It was a night full of fan-picked performances, trios, and an on-screen kiss.
Credit: ABC

Our apologies for the delayed DWTS recap—hopefully it’s just given you, America, more time to think of suggestions for your favorite dancing duos such as “lots of candles” and “y’all gonna be kissing?” That’s not to discredit America’s suggestions for hairstyles, costumes, music, and dance style, which shaped the first of each couple’s two dances tonight; giving the people what they wanted on Monday pulled out some of the best dances of the season, resulting in one perfect score, one near-perfect score, and a finally happy (and still bare-chested) Bachelor.

And on top of making these beautiful people dance like the waltzing Barbies you never had, the second dances of the evening were trios! Sure, for Nastia that’s just another day in Derek’s neighborhood—if you’re going to bogart Nastia’s post-dance hugs, Derek, please at least bring precious Sasha into your loving embrace, as well—but I think Sharna said it best for the rest of the tonight’s trios: “With all those extra limbs around, there’re just more possibilities.”

It was double the dances in preparation for a double elimination on Tuesday night. So hopefully America served its valued stars and pros well…

Noah Galloway & Sharna Burgess

“Geronimo” Sheppard | Tango

America originally wanted a military costume, but when Noah said that wasn’t an option (so there is a line on gimmicks!), America switched to a slick white suit and classic tango. Well, as classic as Sharna and Noah can get when they have to work around classic Tango elements like flexing knees and staccato. But work they did, and while the result was a little blocky, it was an elegant sort of blocky. 31/40

TRIO: “Mr. Put It Down” Ricky Martin | Salsa

I really wish that Carrie Ann hadn’t said, “two girls, one arm.” But in the context of adding Emma to the already-innovative duo, it’s true that the extra limbs added dynamics to their salsa—and those silhouette sculpture moments where Noah was lifting both women at once were nothing short of Mirrorball magic. 32/40

TOTAL: 63/80

Chris Soules & Witney Carson

“Lay Me Down” Sam Smith | Contemporary

You’d think the Bachelor would have finally been in his element when he was surrounded by multiple women later in the night—but no, leave it to Chris to be a total romantic and fall for the sweeping movements and candlelit atmosphere of his Contemporary number. The dance had intimate lifts for days, and as Julianne said, the upswing in performance is coming at just the right time. 34/40

TRIO: “Outside” Calvin Harris | Pasadoble

So it’s too bad that Chris’s underwhelming trio will be the lasting impression of the night. Chris really has improved, but he hasn’t quite improved to the point of being able to front a dance with two pro powerhouses in the form of Witney and Lindsay. 30/40

TOTAL: 64/80

NEXT: A little classic Rumba never killed nobody…

Riker Lynch & Allison Holker

“What Now” Rihanna | Viennese Waltz

America is demanding of its stars, and it demands dynamics! The people were looking for a heretofore unseen vulnerability from Riker. I thought this Viennese Waltz might finally break the fun-loving guy’s hot streak—but how dare I doubt that The Fun One could turn into The Sensitive One when called to by his fans? Len could have stood for a little more of the dance to be in hold, but for me, the control, elegance, and painful parting expressions were enough. 39/40

TRIO: “A Little Party Never Killed Nobody (All We Got)” Fergie | Jazz

But it was back to basics for the trio with Brittany. And, of course, Riker’s basics are incredible speed and precision and endless energy. There’s no one else in this current crew of stars that commands the stage like Riker—and this was the perfect time to prove it, sandwiched between two pros, but thrust out front and center during some seriously jazzy footwork. Even if he was just a hair ahead of the beat. 39/40

TOTAL: 78/90

Robert Herjavec & Kym Johnson

“Champagne Kisses” Jessie Ware | Contemporary

Okay, now kiss! That’s all America wanted from the budding romance of Robert and Kym, and that’s what they got… and then some. The “some” being a lightness on their feet, Robert’s torso, and a new fan in Len. 33/40

TRIO: “Cinema Italiana” from Nine | Samba

Unfortunately, Robert’s Samba wasn’t quite as effortless. If Kym was too much for Robert to handle last week, two ladies were double trouble, and the Shark just couldn’t quite remember his steps and lead two pros at the same time. 29/40

TOTAL: 63/80

Nastia Liukin & Sasha Farber (& Derek Hough)

“Centuries” Fall Out Boy | Pasodoble

It was Sasha to the rescue again for Nastia and Derek, and the former Troupe member was just glad not to be dressed as a crab. In fact, he got to dress as a bad ass gladiator, stomp around the dance floor under the watchful eye of King Derek, and get flipped over Nastia’s shoulder. As cool as that move was, and as much as I loved the newly found sass from Nastia, I’m with Len that a little more recognizable Paso would have been nice. 36/40

TRIO: “Diane Young” Vampire Weekend | Jive

But who cares, because this perma-trip just killed that Jive! I was feeling a little annoyed that Derek and Nastia were getting out of an actual trio by having her switch back and forth between Sasha’s cool guy apartment and Derek’s straight-laced fella, but by the time they were all dancing on one side, with Nastia whizzing through the door and transforming every 20 seconds, I was as sold on the innovation as the judging panel. 40/40

TOTAL: 76/40

Rumer Willis & Val Chmerkovsky

“Perhaps, Perhaps, Perhaps” Doris Day | Rumba

Oh, those Chmerkovskiys—they just can’t help but get extra hard on themselves around this time in the completion. But thank goodness Val is a diamond under pressure, deciding to lead with love this week instead of stress and anxiety—and producing a pitch-perfect Rumba just when they needed it most. 40/40

TRIO: Pasodoble

Rumer, with her elegant body and focused movements, is simply made for the classics. Adding Artem to the mix was a stroke of genius, not only for aesthetic purposes (they made quite the trio), but to show that even in between two Paso-ing hunks of professional dancer, Rumer owns the floor. And according to the judges, she’s just perfection. 40/40

TOTAL: 80/80

What did you think of all the high scores tonight? Will they be enough to save the top of the leaderboard, or will the looming gloom of Willow’s surprise departure strike again? Name your picks for the double elimination—should go and will go—in the comments!

Episode Recaps

Dancing With the Stars
  • TV Show
  • 31