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"Dancing With the Stars" - Season 8, Week 7
by Eric's Recap Journal (dork_wesley)
at April 28th, 2009 (09:36 am)

I was out of town last week, so I'm working totally from the videos ABC posted to YouTube.

Competition progresses, my scoring gets tougher.

Chuck & Julianne: "All I want is a 9!" he shouts. Pajama outfits, she confessed he had no real input. Samba. Totally cops double feel at start. Excellent technique, good start to bounce action, needs to use legs to create more. Great focus on her. Good spot roll and great leading. Liked his focus and feeling for the music, liked their connection and chemistry. 9.0/10.0

Gilles & Cheryl: Happy to see him with a Smooth, finally. Trouble with making things too Latin (sharp, aggressive) so they get synchronized swimming coach... aka excuse for him to be in swimsuit. Viennese Waltz. Intense and serious face right from start. Nice job with the stretching and fluid arms. Pretty good frame, but head position needs work. Never cracks a smile. Footwork mixed, height covers lack of drive. 8.5/10.0

Lil'Kim & Derek: Challenge is actually to "tone down Kim's sexiness", "balance of sexy & sweet". Derek tough on his choreography, frustrated with self. Rumba. She starts solo, forward walks need more Cuban motion, but does it better in hold and other figures. Nice amount of softness in her movement, and good balance, except some shake in a tough stretched arabesque. Good, but kind of flat. 9.0/10.0

LT & Edyta: She has a fur-trimmed coat. He's this week's big traveler, and takes her to driving range, doing a great impression of her when she's not good. Looking for the graceful for him. Waltz. He does some good work softening up, but has no rise & fall or sway. She loses coat for a super-flowy dress that keeps sweeping up over her head. Dead arms when he's apart, loses balance. Flat. 6.5/10.0

In audience: Steve-O.

Melissa & Tony: My video doesn't have the rehearsal footage. Argentine Tango. Footwork impecable, even at fastest speed. Fabulous follow, excellent leg action. Slips into and out of lifts and other tricks easily, swivels are totally on point. Wonderful intensity and great chemistry, really good connection throughout the routine. Notice her almost collapse at the end, holding her side and totally breathless. Now we now why. 9.5/10.0

Shawn & Mark: She's another big traveler this week, missing the group dance rehearsal, doing things late night between cities. Cha Cha. He's totally gone Michael Jackson, maybe just a bit too showy over her. Great rhythm and musicality from her, good strong legwork as usual, nice sharp footwork. Good improvement in her solo and side-by-side stuff. 8.5/10.0

Ty & Chelsie: He likes the Smooth, since he can stay in closed and he's "good at holding on", naturally. Feels more like Chelsie a daughter, so in comes Jewel (who likes him because he's not "schmoozy and suave"). Waltz. Surprise, another country song. Suspended walk at beginning not as good as thought. Solid frame, good movement, some nice flow starting. Camera man sleeping at one point. 7.5/10.0

Results show.

Guest #1: Celtic Woman, performing a version of "You Raise Me Up". Just like all the times you've seen them on PBS: sweet, pretty, lyrical, nice harmony. Dancing are "Show Dance Champions" Eric Luna & Georgia Ambarian. It's a nice mix of big, impressive lifts and some actual dancing, letting the tricks come naturally instead of the guy just being a forklift.

Guest #2: Natasha Bedingfield, performing "Soulmate". Dancing are shirt-open Dmitry (who's pretty much a fixture here now) & Lacey, showing off some pretty nice lift work of their own. He's doing a great job, she still mugs her face too much for my taste.

Guest #3: Burn the Floor, (opening on Broadway this summer, which makes me very happy) five couples from the cast performing to an awesome Propellerheads song, "History Repeating" featuring a great Shirley Bassey vocal. They're all spectacular, which I expected having watched my VHS of the show a million times. Lots of great tricks and rock solid technique, even one couple weaving Smooth in all the Latin. Constantly moving, changing shapes and partners and formations.

Because this season didn't include enough gimmicks, they're now introducing a "professional competition", featuring six pro dancers (3 male, 3 female) who are vying for one guaranteed spot on this fall season's roster. I'm guessing they keep emphasizing guaranteed to let them add whoever they want. They're starting by pairing them off by couples and having all three dance tonight.

Genya & Snow: Genya Mazo is Alec Mazo's brother, and pretty much dances exactly like him, except without the immediate charisma. Snow Urbin was on an early SYTYCD season and we hated her, because she'd always park herself in front of the camera instead of actually interacting with her fellow contestants. Their Rumba is technically very solid, but there's not an ounce of chemistry or connection happening.

Mayo & Anna: Mayo Alanen is a Smooth Champion, and self-professed "all-American boy", who comes off very personable. Anna Demidova is a US Ballroom champ and younger sister of huge champ Katusha Demidova, and she calls herself "disciplined". Their practice though, is goofy and fun. Their Waltz is really gorgeous and flowing, with a lot of feeling for the music. Good performance in it.

Brent & Afton: Brent Borbon is (Filipino!) a dancer who's all about chemistry with his partner (yay!). Afton Delgrosso is Ashly Delgrosso's sister, and very much shares her cuteness and charm. Both of them are performing in Le Rève in Vegas, where apparently, they dance in an inch of water the whole time. Yikes. Lots of chemistry and great connection between them, very sharp and polished. Best of all, personality.

At the moment, I'm Team Anybody But Genya And Snow.

Eliminated: Lawrence Taylor & Edyta Sliwinska. Apprently, LT's discomfort with performing was apparent to everyone, as Tom apparently calls him the "worst actor" in the show's history. I'm sure he's relieved to go back to his golfing. I respect the guy for his football accomplishments, but he just wasn't putting everything into it the way Warren Sapp or even Emmitt Smith did. Plus, now less Edyta.

See you next week.


Posted by: wiccabuffy (wiccabuffy)
Posted at: April 28th, 2009 05:26 pm (UTC)
Dance - Dirty Dancing

I liked the smooth couple best, I guess because we see so little of it on the show...

Posted by: Eric's Recap Journal (dork_wesley)
Posted at: April 28th, 2009 06:01 pm (UTC)

They were really great, yeah.

Posted by: Indy Jan (indyjan)
Posted at: April 30th, 2009 03:00 am (UTC)
Sleeping Beauty & Phillip Dance/Kiss

Well all my votes went for Mayo last week and this week. There is just something about him that comes across as very charismatic.

This week Chuck and Julianne went home and, IMO, it should have been Melissa because she couldn't perform, but she had a ton of call in votes. That being the case, it should have been Ty going home. Ty is the most improved, but I feel he has gone as far as he can.

Shawn is cute and technical, but I get nothing from her, even though I love Mark.

I love Derek, but do not get anything from Lil' Kim. She is good, has the technical ability, but nothing more, IMO.

I love Melissa and Tony, so I'm glad that she was saved. If she is well, she has the ability to go to the finals and maybe taking it all.

My fav is Gilles and Cheryl though. I have always loved Cheryl. She's a great teacher. She has the ability to bring out the extra special "something" that is needed to win. Gilles can do the dances, ballroom and latin. I think it will be him and Melissa in the finals.

Next week should be interesting because they are doing two dances.

Posted by: Eric's Recap Journal (dork_wesley)
Posted at: April 30th, 2009 02:19 pm (UTC)

Mayo is really fun to watch, and the show needs more Smooth specialists.

I was really hoping that Ty would be eliminated.

Cheryl I've never been fond of personally, but she's clearly an effective coach.

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