Those who don’t learn from history are doomed to repeat it. But on week two of “Dancing with the Stars,” James Van Der Beek had to learn from history and repeat it. When he played a version of himself on the sitcom “Don’t Trust the B in Apartment 23,” he had to learn a few seconds of cha cha when his character joined the cast of “DWTS.” Now he had to learn an entire cha cha routine for real. Did it go better for him now than it did for his on-screen alter ego, who couldn’t finish his routine because he accidentally got high before his performance? Watch it above, and see what the judges had to say about the performance below.
Len Goodman: “Another solid performance. Nice, crisp footwork. I liked the Cuban breaks. There were a few too many gimmicks going on. I didn’t like the slide. And when you jumped off of there I thought you were going to dance on the ceiling because you really took off. It was another solid performance. Cut out the gimmicks. Just give me dancing.” (SCORE: 6)
Bruno Tonioli: “Darling, don’t worry. James knows how to open big. It’s like the poster boy from ‘Fame’ — I want to dance forever! And those legs in the air, I thought it was loose. You’re getting close. It was a very showy performance. I loved it, almost like a Broadway cha cha. But I actually thought you missed a step.” (SCORE: 7)
Carrie Ann Inaba: “At the very beginning it’s just more that your lines weren’t matching when you got up from the knee slide. I think you were maybe off-balance … That’s where you looked a little out of sync. But right after the split jump and on, you were on fire. You were so clean, so precise. The way you used the floor — I’m not sure when you did that drag if your foot came off the ground … Other than that, it was a really fantastic way to start off the night.” (SCORE: 7)
His combined score (20 out of 30) was one point shy of his season premiere performance, and it left him in third place on the judges’ leaderboard this time out (behind Hannah Brown and Kate Flannery), but it was more than enough to keep him in the competition for another week. He advanced safely through to the next round, where he’ll try to get back on top.
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