'Dancing with the Stars': The Team Samba Helps Kellie Pickler Top Leaderboard
Stevie Wonder's music played all night long on "Dancing with the Stars" Monday night, April 22. All remaining eight contestants returned to perform an individual routine and a team dance, all set to the "Superstition" hitmaker's songs.
Zendaya Coleman and her pro partner Val Chmerkovskiy were the first to dance and showed another strong performance with their cha cha cha. Bruno Tonioli praised her "mesmerizing shape, hypnotic presence, slick hip action." The Disney star got 29 points.
Zendaya's almost perfect performance was in contrast with Andy Dick's samba. Dancing with his partner Sharna Burgess, he was criticized for the lack of techniques in his routine. Carrie Ann Inaba said, "There were times when I wondered, 'What dance is he doing?' " Len Goodman encouraged Andy to stick to what he does best, "I want you to do what you do, and what you do is give us fun." The comedian only got 18 points.
Sean Lowe and Peta Murgatroyd also danced a samba, which was a bit better than Andy's. Len said the former "The Bachelor" star "kept getting on the wrong foot, you had no hip action, your upper body had no musicality about it." Agreeing with Len, Bruno cracked a joke with his comment, "Look at the bright side. You can always get a job as a stripper." The reality TV star earned 21 points.
Dancing a foxtrot with Mark Ballas, Aly Raisman was "heading toward perfection" as Carrie Ann said. Len and Bruno also liked it, but the latter added, "The frame is the only thing that lets me down a bit." The Olympic star earned 27 points.
Ingo Rademacher, who was celebrating his 41st birthday, showed improvement when dancing an elegant tango with Kym Johnson. "Finally, welcome to the game!" Carrie Ann exclaimed, as Bruno said, "A couple of foot faults, but other than that, that is the way to do it." The soap opera actor got 24 points.
Next, Kellie Pickler and Derek Hough danced a quickstep, which Len dubbed the best dance in season 16. Carrie raved, "Perfect posture, perfect nuance, perfect lines, perfect interpretation," but noticed that "there was some space in your hold." Bruno additionally gushed, "I tell you, this was sumptuous dancing of the highest quality!" The country music star earned 29 points.
Victor Ortiz and Lindsey Arnold danced a rumba, but it lacked hip action. Bruno said it looked a "bit like an airline safety drill," but Len realized that it was a tough dance and Victor "coped very well." The boxer got 18 points.
Jacoby Jones and Karina Smirnoff rounded up the individual dances with a quickstep set to "For Once in My Life". Bruno liked his energy, as Carrie Ann added, "The feet are a little funky, but you make up for it." Len concluded, "It's not your best but it's not your worst." The NFL player earned 23 points.
After Stevie's musical performance of "My Cherie Amour", Zendaya, Jacoby, Victor, Ingo and their respective partners teamed up for a team paso. They guys were shirtless, but they didn't win the judges' hearts as Carrie Ann said it was "like the guys were all doing solos on their own ... It was kind of a mess." The judges gave them 22 points.
Kellie, Sean, Andy and Aly danced a team samba, which got rave reviews. "It was like a reunion of the cast of 'Boogie Nights'," Bruno commented, while Carrie Ann praised them for showing unity. They got 25 points.
After the scores from the individual dance combined with the team dance, Kellie got the highest score of the night with 54 points. Aly trailed in the second place of the leaderboard with 52 points, followed close behind by Zendaya with 51 points.
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