First off, everyone kept their clothes on tonight.
The dances ranged from foxtrots and tangos to sambas and rumbas as the 10 remaining celebs on Dancing With the Stars were tasked Monday with telling a story about the most memorable year of his or her life.
Let's see, did anyone stand a chance against J.R. Martinez and his memories of being critically injured at 19 while serving in Iraq when his Humvee hit a landmine?
To put it frankly, no. Each star had a unique and, in some cases, very emotional story, but J.R.'s was the real tearjerker.
And, happily, his survival story combined forces with a 26-caliber rumba for a performance that was memorable for all the right reasons .
Ricki Lake followed last week's first-place performance with another bar-raising, leaderboard-topping routine, a rumba dedicated to a rough year that culminated in her meeting Christian Evans, who's now her fiancé.
Chynna Phillips partied like it was 1990, dancing a sensual rumba to Wilson Phillips' "Hold On" in a nod at her past struggles with addiction, overcoming her self-destructive tendencies and meeting hubby Billy Baldwin.
"Hold on for one more day? Dancing like that you're going to be here for weeks and weeks," noted head judge Len Goodman, who said that the singer took the competition to a "whole new level."
Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler was in the house to cheer on Kristin Cavallari, who may be his ex-fiancée but appears to still be a very important lady in his life. The former Hills star danced an upbeat samba to Beyoncé's "Crazy in Love"—a big hit when she hit the big-time, natch.
Speaking of life-changing moments, Carson Kressley—a vision in hot-pink satin—tangoed to the No Doubt version of "It's My Life," a hot tune in 2003 when Queer Eye for the Straight Guy premiered and he became a household name.
"Carson, I...love...you!" Carrie Ann Inaba raved. "A little bit of girly-girly, a little-little masculine. Very nice!" Len added, "You put the 'boy' in flamboyance!"
Rob Kardashian may not have known what Guys & Dolls was when Bruno Tonioli compared him favorably to Marlon Brando and Frank Sinatra, but the judges didn't hold it against him.
Not one bit, in fact. Rob, whom Carrie Ann described as "debonair and charming," not only got his first 8 for a fox-trot dedicated to his late dad—he got three 8's. (Though he was surpassed later on, Rob went first tonight and got the highest score of the season at that time.)
Carrie Ann and Bruno felt that Chaz Bono lacked focus during his rumba—a very difficult dance because it's so slow and, therefore, every movement counts—but Len thought it was his best performance yet!
"Well, I liked what Len had to say," Chaz, who danced to dad Sonny Bono's "Laugh at Me," said afterward. Despite the positivity from the crusty Brit, Chaz still got only a trio of 6's for his efforts.
Nancy Grace's waltz, in honor of the birth of her twins, was positively chaste compared to last week's nip-hinting quickstep. The waltz was just OK, but her little son and daughter out in the audience were an adorable sight to behold.
But what of David Arquette, who was in danger of elimination last week? As is the case with almost everything he does, he dedicated his rumba to daughter Coco—and it showed in his intensity and graceful determination. (And nice abs, BTW.)
Here's how the leaderboard stacked up:
Ricki Lake & Derek Hough: 27
Chynna Phillips & Tony Dovolani: 26
J.R. Martinez & Karina Smirnoff: 26
David Arquette & Kym Johnson: 24
Hope Solo & Maksim Chmerkovskiy: 24
Kristin Cavallari & Mark Ballas: 24
Rob Kardashian & Cheryl Burke: 24
Carson Kressley & Anna Trebunskaya: 23
Nancy Grace & Tristan MacManus: 21
Chaz Bono & Lacey Schwimmer: 18
Personal bests all around, but someone's got to go home tomorrow night. Who should it be?