‘Dancing with the Stars’ Recap: Week 10

Last night on Dancing with the Stars, we watched as the celebrities danced their last routines before one couple is finally awarded the Mirror Ball Trophy and declared the champion of season 12. Each pair performed two dances: a dance the judges asked them to redo that the contestants performed (not so successfully) earlier in the season, and then the highly anticipated Freestyle.

The judges asked Hines Ward and Kym Johnson to dance the Quickstep again because the first time Hines performed it, his footwork was wrong and it threw off the entire dance. We watched as Len Goodman interrupted one of Hines and Kym’s rehearsal sessions and told them how important it was for Hines to make his feet “sharper.” When the time came for them to dance it in front of everyone, Hines’ feet didn’t seem any better than they usually are, and Len said the dance wasn’t worthy of a trophy. The judges gave them 29 points anyway.

Then, Chelsea Kane and Mark Ballas were asked to dance the Samba and during rehearsals, Carrie Ann Inaba explained the judges gave them that dance because the first time they performed it, there wasn’t any sexuality or sensuality (but how could it have been? The theme of the week was “American Pride!”). When they danced their new and improved routine, it was exciting and different than their other Samba, but Chelsea definitely seemed a little more nervous than we’d ever seen her and a little bit reluctant to just let go and move. Len said he enjoyed it very much even though there was a certain part of the routine that he didn’t care for, but Carrie Ann said it was exactly what Chelsea and Mark needed to do in the finals. The judges gave them 29 points.

Kirstie Alley and Maks were also asked to dance the Samba, and Bruno explained it was because Kirstie had so vastly improved since she last performed it that she should have the chance to get three 10s for it. Bruno instructed Kirstie to “take her moments” and to whenever she could, extend her arms out all the way to heighten the dance’s drama. When she danced their new routine in front of the audience, it wasn’t as exciting as it should have been. Honestly, I don’t think Kirstie should have made it this far. The judges liked her dance but noted that instead of being a full-blown Samba like Chelsea’s, it was more relaxed and “oozed ” (code for “slow”). They gave them 27 points.

Then Chelsea and Mark danced their freestyle, which Mark designed to be youthful and edgy so the two of them could show off their extreme fitness. It was a pretty smart decision, but these kinds of urban-inspired dances (while are my favorite freestyles) don’t usually result in a trophy. Unfortunately when they performed it, it looked rather sloppy. The judges gave them 30 points.

Next up to freestyle were Kirstie and Maks, and was pretty boring and  not different than what they’ve done this entire season. It was just the final opportunity to do what Maks has been dreading all season, which is lifting Kirstie. But the judges were in a giving mood and gave them another 27 points.

And finally, Hines and Kym danced their freestyle to a song from Drumline. Kym explained she wanted this final dance to be as great as a halftime show, and this theme was a really smart move on their part because like Chelsea and Mark’s dance, they brought a theme to the dance’s context, and it wasn’t just lost in space like Kirstie and Maks’. Their routine was so fun and it was so nice to see them end on such a high note. The judges gave them 30 points.