From Argentine tango to Viennese waltz, the final round of Dancing With the Stars had a little bit of everything.
Finalists Mya, Kelly Osbourne and Donny Osmond danced three times apiece on night one of the ABC hit's two-part finale, which will culminate tomorrow with one of these endearing celebs being crowned queen or king of the ballroom.
Though neither Donny nor Mya has ever been in the bottom two (or three) and Kelly and her can-do attitude have obviously developed quite the following, voters' loyalties may well have shifted during the course of the evening, thanks to the hit-and-miss nature of the routines.
We always expect the anything-goes freestyles to be especially exciting...so perhaps that's why we're even more let down when they fail.
But we're getting ahead of ourselves. First came a Latin round. Then they did a group mega-mix, in which all three couples performed the same Viennese waltz, samba and jive choreography simultaneously.
We broke it all down for you:
ROUND 1: Latin
Kelly Osbourne & Louis van Amstel: Never has Kelly had such a sultry look in her eye as she did throughout this Argentine tango. Very hot and, of course, entirely appropriate for this dance, which showed how far the MTV brat turned reality-competition darling has come in nine weeks. Her footwork could have been a bit sharper, but Louis fully utilized the lifts-allowed policy, swinging her around and giving her multiple chances to exteeeend…"You epitomize what this competition is about…You came out and danced right up there," Len Goodman said. "Very sophisticated," Carrie Ann Inaba called it, though Bruno Tonioli would have liked even more sultriness.
Mya & Dmitry Chaplin: They continued to slay the competition, at least technically, with this fierce 'n' feisty paso doble. Another "right up there" from Len, who compared it to Mel B and Maks' paso, his favorite of all the seasons. "Mya," Carrie Ann began ominously, "I dub you…the queen of the paso doble!" "The power of Mya unleashed for all to admire," offered Bruno, who pronounced admire ,"ad-mya."
Donny Osmond & Kym Johnson: Donny loves his disco themes, doesn't he? Not as slinky as it could have been—but then again, we're talking Donny Osmond, not Mario Lopez! This fun-filled but decidedly unsteamy cha-cha was a decent start…but we're hoping there's more in the oven for later on. Carrie Ann called his performance a "breakthrough," however. "Where did those hips come from?!" she marveled. Bruno skipped his dance critique and talked about Donny the man: "This guy is a professional, a credit to his profession. I shouted at him for an hour…No attitude, he took every comment and he discovered parts he never had before! That is a star!"
ROUND 2: Mega-Mix!
Well, so much for unison. All started off prettily with the Viennese waltz, but then Louis had some issues ripping Kelly's skirt off, so they arrived a bit late to the samba portion. Things evened up again, but everyone seemed a wee bit off—though not when judged individually. All three stars were well-served by the waltz, samba and jive, and though Kelly was singled out for the lovely lines she brought to her waltz and Donny was compared to the professionals… Guess who swept all the first-place votes?
Scores: Kelly, 26; Donny, 28; Mya, 30
ROUND 3: Freestyle
Kelly & Louis: Well, she survived—but barely. We're not sure why the male pros think freestyle automatically equals disco cha-cha (Stacy Keibler, Laila Ali, et al. have all been subject), but that's how Louis interpreted it and Kelly ended up with the short end of the stick. There were more impressive lifts in their Argentine tango and the trickiest one they tried this round ended up with Kelly going kerplunk. She did look beautiful, as Bruno pointed out, but all the good tidings in the world were only good enough for a handful of 8's.
Mya & Dmitry: Dmitry, on the other hand, did not choreograph a disco cha-cha. Then again, he didn't really choreograph much of anything, really, to what otherwise would have been a great freestyle song, "You Can't Stop the Beat" from Hairspray. After some initial walking around and waving of the hands, we thought they were about to kick out a jive or something. But no. Just more waving of the hands. Of course, to be fair...There was some shimmying, too. All of the judges were disappointed by the lack of content and Marisa Jaret Winokur remains the Hairspray queen.
Donny & Kym: What better than a Broadway routine for the resident showman? Once again, a female DWTS pro had it up on her male counterparts. Donny's top-hat-and-tails number wasn't particularly difficult looking, but it was sharp, polished and super fun. Most important, Kym's choreography didn't sell Donny short. Hence their first perfect score of the season. "An absolute showstopper," approved Len, while Bruno called him a master "in the great tradition of Broadway, Hollywood, Vegas!" "Welcome to the hall of fame of the freestyle," raved Carrie Ann.
Here's how the leaderboard stacks up:
Mya & Dmitry: 87
Donny & Kym: 85
Kelly & Louis: 76
Whitney Houston performs on tomorrow's finale, and much time will be frittered away by various pursuits, including one more scorable dance from each finalist.
But when all is said and done, we're thinking Donny's going to win it all.
Dancing With the Stars signs off tomorrow, but tuning into So You Think You Can Dance will ease those withdrawal pangs. Catch up with the Fox hit's sixth season right here.