TIDBITS & FIT-BYTES: Mary’s DWTS Season #23 Week 5 Analysis

Mary VanDeVelde enjoys some ribs at the Allstate Hometown Voices at the Browntrout. (Kristin Decker/WGN Radio)

Mary VanDeVelde enjoys some ribs at the Allstate Hometown Voices at the Browntrout. (Kristin Decker/WGN Radio)

TIDBITS & FIT-BYTES: Mary’s DWTS Season #23 Week 5 Analysis

Bring on the Kleenex!! It’s “Most Memorable Year” week and that means stars rehash a happy or traumatic year and do emotional, heart-felt dances. You knew the tears were going to flow when the first song the pros dance to is “My Heart Will Go On” from “The Titanic”…yikes….bring on the pan flute.

The majority of the stars pick the year one of their children came into the world or the year they overcame a substance abuse situation. There were actually a few unique stories (thanks Jana and James!). Also , a slight surprise announcement at the end, but DON’T head to the last page just yet because everyone needs a good cry.

By the way, Judge Len Goodman was still on sabbatical, so scores were kind of high!

1.) Town crier MAUREEN MCCORMICK – I thought she’d go with her cocaine years, but she picks 1985, the year she married her husband. I think her partner Artem cried more than she did this time. Marcia wore a wedding dress costume and danced the foxtrot beautifully. “Slow and steady wins the race” says one of the judges.
24 pts.

2.) CALVIN JOHNSON JR. – goes with the year he broke Jerry Rice’s receiving record and guess who shows up during the dance – Jerry himself and the two have never met before!! (hard to believe). Calvin is turning into my favorite…he did a Motown jazz number and should’ve scored higher on this one. I don’t even notice his size 15 feet anymore!
24 pts.

3.) JANA KRAMER – goes with 2016, the year she had her baby, but spent more time telling an emotional story about her ex-husband being jailed for almost killing her (read the recent People Magazine article). She did a beautiful contemporary dance….good thing her false eyelashes are waterproof!
26 pts.

4.) RYAN LOCHTE – another shoe-less, almost shirtless contemporary number remembering 2008, the year he won his first gold medal. Cheryl did great choreography to get him to express himself. He hugs his mom, his biggest fan, afterward. He stays afloat…for now.
24 pts.

5.) LAURIE HERNANDEZ – for the first time, I think the favorite falls off the high-level dancing bar she’s set for herself. It’s hard to believe a 16-year-old can have a memorable year, but she’s had quite a few and chooses the year of her dislocated knee. Julianne says her skirt is too heavy and weighed her down during the paso-doble. I thought she was fierce as usual.
25 pts.

7.) MARILU HENNER – dedicated her waltz to her mother, who died in 1978, the year she booked “Taxi” . Hugs all around, even Bruno hugged Derek. Marilu finally loosened up and danced at ease with no annoying responses. Deserving of a high score.
27 pts.

8.) AMBER ROSE – another one dancing to the year her kid was born. Didn’t get it though since she samba’d with a girl group and then just strutted around in a metallic peacock outfit. Julianne loved the content, but said she danced better with the girls than with Maks. You can tell by now, I’m not her biggest fan and her scores were too high.
24 pts.

9.) JAMES HINCHCLIFFE – most memorable story of the night since he almost died just 18 months ago after a terrible race car crash. It was a little odd though when they brought in his life-saving doctor to comment. Best line – James told his mother when he woke up from his trauma “I should’ve been an accountant”. Oh, the dance….best of the night…great technical tango, especially with a hole in his side from the crash.
29 pts.

10.) TERRA JOLE – yet another shoe-less contemporary and boy, are her poor feet taped up. She dedicated her emotional dance to her father who passed away before she could dance with him at her wedding. It made me feel a little uncomfortable when Sasha was twirling her around above his head. I kept thinking, please don’t let go!! She’s starting to take over the crying from Maureen.
27 pts.

More tears flow when Tom Bergeron lines up the 9 dancers and tells them the big news – NO ELIMINATION THIS WEEK!

Now, my tears are flowing…..good thing I had the box of Kleenex vs. the travel pack.