In what might be the strangest semifinal week in “Dancing With the Stars” history, the five remaining All-Stars were tasked with performing both an “offbeat” routine and a tribute to Michael Jackson‘s “Bad.”
Kelly Monaco and her pro partner, Val Chmerkovskiy provided two of the night’s most memorable moments: a passionate kiss at the end of their rumba and Val stripping down to a Speedo and splashing in the water for their “surfer flamenco” routine.
Unfortunately, the pair were not rewarded by the judges, who gave them the night’s lowest score (25.5) for their offbeat entry.
When we caught up with Kelly and Val backstage after the show, our first question was about that kiss –which will undoubtedly fuel more rumors of a show-mance between the sultry couple. Was it spontaneous?
“No, it was planned,” Kelly told us. “It was part of the choreography.” When a reporter jokingly asked how long they rehearsed the kiss, Val deadpanned, “Endless hours.”
Whose idea was it to put Val in a Speedo? “Mine,” said Kelly.
And Val just said OK?
“Yeah, of course,” said the man with the six-pack abs.
When told that pro opponent Karina Smirnoff had wondered whether he supplemented his Speedo with any “enhancements,” Val retorted: “Karina has seen everything already — she knows I don’t need any enhancements.”
Their lighthearted banter took a serious turn when asked about the judging.
“I’m very happy and I’m cool with the judges and I think they got a very difficult job to do, but I think they need a little more consistency in their word,” protested Val. “Their word … has a lot of power to it, and should come with a great sense of responsibility. And I think they’re very irresponsible this year.
“Some of their comments and their inconsistent scoring and inconsistent comparing … I just feel sometimes we’re in a different competition and everybody’s in a competition of their own.
“And that’s cool too, but again when it comes down to it and there’s only five couples left, I feel like things should be a little more relative to one another, and they’re not.
“We’re being crucified for things that others are embraced and complimented on — and vice versa, you know. That’s frustrating because we’ve invested a lot of time in mechanics, and none of that was appreciated at all.”
In fact, Kelly and Val say they owe their fans for the fact that they’re still dancing.
“Our fans are incredible,” raves Val, marveling at “the love and response we’ve gotten.”
“[The fans] are everything!” adds Kelly. “If you add it up, we’ve probably been the lowest-scoring couple and we haven’t been in jeopardy. We haven’t scored a 10 yet and we’re still in the competition.”
But another two couples are going home on Tuesday night’s double elimination. Do you think Val and Kelly deserve to stay? Do you believe the judges have been fair this season?
The “Dancing With the Stars: All-Stars” results show airs Tuesday night at 8 p.m. on ABC.