Dancing With the Stars started the evening off with a BIG surprise: The low-scoring but highly endearing team of Tommy Chong and Peta Murgatroyd was announced as a semi-finalist, meaning another duo that scored higher (much higher) would be voted off.
Viewers already have a vote in who stays and who goes on this show, but for this week’s show they got even more involved by making creative choices (dances, outfits) for the six remaining couples. Here’s a look at the dances, how they did, and which routine made Len Goodman say he wished that he had an “11” paddle!
Alfonso Ribeiro and Witney Carson: 37/40 (Fox-Trot)
There’s something enjoyable about watching a young dancer like Witney take on an old school dance like the fox-trot. She and Alfonso brought charm, elegance, and grace to the routine. They’ve been the most consistent pair in terms of great dances. People often say the winner of DWTS should be the one who’s had the best journey. Has that really been Alfonso? Maybe not, but he shouldn’t be penalized for being very good from the start. Carrie Ann Inaba’s criticism that the pair made the dance look “effortless” really bugged me. A lot of effort goes in to making things look effortless.
(Another thing that bugs me is host Erin Andrews regularly interjecting her own experiences from her time as a contestant on the show—Erin, we know you went to the finals in season 10 with Maks Chmerkovskiy? “I wish I could have danced like that,” she told Alfonso and Witney up in the skybox. I get that she’s trying to relate and connect with the people she’s interviewing, but there’s not enough time for that on live TV.
Tommy Chong and Peta Murgatroyd: 29/40 (Viennese Waltz)
The Viennese Waltz is one of the most graceful dances, and over the years many older celebs have done it really well. Peta’s smiled the whole way through because she probably thought, “We’re going to the semi-finals! Woo-hoo!” The dance was okay. It’s clear that Tommy can’t keep up like the other celebs, but it’s also clear that it no longer matters. Kudos to Julianne Hough for giving Tommy points for the moments he got right. I would have predicted Betsey Johnson would have been the sentimental favorite of this season, but instead it’s Tommy—who’s the luckiest guy on the face of the earth because he gets to dance with Peta each week.
NEXT: Artem goes all “Biff Tannen” on Lea