‘Dancing with the Stars’: Who really gave the best performance on ‘Face Off Night’?

Did the “Dancing with the Stars” judges get it right on Monday night, when the contestants performed in face-off battles for immunity? See my breakdown of last night’s dances below.

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Babyface vs. Jana Kramer — Jive
Initial Prediction: I thought this would be a close match-up. I gave the edge to Jana.

Both couples lacked the energy and excitement that comes along with doing the jive. Babyface was surprisingly stiff throughout his dance, and Jana began losing steam halfway through hers.

Result: Jana scored 26 out of 40 from the judges, while Babyface scored 25, giving Jana immunity. I agree with this decision. She had a slightly better routine than Babyface.

Rick Perry vs. Vanilla Ice — Paso Doble
Initial Prediction: On paper, it looked like Vanilla Ice was the favorite since he outscored Rick the previous two weeks.

Rick’s Paso consisted of a lot of stomping around and lacked the attack needed for this dance. Vanilla Ice’s dance was more entertaining, but he too lacked the right technique and intensity for the paso doble.

Result: Both dancers scored the same (23), but Vanilla Ice won on judge Len Goodman‘s tie-breaking vote. Not surprised by the result.

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James Hinchcliffe vs. Ryan Lochte– Cha-Cha
Initial Prediction: I gave James the edge on this, but I wasn’t sure if either star had the hip action needed for the cha cha.

James has the technique down, but he looked a bit stiff throughout the dance. With Ryan’s routine, I felt that his pro partner Cheryl Burke danced around him a lot.

Result: James scored 29, Ryan scored 25 — predictable. James is a better dancer than Ryan by a mile.

Terra Jole vs. Calvin Johnson– Viennese Waltz
Initial Prediction: Another toss up, but my prediction was that Terra and partner Sasha Farber would win the dance-off to ensure that she stays another week.

In my opinion this was one of the better battles of the night: Terra brought the emotion, and Calvin brought the charm.

Result: Calvin won with a score of 32 compared to Terra’s 30. I was shocked by this. I thought that Terra would take this. I would start looking at Calvin and his partner Lindsay Arnold as serious contenders for the Mirror Ball Trophy.

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Amber Rose vs. Maureen McCormick– Salsa
Initial Prediction: My expectation was that Amber would win this.

It was great to see Amber let loose with this dance. However, I ultimately had to give Maureen the edge as her routine had more technique than Amber’s.

Result: Maureen outscored Amber, 28-to-25. This was Amber’s to loose, but Maureen really did have the better routine.

Laurie Hernandez vs. Marilu Henner– Tango
Initial Prediction: Battle of the “ringers.” Marilu’s partner Derek Hough has created several memorable tangos in past seasons, so I thought this would be the dance to finally break Marilu from the rest of the pack.

WOW! Laurie and partner Val Chmerkovskiy’s tango was amazing. I honestly didn’t think she would be able to pull off the passion and chemistry needed for the tango. And I loved the beginning of Marilu’s dance; I felt the passion and chemistry between her and Derek, but I did notice a few stumbles in the middle of her dance.

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Result: Laurie scored 31 to Marilu’s 28. I definitely thought Marlu and Derek would win this, but Laurie truly earned it.

Here are my overall rankings for the night (judges’ leaderboard rankings are in parentheses):

1. Laurie Hernandez (2nd)
2. Calvin Johnson (1st)
3. Terra Jole (3rd)
4. James Hinchcliffe (4th)
5. Marilu Henner (5th)
6. Maureen McCormick (5th)
7. Jana Kramer (7th)
8. Babyface (8th)
9. Ryan Lochte (8th)
10. Amber Rose (8th)
11. Vanilla Ice (11th)
12. Rick Perry (11th)

My prediction for tonight’s elimination: Amber Rose, even though Rick Perry is the lowest scoring dancer for the third week in a row.


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