They didn’t get a perfect score, or anywhere close to it, but one couple on “Dancing with the Stars: All-Stars” gave the judges their biggest thrill in fifteen seasons.
Shawn Johnson and Derek Hough performed an intensely acrobatic quickstep that caught judges Carrie Ann Inaba, Bruno Tonioli and even Len Goodman, by surprise.
It was iconic dance night on “DWTS,” and the returning competing celebrities picked numbers from the past to redo, with inspired twists, of course, and Shawn decided she and Derek had the drive to redo Helio Castroneves and Julianne Hough’s famed banana dance quickstep from Season 5.
It began with the pair flipping off trampolines, before they quickstepped wildly across the floor, flipping each other around, kicking like crazy. And it ended when the duo fell off the stairs (on purpose) on to safety mats.
“This is a classic, one of the best dances, if not the best dance I’ve seen in 15 seasons in America,” Bruno exclaimed. “You broke the rules, but my God, I’m never gonna forget this.”
Carrie Ann too was totally floored.
“That was by far the best dance we have ever seen on ‘Dancing with the Stars,’” she said.
All of the judges said they had to deduct points for the pair breaking the rules, but they did not specify which rule the couple trampled over. (It may have had to do with the flips.)
As a result, Derek and Shawn earned 26.5 out of 30 points – 9 from Carrie Ann, 8 from Len and 9.5 from Bruno.
While Shawn and Derek were high-flying, it was a rougher road for Bristol Palin and partner Mark Ballas, who were the other big headline of the night after “DWTS” showed their emotional argument, which happened as they rehearsed for their Week 3 dance (Derek Hough and Joanna Krupa’s paso doble from Season 9).
Bristol told Mark she thought he was “bummed” because he didn’t “have Sabrina [Bryan] or Shawn” as his partner.
Mark insisted that was not the case.
“I’ve been on this show 11 seasons now. And I don’t always get a Shawn or Sabrina,” Mark said, referring to the two women (who are back this season), who are very strong dancers. “I’ve had those [type of] girls twice. It has nothing to do with it. Absolutely noting.”
Bristol’s emotions appeared to stem from Mark missing one practice and her believing his heart wasn’t in it.
“You’re not there. Like I swear to God, I feel like you wanna go home,” she said.
The two patched things up and managed to compete, tackling the paso doble with a chess theme.
The dance was an improvement for the pair and they earned their best score of the competition – 22.5 out of 30 – but it still put them at the bottom of the leaderboard.
Over at the top of the leaderboard for Week 3 was a place shared by two couples – original “DWTS” winner Kelly Monaco and partner Valentin Chmerkvosky (aka Val), and Melissa Rycroft and Tony Dovolani.
Kelly and Valentin (Val) took on Mel B and Maksim Chmerkovskiy’s paso doble from Season 5 and gave a stunning performance of the number that had the crowd screaming.
“I’m tingling with pleasure. Wonderful darling,” Bruno said.
“You guys are the couple to watch!” Carrie Ann added as the pair earned 27 out of 30.
Also earning 27 out of 30 was Melissa and Tony’s rendition of J.R. Martinez and Karina Smirnoff’s sexy samba from Season 13.
Carrie Ann called it a “superstar samba,” and Len said it was a “knockout.”
Two celebs will go home on Tuesday’s elimination show.
In addition, on the elimination night, the remaining couples will pick dances for their fellow competitors to do in Week 4.
Paula Abdul will also serve as a guest judge on Oct. 15.
The Leaderboard for Week 3:
Melissa Rycroft & Tony Dovolani’s samba earned 27/30
Kelly Monaco & Valentin Chmerkovskiy’s paso doble earned 27/30
Shawn Johnson & Derek Hough’s quickstep earned 26.5/30
Apolo Anton Ohno & Karina Smirnoff’s foxtrot earned 25.5/30
Gilles Marini & Peta Murgatroyd tried the tango and earned 25.5/30
Sabrina Bryan and Louis van Amstel’s paso doble earned 25.5/30
Helio Castroneves & Chelsie Hightower’s quickstep earned 25.5/30
Emmitt Smith and Cheryl Burke’s paso doble earned 25/30
Kirstie Alley & Maksim Chmerkovsky’s cha cha earned 24/30
Drew Lachey & Anna Trebunskay cha cha’d their way to 24/30
Bristol Palin & Mark Ballas’ paso doble earned 22.5/30
-- Jolie Lash