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'Dancing with the Stars' - 'Performance #5' Recap

by Michael Pascua, posted Apr 26th 2010 10:00PM
(S10E10) With Kate Gosselin gone from 'Dancing with the Stars,' the show can finally get to actual competition. Her disappearance from the bottom of the score board has now vanquished scores below 20. The contestants have two dances: either the Samba or Argentine Tango and the Swing Dance Marathon.
As the contestants walk down the stairs, I cringed, remembering that the celebrities were in charge of creating the outfits this week for the Samba/Argentine Tango. Jake has the biggest fashion crime, mixing the odd leopard print with a floral print. He's followed by Pam, who created a nightie with the strap down; she could have pulled that out of her own closet. Without Kate's silly "I love you," I now am focused on Maks now tugging his ear to the camera.

Jake & Chelsie - Samba - Chelsie brought Jake to a samba club to learn about the fun nature of a Brazilian samba. Jake is hoping to close the gap between Nicole, Evan, and the rest of the pack. Unfortunately, with the way the dance looked, he just furthered his distance. Jake continues to walk to place and his lunge extensions feel overstretched. The odd stretching caused him to kick the judges' stair and trip yet again. His definition of shaking his hips is weak. The dance overall felt slow and off-tempo for the song.

Len sees more confidence, but feels Jake lacked rhythm. He also notes Jake's stepping on the judges' stair. Bruno saw the lack of rhythm and bounce; the wiggle wasn't right. Carrie Ann knows that Jake pushes himself to the max, but says he needs to connect to the music. Score: 21 (7,7,7).

Evan & Anna - Samba - Anna exudes more personality this season than in previous ones; she definitely is having a better time teaching Evan. Anna slammed Evan's head on a mat while practicing and he has a mild concussion. To the sadistic people out there, they repeat the scene at least twice. As the dance starts, Evan has more hip action and raunchiness than Jake. His extensions looked odd because of his lanky appendages. He continues to look like an ice skater on the floor because Anna continues to slip in spins.

Bruno knows that Evan has lyrical lines, but it doesn't fit in samba. His legs were pointed badly. Carrie Ann thought that he lost the battle against the samba because his movements didn't fit. The dance was disjointed. Len thought it was Evan's worst dance because it looked like ballet. Score: 21 (7,7,7).

Niecy & Louis - Argentine Tango - Niecy wants to do the first comedic Argentine Tango the show has seen. Niecy tries to eat a rose, but I was surprised when she had more leg action. The comedic nature is an interesting touch and something only a few people can really pull off. The fact that she even attempted that kick to Louis' shoulder was commendable. I love that Louis pulled out a cookie at the end.

Carrie Ann liked seeing Niecy actually dance; her body was firm and she was in the zone. She congratulates her for including a lift. Len liked the comedy because of the food. There wasn't as much intensity in Len's book. Bruno thought the footwork was improved, but the intensity was sacrificed a bit. Score: 21 (7,7,7).

Erin & Maks - Samba - Maks wants Erin to get the steps naturally, but she continues to over-analyze. I hated the Muppet skirt when she walked down the stairs, but she won me over when she moved. The dress moved really well for being so fluffy. Erin didn't really look like she was breathing throughout the performance, but she kept up with the choreography. I'm not sure exactly why Maks lost his shirt in the whole process, but it was an added bonus to a very clean performance.

Len announces that Erin's getting a 7 because she's still using too many props. Bruno knows that she did well, her arm placement was spot-on. Carrie Ann knows that sambas are hard, but Carrie Ann thought Erin nailed it. Score: 25 (9,7,9).

Chad & Cheryl - Argentine Tango - Chad goes back to Cincinnati to thank the fans. Cheryl wants to make sure Chad is actually in command. Cheryl's passionate motions work really well for Argentine Tango. Chad still looks like he's unsure of himself, readjusting his feet every so often. I like the trust that Cheryl showed, throwing herself into Chad for the lifts; the end was strong.

Bruno thought it was strong and powerful. Carrie Ann thought that Chad nailed the dance; he had strong lines. Len thought that he grew. Score: 24 (8,8,8).

Nicole & Derek - Samba - Nicole started so exited because she thought she had the salsa, but it turns out she had the samba and she got stressed out. She stresses over everything, but I have an odd feeling that's just the editing. Nicole brings fire to the dance and the outfit she created helped emphasize her hip motions. She keeps the tempo and the passion of the song throughout the whole performance. The couple does a very interesting kick closing sequence to the routine.

Carrie Ann thought that Nicole did a great job, but sometimes she made a worried facial expression. Len thought the difficulty level was great, the line at the end was weak. There were no voltas or bota-fogos. Bruno thought the dance was superlative. Score: 26 (9,7,10).

Pamela & Damian - Argentine Tango - Pam wants to make sure that the two stay true to themselves. Pam worries a bit too much before executing lifts in practice. Pam didn't need the wig, but she maintained a strong character throughout. The lifts came off really effortless, her leg work was just sexy. I appreciated the closeness between the two and the well-planned lifts fit the dance well.

Len liked the intensity of the dance, but there were moments of roughness. Bruno loved the character again; Pamela lives the part. Carrie Ann loved the commitment, but she wanted more leg technique. Score: 22 (7,7,8).

Swing Dance Marathon

The marathon should look familiar if anyone saw the mambo competition. Couples are expected to dance three minutes if they make it all the way to the end; some professionals choreograph steps that they repeat (Chad's jump over Cheryl), while others create a three minute routine. Each couple practices at least one lift. In the practice video Chad calls Erin a tree.

The show needs to take a note from PBS' 'America's Ballroom Challenge' and learn how to focus on different characters. I think panning the camera more instead of cutting from camera to camera would be better. Jake and Chelsie were eliminated first. I'm not sure what Louis and Niecy were thinking of, bringing the comedic factor into a side-by-side competition, but the drop was funny. With the elimination of Evan and Anna, the circles were eliminated and the four remaining couples could use the whole floor. Mysteriously Pam & Damien were flipping around, but didn't get much camera time by their elimination. With two couples left, Nicole & Maks had to playfully push each other out of the way. Why they didn't use the other half of the stage is beyond me. Nicole & Derek managed to win, giving Derek two marathon wins.

Swing Scores

Jake - 4
Niecy - 5
Evan - 6
Chad - 7
Pam - 8
Erin - 9
Nicole - 10

Overall Score

Nicole & Derek - 36 (26 + 10)
Erin & Maks - 34 (25 + 9)
Chad & Cheryl - 31 (24 + 7)
Pam & Damian - 30 (22 + 8)


Evan & Anna - 27 (21 + 6)
Niecy & Louis - 26 (21 + 5)
Jake & Chelsie - 25 (21 + 4)

Jake's low score and his previous appearance in the bottom will probably lead to his demise. If only the Free Tony voters started to free Chelsie next. I do wonder where all of Kate's votes will go; though I have an odd feeling that most of Kate's voters will stop voting now that's she's gone.

I'm getting this odd deja vu of Nicole being Mya, Erin being Joanna, and Pam being Donny. Pam is strong at getting into characters like Donny the showman. Nicole is precise like Mya, but has a lot more passion, probably due to Derek's more television friendly choreography. Who do you think will be eliminated? Leave comments below.

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Its time to stop giving Pam so much love. She always looks like she is on drugs and dances slower than anyone else. How she made 8 points in the marathon is beyond me as my wife and I kept repeating how bad they both looked.

April 27 2010 at 10:50 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I liked Evan's dance! I think he was elegant and precise and did a better performance than they gave him. Niecy's was much better, too. They were hard on both. I don't like Erin because she is so stiff as she dances. And, Nicole had unpretty legs during the whole dance. Yes, she can bump and grind, and has the performance part down but they should be tougher on her. Jake bends his legs when he dances.
Top 3- Evan, Nicole, and Pam?

April 27 2010 at 8:08 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Cyn's comment

Hopefully Jake disappears this week and why put us through the Ipana toothpaste smile tonight??? There are thousands out there with heartache...what makes celebrities think theirs is so different than others? Tragedy is felt by all - celebrity or not.

April 27 2010 at 9:57 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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