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Image: Bristol Palin, Mark Ballas
Adam Larkey  /  ABC
Who would've thought that after last week's mess of a jive that Bristol Palin and pro Mark Ballas could bounce back in such a big way?
TODAY contributor
updated 10/25/2010 11:27:24 PM ET 2010-10-26T03:27:24

“Dancing With the Stars’ ” first ever “Rock Week” brought double dances, faux-hawks and electric guitars to the ballroom. It also brought out the best and the worst in the remaining celebrities — or at least the best in the worst remaining celebrity.

Though it’s hard to call Bristol Palin the worst when she dances her best. It’s all so confusing.

Vote: Rate the dancers (on this page)

After weeks filled with flubbed footwork and one week packed with laughable ape action, Palin knew she was lucky to even have a chance at a week-six dance. The surprising part is that she actually did something about that fact. She put aside her usual half-hearted, half-dazed effort and promised pro partner Mark Ballas she would go “full out.”

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It might seem a shock to unsuspecting dance fans (it sure was to this one), but Palin’s “full out” isn’t so bad. It’s almost good even. Heck, it was enough to beat ballroom’s favorite Baby.

No lie.

Jennifer Grey — aka Baby, aka the presumed winner of this whole show — scored 20 points for a paso doble that showed no signs of her past greatness. Palin? She scored 23 big ones for her true-effort tango.

Video: Are Bristol, 'Dancing' partner dating? (on this page)

Of course, the night wasn’t over. The dance marathon portion of the evening had a chance to restore order to the universe or give Grey the opportunity to beat her new competition. Same thing.

All the stars joined Grey and Palin, along with their respective pros, for that final, faithful, rockin’ dance-off. In a mess of jives, Lindy hops and West Coast swings, the first hoofer kicked to the curb was Kurt Warner. The retired quarterback walked away from his second bad dance of the night with a total of 22 points. Palin was next out in the group dance and in the overall ranking with 28. While Grey held out second to the longest in the jumping jive, she only gained one point on Palin.

Which means despite the shake-ups, none of the aforementioned dancers were this week’s front-runners. Warner, Palin and Grey pull up the rear, while Rick Fox, Kyle Massey and Audrina Patridge ease to the front. But Brandy left them all behind.

Video: Brandy 'waiting for that special someone' (on this page)
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For the second week in a row, the R&B singer showed she has what it takes to top the leaderboard. Now she just has to watch out for this season’s brand new dark horse.

If Palin can go from monkey madness last week to a respectable tango this week, there’s no telling what she’ll do next week. It’s not like she’s going home Tuesday night or anything. She may only be one spot from the bottom, but fans who supported her jive couldn’t possibly abandon her tango.

Ree Hines wonders who we’ll say goodbye to Tuesday night. Kurt or Kyle? Follow @ReeHines on Twitter and share your best ballroom guesses.

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Video: Are Bristol, 'Dancing' partner dating?