‘Dancing With The Stars’ Recap: Willow Shields Tops The Leaderboard
Dancing With the Stars returned this week with the top 10 remaining competitors performing dances for the most memorable years of their lives.
Dancing With The Stars Recap
Nastia Liukin and Derek Hough kicked off the night with an Argentine tango choreographed to remember 2008, the year that Nastia won a gold medal at the Summer Olympics in Beijing. The dance, set to the song she used for her floor routine at the Olympics, showed off Nastia’s flexibility and technique. The only criticism the judges have for the athlete is the lack of emotion on her face during the performance. Scores: 9+8+9+10=36
Dancing to “I’m Not My Father’s Son,” Michael Sam remembered the most pivotal year in his life in which he came out of the closet only to have his estranged father turn his back on him again, 2014. His rumba with Peta Murgatroyd was emotional and inspiring and earned the judges’ praise, as it was likely his best dance to date. Scores: 7+7+8+8=30
Riker Lynch and his brother’s group R5 blew up in 2014, so that’s the year he wants to remember in his tango this week with Allison Holker. Allison, sticking with modernizing the dances for the young singer, once again does it with an uptempo tango. Though it looks like Riker has a little trouble performing the tango so quickly, his movements still impress the judges. Scores: 8+8+9+9=34
Robert Herjavec and Kym Johnson took on a waltz for 2006, the year that Robert lost his mother – who loved Dancing with the Stars – to ovarian cancer. The sophisticated and classy dance serves as a perfect tribute to his mother. Len Goodman thought that it was his best dance yet and the other judges complimented Robert’s technique as well. Scores: 8+9+8+9=34
Chris Soules’ most memorable year was 2014, the year he met and got engaged to his fiancée Whitney on The Bachelor. With Witney Carson, he danced a romantic rumba that brought out the Iowa farmer’s more elegant side. The judges thought that he started off a bit unsteady but hit a sweet spot around the middle of the dance. Scores: 7+6+7+7=27
Patti LaBelle and Artem Chigvintsev did a jazz routine for Patti’s most memorable year 1973 – the year her son was born – to the tune of her hit “Dan Swit Me.” Though once again Patti proved that she might be the weakest dancer still in the competition, her pure entertainment factor elevates the overall performance. The judges find her enthusiasm infectious. Scores: 8+7+7+8=30
In 2014, Rumer Willis, inspired by her sister, decided to stand up to bullies. Dancing a waltz with Val Chmerkovskiy to Adele’s “Turning Tables,” Willis again showed that she’s a strong contender for the Mirror Ball Trophy. Despite the nearly flawless dancing, the judges took issue with Val’s choreography, which they felt was too contemporary. Scores: 9+8+9+9=35
Suzanne Somers’s most memorable year was the year she landed Three’s Company – 1977. Tony Dovolani choreographed a Foxtrot that incorporated the three-camera comedy. The dance, which was dedicated to Suzanne’s late costar John Ritter, was by far her best yet. Though the judges thought it was elegant, their scores didn’t reflect the positive commentary. Scores: 7+7+7+7=28
Willow Shields and Mark Ballas did a contemporary routine to remember 2011, the year that Willow was cast as Primrose Everdeen in The Hunger Games series. Fittingly, Mark choreographed a number that featured a Hunger Games theme, with each of them competing as tributes alongside other dancers. The ensemble piece impressed the judges, who gave the competition’s youngest participant three 10s. Scores: 10+9+10+10=39
Noah Galloway and Sharna Burgess, doing a contemporary dance, remembered 2005, the year that Noah lost his arm and a leg during his second deployment to Iraq. Dancing to “American Soldier,” the dance is heavy thematically, bringing the best out of the war veteran. Impressively, Noah lifted Sharna multiple times throughout the routine with one arm. Scores: 8+8+8+8=32
At the end of the night, it was revealed that Michael Sam and Sharna Burgess had been voted out of the competition.
Dancing with the Stars airs Mondays on ABC at 8/7c.