DWTS 14 Week 4: Melissa Gilbert ends ‘Conquest’ with a concussion

Last night on “Dancing with the Stars” week 14, two celebrities were on the injured list, but only one had to be rushed to the hospital. Going into Monday night’s Rock Week, Maria Menounos had a stress fracture that made those high heels particularly painful, but it was Melissa Gilbert who was injured on stage, suffering a mild concussion and whiplash.

Gilbert had performed an impassioned paso doble to “Conquest” by The White Stripes. This was one of the few songs of the night that actually fit the dance but not, perhaps, the celebrity dancer. In the rehearsal reel, we saw how demanding Maksim Chmerkovskiy was being, trying to help Gilbert find her inner demonic diva. He wanted her to “get pissed and get annoyed” but not step on his family jewels.

But Gilbert suffers from lack of core control which is most apparent on the dips where she doesn’t keep her back straight and stable. She doesn’t brace herself well for the end of the drop or dip. She also loses her frame so that Maksim actually has to push her harder than is really necessary. I loved her white dress with the split skirt of ruffles. Maksim slipped at the end, but Gilbert’s concussion happened before then.

On the dance, Len Goodman said he liked it, but he was concerned that she’d be a bit unsure and unsteady. He’d like to see her in more lycical dances because up to this point, she had quick (jive for week 3, quickstep for week 2 and cha cha cha for week 1) and hectic. She hasn’t had a chance to show her graceful, lady-like side.

Bruno Tonioli commented that he loved the “flavor of Spain” but noted that besides messing up the ending, Gilbert tended to do better at the slower parts.

Carrie Ann Inaba commented that it was Gilbert’s best dance to date, but that Inaba didn’t feel Gilbert felt as an equal in hold. In my opinion, she looks like a ragdoll. The leader needs  a certain amount of resistance and that depends upon the dance. With enough resistance, it is less work for the leader and the follower, Gilbert can “read” the leader’s signals. Now it looks like Maksim is “shouting” instead of suggesting.

Of course, Gilbert had surgery to replace a disc on her lower spine in mid-2010. That fusion is bound to make her stiffer there, but also weaker. Strengthening that part of her body would help her posture, but it might be more learning the control over actual weakness due to surgery.

LEADER BOARD

Donald Driver and Peta Murgatroyd: 27 (9, 9, 9)
Maria Menounos and Derek Hough: 26 (9, 8, 9)
Roshon Fegan and Chelsie Hightower: 26 (9, 8, 9)
Katherine Jenkins and Mark Ballas: 24 (8, 8, 8)
Gavin Degraw and Karina Smirnoff: 23 (8, 8, 7)
William Levy and Cheryl Burke: 22 (7, 7, 8)
Jaleel White and Kym Johnson: 22 (8, 7, 7)
Melissa Gilbert and Maksim Chmerkovskiy: 22 (7, 8, 7)
Sherri Shepherd and Val Chmerkovskiy: 21 (7, 7, 7)
Gladys Knight and Tristan McManus: 20 (7, 6, 7)

STANDINGS BY INDIVIDUAL DANCE
Jive
  • William Levy and Cheryl Burke: 22 (7, 7, 8)
Levy and Burke had the fourth highest score for jive, tied with Jaleel White and his partner Kym Johnson.
Paso Doble
  • Donald Driver and Peta Murgatroyd: 27 (9, 9, 9)
  • Katherine Jenkins and Mark Ballas: 24 (8, 8, 8)
  • Melissa Gilbert and Maksim Chmerkovskiy: 22 (7, 8, 7)
Tango
  • Maria Menounos and Derek Hough: 26 (9, 8, 9)
  • Gavin DeGraw and Karina Smirnoff: 23 (8, 8, 7)
  • Jaleel White and Kym Johnson: 22 (8, 7, 7)
  • Sherri Shepherd and Val Chmerkovskiy: 21 (7, 7, 7)
  • Gladys Knight and Tristan McManus: 20 (7, 6, 7)
Viennese Waltz
  • Roshon Fegan and Chelsie Hightower: 26 (9, 8, 9)

Week 3

Week 2

Week 1

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About Jana J. Monji

I've written for the Rafu Shimpo, LA Weekly, LA Times and, more recently, the Pasadena Weekly. I formerly worked for a dot-com more interested in yodeling than its customers.

Posted on April 10, 2012, in Dancing with the Stars Season 14, Melissa Gilbert, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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