This season's injury-rich tradition continued tonight, with last week's leader, Melissa, having to pull out of her performances only a few hours before the show because of a hairline fracture to her ribs. Because the judges had to base their scores on a rehearsal video — not even the dress rehearsal, as happened with Steve-O and Lacey in Week 2 — Melissa and Tony fell to last place, and Li'l Kim and Derek reclaimed the No. 1 spot after falling to No. 5 last week.
Tonight was a night of dancing for everyone, with performances in Latin, ballroom, and street, and two team dances, both set to hot songs and packed with crowd-pleasing stunts. Let's get down to the leaderboard, based on the combined scores from the individual and group dances.
Li'l Kim and Derek: This smokin' paso doble tied Kim's highest score of the season, earned two weeks ago with her jailbreak-theme jive. This booty-shakin' Barbie also has some dominatrix in her! Judges' score: 28/30, with group dance: 56/60
Gilles and Cheryl: Whoa, Gilles' bouffant 'do could have housed a family of cuckoos. And that's kinda how Gilles danced tonight, which is actually a good thing with the Lindy Hop. The dance was goofy, fun, and fast, and that's all I know to look for from this street dance! A small error in footwork cost him a point from each of the judges. I think Cheryl also scaled back her ambitious choreo and just let Gilles have fun, instead of packing in so many steps it looked a little crazy. Judges' score: 27/30, with group dance: 55/60
Shawn and Mark: After last week's fun, sassy cha-cha-cha, I would have thought a samba would be an easy follow-up. However, this one wasn't quite as confident, and Len docked her points for a lack of hip action, which she had last week in abundance. Judges' score: 27/30, with group dance: 52/60
Ty and Chelsie: To borrow from Carrie Ann, Ty proves that he is "the most inconsistent contestant I've ever seen" with a salsa that's actually got some swagger! You'd think hip action would be a weak point for this often-robotic dancer, but he actually busted out some serviceable booty-shakin'. It earned him a standing ovation from the audience and a tie for third place on the judges' leaderboard. Judges' score: 24/30, with group dance: 52/60
Chuck and Julianne: After a ground-breaking samba last week, Chuck followed it up with another confident cha-cha-cha. However, I've got to say, his dance face was almost as distracting as Li'l Kim's face contortions. It was akin to the expression a pervy construction worker would make should Julianne saunter by in that blue, fringed number. Judges' score: 26/30, with group dance: 51/60
Melissa and Tony: What a night for her to miss! Their jive hinted at greatness in the rehearsal footage, but unfortunately, they were both just going through the motions, not truly performing. Melissa lost her footing once, and cut short many of her motions. Also, I do believe that Melissa has had the same butt-crack reduction surgery that Edyta seems to have had, because, whoa those were some low-cut jeans! Judges' score: 21/30, with group dance: 46/60
On to the wild and crazy group dances!
Team Mambo consisted of the first, second, and third-highest scores from last week, which were Melissa and Tony, Chuck and Julianne, and Shawn and Mark. Lacey Schwimmer stepped in for Melissa, getting to dance the hottest solo since Beyonce's in the video for "Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It)," which provided the super-catchy beat for this number. Shawn and Mark had to follow that up, and in comparison to Lacey, Shawn just looked tentative. Things heated back up when the men pulled the women's flouncy skirts off to reveal — you guessed it — nothing but leotards! Lacey, Julianne, and Shawn brought up the temperature with some Beyonce-style shimmying, each flaunting their own distinct brand. The finale was pure hilarity. I'm still laughing. Man-o-tards, white tights, and wait for it — dress socks! Not sexy at all, but completely hilarious. And Carrie Ann? It's SUPPOSED to be distracting! How can that not be? Team score: 25/30
Team Tango were by no means the underdogs, with season-high scorers Gilles and Cheryl, two-time leaders Li'l Kim and Derek, and Mr. Most Improved, Ty and his podna, Chelsie. This formidable six-pack picked up right where Team Mambo left off, with cheap thrills opening, instead of closing, their number. The bare chests of Gilles and Ty are enough to make any girl weak in the knees, but Kim maintained her composure between them. Ironically, tonight's leader was the only one to make a noticeable mistake in the group number, missing some steps in her and Derek's solo, making her the possible weakest link. For the closing sequence, this team was in the best unison I've seen from a group dance. Hypnotically beautiful! Team score: 28/30
Tune in tomorrow night for the results! Len predicted after Ty and Chelsie's salsa that if Ty couldn't pull off a killer tango, he would be the one to go. After Team Tango's performance, Len said Ty had done it! However, it seems like a long shot that he would stay on over Melissa.
We'll see tomorrow at 9 pm Eastern / 8 pm Central on ABC!