‘Dancing with the Stars’ recap: Showstopper Week

Tom Bergeron wants you to know that Dancing with the Stars is a LIVE show. And you never know what’s going to happen. For example, Tamar is at the hospital and NO ONE KNOWS if she is going to make it back in time for her contemporary dance with Val!

This is Hollywood, people. The show MUST go on! Put on your bedazzled jacket, sprinkle some glitter on your bosom and hit the dance floor!

Alek and Lindsay
Salsa
“Back It Up” by Prince Royce, featuring Pitbull and J-Lo
Lindsay tells Carlos that in order to correctly perform a salsa, Alek must wax all of his body hair. On national TV. With a bunch of giggly JV girls watching. None of this makes sense to me. I like hair. On a scale of zero to Channing Tatum, I’d choose chest hair every…single…time. No one agrees with me and the waxing happens. (KELLY CLARKSON!) I can understand why Lindsay wanted to draw attention to Alek’s bare chest and pectoral region. It’s because his feet and hips were not doing anything exciting. The best part of the entire routine was when Tom had to explain Bruno’s Miami Vice reference to the toddlers standing before him.
Score: 24

Alexa and Mark
Contemporary
“Make It Rain” (the Ed Sheeran version)
Mark tells Alexa that their dance is about getting out of your own head. Alexa reveals that she was told as a child that she was too fat. She suffered from an eating disorder for most of her teenage years. Mark took this sadness and built an entire routine around her battle. It was heavy choreography that fit her story well. I admit that I got chills when she finally defeated the darkness (played by Mark) and walked off the stage. Everyone cried. Everyone stood up. And everyone gave her a 10.
Score: 30

Witney and Carlos
Argentine Tango
“What Do You Mean” by Justin Bieber
Witney is feeling the pressure of week 9. She needs to come up with creative choreography. Whomever made that shirt she was wearing that featured her face and Carlos’ face on it was not lacking in the creativity department at all. Can you imagine me wearing that with Our Host Chris Harrison’s face on it? I can. And I will. Moving on. After Witney accidentally flick kicks Carlos in the nads a few times, they are ready to take the stage. Witney looks beautiful. She and Carlos a clean routine, albeit with random glittery door choreography that served zero purpose. But I agree with the judges — there wasn’t a moment.
Score: 27

Bindi and Derek
Viennese Waltz
“Roses and Violets” by Alexander Jean
Derek is suffering y’all. He is overthinking every move because he knows this routine has to be perfect. Sweet Bindi asks him how she can help him “un-overthink” the routine. Unlike the young professionals in the group, Derek is searching for that moment that will have the judges raising their “10’ paddles. He uses a blindfold to create that epic moment. Although it felt a scooch weird at first, he and Bindi pulled it off. It wasn’t my favorite, but it was still better than most. I liked how it was simple, sweet and stripped of all drama.
Score: 30

Val and Tamar
Contemporary
“Wicked Games” by Chris Isaak
Tamar had a crazy busy week. She was back and forth between New York, Las Vegas and Los Angeles. Her hectic schedule contributed to a lowered immune system, which resulted in pneumonia. Because she wasn’t there at the LIVE portion of the show, the judges had to critique her dress rehearsal footage. As most people would, she didn’t perform full-out. Val wanted more energy from her and I totally get that. The judges got it too and the scores reflected that sentiment. Val was ticked. He didn’t want them to judge her at all, but Tom said rules were rules. Val was not a happy campter.
Score: 22

Nick and Sharna
Quickstep
“Cool Cat in Town” by Take 5
Nick is worried that all of the touring with Backstreet has made his body bruised and broken. He has the old man hip injury (not to be confused with my old lady knee pain) and is limping through most of the routine. This freaks Sharna out. However, with the encouragement of his fellow Backstreeters in the audience, Nick pulls off a fun gangster/speak easy routine, complete with JV dancers and hat choreography. Sharna looked like Jessica Rabbit in navy. It was as awesome as it sounds.
Score: 28

Next up is the new Dancing with the Stars showstoppers competition. With six couples left, they will each be paired off into teams to perform a famous stage performance. The best friends get to dance with each other (Witney and Lindsay, as well as Mark and Derek) and the two old people are left to nurse each other’s pneumonia and hip flexor. Here we go!

Carlos and Alek
Paso Doble
“We Will Rock You” from the musical about Queen
This particular show is on a cruise ship. Poor Witney and Lindsay have to simultaneously roll their eyes as Carlos and Alek gallivant all over the ship playing with its many toys. Their lack of hard work showed in their lackluster performance. It was sooooo slow. It was extremely elementary. And no amount of JV dancers could have pulled it up from the depths of blah. The glow-in-the-dark drum painting business at the end was a waste too.
Score: 24

Bindi and Alexa
Charleston
“Hot Honey Rag” and “All That Jazz” from Chicago
Apparently the teams have five seconds to come up with a routine. This stresses Derek out. Mark tries to talk him off the ledge, but it doesn’t work. He reminds the audience that he’s been in Derek’s life for 20 years. He knows that Derek suffers from “KTVD” — Killing the Vibe, Derek. Derek is frustrated with some of Bindi’s moves and wants to fix them, while Mark just wants to move on. The girls wait patiently. After that dramatic intro, you’d think their routine would be a hot mess, but this is Derek we are talking about. IT WAS AWESOME. All the JV dancers were on fire. The girls were adorable. The quick dress change was cool. And I loved that Derek and Mark took a back stage to their partners. I believe it deserved the perfect score.
Score: 30

Nick and Tamar
Rumba
“Hey Jude” from Love — The Beatles Show
Newsflash: Tamar is back! And she brought all the supporting players for the Cirque du Soleil show with her. There were umbrellas. Lots and lots of umbrellas. There was an aerialists who flipped for two solid minutes while throwing confetti onto the ground. There were horrific plaid suits. It was mass chaos. I think that was on purpose. I’m not sure if one person rumba’d. But the judges loved it!
Score: 27

Since we were short on time, Tom and Erin immediately announced that Bindi, Nick, Alek and TAMAR were all safe this week. The moment the producers had hoped for had finally come. Alexa and Carlos were both in the spotlight of doom, and one of them would be going home — after the break!

Alexa melts and walks out of her doom spotlight into Carlos’. I love that she did that. She can’t help it. They stand forehead to forehead for what seems like FOREVER before Tom announces that it’s Alexa who is going home. She honestly looked relieved. I think she wanted it to be her before Carlos. And like she said, she went out with a bang! Two perfect scores!

Carlos’ ugly crying was pretty special. Witney’s eye rolls were too. I can’t decide if I want him to “win it for her” next week, or if I want him to be so distraught that he can’t go on without her in the next practice room. It should be a good!

Which routine was your favorite? Do you think Alexa deserved to go home? And where do you stand on the chest hair debate? Sound off in the comment section!

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