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'Dancing With the Stars' recap: Latin Night, first celebrity goes home

September 24, 2013|By Allyssa Lee
  • Keyshawn Johnson, right, and pro partner Sharna Burgess take a bow.
Keyshawn Johnson, right, and pro partner Sharna Burgess take a bow. (Adam Taylor / ABC )

In this super-concentrated “Dancing With the Stars” format, this jam-packed parade of fringe and sparkles, paddles, the Troupe, a glimpse of the Harold Wheeler band and the dreaded elimination can seem like quite the bedazzled swirl.

But on Monday night, Season 17 sent its first star out of the glitterverse, a casualty of having the lowest combined total of judges’ scores and viewer votes.

Turns out the latest entrant into the Losers’ Club were Keyshawn Johnson and Sharna Burgess. Surprising to see a sports figure reach the "DWTS" end zone so quickly, as the athletes usually have great Gatorade buckets of voting support.

And though Keyshawn was short on votes and scores, this commentator was not short on words. “For a guy who’s never even bobbed his head in the car, the fact that I can have the experience to dance and learn what dancing is all about, and Sharna teaching me, is something amazing to me,” he said.

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“Don’t let them give you too hard of a time on ESPN,” host Tom Bergeron cautioned.

Elizabeth Berkley Lauren and Val Chmerkovskiy were saved from having to walk down the green mile grand staircase, and Bill Engvall and Emma Slater was the other couple in jeopardy (though not necessarily in the bottom two).

Before the elimination, we got an eyeful of Latin Night performances. Here’s how Week 2 played out:

Coming up on top of this week’s leaderboard (though second in total points) were Corbin Bleu and Karina Smirnoff. Though let’s be honest: This routine was right in the “High School Musical” alum’s wheelhouse. Corbin really hearkened back to his Wildcat roots in his jive. Corbin’s the baseball star who jives straight into nerdy-hot Karina’s heart. To say Corbin’s jive wasn’t all sorts of fun would be to call apple pie un-American. “Do it again!” Carrie Ann squealed (too bad encore dances are out in this one-day-a-week format!). “I love your athleticism, your musicality is spot on. You turned every movement out, but there’s this raw edge to it … exciting!” Len said there was no doubt Corbin can dance, “for me not quite a home run, but you got to third base,” the head judge announced without a hint of irony. “A little sharper near the end on the footwork.” “This was a performance of dazzling brilliance,” Bruno announced. “The way you hit the beat like HD 3-D.” What team? Wildcats! Jive: 26. Total: 50 out of 60.

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Elizabeth Berkley Lauren and Val Chmerkovskiy had the unenviable task of going first in the competition. Their second dance was the samba, which Val described as a lot of “booty-shaking” and Elizabeth immediately translated to Twitter-speak: #thrustit. And the whip fast routine, impressive turns, and Val’s open-chested lace ensemble gave Lizzie a leg up at the end. Steven Tyler liked it. “That was so close,” Len beamed. “Just a tiny little thing, but … it was absolutely fantastic.” “I think I’m coming down with scarlet fever!” Bruno swooned. “You are in your element,” Carrie Ann approved. “You are just this strong sensuous dancer who’s so in charge of your body.” The routine had Val all hot and bothered as well. “Around such a gem like Elizabeth, I have to do my best,” the media-friendly Chmerkovskiy demurred. All together now: Aw! That just about made up for last week’s Kapowski kerfuffle. Samba: 25. Total: 49.

Christina Milian and Mark Ballas were tasked with a paso doble by way of Lady Gaga. Mark, while not hiking up his shorts to terrifying levels, crafted a fierce sexy cool "Game of Thrones-y" smoke monster of a paso for his multihyphenate partner, whose confidence has grown about as bright as the glowing red of her hair. “I love a paso with a twist and plenty of quirks,” Bruno approved. “There is no more problems with confidence,” Carrie Ann confirmed. “The stylization is remarkable.” “You were focused, you were fierce, and I tell you, that was terrific,” Len agreed. Paso doble: 25. Total: 47.

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