Forget the relays and the redos! The freestyles are the highlight of the "Dancing With the Stars" finale, and Monday night was no exception as the final four couples went freestyle wild, supersize style. But first they had to get through a Judges' Pick round as well as cha-cha relay. Here's how the final four fared, and who could be in danger of losing the chance for Tuesday night's final dance.
Round 1: Judges' Pick
Jacoby Jones and Karina Smirnoff kicked off the first round with a Ravens-inspired jive after judge Len Goodman taught the Super Bowl champ some of his own fancy footwork. While Len thought the NFL star showed improvement, Bruno Tonioli thought he missed a few beats and was a tad flat-footed. When Carrie Ann Inaba agreed, Jacoby asked her, "Can you wear cleats? I can't wear heels!"
Next up was Aly Raisman and her partner, Mark Ballas, who took on the samba, a dance they previously had trouble with in Week 5. This time, the Olympic champ channeled her inner Shakira for a supersexy samba. Carrie Ann told the teen she's a combination of everyone else who's in the finals: "You have the swagger like Jacoby, the beautiful lines like Kellie (Pickler), then you've got the musicality and sensuality that Zendaya's (Coleman) got."
Kellie and partner Derek Hough made quick work of the quickstep, causing Len to give the strangest critique of the season: "I was palpitating, perspirating, and I got so excited I was nearly flatulating." He praised the couple's connection — something that was lacking the last time they attempted the dance: "Like a stamp on letter," he said. The other judges agreed and pulled out their number 10 paddles in succession.
And Disney star Zendaya and her bloodied and bruised partner, Val Chmerkovskiy (the pro got hit in the eye just one hour before the live show), dazzled the judges with a spicy samba. Len called the dance "eye-popping, show-stopping, and jaw-dropping" and praised a little-seen move that he hadn't seen "since the Falkland Crisis." Score: Perfect 30.
Round 2: Cha-Cha Relay
For this finale twist, all four couples danced a 40-second cha-cha solo in which they vied for 2 to 5 points added to their score. While Jacoby showed off his leapfrog skills, even jumping over Kellie's head and sliding under Aly's legs, he and Karina landed in fourth place for the relay, earning 2 points. Zendaya and Val came in first, with Kellie and Derek and Aly and Mark, scoring second and third place, respectively.
Round 3: Freestyle
And finally, it was time to supersize it! The all-important freestyle round (some say it's the make-or-break dance of the finals) did not disappoint. Jacoby and Karina paid tribute to New Orleans with a Baltimore flair, complete with hip-hop moves and pint-sized guest dancers. And while the judges loved the celebratory vibe, Carrie Ann thought the themes outshined the NFL star. The couple ended the night with a total score of 56 points.
Aly and Mark performed a futuristic freestyle tailored to showcase the gymnast's amazing body strength. They even climbed a pole and then danced around it, prompting Carrie Ann to name-drop: "I worked the pole on Madonna's tour, and that is not easy," she said. Total score (after a perfect 30 for this freestyle): 61 points.
Kellie and Derek opted to dance a stripped-down freestyle that featured bending and twisting that only the most limber dancer could pull off. The "American Idol" alum brought Carrie Ann to tears, while Len gave the dance a rare standing O. Come score time, all the judges gifted the duo with 10s, with Len even adding, "It should be an 11!"
And Zendaya and Val appealed to her tween fan base by bringing in child dancers to help out with their combo cha-cha/contemporary freestyle. (The Justin Bieber soundtrack didn't hurt either.) The "Shake It Up" star received massive praise for being a classy role model for kids, with Carrie Ann telling her, "You sealed the deal." Zendaya and Val received a perfect score, bringing their tally to 65 perfect points, the highest of the night.
Now, with the judges' scores tallied, it's time to cue up Donna Summer, because Monday's show signaled the last dance for one unlucky couple — we just don't know who yet.
Here's the full list of scores from Week 10 of "Dancing With the Stars":
- Jacoby Jones and Karina Smirnoff: 27 points/ 2 points/ 27 points (Total: 56 points)
- Aly Raisman and Mark Ballas: 28 points/3 points/30 points (Total: 61 points)
- Kellie Pickler and Derek Hough: 30 points /4 points/30 points (Total: 64 points)
- Zendaya Coleman and Val Chmerkovskiy: 30 points/ 5 points/ 30 points (Total: 65 points)
Watch the full episode:
The "Dancing With the Stars" Season 16 finale airs on Tuesday, 5/21 at 9 PM on ABC.
- Sports & Recreation
- Karina Smirnoff
- Jacoby Jones
- Len Goodman
- Carrie Ann Inaba
- Derek Hough
- Aly Raisman
- Mark Ballas
- Val Chmerkovskiy