DWTS Season 23, Week 9 – Dancing by the Numbers!

This has the potential to be an interesting week, from the standpoint of who goes home. The margins are relatively small (for this late in the game) and this could get REAL real fast. We can hope.

But first, Courtney commented on the fact that Jana has been in or near jeopardy quite a few times now. If you want to read the research I did on Jeopardy a few seasons back, please do so before spouting off and telling me it means nothing.  Anyway, I went back and looked at that post, and sonic did a little work up for me as well which included more recent seasons. Anyway, my original conclusions haven’t fallen apart with the arrival of Rob Wade. It’s still true that if you make multiple appearances in jeopardy you’re more likely than not to be eliminated – often soon. This is even more true if you are the last person to be called safe. Being the last to be called safe sometimes gives the couple the kick they need to last a couple weeks – but after a second time?  No. Lots and lots of people have made two appearances in jeopardy and were last to be called safe. What appears to be true is that if you are last to be called safe twice, you don’t win the show. That has happened ONCE in 23 seasons – Rumer Willis. Coincidence? I think not.  Prior to Season 17, if you had only been in Jeopardy and were last to be called safe even one time, you didn’t win the show –  with 3 exceptions: Donald, JR and Jennifer Grey, but her season was really strange in that all of the 5 were in jeopardy most often while the rest weren’t. That season they seemed to be trying to keep the eliminee a surprise all the time by putting the top people in jeopardy. An experiment, if you will.

As I was saying…five people have been in jeopardy twice and called safe last and have gotten 2nd place – and that’s not really very many when you consider that 24 couples over 23 seasons were the last to be called safe twice. This is the long way of saying that no, Jana is not going to win the show. But further, it’s likely that she only gets as far as 3rd or 4th place (maybe only 5th). Why do I say that when five people have two “last safe” calls and get to second place? Because Jana is up to THREE.  This is a much more rare occurrence. I hypothesize that the reason some people get three is because a combination of over scoring and jeopardy are used to keep those people around long enough to have three instances of “last safe”. Normally it’s two and yer gone. But look at Jana’s scores this week. Two 40’s?? That was a tad ridiculous, all things considered…like the dancing.   Who are the people who have had three or more instances where they were in jeopardy and last to be called safe??

  • Hope and Maks (3)
  • Bill and Emma (4)
  • Bristol and Mark (3)
  • Candace and Mark (3)
  • Carlos and Witney (3)

Gee, one of these things is not like the other!  All of these couples, save one, had some work done to keep them safe. Well, I should qualify that – I remember Courtney and I complaining A LOT about Hope, Bristol and Carlos being overscored so they would stick around longer. I don’t remember it as much with Candace. Bill – I think calling him safe last became kind of a game to the producers – they wanted to see how many times they could do it because his reaction was so funny.  Now, you may ask about another couple or two who was pimped to get them to stick around longer.  Like Chelsea Kane – last to be called safe twice.  You can check out Sonic’s work, below, and form your own conclusions.

It’s my opinion that Jana now firmly fits in the above category of pimpage and jeopardy being used to keep her around over other couples. And I also think she’s going home either this Monday or the following one, unless their long game of getting rid of Calvin actually works.  Like it did with Marilu.

Is this a guarantee? Of course not – it just a bunch of really persuasive facts. In looking at who has multiple instances of being last to be called safe, it seems that most of them were people they wanted to keep around. Yeah, it’s an early warning system to their fans – but you only need one of those if you’re in danger of being eliminated, right? Right.

So now to this past week of this season. Their goal is obviously to get rid of Terra. They called her safe fairly early last week (like they had been doing with Marilu for WEEKS), and they stuck Jana in jeopardy. To me, that means Jana is not getting the votes. I suppose they could do that to her simply for the sake of Drama – but why would they do that? She’s a bit of a non-event. She’s not one of the huge stars that come on this show and can generate a ton of talk. Although her personal life has done that a bit, it’s nothing compared to the days of old on this show.  Putting James in jeopardy would cause DRAMA (look for him to be in jeopardy this coming week, by the way).  Jana ain’t James. No, Jana in jeopardy is a shot across the bow to her fans, trying to generate more votes. So, did it work?


James is at the bottom (so not a big deal) with Calvin and Terra one point above him. Then Laurie and Jana at 80 totally ridiculous points. I’m not a Val fan, but he did FAR better on that Argentine Tango than Gleb did with their Jazz (I mean, Jizz, tm Courtney) – I can see Laurie getting a 40 being reasonable, although I thought she had some balance and placement issues. But I can live with a 40 for that dance. I would have given it a 39, but whatever.  But that contemporary dance was just….horrendous. Both Val and Gleb should be embarrassed by that totally cliché, trite, faux emotional dance. A 40 is bordering on obscene. But when you can’t get away with handing out 8’s to Terra because her dance was too good, and you can’t give out 8’s to either Calvin or James for the same reason, you HAVE TO give Jana all tens. Since Laurie was with her in the contemporary, she gets them too. There has to be a buffer to try to save Jana – James and Calvin are likely safe. The people in trouble are Terra and Jana – and they want Jana (Gleb) in the finale. So, Jana gets perfect scores.

Crazy? Not really. Are the judges this clever? Well, this ain’t even math from where they are sitting. They likely know that James and Calvin are doing well, so when both didn’t dance up to their usual they can hand out 9s without fear. Terra kills it twice and is underscored both times. Jana doesn’t even do as well as Terra and gets two perfect scores.  When your goal is to get rid of Terra, you don’t have to be a rocket scientist (or a geologist) to figure out how to get it done. You hope. 🙂

So James is on the bottom and most likely in no danger whatsoever. But what does he have to do?


Yeah, Terra or Calvin would likely go before James. He only needs 2,300 more votes per million votes cast to beat them – which is actually nothing.  James is so safe – I don’t even hesitate to say that he being eliminated this week would be the biggest shocker ever.

That brings us to Calvin and Terra.


Whoever gets one more vote per million votes cast between those two would be safe. I could certainly be wrong (and I would not be surprised to see Calvin and Jana in jeopardy), but I think Calvin is getting that vote over Terra, which would make him safe.

I also think that Laurie the ringer is very safe. That leaves us with Jana and Terra. So just how likely is it that Jana goes home?  Well, look at it this way. ALL of the following things have to happen for Jana to go home:

  • James has to get 15,500 more votes per million votes cast than Jana, AND;
  • Terra AND Calvin have to get 13,300 more votes per million votes cast than Jana, AND;
  • Jana does NOT get the one more vote per million votes cast than Laurie.

That list is pretty short and not very good news for Jana. Normally I would say that Terra doesn’t stand a chance against this group, but the judges and producers are just trying way too hard with Jana. Terra was called safe early this past week and Jana was put in jeopardy – and it wasn’t the first time but the THIRD.

I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that I think Jana might get the boot this week. It will be close, and I could be wrong. If I’m wrong about Jana it’s probably Terra. I hope not. If I had been thinking clearly, I would have thrown my votes to Terra instead of James, since James is unlikely to be going anywhere this week. But alas, I wasn’t.

So there you have it. Am I right or wrong?

Just for grins, I’m going to predict that they put either James and Jana in jeopardy, or Terra and Jana in jeopardy. I think they get more out of the James in jeopardy thing, but if their little hearts are set on Laurie winning, they’ll go Terra and Jana.  If James IS winning and they’re cool with that, they’ll put him in jeopardy.