Dancing with the Stars 2010 week 9, otherwise known as the season 11 semifinals, aired Monday night and featured fancy footwork by the four remaining Mirrorball hopefuls. While Jennifer Grey dominated with a “flawless” Cha Cha Cha and a soul-baring Waltz, another star impressed with her best offering of DWTS season 11. Here’s a look at the action, from start to finish.
The night’s action began with a Latin round, which required each celeb to not only take on a brand new dance, but to perform a solo. Up first to rise to the challenge were R&B singer Brandy and partner Maksim Chmerkovskiy. The leaderboard topping duo performed a Paso Doble that I’d call non-traditional. It had an almost disco-like feel to it, in fact. Not bad, but not her best performance of DWTS season 11.
Head judge Len Goodman praised Brandy for coming out “100%” and appreciated “the aggression” and “attack”. Bruno Tonioli enjoyed the emotion she put into it, but noted some missteps. Carrie Ann agreed with both men and noted her excellent “connection with her character”. Brandy and Maksim Chmerkovskiy’s Dancing with the Stars 2010 week 9 round one results: 9, 9, 9 = 27.
Actress Jennifer Grey and Derek Hough, who last week captured DWTS season 11’s first perfect score as well as a share of the top spot on the leaderboard, were up next with a Cha Cha Cha. The 50-year old Dirty Dancing star opened the act with a judge-vamping solo that left Bruno shimmying in his seat, and proceeded to spin and shake with the best of ’em. Pour me some hot sauce, Baby, because that one had some heat!
Bruno rose to his feet, calling the dance “a luminous, vibrant, sexy cha cha cha” and praising her execution as “flawless”. Carrie Ann said she’d waited all season for Jennifer to do a cha cha and was “not disappointed”. Len praised her “good technique”, level of difficulty and entertainment value. Jennifer Grey and Derek Hough’s Dancing with the Stars 2010 week 9 round one results: 10, 10, 10 = 30.
The most controversial Dancing with the Stars 2010 semifinalist, teen activist Bristol Palin and partner Mark Ballas, took to the Ballroom floor next with her round one Paso Doble. Bristol hit the floor decked out in a dominatrix-esque black and silver number and dominated her solo. The rest of the dance was great for Bristol: Easily her best dance of the season. Woooo!
Carrie Ann called Bristol forward for a hug and told her “you were on fire”. Len noted that she’d been in the bottom two six times, but said “you’ve fired a few blanks” but called it her best dance. Bruno said “the little lamb is turning into a tigress” and loved her “Spanish lines”. Bristol Palin and Mark Ballas’ Dancing with the Stars 2010 week 9 round one results: 9, 9, 9 = 27.
Rounding out the first round of Dancing with the Stars week 9 were Disney kid Kyle Massey and Lacey Schwimmer with a Samba. The crowd-pleaser came out in typical crowd-pleaser fashion with his hips a swingin’ and his lips pursed in their usual funky “I smell something weird” alignment. It was fun and fresh. I still don’t love his technique, but hey, it was definitely good TV.
Len expressed appreciation for Kyle’s “bionic bum” and praised the “bounce for the ounce”. Bruno called him a “bouncing bundle of joy”. Carrie Ann proclaimed she’d never seen so much pelvic action. Kyle Massey and Lacey Schwimmer’s Dancing with the Stars 2010 week 9 round one results: 10, 9, 10 = 29.
Dancing with the Stars 2010 week 9 rolled on with round two, which I’ve unofficially dubbed the Ballroom Bonanza. Brandy and Maks got things started with their Argentine Tango. There was a little too much messing around at the beginning of the routine and Brandy seemed to do a whole lot of posing throughout, but hey, it still looked good.
Len praised Brandy’s extension and lines, and enjoyed the “atmosphere” she’d created. Bruno called it “lush, languid, voluptuos [yes, he mispronounced it like that]” and “stunning”. Carrie Ann declared “the trouble is gone” and called it “amazing, ridiculous”. Uh, okay. I’m no pro judge, but sheesh. I didn’t realize that prance, pose, stretch, pose, stretch equalled a great dance, but that’s okay. I agree with the atmosphere assertion so it’s cool. Brandy and Maksim Chmerkovskiy’s Dancing with the Stars 2010 week 9 round two results: 10, 10, 10 = 30. 27 + 30 = 57.
The DWTS season 11 semifinals continued with a round two Waltz by Jennifer and Derek. They opened with a gorgeous layback spin and went on to create a stunning atmosphere that was all their own. She looked like a snowflake out there, floating toward the ground.
Bruno called it “a gem of a waltz” and said it was”danced with ease”. Carrie Ann proclaimed that she could see inside Jennifer’s soul (blah, who let Mia Michaels into Carrie Ann’s body?). Len asserted “sometimes a whisper can speak louder than a shout” and “if I’m dreaming, don’t wake me up because that was fabulous”. Jennifer Grey and Derek Hough’s Dancing with the Stars 2010 week 9 round two results: 10, 10, 10 = 30. 30 + 30 = 60.
On the heels of their first 9s of DWTS season 11, Bristol and Mark were up next with a Waltz of their own. She may not be the most skilled of the contestants in the semis, but she’s come so, so far when it comes to increasing her performance value and delivering solid routines. Her Waltz had a lovely lyrical quality about it that I never would’ve expected entering the season.
Carrie Ann criticized her for not creating enough emotion and for “too much space”. Len said it had “a haunting feeling about it” and told her to “be proud”. Bruno appreciated her “woman of mystery” approach and the extent of the journey she’s taken throughout her time on the show. Bristol Palin and Mark Ballas’ Dancing with the Stars 2010 week 9 round two results: 8, 9, 9 = 26. 27 + 26 = 53.
The evening came to a close with Kyle and Lacey’s round two Argentine Tango. Once again, full of flair, fun and the usual extraverted Kyle-ness. I could’ve done with more Kyle dancing and less Lacey dancing just for showman’s sake, but it was solid.
Len called him “a star” and called him the show’s greatest performer ever. Bruno said he was “strong, sharp and masculine” and dubbed him “season 11 Mr. Masculine”. Carrie Ann likened him to previous DWTS winner Emmitt Smith, which of course thrilled the Disney Kid. Kyle Massey and Lacey Schwimmer’s Dancing with the Stars 2010 week 9 round two results: 10, 9, 10 = 29. 29 + 29 = 58.
So that’s it for the Dancing with the Stars 2010 semifinals. Who goes home tomorrow night and who makes it to next week’s finals? Ooh, that’s a tough one. Sure, Bristol Palin seems like the obvious choice, given that she’s been the weakest link of the four semifinalists througout the season, but she’s also managed to stick around this long. Kyle Massey’s crazed, hyper-spastic energy will likly land him a spot in the finals, too. So that leaves usual leaderboard toppers Jennifer Grey and Brandy under the gun.
Yeah, it sounds weird to me, too. But Brandy had an off-night tonight (comparatively), and Jennifer’s fans may make the assumption that her perfect 60 will pass her easily on to week 10 even without the aid of votes.
So after all of those ruminations, I’ll backtrack and say that Bristol the Pistol will get the boot, even though I don’t really think that’ll happen. To see how it plays out, tune in to the Dancing with the Stars 2010 semifinals results show tomorrow night. Or you can just check in with me. You know I’ll be watching.