Kirstie Alley and Maksim Chmerkovskiy had a bump in the road as the 12th season of Dancing with the Stars continued Monday night, as the hunky Russian suffered a muscle spasm on the ballroom floor and dropped the Cheers star during their rumba.
Despite the gaffe, Maks shook off his injury and the pair regrouped to put on an entertaining number, earning a respectable 21 points for their dance.
Storytelling was the theme of Monday’s show, as each celeb had to tell a story with their dance that related to something from their personal life. Alley’s dance, set to Somewhere Over The Rainbow, was inspired by a time of triumph and tragedy in her life, as she lost her mother in a car accident around the time she’d gotten her big show biz break with a role in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan.
“This song depicts the most turning point in my life,” Alley said. “The song depicts the hopefulness after the despair.”
Following their routine, judge Carrie Ann Inaba told Alley and Chmerkovskiy, “Sometimes tragedy leads to amazingly beautiful moments.
“I think despite the fact you had a mess up at the beginning something magical happened after that and you were so connected to the music,” the recently-engaged judge said. “I think you did a wonderful job!”
Len Goodman commended the duo on their never-say-die approach, telling them, “Dancing is a bit like life: It’s about overcoming adversities, and you did that.”
Chmerkovskiy explained to the judges that the miscue was not Alley’s fault, saying that his thigh “just gave out.”
“Any dancer knows, it has to do with muscle strain,” Chmerkovskiy said. “It had nothing to do with her.”
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Aside from Alley’s fall, the big stories from Monday’s episode were model Petra Nemcova (waltz) and Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Hines Ward (samba), who were the evening’s standouts, tying for the high score with 25 points apiece.
Playboy Playmate-turned-E! star Kendra Wilkinson totaled 23 points for her rumba; Disney star Chelsea Kane received 23 points for her cha cha cha; Ralph Macchio, who recently celebrated his 24th wedding anniversary, tacked on 21 points for his rumba; WWE wrestler-turned-best-selling author Chris Jericho earned 21 points for his rumba; iconic boxer Sugar Ray Leonard received 21 points for his parse double; rapper Romeo earned 20 points for his rumba; and the “Queen Of All Media” Wendy Williams received the evening’s lowest score, with 15 points for her foxtrot.
On Good Morning America Tuesday, Maks tried to downplay the injury, saying it was only a “Charlie Horse.”
Maks also appeared uncomfortable with the attention heaped upon him. Said Maks: “The whole thing about the situation that makes me most uncomfortable is that I want to be… you know my philosophy… is that I just want to be in the background.. you know, the backbone…but I want to be in the shadows and I feel like this being the most talked about moment kind of takes away from Hines (Ward) and from Petra (Nemcova) doing their phenomenal routines and even Kirstie obviously, so that’s why I feel a little awkward..”
Maks even went on Twitter Monday night to apologize to his fans for having a muscle spasm.
Someone’s going home when Dancing with the Stars returns on ABC Tuesday at 9/8c.