Cue that theme music!

Posted: Tuesday, April 14, 2009 by Travis Cody in

It's live from Hollywood!

Our eight remaining couples dance Rumba or Jive.

Rumba is probably my least favorite of the Latin dances, mainly because the choreography often consists of too much posing. This dance is characterized by figure eight hip rolls and a strong romantic connection between the dancers. This is the dance where Len gets cranky...if you commit the dreaded dance crime of walking on your heels, Mr Cranky Pants will mark you down! No heel leads! When done well, Rumba has been called the vertical expression of a horizontal desire. The clip is Eugene Katsevman and Maria Manusova at the 2007 IDSF World Latin Championships.

Conversely, Jive is my favorite of the Latin styles. The dance has it's roots in Harlem through American Swing and Lindyhop. Jive is fun, fast, and upbeat, characterized by quick flick kicks and ball change movements. This clip is Stefano di Filippo and Anna Melnikova from the 2007 Italian championship.

Let's see how our couples do.

One could almost call this the festival of tiny costumes! The Ladies dancing Rumba are wearing some intriguing bits of material. Yeowza!

Ty and Chelsie dance Jive. Based on his Lindyhop, we expected good stuff in this dance. It's a country jive, starting out just a bit slow. Once he got started with the kicks he did pretty well. But this week we've got to be just a bit critical of Chelsie's choreography. The dance was disjointed. It just didn't flow very well. And she mostly danced around Ty in the first third. He still looked a bit wooden and stiff. There were some good moments, but they were rare and he did miss a bunch of steps. That was disappointing. Judges say 6's across for a total of 18. Tough score, but that dance just wasn't good enough.

Shawn and Mark dance Rumba. Let me remind you...she is 17 and her parents are probably watching so this dance should not be the HAWT kind of Rumba. That dance was quite sultry without being raunchy. It was age appropriate, steamy without being overly sexy. It was a romantic dance, and that's the kind of Rumba we like. She's still holding back a bit with her hip rolls. But she held her foot to the floor during a really difficult trick toward the end, once again demonstrating the control she has over her movement. We really enjoyed that performance. It was sweet, innocent, and beautifully danced. Judges say 8,9,9 for a total of 26. Excellent!

LT and Edyta dance Jive. He should be able to find the rhythm in this dance. Warren Sapp came to rehearsal and psyched LT up. This dance is way more LT's style. His personality really came out. His musicality was much better. The tempo of the music was a bit slow for Jive. But he had a great time dancing it. There were a couple of awkward moments near the end where the dance didn't flow from move to move very well. But this performance was much better than the last couple of weeks. Judges say 7,7,8 for a total of 22.

Melissa and Tony dance Rumba. That was a beautiful dance. Tony is really knocking it out of the park with his choreography. It was very clean, and so sexy without being raunchy. In contrast to Shawn, she danced an adult romantic version of the Rumba. It was mature and passionate, and again sultry without getting down and dirty with it. And it was danced rather than posed, which we always appreciate. Melissa's ability to pick up the dances allows Tony to extend his performance. He is able to dance freely as a professional, rather than hold anything back as a teacher might have to do with an amateur. Judges say 9's a cross for a total of 27.

Lil Kim and Derek dance Jive. AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!! Derek had a red Tbird! I need a moment...ok. That dance had a ton of character and flair. It was up tempo the way we like to see the Jive. Unfortunately, she got lost a couple of times. The choreography might have been just a bit too ambitious this week. That dance wasn't as good as it could have been. It was definitely fast paced and rockin', but Kim struggled to get all the steps in the right place. Bruno and Carrie Ann lost their minds over it, but it wasn't that good. It was definitely fun, but this week Derek missed on the choreography and Kim missed on footwork. Judges say 10,8,10 for a total of 28. Bruno and Carrie Ann should be embarrassed to throw 10's on that dance. There were just too many mistakes. It was enjoyable to watch but it was not perfect.

Steve and Lacey dance Rumba. Lacey dances in her lingerie. Hmmmmmm. What can we say? Steve simply can't dance. That has been very well established. But we did enjoy watching Lacey and the dance did have a charm and sweetness to it. Lacey was one of our favorites on So You Think You Can Dance. We love the way she just goes for it. She made a great Rumba, and Steve moved through it. We'd love to see her get a chance to dance that choreography with another pro. Still, as much as we love Lacey, it's time for Steve to go. Judges say 7,4,5 for a total of 16.

Gilles and Cheryl dance Jive. He can pretty much dance anything. Cheryl steps up the challenge every week, and he rises to it. That was an incredibly difficult series of steps and they made it look so effortless and easy. There were some issues with sharpness, and that was probably because there were so many steps and the tempo was so fast. Len called it a bit frantic, and we agree somewhat. But Cheryl knew Gilles could handle working on that beat, so she went for it rather than find a secondary beat. They don't play it safe at all. Judges say 9,8,9 for a total of 26.

Chuck and Julianne dance Rumba. Finally they looked like a couple with something going on between them. We still find him awkward, but the performance in this Rumba was sexy and romantic. That was a dance between lovers. Definitely their best work together this season. Chuck is never going to be a good technical dancer. And you know they got the hotness factor right when Len turns his nose up and complains that it was too much. Julianne's choreography was on the steamy side. She pulled the romance out of the animal connection between two people. Judges say 8,7,8 for a total of 23. That score is representative of his struggle with technique, but we thought it was their best dance.

Here's our leader board:

28 Kim and Derek
27 Melissa and Tony
26 Gilles and Cheryl
26 Shawn and Mark
23 Chuck and Julianne
22 LT and Edyta
18 Ty and Chelsie
16 Steve and Lacey

Now, I'm the first to admit that this show should not be taken seriously. It doesn't take itself seriously. It is merely entertainment. However, the score of 28 given to Kim and Derek is bogus. She had way too many mistakes in her footwork. She did not dance better than Melissa or Gilles or Shawn. Both Carrie Ann and Bruno got carried away with the music and the trappings of the performance, and refused to see the flaws in the dancing. That's disappointing.

There are only 8 votes per phone line this week, and it's time for me to narrow down from 3 pairs to 2. Shawn got half of my votes, and the other half went to Melissa. Pam threw all 8 of hers to Gilles. She says she likes Melissa and Shawn, but she's locked in now for Gilles.

Oh...many thanks to Tony, Mark, Julianne, and Lacey for choreographing Rumbas that were more about the dancing than the posing. We definitely appreciate that.

Check back tomorrow for encores and results!


  1. Marsha says:

    Ok, then it wasn't just me and I feel better.

    That score for Kim and Derek was so bogus it wasn't even funny. She was lost in the dance way too many times to be rewarded with 2 10s.

    They refused to punish her for her mistakes but had no problem doing it to Gilles and Cheryl.

    I've got to say that the judges lost credibility to me because of this one.

    So wrong!

  1. Dianne says:

    I vote purely on what I enjoy - as you said the show can't be taken seriously plus I don't know that much about the technical stuff to be a true critic

    so - I split my vote with Kim and Giles. I really enjoyed her dance and well Giles is Giles.

    The judging has always been wacky to me - last night more than usual but that's part of the theater of it all

  1. Anndi says:

    Monday night with Gilles.. Mmmmmmmm!

    I know, other people danced, but...


  1. I understand Lil Kim made it through the ratings, Trav. Is she the best? And I understand it's your birthday (found out at Vinny's) Well, HAPPY BIRTHDAY!! Enjoy your special day! :)

  1. Kanani says:

    Thanks for keeping up with this! I don't watch the show, but it's always fun to read what you have to say about it!

  1. Hey, Trav! I have a post built just for you today! Happy Birthday!

  1. Dance is the most serious thing on this planet, Mr. Travis!

    Thanks for the jive clip - my dad was a big jiver and used to teach it. We had fun at my wedding reception.

    And Happy Birthday a wee bit late - you share the same day as the little guy for whom I used to be the nanny. He just turned 25. Can you say completely bizarre...? And remember when I posted a picture of my mom in late-60's regalia and you commented that your mom had a similar outfit? Well, I'll be turning 45 later this year. You Dragon, you.

  1. festival of tiny costumes....laughing.

    love ty...but he won't be a finalist.

    shawn has an amazing talent and a great future ahead of her...but her age will probably prevent her from winning it all.

    LT works hard...but also not a contender.

    they seem to be loving melissa...and you are exactly right about tony!

    Lil Kim...not a ten...but I thought the JailHouse Rock concept was funny.

    Steve-O needs to go-o but his fan base make extend his dance career...

    Gilles had an off night...but I bet he works really hard to regain the top tier.

    It was chuck and julianne's best...but he is not the dancer she is...and never will be

    Obviously I still have no one else I know who watches this show to discuss these things with.

    Thanks for being there trav! smile.

  1. Gilles deserves it in my opinion. Interesting that the Rhumba is considered the sexiest. For me it has always been the Tango.

  1. Akelamalu says:

    The slow splits in that Rhumba made my eyes water! :0

  1. Linda says:

    "Bits of material" sums it up just about right! Kind of hard to call those costumes, isn't it??

  1. Bond says:


    Oh, yeah...dancing. You are so right on about Lil Kim's scores...

    I really thing this is going to come down to Melissa and Giles...

    The crappy music selector was back again last night...some of those song choices? Just wrong.

  1. Thom says:

    I think this season is the absolute worst on DWTS. I guess it's cuz the stars aren't that big and well known as in past seasons. I dunno. Steve O has to go...I think the Gilles is hands down the best and will win unless Melissa, who I had high hopes for picks it up a notch or two.Where is my Cloris when I need her LOL

  1. Ivanhoe says:

    Now you got me thinking if this is yet another show that has been bought and paid for. I sure hope not :o)
    I moved - if you want to keep visiting - I'm at:

  1. Travis says:

    Marsha: Nothing against Kim and Derek...I like what they've been doing. But I hope Carrie Ann and Bruno were embarrassed when they watched it back.

    Dianne: You're's all about the theatre. Carrie Ann has annoyed me in the past by her selective eye. She's thrown a 10 when the dancer put his hand down to keep from falling on his ass. But it is what it is.

    Ann: Pam feels the same.

    Mary: I don't think she's the best, but she is very good. Thanks for the birthday greetings!

    Kanani: And now we're only 5 weeks out from my other dancing show, So You Think You Can Dance!

    WT4W: I'll be by soon!

    Julia: Yes Ma'am! Huzzah to my fellow Dragon!

    Katherine: I don't think it was the real festival of tiny costumes, but it was dang close. And thanks for your comments...I enjoy seeing what others think.

    Starr: He'll probably get it. He seems to have secured a fanbase.

    Akelamalu: I know!

    Linda: Kinda, but I'm not complaining!

    V: If the fans continue to vote, then I think you're right about the final two. Then I could see the judges doing everything possible to set the tie on scoring so the fans will decide.

    Thom: Really? I'm enjoying it. Sometimes I like it even better when I don't know the celebrities as well. Then I don't have as many expectations of them.

    Ivanhoe: Thanks for the reminder! I need to change my reader right now.

  1. Julie says:

    Regardless of whether the judges do their thing fairly this is one entertaining production!

    Your review is even more interesting then their opinions. Well....maybe Bruno is a tad more interesting...but that only because i can't see you!


  1. Hope says: are going to make me send you presents if you dont' knock it off...what man's man knows this stuff??? Ann just smack me around a little will ya?

    oh yeah and btw I'm with ya...tha leader board is F-d. I can't believe I'm using words like leader board.

    That's it!!! going now... ;)