Sunday, October 25, 2015

DWTS Season 21 Week 5: Switch Partners and Blow Our Minds

When last we left Alexa Vega, she was upset because missing a few steps gave her a low score. Mark Ballas, her partner, was hinting that she might be kicked out soon.

But this week: THIS! Holy moly. (But we'll get to that.)

DWTS Week 5: I love every single thing people are wearing here. How often does that happen?
First, my condolences to Tom Bergeron. To my knowledge, after 10 years of watching Dancing with the Stars, I don't ever remember Tom Bergeron missing a single episode for any reason. He missed last week (Alfonso Ribeiro filled in for him) because his father died. But he's back this week. What professionalism! Wow. They don't make 'em like that anymore.

So, Tom is back, Erin looks hot as ever (fabulous red sequined dress) and says "I Love You" to Tom on camera. (Awesome. Loved that!) And oh, Maksim Chmerkovskiy is in one of the judges' chairs. Yay for that! (He's an excellent judge, btw, the perfect foil for Bruno's antics, wish he were on all the time. Besides he's also smoking hot sitting there. Love his new long hair.)

This week was already emotionally charged, from frame one. And this week, if you haven't garnered this from the first image with Alexa and Derek, is Switch-Up Week.

For those unaware of the blissful joy of Switch-Up Week, it goes like this. Just about the time that the stars are getting used to dancing with their pro partners, they SWITCH! and get NEW partners. Fun!

The only drama of Switch-Up Week is that originally Mark was paired with Bindi, and Val with Paula. Something (DUN-DUN-DUNNN) happened, and somehow, instead, Mark got switched to Paula and Val to Bindi. Not sure what exactly, but I'm quite sure that Paula's a damn handful. So thank you, Mark, for being a professional.

There was, in Switch-Up Week, a lot of pushing boundaries that aren't otherwise pushed. Emma, for example (who's paired with teen Hayes this season, and is usually paired with really old guys), got to perform her first rumba (which Erin called, "the hottest rumba she's ever seen"). Andy performed a steamy Argentine tango with Sharna, showing a sexual/sensual side that we haven't yet seen with him and Allison. The Mark-Paula pairing was interesting because we got to see a sexual side of her that Louis hadn't really been bringing out. Although I could really do without ever having to see Paula lift her skirt again, thank you.

But seeing Mark Ballas as a "pervy milkman" as Tom called him, was really cute and funny, since Mark Ballas doesn't often show his humourous side.

Personally, I discovered another thing. That some people, whom I really don't like, I just ignore when they are with their other partners, cause I like the partners so much. For example, I really dislike Taymar (but love Val), and really could just ignore what she did with new partner Louis. Simliarly, while I love watching Alek, I really don't like Lindsay much as a dance pro, so her dance with Carlos kinda did nothing for me personally, though the judges seemed bowled over by it.

I really love watching Sharna dance, and have loved what she's been doing with Nick as her partner so far, but I realized that I really feel like he's kind of leaden overall, and didn't get very thrilled by his dance with Witney.

Miche's Favorite Dances of Switch-Up Week, Week 5
1. Alexa and Derek (tango)
2. Andy and Sharna (Argentine tango)
3. Alek and Emma (steamy hot rumba)
4. Bindi and Val (cha cha)
5. Allison and Hayes (Viennese waltz)
6. Carlos and Lindsay (quickstep)
7. Nick and Witney (paso doble)

Courtesy of and
Let me skip out of the dances which less than thrilled me to the ones which blew my mind. And in this moment, let me take a second to compliment the amazing technicians they have working on Dancing with the Stars each week. The stagecraft of all the sets they are moving around between numbers is astonishing. The glorious beauty of the costumes every week (this season has just been spectacular with that). The camera magic that they are pushing the envelope with week after week (see the b/w effects above) are why this team wins Emmys for their work.

Just incredible, incredible stuff.

This number, with Alexa and Derek, does rank among one of the best dances I've seen on this show. Here's what I believe at this moment, too. (Alexa misunderstood what Alfonso Ribeiro said to her last week. What he meant was: both of them (her husband Carlos and she Alexa) cannot win. ONE of them can win, only one. And he was actually complimenting her by saying he thought it would be HER.) So let me say it again, since she didn't understand it.

I don't know that she'll WIN (for sure) at this point. But I do know that I'd put more money on her going further in this competition than Carlos. And this incredible tango she did with Derek proved why.

Look at this! Look at everything in this photograph. The stagecraft! The lighting! The costumes! The emotion of the dance. This is why I watch Dancing with the Stars every week. This kind of stuff is what makes this show one of the best shows on TV, and worth every moment of suffering through nonsense with Gary Busey. Cause there are also magical stunning moments like this. DWTS, to me, is a work of art. Cutting-edge, beautiful art. This week, none more than this dance.

The sexiest female dancer, Sharna, gave us a super steamy Argentine tango. Luckily, Maksim, king of Argentine tango (seriously, he is), was there to comment on it. Wondrous work by Sharna.

Steamiest dance of the night, though (one of the steamiest I've seen too) was between Alek and Emma. Emma, who never dances rumbas because her partners are "either too ripe or not ripe enough," thought Alek was "just right." And Alek, not a dancer, not even a person in entertainment who has to deal with kissing random people on screen and such, just a regular Joe, is obviously smitten with Miss Emma, and found it difficult to concentrate on this dance, without... well, showing his interest in her.

I suspect, though I don't know this for sure, that initially they had him in light colored trousers (to match the colors of her dress) and later, WISELY, changed that to black pants... just in case his "interest" showed a little too much. WOW, was it steamy.

Later, Erin pushed them to state on camera whether or not a date would come of this steaminess. Emma said yes. "Sure, why not?"

More on that later, hopefully. (Emma deserves a hot romance!)

I have so enjoyed watching Bindi Irwin, in all phases of her love affair with the press. She has been a joy to watch with Derek Hough, and last week's homage to her father was a special high point so far. She's kind of grown up before our eyes. So it was fitting that she bursts out of the Dad homage into the arms of another partner.

As Val said to her in the package, "You're not a little chicklet anymore, you're a grown-ass chick." And there was a maturity, a change in stature with her and her new partner Val. Loved their dance, whose chorus was "I'm ready for this." Apparently, yes, yes, you are.

Emma's tactic with teen Hayes has been to play up his boyish side. Allison's tactic this week was more to show him what a man could be. What a man should aspire to. And as someone who dreams of my future husband to someday be wearing gray tails in our wedding, this beautiful Viennese waltz was a sight to behold. (Again, kudos to the costume department. Cause: Wow!)

Please Get Off the Screen Now (Miche picks)
1. Paula
2. Taymar
3. Hayes
4. Andy
5. Carlos

Bindi and Derek
Alexa and Mark
Nick and Sharna
Andy and Allison
Alek and Lindsay

Next week: Top movie/memorable dances

No one was eliminated this week, cause it would just be weird to have people paired up with other people and then be kicked out with their partners, so the scores from last week and this one are going to be computed for the big boot next week.

Meanwhile, we swoon at this new (potential) couple...


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