All-stars Deliver Four-star Performances in Week 8 of DWTS

The seven remaining couples paid tribute to U.S. veterans last night, with performances that celebrated both the sacrifice and strength of our military. Army veteran and former DWTS champ J.R. Martinez watched from the front row, joined by more servicemen in the audience. In Army-inspired green, Kirstie and Maks danced a beautiful and poignant Viennese waltz to “Hallelujah.” I agree with Len, who called it Kirstie’s best dance.

Later, French-born Gilles Marini took a moment to say, “67 years ago America came to free my country,” and offered his sincere thanks. This is one of the reasons I love this show. So much media time can be spent on spoiled celebs behaving badly, it’s always refreshing to hear the stars express their gratitude in such a heartfelt way.

The couples amped up the fun factor for their second routines, this time adding dance troupe members or previously eliminated pros to perform as trios. Kirstie began her paso doble with Maks and Tristan in dramatic fashion, sporting huge white wings and a gauzy gown. Unfortunately once all three dancers had shed their wings, the routine just never took off. The judges admired the theme, but called it “surreal” and “sloppy.” Ouch.

Dance of the Night:  Shawn, Derek, and Mark’s samba trio for the win. The choreography was definitely on the wild and tribal side, but combined with classic samba steps, it was the most exciting and original dance of the season so far. Carrie Ann applauded them for taking a risk, and Bruno said their performance gave him jungle fever. True to form, Len criticized the pros for being self-indulgent and not having enough content. He warned, “Shawn, if you go home tomorrow, don’t blame me. Blame those two.”  Not enough samba? You be the judge.

One to watch: Melissa Rycroft is unstoppable right now. First, she and Tony danced a picture-perfect quickstep to “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy of Company B,” which Bruno likened to watching Ann Miller and Gene Kelly in “On The Town.” Len continued with the nostalgic high praise by declaring, “that was the bee’s knees.” Later in the show, Melissa delivered an equally impressive, and uncharacteristically tough paso doble in the trio dance. Bruno dubbed her a “whip-cracking queen bee.” That’s two bee references in one night. With two perfect 30s, honey, you’re going all the way!

Best moment:  Apolo ziplining onto the dancefloor before his tango. I think Len said it best: “You’re my hero.” Of course, Apolo is also my hero for wearing two sleeveless costumes last night. I love it when I can get into the gun show for free.  Thanks, ABC!

Quotable quote: “Welcome to Delirium with the Stars.” – Tom Bergeron, on Kirstie’s giggling fit during the presentation of her second set of scores. He may also have been referring to her comment, “I thought we might get the first 10.5 of the season.”

Oh no you di-n’t:  Anyone who’s seen “Grease” knows that the lyrics to “Greased Lightning” are a little on the raunchy side, especially for a family show like DWTS.  So imagine my shock during Apolo’s jive trio, when the Harold Wheeler Singers belted out, “you know I ain’t braggin,’ she’s a real p***y wagon.” I think I blacked out for a split second.  Oh well, producers,  I guess there are worse things you could do.

Tune in tonight for a double elimination.

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