Well, if you want to know, you have to click on the little “read more” button. :-) Read more..
So this no elim/split performance night sure does throw a wrench into the normal, everyday workings here at Pure :-P I realize that, since there is no elimination this week, it’s sort of pointless to try and predict who goes home – but the power rankings do allow for some interesting discussion, so we don’t want to just skip them altogether. So just think of these as “theoretical power rankings” – who I would predict to go home if there actually was an elimination this week. And since it’s split into two nights, this is what I’m going to do: tonight’s rankings are just for those that we saw dancing individually tonight (Gilles & Peta, Kelly & Val, Kirstie & Maks, Emmitt & Cheryl) – so if these were the only contestants left, who I would predict to go home out of the four. I’ll also include some thoughts on Team “Call Me Maybe”. For tomorrow’s rankings, I will rank EVERYONE – and to save myself the work (and the redundancy) of commenting on every single couple again, I will probably just copy and paste my commentary from this post, and add any additional commentary I feel necessary after seeing tomorrow night’s couples dance. Make sense? Good…because I’m not so sure I understand it myself :-P
1.) Gilles & Peta – Well, guess I can’t really get too mad at the overscoring of this one, since it’s kind of become par for the course this season. I actually thought Gilles had some really nice lines in this rumba – he was actually extending both his arms and his legs nicely. But my big problem was that I still felt like Peta was doing all the work…and it got a little repetitive. To concur with Len, I got tired of the leg extensions and displays of flexibility really quickly, and it seemed to slow everything down just a little too much. It was a time-waster in an already shortened routine. It seemed like the first part (the a cappella part) was nice, and then once the crescendo hit with the instruments it was all overwrought emotion from there on out. I would have probably given it a 28, tops, because I felt like there just wasn’t as much content as there should have been. 29.5 is an awfully cushy score.
2.) Emmitt & Cheryl – Lack of hip action and excessive shimmying aside – I actually ended up really liking this routine :-) Probably my favorite individual routine of the night, as Emmitt just seemed to be having a ton of fun to a really cheesy song. I got a little worried at the beginning when I saw Cheryl doing a lot of shimmying around Emmitt, thinking that this would be a repeat of their bolero where Cheryl just did a lot of dancing around him. But once they got into the routine a little more, I thought he did a pretty good amount of moving himself, and there actually was a considerable amount of samba content in this routine (you listening, Val?) Could have done without the giant inflatable parrots, but hey, we can’t always get what we want ;-)
3.) Kirstie & Maks – Technically, I think it was the best routine Kirstie’s done so far this season, but I just ended up feeling kind of “meh” about it – probably because both Kirstie & Maks looked uncharacteristically cheerless in it. Seriously, between the black costumes and their intense, focused expressions, I thought they were quickstepping at a funeral. Did Mrs. Robinson die at the end of The Graduate? I’m confused :-P Guess after I heard what song they were dancing to, I was expecting this dance to be as camp as Christmas – but it was just too tame. I think she started off strong and had a good frame, and then maybe got a little bungled up on the bouncing sections, but overall I liked the choreography. Just wish they would have remembered to have fun with it :-P If we were basing this week’s elim solely on this one dance, I’d say Kirstie should probably be a bit worried – but since she’s got the team dance (and next week’s dances) to give her a boost, I wouldn’t be too worried…yet.
4.) Kelly & Val – Anyone else think they may have phoned it in on this samba, given how stressed and busy they were showing Kelly to be in the reheasal package? :-( I don’t feel like Kelly or Val really got 100% into this routine, and for the first time since week 2, I saw Kelly get a little bit intimidated and unsure of herself out on the floor. She also seemed a little wobbly, and I saw some funky arms & legs…a few “Bambi on Ice” moments. I could have done without all of the touchy-feely-sexy-ooh-look-at-how-much-chemistry-we-have stuff at the beginning, and I would have liked a little more meat & potatoes samba in this samba, but that kinda goes without saying. Len & I were surprisingly like-minded in regards to tonight’s show :-P But again, I have to wonder if Kelly & Val had a rough week between her work schedule and the team dance rehearsal, and maybe knew they were kind of half-assing it – because neither one looked very surprised or upset by the critiques or scores they got. Perhaps they took a calculated risk in a week they knew wouldn’t matter too much? If I were Kelly, I would be slightly worried after this routine – for the simple reason that it seemed to really expose her weaknesses.
Thoughts on Team “Call Me Maybe”: As I said on Twitter, this routine was so stinkin’ cute :-) But with a song like that, can you go any other route except cute? :-P I thought the theme was genius: it fit the mood of the song perfectly, capitalized on the celebs strengths (3 girls with cheerleading skills and one guy that is just cool…and hot ;-) ), and made for some cute costumes and scenery. Loved the stepping portion at the beginning with the guys; thought the group sections were a nice combination of freestyle moves and enough proper ballroom to please Len – they were also sufficiently synchronized, given that some of the moves (like the leap frog over their partners) are hard to really do 100% in synch. I also thought the individual sections were nicely reflective of each partnership – Sabrina got to be sassy with Louis, Shawn & Derek got to be fun & cheesy, Melissa got to be “pretty” and move smoothly with Tony, and Apolo & Karina got to make up for their hip-hop mishap last week :-) At the end, I was left smiling and feeling proud of them – they could have gone totally crazy and gone for shock value rather than technique, but they managed to throw it a lot of real dancing along with a great deal of entertainment value. I would be pissed at CAI giving them a half-point shy of a perfect 30, but we all know she’s saving her 10 paddle virginity for Team Gangnam Style this week. :::eye roll::: Oh well – at least they can only hope to get a half point more than Shawn’s team, tops. That’s good enough for me ;-)
So what did you guys think of tonight’s dances? Be sure to keep an eye out for any spoilers we might post about tomorrow night’s show…and avert your eyes accordingly, if you want to be surprised 8-)
Apolo Ohno warns that he and Karina Smirnoff’s costumes tonight will be “hilarious” and “rediculous”, but, he’s excited for their new dance. See why below and why their music “speaks” to him.
Going into this week and the following weeks, this has reignited a new passion and a new creative interest in her mind, as far as how she choreographs her dances, which I pay for daily, because she makes them very, very difficult.
There’s no elimination this week, but we’ll still be judged on these dances and they’re going to be cumulative with next week’s dance. This week is “Guilty Pleasures Week.” We’re doing Rick James’s “Give It to Me Baby,” which is awesome American funk. There are hilarious, ridiculous outfits.
I’m wearing a silk, leopard print shirt with white pants and white shoes. It’s very funky and old school. I’m trying to figure out how to do a big afro, but obviously my hair does not work that way, so we’re going to play with it.
The dance is the samba, the dance I got my first perfect score on, during week five with Julianne. So, for me, it’s significant. Now I want to show my true colors. Now I really want to bring it all out and lay it all on the line. I just want to have fun, play the theatrical role, play the moment and just really go out there and live it.
I want to show people why I love this song and why it speaks to me. This song is a true guilty pleasure, it’s hilarious. And if you watch the music video, it’s even funnier. Karina and I have been trying to watch it as much as we can.
You can read more at People.com. Bring it and “live it”, Apolo!! You can do it!!
Also, keep your thoughts with Karina. Here is some back stage footage from last night as she got some shots in her neck. Ouch!
Ahhh, good ol’ Henry…my favorite paparazzo, since he always seems so preoccupied with what the celebs & pros have eaten on a particular day :-P He was posted up outside the reheasal studio last night, and got some footage (and a few words) with the cast as they arrived for team dance rehearsals late into the night:
First impressions? Kirstie can do the Bewitched nose twitch really well, Kelly doesn’t like to be interrupted when she’s on her phone, Karina looks cute in her cut-off “Team Apolo” shirt, and Shawn totally looks like Chelsie from behind now. Interested to see how these team dances pan out – I heard that rehearsals went incredibly late into the night. Possibly later than any other team dance rehearsal in seasons prior. We’ll keep you posted if we hear anything else!
P.S. Rumor has it that Vogue is back from vacay today. To quote Madea, “Hallelujer!” I’ve missed her and I know Heidi has too. Let’s give her a warm welcome back, k? ;-)
Well, it was an interesting night. Sorta. But….well, not really. :-)
They put three couples in jeopardy: Apolo/Karina, Bristol/Mark and Kirstie/Maks. Now when they put the three lowest couples in jeopardy, I automatically think the low score is going home. I don’t know why. There is no rule. I’VE NEVER BEEN SO HAPPY TO BE WRONG. :-) Buh bye, Bristol. Nice knowin’ ya. Now don’t ever darken our dance floor again.
How did us wimen do?? Sans Vogue (she’s back tomorrow at some point – thank you baby Jesus), we said:
Heidi said: Kirstie going home with a second choice of Sabrina
Courtney said: Sabrina going home, second choice being Bristol
We were both wrong, but Court got closer. She’s more optimistic than I am. :-D
I told you guys not to worry about Apolo. And I have to say, Gilles ego will be his downfall in the team dance. Crappy picks. Derek hated the song, but I think Gilles gave him exactly the team he wanted. ;-)
I know most of us are pretty absorbed in speculating about who will get sent home tonight, but I think there’s something else going down tonight that could be a game-changer: the selection of the teams for the team dances. Let’s explore, shall we? :-)
As Tom stated last night, the two cumulative highest scorers (those who have amassed the most total points so far this season) will be appointed as team captains, and will be alternating picking other couples for their teams. In this case, it will be Gilles & Shawn. If history is any indicator, I’m guessing the highest scorer (in this case, Gilles) will get first pick. Semi-interesting side note: prior to this week’s dances, Sabrina was actually in the lead for cumulative points – she had .5 points more than Gilles, who in turn had 1.5 points more than Shawn. Given that Sabrina danced before Gilles last night, in order to stay at least tied for the top 2, he would have had to get at least a 36 on his Bollywood routine. To break the tie & edge Sabrina out of the top 2, he would have had to get at least a 36.5. And to surpass Shawn to secure the top spot (and the first pick in the team dance), he would have had to score at least a 38.5. And even more interesting: had Shawn actually gotten a perfect score, Gilles would have needed at least a 39 to maintain his high scorer status. Draw your own conclusions, but that 39.5 for a sloppy Bollywood routine doesn’t seem so ridiculous if you take into account that they may have wanted to ensure that Gilles would get first pick in the team dance (for whatever reason). Just food for thought. ;-)
So we’ve got Gilles & Shawn as team captains, with Gilles (probably) picking first. The interesting thing about the team dances this time around is that they’re freestyles – so we may see some picking going on that would seem unsual in a regular season (with a team dance like the cha-cha, tango, or paso doble), but makes sense this season, given that the captains will (or at least SHOULD) also be taking into consideration which pros are good at freestyle choreography. For that reason, if Bristol is still around, I could actually see her being one of the first ones picked – not necessarily for her dance skills, but for Mark’s freestyle skills. I think Derek may be willing to bite the bullet and have a weaker-dancing celeb on his team (hey, he managed to make Hope look semi-presentable in the season 13 team paso!), if it means getting Mark’s creative energy to work with.
Something else that could come into play when choosing the teams? Ego. :-P Gilles seems to have a large one; Shawn seems to lack one altogether. I have to wonder if Gilles would be willing to set aside any bad blood he has with Mark (and possibly Apolo) and pick one of them for his team…and I think both would be very strategic picks. But my gut tells me he’s going to continue being a bit of a diva, and may snub those two in favor of someone fairly neutral who hasn’t yet called him out on his bullsh*t – possibly Melissa. I also wonder how much the influence of Gilles & Shawn’s pro partners is going to affect their picks – once again, I wonder how much Gilles’ ego is going to come into play, and whether that will nullify any persuading Peta might be trying to do. The only pick Peta might have any hope of securing is Kirstie & Maks, methinks…since Gilles seems to be the one driving the bus in that partnership :-P I think Shawn, on the other hand, is going to listen to Derek and any strategy he might have, and won’t let any interpersonal issues with the other cast members (if she even has any) influence her decision-making. Very similar to Derek’s philosophy :-P
I’m having a hard time shaking the feeling that, given what I’ve mentioned above, we may end up with one team comprised of the Chmerkovskiy Faction (Gilles & Peta, Melissa & Tony, Kelly & Val, Kirstie & Maks…picked in that order) and the other team comprised of the Hough-Ballas Alliance & some “independent contractors” (Shawn & Derek, Bristol & Mark, Apolo & Karina, and Emmitt & Cheryl…feeling fairly certain that Sabrina will be leaving us tonight). If that’s the case (or at least comes close to how things will shake out), then I’m almost convinced that Shawn’s team is just gonna mop the floor with Gilles’ team. Shawn’s team already has an edge – they have Derek, who remains the 7-time undefeated champ in the team dance. Poo-pooh that if you wish, but he has delivered a win every season that he’s been in the team dance…I doubt that’s just a coincidence. If I were any of the other couples (besides Gilles & Peta and Shawn & Derek), I’d be crossing my fingers that I’d get picked for Shawn’s team, because that’s a pretty sure bet. It’s not guaranteed safety from elimination, but it sure doesn’t hurt, either :-P
So how do you guys think the team dance selection will play out tonight? Do you have a “dream team” you’d like to see? Or a “nightmare team”, for that matter? :-P In the meantime, just contemplate the following: in a battle royale of dance skills, which of the below candidates wins?
…or this one? :-D
I rest my case. ;-)
Well. As Courtney mentioned, the abundance of points handed out means that the margins are shrunk a bit over all. While that might spell disaster for a few pairs, it also HELPS Apolo tremendously. Why, do you ask?? Well, he has to do next to nothing – like, maybe, take off his shirt – to get past a couple of the lesser known females. Throw in the minor disaster in the middle of their dance and poor, weepy Karina and you have sympathy votes out the wazoo. I saw you people in the comments saying you had to throw some votes his way. That’s how the sympathy vote works. Even without it, I doubt Apolo is in any danger. Let me tell you why…here’s how the leader board stacks up:
The Judges Scores and Percentages
Ya see? Yeah, Apolo is near the bottom, but see how close he is in points to the people above him? The points seem like more, but look at the percentages. Between Apolo and Kelly there is LESS THAN one percentage point. That’s what happens when so many freakin’ points are handed out. Now, maybe I will turn out to be way wrong here, and really with the way this season is, I wouldn’t be surprised – but I don’t think he’s going anywhere. And maybe I’m in denial. :-) Cuz I love me some Apolo. Not as much as I love me some Derek (he played the drums!! :::swoon::: I’ve always been a sucker for musicians) but still. :-)
So, what about our bottom dwellers?? Hmmmm….I guess we find out once again this week what their competition is made of. Really, again, it’s just as much about the other ladies and their staying power as it is about Bristol and Kirstie. Kirstie is the low woman on the totem pole – what all does she need to survive yet again?? She needs ONE of the following:
– Kirstie needs 6,220 more votes per million votes cast than Bristol to stick around, OR;
– Kirstie needs 14,000 more votes per million votes cast than Apolo, OR;
– Kirstie needs 17,110 more votes per million votes cast than Sabrina, OR;
– Kirstie needs 18,670 more votes per million votes cast than Emmitt, OR;
– Kirstie needs 21,775 more votes per million votes cast than Melissa, OR;
– Kirstie needs 23,330 more votes per million votes cast than Kelly, OR;
– Kirstie needs 29,600 more votes per million votes cast than Shawn/Gilles. Read more..
This time from Access Hollywood. Again, haven’t had time to watch. :-) But why am I not surprised that Access Hollywood is obsessed with Bristol Palin when they have a guy named Bush working for them?? Bristol and Karina – controversy only on that site. Oh, and a little Paula. :-)
Like the title says…On the Red Carpet with George Pennachio. I’m posting and running this morning – no time to watch them all so I’ll guess and post one that might be annoying and one or two that might not be annoying. It’s a game. You can tell me how I did. :-) Oh, and click the link to see all the videos.
Annoying – LVA and Sabrina
MORE Annoying – Gilles
Maybe annoying if they are still going over the top with the smolder…maybe not. You tell me. :-)
Not likely annoying – Shawn and Derek
A long Paparazzi video that has lots of people in it. :-)
Well, this blasted non-ballroom (save for the mambo, and sorta-kinda the bolero) night played out just about like I thought it would: the hapless judges (aided and abbetted by the perpetually out-to-lunch Paula) kind of copped out on giving any seriously harsh scores, likely for the simple reason that they just didn’t know enough about the dances themselves to actually score properly. The end result was some pretty general overscoring, and perhaps a tiny bit of relative underscoring. But what worries me is that even though the spread may seem pretty big this week, more total points = smaller margins between points…meaning that it’s going to require fewer votes for those at the bottom to catch up with the rest of the pack. And it makes me nervous for another “shock” elimination…but this time, I think it has the potential to be truly shocking. 8-O Let’s get on with it, shall we?
1.) Shawn & Derek – Best routine of the night, without a doubt – great, PROPER mambo choreography, and flawless execution. I think these two may have had the toughest dance to contend with, for the simple reason that mambo has been done on the show before as a regular dance – and it has been done far more than any of the other dances on the list. Add to that the constant pressure of the all-star season? If they had a bit of an off-week, I wouldn’t have blamed them. But luckily, they absolutely KILLED this mambo – great tricks, a good amount of meat & potatoes choreography, and best of all – Shawn pulled off the “sassy” and sexy without a hitch, and looked great doing it. :-) Very impressed with how she’s matured since her original season. If I REALLY had to nitpick, I would say that it seemed like Shawn was sliding a little bit when coming out of her turns – very slight bobble, but it made me wonder if the floors tonight were a little slick – and could also be the cause of other snafus tonight. Anyway, I think if they gave that hot mess of a Bollywood number that Gilles crapped out a 39.5, then this should have been a 42. But Len, ever the fuddy-duddy, withheld that last half a point that would have put them at the top of the leaderboard. Oh well – luckily it matters even less this week :-P
2.) Kelly & Val – Like almost all of their other dances this season, this came out far better than I would have anticipated – even if these two were kinda giving me the creeps with all of their brooding in the background all night. :-P Was it truly “contemporary”? Meh…it had elements of contemporary, and it came far closer to contemporary than Emmitt did to bolero or Bristol did to rock ‘n’ roll. But it was a pretty dance, and I do feel like they injected some emotion into it – which is really how contemporary came to be in the first place: ballet with emotion. Kelly had some nice extensions and seemed to really connect to the dance…and really, Val did too, as much as he may have hated the style they got. And he did get a few brownie points from me for calling Cheryl the b-word on national television, for all to hear :-P I think they may have gotten a little out-of-synch on the side-by-side sections, and I must confess that I didn’t really understand the purpose of the platform they climbed onto. But overall, a very nice effort for a dance that neither party was particularly jazzed to have…and I’m sure we’ll be hearing buzz about this one for the rest of the week. ;-) Read more..