Former “Dancing With the Stars” pro Louis van Amstel blogs on season 13 of “DWTS.” The three-time world dance champion, who starred on seven seasons of the hit ABC show, weighs in on the dances, the judges’ scores and who will be eliminated.
Week 3 and this is my first time seeing the show live. It is more fun seeing it with the real atmosphere!
Personal story week is always very emotional, which is great for the audience! The audience should get a “real view” of the celebrity and it often times brings the couple closer together, or not. LOL! In tonight’s case, it did!
1. Rob Kardashian and Cheryl Burke’s Foxtrot
The package alone got me going. It’s nice to hear there was such a bond between Rob and his dad. I’m starting to see more confidence within Rob. He gave a very nice, clean performance and was soft-spoken and, yet, masculine. Rob now needs to get more involved in the dance to compete for the top spot. By the way, for a self-proclaimed “goofball,” Rob is better than I thought. I totally agree with the judges, all three!!! Good scores!
2. Chynna Philips and Tony Dovolani’s Rumba
What an honest package. I really appreciate it when a celeb reveals their real side. “DWTS” also often times really changes the celeb’s life. Dance can do miracles. This was Chynna’s best dance, especially taking in consideration the Rumba can be the kiss of death because it is so slow. You can see Chynna is nervous, and the dance had moments where I thought it could go downhill, but it didn’t at all! Beautiful movement. I’d still like to see more risks and pushing the envelope, simply because Chynna can do it! Great scores, not sure if I agree with the two 9's, but I can’t fully disagree. Does that make sense? LOL!
3. Chaz Bono and Lacey Schwimmer’s Rumba
“If you have a problem, it’s your problem, not mine,” said Chaz Bono. I love that statement. I’m going to use that one! I love Chaz and I want him to go as far as possible, but this Rumba was not good. I have to say when they were doing Rumba it was actually good, but there wasn’t enough Rumba content. I did think Chaz was having moments where he was having a great time. Len, best dance with heel leads followed by a 6!? This is where I question the judges’ comments not matching the scores!
4. Kristin Cavallari and Mark Ballas’s Samba
I’m watching the package and I wonder what the personal story is? Kristin looks hot, hot, hot, and is very feminine, but I wish she would actually believe it and express it more internally. Kristin has moments where she is very tentative. In their defense, thank God all the shaking stuff is coming from the Brazilian Samba! Grumpy old Lennie boy! I saw Kristin put real effort into getting the bounce in the Samba elements which is the character of competitive Samba. It’s another hard dance to capture. Great job! Good scores!
5. Carson Kressley and Anna Trebunskaya’s Tango
What an inspirational package. Amen, Carson! I love you even more. I just had to shed a tear. This is many people’s story, feeling different and not accepted. Who knew camp can sell so well and still be classy, all at the same time! I really like Carson’s frame, and he had moments where he was musical as well. I think this was Carson’s best dance. Maybe not technically, but considering commitment, involvement and entertainment value, it was superb. The crowd went crazy. Great scores. In this case, the judges definitely took entertainment value into consideration!
6. J.R. Martinez and Karina Smirnoff’s Rumba
What a story. J.R., you’re a super hero, and so is your mom! Thank you for choosing to fight!!!! What you guys might not know is that the couples see their video package for the first time just before they dance! Both J.R. and Karina were very emotional, which makes it even harder to dance. Kudos to both of you! OMG, it’s so hard to judge J.R.’s dance just having watched his video package, but that’s my job, so I will. Even though we are all crying in the ballroom, from a technical point, it wasn’t J.R.’s best performance. I agree with Len, BUT with moments like these where everyone is touched, you forget about technique. It was a magical moment in the room. Awesome scores!
7. Nancy Grace and Tristan MacManus’ Waltz
This was another touching story. It makes me so happy that Nancy’s twins are alive and healthy. This waltz was sweet, tender and understated, with some nice, basic ballroom elements. But, I want to see more now, both in expression and choreography. I really liked the balancing on one foot, very elegant. What I loved so much about Nancy in Week 1 is that she was so witty and goofy. I want to see that more, even in the more serious dances. We all love the mommy Nancy, we see the prosecutor every day! I wish I could agree with Carrie Ann. I would have liked to have seen more emotional involvement, like I saw in the video package. Scores were okay!
8. Ricki Lake and Derek Hough’s Rumba
Love and power to all single mothers. Never say never, Ricki…LOL. You’re doing “DWTS” and I have a feeling you’ll get married again. Gorgeous, real and empowering, Ricki was so involved. Rumba is so slow it could make any celeb look so stiff, but Ricki was so relaxed and moving her whole body! Her legs could have been a little more stretched, but there were some really nice Rumba elements. Well deserved scores!
9. Hope Solo and Maksim Chmerkovskiy’s Cha-Cha
Watching the video package, I’m worried about Hope’s femininity. Hope looks hot. When they’re together, just moving on the spot, they have a lot of chemistry, but the Cha-Cha was simply not good enough. For a tall girl like Hope, she moves quickly, but it needs to be done with grace and the so-called sexiness. There were moments it was, I hate saying this, even butch. The good thing is, Hope knows the routine well, and has great determination, so that helps. I totally disagree with Len. This was not Hope’s best dance! I’d give her a 7. And I loooove Hope…..and Maks!
10. David Arquette and Kym Johnson’s Rumba
How honest can someone get in front of millions? David, you’re another very inspirational celebrity this season. How can I criticize someone who reveals so much about himself and dares to be so vulnerable? Not easy. In this case, I hate writing this blog. What a great job and effort. Considering this is such a hard dance, I thought David executed the movement very well and was aware of his body. From a Rumba point-of-view, there were some awkward moments, but I believed every moment of it! I agreed with the judges. Great scores! I don’t know if I would have given an 8, but I can’t boo the judges for it!
It’s hard to say who I’m worried about this week because people at home, especially this week, will definitely take all the personal stories into account when they vote. Is that right? Not if you want the best dancer to win, but, for this week, it is almost inevitable!
It makes me very happy that the judges do respect the celebs’ personal stories. It would be heartbreaking if any of the celebs would have been trashed after putting their hearts on the line this week by revealing very personal life stories.
Can I just tell you that I think this episode of “DWTS,” Season 13, Week 3 is, literally, a brilliant PSA against bullying and in support of women empowering and hope! I highly recommend all of you share this episode with as many people as possible. What a great, inspirational night! Also, a big shout-out to all of the pros who work hard to bring out the best in their celebrities. I love you guys.
Get the latest from Louis van Amstel at his website, Lablastfitness.com.