It's the Dancing With the Stars semifinals, so it's expected that everyone is going to have pretty good numbers. But taking things to a whole other level on Monday was Janel Parrish and Val Chmerkovskiy whose first dance landed a perfect score, their third of the season. Most of the couples pulled a mixture of nines and 10s. But there was no question that Janelskiy's dramatic Paso Doble deserved 10s across the board.
"I wanted more!" Carrie Ann Inaba shouted at the end of their dance, which is exactly how I felt. It was so good and it ended far too quickly. "I felt like you guys were [dancing as] one," said notoriously tough judge Julianne Hough. "You're in it to win it."
Somewhere along the way Janel emerged as the leader of the competition and it's awesome to see. She's no longer a middle of the pack performer alongside Bethany Mota and Sadie Robertson. She's the one topping all the scores. Janel credits this to her great coach Val Chmerkovskiy. "I think each week I've felt more motivated to do better ... and we're in it to win it."
They certainly are, and it helps that the pair got a visit this week from last year's winner, Maks Chmerkovskiy. He instructed the couple to simply "give the people what they want to see." I was hopeful that would mean another kiss, but alas, their dramatic dance didn't call for one for this time.
But kiss or no kiss, Janel and Val were phenomenal out there and not just because their chemistry can be seen from space. They're just very good dancers, and I think they'll be the winners in the end.
Image: Craig Sjodin/ABC