DWTS' Disney Night was electric with heartfelt performances
by Kim Krober
It was Disney Night on Dancing with the Stars, and the cute costumes did not disappoint. It was also amazing to see the Disney Parks' Main Street Electrical Parade resurrected in the ballroom in all of its resplendent glory. This might be the only week I'll enjoy Tyra's outfit. She looked adorable in her Minnie Mouse-inspired black, red, and white polka dot dress and Minnie ears. I also liked Carrie Ann's princess look, although she was a week too late to get in on the pretty in pink action Derek and Bruno were channeling last week. And how cute was the Mirrorball Trophy with Mickey ears!? I wish it looked like that all the time!
Let's take a look at how your favorites did on this pixie dust-sprinkled third week of competition:
Skai Jackson & Alan Bersten, Jive
Skai and Alan came back in full swing with a Jive to "Almost There" from The Princess and The Frog. Alan's green suit was money. Derek complimented Skai for looking like a lovely princess, but he wasn't head over heels over her performance. Bruno noted it was crisp and focused, although it lacked the Jive's elasticity. Carrie Ann could see she was still nervous about making missteps after last week but told her it was nice to see her energy back on track.
Monica Aldama & Val Chmerkovskiy, Viennese Waltz
A Viennese Waltz set to "Part of Your World" from The Little Mermaid? Be still, my beating heart. The Little Mermaid is a childhood favorite, and I loved her mermaid-eque dress and the bubbly backdrop with the castle. Bruno admired her confidence and connection but cautioned her about losing her posture and beautiful lines. Carrie Ann said the magic of Disney touched her because she could tell Monica was having fun on the dance floor this week. Derek said it was absolutely beautiful but told her to watch her feet.
Justina Machado & Sasha Farber, Charleston
I adored Justina and Sasha's Charleston to "Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious" from Mary Poppins mostly because of their outfits and the animated penguins in the background! Carrie Ann loved their synchronicity, although she felt it could have benefited from more energy. Derek also didn't feel like the footwork and energy were there. Bruno said it was sweetly delicious, but he thought it was more about the music hall/slapstick performance than perfecting the Charleston. I agreed with the judges. I was expecting a larger than life performance from this duo that wasn't quite there.
AJ McLean & Cheryl Burke, Quickstep
It will be difficult to beat AJ's enthusiastic Quickstep set to "Prince Ali" from Aladdin. I especially liked the Genie's applause sign at the end. Derek said AJ always puts a smile on his face and he could tell his frame is improving. Bruno compared him to Vin Diesel before saying he loved the momentum and seeing him refine his movements. Carrie Ann liked seeing him step into his comfort zone with his own funky style. Maybe his wish of an "8" will happen next week?
Anne Heche & Keo Motsepe, Quickstep
Anne and Keo were tasked with a Quickstep to "Zero to Hero" from Hercules, and they went the distance. I enjoyed watching her facial expressions as she sold the character's emotions. Bruno called it a stormy romance, although he did admit it was entertaining to watch. Carrie Ann loved the beginning but felt the choreography quickly spiraled out of control. Derek encouraged Anne to learn the entire routine in rehearsals, so she knows Keo's parts as well as hers to come together more cohesively in the future. However, he commended her for committing fully to the roles.
Jeannie Mai & Brandon Armstrong, Viennese Waltz
Jeannie and Brandon may have earned my vote for the cutest couple costumes of the night with their charming Viennese Waltz to "Married Life" from Up. Carrie Ann called her adorable and admired the balance of their partnership, while Bruno said it was pure storytelling. Derek felt it was beautiful with a fantastic frame, calling it her best performance to date. Her scores will be hard to beat.
Nelly & Daniella Karagach, Foxtrot
Nelly and Daniella danced a soulful Foxtrot set to "It's All Right" from Soul, a Pixar movie coming out in November. Derek thought it was more than alright, saying it was a great ballroom effort. Bruno called it charming, saying Nelly looked like a tender gentleman with a proper slow Foxtrot. Carrie Ann admires his naturalness but wants to see him have a breakout performance. She feels he plays it too safe.
Carole Baskin & Pasha Pashkov, Samba
What else would you expect Carole Baskin to dance to on Disney Night other than "The Circle of Life" from The Lion King? Was it a Samba fit for a Simba? She seemed more in her element with this week's dance, although it felt a little sleepy. Bruno was stunned, saying he's never seen a Samba quite like this one. He said she walked through it without any bounce or energy. Ever searching for the silver lining behind every rain cloud, Carrie Ann told her she looked beautiful and she could tell she danced the song full of love. Derek thanked her for loving and protecting big cats and gave her a 10 for her hair, makeup, and costume, although he noted the dance lacked any rhythm at all.
Kaitlyn Bristowe & Artem Chigvintsev, Rumba
Kaitlyn's Rumba to "How Far I'll Go" from Moana proves she's peaking at the right time in this competition. Carrie Ann thought it was the best dance of the night and loved seeing Hawaiian flair combined with Rumba movements. Derek admired her lyrical qualities, but sounded a bit like Len Goodman when he said he would have enjoyed seeing more Latin footwork. Bruno said it reminded him of the shape of water with continuous movement and beautiful flow. You would never know she has an ankle injury.
Vernon Davis & Peta Murgatroyd, Quickstep
I was cracking up at Vernon's reaction to portraying Lumiere during his Quickstep set to "Be Our Guest" from Beauty & The Beast. He has such a positive energy about him. When his face lights up into a smile, you can't help but smile. Derek also loves watching him dance, saying he admires his joy. Bruno complimented Peta on transforming the beast, saying he could feel their connection. Carrie Ann said it was amazing to see them find their balance in their partnership, calling it another of her favorite performances of the night. Listen to Derek Hough, Vernon: Real men play candlesticks!
Nev Schulman & Jenna Johnson, Argentine Tango
An Argentine Tango set to "Angelica" from Pirates of the Caribbean on the third week? And yet Nev made it look effortless. Bruno loved the inebriated mannerisms of the character and applauded him for attacking the intensity of the dance. Carrie Ann noted many competitors hide behind the lifts in this dance but praised him for using the lifts appropriately. Derek said they were cookin' with some hot sauce and admired all of the footwork. It was spectacular!
Johnny Weir & Britt Stewart, Rumba
Rumbas always bring raw passion and heartfelt emotions to the ballroom, and Johnny's dedication of his Rumba to "Reflection" from Mulan to his parents was no exception. Carrie Ann believes in Johnny's potential, saying she finally saw the transformation of a figure skater to a ballroom dancer this week and it was epic. Derek thought everything about it was beautiful and gave a shout out to Johnny's family sacrificing everything to make his dreams come true. Bruno was impressed by the projected emotions, telling him he's on the right track now. Love watching him dance!
Jesse Metcalfe & Sharna Burgess, Jive
Jesse embraced the moniker "King of New York" with his Jive set to the fan favorite from Newsies. OMG, those costumes. I've never seen a cooler dress than the one Sharna was wearing with newsprint on it! Derek didn't think he was as comfortable with this routine as he was last week. Bruno disagreed, saying he played the role brilliantly with light, nimble footwork. Carrie Ann agreed with Bruno, saying she could see him on Broadway, although she agreed with Derek about him being ahead of the music at times. It was mixed reactions and mixed scores from the judges.
Chrishell Stause & Gleb Savchenko, Waltz
Chrishell was given the golden opportunity to dance a Waltz to "A Dream Is a Wish Your Heart Makes" from Cinderella, which was a fitting way to end Disney Night. Bruno called her the belle of the ball, saying he could feel the romance unfolding with the moment at the end killing him. Carrie Ann said they're stunning together, although Chrishell needs to work on her shoulders. Derek noted she needs to keep her feet together on the turns, but admitted the dance was overall stunning. She earned some last-minute votes from me for her dreamy performance.
It's always sad to say goodbye to anyone on such a magical evening, but it was revealed that Carole & Pasha and Anne & Keo were in jeopardy. Derek, Bruno, and Carrie Ann all voted to save Anne and Keo. Carole Baskin didn't seem too upset about going home to her husband. I think the producers will miss dressing her up in ridiculous outfits more than America will miss seeing her. How did your favorites fare this week? Were you sad to see Carole go?
Dancing With the Stars airs Mondays at 8:00 PM on ABC.