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Author Topic: Dancing With The Stars - Season 8, Week 10 (Semifinals)
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Icon 1 posted May 11, 2009 20:49            Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
The penultimate round is upon us, and, once again, it's a two-round affair, ballroom and Latin...and, after last week's shocker elimination, anything can happen! At least everyone made it down the stairs all right, following a pro demo to "Should I Stay Or Should I Go"! Then we get some clips of the dances that the stars thought were their best ballroom and Latin routines from the previous weeks...Melissa's foxtrot (Week 3) and perfect-30 samba (last week); Gilles' foxtrot (from last week) and paso doble (Week 5); both of Shawn's dances last week, the quickstep and the paso doble; and Ty's quickstep (Week 2) and Lindy hop (Week 4). Fair enough, on with the show!

BALLROOM ROUND

Melissa and Tony nearly nailed the Viennese waltz last week, and did nail the samba...but are looking to score at least one more flawless routine this week! It's crunch time, 'cos anything can happen! The cha-cha-cha may give them the chance...but they need to do a quickstep first, and Melissa is seriously intimidated! They're concentrating on her feet, as we know Len will watch them like a hawk! The quickstep, to "I've Got Rhythm," was full of energy and very light, but I don't know...her feet still didn't seem to come down right on the heel. A good reaction from the audience, though. Len enjoyed the musicality and phrasing, and said "The feet are much improved!" Bruno called it good, but not as exhilarating as it could have been. Carrie-Ann agreed; it was nice and pretty, but she seemed to have no "connection" in the dance.
Scores: CAI 9, LG 10, BT 9, Total 28

Their foxtrot was heartwarming, but, as for Gilles and Cheryl's rumba! Not so much. This week, there can't be any mistakes, as he headsinto this week. His waltz needs to look effortless, sophisticated and classy, and, as for his salsa, "Now that Lil'Kim is gone, someone has to shake their booty!" Cheryl brings Jonathan Roberts in to help him develop the image he needs for the waltz; Gilles thought it was a big help. The waltz, to "Come Away With me," looked beautiful, with everything perfectly in place...except that Sabrina still felt he looked down too much, and his head was down too much. "That is how you start the race for the finals!" exulted Bruno. "You looked like a matinee idol! Irresistably romantic!" Carrie-Ann called it "breathtaking...it took us to a land of fantasy!" "I'm giving you a sitting-down standing ovation!" said Len. And this can only mean...
Scores: CAI 10, LG 10, BT 10, PERFECT 30!!! (3rd of the season, and 2nd for Gilles)

While their paso scored high, the break of the hold in the quickstep may have cost Shawn and Mark a perfect 30 last week...and Shawn would like to get that back! Their jive will be fast and technical..."too many steps, not enough time!" she laments. Meantime, the Argentine tango has lots of lifts, which Shawn finds it tough to deal with! "Santa Maria" is the music for the Argentine tango, but it's intense, looking like a gangster movie! She's really working hard here, especially in the lift...and my reaction was: Woah! Carrie-Ann had worried about the emotional content...but "YOU DELIVERED!" She added, "Precision is your middle name!" Len said she danced with great maturity and intensity, calling it her best yet. "It's Catherine Zeta Shawn!" said Bruno. "You got it coming, BIG TIME!"
Scores: CAI 10, LG 10, BT 10, PERFECT 30!!! (4th of the season; Shawn's 1st)

Ty and Chelsie landed in the bottom two last week, but the fans rallied to give him another shot! Now it's payback time, as Ty introduces Chelsie to the mechanical bull! The samba will be about him having fun and shaking his butt, but he calls it "more like a pain in the ass"! As for the Viennese waltz, he has to be smooth, effortless, and graceful...and he admits his chances aren't great, but he owes it to the fans to give it his best! Their Viennese waltz, to "Tuesday's Gone," showed off Ty as the perfect gentleman! "I can't believe my eyes!" said Sabrina. He seemed a little rushed in one of the spins, but boy, what a dance! "No one's worked harder than you, tried more than you, struggled more than you!" said Len, who noted a couple of bobbles, but called it "fabulous." "We like you, but..." said Bruno, and then got into an argument with Len: "He nearly dropped her!" Carrie-Ann liked how he got the whole room supporting him, but "you struggled, this wasn't your best dance!" And even more arguments broke out.
Scores: CAI 8, LG 9, BT 8, Total 25

After the ballroom round, Gilles and Shawn are tied for the lead, while Ty brings up the rear. But the contest isn't over!

(continued in next post)

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Icon 1 posted May 11, 2009 21:19            Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
(Continued from previous post)

LATIN ROUND

In this round, the "intro segment" takes us inside the past lives of our competitors, and, for Melissa and Tony, we're off to Dallas! Tracing her early life, through becoming a Dallas Cowboys cheerleader, to going on The Bachelor, winning, and then getting dumped on national TV, it's apparent that she never gives up, she never quits. In the cha-cha-cha, to "Save The Last Dance For Me," she works those hips and shows no pain in the lifts, for a very entertaining routine! Bruno likes his cha-cha-cha's at "full thrust," and this one, to him, didn't sustain the energy. Carrie-Ann liked how emotional she got, but said she couldn't decide how big to make her footwork. Len liked it, but not as much as he was hoping to, calling it "lackluster."
Scores: CAI 9, LG 9, BT 9, Total 27

Gilles and Cheryl are up next, and we travel to Cannes, in the south of France! Gilles grew up in the middle of the city, son of a baker, from whom he got his work ethic. He still had a natural rhythm, practicing Michael Jackson's dance moves as a boy. Now he's transitioning from modeling to acting, living the American Dream. And, to "I Know You Want Me (Calle Ocho)," he delivers a sizzling salsa! He shakes the maracas, and shakes a few other things! That one was right on the money, I thought! Carrie-Ann cheered, then called it, "Gilles Marini at his best!" Len said, "I am almost speechless! I wish I had an '11' paddle!" Leave it to Bruno, though, to deliver the coup de grace: "Lil'Kim is alive and well, and in your pants! You deserve to be in the finals!"
Scores: CAI 10, LG 10, BT 10, PERFECT 30!!! (5th of the season, 3rd for Gilles...and the first perfect 60!)

With Shawn and Mark, we begin her story in Des Moines, Iowa, where Shawn showed gymnastic ability from a very young age. Her coach, Liang Chow, said she never gives up...even when she has the flu, as she did in Beijing the day she competed on the balance beam and scored Olympic gold! And whether it's the Olympics or DWTS, Shawn is a serious competitor! She had fun with the jive, to "Reet Petite," and executed the spins with precision! They finished up with a cute "triple 10 paddle" ending, too! Len liked its speed, feeling, and fun, but thought there was too much "messing about" and not enough traditional jive. "I like you when you go wild!" said Bruno, who thought it looked maybe more like a Lindy hop, but she sold it. Carrie-Ann loved watching it, but thought she lost a little steam towards the end.
Scores: CAI 9, LG 8, BT 9, Total 26

Finally, for Ty and Chelsie, we head to Stevensville, Texas, where young Ty, 4th-generation cowboy, never wanted to be anything but a cowboy. He started riding calves at age 2, and never looked back. He is determined and focused, and most of his friends thought he wouldn't make it past the first week! But he's giving it all he's got, showing everyone he can run with the big dogs! The samba, to "Concrete and Clay," showed he could keep up, but maybe his hips were a bit stiff...wait one! Where did that shake come from? And that one? They sure finished cute, too! "You've got Brazilian determination!" said Bruno. "You threw in everything but the kitchen sink!" He did note some lost footing though. Carrie-Ann nominated him as Most Valuable Player of Season 8. Len, though, said, "In ballroom, you're Arthur Murray, but in Latin, you're Murray-in-a-hurry!"
Scores: CAI 8, LG 7, BT 8, Total 23

Gilles leads in the Latin round, and in Week 10 overall with 60 points; Ty trails both, with a total score of 48. But the viewers could save Ty again! Will they? Can't tell you yet, as I won't know till tomorrow night!

-30-

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Icon 1 posted May 12, 2009 21:12            Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Whoever gets eliminated tonight, I can tell you one thing...it's gonna hurt! We won't worry abotu that for awhile, though, as we start off with a musical number, Raphael Saddiq with his hit "100 Yard Dash," who gets the crowd moving! Then we recap:

- Ty's waltz sparks a judges' battle! But he redeems himself with the samba!
- Melissa's feet improve in the quickstep! But her cha-cha-cha is underwhelming!
- Shawn scores her first "thirty" with an Argentine tango! But her jive was lacking!
- Gilles, with a romantic waltz and a spicy samba, takes home the first "perfect 60"!

The encore for the week is Shawn and Mark's dynamic Argentine tango...which doesn't lose any impact with a day's delay. (Dude, she's 17! Here's Chris Hansen to say "Why don't you have a seat over there.") Then we get an analysis of the final four, courtesy of Season 5 Champion Helio Castroneves, Season 7 Champion Brooke Burke, and Season 2 Champion Drew Lachey.

Wait, didn't we have a pro competition? Sadly, Afton DelGrosso got eliminated (awww!), but the remaining two would-be pros will pair up with existing pros to choreograph a ballroom and a Latin routine! Mayo Alanen is paired with Kym Johnson, while Anna Demidova takes on "bad boy of the dance floor" Maksim Chmerkovskiy!

BALLROOM ROUND

Mayo and Kym come out strong with a tango, which is very precise; Mayo uses that height well! (He kind of reminds me of Neil Patrick Harris, a bit.) And he sure has the structure down pat! Len said, "That's what I love about ballroom dancing!" referring to Mayo's routine. Bruno liked how Mayo framed Kym, and said, "Kym, now you've got somebody with longer legs than you!" Carrie-Ann thought the choreography was dynamic and traditional...but wants him to bring his personality out more.

Quickstep is the order of the night for Anna and Maks, who came out with a big dynamic start! (Sabrina saw the pink boa around Anna's neck, and thought of The Woz!) It was energetic, fast, and fun, and ended in a big finish! Bruno called it magnificent, radiant, and lightning fast: "You put the technique on display, and you sold it!" "I think any celebrity would be lucky to have you!" said Carrie-Ann, who said Anna even managed to outshine Maks a bit (no easy feat). Len praised her elegance and maturity, and how she brought the best out in all her partners.

We break for a Samantha timewaster, then the Macy's Stars of Dance "Design-A-Dance" takes the stage! Apparently, people have been voting for the various pieces of this dance all through this season, and the result turns out to be a quickstep, featuring Lacey, Julianne, Mark, and Derek, to "It Don't Mean A Thing If It ain't Got That Swing"! And WHAT a dance! Lots of gimmickery, but it hung together and it was VERY entertaining. And now...

LATIN ROUND

To "Shake Your Groove Thing," Mayo and Kym do a cha-cha-cha...Mayo is dressed like Travolta, but does moves Travolta never dreamed of! This really brought out his personality! Carrie-Ann thought he was a wonderful dancer, just wondered if he was versatile enough. Len thought the choreography was great, but his tango was superior; this one lacked some rhythm and "wow." Bruno also remarked that Mayo was stronger at ballroom than Latin, and cautioned him against taking too many risks.

Anna and Maks take on the samba, and it was a sassy routine in which Maks let it all hang out...except at the end, where he gets put in a corner while Anna finished off with a solo! (Nobody puts Maks in a corner...usually. [Smile] ) "If you're not back next season," quipped Len, "I'll show me bum in the supermarket!" (AAAHHH!!! MY EYES!!! THE GOGGLES...THEY DO NOTHING!!!) Bruno called her a "stunner" at both ballroom and Latin. Carrie-Ann said, "I want to see more of you! I'd love to have you come back!"

All right, America gets a chance to vote on the future pro...but meanwhile, we finally have some finalists to reveal!

FINALIST: Gilles & Cheryl! I put him as odds-on favorite for the Cheesy Disco Ball Trophy.
FINALIST: Shawn & Mark! She gets one more chance to show off her stuff!

And now...the last elimination before the finals...

ELIMINATED: Ty & Chelsie! The Cinderella story is at an end...the cowboy is headed for the last roundup!

(Meanwhile Melissa & Tony are in...with a chance for her to win big on national TV, after she lost big!)

Ty says, "I got a whole new respect for these guys!" Tom says, "It's not about the steps, it's about the total package...and you two were it." Chelsie, for her part, thought she couldn't have asked for a better celebrity for her first DWTS outing. And Jewel had a request...for Ty to "do that shake thing" again!

So Ty rides off into the sunset...but Gilles, Shawn, and Melissa will be back for next week's grand finale! It's all down to one more round...and the Cheesy Disco Ball Trophy is up for grabs! Can't wait to see what happens next week! Stay tuned, True Believers!

-30-

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