— Only three couples are left on Dancing with the Stars, and tonight they dance a judges' choice round, then a freestyle. The scoring by the judges will also include a dance they'll do tomorrow – but the audience vote for tonight still counts for fifty percent of their final score.
First up are Laila and Maks. In rehearsals, Laila says the freestyle might be hard for her because they can't do a lot of lifts due to her size. First, though, they get to do the paso doble. The audience gives them a standing ovation, and Len says that while last time their paso lacked fire and passion, but "not tonight, old girl." (That means he thought it was excellent.) Bruno liked it even more, calling them "totally captivating," and says this was their best performance to date. Carrie Ann thinks every little thing about it was great too. Two tens and a nine for Laila & Maks.
Next up in the judges' choice round are Apolo & Julianne. Apolo's a little disappointed at last week's "too raunchy" vote from Len. Julianne brings in a hiphop choreographer to help them design their freestyle. In rehearsals, Apolo says their rumba "seems harder this time," which Julianne says is because it's more advanced, but she thinks he can handle it. They also get a standing ovation from the crowd. Bruno clearly loved them, and says they have a lot of chemistry and are a joy to watch. Carrie Ann, however, says they overperformed it a bit, and complains about Apolo's upper body. Len thinks it lacked romance, which causes Bruno and Len to bicker and move their chairs apart from each other. Len goes on to say it was too fast and hectic for a rumba, and that he didn't like Apolo's arms. However, they get two nines and a ten.
Joey & Kym will do the cha cha. But first, in rehearsals for the freestyle, Kym sometimes fears for her safety during the lifts. They cha cha, with Kym as a marionette at the beginning and end. It's full of tricks and showmanship…which of course the Dancing with the Stars judges pick on. Carrie Ann says Joey's clearly a crowd-pleaser, but there wasn't enough cha cha in that. Len agrees, saying it was "far too theatrical, not enough content." Bruno actually agrees with Len, calling their dance "strangely odd and not quite there." Two nines and an eight from the judges on this one.
Next, it's the freestyle round. The announcer wrongly calls out Laila and Maks in the paso doble again (I think someone pushed the wrong button.) The dance ends with Laila ripping Maks' shirt open, after which she tears it right off him. Carrie Ann says she liked Laila's "fly-girl moves" but would have liked something more elegant. Len agrees that it was very good but he also would have liked to see more sophistication. Bruno says a little striptease never hurts, but overall he agrees with the other two. Laila's a little disappointed with this, as she wanted to show them something different; they get two nines and an eight.
Apolo & Julianne have been impatient to get to the freestyle, and with good reason. They really "bust a move." Len says that was great choreography, and included everything he wanted to see. Bruno says that "Apolo syndrome has infected the country," and that it was "so original, that's what freestyle should be." Carrie Ann is pretty much speechless, but clearly loved it. Tens all around for Apolo & Julianne.
Finally, Joey & Kym round off the night with a disco freestyle. They do approximately eight million lifts, because they can. Bruno says that "Mr Entertainment is back, doing what he does best, a hit parade of dance, I loved it." Carrie Ann thought it was wonderful, and loves how Joey's incorporated everything he's learned so far and still had such a great time. Len seems to have caught Bruno's metaphor disease, as he says that Joey "flew off the stage like Harry Potter on a Nimbus 2000." Len also wishes they had "more than a ten" to give, but as they don't, it's three tens for Joey & Kym.
Judges' scores after both rounds:
Apolo & Julianne: 28 + 30 = 58
Joey & Kym: 26 + 30 = 56
Laila & Maks: 29 + 26 = 55
Don't forget that the judges' scores will also incorporate a dance that the finalists will perform tomorrow on the two-hour Dancing with the Stars results show. The audience vote counts for half of the final score, so don't forget to vote at ABC.com. Comment below to share who you're voting for!
-Mel, BuddyTV Staff Columnist
Photo credit: ABC
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