DWTS Season 25, Week 9 – Dancing by the Numbers!

This week, like last week, seems fairly obvious with regard to who’s going to go home. But beyond that? This show feels like anybody’s game.

But first things first…let’s not waste any time. The judges were quite clear with their preference this past week, underscoring Drew a bit to make sure he is the one to leave this coming Monday. They didn’t underscore him but by a point or so, but it may not take much more than that. Let’s take a look at the scores.

At this point in the season, and with these contestants, that three-point difference between Drew and Frankie is likely very significant.  Drew has a bit of work to do to catch Frankie – early in the season I would say with confidence that Drew could do it, but now? I think Frankie has gained serious ground over the first nine weeks of the show. Serious ground. To the point that I think Frankie could win this thing, depending on how the scoring plays out on Monday night. But I skip ahead – what does DREW need to be safe on Monday night, besides a minor miracle?

As you can see, Drew needs roughly 11,200 more votes per million votes cast than Frankie to stay over Frankie – and I don’t see that happening.

As you can also see from that table above, both Lindsey and Jordan are nicely cushioned from both Drew and Frankie.  I don’t see any surprises on that score happening on Monday night.

These numbers posts get very short at the end of the season – there’s really not all that much to say.  I like everyone in the final four very much and would be happy to see any of them win. What do I think will happen?? Well, I think Drew will likely be eliminated on Monday night. After that, it gets very sketchy and will depend heavily on the scores handed out on Monday night.

We look at this every season and in the past the winner has always been fairly obvious to us by the end of the first night of the finale.  We have a general feel for the show after all this time, and usually it’s a gut feeling as to who’s going to come out on top (much like the pros SHOULD know when they’re going to be eliminated – they’re much closer to the tea leaves, after all). Sometimes we know but are desperately hoping for a different outcome – like when Laurie beat Hinch.  I can’t remember a season where we’ve been truly surprised by a win or a loss. Disappointed, yes – but not surprised.  This season has the potential, in my opinion, to do just that.

Frankie, Jordan and Lindsey. Two weeks ago I would have said that Lindsey and Jordan were going to be the top 2, with one of them (no idea which one) coming out on top. Now, my gut is telling me that it’s going to be Jordan and Frankie in the top 2 and I still have no idea who’s going to win.  The odds are in Jordan’s favor, for sure.  There was a shift in Jordan’s favor last week and it kind of centers around the “one bad leg and one bad eye” thing. That humanized him in a big way – not that they were asking for sympathy or anything, on the contrary. You could see that eye was giving him problems during the judges commentary. Combine that with an off week for Mark and Lindsey, and you have a shift in tone of the show, at least for me.  It’s hard to describe, but I certainly felt it at the end of the night that there was a change in standing.

Frankie has been coming on strong the last several weeks and I think he’s in the mold of Kyle Massey or Rob Kardashian or Kelly Osborne – people who weren’t the very best dancers, but who you felt had the audience squarely behind them, to the point that they could pull off an upset.  Kyle was a much better dancer than either Rob or Kelly…and I would say that Frankie is a better dancer than them as well.  But none of them won. I remember being worried that Kyle would displace Jennifer. I don’t think I was ever truly worried about Rob or Kelly…and I do think that Frankie is more like Kyle than either of them. How the show ends depends heavily on the dancing Monday night and how the judges score them.  If Frankie is less than 3 points or so from Lindsey and/or Jordan, look out.

Of course, there are three things at play in the scoring on Monday night:

  1. The judges like to be right, so often their scoring reflects the past voting;
  2. They don’t want to over rule the audience with their scoring;
  3. But they also want the better dancers to win, for the sake of the credibility of the show.

So, if someone is behind at the end of Monday night, they possibly have been behind on votes for a while – unless someone blows a dance. I don’t think they underscore at this point to manipulate the outcome – too late for that.  It’s kinda late to do anything about number 3, but if the scores are tied or ridiculously close, considering the dancing that was done, that generally means they are leaving it up to the audience to decide.

So, what will it be??