So…ABC decided that it would be a great plan to have our celebrity dancers – of varying skill levels and dance training (yes, one of them is a pro and some are, like us, incapable of walking from Point A to Point B without breaking something) - dance with not one pro, not two pros (as in a Trio Dance) but with three pros. This might be good, but probably won’t be, but we do get to see Tristan dance a few times, so that makes it a brilliant plan. Here is what we think will happen, assuming any of the information we have is correct. With recent developments, expect plenty of snarkiness and sarcasm coming from us. It’s how we roll. And it’s gonna be legendary and epic too – so say Maks and Val.
In no particular order, here are your Week 5 dances.
Aly and Mark – Samba with Tony and Witney – Uh, Tony and Witney? Okay. Here’s what we think. We don’t care what some of the critics said about their contemporary (meaning what some fans of other teams and some bloggers said). We thought Aly and Mark did just what they should have last week in order to move to the top of the leaderboard, and get this – we even predicted it. Whodathunkit? So if Aly loosens up and puts on a happy face, and they nail the side by side choreography (which they should because she can learn choreography, steps, and precision), they will receive some high marks. We had definite ideas on this that included some 10s, but then we heard the pro combination – the very tall Tony and also Witney from the troupe. It doesn’t seem like a logical Samba fit to us, and we think it will mess with the ability to hit the synchronized parts. The usually big mouthed pros and troupe members (you know who they are) just weren't spewing forth any information this week so we were left with fantasies of a Tristan/Chelsie Design a Dance sequel with Aly and Mark sprinkled in there for spice. Okay, we love Tony, and we are just pleased as punch that they didn't put Maks in another dance but this is not the best fit for Aly and Mark, and we know next to nothing about Witney (Note to SWAT: stop spelling her name “WHITNEY” on MML) – the most important fact is that she danced something (currently a phantom dance that's taunting our Tristan starved eyes) with Tristan which was recorded to supposedly air (per Witney) last week (it didn’t) or per Tristan, this Tuesday (we hope). Score: 25
Kellie and Derek – Foxtrot with Anna and Henry – We think this Foxtrot will be good but not great. Assuming that they stick with the rules of the ballroom, and you never know with Derek’s choreography, they should do well, but throwing two more pros into the mix probably will not help them. This shouldn’t hurt more than a point or two, but we don’t see it as making them stand out in a good way. It is beneficial in that it is permissible to break hold in Foxtrot so Kellie can probably hold her own with Anna in that regard – as long as the choreography is not over the top, but keep in mind that this is Kellie's first ballroom dance in five weeks. That does concern us a little. All we can see coming our way is a Star Trek themed Foxtrot, especially since Derek and Mark have choreographed a Sci-Fi themed opening number for Tuesday. Forget that for a moment. Let’s get back to the Foxtrot and breaking the rules. Derek has done it many times and usually doesn’t get away with it from our judging voice of reason (Len). Stop and think for a second - remember the Bollywood Samba? Innovative? You bet. Samba? Not so much. It was more of a freestyle. There was also the non-Quickstep Quickstep from Season 10 and a few more even from as recently as Season 15. Good thing Anna is a tough cookie and one of the rare ballroom purists so we have hope. But then we remember that Derek is in L.A. working on this epic number, and Kellie is touring and not in L.A. Derek said he is having trouble with the choreography. Henry said they are doing something different. We are getting a bad feeling about this, and our prediction is a Len meltdown when it turns out to be something other than instructed. Chances are we will see either a non-Foxtrot Foxtrot or a mix up the dancing of the pros/celebrities to screw with everybody’s head. Sigh. We’re too old for this. Score: 26
Zendaya and Val – Argentine Tango with Maks and Anna - The self-proclaimed sex-on-a-stick is dancing with his baby brother and Zendaya. We love, love, love Anna – but we don’t recall seeing Anna and Maks dance together too frequently, and she is going to be dwarfed by Zendaya. We personally think more evenly matched pros size-wise would make it more visually appealing, but what do we know? Argentine Tango is a tricky one, especially since it's so sensual, and to add to the mix, Val has never done this dance. How does that happen? With all of those very sharp moves, we’re thinking Zendaya might have a little trouble with some of that, and we don’t see Val simplifying the choreography. Remember when the judges called Kellie’s moves “staccato” or “clipped”? This is what we see a lot of with Val, and we’re not sure Zendaya can pull off the Argentine Tango technique. We do think Maks will have a very heavy hand into the choreography. We have to always keep in mind that Anna could school both Maks and Val if she really wanted to, but she most likely will not. Maybe they will reverse the roles and Zendaya will lead and dance side by side with Maks instead of Anna. Nothing would be too surprising. We don’t think there will be any 10s, although it will still be okay. Score 25
Jacoby and Karina – Jive with Maks and Anna – This is going to tell us a lot. Karina is brilliant with the Jive – just remember the trio last season with Sasha and Apolo, but Jacoby is no Apolo, and this has to be sharp and fast with those knees lifted way up for the Jive. He’s quick but he’s not that quick. Donald Driver did an okay Trio Jive with Karina and Peta and even scored 28 (which we think was high), but Jacoby is nowhere near that level yet, and he has to match Maks step by step. Uh oh... We also don't see how the dynamic with Maks is going to be on this one. That's a lot of testosterone. Don’t forget that it’s supposed to be epic and legendary. That’s what they keep telling us. Score: A very generous 24 which should probably be more like a 22.
Ingo and Kym – Cha Cha with Tony and Emma– This could be good. Both are tall guys, and Tony can help Ingo with the logistics. We see another baby step forward for Ingo and Kym this week. There's not a whole lot to say about this team. The two couples are a perfect pairing, and Tony and Emma have a similar dynamic to that of Ingo and Kym. No drama - just a lot of hard work and a pleasant learning experience all around. Score: 24
Victor and Lindsay – Viennese Waltz with Tristan and Emma – We like this formula, and we like that it’s ballroom because Victor is better at ballroom than Latin. He received 6’s in Week 1 with a Foxtrot, and we think he will do well here with Tristan helping him through the synchronization of steps. They won’t go overly complicated where there will be more opportunity to mess up. They will also score major brownie points if they can get their VW timing down. It's one of those dances that can be gorgeous - particularly when there is more than one couple. We also haven't seen Tristan do a Viennese Waltz so they get an extra point or five if Tristan wears white tie and tails. We do think this will be a good dance; it might not be as complex or as intricate as others have done on the show, but it will be decent. Score: 23
Sean and Peta – Quickstep with Tristan and Chelsie – Sigh. We just can’t get behind Sean and Peta at all, but we are going to try, given that they are dancing with Tristan and Chelsie. The tricky thing about these two couples is that Tristan and Chelsie are clean and wholesome. Sean tries to give us the image of being wholesome and then there is Peta, whose costume choices are sometimes straight from the Bordellos ‘R Us catalog. Tristan will help Sean straighten out a few things, but we still think Sean will have problems with the side-by-side synchronization. It’s possible Tristan will simplify that part for Sean, and that should make him (Sean) look less awkward. Sometimes quality is better than quantity, but Peta indicated in interviews that she would be pushing Sean very hard this week. Our hope for the week is that Peta just puts some clothes on. And that Sean doesn’t annoy us. And that Tristan wears white tie and tails…oh wait, that was for the Viennese Waltz, but we wouldn’t mind it for both. Score: 23
Andy and Sharna – Paso Doble with Emma and Sasha – We think this is going to be a tough week for Andy. Emma and Sasha are a great duo to pair with Andy and Sharna, and chances are Sharna will have some things planned to divert the focus from the footwork but this is a powerful dance, and we can see Andy having a lot of trouble bringing the strength of the matador as well as the precision of the footwork. Sharna is smart because she keeps things very creative, and Sasha, is an amazing teacher, and we loved how he worked with Apolo and Karina, so anything is possible.We hope that this will help build Andy's confidence. He seems like he's in this to be inspired and better himself which is why he's a fan favorite. Andy’s scores haven’t been great so far, and the judges have been overly kind with the compliments, but there hasn’t been a lot of change. We don’t see any improvement coming from last week’s score of 21. Score: 21
D.L. and Cheryl – Tango – Chelsie and Sasha – Well, Sasha is earning his paycheck this week, but he is the perfect pro to work with D.L. Other than Tristan, we don’t think there is a better natural teacher. With patience all over the place and a wicked sense of humor, he is the perfect pro to get D.L. to his best. The problem is that Samba is one of the hardest dances to pull off because there are often problems with natural hip movement. You never know though...we'll see what Sasha can get out of him Score: 20
Who is going home? In spite of everything, we think it will finally be Victor and Lindsay going home, regardless of performance. If not them, it will be Andy and Sharna. Sometimes the lack of voting power rears its ugly head and in spite of how much we like both of these couples, it’s probably going to be Arrivederci. (Note: Those are not the teams we want to go home - just the ones most likely in danger of hitting the road.)