Clarice and Jess: Jive (Tony Meredith and Melanie LaPatin)
Wonderful moment in rehearsal as Melanie challenges Jess with an, "Is that as high as you can kick?" I love that lady. As much as I worried about hip-hop being out of their style, jive could not be more made for these two. Jess in particular. The lifts still look labored, but that's quickly overshadowed by Jess doing a split and then bouncing -- to the beat! -- on his splayed thighs. And I could watch Jess kick for days. What a fun routine! I have to say, while Melanie and Marko are obviously in a class above, Jess and Clarice have definitely established themselves as solidly the second-best pair. Sonya loves it like ten times, and while Nigel notes the lift issues (look, people, Jess is short; some of this cannot be helped), it seems he's more concerned with giving the voters reasons not to stay complacent. Surprisingly, Mary's critical of the routine and says she missed the joy of the jive, at least in Jess's performance. Wow, really? I usually defer to Mary in all things ballroom, but I can't cosign that at all. Jesse, in his final critique, takes a moment to stump for the Emmy candidacy of one Cat Deeley, OH YES HE DID! Cat genuinely blushes; "I might actually cry!" You deserve it, lady. Jesse Tyler Ferguson, I could kiss you for that.
Melanie and Marko's tango
Clarice and Jess's hip-hop
Clarice and Jess's jive
Ryan and Ricky's cha-cha
Jordan and Tadd's contemporary
Melanie and Marko's contemporary
Caitlynn and Mitchell's jazz
Caitlynn and Mitchell's hip-hop
Sasha and Alexander's jazz
Ryan and Ricky's Broadway
Jordan and Tadd's Broadway
Sasha and Alexander's paso doble
Tomorrow night! Top Ten dancers! If I had to guess, I'd say Mitchell, Caitlynn, Ryan, and Ricky are most in danger, though I still hold out hope that Alexander could get dumped. And we also find out the all-stars. Gimmie Jakob! Gimmie Jeanine! Bring back Pasha and Anya!
Joe R could go on for a while on the subject of All-Star requests (Janette! Sara! Chelsie Hightower!). Questions, comments, and unadulterated love can be sent to him at firstname.lastname@example.org.