May 02, 2011 07:17 PM by Allyson Wells
Tonight on Dancing with the Stars, the dancers compete against and with one another. In addition to doing their individual dances, they also work together for team dances. Dancing legends Donnie Burns, Luca Baricchi and Shirley Ballas also stop by to judge and help the stars. In this very even playing field, which stars will rise above the rest?
Host Tom Bergeron welcomes 16 time Latin Dance Champion, Donnie Burns, who will serve as a guest judge for the week. Karina Smirnoff explains that he is a ballroom God and Maksim Chemrkovskiy likens him to a dancing Tiger Woods. Donnie tells Tom that Americans do productions great, causing Tom to remark that Americans have done a lot of great things this week.
The night begins with the group dances. Both groups are to dance the cha-cha-cha. The teams are chosen by the highest scoring couples: Chelsea Kane and Mark Ballas and Hines Ward and Kym Johnson. Chelsea picks Ralph Macchio and Karina Smirnoff and Romeo and Chelsie Hightower. Hines picks Kirstie Alley and Maksim Chmerkovskiy and Kendra Wilkinson and Louis van Amstel.
Team Chelsea rehearsals begin by Karina suggesting to start off with a young couple and sandwich them in the middle. Ralph is worried because he feels so old. Romeo and Chelsea take him aside to try and get him to add some sex to his hips. Rehearsals are intense as they struggle to get on the beat. Romeo is on beat and looks great. I love the playfulness between him and Chelsie. Ralph’s hip action does look a lot better. He gives Mark a high five before exiting the stage. Mark and Chelsea also look great. The group routine is sexy, fun and in sync. When judged, Len thinks they all did a great job changing formats. Bruno likes that they went full throttle, but lost sync a little bit. Carrie Ann agrees with me that they were in sync and is impressed with Ralph for holding his own. Donnie believes they did a great job. He points out that Ralph missed a bit of the footwork, but was his hero last week so it’s all good. Backstage, Chelsea tells Brooke Burke working together as a team was fun. Donnie and Carrie Ann give them 8′s, while Bruno and Len give them 7′s.
Team Hines practices and Kirstie points out their team has the most butt. Louis reminds them it is all about formation. Kendra worries because Maks and Kirstie come into team practice without a solo. Kirstie feels bad for standing out in a bad way. Louis thinks their maturity will carry them, as Kendra breaks wind. Their intro is fun and a lot of shaking is going on. Kendra’s solo isn’t as sharp, but Kirstie delivers some fancy footwork in hers. Hines and Kym do their solo last and look great. The dance ends with more shaking. Bruno loves their transitions and thinks Kendra looks better. Carrie Ann thinks Kirstie was on fire in the solo, but Kendra’s arms looked weird and Hines made an error. Donnie doesn’t like the spacing between the couples. Len thinks this team of women won the booby prize. He thinks Kirstie was fantastic and Hines did a good job keeping up with the pros. He jokes that Kendra was shaking and he was stirred. Donnie and Carrie Ann give them 7′s, while Len and Bruno give them 8′s. This makes a tie for the two teams.
Chelsea Kane & Mark Ballas
Chelsea wants to work harder than ever and get more 10′s. They are doing the paso doble, which Mark thinks will be a challenge since she is so giggly and not aggressive. Shirley stops by to help them with their dance. Shirley orders her not to smile and that she is an actress and must play a serious role. Shirley wants Chelsea to show off her passionate side. When the dance starts, it looks like Chelsea is dragging a little bit. I like the move when Mark drags Chelsea across the floor. Chelsea does a good job at being dramatic, but the dance is a little weird. The judges are divided. Len is confused because there were moments of greatness but also too much in his face. Bruno likes what she put into it and loves her range. Carrie Ann loved the progressiveness of the dance. Donnie also found the dance to be confusing. Brooke asks how they process a standing ovation and mixed reviews from the judges. Chelsea just hopes Shirley is happy with their performance. Donnie and Len give them 8′s, while Carrie Ann and Bruno give them 9′s.
Kendra Wilkinson & Louis van Amstel
Louis congratulates Kendra on making it this far and wants her to be proud of herself. For their tango, Louis makes the choreography really hard because he believes she can do it. Kendra feels herself hiding in her shell again. The very handsome Luca stops by their rehearsal to help them. Luca doesn’t think she looks very comfortable with the dance. He instructs her to feel the music with her body. I love Kendra’s red layered dress for the tango. The dance is interesting because at moments Kendra looks wonderful, and other times she looks a bit off. The choreography by Louis is wonderful. Bruno likes how elegant Kendra looks, but thinks she needs to work on her frame. Carrie Ann is so proud of Kendra and thinks she recovered from a little mishap during the dance and looks sophisticated. Donnie notes that the level of choreography was very high and she did a good job. Len agrees that she did a good job with the demanding dance, but wants her to be more crisp in her movements. Donnie, Carrie Ann and Bruno give her 8′s, while Len gives her a 7.
Kirstie Alley & Maksim Chmerkovskiy
Kirstie wants to aim for two 10′s this week. They are doing a jive and Shirley stops by to help them. Maks explains that Shirley knows the little details to make their dance better. Maks yells at Kirstie that she is dancing too slow and like a Grandma. Kirstie yells that she needs a break and jokingly throws a tree. She has a tearful moment, but he reminds her that he is also under pressure and wants to do well. They hug and make up. Their dance starts off slow on purpose, then Kirstie pulls him in for a kiss and the dance kicks up in to high gear. Kirstie tries to keep up, but does get a bit off in the footwork. She keeps a smile on her face the entire time, though. The choreography to this dance is very playful and fun. Maks does a good job creating dances for Kirstie. Carrie Ann loves Kirstie and her entertainment, but points out that they were out of sync. Donnie buys what Kirstie is selling because she fills the dances with the spirit of who she is. Len liked the fun and playful elements of their jive, but the dance itself was lackluster. Bruno believes the entertainment element was enjoyable. Donnie gives Kirstie a 9, Carrie Ann a 7, Len a 6 and Bruno an 8. Backstage with Brooke, Kirstie explains she got caught up in the acting of it all and forgot to move her feet.
Ralph Macchio & Karina Smirnoff
Karina thanks Ralph for bringing her back to Earth in their last dance. Ralph asserts that they are a team no matter what and hopes their quickstep will not be a fallback. Luca suggests for him to not worry about the judges and be more confident. The strain gets to Ralph’s older body, but relies on his mental strength to help him get through. Karina points out how tough the quickstep is on the body and hopes Ralph can make it. The dance starts off so adorable as they dance at a bar together and look very light on their feet. Ralph’s hat is a nice touch. Ralph does much better in the ballroom dances than the Latin numbers. This is the Ralph that we saw in week one that was so great. He’s confident and having fun with it. Donnie tells Ralph his footwork this week was fabulous and they rocked. Len loved the energy and movement, but his upper body needs to be more stable. Len loves how vibrant the dance was and thinks Ralph sells it like no one else when he is in the zone. Carrie Ann boasts that Ralph is back and loved how he attacked the competition. Donnie gives Ralph a 10, Len gives him an 8, while Carrie Ann and Bruno give him 9′s.
Hines Ward & Kym Johnson
Hines is ready to get 10′s this week. Luca visits them to help. He thinks that Hines is thinking too much and not feeling enough. Hines giggles as they dance together, but thinks his perspective has been very helpful. Jerome “the bus” Bettis, Hines’ former Pittsburgh Steeler teammate stops by to watch them and he can’t stop laughing at Hines’ dance moves. Hines thinks if he can impress him, he can impress anyone. Their tango starts off very delicate, but then moves up in intensity. Hines has amazing footwork, but you can tell when he is thinking and not feeling the movements. Len has mixed emotions, as some of the movements were crisp and dramatic but other moves were too dainty. Bruno likes the dance and the delivery. Carrie Ann likes how he commands every dance, but he was a bit off balance in some parts. Donnie thinks Hines has a winning mentality and tons of charisma. He suggests that Hines works on his arms more. Donnie and Carrie Ann give him 9′s, Len gives him an 8, while Bruno gives him his first 10.
Romeo & Chelsie Hightower
Romeo is thrilled to have given Chelsie her first ten. He wants to take it to another level and be at the top of the leader board alone. For their samba, Romeo wants to add his own flair. Chelsie reminds him it is a party dance. Shirley comes in to help and finds him very responsive to her advice. She jokes he is too responsive and a naughty boy. Romeo has a great time learning how to shake from her. I like that Romeo always puts personality into his dances. He does need to work on his posture, though. This dance isn’t as technically great as last week’s. Bruno thinks he raised the heat but to get his leg bounces correct. Carrie Ann knows he has potential, but he must focus on his technique. Donnie explains he has watched him grow all season, but he needs to work on his footwork. Len didn’t like the dance at all and reminds him that he must up his game because any one could go home over one bad dance. Carrie Ann and Bruno give him 7′s, while Len and Donnie give him 8′s.
At the end of the night, Ralph and Karina and Hines and Kym are tied for first. Kirstie and Maks and Chelsie and Romeo are tied at the bottom. As Len told Romeo, no one seems to be safe from elimination. Who do you think will go home? Tune into the results show tomorrow to see.
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Photo Credit: ABC