Bruno called it a night of miracles in the ballroom during this week's 'Dancing With the Stars' -- and I have to agree. It was the last dance-off before the semi-finals, and everyone brought their A-game. But no one brought it quite like J.R. Martinez.
The Iraq War veteran not only scored the first perfect score of the season for his dreamy waltz -- but then he did it again with his high-energy jive. That's a perfect score of 60 for J.R., who had a lot to prove after he came in fourth place last week.
This week J.R. was on a mission to dance a perfect waltz, and he most certainly succeeded. The pair got a standing ovation -- before their dance was even finished. J.R. and Karina were absolutely lovely together and their waltz was both romantic and mesmerizing, so it seems pretty fitting that the pair would receive that first perfect score of the season.
Despite J.R.'s goofey moves in rehearsals, his lines were clean, his toes were pointed and he even managed to pull off some pretty impressive lifts. From week one, I knew J.R. was going to be the one to beat, and I couldn't help the sense of pride I felt for him on the dance floor -- and I'll admit it, I felt a tiny bit of happiness when Ricki didn't get the first perfect score.
But just when I thought J.R. couldn't get any better, then came the instant jive, and it was clear J.R. wanted redemption after his last jive in week two failed to impress the judges. J.R. and Karina's instant jive was so on point that it looked like anything but instant, earning J.R. his second perfect score of the night.
At this point I was excessively clapping at my television screen -- but I'm sure I wasn't alone, right?
I can't think of a more deserving star than J.R. to receive the season's first perfect score. Week after week, he comes in with the right attitude and dedication, and he's an absolute pleasure to watch. But what I love most about J.R.? He never beats himself up or gets down on himself for not doing as well as he could have.
Ricki, Hope, Rob and Nancy could definitely learn a lesson or two from this soldier. Ricki Lake seemed to get a bit emotional tonight after "letting everyone down" with her instant jive, which the judges thought was a little messy. But it wasn't Ricki's moves that were messy, it was her attitude.
Out of all of the contestants, Ricki seems like the only one that isn't doing this because she has to but because she wants to. She seems to really enjoy dancing, which is so refreshing to see, but there's no need to cry about not getting a 10. I thought she was a being a bit melodramatic by tearing up. Cue the sympathy votes.
Even though her instant jive was a little messy, and had a bit too much razzamatazz for my tastes, her waltz was lovely. She manages to keep her shoulders down, and her line was flawless. She did, however, mess up her footwork, which caused Len to vow that he would never give her a 10 unless she cleaned up her footwork.
Rob Kardashian also impressed the judges with his quickstep. He's definitely improving, and I have to say, his quickstep was probably his best performance to date. But the best part of Rob's dance? When Tom Bergeron told him: "And you've having the best week of any Kardashian." Oh Tom, I love you. With his sister Kim Kardashian filing for divorce and his mom Kris Jenner calling out "Indian givers" on live television, Rob really is having the best week out of all of the Kardashians.
Rob's instant jive was more stomp heavy then smooth, but it was still a solid effort from the reality star and his partner Cheryl -- who looks like a long-lost Kardashian, right?!
However, the award for most improved goes to Hope Solo ... and Maks. After weeks of bickering, Maks decided to go easy on Hope during rehearsals after apologizing for being "too rough" with her last week. And what do you know? Maks is kind of a softy! And his more gentle approach this week pulled off because Hope and Maks were on fire this week.
Their quickstep was fun and flirty, but it was their instant jive that really made me feel like Hope is a serious contender for the Mirror Ball trophy. Her lightening fast footwork was so impressive that in nearly gave Len a heart attack! After having a few less-than-stellar weeks, it was nice to see Hope strive and not crumble under the pressure.
And then there was Nancy Grace. Oh, Nancy, it's really time to go. Here tango wasn't bad, but her instant jive was awful. Not even her fancy cartwheel -- or her begging! -- at the end could save her from the judges' wrath.
I just have one question: Can we please just keep Tristan?!
Tune into the results show Tuesdays at 9PM ET on ABC.