James Maslow enters wearing a tuxedo with no shirt, because he's no dummy and neither is Peta Murgatroyd. Mark Ballas enters with his right arm in a sling - wonder what that means for his dance with Candace Cameron Bure tonight? Candace (with a ridiculous topknot), still, after this many weeks of competition, looks terrified.
Head judge Len Goodman is trying to tell host Tom Bergeron what's going to happen tonight, but the audience is so loud I have no idea what was said. Oh, good, looks like there's no guest judge tonight. There shouldn't be on finals.
James Maslow & Peta Murgatroyd: Tango
Ah, I think this is what Len was saying - the couples are dancing the dance style with their regular partner that they danced with their "switchup" partner back in Week 4.
This is a weirdly non-melodic song to be a tango. James and Peta go for a full on kiss right in the middle of the routine. Way to squash those rumors about whether or not you're dating, guys.
Len says it was tight and that James gave it his all. Bruno Tonioli calls him passionate and focused. When Bruno mentions the kiss, Peta covers her face in embarrassment. Carrie Ann Inaba compliments him on his butt being tucked under, but she's critical of his tense appearance.
Scores: Carrie Ann: 9; Len: 10; Bruno: 10
Meryl Davis & Maksim Chmerkovskiy: Argentine Tango
Maks has got to be happy they're getting this on the night of finals since this is his favorite dance. They're practicing an interesting leap in rehearsal where Meryl runs at Maks then spins mid-air right before he catches her so that her legs wrap around his waist from the front while she's facing forward.
They get in a really terrific traveling footwork sequence, followed by some fun flips. The routine ends with an elegant lift/spin and then the drag-across-the-floor move. Bruno is comparing the evolution on their dancing to a concept album. Carrie Ann says they improved on perfection, with the added chemistry Meryl and Maks bring to the routine.
Scores: Carrie Ann: 10; Len: 10; Bruno: 10
Candace Cameron Bure & Mark Ballas: Quickstep
THey're showing rehearsal footage and Candace is getting increasingly frustrated and Mark calls her "dramatic" so she leaves the room and cries. Then during the dress rehearsal, it appears that Mark further aggravated his already injured rotator cuff. He's taken by ambulance to the hospital, but when we get back to the ballroom, he's taken off the sling and Tom tells us an MRI cleared Mark to dance tonight. SO NOW WHO'S BEING DRAMATIC? Sling = red herring.
Carrie Ann says she was totally impressed, but Candace's shoulders were a little up. Len says this was the toughest dance and says that with the terrible week she's had, she did good. Bruno calls it a great improvement.
Scores: Carrie Ann: 9; Len: 9; Bruno: 9
Good; at least no one gave her a 10. That dance was good, but not on par with Meryl & Maks.
Amy Purdy & Derek Hough: Salsa
During rehearsal, Amy's back is giving her trouble again, spasming so badly it's got her in tears.
It starts right off with a lift, which I didn't know was allowed in salsa. Is it OK, because it's the finals? I'm sure Carrie Ann will tell us. Another lift and it's a little rough into it, but she comes out of it perfectly.
Len calls it "bright, colorful, and fabulous." Bruno yells out, "Flashy, exhilarating, and flamboyant," then pauses and says, "I'm not talking about myself." Carrie Ann can't talk, she just laughs. Carrie Ann says every week Amy does things she doesn't think were possible.