Aly Raisman and Mark Ballas: 27/30 (52/60 total): Boston girl Aly is understandably still shaken from the marathon bombings and dedicated their foxtrot to the victims. How dare she be distracted during practice, when Mark was executing such attention-grabbing stunts as demonstrating 'I'm having fun!' facial expressions, wearing terrible penguin pants, and seducing Aly with lines like "If I went to a pet shop and was gonna buy a kitten, I would buy you. Sex kitten." But she powered through and seemed fairly relaxed in the foxtrot.
There was a real joy about this dance, despite the cries for help from Aly's costume, which couldn't decide if it wanted to be a shimmery t-shirt or a frothy ball gown. I think sleeves should be outlawed in general, but especially short, capped sleeves, which are always less flattering than no sleeves, no matter who you are.
Zendaya and Valentin Chmerkovskiy: 29/30 (51/60 total) Their cha cha came first in the show, so two 10s right away were very "huh?" considering the episode had no momentum. That's always weird. But when I rewatched this dance post-show, the footwork and especially Zendaya's three-toned fringe were quite fabulous. I enjoyed their matching gold-studded armbands and the thrill of wondering if Val's bulging bicep would cause his to snap right off. I'm guessing the judges knew they'd be scoring Team Paso lower than Team Samba and padded Zendaya's scores accordingly. "I feel sorry for whoever has to come after you," commented Carrie Ann. So…everyone, then. Buzzkill!
I'm pretty sure tonight's nightmare will involve Val scolding me, "It's not gonna work, 'cause you don't have tone in your body." Shudder. Hey, I'll take it.
Sean Lowe and Peta Murgatroyd: 21/30 (46/60 total) Instead of treating us to more footage of Sean and Tristan's burgeoning love affair, DWTS showed The Bachelor meticulously gluing a gem to Peta's heel and, during practice, attempting hip action while wearing a sassy knotted shirt. Not bad. Character development is key. Especially when the character can't dance!
For their royal blue (in my opinion Peta's best color) samba, Sean cranked up the partial nudity and ditched his open jacket early on so that we might focus on his pecs and somewhat disappointing lack of armpit hair (really? this is how my life turned out?) instead of his lack of technique. He has no sense of rhythm and I really don't think this dance was better than Andy's.
"Look on the bright side -- you can always get a job as a stripper!" cried Bruno. I smell a third reality series for suddenly-single Sean! Oh, no, that's just his pits.
Hidden gem: I may be delirious, but upon first glance, Karina reminded me of Edyta here.
NEXT: Bingo, Ingo!