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PureDWTS Season 21 – Questions We’re Tired of Answering, Volume I

Let me lead off with this: I love our readers. You make everything we do worthwhile, and inspire us to continue writing. We appreciate you…don’t forget that :-)

That being said – sometimes some of you inadvertently (or intentionally) try to test the limits of our patience…and one way in which some individuals seem to do that is to repeatedly ask questions that we’ve already answered – repeatedly – without bothering to check if we’ve already answered it elsewhere first. I get it – we’ve got over 7 years of content here at Pure, and while we do our best to tag the posts so that it’s easier to find things later, sometimes the search bar doesn’t always pick up on some offhand comment that contained a piece of intel, or an explanation of why something happened in the comments section of a post. That being said – if you tune into a post where everyone is talking about “what happened with Henry” and you don’t know what they’re talking about…perhaps it’s a good idea to read a few comments upstream (or even reread the post itself) before you start asking someone to drop everything and fill you in 😉 Don’t be that guy that shows up to a party, butts into a conversation, and demands that everyone fill him in on what has been discussed so far so that he can feel important. Don’t be a needy, lazy reader, k?

All that said – I figured it would probably quiet a lot of inquiries if we started a series where we answered a lot of these popular questions all in one, easily-accessible area, so that we don’t tell the same stories over and over again. I’m sure this will end up being a multi-part series as the season wears on, so if you have any of those burning questions – send ’em our way through the “contact us” button at the top of the page, and we’ll try to answer them in a future installment. So without further ado, here’s the first batch of questions were are just sick to death of answering…this is the last time we’re answering them, so bookmark this page if you think you might forget!

1.) Why isn’t Henry on the show anymore????/What happened with Henry last season???

I’ve probably gotten at least 8 people asking this just in the last few days, and none of them seem willing to do me the courtesy of reading through the comments sections of multiple posts where I’ve explained what happened at-length. So for the FINAL TIME, here is the full story, from the beginning: Henry was tapped to assist Derek with Nastia last season, since Nastia would fly to L.A. from NY on Saturday (and Derek wouldn’t fly out until Sunday night, due to his Spring Spectacular gig) and would need someone to run through her routine with a few times, and then to do camera blocking with on Sunday. In short – Henry was basically just a stand-in for Derek for a few hours a week: not a choreographer, not a creative collaborator, just a stand-in to run through the week’s routine with Nastia. However, somewhere around week 3, when Nastia was doing the samba, Henry started to overstep his bounds a bit – he was trying to change Derek’s choreography as he was doing run-throughs with Nastia, he was confusing her by telling her things that contradicted what she had been taught by Derek, and probably worst of all: he was publicly trying to take a lot more credit for Nastia’s success than he was due. This was perhaps most evident on the week 3 episode of Afterbuzz last season, when Anna *eye roll* made a point of mentioning “how great” Henry had been doing with Nastia…as if he, not Derek, was Nastia’s real partner (and this, kids, is also a reason why I don’t particularly care for Anna anymore – she has had a tendency to take cheap shots at other pros for a few years now). Henry even made a point of referring to Nastia as “his little samba queen” in the same episode. So began the myth that Henry was the one doing all the work in Derek & Nastia’s partnership, and Derek was the big ol’ meanie taking all the credit from poor widdle Henry – and it was a myth that Derek’s detractors just LOVED to repeat, and it didn’t help that the rehearsal package Nastia & Derek got for their samba seemed to paint Derek as the cold taskmaster that was too busy to rehearse with his partner, and Henry as the caring co-collaborator that helped Nastia realize her full potential. In reality, Derek had spent 20+ hours rehearsing with Nastia that week, had choreographed the whole routine, and had Skyped with Nastia & Henry between shows on Saturday night to critique their rehearsals (all of this confirmed by our source). Henry spent about 3.5 hours just running through the routine with Nastia…but was willing to take all of the credit. Now Derek, who tends not to get his feathers too ruffled, was understandably a bit bothered by this, and asked the producers to just be “more honest” with the rehearsal packages, as the samba package was a very inaccurate representation of what went down that week (again, confirmed by our source).  In turn, the producers informed Henry that they would no longer be filming he & Nastia rehearsing together, since it was such a small amount of time compared to what she spent with Derek – and apparently Henry flipped out. Suddenly, he claimed that he didn’t want to help out with Nastia anymore, and was “too busy” with other projects anyway. And before you accuse us of fabricating this story – watch episode 7 of Afterbuzz last season, where Shirley Ballas corroborates it.  God I love Shirley :-) Anywho, god bless our favorite little left crab Sasha, who graciously stepped in and went on to be the best damn stand-in/temporary performance partner Nastia & Derek could have asked for the remainder of the season…and they all lived happily ever after, at least until the propaganda train completely plowed over Nastia in week 9, in a quest to get Rumer Val her his MBT. For Henry, the result was a not-so-happy ending – like most bosses with insubordinate employees, Rob & Co. likely disciplined him for his diva fit by sitting him out for a week or two after the blow-up, and he remained pretty scarce for the rest of season 20, only cropping up in a handful of routines (most notably, on the far right in Nastia’s Charleston…which she danced with Sasha :-) )  And then, when it came time to hire dancers for this season’s troupe, I’m guessing the diva fit was a bit of a black mark on Henry’s resume for the casting staff, and it suddenly became evident that they would rather hire employees that will actually do what they’re told, instead of throwing a tantrum when they’re asked to do something they don’t want to.  Like pretty much every other job on the planet :-) But don’t shed too many tears for poor Henry – he appears to be running a pretty successful escort service out of his Instagram account.  Sorry, did I hit anybody in the head with that shade I just threw? :-)

2.) Why isn’t Artem a pro this season???

The short answer? We, like you, have no idea – Artem was confirmed as a pro in mid-August, and then when it came time for the full cast announcement last week…he was gone. We’re working on hitting up some sources to see if they have heard anything, and all Artem has said is this.  But our theory is that Artem may have originally been paired with Tamar, and for whatever reason, the partner they had allocated for Val either didn’t end up signing or backed out at the last minute (Shay, perhaps, realizing that she really didn’t have time to do DWTS this season after all?) and they opted to give their returning champ Artem’s partner and Artem…was left out in the cold. Could explain why it took so long for Val to meet his partner (even though, from what I can tell, there was no prior commitment Tamar had that prevented him from meeting Tamar earlier), and why he was being melodramatic about not having a partner less than a week ago…perhaps he really didn’t think he had one. Anyone else have any (good) theories?

3.) Who is replacing Len???

No idea at this point.  We’ve heard murmurings about DWTS France somehow being involved, and we’ve got SCD South Africa head judge Michael Wentink acting awfully coy about his possible participation…and then yet other sources are claiming that there will not be a new permanent 4th judge, but a series of guest judges.  Court’s theory? Perhaps they’re tapping a judge from some of the international versions of DWTS each week to be guest judges.  But who knows…

4.) Who was Allison originally paired with?

This seems to be a point of contention – I was told by a source that, as of 8/24, all of the pros except Emma (who didn’t even know if she was going to be on the show or not until that day) either had already met their partners, or at least knew who they were. According the Kristyn, Allison was always guaranteed a partner (as I’m sure Val was as well – perks of being a finalist the previous season, I suppose), but hadn’t been specifically assigned one yet as they were still waiting for some celeb to sign on…so when it came out that Peta wasn’t going to be able to participate this season, Allison was still waiting on a partner and was available. What makes me wonder, though, was that the word on the street was that Lindsay was the one that was planned as Peta’s replacement as late as Monday afternoon – so how did Allison suddenly end up with Andy? And who was this mysterious partner they were waiting on for her? We may never know, as it seems like this season was a comedy of casting errors with multiple celebs that didn’t work out, partner switches, and last minute signings. My one thought is that Lindsay was supposed to be with Andy, but they signed Alek at the last minute and thought she was better suited to him than the “24-7 balls to the walls” attitude of Allison – which, after witnessing how absolutely bewildered poor Alek was at the announcement the other day, I guess I agree with…I think one hour with Allison would have left an Alek-shaped hole in the door of the rehearsal studio.  He’s probably better off with the much-calmer Lindsay, who has hopefully matured a bit since her first outing as a pro 2.5 years ago. But anyway – no idea if Allison was originally paired with someone or not, let alone who it was.  Sorry.

5.) Why was Brittany cut from the troupe?

She appears to actually be back now (I guess both Brittany and Lindsay should thank their lucky stars that Peta had to sit this season out – otherwise, Lindsay would not have been promoted and Brittany would still be without a job) Deep Throat speculates that it’s likely due to a perceived lack of maturity – since the troupe is basically the training ground for potential new pros, if they don’t think you’ll one day (soon) hack it as a pro…you’re out. Deep Throat noted that Brittany just didn’t quite seem mature enough to effectively handle teaching a celeb – so they likely thought it better to cut her loose instead of keeping her on for several seasons and never giving her a pro partner. Plus it made room for a potentially more effective troupe member – though judging from some of the murmurings I’m hearing about how Hayley is struggling with the Latin dances, I’m not sure she’s necessarily an “effective” replacement.

Got more burning questions? Submit them here and we might answer in a future installment.

September 8, 2015 I Written By

Ultrasound sales specialist by day, semi-knowledgeable DWTS fan by night...with a smattering of hair & makeup enthusiast, occasional model, and crazy cat lady peppered in to make things REALLY interesting ;-) I might pee my pants in happiness if Donnie Wahlberg ever does DWTS - or if they ever use "Sunglasses at Night" as a paso doble. Check out some of my other work at!

Your Dancing With The Stars Pro And Troupe Wish List For Season 20

It’s that time again, Dancettes! Time to make your voice heard for the Dance pros you’d like to see dance on Dancing With The Stars Season 20!! I’m not sure these cast wish posts influence the producers, but, sometimes I have to wonder? I picked Allison Holker for the past two seasons (as well as several of you) and last season, we got our wish. So, like in seasons past, let’s do it again. What are your pro wishes for Dancing With the Stars Season 20? Pick only 12 (6 males and 6 females). Also, pick FOUR Troupe Members as well. You can also pick a few Alternatives in case they make the cast a little bigger. Let us know your picks in comments and then we’ll send this post to the Producers in a few weeks.

Here is my Pro Wish List:

Females: Sharna Burgess, Karina Smirnoff, Allison Holker, Emma Slater, Witney Carson, Peta Murgatroyd

Males: Derek Hough, Gleb Savchenko (what I’d give to see this happen), Mark Ballas, Tristan MacManus, Keo Motsepe, Sonny Fredie Pedersen (what I’d give to see this happen)

Troupe: Nika Klju (what I’d give to see this happen), Elena Samodanova (what I’d give to see this happen), Henry Byalikov, Sasha Farber

Alternatives: Brittany Cherry, Jake Kodish, Armen Way, Kym Johnson, Cheryl Burke

Special Note: We plan to do a Celebrity Wish List very soon as well! So stay tuned!

November 28, 2014 I Written By

I'm a fashion and music fan....and I have always loved dancing too of any kind. Dancing With The Stars seems to have this way of bringing all of those things together. One of my favorite dancing quotes at the moment: "No matter what, nobody can take away the dance you've already had...." ~Gleb Savchenko . For fun music and dance mixes, visit WilUnleashed Soundcloud. To view my photography site, see Lisa Kay Photography.

DWTS Who Wore it Better? Part XV – The Pre-Season 14 Edition!

Yep, we’re back to talk fashion for yet another season’s promo pix :-) And kids, this batch was a bit of a challenge for even me – at least 3 brand-spanking new dresses that weren’t dittoed, some wacky alterations, weird lighting, and the fact that we don’t have pix of Cheryl & Katherine yet made this edition a little less fun and a little more frustrating.  But alas, it’s here now, so enjoy! And a very special thanks to our reader Manny, who graciously helped us out with the screen cap of Niecy, since Hulu only has season 13 available to stream and the DWTS website has taken down all of the photos from old seasons…grrrrr. *shakes fist at sky*

Battle of the gold, silver, super-sparkly jive dress: Kym’s pre-season 14 photo shoot vs. Kym’s jive with David in season 13

Heidi: I know I’m going to disagree with Court on this one – by choosing the photo shoot version. :-) I like the more asymmetrical hem and I like her hair better in that pic. But damn, Kym always looks amazing and she does stick to the similar color pallette much of the time.

Court: Kym has always known what looks good on her (everything) and what doesn’t (not much), but I love how she seems to stick to a lot of nude colors and just lets all the embellishments do the talking.  I remember thinking “Wowwwww…that’s soooo sparrrrrkllllllyyyy!” as she walked down the stairs last season in this number.  But alas, the magic is a bit lost in the whitewash of the photo shoot – so I’m gonna go with jive Kym on this one :-)

The winner: We love Kym in the nude (colors) :-)

Battle of the black lace turtleneck tango dress: Bristol’s Argentine tango with Mark in season 11 vs. Martina’s pre-season 14 photo shoot

Court: I think this may actually be the very first ditto of a Bristol costume we’ve ever seen! Although if you’ve seen one Bristol ditto, I think you’ve pretty much seen them all, as this girl wore A LOT of black lace in season 11 – a fact that made my searching though her costumes all the more confusing 😛 But anyway…I gotta say, I’m not really wild about this costume on either woman.  It just seems kinda…dowdy.  But I guess if I had to pick, I’d actually pick Bristol – because I can at least tell it’s a tango costume with the way she’s styled & made up.  Martina…just kinda looks like she’s gesturing for no apparent reason.  But she looks damn good for her age! :-)

Heidi: I can’t pick…too distracted by Marky’s face in that picture. :-) The hell?  Okay, all kidding :::cough::: aside, I have to agree with Courtney. Martina looks fabulous, but Bristol is fully made up for this dress and she wears it pretty well.  I will say, very proud of Martina for going with a dress that is probably more daring on the bottom half than I would have expected.

The winner: Bristol takes this one because we can actually tell what she’s doing. Read more..

March 9, 2012 I Written By

Ultrasound sales specialist by day, semi-knowledgeable DWTS fan by night...with a smattering of hair & makeup enthusiast, occasional model, and crazy cat lady peppered in to make things REALLY interesting ;-) I might pee my pants in happiness if Donnie Wahlberg ever does DWTS - or if they ever use "Sunglasses at Night" as a paso doble. Check out some of my other work at!