Cue that theme music...

Posted: Tuesday, May 18, 2010 by Travis Cody in

It's the semifinals live from Hollywood!

We're down to our Final Four and they will be performing two individual dances in styles they haven't yet attempted.   

Tom Bergeron revealed that each of the remaining four pairs has led the viewer voting at one time.  What do you know about that?  I guess that means that anyone can win eh?

Erin and Maks dance Viennese Waltz.  Nothing but business in rehearsal footage.  Good deal.  Her lines are lovely.  She has learned how to take the stiffness out of her arms and her upper body is much less awkward now, and her movement is extended from her shoulders through her elbows and out to her fingers.  Unfortunately, I think I would have preferred a gown on her for this dance because her legs still look wonky to me.  She's naturally bow-legged and for me, that takes some of the grace out of her dancing.  Still, this was a lovely Waltz.  They had good rise and fall.  It was mostly elegant and smooth.  She had wonderful musicality.  I just think she misses the relaxed grace that she needed for this style of dance.  Judges say 9's across for a total of 27.  

Nicole and Derek dance Argentine Tango.  Derek has a neck injury this week and struggled during rehearsal, but he's dancing.  And what a dance.  The footwork was so precise.  The lifts were right on point.  The choreography was extraordinarily difficult.  I had a couple of issues with her legs in places, but that's just me.  You know I'm aware of legsses, right?  Hehehehe!  This was an outstanding performance.  It had attitude and drama, aggression and passion.  They really are outstanding together.  Judges say 10's across for a total of 30.  They are dancing so well that at this point, the only thing that can derail them is voter backlash.  You just never know how the voters are going to respond to someone who is perceived to be a ringer.  It's unfortunate, but it's the reality that is DWTS.

Chad and Cheryl dance Waltz.  I'll give him credit for some nice rise and fall.  He also used his height to stand tall and be a strong lead for Cheryl.  That was really quite a nice dance.  His foot placement was correct and fluid, which allowed him to connect one movement to the next.  His extensions and lines were excellent.  The dance was romantic and beautiful.  This was an excellent effort.  I would rather have seen Niecy this week, but I can't really find anything in this Waltz that tells me Chad doesn't deserved the fourth spot in the semifinal.  Well done.  Judges say 9's across for a total of 27.  I'll agree with that score.  

Evan and Anna dance Foxtrot.  Evan's strength is in his technical ability, but in this dance he got to show his playful side.  What a showman!  He was absolutely in control of this dance from start to finish.  His leaps were so effortless.  It was almost like he was floating.  That was so much fun to watch!  It was great to watch him relax and lose himself in the dance.  He and Anna made a moment with that performance.  Anna's choreography was stunning.  The connections between movements was outstanding.  They told a story with this performance.  This routine was complete.  Judges say 10,9,10 for a total of 29.  Come on Len!  Put Evan and Nicole even and let the fans decide!

Man!  This competition is on!  All the pros stepped up their choreography this week, and all the celebrities stepped up with focus and determination.

Here's our leader board after the ballroom round:

30 Nicole and Derek
29 Evan and Anna
27 Erin and Maks
27 Chad and Cheryl

Now the Latin round, and each celebrity must perform a solo within the routine.

Erin and Maks dance Paso Doble.  Oh...oh my...BOOTS!  Must focus.'s BOOTS!  Pay attention and focus!  OK.  Dancing...and BOOTS!  And just so you know, Erin took dance as a child and cheered in high school, but she's not a ringer.  Wait...BOOTS.   Get over the BOOTS!  That performance was definitely aggressive.  She took control of that stage in her solo.  I spotted a couple of issues with her footwork, but I'm going to forgive those because she was into the character and blasted through the performance.  But, I do agree with Len that there were a lot of elements that weren't strictly Paso.  She danced her solo very well, but it wasn't really classic Paso movement.  It's too bad Maks lost his balance on the final pose.  Judges say 10,9,10 for a total of 29.  As much as I enjoyed her performance, I can't agree with the 10's because you can't be perfect when you fall on your ass.  But I do think she's done exactly what she needed to get a spot in next week's finale.

Nicole and Derek dance Cha Cha Cha.  OK...Nicole went to a school for performing arts.  She understands dance and performance.  I get it.  That means she knows how to take training and she understands musicality and rhythm.  But that doesn't mean that these styles are easy to learn and interpret in a competition format.  The solo didn't have much Cha Cha Cha in it.  This was a funky Cha Cha Cha and they nailed it.  It's not going to appeal to everyone, particularly those who prefer a more classic Cha Cha Cha.  In fact, I wouldn't rank this dance as one of my favorites from them.  Don't get me wrong...I can't find anything technically wrong with it.  But I didn't enjoy it nearly as much as I wanted to.  Judges say 10,9,10 for a total of 29.  Oh...happy birthday Derek!  I'm not calling this a lock, but she should make next week's finale.

Chad and Cheryl dance Samba.  This is a great dance for him to get in this spot, but he has to remember his technique and not relax too much into it.  So far so good.  His posture is good, but he's also dancing into the floor, which is key in the Latin styles.  I'll give him his props.  Chad had his best pair of dances when he needed them.  I thought his footwork was very good.  He connected all the movements and his musicality was excellent.  This could easily have been more of a club routine, but he kept it at competition quality.  In this dance, his personality worked.  He represents what this show is about...a celebrity who had no dance training, but worked hard to learn the technique and the styles while figuring out how to perform.  Judges say 8,8,9 for a total of 25.  That score doesn't quite measure up to the other three pairs, but he's going to have his fans behind him so he could possibly get one of the three spots in next week's finale.

Evan and Anna dance Paso Doble.  This is a great dance for him because the technique and precision are highly valued in Paso, and those are his strengths.  He should be able to attack this the way he attacked Tango.  And he did!  And the solo was perfect!  I'll bet he felt like he was back on the ice there.  This had everything I want in a Paso.  It was passionate and dramatic. It was full of aggression.  The choreography was artistic but powerful.  And he was strong in every aspect, attacking each movement.  Evan says he's shy, but there was nothing shy in that performance.  Remember what I said earlier about Evan and Nicole being even?  Judges say 10's across for a total of 30.  That puts them tied with Nicole and Derek, as it should be.  The performance was absolutely stunning and I can't imagine that he won't make the finale.

Here's our leader board after both dances:

59 Nicole and Derek
59 Evan and Anna

56 Erin and Maks
52 Chad and Cheryl 

We're split.  I stuck with my man Evan while Pam stuck with her gal Nicole. 

Tune in for results tonight for the 100th elimination in the history of the show!  I'm not making any predictions for the finale.  I learned a long time ago with this show that there's no telling how the fans are going to go.

My Lakers were too much for the Suns last night in game 1 of the Western Conference finals.  LA smacked Phoenix 128-107 behind 40 points from Kobe Bryant.

Phoenix was supposed to have an edge in play off the bench.  Well, the Suns' bench might ultimately win the battle with the Lakers' bench, but last night it was LA back ups that set the tone, outscoring the Suns' bench 44-37 behind 19 from Lamar Odom and 10 from Jordan Farmar.

Game 2 is Wednesday in Los Angeles.

In the Eastern Conference final, Boston won game 1 against the Magic on Sunday.  Game 2 is tonight in Orlando.


  1. Chad is clearly the weakest dancer left and I think he will not survive. All in all, this was absolutely the best show of the season. Everyone brought their A game and it showed.
    I LOVE boots!!!

  1. Marsha says:

    That was a great show last night, one of the better semi-finals they've had. Chad has lasted must longer than I thought he would, and unless I'm mistaken, isn't this Anna's first time to make it this far, with the possibility of winning it all. Excellant job by all!!

  1. Anonymous says:

    Trav: I'm still behind Evan, too. I only saw the last dance of the evening. Goodnight and I were busy until then. Thanks for the summary.

  1. I rather hope a certain someone doesn't win, given that his head is big enough as it is.

  1. Dianne says:

    Tom Bergeron said last night's show was, in his opinion, one of the best of all 10 seasons and I agree!!

    it was great from start to finish

  1. Jamie says:

    This was one fantasic show and I think I have to go with Evan, but they are making it tough on us.

    One thing about the new format. After reading, you have to back up to the top to comment. It's a little awkward. Other than that, it looks great.

  1. 'Oh...oh my...BOOTS! Must focus.'s BOOTS!' - LOL! As soon as she stepped out in those, Travis, I turned around to Brad and said, "Travis is in 7th heaven, about now."

    That's what happened to me on the very first night, when Evan stepped out in white tie and tails. His second dance last night was the best evah! I REALLY loved it when it ended and he just stalked around her - swoony...

    The whole night was fantastic. I've really enjoyed watching Chad evolve as a dancer. There is a wonderful dancer in that man, and he's a natural partner which I can just relax and enjoy.

    For Evan, if he could borrow some of Chad's focus on his partner and instinctive anticipation of where his partner will be two seconds from now, Evan would be perfection. And if Chad could borrow some of Evan's exquisite line, he would be perfection.

    Meanwhile, Nicole IS perfection.

  1. Linda says:

    I absolutely LOVED Evan's Paso and was so glad to see him get 10's across the board for that one. If the judges had given them less I may have thrown something at the TV!

  1. Coco says:

    I've never watched this show all the way through but sometimes things change and I'm dating a man who loves to dance and we watched it and it was pretty cool, especially when Steve pulled me to my feet and started dancing with me ... but that's another story altogether. Too bad I missed most of the season but at least I get to see the end of it.

    My favourite part was the foxtrot. It was exquisite to watch and although I have no vested interest in who wins, I hope it's that couple.

  1. Coco says:

    By the way ... it took me 5 minutes to figure out where to leave my comment. It looks wonderful but it's not very functional. Was that choice characteristic of a cat person, or what?


  1. I did not see much of the show...but I did see BOOTS BOOTS BOOTS!

    They were HAWT!

  1. Akelamalu says:

    I bet you can hardly wait!

  1. Driller: The BOOTS rocked!

    Marsha: Anna finished 2nd with Jerry Rice in Season 2, but she's gone out early with Albert Reed, Steve Guttenberg, and Chuck Liddell. So I think she's due. But then, the same could be said of Maks.

    GGG: I'll have encore videos, so check in tomorrow!

    Charles: I join you in that hope.

    Dianne: I'll have to agree. Everyone danced well.

    Jamie: Sorry about the comment difficulty. If I knew how to move it or make it more apparent, I would.

    Julia: I like your descriptions of perfection, but you forgot Erin's recipe! The BOOTS must be an ingredient.

    Linda: Both of his dances were tremendous. I wouldn't want to be anyone who hasn't made up their mind yet who to vote for.

    Coco: I think the Foxtrot last night was my favorite. And I do apologize for the comment difficulty. I really like the template and I figured the comment placement would be a minor inconvenience.

    V: BOOTS!

    Akelamalu: I'm definitely excited.

  1. Ivanhoe says:

    I voted for Erin. From my phone and hubby's phone. That's 10 votes. I hope she'll get to the finale. Nicole, Evan and Erin. Should be fun! ;)