This week marked the elimination of the last couple before “Dancing with the Stars” enters its semifinals for season 11. As per usual on the show, there were some surprises, and some not-so-surprises, and a welcome elevation of the competition in general, a promising turn as season 11 goes into its final weeks.
The dance show on Monday saw each of the five remaining couples do two different dances. First up for each was their prepared choreographed routine, where they had gotten to pick their own music. Then came the “instant dance,” where the couples had to adapt already-learned choreography to songs that they had been handed only a couple of minutes before. Some last-minute drama popped up between judge Carrie Ann Inaba and Brandy’s professional partner Maksim Chmerkovskiy that carried over into the results show on Tuesday night as well.
The drama carried into Tuesday’s results show, where even though she and her partner are tied for first place with Jennifer Grey and her partner Derek Hough, Brandy found herself in danger of being eliminated. The show featured performances by John Legend and the Roots, as well as allowing four of the current children’s national dancing champs to perform on live television, which went over well with the audience.
Bristol Palin is a full ten points behind the leaders, yet was somehow miraculously spared from elimination and will be in the semi-finals. After an hour-long program that featured the painful “Dance Center” skits, we found out that Kurt Warner and his partner Anna Trebunskaya will not.
Kurt isn’t a natural dancer, and has struggled throughout the competition, but was a crowd favorite for his good attitude and willingness to work hard to improve. The judges praised him as a “true gentleman”-right before ousting him.
With Kurt’s elimination, there are four couples that now face the semi-final round next week: Jennifer Grey and Derek Hough, Brandy and Maksim Chmerkovskiy, Bristol Palin and Mark Ballas, and Kyle Massey and Lacey Schwimmer. At the moment, the contest is being looked at largely as a competition between Jennifer and Brandy, but a strong showing by 19-year old Massey as he and Schwimmer did a fun and flawless jive this week gave him some extra staying power. Despite her enthusiasm for her own appearances, it was a bit of a surprise that Palin made it past elimination this week, and it would take an incredibly strong turn-around on her part to see her in the finals against strong leaders like Brandy and Jennifer.
“Dancing with the Stars” airs twice a week. The dance portion of the competition is shown on Monday night at 8pm, and the results/elimination portion is shown on Tuesday night at 9pm. Both air on ABC . You can see full episodes in multiple locations online, including HULU.com .