DWTS13 Week 5 Power Rankings

COWABUNGA!!! I don’t know about you guys, but I sure had fun during 80s night 8) I love how it brought out the fun side in all of the couples.  Plus it felt like I was listening to the 80s mix on my iPod.  Always a plus ;-)

Can’t say I’m terribly surprised at how things stacked up tonight, although I hope that the voting does help a few couples who I’m not quite ready to let go of yet.  Gotta say – song selection tonight really seemed to trip some up and help others out.  Hope it’s not the final nail in the coffin for a few couples!

1.) JR & Karina – I definitely breathed an audible sigh of relief about 15 seconds into this dance when I realized that JR was gonna slay it, instead of going down in flames like I thought he would with that wretched song :-P It was one of the better sambas I’ve seen on the show – JR managed to cut loose and really get his hips working in a way that most celebs attempting the samba can’t.  The bounce wasn’t quite there, but he more than made up for it in sheer energy & fun.  The dude even managed to do SEVERAL samba rolls in a row! Quite a feat, considering my bf doesn’t even like to do them in competition…let alone teach them to newbies.  And best of all – it was nice to finally see him getting proper credit from the judges, both in comments and in critiques. No wishy-washy “8″ paddles, no “Well, it was pretty good, BUT-”…just a sincere, “Well done, JR!” Considering the kinda crazy points spread tonight, I think the likelihood of them being in danger is about the same as Len doing the Safety Dance tomorrow night ;-)

2.) Ricki & Derek – Wish I could say these two conquered their crummy song the same way JR did, but unfortunately Heidi & I’s qualms about “Easy Lover” as a foxtrot weren’t unfounded – this dance felt awkward & disjointed, although not necessarily terrible in the technique department.  The judges were right about one thing – the parts in hold were actually quite lovely, and were indeed a proper foxtrot.  The parts not in hold weren’t quite so lovely, but in the same token, why harp on someone for doing the Roger Rabbit if it’s freakin’ 80s week? It’s not like they did it for a very long time, and I felt like it was in the character of the dance, with the “80s prom” kinda theme it had going on.  It’s the same beef I had with the judges last season when they ripped apart Ralph’s “Sweet Home Alabama” samba – honestly, what did you expect them to do, given the song & the theme? *sigh* Whatever…I kind of expected them to manipulate things so that Ricki had an “off” week, so I can’t say I’m shocked and awed.  Just annoyed, as usual :-) I wouldn’t go so far as to say they’re completely safe (the points spread this week is looking pretty precarious…), but I will say that I think there are couples more LIKELY to head home.  Besides, they might benefit from a bit of rage-driven power voting this week, since the judges decided to be asshats :-P 

3.) David & Kym – Gotta say – David has pleasantly surprised me the past 2 weeks.  His dancing is improving, he seems to be calming down (sort of…), and he seems like he’s got a better focus and perspective on the competition now than, say, 3 weeks ago.  He’s not trying so hard anymore, and things seem to be coming more naturally for him…hell, in his rehearsals he seemed to be picking up on the tango without much outside direction from Kym! Nice to see him tapping into some of the potential that I thought I saw during week 1, but which disappeared in weeks 2 & 3 and has just now started creeping back into view.  The one thing that still concerns me, though, is that he seems like he doesn’t completely trust Kym 100% of the time – the whole bit about “I don’t wanna break hold!” makes me worry that he may try to fight her on certain choreographic decisions that, let’s face it – are better left to the pros :-) That said – I think he proved tonight that he could be a potential obstacle for Hope to overcome for that 3rd place in the finale.  He handled his tango, while Hope just kind of stumbled through hers.  Judging from the scores, I’d say there’s still the POTENTIAL for a shock elim…but as I said before, I think there are other couples that are more likely to fall victim to it…

4.) Hope & Maks – Eeeeek.  I’m afraid to say it, but that Hope backslid into week 3 territory with this tango – every step just looked so deliberate, stompy, wide, and…muscle-y? I don’t really know what other word to use to describe it – it just felt to me like every step she took felt more like a rep on a weight machine in the gym, than an actual dance step….she was just powering through them with such aggression & power.  Now don’t get me wrong – aggression & power can be a good thing, especially in the tango & paso doble; but there still has to be a certain degree of finesse there as well, or else the dance looks more like a weightlifting competition.  :-) All of that said – I don’t think the judges are being particularly tactful or wise in critiquing Hope, which only seems to be adding fuel to not only Hope & Maks’ fire, but their fans’, too.  Saw a lot of rage on Twitter after Len’s comments in particular, which leads me to believe that Maksolo fans may just vote that much harder to compensate.  Which may be exactly what TPTB want…who knows.  I honestly thought they’d be pimping Hope a bit more for the last slot in the finale, since Chynna’s gone now, but at this rate I think David or even Rob may stand a better chance of making it there over Hope.  Rage voting will likely help them this week…but can it save them until the finale?

5.) Rob & Cheryl – Once again, I’m probably going to illicit quite a few eye rolls from this one…but Rob isn’t a bad dancer at all, kids. In fact, I’d say he’s probably the most naturally skilled partner Cheryl has had since Gilles…ever since he shook off the nerves of week 1, this kid seems to be moving with a finesse that most of the other guys in the competition have yet to find.  He had some pretty nice lines in this rumba, and managed to keep up with Cheryl without *gasp!* her having to dance circles around him.  Now if only he could connect with the dances in the same way that JR, Ricki, & David seem to :-) Or the audience, for that matter – if this kid could connect to both of those things (and avoid sounding like a douchebag in interviews, too) and still dance the way he has been the past few weeks…I’d have him pegged for the finale.  Seriously.  But fortunately for some of you, I don’t see him suddenly waking up in the next few weeks and having a Romeo-esque revelation where he’s suddenly feeling each dance 100% and is blowing everyone’s minds.  For now, I think he’s getting the scores he needs in order to stick around, but given his track record of kinda turning off fans of the show…I doubt he’s got more than 2 weeks left in him.

6.) Chaz & Lacey – Chaz makes me smile :-) Say what you will about his dancing, compared to other celebs this season – but I just have loved watching him grow and really throw himself headlong into learning how to dance the past few weeks.  I really think this samba was the 2nd best dance he’s had, after his cha-cha…it was simple, it was cute, he stayed on time, and he looked like he had fun.  That’s all I think I could really ask of Chaz, at this point.  I know a lot of folks are balking at the fact that he’s still around this week, saying that “Ugh! He should have been gone weeks ago! He SUCKS!” but I’ve honestly seen improvement in the past 2 weeks.  He’s sort of pulling a Kendra in my eyes: starting out ok-ish to good, falling into a slump, and then ending on a higher note – which is a good way to go out, IMO :-) If Chaz does go home this week, I think he’ll do it with pride, knowing that he did grow and improve during his time on the show.  But I do think he’s probably got 1 more week left in him, so I’m verrrry cautiously calling him safe…although the scores are kinda dangerous this week…

7.) Carson & Anna – Ok, so the technique in this jive was pretty much non-existent, and Carson lost his timing & his steps all over the place.  But do I give a rat’s ass? HELL NO :-) Why? Cause it was more fun than eating Pudding Pops in my Treasure Trolls sleeping bag on the shag carpet in front of my parents’ 17″ bubble screen tv while watching China Beach, circa 1989! And let me tell, my friends – that was a LOT of fun.  ;-) Honestly, if there was ever a good argument for a couple on DWTS staying longer than they should have despite their scores – it’s Carson & Anna.  These two are just so much FUN to watch that half the time I don’t care if they even dance or not…somehow I think Carson could walk to the center of the floor and read the phone book and still be hilarious.  That said – I do understand why they got the scores they did this week…although I kinda wish they had pulled a Chynna and given Carson a very kind score despite him forgetting his choreo.  Come to think of it – I actually think this was better than Chynna’s tango gone sour, since Carson managed to avoid the dreaded “deer in the headlights” look.  Anywho.  He may have the lowest score of the night, but after the craziness that had to occur with the voting last week in order for Chynna to go home - I think Carson has it in him to stave off elimination yet again.  Especially since he’s likely more magnetic than the other 2 low-scorers…

8.) Nancy & Tristan – Sorry MacGrace fans, but I just don’t have as much of a connection with these two as I do the other couples.  I’m afraid that they’ve fallen victim to the curse of decently well-executed choreo that just doesn’t excite.  Aside from that filthy, delicious glance Tristan tossed Carrie Ann’s way at the beginning of this dance (ummm…meow? ;-)), this rumba really had little to no heat for me…yeah, Nancy did the steps pretty well and had some nice turns, but there was simply nothing that really jumped out at me.  It was just kinda…there.  And I can’t help but wonder if other viewers are starting to feel the same way.  Nancy may have 3 points more than Carson & one more than Chaz…but does she have Carson’s appeal? Or Chaz’s underdog charm? I’m not so sure…and with the points spread being as funky as it is, I wouldn’t be shocked if any one of the 3 went home…hell, I wouldn’t be shocked if some of the higher-scorers went home! But since I have to guess…I’m gonna go with Nancy & Tristan.  You can only do simple dances for so long before people fall asleep…

So did you guys find 80s night as rad as I did? Who’s number do you think is up this week? And who do you think will get the encore? I daresay it may finally be JR & Karina’s turn ;-) HOLLER!