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…who’s the best dancer (or at least has the most loyal voters) of them all?
Greetings, Gasmii! Here we are at last. It’s the end of “Dancing With the Stars All-Stars.” It’s been an interesting ride. We saw champions fall. We saw underdogs come out on top. We saw Bristol Palin squeeze a little bit more time out of her mother’s 15 minutes of fame. I think I speak for most of us when I say, “Thank God that’s over!” Before we can heave that sigh of relief, we have to recap the season finale. So who will win? Will it be Kelly Monaco – the season one winner who is out to prove herself? Will it be Melissa Rycroft – the underdog hoping to win her first Mirror Ball Trophy? Or will it be Shawn Johnson – the rebel gymnast who’s done nothing but break the rules all season?
So let’s get started! Oh! Apparently this is the first time that the finalists have all be women. That’s kind of cool. As usual on the finale show, the first half of Monday night starts with our finalists recreating their favorite dances from earlier in the season. First up, Kelly and Val are dancing their paso doble from week three. I think that’s a good choice. That was probably their best dance all season. Val is right – this was the point in the season that Kelly really became a competitor.
That dance is still crazy impressive. They definitely missed a hold in the beginning, but it seemed like Kelly stayed in character, and it worked with the whole story of this dance. I don’t think it will hurt their scores too much. Also, choosing to showcase a shirtless Val is never a bad idea.
Len starts out by thanking the band and the singers. He still thinks that this is Kelly’s best dance to date. Bruno calls Kelly a fire angel and she was polished. Carrie Ann is proud of how far that Kelly has come. Despite the small mistake, Kelly has proven that she deserves to be in the finals. Seriously? Who gave the judges each a Valium before the show? They’re really boring tonight.
Carrie Ann – 9.5
Len – 10
Bruno – 10
Melissa and Tony – the injury prone duo – are up next. They’ll be recreating their samba also from week three. This is also a good choice. That dance was incredible. Melissa reminds us that she and Tony are up against two former champions. They’re really going to play up that underdog thing, aren’t they?
Did that seem really slow to anyone else? I just always think of the samba being really fast and showy. That seemed rather watered down to me. Yeah, there were a lot of cool tricks, but the actual dancing just seemed a bit off. I’m probably wrong, and that was probably the greatest samba in the history of samba.
Bruno starts by rolling his r-s a lot. I think he calls her Brazilian. Carrie Ann is right – Melissa does have incredible abs. Len likes the party flavor and thinks there was great technique.
Carrie Ann – 10
Len – 10
Bruno – 10
I wonder if Melissa is sick of getting 10s yet.
Shawn and Derek picked their quickstep from week three. Really? Everyone picked week three? Also, did Shawn and Derek really think it was a good idea to choose the first dance that they really got criticized for breaking the rules? Shut up, Derek! There is a difference between taking a risk and just throwing out the rules of the competition. I just can’t with this one anymore. I used to really like Derek. Now I just want to see him lose and then go cry about it.
Well, there it was. Was it still a fun dance? Absolutely. Was it impressive? Without a doubt. Was it just a big “fuck you” to the judges? Of course it was. I think Shawn was right to question Derek about choosing this dance. I wish he would have listened to her. In my opinion, they should have done the Tango that Shawn and Mark danced while Derek was injured. It would have been really cool to see Shawn do that same dance with two different partners.
Carrie Ann agrees that it was a fan favorite, but is sad that they didn’t choose to follow the rules. Len thought there was more body contact this time, but they still broke the rules. Bruno thinks that, despite their rule-breaking, they’re still good dancers. Shut up, Shawn. If you respect the rules, you don’t completely disregard them. Stop it with the “we’ve dedicated this season to the fans” bullshit. It’s getting old.
Carrie Ann – 9
Len – 8.5
Bruno – 9 and a HALF!
I think that’s more than fair. I may be grumpy like Len, but I think he was generous. When you’re doing the traditional dances, follow the rules – especially in the finals where you have a chance to go crazy in the freestyle dance.
Speaking of the freestyle dance, it’s time for them to begin. This season, they are “super sized.” The couples get to use whatever props they want, and can have other performers join them.
First up, it’s Kelly and Val. They want to start out with some aerial stunts. They’re dancing to “(I’ve Had) The Time of My Life.” Are you fucking kidding me? You’re not Jennifer Grey, Kelly. She’s the only contestant they’ve ever had who would be allowed to dance to that song! I may not be allowed to put Baby in the corner, but Kelly, you should go sit there right now…and take a cold shower because I’m tired of hearing about how happy you and Val are to have met each other.
Wow. The announcer said “SUPER SIZED” in the most awkward way humanly imaginable. It was really cool to hear Val play the violin, but it didn’t really seem to make sense with the dance. Apparently, the man is also a rapper. Perhaps he could have serenaded her with a few rhymes. All in all, that dance was kind of…strange. There was suddenly a gospel choir out of nowhere. Also, when the other dancers rushed in, I felt like Kelly and Val got lost in the crowd. And what the fuck was with Kelly’s final pose? She looked like a little kid being held up by her dad while they played airplane. I just don’t think it was one of the more impressive freestyle dances we’ve ever seen.
Len likes the opening and the lifts, but thought it wasn’t very original. Bruno thinks that Patrick Swayze is smiling on them…or rolling in his grave. Carrie Ann says that the fact that no one knows if Kelly and Val are together or not really played into the dance. How, Carrie Ann? How does that play into a freestyle dance?
Brook’s interview with Kelly and Val left me 100% sure that’s it’s just a showmance. They’ve been refusing to give up anything until after the show. It got them a lot of votes. Well played, Kelly and Val, well played.
Carrie Ann – 10
Len – 9.5
Bruno – 10
That seems a bit over-scored.
Melissa and Tony want to redeem themselves with their freestyle because, in season 8, they bombed horribly. They want to go more contemporary because it would be such a contrast with their samba.
I’m going to repeat something a friend said to me about this dance: “Someone needs to tell that singer that she’s not Beyonce.” I can’t deal with the music on the show most of the time. As for the dance – meh. That pretty much sums up how I feel about it. I never really did like contemporary dance. To me, it always looks like the dancers are taking themselves too seriously. I do know where this comes from. The church I attended with my family would always try to get as many members of the congregation involved in services as possible. On Christmas Eve, they would always feature a woman who sang the first verse of “Silent Night” in German. I always liked that. However, one year they had asked a a woman to perform an interpretive dance along with the German singer. I never could keep a straight face watching it. As a result, a lot of dances like this just look silly to me.
I’m sure the judges don’t have the same back story I do and probably love it. Bruno thinks that it was the perfect way to showcase Melissa’s talent. Carrie Ann thinks that the risk they took paid off. What risk did Melissa and Tony take? This is the freestyle round. They can do whatever the hell they want. Perhaps because it was contemporary? What the hell is Carrie Ann talking about? Len likes the passion that Melissa and Tony showed. He simply says it was wonderful. When Len is left speechless, you know it was a good dance.
Carrie Ann – 10
Len – 10 (He wishes he had an 11.)
Bruno – 10
I guess we could call it 31/30.
Last up, Shawn and Derek are dancing…with the U.S. women’s gymnastics team? Really? I guess Shawn really wanted us to know that she’s a gymnast. I wasn’t 100% sure until now. I’m glad she told me or I never would have known. How the hell is this Shawn’s redemption, Derek? From what does she have to be redeemed? If you’re referring to her not being competing in the Olympics, then “Dancing With the Stars” is more of a step back than a redemption.
Was that music an arrangement of “Clementine?” Oh, look, it was one big gymnastics routine…with Shawn’s name in lights. I wish she would stop falling back on her gymnastics training and just dance. Melissa has a lot of experience from being a Dallas Cowboys cheerleader. However, never once did I ever look at any of Melissa’s dances and think, “Oh, she’s a cheerleader.” I’d also like to take this opportunity to call bullshit on the injury that Shawn has been talking about all season. Her doctor said she couldn’t do any type of gymnastics anymore because of her knee. However, gymnastics is all she’s done all season! I’m thinking the injury story was just gain sympathy votes. As for the dance, it was another one that kind of looked a bit awkward. Maybe it’s just me, but none of the freestyle dances were all that impressive. I’m rather disappointed.
Carrie Ann thinks that it was incredible. Len thinks that the dance was unexpected and gives her a gold medal. Bruno yells a lot of adjectives before the word “brilliance.” Tom thinks it smells like a 30. What exactly does a 30 smell like?
Carrie Ann – 10
Len – 10 AGAIN
Bruno 10 AGAIN