SAN DIEGO, May 9, 2016 – When someone is eliminated with the Mirror Ball Trophy in sight, it hurts even worse than being eliminated early in the season. So with just two weeks to go until the finals, fans knew they would be sad when someone’s name was called at the end of the quarterfinals Monday on “Dancing With The Stars.”
For a reason we can’t explain, show producers decided to announce who was safe right from the start of the show. Nyle DiMarco and Peta Murgatroyd were declared safe from elimination at the top, and danced first. If you want to know who else joined them and who left in the quarterfinals, scroll to the end.
Reviews in order of appearance on the show:
Nyle DiMarco said “I want to invite them (the audience) ino my world and show them what it’s like to be deaf.” Nyle and pro Peta Murgatroyd included an sequence in the middle of their Paso Doble without any music. It will go down as one of DWTS’s iconic show moments. Nyle danced with five male pros which also fulfilled his solo requirement this week. It was unexpectedly moving and impressive in the midst of a strong overall Paso performance. The audiences and the judges rewarded the risk with a score of 29 points.
Paige VanZant and Mark Ballas were safely through to next week, but Antonio Brown and Sharna Burgess, and Jodie Sweetin and Keo Motsepe were both told they are in jeopardy of going home.
Antonio and Sharna had to follow with a Viennese Waltz and while the news about being in danger was fresh in their heads. This is unnecessary and distracting; let’s hope the producers don’t do this again next week. Antonio is finally putting the rehearsal time in and showing serious improvement. It was lyrical and a successful effort, good for 27 points.
Jodie Sweetin and Keo Motsepe, the other couple in danger, stepped up as well with their best performance of the season, an energetic gospel themed Jive. “I laid everything out in front of me on that floor, I was so happy, that was so much fun!” They were rewarded with a perfect score of 30 points, their highest score of the season.
Paige VanZant and Mark Ballas are coming off their own perfect score from last week’s Jive. Mark Ballas took a risk with his choreography, pushing the boundaries of a Viennese Waltz by depicting the song “Stone Cold” by Demi Lovato by freezing the routine at times and inserting some static moves. It was effective and creative but with enough Viennese Waltz content to keep the judges happy. It’s not time to play it safe on the show. They were rewarded with 28 points including a ten from Carrie Ann Inaba.
Ginger Zee and Val Chmerkovskiy received the season’s first perfect score of 30 last week and picked up right where they left off with a sizzled Argentine Tango. It was classic from costume to music to approach. It could have been 1816 just as easily as 2016. The approach was successful when Val won the Mirror Ball Trophy with Rumer Willis, and it was just as successful again for a perfect score of 30 points.
Wrapping up the individual dances, Wanya Morris and Lindsay Arnold brought back a song and theme used by Amber Riley and Derek Hough in their winning freestyle routine, a Western saloon setting for “Can You Do This” by Aloe Blacc. There is a lot of risk following an iconic routine done so well first by someone else. There was an accident with Lindsay losing a bandana from her costume and it tripped Wanya, but it didn’t slow him down at all. The judges forgave the slip, but told Wanya he will need to push despite being immensely talented because it looks too easy for him. Their score was 25 points.
But they had a chance to redeem themselves with the Judges’ Challenge team dances, routines put together for pairs of stars and pros with the judges choosing the music, costumes, and production elements.
Team Bruno matched Jodie and Keo with Nyle and Peta for their Argentine Tango routine to the classic “Habenara” from the opera “Carmen.” The routine included choreography pairing the women and then the men partnered in their own sequence. Nyle and Jodie also danced together. It was elegant and stylish with a lot of strength. But it would have fallen apart without perfect timing – no worry there. They scored 29 points, 10 each from Carrie Ann Inaba and Len Goodman, and nine from the audience.
Team Len put together a Samba routine to another classic dance song for Ginger and Val and Wanya and Lindsay. The Samba is a difficult rhythm and style to master, but Ginger and Wanya have the talent and sparkling personalities to handle it. The secret weapon was Len Goodman himself who joined the two couples for a Samba line. They scored 29 points, 10 each from Carrie Ann Inaba and Bruno Tonioli, and nine from the audience.
Team Carrie Ann paired Paige and Mark and Antonio and Sharna, the two athletes still in the competition. She created a powerhouse Paso Doble taking advantage of the power and strength of all four dancers including a magnificent lift by Antonio of Paige. It was by far the best team routine of the evening, but the score was the same of the other two, ten from each judge and nine from America’s vote for 29 points.
Remember back earlier in the show we had couples in jeopardy? The first couple called safe was Antonio and Sharna, a surprising bit of news even to them. It left Jodie and Keo and Wanya and Lindsay at risk of leaving before the semifinals. It turned out to be Jodie Sweetin going home after her best week, which has been a theme all season. She went out on her best week with a perfect score and her head head high. “I found a level of honesty and openness I will walk away with … it’s been an amazing experience and I’m grateful. We went to church!” said Jodie after the show.
If you thought this week’s elimination was rough, just wait until next week. Two couples will be eliminated in the semifinals just one week short. Your votes will be more important than ever, so read below and make your choices.
Week 8 Leaderboard
Jodie Sweetin and Keo Motsepe: Jive, 10-10-10 = 30 plus 29 team = 59 points
Phone: 800-868-3405 ELIMiNATED
Ginger Zee and Val Chmerkovskiy: Argentine Tango, 10-10-10 = 30 plus 29 team = 59 points
Nyle DiMarco and Peta Murgatroyd: Paso Doble, 10-9-10 = 29 plus 29 team = 58 points
Paige VanZant and Mark Ballas: Viennese Waltz, 10-9-9 = 28 plus 29 team = 57 points
Antonio Brown and Sharna Burgess: Viennese Waltz, 9-9-9 = 27 plus 29 team = 56 points
Wanya Morris and Lindsay Arnold: Jive, 8-8-9 = 25 plus 29 team = 54 points
“Dancing With the Stars” returns next Monday, May 16 at 8 p.m. Eastern/Pacific Time on the ABC Television Network.
Voting information: Viewers may cast their votes for their favorite couples via phone on Monday nights during the show and up to one hour after the end of the DWTS broadcast in each time zone. Online voting at www.ABC.com and on Facebook at https://apps.facebook.com/votedwts/ is open for 24 hours, beginning from the start of each episode on the East Coast at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT and closing at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT on Tuesday evenings.
Gayle Lynn Falkenthal, APR, is President/Owner of the Falcon Valley Group in San Diego, California. She is also a serious boxing fan covering the Sweet Science for Communities. Read more Media Migraine in Communities Digital News. Follow Gayle on Facebook and on Twitter @PRProSanDiego. Gayle can be reached via Google +
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