The Cheetah is still a tough one to beat-a.
Samantha Harris is back, so Drew Lachey is not. Already we're ahead of the game (as are the Indians, BTW). ...
Mark Cuban and Kym lead off. Viennese waltz to "Mr. Bojangles." All righty, then. Footwork all right but his upper body still looks too uncomfortable. And the goofy expressions are back in force. Judges: Len makes a snide joke about Mark looking better when Len has his eyes shut, gets booed, defends it as a joke; then says this was Mark's best dance. Bruno says he started well but that sometimes he's "Bigfoot in a suit." Carrie Ann praises his not singing along as he dances, and calls him fun to watch. Samantha's interview is about as vapid as Drew's were, but more smoothly delivered. Scores: 7's from CA and Bruno, 8 from Len. If that's a reliable indicator of tonight's scores, we're going to see a bunch of 10's. But that assumes a scoring logic that is rarely there.
Sabrina Bryan and Mark next. Paso doble. Not my favorite of their performances but still fierce. Bruno calls her "just incredible." CA calls it "perfection." Len says he couldn't find anything wrong with it. Scores: Triple 10's. Maybe there is scoring logic at work.
Jane Seymour and Tony. Viennese waltz. Pretty, which is Seymour's strength, but not much work in it. CA calls it gorgeous but considers they pushed the rule about lifts; Len argues that it was all right. CA wishes for instant replay. Len tries to shrug off the lift issue. Bickering all around. Len finally calls it a great job. Bruno says it was "just delicious."
The bride has used the miracle of DVR to check; definitely a lift. Scores: 8 from CA, 9's from the other two. Outrageously generous. But Tony is snarling about no lift; Samantha shows a bit of the replay where Jane is being lifted, and Tony and Jane still argue. Whine whine whine.
Floyd Mayweather and Karina. Paso doble. I've believed that before this week he has gotten jobbed by the judges, but he's not too good tonight. A lot of uneasiness in his upper body, and it appeared that the last lift was mishandled. Len says Floyd gives his all but loses control, but it's still "bloody good job." Bruno says "this is your dance." CA raises the lift issue again, but says the improvement is great. Scores: CA 7, 8's from the others.
Mel B and Maksim. Viennese waltz. Classy, smooth, so much better than Jane. Bruno says "sweet dreams are made of this." CA talks about her "sensual elegance" but says her shoulders were up and she needs work on her spotting; Bruno argues. Len praises the choreography and calls Mel "a revelation" even though she "missed a couple of heel leads." Scores: CA, 8; Len and Bruno, 9 each, same as Jane's scores and therefore too low.
Cameron Mathison and Edyta. Paso doble. Working off a Superman theme. Will there be lift issues with this? Not really sold on the dance as a dance. Bits and pieces. CA is beside herself -- grounded, lines beautiful, notes the lift but lets it go. Len calls it "absolutely great." Bruno says "Superman is back." Scores: Straight 9's.
Marie Osmond and Jonathan. Viennese waltz. Fair. Len calls it gentle but lovely. Bruno says it was lovely, but he didn't see a great character as he has in other dances, and gets booed. CA liked "the newfound tenderness." Scores: 9's from CA and Len, 8 from Bruno. I don't get their love for Marie. (And hey, Samantha really needs to rethink that top.)
Jennie Garth and Derek. Paso doble. She has definitely stepped up the last couple of weeks. She's not only dancing well, she's taking the character thing that the judges have praised Marie so much for. Bruno says the choreography was superb. CA raises the lift issue yet again, and says she's taking off a point for it. Len calls it "blooming fantastic." Scores: CA, 8; Len, 10; Bruno, 9.
Helio Castroneves and Julianne to close. Viennese waltz. Helio thinks Julianne wants to teach him "too many things." Actual dance is very snazzy, but we'll probably hear a lift comment. CA thanks Julianne for keeping her toes on the ground, and says Helio makes her happy to be alive. Len says Helio has revved it up again, aside from a bad head move. Bruno calls them "the glittering combo." Scores: Straight 9's.
Final comments: The scoring remains a mystery. Nice to have Samantha back and Drew gone. Sabrina and Jennie were probably my faves tonight, with Sabrina a commanding first, and with Helio third. And the Indians are still winning, 4-0 right now.