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Dancing With the Stars recap: Season 23, Episode 13

Welcome to an evening of tears and trio dances!

Posted on

ABC/Eric McCandless

Dancing With the Stars

TV Show
Reality TV
run date:
Tom Bergeron, Carrie Ann Inaba, Bruno Tonioli, Len Goodman, Erin Andrews, Julianne Hough
Current Status:
In Season

We’re getting down to it, folks. The Dancing With the Stars semi-finals are upon us, and with five talented couples still remaining, tonight’s elimination is bound to be a heartbreaker no matter who gets the boot ahead of the finals.

But don’t be too forlorn, Dancing buddies. Before we get down to business, we have two rounds of new routines to enjoy, one of which happens to be the Trio Dance. I don’t know about you, but I think the Trio Dance has surpassed the Freestyle as the season’s most anticipated routine. And this season, the Trio Dance comes with an added bonus: We get to set our peepers on The Brothers Chmerkovskiy dancing together again. Let us rejoice.

Also, let us recap. Here’s how the semi-finals went down:

James Hinchcliffe and Sharna Burgess

Argentine Tango, “Santa Maria” by Gotan Project

Guess who’s back? Sharna’s back. Not only is she back, but she’s back in velvety perfection. But seriously, is Sharna’s dress the best of the season? Debate in the comments. Oh, queen, you’ve been missed. Sharna hasn’t enjoyed sitting on the sidelines, and James is feeling a little down after some mishaps during his jazz routine on “Showstoppers Night.” They’re both ready to put the past behind them and get their Argentine tango on. Sharna choreographs a number in which she’s blindfolded the whole time, leaving James to lead the entire way. The risk pays off. Carrie Ann points out a few missteps in the beginning (anyone else miss these?), but Julianne and Bruno agree the couple’s partnering is beyond compare. Also, James does a routine-ending handstand on a chair over Sharna, so there’s that.

Judges’ Score: 29/30

Terra Jolé and Sasha Farber

Rumba, “Scars to Your Beautiful” by Alessia Cara

Could Terra’s husband, Joe, be any cuter? He calls his wife Wonder Woman and judging from Terra’s hip action, he must be right. I mean, as wise philosophers have pointed out time and time again, “hips don’t lie.” Terra’s story has always been about determination and beating the odds, and as Julianne points out, the rumba should be very difficult for someone with Terra’s body — but nobody told Terra that. She’s fluid in her movement, has excellent shaping, and Bruno especially calls out her great underarm passes. Julianne calls it Terra’s best dance of the competition and Carrie Ann is moved beyond words. Maybe I’m a robot inside, but I think Terra’s had some more emotionally impactful routines throughout the season. Those 10 paddles might be flying fast and loose this evening.

Judges’ Score: 30/30

Jana Kramer and Gleb Savchenko

Quickstep, “Go Mama” by Wayne Beckford

Jana’s come a long way since the beginning of the season. Through dance, she’s regained her confidence and fighting spirit. She’s feeling like herself again. It’s a bit of a strange juxtaposition to hear her difficult story and then watch Jana and Gleb perform a quickstep about buying shoes. I love shoes and I love quicksteps, but how emotionally connected can a person get to this routine? (On second thought, I have a pair of black pumps in my closet I totally get emotional over.) The dance is fun, and it’s a proper, traditional quickstep, which really winds Julianne’s clock. Bruno calls it elegant and glamorous, and Carrie Ann commends Jana for being the most improved Star of the season. Okay, so maybe shoes are the way to go.

Judges’ Score: 28/30

NEXT: So. Many. Tears. But also dancing!