There is some wardrobe madness going on on tonight's Dancing With the Stars -- even more than usual -- for performances of the rumba and the jive.
Ty Murray and Chelsie Hightower are first, and they've been assigned the jive. During rehearsal, they spend a lot of time trying to loosen Ty up (last week, his paso doble was compared to a Transformer, and rightly so, as even Ty agrees). To help him out, Chelsie has choreographed a Texas-two-step-themed jive, and that seems to help, but you can still see how hard he's trying to loosen up, which defeats the purpose a bit. Still, though, definitely better than last week. (On the wardrobe front, Chelsie is wearing a sequined tube top styled like the American flag.) Head judge Len Goodman is first with comments, and he says it's like Ty is bewildered and not sure what he's doing there, though he gives it his all every week. Bruno Tonioli says the line dancing was good, but "then the jive started." He says he went after it like a wild animal, but he really tried hard and he really is a gentleman. Carrie Ann Inaba says it was an exciting jive, but he never really found his footing. Scores: 6-6-6, for an 18/30.
Shawn Johnson and Mark Ballas are the first to do the rumba. In their rehearsal, Mark re-creates a prom for Shawn, who is missing her real one for the show. It was probably cooler than her real high school prom would have been. They do tend to get over-romanticized in movies. Their performance is truly gorgeous. Bruno says it was so beautifully pure it was "almost angelic ... and yet again I could sometimes see the hint of the devil." She says she should work on her hip action a little more. Carrie Ann says she could see the discomfort in her eyes at the beginning, but at the end she was more comfortable. Len says for him, sometimes the rumba is too hot, but he thought this was just right. I'm with Len. Scores: 8-9-9, for a 26/30.
Lawrence Taylor and Edyta Sliwinska are hoping to have fun with the jive, but at the beginning of rehearsals, LT is not having any fun at all. Then Warren Sapp comes to visit and give him a pep talk, after which Lawrence promises he is going to let it out in his performance. Regarding Edyta's bizarre sparkly legwarmer-like things, I can only say, "Ain't That Peculiar," which happens to be the song they are dancing to. I find her legwear so distracting that halfway through the performance, I have to rewind to the beginning to pay attention to the dancing. Lawrence seems like he is trying to loosen up, but there are these weird pauses in their choreography, and every time, you can tell he is thinking so hard about what exactly to do next. Carrie Ann says he got his groove back and that this was way more enjoyable to watch (though yes, they did a lift). Len says he showed off a lighter side of her personality, but he would like to see more lightness in his footwork. Bruno says he is alive and kicking and that "the reboot worked." He says LT was on beat all the way through the dance and never lost the beat. Scores: 7-7-8, for a 22/30, their best score yet.
Melissa Rycroft and Tony Dovolani hope to recover from a semi-disastrous paso last week with a romantic rumba. And they definitely seem to have fewer problems than last week. Len says it was clean and precise and featured interesting choreography that he liked. His only criticism is to make the dances slightly more earthy and less balletic. Bruno says her body can assume incredible shapes, but he wants to see more of "Melissa the Maneater." Carrie Ann says she was impressed by the emotional quality of the dance and says in future dances she should not be afraid of pushing her hip action a little further. Scores: 9-9-9, for a 27/30.
Lil Kim and Derek Hough are doing the jive, and she's (sort of) dressed like a police officer, and he's (sort of) dressed like a prisoner. Heh. They dance like crazy to "Jailhouse Rock," and it's a ton of fun (though I was a little concerned we were going to have a bit of a wardrobe malfunction with Lil Kim's lil top -- and in fact, the edge of a pastie is showing by the end of the performance. Yikes!). Bruno says he is guilty, "Arrest me, frisk me, take me!" Carrie Ann just stand up and screams and gives her a hug. She gestures so wildly that one of her diamond bracelets flies off. Len says it was fun and had energy, but that Derek got so caught up with the story that it didn't have enough jive. Scores: 10-8-10, for a 28/30. 8?? Come on, Len!
Steve-O and Lacey Schwimmer are taking on the rumba, and Lacey is basically wearing underwear and a robe for her costume. In rehearsal, they are concerned because they have such a brother-and-sister relationship. Yeah, so that basically makes their whole dance awkward -- and the underwear-as-costume isn't really helping the situation. Carrie Ann says there was something oddly mesmerizing by the performance, and she thinks it's because of his honesty and commitment, though, yes, they have to work on his grace. Len says you can't confuse movement with dancing, and there wasn't any hip action or footwork at all. "It was no good," he says. Bruno says, "Thank God for Racy Lacey. ... But the dancing is bad." Scores: 7-4-5, for a 16/30.
Gilles Marini and Cheryl Burke have to discard much of the sexiness and seriousness for the jive this week. Well, not all of it, since they are dressed in leather and ... mesh, I guess. Their dance is super fast and intricate (and since they are performing to "Dance, Dance," it doesn't really have a 1950s vibe at all, but that's not their fault). It seems like maybe he loses the beat a few times -- you can see Bruno in the background counting the beat, which he always does, but it's way more obvious this time for some reason. Len says there were a lot of the qualities of the jive, but he "went a little bit wrong" on part of the dance right in front of him. He says it's a little frantic. Bruno says it was so fast and furious, but that if he had gone faster, he would have been at the speed of light. He says because of the speed, he loses part of the sharpness of the steps. Carrie Ann says he showed that he could be showy as well as sexy, though she says his arms were a little odd. Scores: 9-8-9, for a 26/30.
Chuck Wicks and Julianne Hough are wearing a lot of lace, though of the two of them, only Julianne is wearing thigh-high lace stockings. They were concerned about not having chemistry, but that wasn't a problem. Bruno says he would like some more of that, please, and Carrie Ann cheers along with him. He adds that Chuck upped the raunch factor, and it was a step in the right direction. Carrie Ann says it was the most passionate and sexy number of the night, but yes, they do need to work on the footwork a little. Len says parts of the dance were more suitable for the bedroom than the ballroom. He adds that Chuck has some good lines and then bad lines, and it's confusing. Scores: 8-7-8, for a 23/30.
What did you think? Ty and Steve-O are in trouble, I think. Though I've certainly thought that of Steve-O before and been wrong.