Throughout this season of "Dancing With the Stars: All Stars" West Des Moines native Shawn Johnson and her pro dance partner have followed this mantra: "Go big or go home."
They've run afoul of the judges' preferences at times, but survived to compete Monday in the semifinals. Tonight the couples were ready to deliver two dances. One was a combo dance picked by another pair, the second dance had to be to a Michael Jackson tune from the album "Bad."
First Dance of the Night
Johnson and partner Derek Hough took the floor first to a "Knight Rider" Bhangra. So the dance was a mashup of the '80s TV show with the wildly popular dance of India.
As they began preparations the pair struggled with how to meld the two dance styles. An expert in Bhangra dance explained it as a style popular at Indian weddings, something fathers and uncles would do, with lots of arm movements.
Although Johnson said in the taped segment from rehearsal that they "were so far from getting it," she was in sync with Hough as they showed off their Bollywood moves and had the crowd cheering. The music was a mix of the "Knight Rider" theme song with Indian instruments playing, all while Johnson sported a gold bangle bikini top and skirt of veils.
Judge Bruno Tonioli gave her a huge hug. His score was the first of three 10s, a perfect score.
"Finally Shawn is out of breath," laughed judge Carrie Ann Inaba. "Fantastic, great job." She rewarded Johnson with another 10.
Head Judge Len Goodman said: "Shut up, close the door ... Miss Dynamite was fantastic," which drew huge cheers.
Last week, Goodman gave Johnson's samba a thumbs down and warned his low score wasn't to blame if she was sent packing. But fans pulled her through.
See: The Next Shawn Johnson?
The couple's second dance tonight was the Argentine tango to "Bad." Johnson's footwork was crisp in the intricate dance, complemented by a barely-there midnight blue gown with only strips of fabric on one side.
Her final series of spins/lift mimicked an ice skater's spiral and ended in a deep lunge to the floor.
"You went for shapes, lines, styles ... it was breathtaking," Tonioli said. "Is there anything you can't do?"
Inaba said the dance "lacked the passion" of a tango and the touch. That drew Toniolo out of his chair to object and boos from the audience.
Goodman said they nailed both parts of the routine: they learned the steps and sold it.
The scores from the judges on the tango: a 9 from Inaba and 10s from Tonioli and Goodman.
"I was kind of pacing backstage and shaking and freaking out," Johnson said afterwards.
So Johnson -- who won the glitter ball trophy in Season 8 -- will find out Tuesday night if she competes on Nov. 26 in the championship.
The 20-year-old gymnast claimed the title in 2009. She joined the All Stars version of DWTS after having to retire from gymnastics because of a knee injury.
Two celebrities exited the show last Tuesday -- actress and former "Cheers" star Kirstie Alley, and actor and heartthrob Gilles Marini. You can watch DWTS on WOI-TV channel 5 locally.
Earlier DWTS Season 15 Coverage on Patch:
'Dancing With the Stars' Results: Any Missteps for Shawn Johnson on Salute to Veterans Night?
Dancing with the Stars Results: Did West Des Moines Native Shawn Johnson Survive?
Dancing With the Stars Results: Did Shawn Johnson Get the Boot on Country Night?
Dancing With the Stars Results: Shawn Johnson Has Judges Squabbling
Did Shawn Johnson Survive to Dance Another Week?
Dancing with the Stars Results: Shawn Johnson Scores Three Perfect 10s
Dancing with the Stars Results: Shawn Johnson Gets 'Best Dance Ever' Raves from Judges