Dancing With the Stars Week 8 Performance Recap: 3 for the Show!

roshon fagan dwtsWith only a half dozen celebs remaining, Dancing With the Stars producers had to get creative to fill an increasingly empty ballroom floor — not to mention two hours of airtime — for Monday night’s Week 8 performance show.

But, of course, where there’s a will — and 15 million eager viewers — there’s a way. In addition to a standard ballroom dance, we also got a Trio Dance — a DWTS first — that allowed each couple to hand-select a third partner (either an eliminated pro or member of the DWTS Troupe) for another shot at striking the judges’ fancy and climbing up the leaderboard. Here’s everything you need to know about the eighth week of DWTS:

Who’s Finale-Bound? | Just when it looked like season-long front-runners William Levy, Katherine Jenkins, and Donald Driver were primed to separate themselves from the pack, tonight’s dances helped nudge some apparent also-rans right back into contention. William definitely earned that 30 for his opening Fox Trot, but was anyone else pleasantly surprised by that near-perfect Roshon opener, or his overall second-place finish for the night? With Katherine’s less-than-stellar first dance — though she more than made up for it later, especially her graceful save from a potentially disastrous wardrobe manfunction — I wonder if the Disney kid can actually ride this newfound momentum to have a real shot at the Mirrorball Trophy?

Three’s Company? | I might be veering into cranky Len territory here — and certainly Carrie Ann made it clear she loved the concept — but I’d say the first-ever trio round left me believing that when it comes to DWTS, three’s a crowd. Adding a random No. 3 back into the mix at this crucial stage only distracted from the couples still in contention, making it harder to figure out who’s worth backing, and who should be sent packing.

Quotes of the Night | “I’m the kind of guy, I don’t like so much rules, I like freedom.” –William Levy, on his attitude about the strict parameters of ballroom dance

“It’s like watching a young Mickey Rooney.” –Bruno to Roshon, after his delightful, engaging Fox Trot

“There was a little bit of a Cirque du Soleil moment going into that lift.” –Carrie Ann, about Katherine’s somewhat shaky Viennese Waltz

“Yeah, right now, about a minute and a half ago.” –Bad boy Maks (looking very sheepish), when asked by Brooke if he ever goes too far with Melissa

“All I can say is meow, meow, meow!” –Carrie Ann, about William’s Fox Trot

“There is nothing hotter than dancing with the two Chmerkovskiy’s.” –Melissa, commenting on the Trio dance

“Is it Melissa or Miss Rita Hayworth?” –Bruno to Melissa after her Trio round Samba

“You were like two skinny fries chasing the ketchup.” –Len to Roshon and Sasha, in response to their Trio dance with Chelsie

Judges’ Leaderboard (Carrie Ann, Len, Bruno: Total)
William Levy and Cheryl Burke: 10, 10, 10: 30
Roshon Fegan and Chelsie Hightower: 10, 9, 10: 29
Maria Menounos and Derek Hough: 10, 8, 19: 28
Donald Driver and Peta Murgatroyd: 9, 9, 9: 27.
Katherine Jenkins and Mark Ballas: 8, 9, 9: 26
Melissa Gilbert and Maksim Chmerkovskiy: 8, 8, 8: 24

Team Trios
Katherine Jenkins and Mark Ballas (with Tristan MacManus): 10, 9, 10: 29
Donald Driver and Peta Murgatroyd (featuring Karina Smirnoff): 10, 9, 9: 28
William Levy and Cheryl Burke (featuring Tony Dovolani): 9, 9, 9: 27
Roshon Fegan and Chelsie Hightower (featuring Sasha Farber): 9, 9, 9: 27
Melissa Gilbert and Maksim Chmerkovskiy (featuring Val Chmerkovskiy) : 9, 9, 9: 27
Maria Menounos and Derek Hough (featuring Henry Byalikov): 9, 7, 9: 25

Now it’s your turn. Did the presence of Roshon’s delightful, dance-savvy grandmothers in the rehearsal clips and in the audience inspire his best scores ever? Did William really deserve that perfect 30? What was up with potty-mouthed Maks and Derek in rehearsals this week? And what was that decorative thing on Brooke’s shoulder? Leave your comments!–Mitch Rustad

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. afghan says:

    I loved Maria and Derek creativity on the second dance. I understand Len is all about content but 7. That’s really low. William always look a little stiff to me. But I think last week first dance deserved 30 more than this week. But he looks so good, I think he will win the competition. Donald always begging for 10s. It’s not nice. But I think the judges have been pretty fair in the scoring. He needs more connection with his partner emotionally wise to make it perfect. And the guy is a competitor. Roshon really does not have the fanbase, but he was ok. He is a really good dancer. Mark is also very creative. I would love to see him and Derek in the final cause I know the quality of the choreography will be subpar. Great job on the second dance also. Maks is cruising on good looks. I hope it will end this week but he avoided bottom 2 for so long I don’t know what will happen. My favorite for the final is Maria, William, and Katherine.

  2. Angela says:

    I thought the trio dances were an interesting experiment that went off pretty well overall. Yes, they were obviously done to stretch out the time, and this is an idea that, if they do it again, I think would only work once a season at best. But I enjoyed those dances overall (that jump Donald did over Peta and Karina’s heads at the end…WHOA. Plus, I got to see Tristan again, looking incredibly handsome in a suit, in a really cool number with Katherine and Mark, so I’m not going to complain too much :D).
    Good to see a few people come back strong-William and Cheryl did deserve that 30, I think, and yay to Roshon for bouncing back as well as he did-I was feeling kinda bad for the poor kid, being stuck in the bottom each week. Everyone’s trying to unseat Derek and Maria now, apparently.
    Wouldn’t surprise me to see Maks and Maria in the bottom two-that tense argument between them was…eesh. I understand wanting to push your partner to do their best and getting frustrated sometimes, but at the same time, calm down, people. Good of him and Derek to acknowledge they were a bit harsh, though.

    • Angela says:

      Er, that should read “Maks and Melissa”. Yay, typos!

    • duranmom says:

      The producers video hours of footage and each week they paint him as the bad guy. I’m sorry, she danced wonderfully last night, so he’s doing something right.

  3. M2 says:

    William & Cheryl deserved the 30 and to those who think otherwise can suck it. Let’s go William you got all my votes

    • chistosa says:

      M2, can’t you post an opinion without the childish and totally classless comment? If you took your insulting phrase beginning with :..and to those….” you would have expressed your opinion and maintained your dignity.

  4. Bj says:

    Does anyone else think Donald driver is getting under scored?? I personally thought his trio dance deserved a 10. After William he would be second choice to win

    • dvmom says:

      I totally agree with you. His trio dance should have scored higher.

    • Margaret says:

      I LOVED his trio dance!!! and that leap at the end, holy cow!!

    • Natou says:

      No, he is not. He is technically ok. But he lacks emotional connection to his partner and he is not too fluid. But he is a great learner. Asking for 10 all the time does not help. Just let your body of work prove your point.

  5. Li says:

    All I got to say Tristan is HOT. Next season give him a better dancer no offense to ms. Knight

  6. I think Roshon should win this season, I think the judges underscore him too much. They too in love with every body else not including Melissa that they always over see how great he is but this week they finally saw him and I hope he makes it to top 4 and then the top 3 & 2 and then wins.

    • smidnite says:

      Don’t blame the judges, blame those of us who are over 12, and can’t stand him. He’s so creepy that my Disney age nieces can’t stand the sight of him.

    • chistosa says:

      They are not underscoring him. He often lacks control. Last week he was covering the floor so furiously that I thought they were going off the edge of the raised stage into the house. Tonight he was good and received the scores to reflect it.

  7. Pat says:

    If Melissa doesn’t go home tomorrow this season is rigged.

    • smidnite says:

      I knew the season was rigged from week 1.

      • LL300 says:

        I won’t say the show is rigged, but I have wondered if Derek gets first dibs on picking his partners. It seems he’s never had one that couldn’t dance. And as good a dancer as he is, even a really bad dancer can’t get to Top3. I think Mark is also one of the best choreographers, but even he couldn’t bring Kim Kardashian or Shannen Doherty to the near top. So it does seem to me that Derek is their golden child.

    • chistosa says:

      The season is not rigged. It is reality tv and there is no accounting for the reasons the voting public casts the votes they do. How did Kate Gosselin stay in for so long? She was horrible in everyway and the judges rightfully gave her the lowest scores but for some unknown reason there were enough fans voting for her to keep her in while more worthy competitors were eliminated. And how many viewers vote for hot males whether they are good or not? These year William is good but if he wasn’t he would still receive massive numbers of votes. Not rigged, just reality tv. Put in a sob story, voters pick up the phones to vote.

  8. Dcwriter says:

    Trios were awesome. They were fresh and fun and were a good challenge for the pros as well. I completely disagree with you on that front.

  9. nancytodd says:

    I know the “Cirque de Soleil” remark was made last week about Melissa and Mak’s dance was it really made again last night?

  10. Hannah says:

    I hope Roshon and Chelsie will win this season

  11. MK says:

    I like everyone except Melissa, but I like Katherine and Mark the best. I hope their low scores in the first round don’t weigh too much into the total votes. I think Roshon is adorable and a really good dancer.

    So for me, here’s what I’d like to see….in order of win…Katherine, William, Roshon, Donald, Maria, Melissa.

    I also hope Dial Idol is wrong. I haven’t voted much this year but I voted last night.