updated 11/12/2012 AT 10:00 PM ET
•originally published 11/12/2012 AT 11:15 PM ET
After performing twice last week, the remaining couples on Dancing with the Stars had double duty again Monday night. Each pair performed a tribute to America’s troops as well as a trio dance with an eliminated pro or member of the DWTS troupe.
And it was a night of big scores! But the pressure is on ahead of Tuesday’s double elimination.
Keep reading for all the details …
Melissa Rycroft and Tony Dovolani furthered their lead after a night of perfect dancing. In the first round, they performed a quickstep that earned a standing ovation from the audience and 30 points from the judges. “It was like watching Ann Miller and Gene Kelly,” Bruno Tonioli said. “It was as good as the best America has ever produced.” Troupe member Henry Byalikov joined them for a trio paso doble in the second round – and another perfect score. “Of all of our celebrities,” said Len Goodman, “you impress me the most.”
Shawn Johnson and Derek Hough’s Viennese waltz at the beginning of the night was well received. “You’ve turned into a beautiful, rich, in-depth performer,” Carrie Ann Inaba said. They earned 29.5 points in the first round. But their trio with former partner Mark Ballas, a samba with tribal elements, caused a controversy in the ballroom. “It was very self-indulgent because there was very little samba content,” Len said. “If you go home tomorrow don’t blame me, blame those two.” The second dance earned 26 points.
Apolo Ohno zip-lined across the ballroom to kick off his tango with partner Karina Smirnoff. “It was like Tom Cruise in Mission Impossible,” Len said of the routine, which earned 29.5 points. “I absolutely loved it.” For their trio the pair did a jive with troupe member Sasha Farber and earned another 29 points.
Gilles Marini and Peta Murgatroyd’s quickstep to “Danger Zone” from Top Gun had a “few wobbles,” according to Carrie Ann. Still, they earned 29.5 points. In the second round of competition, the pair performed a super sexy salsa with Chelsie Hightower. “I loved how you came out and you took control of the dance floor,” Carrie Ann said of the routine, which earned them 29 more points.
Kelly Monaco proved she’s “growing every week,” according to Carrie Ann, who praised her 28-point Viennese waltz with Val Chmerkovskiy. Louis Van Amstel joined them for a trio jive in round two. “It had the F-factor,” Len said of the 28.5-point routine. “It was fun, it was fast, it was flamboyant and it was fabulous.”
Emmitt Smith and Cheryl Burke started off the night with a 28-point salsa that had Len saying, “This man puts the ‘ooh’ in smooth.” Kym Johnson joined them at the end of the night for a salsa that earned a perfect 30 points. “You were in the red-hot, spicy jalapeño zone,” Carrie Ann said.
Once again at the bottom are Kirstie Alley and Maksim Chmerkovskiy, who performed a Viennese waltz, which Len called their “very best dance,” but earned just 27 points. Tristan MacManus joined them for a trio paso doble that Bruno said was “like watching Valley of the Dolls.” “It did lack a bit of finesse,” Len agreed. Their second routine scored just 24 points.