SAN DIEGO, March 23, 2015 – Whichever couple wins season 20 of “Dancing With The Stars” will have to work very hard to earn the special gold Mirror Ball Trophy. The level of competition is as tough as it’s ever been in any season.
The week saw the first nines from the judges. In past seasons with the somewhat inflated scores, we might have already seen tens. The performances are just that good.
We had the first ever Argentine tango and first rumba ever performed this early in a season for week 2. Willow Shields and Mark Ballas, and Nastia Liukin and Derek Hough rose to the challenge and showed just how fierce these stars fight to win.
With just one exception, every single couple improved on their scores from week 1. Despite all the improvement and wonderful moments, someone still had to go home first. If you’d like to know who it was, scroll to the end of the column.
The same couples remained at the top, but this week Nastia and Derek swapped places with Rumer and Val, taking first by just one point with one of the best rumbas ever performed on the show. It was beautifully fluid and exciting to watch. Judges Carrie Ann Inaba and Bruno Tonioli gave out the first nines of the season. Rumer and Val’s cha-cha had bite to it, veering closer at times to a paso doble than a cha-cha with attack and speed. Rumer is the real deal.
Willow and Mark along with Riker Lynch and Allison Holker tied for second with Rumer and Val. Mark Ballas pulled off creative choreography, and Willow managed to pull off a strong Argentine tango despite being 14 years old. Riker and Allison shifted gears from the Jive last week to a dazzling elegant foxtrot this week. Riker has surprisingly good posture and arms. He won’t be going home any time soon.
One point back in third, Redfoo and Emma Slater made the biggest improvement in their scores with an entertaining jive. Redfoo remembered all his choreography this week, but his 31 points seemed a little generous.
Four couples tied with 28 points right in the middle of the pack. No one is having more fun on the show than Robert Herjavec. He and Kym Johnson didn’t respond to rumors of a romance, but their foxtrot set to Michael Buble had the effervescence of the real thing. Michael Sam and Peta Murgatroyd took a very different approach to their foxtrot with a Motown-inspired routine.
The divas of the dance floor have fans trying to figure out how to bottle their energy and sass for themselves. Suzanne Somers, 68, and Patti LaBelle, 70, are giving no ground to the kiddies. Suzanne and Tony Dovoloni did an admirable jive with bounce and good rhythm. Patti and Artem Chigvintsev brought the house down with their “Empire” inspired salsa set to 50 Cent’s “In Da Club.”
One of Noah Galloway’s fans asked him on Twitter, “Are we going to cry every week watching you on the show?” He answered, “Looks like it.” He drew the samba and showed that he could still manage the rhythm and bounce even without a knee joint thanks to his athleticism and musicality with partner Sharna Burgess. He told the audience he was dancing for his fiancee, Jamie Ruth Boyd, who was just days away from graduating from U.S. Army boot camp. At the end of the dance, Jamie came out to surprise Noah. Cue the Kleenex. The dance scored 27 points, but it didn’t even matter.
Fans of the show’s newest pro, Keo Motsepe, were sad to see him leave first in his first season and held their breath it might happen a second time due to being tied for last on the leaderboard. Not this week — Charlotte and Keo redeemed themselves with a much better cha-cha set to Katy Perry’s “California Gurls.”
Perhaps it was the luck of the lobsters. Fans saved Charlotte McKinney and Keo and they’ll get to dance again next week.
At the bottom of the leaderboard this week was the only couple whose score dropped, Chris Soules and Witney Carson. Their cha-cha was rough, scoring only 21 points. But they managed to survive being eliminated. They may not be so lucky next week.
It left Suzanne Somers and Tony Dovoloni, and Redfoo and Emma Slater waiting to hear their fate. But was there really any doubt at that point?
Although he made major improvements, his fate was sealed in week 1 with a low score when fans didn’t turn out in large enough numbers to vote him through. Redfoo and Emma Slater said goodbye to the ballroom. Always positive, Redfoo said he enjoyed his time on the show.
A reminder, no Tuesday results shows until later in the season. Voters get 24 hours to cast their votes.
“Dancing with the Stars” returns with a fan favorite, Latin Week, Monday at 8 p.m. Eastern/Pacific Time on the ABC.
Week 2 Scores
Nastia Liukin and Derek Hough: 9-8-8-9 = 34 points
Rumer Willis and Val Chmerkovskiy: 8-8-8-8 = 32 points
Riker Lynch and Allison Holker: 8-8-8-8 = 32 points
Willow Shields and Mark Ballas: 8-8-8-8 = 32 points
Redfoo and Emma Slater: 8-7-8-8 = 31 points
ELIMINATED FROM THE COMPETITION
Michael Sam and Peta Murgatroyd: 7-7-7-7 = 28 points
Robert Herjavec and Kym Johnson: 7-7-7-7 = 28 points
Suzanne Somers and Tony Dovoloni: 7-7-7-7 = 28 points
Patti LaBelle and Artem Chigvintsev: 7-7-7-7 = 28 points
Noah Galloway and Sharna Burgess: 7-6-7-7 = 27 points
Charlotte McKinney and Keo Motsepe: 7-6-7-6 = 26 points
Chris Soules and Witney Carson: 5-6-5-5 – 21 points
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 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. 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 +
Please credit “Gayle Falkenthal for Communities Digital News” when quoting from or linking to this story. Copyright © 2015 by Falcon Valley Group