Cue that theme music!

Posted: Tuesday, April 24, 2012 by Travis Cody in

It's live from Hollywood!

Our eight remaining pairs return to celebrate the music of Motown.  How do we kick off Motown Night?  We do it with Smokey Robinson, Martha Reeves, and The Temptations.  Yes indeed we do!  Nice assist from the Dance Troupe.

The dance marathon returns as well, so this should be fun!

Gladys and Tristan dance Rumba to My Girl, performed by The Temptations.  It's an adjustment to wait so long for the dance to begin.  Rumba is not her dance at all.  It would have been nice for Gladys to get something up tempo and sassy.  Tristan incorporated some Pip-style moves into the choreography, but I'm sorry to say that I don't think it worked.  The dance was disjointed and it seemed like Gladys was struggling to remember the choreography.  She tried to perform her way through it, but the dance just didn't have a romantic Rumba quality.  They usually have good chemistry together, but I didn't see it in this dance.  The judges were kind, but I just can't say with honesty that it was a good dance.  I love Gladys.  I just wish she had gotten a style that suited her a little better so she could sass it up and have fun.  Judges say 7s across for a total of 21. 

Maria and Derek dance Foxtrot to Jimmy Mack, performed by Martha Reeves.  Ms Reeves' voice hasn't held up over time, but that's OK.  I didn't care for Derek's choreography last week.  This week he's back in the plus column.  This is classic Foxtrot choreography.  Maria looks fantastic in that silvery shimmery gown.  I didn't see her put a foot wrong, although Bruno and Carrie Ann pointed out stumbles.  I didn't see them, but I may have glanced down while I was typing.  Pam said she didn't see a mistake either, but I guess there was a slip on the stairs.  Since I didn't see it, I don't count it.  She has proven that she can do sexy and steamy, as well as elegant and sophisticated.  She keeps getting better every week.  That dance really made me smile.  Judges say 8,9,9 for a total of 26.

Roshon and Chelsie dance Rumba to Cruisin' performed by Smokey Robinson.  I love Roshon's lines.  He's able to make some great shapes with his upper body.  I thought he mostly controlled his balance better this week.  He has a tendency to get over his feet and slip.  He didn't to that this week.  I thought he had control of the dance.  He might be a scrawny guy, but I thought he showed a power in that dance that has been missing.  I thought he had the right flavor and I thought the dance was really good.  The judges have a point about the lack of smooth fluidity. Maybe it wasn't a great Rumba, but it was a fine performance and I enjoyed it.  Judges say 7,8,8 for a total of 23. 

Katherine and Mark dance Samba to I Can't Get Next to You performed by The Temptations.  I can't actually find the Samba rhythm in the song, so the dance looks weird to me.  That center section made sense, but the choreography just doesn't connect to the music.  This is unfortunate.  I think I'm watching a great performance, but it just doesn't make sense to me as a Samba.  Rats.  I can say it had high energy.  I can say that I saw Samba content.  I can say that Mark packed a ton of stuff in that 90 seconds.  I suspect I'll have to watch that back without the music.  I just had a hard time with it...but I think that's more about my reaction to the music than to the dancing.  I love that song, and I love a good Samba.  But I don't love a Samba danced to that song.  Judges say 10,9,10 for a total of 29.

Donald and Peta dance Foxtrot to The Way You Do the Things You Do, performed by The Temptations.  Love that bright sky blue color for the costumes.  I don't think that performance is going to get the 10 Donald wanted.  He had a few footwork issues and he lost his balance a couple of times.  Also, I wish he would have been more consistent with extending his arms straight out through his fingers.  I did enjoy his personality during the performance.  And he is quite a strong lead.  He has to maintain his control so he doesn't lose his balance during some pivotal moments.  That stumble near the end really cost them.  I did enjoy the performance, even thought it was a bit messy.  Judges say 9s across for a total of 27.

Melissa and Maks dance Viennese Waltz to Ooh Baby, performed by Smokey Robinson.  There's a chance for her this week.  She has to find her elegance.  I don't know how he did it, but Maks managed to find a Waltz rhythm in a song designed more for Rumba.  I thought Melissa danced really well in this piece.  I would have preferred that she hold the shapes better with her arms.  There were some moments when she rushed through the movements.  I don't find her to be elegant.  But she danced this Waltz with sophistication and class.  I thought it was her best performance.  I think getting her slowed down really helped.  Judges say 8s across for a total of 24.  I liked what Melissa said about the rehearsal footage.  The producers have a tendency to edit to an image of Maks as a tyrant.  Melissa said most of their week was not what was shown in the footage. 

Jaleel and Kym dance Cha Cha Cha to Ain't Too Proud to Beg, performed by The Temptations.  I love this Cha Cha Cha.  That loose frame that he's had in most Latin dances is gone.  He's sharp.  His posture is tall.  And his personality is all over this dance.  This one was a perfect blend of music, choreography, and dance style.  I thought Kym's choreography was fun and full of content.  Jaleel's lines were excellent.  His frame was terrific.  This dance suited him from the ground up.  His lines were fantastic.  The footwork was spot on.  It might really have helped him not only to be in the bottom two and the dance duel, but also to have danced Cha Cha Cha in it.  Judges say 10,9,10 for a total of 29.  Yes!

William and Cheryl dance Rumba to Bein' With You, performed by Smokey Robinson.  I expect him to be good at this, because it's mostly posing and swiveling hips.  He can do that.  I thought the dance was good.  They definitely had the sensuality, and I thought they danced without being raunchy.  I thought the routine was tasteful.  Pam definitely enjoyed it.  But I would like to see him work more on the technique.  He doesn't finish movements.  It bugs me that sometimes he jerks his legs back when he needs to be more crisp and taut.  Len has a point about the hips.  Rumba hips are not side to side.  Rumba hips roll through a ball swivel.  I didn't see that from William.  Judges say 9,8,10 for a total of 27.

That's it for the individual dances.  Let's have a little intermission...Smokey with Tears of a Clown, accompanied by Val and Anna.

Here's our Motown Night leader board:

29 Jaleel and Kym
29 Katherine and Mark
27 Donald and Peta
27 William and Cheryl
26 Maria and Derek
24 Melissa and Maks
23 Roshon and Chelsie
21 Gladys and Tristan

Now it's Dance Marathon, featuring Cha Cha Cha.  Our 8 couples dance together on the floor and are eliminated until one is left.  Points are awarded in reverse order, up to 10 for the winners.  I'll announce them in the order the judges choose.

Looks to me like everyone is doing well so far.  Gladys and Tristan are out first for 3 points.  Maria and Derek are out for 4 points.  Roshon and Chelsie are out for 5 points.  Melissa and Maks are out for 6 points.  Donald and Peta are out for 7 points.  Jaleel and Kym are out for 8 points.  William and Cheryl are out for 9 points.  Katherine and Mark win for 10 points.

Here's our final leader board for Motown Night:

39 Katherine and Mark
37 Jaleel and Kym
36 William and Cheryl
34 Donald and Peta
30 Melissa and Maks
30 Maria and Derek
28 Roshon and Chelsie
24 Gladys and Tristan

There were a few unfortunate music selections from the vast Motown catalog.  I do like paying tribute to the standards, but some just did not suit the dance styles they were paired with, and that bothered me a little.

Votes...only 8 per phone this week.  It's getting tougher to split between 4 celebrities.  But we did it for one more week.  My votes went to Donald, Katherine, Jaleel, and Maria.  It was a tough choice not to include Roshon.  But I'm going to have to narrow it down next week, since there are fewer and fewer votes.

Pam had some trouble choosing.  She decided to split between Katherine, Jaleel, William, and Donald.

You know the drill.  Tune in tonight for results, and check back here tomorrow for my encores and results recap.

Later gang!


  1. Two hours of helping GN with algebra . . . no TV. Thanks for the details.

  1. Cherie says:

    Looked like Carrie Ann was Ms. Cranky Pants last night. :)

  1. I was saying to myself as I watched "Man, why is it always Maks they show being so difficult?"

    As I suspected, all pairs probably have a tiff or two during the training each week - the stress almost guarantees it - but the producers love to have Maks as the villain each season...

  1. Ivanhoe says:

    Smokey was in the house? Wow! I missed that laying around in the ER. I'm ok though; just a black eye after a minor car accident :)