtrot and a 25 for their Mambo, bringing their score to 50 out of 50. They’re going to need lots of viewer votes if they want to stay in the game.
Jason & Edyta are next up, hoping to keep their lead from last week, and planning to “pull out all the stops” in order to do it. In order to get Jason into the Samba Mode, Edyta dons him in a frilly shirt and curly wig with maracas… and a spray tan. They come out with a Tango, which Len criticizes for being “too much like an Argentine Tango,” which gets Bruno in a snit. He tells the couple, “I hate you because you are so beautiful.”
The second dance on Jason & Edyta’s plate is the Samba, and with Jason & Kristi currently tied in the top spot, both with Sambas to dance for their second routines, it looks like a Samba Smackdown is in order. After Kristi’s Samba bombs with the judges, it looks like Jason will be a shoo-in for the top spot. But… uh-oh! Carrie Ann thinks Jason’s attempt to be flamboyant didn’t go well at all. Len says the dance was, “all right, not good enough.” And even Bruno says Jason wasn’t “on top of it.” Ouch!
Jason’s Tango scores him a 29, but his Samba only a 23, giving Jason & Edyta a total score of 52 out of 60.
Last up are the injured Cristian with his pro partner, Cheryl. Although Cristian’s ruptured tendon needs surgery right away, the docs are willing to give him 2-3 weeks, tops, as long as he doesn’t use the arm. Cristian feels that the best way to thank his fans for voting for him is to keep dancing, so he’s all-in. That means Cheryl’s biggest challenge this week is choreographing a dance that disguises Cristian’s injury.
First they dance a Foxtrot to Michael Jackson’s Beat It. The judges rave over both Cristian’s technical abilities and Cheryl’s choreography skills.
Cristian & Cheryl come back out for a Mambo, including an amazing one-armed lift at the end! Len says the dance is “fabulous,” and Carrie Ann raves, “You two are definitely on fire!” Bruno says the dance has “more energy than a volcano in the Andes!”
In the upset of the night, Cristian & Cheryl gather up some 10s! They score a 28 for their Foxtrot and a 29 for their Mambo, bringing their overall score to 57 out of 60 and bumping both Jason and Kristi out of the top spot.
Tomorrow night on Dancing with the Stars:
Someone is sent home.
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Photo Courtesy: Kelsey McNeal/ABC