Dancing with the Stars Season 23, Week 8 – Dancing by the Numbers!

Well, another week, another clusterf*^k.  The most disheartening thing about all the manipulation and games is how easily some of you just buy it hook, line and sinker. After all these years of us telling you not to just blindly believe the packages, you still just believe. You will read in to moments in time exactly what they want you to read in.  Did it happen? Sure…but with the context removed its meaningless – and less than half the story. I think this blind belief in anything on TV is how Donald Trump is actually in the running to be president.    Marilu told me they had their best week ever….Derek’s blog confirmed that…yet what we saw on TV was the opposite, and some cleverly manipulated moments in time. I’m getting to where I actually hate watching this show.

The thing that confuses me is…is it even necessary to do this stuff? Marilu has troubles during the live show – they can reasonably score her lower than some of the other couples because of that. So, WHY are they working so hard to make their packages bad? I have to think that up until last week she was getting the votes, perhaps a lot of votes. She doesn’t look it, but she’s 64 years old and her dancing doesn’t suck at all. She has mistakes – and I would lay money on it that the live show issue is a result of extreme nitpicking from early on – but damn, she looks amazing.  How is that the look of 64?? The main demo that watches this show IS the 65 year old crowd. I would bet they WERE voting for her. But are they still?? Everyone is clearly susceptible to the packages. The producers may have finally succeeded.

And did a hatchet job on Derek in the process. Their best pro by ANY metric, and they’ve shown their hand to him. Did they finally go too far? One can only hope. But Derek will be fine – his schedule is full (3 non-DWTS Primetime and/or Holiday TV shows before the end of the year may be a record for any DWTS pro…or celeb) and viewer’s memories are disturbingly short.  But look at the show and the edits as a whole – did you see anything else that made you go WTF?? Like maybe Val crying? Seriously, how long was that package? And how long do they spend talking to Laurie and Val after their dance (to the point that others got tiny fractions of that time)?  The week before – check it out also. Derek said not one nice thing to ANYONE, while Val was constantly shown being the loving, caring supportive guy that we know DEREK is – editing can make it all into bizarro world. Remember, I rewatch the shows for my other site…and when you watch them back to back, it’s glaring. Too bad Gleb opened his mouth and acted like part of the Fam last week or he’d be in good shape too.  They sure are trying hard to turn either or both Gleb and Val into the new Derek.  Yeah, how’s that lawsuit going, Val? Lucky you have the DWTS producers to work on your image for you…now, if they would just take away your social media, it might stick.

Anyway, one look at the leaderboard and you see that the producers agenda this week was extremely successful….but I’m sure it’s just a coincidence that Terra and Marilu are SO far below Jana and Calvin (to name two who didn’t dance up to the score they were handed) , right? Uh huh.


Also, since only certain couples got additional points, and not the 22 to 30 points either, the spreads are larger – not as many point handed out. Marilu is at the bottom – really, CAI, a 7? That’s pretty shitty.  Don’t get me wrong, the spread isn’t huge, it’s just larger than last week.


As you can see, Marilu needs about 5k votes per million votes cast to stay over Terra. Once upon a time I would have said that would be easy for her to do – but they did such a hatchet job on her and Derek (more Derek than her, actually) that I just don’t know if they got the votes.

But look at what Marilu needs to be safe over Jana – and boy, they sure want Jana to stay, don’t they. She has the whiff of Audrina Patridge about her – only she ain’t as nice as Audrina – and I suspect she isn’t getting the votes. That 35k votes per million votes cast – I would be shocked if Marilu and Terra both got the votes and Jana was eliminated.  Oh, I skip ahead.

Terra is in pretty much the same boat as Marilu and I suspect that one of them will be eliminated on Monday. Which one? Let’s discuss. Here are Terra’s numbers:


Terra either needs for Marilu to NOT get the 5k votes per million votes cast, or she needs to get 30k votes to beat Jana.

I’m sorry, I still get pissed thinking about it – Jana is not 30k votes better than either Terra or Marilu, in my book.  But it’s an interesting question. Why does Jana keep landing in jeopardy, despite such generous scores?? She’s been in it or near it a few times now, by my count. Marilu has NEVER been in Jeopardy. Terra’s been in it once. There are a couple competing theories about jeopardy, and I think I’ve mentioned that I studied it several seasons ago (before twatwaffle Rob took over as executive producer – is that two words?).  One, is they use jeopardy to stimulate votes for a particular couple. Another is that it’s an early warning sign that that couple is in danger of leaving soon – this was true more than half the time.  Sometimes it’s just drama. :::shrug::: None of the people they’ve put in jeopardy so far have been particularly “dramatic” – James and Laurie would be dramatic.

AND, of course, if you need to “stimulate” votes for someone, then isn’t that the same thing as a “early warning” that they are in danger of leaving??  Sometimes jeopardy, and sometimes it doesn’t. Only James, Laurie and Marilu (of the remaining couples) haven’t been in jeopardy at all. Of course, I don’t think anyone believes that Laurie and James are in any danger of going anywhere. But it makes you wonder about Marilu.  Then again, you think of the crappy packages and you have to realize they wouldn’t put her in jeopardy and undo all the work those packages did in suppressing her vote.

So, that brings us right back to where we were. I think Marilu could beat Terra if NOT for the packages and the judges relentless nitpicking – honestly, I watched the team dances (finally) and there was NO WAY that Viennese Waltz was 3 points better than Team Future’s. Sorry – it was very pretty, but it was not that special. Neither of them were (and Team Future’s was certainly harder to execute) – yet the team with those they want to get rid of is under scored by two points. Really, CAI – an 8? Ridiculous. It certainly seems like an agenda – and they’re working it REALLY hard.  Which is why I can’t even begin to guess who is going home.

I guess the question we have to ask is – did big game WORK? You tell me. You’ve read Derek’s blog where he talks about what went on in their rehearsals versus what was shown (two weeks in a row now), and you read my interview with Marilu where she says they had their best week yet this past week. But the voting was done on Monday night – did that package do enough to suppress Marilu’s vote so that she goes home? Because I’m a Derek fan and a natural cynic, I tend to say yes. But I can’t trust my gut. Unfortunately, I don’t trust y’all’s gut much more than mine. 🙂

Anyway, I think it’s either Marilu or Terra and I think it doesn’t matter because the one left behind will follow the other out the door the following week.  The shocking elimination would be someone else, and that someone else is most likely to be Jana. I don’t see it happening, BUT much larger margins have been overcome in the past and by more people.  What would it take?


In order for Jana to be a shocking elimination, ALL of the following things would have to happen:

  • Marilu would have to get 35k more votes per million votes cast, than Jana, AND;
  • Terra would have to get 30k more votes per million votes cast than Jana, AND;
  • Calvin gets ONE more vote per million votes cast than Jana, AND;
  • Jana DOESN’T get the 15k more votes per million votes cast than Laurie, AND;
  • Jana DOESN’T get the 25k more votes per million votes cast than James.

All of those things happen and Jana goes home. I’m quite sure she’s not getting the votes to get past Laurie or James, and most likely Calvin is beating her. But I don’t think that BOTH Marilu and Terra are beating her and that would have to happen for her to be the not so “shocking” elimination.

Side note, just in case: Keep in mind also, it’s not necessarily that Marilu and Terra would have to get a ton of votes, it could also be that Jana isn’t getting many at all – does that make sense? Jana is a good 7 points ahead of Marilu and Terra and if her voting is as poor as I suspect it is, it could be that her fans assume she’s safe, or vote splitters throw their votes to the bottom of the leader board. Could spell trouble – just throwing that out there in the event of a surprise on Monday.

So, anyway, most likely either Terra or Marilu are going home. Which one? Well, it could go either way. I think that the Marilu/Derek combo has a stronger fanbase AND Marilu is right in line with the demo, but while Marilu has been getting harsh packages, Terra comes off pretty well. So…it’s a toss up.  I can’t call it – either Marilu or Terra with Jana a distant glimmering possibility (aka a ray of hope for a few of us).