After Sherri Shepherd”s shocking elimination on Dancing with the Stars last week, the remaining contestants felt the pressure and turned up the heat for Latin Night in the ballroom on Monday.
Taking on the salsa, samba and the Argentine tango, nine couples performed hip-shaking routines that were in some cases downright steamy.
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Maria Menounos and Derek Hough performed one of the night”s sexiest routines, sealing their salsa with a controversial kiss. “That was hot,” Carrie Ann Inaba said, but “I don”t think you needed the kiss … Dance is about the illusion of passion.”
Bruno Tonioli offered to get a room for the couple, who earned 27 points. “Can I join in” he joked.
But two couples tied for the night”s top score: Katherine Jenkins and Mark Ballas performed a thrilling Argentine tango that earned 29 points. “[It was] the perfect pitch on the acting and the storytelling,” Bruno said. Carrie Ann told the classical singer she has the “best legs I”ve ever seen from any contestant.”
Also earning 29 points were Cheryl Burke and William Levy, who was recovering from an injured ankle. “I saw mood, I saw sensuality and passion,” Len Goodman said of their Argentine tango, which Carrie Ann called “ridiculously amazing.”
Donald Driver and Peta Murgatroyd had another great night, earning 27 points for a powerful Argentine tango, which contained what Len called “spectacular” lifts.
Roshon Fegan and Chelsie Hightower, who were in the bottom last week, struggled in rehearsals to find the Disney star”s sexy side. “It was very appropriate,” Carrie Ann said of their 26-point salsa. “It was sexy and you were on top of the beat.”
Jaleel White and Kym Johnson opened the night with a 24-point samba. “This week you came out with attack and fire,” Carrie Ann said.
Gladys Knight and Tristan MacManus performed a “simple but effective” samba, according to Len. They ended up with 22 points.
Melissa Gilbert bounced back from her head injury last week, earning 21 points for a salsa with Maksim Chmerkovskiy. “There were some excellent good parts and some parts that weren”t as good,” Len said of the routine, which lacked control.
Gavin DeGraw and Karina Smirnoff found themselves at the bottom of the leader board after performing a barely recognizable samba. “It was more of a sham-ba than a samba,” Len said of the routine, which was only given 19 points.