Sunday, November 22, 2015

DWTS Season 21 Week 8: Inspire This!

This week on Dancing with the Stars was My Inspirational Hero, or My Favorite Icon, or something. (Lame). Andy chose Stevie Wonder, though he really brought it back around to his mom (even though the tear-jerking parents week was earlier in the season). This dance (to "Isn't She Lovely?") actually had further resonance since Allison had announced earlier that she's pregnant.

They ended up getting voted off this week. So I'm sure she's a superwoman, but nonetheless, I'm glad she could now rest up and not do these strenuous dances every week.

Carlos chose Marc Antony, who taught him salsa (sort of).

Apparently, he has never done a salsa in his life. He made a big deal out of this, saying it over and over again in his package. Which was pretty confusing to me, cause I know he has done about 1000 Viennese waltzes in his life... To say nothing of zipping around, doing Argentine tangos all day long. What you are talking about, man? You've never done ANY of these dances, right?

Dunno. Maybe he meant it because as a Latino, he should have done 1000 salsas. As Marc Antony said to him, "It's in your blood, man!" Once he whipped his shirt off, I believed him.

Also, the lifts Witney had in this were stunning, not the least because it looked like he was damn near dropping her a few times.

Our train hero chose a war hero, Chris Kyle (whom I choose to see as a murdering savage and have no respect for, but to each his own).

Alexa went all Biblical and chose David (of David and Goliath fame) as her hero. Alexa, at this point, is my favorite to win, but she does seem to have a lot of insecurities. But I just love everything about them. I love the grand scope of the execution of his dances. I love his choreography. I love the music he chooses (Mark Ballas always has the best music selections; Coldplay, and we know LA loves Coldplay). I loved the little kiltie thing he was wearing. I love Alexa, fighting through her own demons with every dance.

Yeah, this was my favorite dance of the night. Argentine tango to fight Biblical demons. Rock on, Mark and Alexa!

Nick veered us back into the emotional territory, with another stunning dance, this time picking his wife as his Inspirational Icon, and talking about how they've been trying to have a baby, and now she's pregnant. So Sharna did a fabulously choreographed contemporary dance which illuminated that. (The picture above is how it ends, with him patting her baby bump.)

There was also this emotional moment, after he pulled his wife out of the crowd, and brought her backstage. They learned the sex of their baby. Can you guess what it is?

So which one of these will be the Mirror Ball winner? Any guesses?

I am predicting that it's going to be one of these, but it for damn sure isn't going to be the "best dancer in the competition" (self-proclaimed).

What Ms. Tamar doesn't understand is that this competition is won on two things: 1. the scores of the judges and 2. the voting from the fans. So you can get all 10s consistently from the judges, if WE don't like you, you don't win. That's it. Valentin knows this, painfully, having seen the backlash from his brother Maks saying whatever he felt like it into a microphone seasons ago.

Because what the fans respect the most is what Valentin now oozes (way more than Maks ever did): GRACIOUSNESS. When he won the Mirror Ball finally, his first reaction was to face the camera (and the fans) and say: THANK YOU. Cause he knows.

But it was essential to backpedal this tremendous faux pas. So in their package, Val says something like: "I slept on it, thought about it, and yes, you are the best, cause all of my partners are the best."

But, dear Valentin, the point is: she shouldn't have said it, and once said, you can't take it back. You have to ride that humility train all the way to hoisting the Mirror Ball, or you don't win it. Simple as that.

I will say this. I believe that this season, because of other projects he's doing or whatever, Valentin is surely the best dancer in this competition. He has never been more electrifying to watch. If not for the Tamar meltdown, he could've been hoisting another Mirror Ball (IMHO).

But no, no, no. For me personally (don't know how many other fans), she lost me with that comment. Done.

Her Inspirational Icon was ostensibly her sister, Toni (Braxton), but she didn't really speak to that. The music they chose for their paso doble felt like a giant FU to the fans. Tough. I was born this way. (Lady Gaga's) Fine. You go keep your arrogance that you were born with. GOODBYE.

OK. I'll turn over my cards. Here who I think is actually going to win the Mirror Ball.

Not only because Derek is arguably the best dancer in the competition, but also the most creative with those Freestyle dances. Part of me would like to see Sharna and Nick win (because Sharna has yet to win a Mirror Ball, and she's been doing stunning work all season, and last season, for that matter). But I think Bindi and Derek are going to pull it out because Bindi is so darn cute, she's the world's sweetheart and she also does all these punishing dances that Derek gives her, without missing a beat. She's been consistently amazing.

It's also kind of funny to me, how at the beginning, there may be one who stands out (and certainly Bindi did), but many seem equally good. But then, there are always things which derail people. Their own ego, their body, their schedule, whatever.

Break a leg, Bindi!

Oh, for this particular week, as soon as she said Grace Kelly was her Inspirational Icon, I knew which dance they were going to be dancing to. They did not disappoint.

1. Mark and Alexa (Argentine tango)
2. Carlos and Witney (salsa)
3. Bindi and Derek (foxtrot)
4. Val and Tamar (paso doble)

1. Bindi and Derek
2. Nick and Sharna
3. Carlos and Witney
4. Alek and Lindsay

So they had this other nonsense on this show. I really hate this crap. Some judges hooha, and you get extra points, blah blah.

This was a "Dance Off." I'll spare you all the boring, time-filler details. The only relevant detail is that the top couple (by judges' points) were given immunity and couldn't be voted off (also didn't have to participate in this lame dance-off thing). That couple was Nick and Sharna, but like last year (when Derek and his partner won it), they weren't in danger of being voted off anyway.

This was the best moment of the Dance Off, when Carlos spontaneously picked up his competitor, Bindi, and all were laughing. That, truly captures to me what Dancing with the Stars really is. Love this picture.

So, goodbye Allison. I love your dancing and choreography. I look forward to the day when you finally win the Mirror Ball. But this was not that time.

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