Tonight, not one but two couples will be going home. Is this sad? A little. Is it necessary? Of course! So, let's rip off the Band-Aid, Tom Bergeron, and get on with it. Of course, because this is about five minutes worth of show, there will be performances (Kylie Minogue, Ne-Yo) and there will be clip montages and there will be celebrities under lights, sweating. Oh, and there will also be a dance featuring actual professional dancers. Craziness!


I think I missed Kylie Minogue. I'm sure she was great, though. Next time, I will wrestle with my computer a little earlier. 

Right after the commercial break, though, we get to the delivery of bad news or, possibly, good news. Melissa & Tony are on the block opposite Shawn & Derek. No one wants to go home. Everyone is nervous. What is going to happen? Nothing! They're both safe. Everyone else is very happy about this, or at least pretends to be, since their odds of going home just went through the roof. 

Brooke Burns Charvet asks the other dancers questions. I am not going to disparage Brooke in any way, since she has thyroid cancer and I'm amazed she appears to be putting off surgery long enough for the show to wrap up the season. That's what I call determination. Anyway, all's good with Brooke. She asks Apolo if it sucks to be on the bottom, and guess what? It does. He says Tom can call his name, but he's not leaving. I'm sure he's joking. Kind of. 

The Broadway cast of "Newsies" performs "Seize the Day." It's very good, and I suppose it's nitpicking to point out that the newsboys appear to be news adults. It gives everything sort of a Chippendale's vibe I don't feel comfortable associating with "Newsies," but it's not necessarily a bad thing. 

Ne-Yo sings "Let Me Love You." Hot chicks dance. It's great, it's great, can we move on to the eliminations? 

Kelly & Val and Kirstie & Maks are on the block -- and one of these couples is definitely going home. I swear Kelly looks like she's going to throw up. Kirstie doesn't. She's grinning and smiling and declaring that she feels lucky! Even if she goes home, I'd say Kirstie has been lucky. She made it this far through the support of her fan base, and hey, she's had a great run. 

But, it's over. Kirstie & Maks get the boot. Kirstie's fine with it. She loves dancing! She loves the judges! She loves her fans! Kirstie is absolutely glowing. So, don't cry for Kirstie, people. As the one celebrity who seems to have not only gotten along famously with Maks but actually really enjoyed her time with him, they may have to bring her back if he does another All-Star season. 

We watch a clip segment of the pros stressing out about being eliminated and having to dance weird dances they've never done before. Cheryl has had multiple nervous breakdowns. Maks has had to tell Kirstie he loves her many times a day. Val is just happy to have made it this far. I'm sure the alleged sex helps. 

Tom announces that it's time for the couples to pick dances for their competition. This is not the most successful addition to the show, as there are no dances that seem so egregious they can be "stuck" on another couple to get an edge. Most of the time, the celebrities just blink and squirm, because they have no idea if their rivals struggle with a particular genre or not because they're too busy struggling themselves. I'm sure it seems like a good idea to someone, though.

Tom announces that the dance categories have wacky names that have something to do with the songs attached to them. And medicinal marijuana. Sigh.

Kelly & Val pick for Melissa & Tony. They choose the "Caveman" hustle

Emmitt & Cheryl choose for Shawn & Derek. They dump "Knight Rider" banghra on them.  

Apolo & Karina select for Gilles & Peta. They get "Mad Mink" merengue

Giles & Peta choose for Apolo & Karina. "Big Top" jazz.

Shawn & Derek select "Espionage" linty hop for Emmitt & Cheryl

Kelly & Val get "Surfer" flamenco. 

All of this will be explained next week. It had better be good, "DWTS." Just saying. 

Next we get a performance from Anna, Val and the principal dancers from the New York City Ballet. It's gorgeous. 

Then, we move on to our final three couples -- Apolo & Karina, Gilles & Peta and Emmitt & Cheryl. One of them is going home. 

In the clip montage, there is only one truly great moment -- when Apolo turns to Karina and asks, "Do I look fat?" This is hysterical. And for the record, he doesn't. 

The only other purpose of these montages is to let us listen to what the judges are yelling on the sidelines. They get into this, yo. 

First, the good news. The next couple safe is… Emmitt and Cheryl. Huh. I sort of thought Emmitt & Cheryl might get the boot, even though I can't say any of these three is really deserving of it. It's down to Apolo & Karina and Gilles & Peta. Apolo is dragging his feet, but he goes down the stairs to hear his fate. But don't send him home, Tom. He is NOT GOING. 

Before we hear the last word, Tom turns to the judges. Len truly loves these couples. He thinks Gilles is always one hundred percent full-on. He thinks Apolo has come back stronger and stronger. He doesn't want either of them to go home! No tears, Len. No tears. 

The couple going home is… Gilles & Peta. Aw, that really does suck. Gilles takes the news bravely, as he probably realizes that crying and stomping his feet won't do much for his image. Gilles tried his best and Peta was an angel who taught him many things. But he wants to thank his wife, because without her, he's nothing. 

Are you sorry to see Kirstie and Gilles go? Are you excited about next week's dances? And did you think Apolo looked fat (I didn't say it and I don't think so, but he did)?  

Liane Bonin Starr is an author, screenwriter and former writer for Her byline has appeared in the Los Angeles Times, Variety and a lot of other places. Her last book was called "a scandalously catty, guilty pleasure" by Jane magazine. Expect the same from Starr Raving.