A slow starter of an episode that picked up quite a bit by the end there.
I'm not sure if this is controversial or not, but I totally love Adam Shankman as a guest judge. He's like the perfect combination of Mary's enthusiasm, Nigel's concern for the dancers, and Mia's weirdness. He's lovely. And I wanted to smack the shit out of Nigel and Mary for that whole "Adam is so longwinded and boring zzzzzzz" thing while Adam was giving actual productive advice rather than screaming like a banshee or hitting on the girls. Jesus, you guys.
Anyway, as for the performances:
Kherington and Twitch
Hip-Hop (Napoleon and Tabitha)
I thought Kherington picked up the hip-hop stuff pretty damn well for a newbie, though it seems the choreography was dumbed down to that end, so Twitch didn't end up getting to dazzle as much as he might have. Still, they're the best, so even when they're merely good, they're still great.
Courtney and Gev
Rumba (Tony Meredith)
Oh my god, I love these two so much, and I thought they really delivered tonight, Glad the judges finally got onboard with these two. [EDIT: And also nice of the judges to finally get on the "Gev looks like Dominic" train, only two weeks late, but they failed to add the requisite "only not as troll-like" caveat.] Big props to Courtney for wearing that dress too -- she's got thick legs, and she's not afraid to show them. Their chemistry is off the chain, too; my sister and I vowed to track down Courtney's boyfriend and kidnap him so C&G can get together. ...Oh, calm down, it's just an idea we're batting around.
Comfort and Chris
Jazz (Tyce Diorio)
Ugh. Uninspiring. I just don't like them, and every week my desire to see what Comfort might be able to do with a different (better) partner continues. After three weeks, there is wheat and there is chaff in this competition, and I'd just as soon get rid of all the chaff at once. That means these guys.
Will and Jessica
I could go back to the DVR and refresh my memory, but if I can't remember even the genre of dance they performed not an hour later, I think that says enough about my general apathy for Will and continued dislike of Jessica.
[EDIT: Oh right, disco. This was the routine where Will picked Jess up and spun her around about fifty times, which to me came across as kind of desperate. But the judges managed to slobber over Will again, with Nigel even complimenting his technique on the Saturday Night Fever pose, which is kind of excessive. I did think it was cute (though not fooling anybody) when Jess put her hand on the floor after Will needed balance at the end.]
Kourtni and Matt
I'm pretty sure I'm one of those people Nigel was talking about who would prefer the emotionality (new word?) of a Mia Michaels routine to the Manson-esque grotesquerie of whatever Sonya put together. That said, I thought Kourtni and Matt danced it perfectly well. I worry about them, and I'll get to that in a moment, but for now I'll say that I'm glad they did well and that the judges seem to be giving them a damn break.
Chelsea and Thayne
Quickstep (That Lady)
The judges ripped them about six new a-holes, but I thought it was pretty good for a quickstep. Though Nigel was right about the smiling -- that's like my number one obstacle to loving Thayne's gay ADD (gay-DD?) ass.
Mark and Chelsie
Hip-Hop (Napoleon and Tabitha)
Once again, I'm with the judges in their appreciation of Napoleon and Tabitha's "lyrical hip-hop" style. They've delivered and then some. And how about Mark (MY BOY!) and Chelsie just kicking total ass on this one? It took me a while to come around on them (longer for her), but they're at the top of my list right now. This is another pair that I feel are finally getting their due from the judges.
Joshua and Katee
Samba (Tony Meredith)
Technically perfect, if not as emotionally affecting as some of the other dances. But what can you say about Josh and Katee? They're flawless. And Katee's new haircut is awesome.
So, in order, here's how I see this week:
1. Mark and Chelsie
2. Courtney and Gev
3. Joshua and Katee
4. Kherington and Twitch
5. Kourtni and Matt
6. Chelsea and Thayne
7. Will and Jessica
8. Comfort and Chris
This is my same Top 4 (different order) as last week, as the cream of the crop are really starting to separate themselves. I'd put those last three couples as this week's Bottom Three, but I'm super worried about Kourtni and Matt. Even I, who really like them, forget about them a whole lot. Being a solid #5 in a group of 8 is really not a great position to be in. I'm confident the judges will keep them safe, but they'll be dancing for their lives this week, I'd bet.
[Photos to come once the FOX site updates.]