Don't forget to vote! Next week, that is. In the meantime, let's fuuuuuuuse!

By Annie Barrett
Updated November 06, 2012 at 11:39 AM EST
Credit: ABC
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It’s FUUUUUUUSION night! The seven remaining couples served up special combo platters of two unrelated dances during the Week 7 performance show. NO results show and NO elimination this week. We’ll see a double elimination next Tuesday and the Tuesday after that. Yikes!

I wouldn’t vote for a Fusion Dances theme week every season, but it was a cool way to challenge the All-Stars, who haven’t nearly achieved the Midseason Meltdowns quota to which we’re accustomed. These routines, plus the swing dance marathon (and more importantly Tom’s golf announcer voice), fun little election spoofs, and an emphasis on Hurricane Sandy relief as part of ABC’s Day of Giving all made this a well-rounded Monday.

Thank God for pyrotechnics and ridiculous props, though. Because at the end of the day, isn’t a mirrorball staff exploding into flames what Dancing With the Stars is all about?

Well, that and giving. Text 90999 to donate $10 to Hurricane Sandy relief.

I might have been able to live without Maks’ firecrotch….

….but really, why should I?

I loved the smear campaign ads thrown in before commercial breaks to make up for zero Tuesday-night ridiculata this week — especially those from the Committee for Actors Not Athletes — and Kirstie’s Stars With More Than 5% Body Fat rant against Gilles and Kelly, season 15’s most prominent nudes.

Will the judges please reveal their scores? Carrie Ann Inahhhhhh-ber!

Melissa Rycroft and Tony Dovolani: 29 out of possible 30 plus 10 out of possible 10 in the swing dance marathon = 39/40 That’s a mouthful! There’s gotta be a better way to convey these numbers — but if you just imagine this numeric/verbal nonsense emanating from the sparkle-toothed grins of both Tony and Melissa, maybe it’ll go down easier. This couple is having SO. MUCH. FUN! I’ll admit I wasn’t watching them much during the swing dance marathon they ended up winning, but during their tango/cha cha fusion I was completely riveted and dug their perfectly in sync, non-desperate energy. This dance had everything: a sequined collar on a man, the artful use of smoke during a costume change, pleather knee-high stockings masquerading as boots, and halter-top boob fringe. (A DWTS first? If not a first, then one of a relative few.)

I’m loving Tony and Melissa. And yeah, his name is listed first because come on. How cool would it be if Tony’s first Coveted Mirrorball Trophy was for the freaking All-Stars season?

NEXT: Len can’t vote, but he’s voting for Shawn and MarkShawn Johnson and Mark Ballas: 30/30 plus 8 (3rd place) for the swing dance marathon = 38/40 Before he took over hosting duties for Tom and Brooke, Derek promised he’d be back dancing next week — but with his herniated disc injury (doctors are begging him to have surgery already) it really is still up in the air. Meanwhile, poor Shawn had to deal with two backseat choreographers all week because Derek and Mark weren’t quite sure who’d be dancing with her (and probably enjoyed immensely the process of thoroughly confusing her for the sake of their art). Derek and Mark’s series of beeps and bops and bah!s — shared over a private frequency indecipherable to humans — is possibly the closest glimpse we’ve ever gotten of the true, mysterious native language of Planet Mirrorballus.

Anyway, it seems like Shawn prefers Derek as a partner, but what viewer could complain about Shawn and Mark’s stellar tango/paso combo? She’s just on fire this season, no smoke machine necessary. Not only did Shawn look amazing with those black hair extensions, her gown’s slit up to her hip, and deep V shielded by a strip of nude fabric (not a DWTS first by a long shot), but this new partnership proved she’s a winner without the use of extra gymnastics tricks and Derek’s magical presence. I couldn’t even tell the tango and paso apart (not that I ever can), that’s how well they were fuuuuuuuused together. And I agreed with all of Carrie Ann raves about this dance, minus the use of the term fantastique.

Kelly Monaco and Valentin Chmerkovskiy: 27/30 plus 9 (2nd place) in the s.d.m. = 36/40 Val admitted that despite their obvious chemistry, when it comes to rehearsal frustration, he and Kelly are “a hairline away from just ripping each other’s faces off.” I’m pretty sure he meant clothes, but whatever. They don’t need to keep faking those dramatic Bachlorette-esque fire pit chats to convince us that yes, yes, these two totally wanna do it! Val wants to have, like, 10,000 of Kelly’s babies. #ShirtlessBabies.

Anyway, despite a “tiny loss of balance in the first section of foxtrot” according to Bruno, Kelly and Val executed a really tight and more-lighthearted-than-usual foxtrot/cha cha combo that ended with him proposing to her on one knee in front of a flowery fountain. Don’t do it, Kelly! This staid garden had clearly not yet been blessed by the local smoke monster. The marriage would be a sham!

Emmitt Smith and Cheryl Burke: 27.5/30 plus 7 (4th place) in the s.d.m. = 34.5/40 I am really surprised Emmitt outscored Apolo this week, but I will say Cheryl’s choreography for their rumba/samba fusion was one of the most fascinating to watch. Add the various ways in which the spotlights hit Emmitt’s two-toned yet totally pink outfit, and you’ve got yourself a classic Dancing With the Stars viewing party. Bruno and Carrie Ann complained about Emmitt’s shoulders, but Len (also a member of the Pink Ladies tonight) was all raves, claiming he might have taken Emmitt’s place but in the end, didn’t think he could’ve “done it as good as that.” Oh, silly DANCMSTR. Show, don’t tell. I wanna see you dance. In love. And dance. Again. (Like J. Lo.) (And Val.)

NEXT: Apolo gets underscored… #VoteShirtless Gilles Marini and Peta Murgatroyd: 28.5/30 plus 5 (6th place) in the swing dance marathon = 33/40 Will Len’s “You were nipping around South America” comment after Gilles’ Argentine tango/samba fusion be his sexiest comment of the season? How tragic! I really liked Gilles’ sort of self-aware, how-ridiculous-is-this humor as he conducted the orchestra and took a deep bow at the top of Beethoven’s Fifth, but during the dance I thought he became more aggressive in his sheer (not shirted, not this time) desire to succeed at all costs and it was once again distracting. That’s not to say the couple didn’t look incredibly hot with their matching “black belts” needlessly holding together the backs of their costumes. At one point Gilles lost his tie and flung it into the corner…but it didn’t matter because his shirt was about to be ripped open anyway!

Carrie Ann was still ripping on Gilles’ lack of arm extensions. “Okay, ‘arm thingies.’ That’s helpful,” quipped Tom.


Apolo Anton Ohno and Karina Smirnoff: 27/30 plus 6 (5th place) in the s.d.m. = 33/40 Can Apolo just never wear a shirt again? Great, thanks. Halfway through their cha cha/paso doble fusion, the ballroom’s very own Gold Medal Ribbon blissfully ditched the upper half of his outfit to reveal a SMOKIN’ BOD (literally it was touched by an angel and the angel was the smoke monster) along with a ferocious “I gotta be me!” roar. It’s a shame these two performed first because I think this fusion deserved a higher placement overall and maybe the judges were just holding back. (Hard to believe triple 9s would qualify as holding back, but you know how it goes.) Apolo had some really crazy moves in here, like the slide into a split, a breakdance-y snap from the floor to stand up again, and an incredibly athletic leap that was like the shirtless speed skater’s version of an aerial cartwheel. Good stuff from Apolo.

Marathon Mindbender: Was Karina smushing Apolo’s face into her abs equivalent to or greater than Derek’s patented crotch-bob move? Discuss.

Kirstie Alley and Maksim Chmerkovskiy: 24/30 samba/quickstep plus 4 (last place) in the s.d.m. = 28/40 Kirstie and Maks focused more on Sandy than on samba this week, which made for a lovely charity segment but not such a hot dance fusion. You pick and choose your battles. I say we let the diaperless babies on the east coast have this one. $15 million was raised on ABC’s Day of Giving, Tom said. Incredible.

Sadly, this is another non-hidden gems week, due to election madness and lack of a results show recap. Look for a special guided tour of the DWTS rehearsal studios from Our Pro and long-lost love Tristan MacManus on this week as a consolation gem. Plus, I’ll be spearheading a special “Screen Gems of the Election” roundup Tuesday night, so look for that (and participate!) over on PopWatch. Politics, woooooot! Len can’t vote!

Who were your favorite fusion artists tonight?


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