It was the moment everyone had been waiting for on "Dancing With the Stars" -- Cher week! The iconic singer replaced Len Goodman as a guest judge and also performed twice, and the couples danced to some of Cher's greatest hits. With such a legendary performer at the judging table, the pressure was on for the couples to deliver not only great technique, but also a certain star quality.
Monday night, there was also a dance-off challenge, where the couples faced off to 30-second clips of the same music. The highest-scoring couple of the night would be immune from the challenge, while the others had to strategically choose which couple they wanted to oppose on the dance floor. The winners of each round of the dance-off could earn up to three points from the judges, boosting their individual scores.
Brant Daugherty's attention was somewhat divided this week, as he also had to work on the set of "Pretty Little Liars." That meant he had less time to rehearse his foxtrot with Peta Murgatroyd, set to Cher's "Shoop Shoop Song (It's In His Kiss)"from her movie "Mermaids." He struggled a bit with timing during rehearsals, but he gained a boost of confidence when he took Peta to visit the set of "Pretty Little Liars" and meet some of his costars. On the dance floor, the pair delivered a technically solid dance with plenty of charisma, but Carrie Ann and Bruno said he still had to smooth out some of the rough edges. Cher, however, said Brant had that certain unnamable star quality she looks for when she's auditioning her own dancers. Unfortunately, even that high praise from Cher wasn't enough to save Brant and Peta: Their individual scores, combined with their scores from the dance-off, were not enough to save them, and they were sent home. Total score: 27 out of 30
Corbin Bleu was also distracted this week due to an emergency related to a movie he's currently producing. He often had to stop and take phone calls during rehearsal, frustrating his partner Karina Smirnoff. Corbin's distraction showed in his Argentine tango set to a number from Cher's movie "Burlesque," but he's a strong enough dancer that even his weaker performances are solid. Though Carrie Ann said it wasn't one of his best nights, he still earned 9s across the board. Total score: 27 out of 30 (plus 3 points from the dance-off)
Leah Remini and Tony Dovolani hoped to tug on Cher's heartstrings with a sweet interpretation of Sonny and Cher's "I Got You Babe." Tony choreographed an elegant Viennese waltz that recreated the day Sonny and Cher met at a coffee shop long ago. It was definitely a risk, but Cher loved the romantic dance and said it was amazing that they could capture their feelings from that day. Carrie Ann and Bruno also liked the dance, but said Leah needed to work on staying in hold. Total score: 25 out of 30 (plus 3 points from the dance-off)
Jack Osbourne, meanwhile, is emerging as the dark horse of the competition. He started off as one of the weaker performers, but as his confidence grows each week, his dancing has become more assertive, too. He told Cheryl this week that when he started the competition, he thought it would be the "cheesiest" experience of his life, but now he is genuinely passionate about dancing. Cheryl seemed thrilled about his new positive outlook, and together they performed one of the best acts of the night, a tango set to Cher's classic "The Beat Goes On." Carrie Ann and Bruno said he was in control and praised his growth throughout the competition, and Cher said he looked like a pimp (which she meant as a compliment!) Total score: 27 out of 30 (plus 3 points from the dance-off)
Bill Engvall and Emma Slater thought they would be sent home last week instead of Snooki, so they worked extra hard this week on the season's first disco. Turns out Bill is a huge Cher fan ("from the beginning!" he told her at the judges' table) so their disco set to "Strong Enough" was right up his alley. Though the judges had to point out his frequent technical struggles, his charm and performance value once again saved the day, and he was safe for another week. Total score: 24 out of 30
Elizabeth Berkley Lauren and Val Chmerkovskiy had a difficult week of rehearsals, especially as Elizabeth asked to change their song to Cher's "Bang Bang" after Val had already choreographed a routine to a different track. Their fiery modified jazz routine was sexy and bold, but Carrie Ann said Elizabeth's anger was one-dimensional, and she would have liked to see more variety of emotion. Cher loved the dance, but we'll never know exactly what she said; her enthusiastic reaction led to one of the longest bleeps in "DWTS" history! Total score: 25 out of 30
Finally, Amber Riley and Derek Hough struggled with injuries this week. Amber revealed during rehearsal that she had gone to the hospital for knee problems, and Derek has ongoing back and neck issues. However, no matter how injured, Amber and Derek always somehow pull off an incredible performance, and this week was no exception. Their sexy tango set to Cher's "Turn Back Time" earned rave reviews from the judges, and Cher said Amber was "owning it" on the dance floor. They also received the highest score of the night, and were thus immune from the dance-off challenge. Total score: 28 out of 30
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"Dancing With the Stars" airs Mondays at 8 p.m. ET/PT on ABC.