Sunday, October 23, 2016

DWTS S023, Week 5: Stars Get Emotional in 'Memorable Year' Week

60-piece orchestra and pro dancers
The ode to My Most Memorable Year kicks off with a truly memorable sight: a 60-piece orchestra in the ballroom at Dancing with the Stars. And the dance (to "My Heart Will Go On") kicks off with our favorite lovers (Sasha and Emma) swirling around the ballroom, soon joined by the other pros. Just wonderful. (Choreographed by Mandy Moore, of course.)

My Most Memorable Year is always a dicey week at DWTS. Sometimes, it's a sobby mess of emotion. Other times, it's more like, "Oh, you got that show that year. Yay, you." But usually, no matter what, we get to see an emotional side of the stars that they wouldn't otherwise access in their dances, and the dances from this point forward are always the better for it.

Maureen and Artem. Courtesy of Just Jared.
Maureen and Artem. What a revelation! I just love watching them. Their wedding day foxtrot was lyrical and beautiful. Nice choreography, nice movement, just a joy to watch.

And who knew (I didn't.) that Maureen McCormick had a cocaine addiction? But look at her now! Her and her loving husband. Just amazing. As Carrie Ann said, "You are slow and steady. But you know what they say about slow and steady? It wins the race."

Maureen seems to have the most amazing husband, and they seem very much in love. The whole thing even brought stoic Artem to tears (and btw, Artem, tears are a GOOD THING).

Family usually plays heavily in successful Most Memorable Years. But sometimes, it's sports. This one was both. Calvin Johnson (aka Detroit Lion "Megatron")'s most Memorable Year was the year he "broke Jerry Rice's record." To football fans, I'm sure all of that means something.

They also showed how when he did this, he walked off the field to hand the football to his dad.

When they do the jazz dance, to a Motown song, to Megatron's surprise, he is thrown the ball (in the dance) by Jerry Rice (the actual Jerry Rice), and he then leaves the floor to hand it to his dad. So there was a very nice symmetry there. Also, Calvin had never before met the actual Jerry Rice, so that was nice to see.

These two (Calvin and Lindsay) are definitely a couple to watch. Lindsay just keeps getting better and better.

And Erin Andrews, God bless her, is such the perfect host when they have football players on. I'm not a football fan, but you could tell that she handled the appropriateness of these two football giants quite well. Jerry Rice (apparently, I don't remember this; it was back in Season 02) had been on DWTS previously. And once you're DWTS family, you're always family.

Jana's Most Memorable Year saga was guaranteed to be a tear-jerker. Nothing tops an abusive ex. The year she chose was the year she had her baby (this year). Gleb and Jana did a contemporary dance, which ended with a cute picture of her baby. Awwww....

Then, some pros did some dancing to showcase their upcoming tour (around Valentine's Day in LA). Tom has a bit of fun with the title. DWTS upcoming tour.

As much as I love the addition of the Charleston to this show, I equally LOATHE the addition of so dang much contemporary to this show. Really really hate it. The judges, however, loved this piece from Cheryl and Ryan. There was a nice bit at the end, when Ryan is standing alone on a gold podium with gold flakes twinkling down on him, bathed in gold light. Very atmospheric and nice.

Laurie and Val's paso doble was, as usual, quite wonderful. But the judges hit on what may be their Achilles heel: lack of connection. Since she's 16 and never had a (romantic) relationship, how could she possibly do that whole connection thing with Val? But, at this point, that is their only weakness. (Costumes, as you can see, were gorgeous.)

Marilu and Derek had a breakthrough this week. She owned up to the fact that she was afraid of him, and wanted to be perfect for him. (Part of what was making her so tense.) They obviously worked through that, because she was much more free-flowing and fluid in this week's Viennese waltz.

And there were tears. Marilu was talking about her mother's death (just before she got Taxi). Ryan Lochte had been talking about his happiest moment (when he first broke a world record in 2008), and teared up. Lotsa crying by the celebs this week. Some of it good... some of it...

Let's just say that I don't think Amber Rose is emotionally cut out to do DWTS. "It's hard!" "It's so much harder with heels on!" and on and on... Her favorite year was the year she had her son, but the song she chose she wanted to be an anthem for women... um... and moms... *eyeroll*

James and Sharna continue to be one of the couples I look forward to every week. This tango was amazing. The fact that he suffered a major life-threatening injury (2015) and is here doing these incredible dances is astoninshing.

Well, yes, I know I said I hate contemporary. On the other hand, Contemporary gave us this. Her year was 2013, the year her father passed, and the year she got her big show. Sasha, in this dance, portrayed her dad. It was beautiful and poignant.

Sasha does such amazing and innovative choreography with Terra. Just a joy to see. And the angelic version of "Stand By Me" was stunning, too.

No elimination this week.

1. Terra and Sasha (contemporary)
2. James and Sharna (tango)
3. Laurie and Val (paso doble)
4. Marilu and Derek (Viennese waltz)
5. Maureen and Artem (foxtrot)

1. Jana and Gleb
2. Ryan and Cheryl
3. Amber and Maks


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