“Maks is very intense,” said Vanessa Lachey about training for her “Ballroom Night” foxtrot on “Dancing with the Stars” with her pro partner Maksim Chmerkovskiy, one of the most demanding pros on the show. “But at the same time, my dad was in the military — ‘You need to be downstairs at 0700 hours.’ With Maks it’s kind of the same. He demands perfection.” It’s always hard to know how a celeb will respond to the kind of strict teaching style that Chmerkovskiy demonstrates, and the clip package ended with a bloody injury to Lachey’s toe. Things were looking pretty dicey, but we needn’t have worried — Lachey tied Jordan Fisher and Victoria Arlen for the best score of the night. She received straight 8s for a total of 24 out of 30.
Judge Bruno Tonioli compared her to a “love goddess. It was like watching Ava Gardner at her sultriest, with a little bit of Jessica Rabbit thrown in for good measure. As a foxtrot, it could not be foxier.” Carrie Ann Inaba added, “You’re a superstar … Your movements are stunning. You are like liquid gold when you move. Tonight everything was so polished.” And Len Goodman was at his pithiest when he told them, plainly and simply, “I liked it.”
Going into “Ballroom Night” Lachey was an underdog for the Mirror Ball Trophy with 40/1 odds, but that’s likely to change going into week three. Then again, the week’s not over yet for the contestants. They still have to contend with “Latin Night” on Tuesday night — two live shows in a row, two new dances in a row, so let’s hope all the celebs have the stamina for round two.
Do you agree with the judges that Lachey gave one of the very best performance of the night? Watch her routine above and then vote in our poll below.