October 15, 2012 08:00 PM by Stephanie Gustafson
Taking on the role of a Dancing with the Stars all star means having seemingly insurmountable challenges thrown at you every week. This week may be the toughest yet, with the contestants forced to perform everything from disco to hip hop and even Bollywood! Disasters are to be expected, but a few stars just might step up to the challenge and blow us away!
On last week’s results show, each of the contestants had the privilege of choosing a dance style for one of the other teams. As you can guess, some of the pairs weren’t too thrilled about their chosen styles. The audience, on the other hand, is psyched to see this season’s all stars bring it in a wide range of dances. The other exciting news? Paula Abdul is joining the show as a guest judge! She’s gotten a bad rap while sitting next to Simon on American Idol, but it is immediately evident that she gets on well with Carrie Ann, Len and especially with Bruno.
Kirstie Alley is not doing “baby dances” or “grandma dances” so she wants people stop thinking that she has it easy. Sorry Kirstie — while you and Maks are certainly entertaining, the choreography just isn’t at the level of the other dancers (excluding Bristol, of course). It’s tough to top last week’s Jagger routine, but Kirstie and Maks put up a good effort while dancing the Charleston. Kirstie pops out of a huge cake and makes the age-old amateurish mistake of separating her knees and flashing the audience while climbing out of the prop. Oops. The judges agree that the dance wasn’t “tight” enough and could have used a lot more finesse.
Bristol wound up with rock and roll during last week’s selection process. She expects to be doing something along the lines of heavy metal…not the bunny hop. Yeah, Mark Ballas wants to dress in a full-on bunny costume. Predictably, Bristol’s not as enthused. The whole gorilla outfit didn’t go so well last time she was on DWTS. It looks like Bristol made the right call, because the judges loved her rendition of At The Hop. I’ve never been a big fan of Bristol, but I will say this much: she’s no longer an eyesore. She’s passed up the Kate Gosselin level of dancing and I’m so glad to see her improving. Unfortunately, on a season of all stars, that’s not good enough.
Disco diva Sabrina Bryan is ready to put it all on the dance floor after getting lots of criticism from Carrie Ann Inaba. Carrie Ann complained that Sabrina’s last dance was more of the same. I thought “the same” was pretty good, but hey, Carrie Ann’s the expert. When Sabrina steps out onto the dance floor, it looks like she’s been eaten alive by Cookie Monster. She quickly gets rid of the awful blue…thing…and then comes dangerously close to flashing the audience in a slinky gold outfit. The dance is passable, but there are some definite flubs in the execution.
Emmit and Cheryl have to perform the bolero this week. One problem: Cheryl’s never performed the bolero before. She brings in a huge posse of experts to help her out in rehearsal. I haven’t seen much of the bolero in the past, so I don’t really know what to expect. The performance turns out to be a pleasant surprise, with the pair looking super sensual out on the dance floor. The judges are impressed. Bruno gets so excited that he almost knocks Paula over with a wave of his arm.
Learning the bolero might be tough for Emmit and Cheryl, but they have it easy when compared to Gilles and Peta. These two were stuck with Bollywood, and while it’s a neat-looking dance style, it’s also a tough one to pull off. Len thinks that the dance was hotter than curry (pronounced “cowie”). Paula’s reaction is accompanied by a spot-on Bruno impression. Why did everyone hate her on American Idol? She fits in so well with the DWTS judges…I’d love to see her back. And I’d love to see more Bollywood from Gilles!
Watch out Shawn, because you’re being targeted by Melissa Rycroft! Although Melissa’s been a top competitor this season, she views Shawn as a major threat. And she should, seeing as Shawn received rave reviews from the judges last week. Although the tricks in Melissa and Tony’s jitterbug aren’t quite up to Shawn’s standard, they are still pretty darn impressive.
During a side-trip to Des Moines (Shawn’s hometown) we meet a few potential contestants for next season of DWTS: the 2012 women’s gymnastics team! McKayla is already a natural for the mambo and I think she would be a great addition to next season’s cast list. That’s not to say Shawn is lacking — as amazing as she was last week, her mambo is even better! The judges agree, with Carrie Ann telling the other contestants that they should be worried and Len offering up “Good news from Goodman” (the good news is that Len’s not gonna be the rule enforcement spoilsport). All I can say is, if Shawn’s booted in favor of Bristol, I’m gonna be pissed.
Karina and Apolo are not excited about hip hop. The only time I’ve heard this much bleeped-out cussing on DWTS was when Hope and Maks were paired together! Apolo actually looks a hell of a lot more thug during practice than Karina does. Things are even worse during the actual performance than in practice…Karina and Apolo both look a bit awkward with their out-of-date hip hop choreography, and what’s worse, Karina slips and falls. She starts crying at the end of the dance, worrying that she’s screwed up the entire performance. The judges are sympathetic, although Len gives a bit of a backhanded compliment when he tells Karina that he wasn’t watching her in the first place.
Move over So You Think You Can Dance – Dancing with the Stars is taking on contemporary! Val was none to pleased about this, given the fact that he has absolutely no background in contemporary. Kelly and Val don’t have a ton of technical ability in this style and the two are definitely out of sync at a few points. Still, the emotion presented is truly touching. As Bruno points out, it takes years of training to pull off contemporary, and Kelly’s managed to give us a convincing performance after just one week.
It’s certainly been an interesting episode, with all of the contestants stepping out of the comfort zone. Shawn and Gilles are at the top of the leader board and Kirstie has moved into last place (oh boy, the Bristol Palin haters will have a heyday with that one). Once again, it’s a complete toss-up as to who will go home tomorrow night. Cross your fingers that last week’s complete rip-off is avoided this time around.
Who was your favorite tonight? And what did you think of Paula’s presence? Share your reactions and your voting plans in the comments section below!
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Photo Credit: ABC