Dancing With the Stars Week 5 Performance Recap: Tangos in the Night

True confession: I had a hard time facing Week 5 of Dancing With the Stars without the presence of ebullient quote machine Sherri Shepherd. But there was no time for tears as the nine remaining couples prepared to Samba, Salsa and Tango the night away. That’s right, welcome to Latin Night, or as I like to call it, the episode in which William Levy shook his ample bon-bon.

But it wasn’t just the promise of shimmying booty, but also trouble, that hung heavy in the ballroom air: A trio of injury-plagued faves — Melissa Gilbert (concussion), Maria Menounos (stress fracture in her foot), and hunk du jour Levy (ankle) — were nursing wounds that had the potential to hamper their footwork and inspire the judges’ wrath. How’d it play out? Here’s everything you need to know about Week 5:

Hobbled Heroes | Within minutes of Carlos Santana’s superlative opening, we were treated to clips showing Melissa sprouting a neck brace and Maria lying face down on the floor crying “No, no, no I’m not OK!” Were we about to witness “Night of the Walking Wounded”? Not so fast! First, good sport Melissa donned a hardhat, and then Maria’s self-deprecating bubble wrap/crash helmet getup gave me a giggle. And later on, William’s Argentine Tango was sensationally injury-free (and darn near perfect)! Here’s hoping we’re done with emergency room trips and MRIs this season.

Rehearsed or Real? | Was Carrie Ann right to call out Maria and Derek’s mid-Salsa make-out session as a “sellout”? Maria certainly downplayed any blogosphere-fueled showmance rumors after last week’s “kiss”: “Everyone kept asking, ‘Did they or didn’t they [kiss]?’, so … let’s just do it.” Derek was less demure, summing up their lip-lock like this: “The music was saying ‘do you really want it? And I was like, ‘I really want it.'” My take: Romance or not, Carrie Ann’s reaction was way harsh.

Quotes of the Night | “I was committed this week. I got a spray tan with Maks.” — Jaleel White

Maks: “Whenever you’re ready, grandma.”
Melissa: “There’s no grandma in here.”

“Dance is about the illusion of passion: Don’t go at it right there in front of us. Save it for back there!” –Carrie Ann, responding to Maria and Derek’s mid-Salsa kiss

“That wiggle! Have you got a Mini-Me inside there operating? It was unstoppable!” –Bruno, critiquing Jaleel’s energetic Samba

“Was it legal? Want me to get you a room? Can I join in?” –A breathless Bruno, excited about Maria and Derek’s Salsa.

“It was more of a shamba than a Samba.” –Len to Gavin

Judges’ Leaderboard (Carrie Ann, Len, Bruno: Total)
William Levy and Cheryl Burke: 10, 9, 10: 29
Katherine Jenkins and Mark Ballas: 10, 9, 10: 29
Donald Driver and Peta Murgatroyd: 10, 8, 9: 27
Maria Menounos and Derek Hough: 9, 9, 9: 27
Roshon Fegan and Chelsie Hightower: 9, 8, 9: 26
Jaleel White and Kym Johnson: 8, 8, 8: 24
Gladys Knight and Tristan MacManus: 7, 7, 8: 22
Melissa Gilbert and Maksim Chmerkovskiy: 7, 7, 7: 21
Gavin DeGraw and Karina Smirnoff: 6, 6, 7: 19

Now it’s your turn. Did William and Katherine’s dueling Argentine tangos really warrant those near-perfect scores? Were you relieved that Brooke dumped last week’s monstrous weave and enjoyed a drama-free hair night? Does Katherine really have the best legs in the history of DWTS (as Carrie Ann said)? Leave your comments below! —Mitch Rustad 

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