'Dancing With The Stars' Recap: Janel Parrish & Bethany Mota Earn Perfect 10s; Randy Couture Eliminated
Dancing with the Stars returned Monday with Movie Night, in which actor Kevin Hart took over Len Goodman’s seat on the judges’ panel. Not only were the celebrities dancing movie-themed dances, but they were on high alert about whether or not they would be the second one going home from last Monday's routines.
Dancing with the Stars Recap
After finding out that they were one of the pairs in jeopardy, Randy Couture and Karina Smirnoff took on the season’s first Paso Doble. Going with a Rocky theme, Karina choreographed an intense routine. Unfortunately, Randy’s biggest cheers came when he merely struck a pose – not when he was clumsily attempting to execute the dance moves. Julianne Hough and Bruno Tonioli found little to like about the performance. Scores: 7+7+6+6=26
Alfonso Riberio, eager to prove he can master ballroom dancing, did a quickstep, which was oddly given an Austin Powers theme. While Alfonso still brought his individuality to the dance, he managed to stick more with the technique as far as his footwork and frame were concerned. While the judges still think he’s a frontrunner, they want him to continue honing his technique. Scores: 8+8+8+8=36
Betsey Johnson and Tony Dovolani performed a contemporary routine channeling Demi Moore and Patrick Swayze in Ghost. Betsey continued to prove that age is just a number, going into an impressive split following a lift. While the performance was commendable, the judges – except for Kevin Hart – weren’t overly impressed. Scores: 7+9+6+7 = 29
As could be expected, the Back to the Future prom served as the backdrop for Lea Thompson and Artem Chigvintsev’s cha cha. The gimmick even included the pair arriving to the show via a DeLorean. Despite the crowd-pleasing Back to the Future theme, Lea’s third dance on the show was unfortunately her worst to date. Scores: 7+8+8+8 = 31.
Taking on a waltz this week, Michael Waltrip and Emma Slater took their inspiration from Robin Hood. In order to bring out the best from Michael, Emma attempted to slow down and simplify the ballroom dance. The strategy worked, as the judges concluded it was the best they’ve seen from the former NASCAR star. Scores: 7+7+7+7=28
Antonio Sabato, Jr. and Cheryl Burke, who have been finding it difficult to get along during rehearsals, danced a foxtrot with a Guardians of the Galaxy theme. Considering the light-hearted tone of the film, the foxtrot routine could have gone in a more fun and energetic direction. However, Burke’s choreography, which Antonio executed well, proved rather boring. Scores: 7+7+7+8=20
Sadie Robertson, who was somewhat indignant about her scores and critiques from last week, was determined to prove her skills this week in her Viennese Waltz with Mark Ballas. Paying homage to Pixar’s Up, the routine included balloons and some smooth dancing. While Sadie is a natural dancer, her personality is still struggling to come through. Scores: 8+8+8+8=32
Jonathan Bennett and Allison Holker, upon learning that they’re in danger of elimination, danced a Great Gatsby-themed Tango. After getting some Dancing with the Stars choreography advice from Mark Ballas, Allison gave the dance a bit more of a sensual feel. Though the judges told the Mean Girls star to improve his frame, they did think he did a good job getting into the song. Scores: 8+8+8+8=32
Dancing to “America” from West Side Story was Janel Parrish and her pro partner Val Chmerkovskiy. While learning that he wasn’t able to include moves from the hit musical movie into the dance caused a hiccup in Val’s plans, he still managed to choreograph a captivating jazz routine complete with a troupe of backup dancers. The judges loved the energy and creativity of the performance. Scores: 10+10+10+10=40
Following Janel and Val’s masterful performance was Tommy Chong and Peta Murgatroyd, who danced a Scent of a Woman-themed Argentine Tango. Once again, Tommy proved that he’s a genuine contender despite many – including his pal Cheech – doubting his abilities. The judges praised the funny man’s poise on the dance floor. Scores: 8+10+8+8=34
Derek Hough choreographed a jazz routine that channeled Singin’ in the Rain for Bethany Mota. Hough, an admitted admirer of Gene Kelly, went all in on the preparation and production of the number. As a result, he really shined during the performance, while Bethany ended up being more or less of a prop. Despite Bethany’s limited contribution to the dance, the judges praised the performance. Scores: 10+10+10+10=40
In the bottom three after Tavis Smiley’s elimination last week were Randy, Antonio and Jonathan. In the end, it was Randy and Karina who had to say goodbye to the competition.
Dancing with the Stars returns next week with the “Most Memorable Year” theme.