PureDWTS Season 17, Week 7 – Power Rankings

Kind of a strange, low-energy night for me – I feel like everyone, across the board, had kind of a so-so night, and I think it’s due in part to the fact that two dances a week are really starting to wear on some of the couples.  I think I notice it more this season than any other season – some are dealing with injuries, some are dealing with strained partnerships, some are dealing with illnesses, and everyone seems to be feeling the pressure.

I think most of us can agree that it was not Nicole’s time to go home – however, I’m appalled at some of the sources of blame I’m seeing from those who are upset about it, and I place a lot of blame on the shoulders of TPTB for some really sh*tty scoring decisions.  Nicole got a very kind score for her samba – while it wasn’t bad, I certainly don’t think it was 27-worthy, as she seemed to struggle with timing and there was very little hip action.  So you can’t blame scores for her exit…although the judges likely screwed her over by overscoring just about everyone except Bill – it only served to make the margins smaller, which meant that someone below her needed even fewer votes to surpass her.  And this was ON TOP of the big points dump from last week, so the margins were itty bitty.  And sorry, but those of you upset about her going home – you were actually voting for her, right? Cause I’m finding that the biggest complainers about Nicole’s exit were people that didn’t bother to throw a single vote her way all season.  If you didn’t vote, you don’t get to bitch & moan, and you are part of the problem.  Snookole needed VOTES…and she didn’t get them.  Kinda how this show works…this isn’t really a revelation, kids.

And fair warning: I’m going to be prone to bouts of rantining this week, after some of the wanton idiocy and deductive reasoning leaps I witnessed after last night’s elimination.  I’m allergic to stupid, y’know ;-)

1/2.) TIE: Corbin & Karina and Amber & Derek – Just kind of an odd night from both of these couples – I don’t feel like either one was operating at peak performance levels.  I think Corbin & Karina coped as well as they could with a rather odd cha-cha song – seemed like there was a lot of what Len would call “frippery”, though…lotta side-by-side hip-hop sections, but I kinda blame the rhythm changes in the song for that.  Someone on Twitter remarked that Karina seemed stressed – and yes, I have to agree, and wonder if the constant pressure to make their routines better and better is beginning to wear on she & Corbin’s partnership.  Then there was Amber & Derek, who both had injuries to contend with – while I think they handled their paso doble well, I think Derek did kinda take the safe route on it; seemed like it wasn’t as daring or impactful as some of the other paso dobles we’ve seen from him.  Pleasant to watch, yes; super-innovative and exciting? Not really.  Let’s hope they can get back into good physical form so they can tackle more daring stuff. 

3.) Liz & Val – I noticed the height difference between these two more than ever last night, and I think Liz’s odd posture is partially to blame.  She was doing something really funky with her neck, and the end result was a rather stiff, awkward-looking quickstep, where she seemed to move kinda small.  I think Liz is at her best when she’s moving big, throwing all her energy into a dance like she did last week; this week she almost seemed more timid, and I think it just made her quickstep seem rather mundane and sedate.   Thought 27 was a pretty kind score, but on a night where just about everyone except Bill got overscored, I guess it doesn’t really matter much.  I think the judges are gunning hard to ensure Lizzy makes the finale, but I daresay both Corbin & Amber are probably going to dance circles around her.  That is, unless someone else suddenly wiggles their way into the finale…more on that later.

4.) Brant & Peta – Brant did okay-ish on this jive – I think Peta made the mistake of overdancing, so Brant looked a bit sluggish and slow in comparison.  Would have liked his knees to come up a bit higher, and I would have nixed the tearaway skirt that Brant nearly wiped out on towards the end of their dance.  That, kids, is why you don’t do crazy props/crazy costumes requiring removal – they have a tendency to come back and bite you in the ass.  :-) 27? A bit high, but again – just about everyone got overscored last night. I think Brant is getting more votes than he initially was, but I’m still not sure that he’s 100% in-the-clear…especially if the judges continue to overscore a certain other couple.  Could he make the finale? Perhaps.  Do I think he’ll make the finale? Not if the judges have any say in the matter.

5.) Jack & Cheryl – I actually think Jack’s jive was technically better than Brant’s – he seemed to pick his knees up more and kept up with the music better.  I could have done without the long bit with the stairs at the end, but eh – like I said earlier, just about everyone had an off-night last night, and there seemed to be an awful lot of “frippery” that didn’t really get called out (cause it wasn’t by Derek, y’know).  Some were complaining that Carrie Ann gave him a 10 – I honestly don’t give a rat’s ass, because at the end of the day, he still got the same total score as Brant, even though he was technically better.  I’m done splitting hairs over individual scores, because it just drives me crazy after a certain point.  Does it really matter whether someone gets a 9,9,9 or a 10,8,9? It adds up to the same thing, and carries the same weight when it comes to who gets eliminated.  Still  not sure where Jack stands in terms of votes – I think he’s getting a decent number, based on Sharon’s campaigning; but I still feel like he’s fading into the woodwork right now, and that he could find himself in the bottom 2 in the coming weeks.

6.) Leah & Tony – It’s another earmuffs week for the Leah & Tony fans – cause I’m about to spit some truth in your face.  That was a low-energy, kindergarten salsa – there was nothing particularly unique, exciting, difficult, or special about it.  She handled what she was given, sure; but what she was given was about as exciting as watching paint dry.  Once again, she was heavy going into and coming out of the lifts, and seemed to move small & timid in the side-by-side sections.  THIS WAS NOT A 26-WORTHY SALSA.  And once again, Leah cons another celebrifriend into coming to the show to support her – last week it was J-Lo.  This week it was Chelsea Handler.  Who’s next, P-Diddy? If you don’t think TPTB see a reason to keep Leah around after seeing who she brings to the show, you are smoking crack.  Why do you think they make a point to show all of Leah’s famous friends on camera each week? And let said friends announce that they’re there to support Leah? If this overscoring continues – what’s to say that Leah doesn’t bump a better dancer (i.e. Elizabeth) out of the finale? I see Bill taking a lot of blame for Snooki’s exit (*eye roll*), since he’s “sent home two better dancers” (untrue), but none of those naysayers seems to be taking into consideration that Leah has been heavily overscored these past few weeks, despite not being much better than Bill…and I see a lot of you complaining about how unpleasant she is to watch.  Bill hasn’t been overscored – Leah has.  And Bill seems to be more fun to watch than Leah for many of you. Anyone care to reconsider their stance on who should be the next to go? Because like I said last week, I’m over this cranky bitch that “isn’t a dancer”, and her entourage of famous friends.

7.) Bill & Emma – I still love these two, and I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t happy that he gets to stick around another week.  I think he handled the quickstep as best he could – love that they threw in the Elvis theme, although I thought the music felt a little odd for a quickstep, and almost too slow.  But Bill stayed on-time, and didn’t seem to miss any steps.  Could the frame use some work? Sure.  But once again, I enjoyed the dance for the entertainment and joy that it brought me.  I think he got a fair score – but when everyone else is getting overscored, I think they could have stood to give him another point or two.  This is what pisses me off – the judges made it abundantly clear who they wanted to stay and who they wanted to go, and they scored accordingly; yet everyone still wants to blame Bill for Snooki’s exit.  Do you guys realize that Bill & Emma and Nicole & Sasha were not necessarily the real bottom 2? That we can’t state with confidence that, if Snooki just got a few more votes, or Bill got even fewer points, it would be Bill going home? It very well might have been Nicole and someone else (Brant? Jack?) in the bottom 2.  Bill got the votes; Nicole did not.  Not sure how that translates to it being Bill’s fault that Nicole went home.  But hey, complainers – don’t worry, with the way they’ve got next week sent up, Bill is sure to get sent packing, and you can stop losing sleep about “better dancers getting sent home”.  Jeez-ass.

Thoughts on the team dances:

I think this was the first season where I didn’t particularly care for either of the team dances – thought both of the songs were ridiculous, and that kinda set the tone for both dances.  While I agree with most that Team Foxing Awesome had the better, more complex choreography, I’m having a hard time really remembering any hard-hitting, memorable moments…all I can really recall is a bunch of smoke and lasers and silly prancing movements. I actually remember Team Spooky Bom Bom better, because I feel like Bill & Snooki were the MVP’s of that team and really sold the story well.  Sure, their choreography was more simplistic and easy, but I felt like they told more of a story than Foxing Awesome.  Leah was a total non-event – couldn’t even remember one move she did, or what she wore.

So what did you guys think of last night?