When J.R. Martinez said he would come back strong this week on Dancing With the Stars, he wasn’t kidding. The Salvadorian Army veteran-turned soap opera actor more than kept his promise! He and his partner Karina Smirnoff earned perfect scores last night—twice!
28-year-old Martinez and Smirnoff scored a perfect 10 from all three judges during the show’s first round, and their performance brought the audience to their feet. During that round, the pair performed a waltz to Burch Bacharach’s “What the World Needs Now Is Love.” DWTS judge and choreographer Bruno Tonioli likened Martinez’s waltz performance to a “musical Valentine card.” “You dance with your heart on your sleeve,” Tonioli said. “It was divine.”
As for Martinez’s second performance, he and Smirnoff killed it on the dance floor with an instant jive performance to Little Richard’s “Tutti Frutti.” Tonioli was moved to his feet after the performance. “You were off like a rocket!” he said. “You got it man, you’ve got it!” Breathless, Martinez and Smirnoff were all smiles.
“Now you've got the X-factor and the feel-good factor mixed together, and you come out here with the most fantastic jive,” Len Goodman said. Martinez’s performance last night was a big shift from last week on the show, during which one of the judges, Len Goodman, described his dancing as “substandard.”
Keep up the great work Martinez – we are all rooting for you!
Check out Martinez and Smirnoff’s perfect-scoring jive performance below: