It's rock and roll night here on Dancing With the Stars, which means rock-themed tangos and pasos, as well as a dance marathon.
But first, we're going to get the list of Top 10 favorite dances, chosen by viewers. Which totally means this should be down to an hour or an hour and a half. But instead, filler: No. 10 favorite dance: Shawn Johnson and Mark Ballas' freestyle from Season 8. No. 9: Donny Osmond and Kym Johnson's Argentine tango from Season 9. No. 8: Helio Castroneves and Julianne Hough's zoot suit quick step from season 5. No. 7: Apolo Ohno and Julianne Hough's freestyle from Season 4. No. 6: Season 9's futuristic paso from Joanna Krupa and Derek Hough. No. 5: Mel B and Maksim Chmerkovskiy's paso doble from Season 5. No. 4: Nicole Scherzinger and Derek Hough's 1950s style paso doble. No. 3: Apolo Ohno and Julianne Hough's Season 4 samba, the first 30/30 for that season. No. 2: Gilles Marini and Cheryl Burke's Season 8 tango. No. 1: Drew Lachey and Cheryl Burke's Season 2 freestyle to "Save a Horse, Ride a Cowboy," which is probably my favorite, or at least most memorable performance from the show, too.
OK, on with the show. First up are Audrina Patridge and Tony Dovolani, with the paso doble. He's afraid she is too sweet and wholesome, so he takes her to MMA training to find some aggression. In the performance (to "Another One Bites the Dust"), she is channeling her aggression by making duckface, but they are clearly having fun with it. I thought it was one of her stronger dances, except that her arms seemed a little off-kilter to me. Head judge Len Goodman says she has the potential to blow them away every week, but it always lacks some character, and it does this week too. Bruno Tonioli tells her to imagine "the man-eating Spanish beauty" to get there, because instead she looked scornful. Carrie Ann Inaba says she agrees, but she has shown so much improvement since week one. She says she needs to figure out the intention of each movement. Scores: 8-8-8, for a 24/30.
Kyle Massey and Lacey Schwimmer hope their rocking tango goes better than their disco foxtrot. They dance to "If I Had You." (Is Adam Lambert rock and roll? I guess in this song he is. And at least Kyle and Lacey know who that is.) Kyle's been working really hard on his frame and his footwork, and it shows. The audience goes cuh-razy. Bruno says it's obvious that he has put in a lot of work, though he points out one little bobble. Carrie Ann says he makes everything his own, and he had great carriage all through the dance. Len says this was much better, and he enjoyed his performance-driven dance, even though he still needs to keep improving his technique. Scores: 8-7-8, for a 23/30.
Jennifer Grey and Derek Hough bring their pent-up energy from last week to tonight's rock paso doble (to Pink's "So What" -- they are stretching the definition of rock tonight). They are having a pretty good night, but she stumbles at the very end, and it messes up the timing of their ending. Carrie Ann says she needs to calm down -- she says she's become disjointed and is going downhill. "It was a rough, rough ride!" Len says they had the attack, aggression and attitude, but because of the gusto, they lost some of the control. Bruno says she was like a woman on the verge of a nervous breakdown trying to rip off her skirt. Scores: 6-7-7, for a 20/30.
Rick Fox and Cheryl Burke are doing the tango, and it's Rick's first time in ballroom hold since the first week. He wants to break the steps down into minutae, Cheryl wants it to flow, and they are having trouble making both of those things work. They dance to "You Really Got Me" (the Van Halen version), and his aggression is also coming out as duckface. But they rock out nonetheless. Len thinks he did an excellent job with a difficult dance. Bruno says he was like "a Mohican on the warpath." He would have liked a little more light and shade. Carrie Ann thinks they did an amazing job balancing everything, but he does need to watch the face a little. Scores: 8-8-8, for a 24/30.
Bristol Palin and Mark Ballas hope to recover from the monkey business last week. She advocates for an air guitar section during their tango so she can show off more personality. They dance to "According to You," another pop song that happens to have guitars. I'm not sure the air guitar part came off like they wanted it to -- she seemed really emotionless throughout the rest of the performance, and then there was that one little moment of goofiness. It was a bit disjointed. But she did remember her steps. Bruno says this was her best performance and technique to date. Carrie Ann says that was "ridiculously amazing": "Who are you?" Len says she went from chimp to "almost a champ." He is dropping a point for them dropping hold for a moment. Scores: 8-7-8, for a 23/30.
Kurt Warner and Anna Trebunskaya struggle with combining the paso doble and Kurt's nonexistent rocking side. Bret Michaels comes to give him a pep talk, and Kurt finds his inner rocker looks just like Bret Michaels. They dance to "The Final Countdown" and show a lot of power and passion, but some of it seems a little off to me, a tad bit out of control. Carrie Ann thought it was very scruffy and unpolished, but it felt uncomfortable. Len says he sees what Anna was trying to do, but it was awkward. Bruno says he worked very hard, but he looked like he was doing karate, and his lines were off. Scores: 6-6-6, for an 18/30.
Brandy and Maksim Chmerkovskiy want to hold onto the top spot they got to last week, and she's putting a LOT of pressure on herself. Their song is "Holding Out for a Hero," and they seem to combine the intensity and the technique better than most of the couples so far tonight. Brandy looks stricken at the end, but I can't figure out why. Len says Maks is his hero and that this was the dance of the night. Bruno says that tango really rocked and compares Brandy to Tina Turner in "Mad Max." Carrie Ann says she had goosebumps watching her develop her wings and fly. But she did see a few missteps, though overall, she is impressed. Scores: 8-9-9, for a 26/30, the highest score of the night.
Now it's dance marathon time. Kurt and Anna are first out, getting 4 points. Bristol and Mark are next, getting 5. Next out are Rick and Cheryl, getting 6 points. This leaves four couples, who now have free rein on the stage. Kyle and Lacey are out, getting 7 points. Audrina and Tony are next, with 8 points. This leaves Jennifer and Derek and Brandy and Maks. Jennifer and Derek get 9 points, and Brandy and Maks are the dance marathon champs, even more impressive since they were the last to perform, too, and didn't get any recovery time.
What did you think about the night's events?