Dancing With the Stars recap: Studding for Finals

The three finalists perform "favorite dances" and SUPER-SIZE freestyles -- plus, the Fab Five! McKayla is impressed...
Ep. 18 | Aired Nov 26, 2012

IT'S NOT A BIRD Melissa Rycroft (pictured) and Kelly Monaco both attempted fierce acrobatics in their super-sized freestyles in the hopes of barely impressing McKayla.

ABC

Kelly Monaco and Valentin Chmerkovskiy: 29.5 paso doble + 29.5/30 freestyle = 59/60 At this point Val's even rehearsing shirtless, which just spoils us, especially when his partner must shimmy that bejeweled bolero jacket onto his steamy shoulders for the paso doble. It's like dude, where's your chest? And his chest is right there, heaving, waiting, lying in heat. Last week's "surfer flamenco" has ruined us all. I wonder -- had that spectacular pool party display had been Kelly and Val's freestyle, would it have made more of a (#sparklebarf) splash, do you think? I mean, even though the flamenco was kind of weird? We'll never know.

Anyway, the pair lost their gripping during their "favorite dance," the paso doble -- and they even bothered to show it in slow-motion during Carrie Ann's critique. Nevertheless, Kelly and Val earned two 10s from Len and Bruno. 'Tis the performance finale after all! I'd forgotten how amusing Val's final "I found a dead person and kissed her" pose was, so for that reason alone I'm glad they reprised Put a Bolero On It.

After solemnly discussing the terms of their showmance for the 53rd time this season while slumped against a brick wall at juuuuuuust the right time in the afternoon to produce maximum sunlit sexiness, Val and Kelly fortified themselves with a shared lollipop (EWWWW.com) and got to work on a Dirty Dancing-inspired freestyle set to "(I've Had) The Time of My Life." (IN BED.) It was well-executed, featuring Valolin (Val on the violin, playing for real) and some very impressive aerial fabric tricks by Kelly. Against many freestyles from past seasons, this might have been the night's standout -- but Shawn and Derek's Tumbling With the Goddesses did overshadow Val and Kelly's romantic effort by the end of the show.

Brooke popped the question on everyone's minds just as I was certain one of the clear plastic pouches in her dress was about to burst and release a potentially toxic ether -- "Is this showmance? Is this romance?" Ha! Good one, BBC. Too bad they didn't answer. Kelly was all evasive, like "There's still another day of interviewing, so...."

Eh, I'm over it. You know I love Val, and I think Kelly has more than proven herself as a technical contender. But the couple's been relying almost entirely on Their Chemistry as practically a third member of their partnership. Come on now. Two's a pool party. Three's a big ol' cloud of who cares anymore.

Why am I being so harsh right now? Their freestyle really was gorgeous. Gospel choir! Cleavage money shot! And I owe it all to youuuuuu.... [boobs boobs boobs, boobs boobs boobs, boobs].

Cheers to Val for reenacting the Patrick Swayze/Jennifer Grey "upper arm finger graze" -- a moment almost as iconic to Dirty Dancing as Val's nudity has become to Dancing With the Stars itself!

NEXT: Shawn and Derek break the rules on purpose. Standing O?


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