Tonight was the finale of DWTS Season 18 What did you think of the finale?
Tonight was the finale of DWTS Season 18 What did you think of the finale?
Repeat of rules from last night/last week: Once again, due to heavy traffic, we have to institute a few ground rules for tonight show. Most of these are good rules ALL OF THE TIME, and are basic netiquette.
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So, if you’re in rehab from the drinking during last night’s show, raise your hand. 😀 Read more..
Sorry…I just thought the above picture was gorgeous.
Note: As of 1 pm Eastern time, James was KILLING it in the encore votes with nearly double the tweets of Meryl. Amy was in third with Candace in last place. I suspect that, in the interest of keeping this the “Meryl and Maks show” that James won’t be the one redoing his freestyle. @DWTSGossip also says that it’s open to the “remaining couples” – when the “remaining” is counted, I don’t know. I do know that I would rather see James over Meryl, but I won’t hold my breath.
Well, I called it after Candace’s freestyle – massive underscore because she was going through to Tuesday and they have to make sure she doesn’t actually win. And when you see the math you will see they gave it the ole college try.
Of course there is another dance tomorrow night. It can go one of two ways between Meryl and Amy. They will give them both either 27’s or 30’s and let the audience decide. They might even put Amy a point ahead to tie the score. I expect they might even put Candace up there too, because they’ve created such a margin already it may not matter. If they are really afraid Meryl might not win, I would expect them to underscore Amy relative to Meryl UNLESS Amy just kills it and they can’t underscore without being obvious. Kinda like Len did tonight. :::rolls eyes:::
Anyway, here’s where we stand after two dances.
Totally not surprised that they pretty much ranked them, and really Meryl and Maks fans shouldn’t get too comfortable – Zendaya was ahead by a point too. 😉
As you can see from the table above, going into voting Candace needs a TON of votes just to get past Amy. This bums me out because if Amy isn’t going to win, I don’t want her standing there when Maks and his family create some outrageous display leaving Meryl in the dust. Of course, now that I think about it, I really don’t want Candace and Mark standing there either, with her kids watching. Prove me wrong, Fam – show some class.
Right now, for Candace to WIN, she needs both of the following:
- Candace needs 47,100 more votes per million votes cast than Amy, AND;
- Candace needs 53,000 more votes per million votes cast than Meryl.
This is not unheard of, although that’s close to the record. Bigger margins have been beaten…just never in the finale. It’s unlikely to happen now.
As for Amy, what does she need to do to win? Both of the following:
- Amy needs for Candace to NOT get the 47,100 more votes per million votes cast than her, AND;
- Amy needs 5,900 more votes per million votes cast than Meryl.
As I said earlier, this is totally doable. Will it happen? I’m thinking probably not, mainly due to the tongue baths Meryl has gotten all season, in addition to a pretty massive fanbase, especially compared to Amy. Meryl is a gold medal winning ICE DANCER fresh off the most recent Olympics. Amy is a snowboarder and they barely show her version of the Olympics on TV. Then there is the whole showmance angle – believe it or not some people actually fall for that crap. Later this summer when Maks is photographed with JLo all over the place there are going to be a whole lot of disillusioned fangirls crying in their Diet Pepsi and cursing Maks.
Now, what happens when they add another set of points tomorrow? Well, odds are, nothing changes too much. I’m going to take a stab at it – but I swear the judges read this blog (just like Conrad does) and do the opposite of what I guess. I would bet, since they took great pains to underscore Candace that that trend will continue. Here’s my first scenario:
And scores like those above lead to the following:
As you can see, the margins decreased only slightly. Candace still has a lot of ground to make up. Amy has a bit less. But if they REALLY want Meryl to win and are afraid of Amy, they could rank them more significantly tomorrow. If Amy has even the tiniest mistake and Meryl doesn’t, we could see something like this:
Which would lead to the following:
This scenario puts Meryl way out in front and, considering that when I was voting I kept getting a Meryl and Maks video, I don’t find it to be too unlikely. It’s kinda ridiculous. I don’t think the producers care who wins, as much as they have preferences as to who will make the finale for a variety of reasons. The judges on the other hand, may have an interest in the “best dancer” winning. BUT at the same time, they don’t want to be seen as assholes or as people who are tilting it one way or the other at this stage of the game. IF Amy and Meryl perform comparable dances like they did last night, I expect scenario one to be pretty likely. Like I said, they may even give Candace a 27. Most seasons, as I recall (and I really have to research it) they hesitate to take the decision out of the voter’s hands completely. I think that trend will continue.
At the end of the day, I expect that Maks will finally get his desperately desired and coveted MBT, but casual viewers years from now will remember when Derek Hough took that Amy Purdy gurl to the finale and she danced beautifully despite some disability which they can’t quite remember – because she was just that good. And Candace’s kids will remember when their mom made the finale of Dancing with the Stars and how she was tough as nails and danced under extreme pressure. Derek gets nominated for another Emmy and Mark has great success at his music. Everybody wins.
Well, that’s that, I guess – just go ahead and give
Maks Meryl her MBT and let’s be done with this. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a finale tip its hand as much as it did last night – it was made quite clear who they wanted to keep far away from the MBT (Candace), who they wanted to make the final two (Amy & Meryl), and who they ultimately want/need to win (Meryl & Maks…duh). I was rather disgusted that everyone (including Erin & the judges) seemed to jump on the ridiculous Meryl & Maks showmance bandwagon, but then again, I’m not at all surprised – I will forever remember season 18 as the season that DWTS decided to adopt the “tabloid sleaze” angle. It won’t be a pleasant memory.
And I know it’s not just me, as a jaded DWTS viewer/blogger, that was put off by last night’s show – the bf actually had a rare day off yesterday, after being tied up with a competition over the weekend, and he came over for dinner and decided to stay & watch the show. Those of you who follow me on Twitter got to hear some of his gems while watching the show last night – but for those who didn’t, I think this quote best sums up his feelings about the whole thing: “This is such a waste of my life right now.” He was appalled at the judging (“When did this bimbo ever do ballroom in her life???”), appalled at the teaching (he was especially taken aback by Mark forcefully moving Candace’s head during rehearsal – and he’s even friendly with Mark!), appalled at the choreography (“Why the hell is Maks doing contemporary? He’s a ballroom dancer!”), and was oddly disturbed by the fact that none of the pros seem to wear the proper footwear to teach in (“They could seriously hurt themselves…Argentine tango is not meant to be done in Nikes.”) He did seem rather impressed with one thing, though: how good Amy is, despite her disability. He didn’t even realize she was missing the entire lower portion of her leg until I explained her story – and then he was just floored.
Can’t say I’m terribly surprised that James just couldn’t make his way past Candace last night – I think he unfortunately had a bit of an unmemorable week last week, and Candace does seem to have some fervent fan support. Was left feeling rather puzzled by both of his dances last night – his tango felt a little bit chaotic & desperate (hello, kiss – guess everyone was trying to make a ploy for showmance votes last night), and his freestyle just felt…aimless. Guess we now know how Peta does with freestyles when she doesn’t have any outward assistance from other pros.
Gonna do things in reverse tonight – start with 3rd place and work up to the winner…
3rd place: Candace & Mark
I think the judges all but ensured that Candace will wind up in 3rd when the chips are down tonight – while I agree with most that she’s the weakest dancer left, I don’t think she’s as bad as some of the scores she was given last night. I guess I agree with her quickstep score – there still seemed to be a few frame and body contact issues, but really, it’s the finale – would it have killed them to give her just one 10? Or is she pulling in THAT many votes that they’re afraid she might overtake Amy or Darling Meryl? I just get the impression that Candace has been one variable that TPTB hadn’t planned on this season – she seems to have a lot more support than they thought she would, and that has led to some serious hosing over the weeks. As for her freestyle – I don’t think it was nearly as bad as being 8-worthy across the board. 9-worthy, maybe. I thought she connected well to the music and gave it a good effort – seemed like she was having fun out there. Sure, maybe she was a little clunky coming out of some of the lifts, but it didn’t detract from the performance THAT much. In the end, I’m left feeling a little torn on Candace: I feel bad for her, with some of the unnecessary hosing she’s gotten this season; but in the same token, I think she’s lucky to have gotten as far as she has, and should feel proud to be a finalist. I think she’s had great journey this season
Runner-up: Amy & Derek
If they gave the MBT to whoever overcame the greatest odds in order to end up in the finale, Amy & Derek would be a shoo-in, for sure. But unfortunately, there seems to be a different agenda at play this season, so I think the best these two can end up with is second place. Loved both of their routines last night – thought their salsa was a nice step-up from the one she did with Mark, and had plenty of content; and Derek STILL reigns supreme in the freestyle – I think the edge Derek has is that he’s better able to tell a story than some others with his choreography; I understood the theme and plot he was trying to convey with that routine, and he managed to still do some pretty awesome lifts and creative stuff in it. Thought the rope was genius at the end – kinda symbolized for me the journey Amy has taken on the show, and her ability to handle things that no one would ever guess she’s capable of. Of course the naysayers will claim there wasn’t enough content – what they fail to realize is that, just because she wasn’t necessarily on her feet for every single step, does not mean there “wasn’t content”; hell, I think doing that rope spin was far more difficult than any pirouette or pique Derek could have had her do on the ground. But whatever – these two have already won this season for me, and I daresay Amy has a bright future ahead
The winner: Meryl & Maks
Since the focus of this partnership all season long seems to be Maks (with Meryl as an accessory), I’ll respond in kind and make this critique about him, since I don’t think Meryl is the problem (other than the fact that she herself seems to have bought into the hype of “Maks has never won, Maks deserves to win” and is falling into step with it instead of actually standing up for herself). Meryl is going to dance whatever she’s given FLAWLESSLY. The problem is (and has been all season), that what Maks has given her has not been all that impressive. And I stand by that statement tonight, because even the redo Argentine tango he gave her (which I guess is his favorite dance) paled in comparison choreographically to what his lil bro gave her over a month ago for me. And here’s why: Maks seems to have a lot of “moments”, but isn’t quite adept at stringing them altogether to make a coherent routine. Val, on the other hand, seems to see the whole picture: he understands that a dance, like a story, needs a beginning, middle, and end, plus some fluid transitions to make it all flow together seamlessly. Plus, Val did his thing with a far more difficult song, and with a partner that he had only worked with for a few days. And then there’s the freestyle: looks like Maks’ idea of being “creative” and doing something “never before seen on DWTS” involves creating a derivative, watered-down version of a winning freestyle from a year ago and acting as if it’s something brand-new and ground-breaking. I actually don’t even think this was choreographically as strong as their rumba from a few weeks ago – and that was barely a rumba. I think if he really wanted to showcase Meryl’s abilities, he would have shunned the ooey-gooey showmance-promoting route and choreographed something more upbeat and full of both lifts and energetic dance steps. Show us how versatile she really is, instead of rehashing what we’ve already seen from her. And for Pete’s sake, do something that actually seems to illustrate her journey on DWTS. Hell, at the beginning of the season, I had envisioned some wild, celebratory freestyle to “Gypsy” by Lady Gaga (which would have even appealed to the shippers on some level, while still nodding to all the traveling she & Maks have done together this season). So given what I just said, you’ll have to forgive me when I ask “So WHY does Maks ‘deserve to win’?” He’s struggled with choreography, he’s struggled with crafting routines that showcase his partner, and he’s struggled with his own behavior. “But Courtney, it’s not about Maks – it’s about MERYL!!!!” I’m sure some of you are going to cry – to which I say “She’s an Olympic gold medal ice dancer that hasn’t been truly challenged all season long. Should she win the MBT for (no pun intended) skating through the season without much of a struggle?” I look at all the tough stuff that Amy & Charlie in particular have had thrown at them throughout the season by their respective pros – and how they’ve struggled, and toiled, and still overcome those obstacles. There’s just no comparison for me. But everyone is going to vote how they’re going to vote (and that’s fine), and I think the die has already been cast that this was “Maks’ season” from the get-go – and everyone has just kind of fallen in line with that mindset. It will be a hollow win, though, IMO – and it’s one I’m sure we’re going to be hearing about for the next 5 years, a la Donny Osmond. But whatever helps Maks (and his fans) feel validated, I guess.
So there’s my two cents. What’s yours? Just as a side note: I still do post here at PureDWTS in the off-season, but with America’s Got Talent starting up next week, you’ll probably see more of me over at Pure AGT this summer. If you’re a fan of the show, come join us! We’re a small (but entertaining) group 😉
Below is a racap of Dancing With The Stars on Good Morning America. Also, Donald Driver And Louis Van Amstel join them to discuss the night. Louis thinks Maks and Meryl should win. Donald thinks Amy is going to win. I’m with Donald!
ETA: For those interested, you can read on Anna Trebunskaya’s thoughts on the dances last night at ABC.
Who will win? Wow, that’s a good question. Based on quality of dancing it should be Meryl. She is a gorgeous, coordinated ice dancer. Then, Amy has the most amazing story behind her. We’ve all watched with our breath held in and tears in our eyes, of sadness or joy. We wanted her to persevere and come out on top. And then there’s Candace, who is like a fresh summer breeze. She has been consistent, positive and charming.
What a night!! I don’t think I will ever forget this season of Dancing With The Stars. It has to be the most tight competition we’ve ever seen on this show…and one of the most controversial. And the Freestyles…wow, I’m still awwwing for them all in different ways. More on that later in Court’s new Power Rankings.
So, let’s go straight to some media and interviews after the show. First, don’t miss a recap below with ABC7’s George Pennacchio! Sharna Burgess and Tony Dovolani weigh in on the freestyles. Tony, of course, is picking Maks and Meryl to win. Note: George said the three finalists went straight to rehearsals after they danced last night to get ready for tonight. Glamour has some “behind the scenes” fun coverage too that you don’t want to miss and they said the same. So, no interviews from the finalists until tomorrow.
Entertainment Tonight also interviewed James and Peta. James is ok with not winning. He’s just thankful for Peta, the experience, and all the new fans he has now.
Also, Getty Images has some breathtaking shots of the night thanks to photographer Adam Taylor. Here are my favorites which say it all for each couple…would you agree? You can view many more at the Getty links below.
ETA: And below is some PopTVDotCom coverage after the show….
ETA2: Here is Extra and Tony with James and Peta…