Dancing With The Stars 13 – Week 9; Semi-Finals

One Sentence Summary:  We head into the semi-finals with two individual rounds of Latin Dances (One a mandatory Argentine Tango) and then a Cha Cha Relay.

Yeah, we wish it was Carson co-hosting too, Tom.

Our Thoughts:

Rachel:  I have no idea what a Cha Cha Relay means, but it sounds like something they would have done on Battle of The Sexes back in the day.  Yes, I’m showing my age… again.  All I know is that as we edge closer to the end, I am wanting Maks out more than Rob.  I know my partner will disagree with me strongly, but his arrogance is just too much for me to take.  I cannot even handle that smug smirk another week.  I have a friend who works in the ballroom industry who insists that Maks is a sweetheart. (She does acknowledge he hasn’t done himself any favors this season.)  I just don’t see it.  I really don’t.  I see glimpses of him being a cool dude but they are so few and far between that I think they’re for the cameras.  But I am excited for the Argentine Tango round.  It’s definitely my favorite dance of the bunch.  We’ll see who can pull off the super sexy and sultry dance.  I’m still Team J.R. all the way, so here’s hoping he rocks it!

Hope Solo

Hope and Maks dance the Paso Doble to "Can't Be Tamed" by Miley Cyrus

Hope has 13 anchors in her shoulder from an injury… Yikes.  Doesn’t even seem like you can fit 13 anythings in your shoulder.  So she gets a shot the size of an elephant tranquilizer to help numb the pain.  Yeow.  Oh look another dance where Maks tries to make Hope sultry and sexy.  This dance is not good.  She just looks so… awkward… when she tries to do the serious dances.  Honestly, I thought this song was “Can’t Be Saved” before I looked it up (Not the world’s biggest Miley fan), which would seem more apropos.  It’s driving me crazy that Len is suddenly pandering to her every time she’s up there, but he does say she lost control and finesse.  Bruno says it was unchained and untamed but lacked artistry.  Carrie Ann says she nailed the character of the dance but the hold was out of synch.  Brooke says we love Maks this week.  No, Brooke.  No, we don’t.

Score:  21

J.R. Martinez

J.R. and Karina dance the Paso Doble to "Theme from The Legend of Zorro" by James Horner

J.R. and Karina dance the Paso Doble to "Theme from The Legend of Zorro" by James Horner

Oh no!  J.R. twisted his ankle in rehearsal!  No, not J.R.!!!!  This makes me very sad.  I don’t want him to potentially be at risk for going home due to a bad ankle.  Hmm… This isn’t his best dance but it’s not bad for someone who’s injured, although he is limping again.  Ruh-roh.  Here’s hoping the judges pander to him too.  Bruno says the role play was great but the posture wasn’t quite there.  Carrie Ann gives him credit for attacking the dance with a hurt ankle, but she agrees the posture wasn’t there.  Len says this dance didn’t suit him.  It was more zero than Zorro.

Score:  23

Rob Kardashian

Rob & Cheryl dance the Samba to "I Go to Rio" by Pablo Cruise

Rob says he needs to be more of a man than J.R. this week.  Never ever ever will happen.  Seriously, the closer we get to the end, the more he bugs me.  And I couldn’t be more sick of hearing about his butt.  I do think he suffers from my disdain for all things Kardashian and it’s not even him necessarily… Well, yeah it is. Did he really just come in on a float? Ugh, he did a good job in his dance.  He actually is improving and it’s really ticking me off.  Oh look!  Bruce gets to sit with his wife in the front row this week.  Good for him.  Carrie Ann says Holy Cow it’s a booty booty booty.. and then I stopped listening.  Len said he started off “oh no” but he was all “yes” on the dance floor.  Bruno says once he starts shaking there’s no stopping him.  Carrie Ann gives him a 10… Grumble.

Score:  28

Ricki Lake

Ricki & Derek dance the Samba to "Jump in the Line" by Harry Belafonte

Another Ricki rehearsal and I still have nothing much to say.  I like her but there’s nothing all that interesting about her background scenes.  Oh my… She killed Big Bird, skinned him and made a costume with way too much illusion netting.  She did a great job with the dance even though I was partially blinded by the brightness of that outfit.  Derek really choreographs to her strengths.  Maks should take a lesson from him… mostly because it would be entertaining for me to watch that go down.  Len says no shtick, all dance… Fabulous fabulous fabulous.  Bruno says sizzling, hot, bright and brilliant.  Carrie Ann says she really paid attention to her shoulders and that shows technique, which is what makes a great dance.

Score:  30

Argentine Tango

Professional dancers, Parissa & Sandor, dance the Argentine Tango.

You all know how I love to bitch about time wasters but I do love an Argentine Tango and the fact that they’re doing it to a Tom Waits song makes it all the more fabulous.  A tip of the top hat to them.  It is really a dream of mine to go to Argentina and learn to tango.  Parissa & Sandor are amazing.

Hope Solo

Hope & Maks dance their Argentine Tango to "Whatever Lola Wants" by Sarah Vaughan. We get to hear some personal stories that have made them who they are today. Her story: Growing up, Hope was a daddy's little girl and was devastated by her parents divorce. Her father kidnapped her and her siblings and they ultimately watched him get arrested. She didn't know if she would see him again. One day on the way to a soccer match she saw a homeless man and recognized him as her father. She immediately reconnected with him and reforged a relationship. He came to every game after that, but passed away a few weeks before the Women's World Cup in '07. Because she was in mourning, the coach decided to play another goalie. This didn't sit well with Hope and she voiced her displeasure to the media getting her kicked off the team. Struggling through this part of her life has given her the drive she has today.

Wow, that story is no joke.  Didn’t see that one coming.  I do remember the scandal about her getting kicked off the team, but never heard the back-story.  Talk about a comeback – from disgrace to the Olympics.  Her tango was pretty good.  A few awkward moments but we expect those.  I think she held her own though.  Len thought it was far far better than the first dance.  Bruno said much better.  She was sexy and it was much more controlled.  Carrie Ann said there was much more fluidity, but the lifts were not graceful.  She gives Maks some crap for smirking.  I wish she would have reached out and smacked him.  Of course, Hope defends him and says the judges have wanted her off from day 1.  Just when you pull me back in Hope, you kick me right back out.

Score:  24

J.R. Martinez

J.R. and Karina dance to "Bust Your Windows" by Jazmine Sullivan. His story: J.R. says his mother taught him that you should always smile no matter what. Your never know when your smile can change someone else's life. His mother tells us about the day she got the phone call about J.R. being in the accident. She says he was so depressed but she told him that whoever is going to be in his life was going to be in his life because of who he is, not what he looks like. From then on, J.R. was who he is today and has been an inspiration ever since. He is the embodiment of positivity and it is the secret to his success.

Ah, how I love this kid.  The world truly needs more people like him.  Badly.  I think we are all better off having “met” J.R.  I know I am.  Argh, damn waterworks.  I’m like a leaky faucet this season and I don’t like this kinder gentler me.  Thank goodness, I still have the Housewives to keep me cynical.  Ok, twisted ankle, twisted shmankle!  That was awesome!  Great lifts and he didn’t look like he was in any pain.  Beautiful and sensuous.  Loved him!  Judges? Bruno says he was strong, fearless and it was incredible.  Carrie Ann said there was a true fire burning between them and he commanded the lifts.  Len said it had mood, intensity and it was well done.

Score:  27

Rob Kardashian

Rob & Cheryl dance to "Libertango" by Bond. His story: So why are we here? To hear about the struggle Rob had finding his own voice in a house full of women... especially after the passing of his father. I can only imagine what that must be like. His goal was to make his father proud by getting into USC, which he did. However, afterwards he didn't have any idea what to do with his life. DWTS helped him to step out of the shadows to become his own person.

I seriously have a visceral reaction to Kris Kardashian. I literally can’t stand to look at her. Uh, did he ever consider using his college to degree to get a job?  Eh, whatever.  We’re here.  Let’s see him tango.  Well, say what I will about him, he did a really good job.  That kid can dance…. regardless of how I feel about him and his fam-dam-ily.  Carrie Ann says there was no faking involved.  That was good strong dancing.  Len says it’s not where you start.  It’s where you finish and he is finishing strong.  Bruno says he’s looking great!

Score:  27

Ricki Lake

Ricki & Derek dance to "Allerdings" by Otros Aires. Her story: Ricki knew from a young age that she wanted to be in the performing arts. But she had many things to overcome, including having been molested as a child in her own home. She says it's hard when you don't feel safe in your own home so she turned to food to comfort her. It was when she got a call to audition for Hairspray that got her out of her house. But she was still using food to cope. Finally, she took her life into her own hands, lost 100 pounds and landed the her own talk show. Then, she had another setback when she went through a divorce. But being the tenacious woman she is, she moved to LA and rebuilt her life.

I do like Ricki and admire her fight for sure.  She actually seems like a genuinely kind and good person.  Wow, she did a great tango.  Really well done.  Derek is a great choreographer.  They really were on point on that performance.  Len said she doesn’t know how good that was but it was really really good.  Bruno says the woman was on top the whole way through.  Yeah, ok Bruno.  Carrie Ann says she sees her core strength developing which has brought the pop and shine to her dancing.

Score:  29

Cha Cha Relay

So, I guess for the Cha Cha Relay they all dance to the same song, one at a time, and then they get ranked from best to worst. Best dance gets 10 points, second gets 8, third gets 6 and last gets 4 bonus points. They are dancing to "I Like How It Feels" by Enrique Iglesias.

Well, Hope and Maks were definitely the worst.  The rest is going to be interpretation as they all did pretty darn well.  And can someone tell me why they keep putting Ricki in tan illusion netting that is nowhere near her skin color?  Len thinks the whole night was going out for a great meal and this was dessert.  Bruno says it’s very difficult because everyone delivered tonight.  Carrie Ann says it was interesting to see who did well and who struggled.

Hope & Maks – 4 pts; Night Total 49

J.R. & Karina – 6 pts; Night Total 56

Ricki & Derek – 8 pts; Night Total 67

Rob & Cheryl – 10 pts; Night Total 65

Bottom Line:

Rachel:  I’m watching this late and hoping you all got the vote out for J.R. and Karina!  I’m gonna be really pissed if the hideous Miami traffic (1.5 hours to go 17 miles) prevented me from voting (I know, I know. I never vote.) sends J.R. home.

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