There was double the trouble in the ballroom on Dancing with the Stars, when the contestants faced off in two challenges, including an instant-dance. After trading top spots on the leader board over the course of the season, Brandy and Jennifer Grey tied for first place Monday with almost perfect scores.
And, once again, Bristol Palin found herself at the bottom of the leader board. Could this be the young mom’s last dance? Her Argentine tango with Mark Ballas earned all eights but lacked intensity, according to Len Goodman. But the studio audience disagreed, erupting in boos following the judge’s critique.
During their instant-dance challenge, which allowed each couple mere minutes to finalize a routine to a song randomly selected earlier in the show, Carrie Ann Inaba said Bristol wasn’t “musically connected” to her samba. Mark claimed responsibility for the mistakes, and the duo earned the two eights and a seven, bringing them to a total of 47 points out of a possible 60.
Brandy and Maksim Chmerkovskiy dominated the first round when the judges dished out two tens and a nine for their waltz, which Carrie Ann said left her “spellbound.” “It was like a symphony – it was like a poem,” gushed Bruno Tonioli. But they came in third for their instant dance, earning two nines and a ten during the high-scoring round.
“I loved all of it,” Bruno said of their cha cha to Katy Perry‘s “Teenage Dream.” But Carrie Ann was displeased with the choreography, and her critique left Maks seething.
First Perfect Score
Jennifer and Derek Hough claimed the first perfect score of the season – 10! 10! 10! – for their rumba to Foreigner’s “Waiting For a Girl Like You,” which Bruno called “flawless.” The pair earned straight nines for their quickstep earlier in the evening, which also brought them 57 points.
Kyle Massey and Lacey Schwimmer came in at a close second with 56 points after earning straight nines with their Viennese waltz during round one. Carrie Ann compared their performance to “watching a fairy tale come to life.” The duo set the bar high when the judges dished out two tens and a nine for their instant jive to “Good Golly Miss Molly.” Carrie Ann said that their routine was the most fun she’s ever had as a viewer.
Meanwhile, NFL star Kurt Warner and Anna Trebunskaya landed just one point from the bottom of the leader board with a total of 48. After their waltz to The Eagles’ “Take It To the Limit,” Carrie Ann conceded that Kurt is “not quite at the same level as some of the other [contestants].” Of their cha cha to No Doubt’s “Hella Good,” Len said simply, “your performance was good.” Kurt and Anna earned straight eights for both dances.
What You Didn’t See
• Derek Hough has a plan for staying in the good graces of his partners’ boyfriends and husbands after performing sexy dances like Monday’s perfect rumba with Jennifer Grey. He bows to them. “I give respect to the boyfriends or husbands of whomever I’m dancing with,” he told PEOPLE. “The love dance is over; thank you very much for giving me the pleasure of dancing the rumba with your wife or girlfriend.”
• Maksim Chmerkovskiy apologized for his reaction to Carrie Ann Inaba’s criticism of his choreography during the instant-dance challenge. “I want to apologize to the audience for that,” he told PEOPLE after the show. “But it was so unfair for them to put Brandy aside and focus the spotlight on me … This is about her, and it’s not fair.”
• Kurt Warner and Anna Trebunskaya were more disappointed by their scores than they may have appeared in the ballroom. “We’ve gotten picked on more than anyone else,” he told PEOPLE. “I know I’m not a perfect dancer, and I know tens are probably going to be rare for us, but I think we do a lot of good things.”
• Eliminated Dancing contestant Margaret Cho came out to support her season-11 costars Monday night. The comedian told PEOPLE backstage that she’s been keeping up her dancing by attending classes taught by her former partner Louis Van Amstel.