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PureDWTS Season 27 – And the New Troupe Member Is…

Vladislav “Vlad” Kvartin! Filling in the slot left by Brandon getting promoted to pro 🙂

Some of you might remember him as part of the cast of Maks/Val/Peta’s “Confidential” tour.  He’s also an instructor at Dance with Me in New Jersey, and appears to do some modeling on the side (bookmark that for future questions about height!) Is it just me, or do he and Artur look like they could be brothers…?

 

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2️⃣2️⃣ grateful, inspired, excited. Stay tuned…

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September 6, 2018 I Written By

Ultrasound sales specialist by day, semi-knowledgeable DWTS fan by night...with a smattering of hair & makeup enthusiast, occasional model, baker, 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. Follow me (and my dog!) on Twitter & Instagram: @putuincespence & @BirkinTheBulldog

PureDWTS Court Rants: Why Hayley Didn’t Get A Pro Spot on Season 27

Ok, so when the pro lineup was announced earlier this week on GMA, I saw a lot of folks thrilled for Brandon – and even more that were sad about Hayley not getting promoted to pro. I was honestly kind of shocked that so many people were incredulous about her not getting a pro spot – to me, it was pretty easy to see why…they just ran out of spots.  But in light of me getting some genuinely curious questions from fans who wondered why Hayley was passed over for a pro role, here’s my honest opinion.

But first, let’s get this main point straight: there is not an unlimited number of pro slots.

THERE IS NO MORE ROOM AT THE INN.  I REPEAT – NO. ROOM. AT. THE. INN!

Fall season traditionally has had (13) couples (we won’t talk about the chaos of season 9).  It’s a nice number, and usually fits pretty nicely with the (usual) 10 week schedule.  Since (13) is an odd number, we’re either going to end up with (6) female pros and (7) male ones, or vice versa. Which we get more of is solely dependent upon who gets cast – if they happen to get (7) female celebs to sign on, then it’s your lucky day, boys – one more male pro slot just opened up.  Sorry, ladies – we only need (6) of you this season. Just the way the cookie crumbles, I’m afraid.  Due to the budget and schedule, it’s simply not feasible to “add” another couple, particularly if it’s only so one of the pros can have a shot.  NONE of the pros are that important.

But why couldn’t they have sat one of the other female pros out, so Hayley could get a turn?

Ok, let’s take a look at who we’re working with here: of the 6 female pros this season, 5 are MBT holders.  Right off the bat, I don’t think any MBT-holder is going to get benched in favor of a pro that isn’t battle-tested. One of them is a 2-time MBT winner, and the sole OG pro from the formative years of the show – and Cheryl is still really popular, so as far as I’m concerned, she probably has an open spot waiting for her whenever she wants. Jenna is the current MBT-holder, and just came off a strong season with Adam and an impressive first choreographic outing on SYTYCD – regardless of how you feel about Jenna as a person, the girl’s got choreo chops, and that’s what this show needs right now…so I don’t see the sense in cutting her in favor of Hayley. Lindsay is another choreo heavyweight and a recent MBT winner – plus she seems to get along fantastically with all of her partners, so it’s beneficial to keep her on as well.  Witney’s MBT win wasn’t as recent, but she is a choreographer that has started blossoming these past few seasons…so it makes sense to keep her as well. That leaves us with Emma & Sharna.  Emma’s a fairly recent MBT-winner as well, and is extremely good at turning partners that are not much to sneeze at on paper into competent contestants – plus she’s married to another pro, which TPTB need now that their token married couple has flown the coop. Sharna’s MBT-less, but has more than proven herself as a skilled choreographer – and she’s popular. I’m not sure who we’re supposed to be cutting here…

But it’s not fair that Hayley’s been in the troupe for 7 seasons, and Brandon’s only been in it for 3 seasons and he got a pro spot first!

First, you need to let go of the notion that this show somehow has to be “fair”. It seldom is, particularly to the female pros; and then there’s the small matter of Val basically being handed ringer after ringer, season after season. But I digress. Secondly, you’re comparing apples & oranges – Hayley is a contemporary dancer that only started dancing ballroom within the last 3-4 years; Brandon is a ballroom dancer that is cross-trained in contemporary and other styles, and has been doing it for quite a bit longer than Hayley.  On paper, Brandon is a much safer bet – especially when you look at some of the other contemporary-dancers-who-got-a-crash-course-in-ballroom pros we’ve had: Tyne (who had one short, unmemorable season and we never saw her again) and Allison (great at contemporary, but not-so-great at ballroom/Latin, and was cut after 4 seasons).  Right now, the ballroom dancers cross-trained in other styles have a lot easier row to hoe on DWTS than do the contemporary dancers who have only taken up ballroom in the last few years. Brandon also won the junior pro competition on DWTS back in 2007. And once again, THEY NEEDED MORE MALE PROS THIS SEASON. It’s not as if Hayley would have gotten a spot if Brandon didn’t – she can’t partner a female celeb. Also, tenure in the troupe isn’t everything – we’ve seen enough troupe members do a handful of seasons and then get let go, and Sasha seems to get shuffled back to the troupe every so often as well, despite being promoted to pro awhile back.

But why do the men seem to get promoted from troupe more often than the women?

I’m not sure this is really true, as the last few promotions from the troupe (prior to Brandon) that we’ve seen are Alan, Jenna, Lindsay (although she was a pro to begin with, went to the troupe, then went back to pro) and Witney – statistically, you’re more likely to get promoted to pro if you’re a female in the troupe than a male, as the female pro lineup seems to vary quite a bit more these days due to marriages/pregnancies.  But as a side note, I’ll say this: the current female pros, on the whole, are FAR more skilled as teachers and choreographers than the male pros.  Every single female pro in the lineup this season is both a stellar choreographer and a stellar teacher – I can’t say the same for the men.  I honestly feel like the male pros as a whole need all the help they can get – with the departure of Mark & Derek, there is little hope in terms of strong male choreographers.  Sasha & Artem seem to really try, and seem to do pretty well about 60% of the time; I think Alan is still pretty green and trying to figure out his choreographic identity; Gleb & Keo, bless them, are not great choreographers. You know how I feel about Val’s choreography – it’d be pretty good, if he would just stop with all the props/time-wasting/troupe-overutilization.  We need a dynamite male choreographer – and I think it could be Brandon. I heard tremendous praise for his choreography skills during Juniors, and since he’s coming from the same school/era that gave us Lindsay, Witney, & Jenna, I think he’s got some serious chops. I tend to think of it more as a compliment to the women that they seem to be keeping the ladies the same while shaking up the male pro lineup more and more these days – the women are killing it, so why mess with something that works? The men need work – so they keep tweaking the lineup.

But…but…will Hayley ever got a shot at being a pro???

I’m sure she’ll get her shot, probably within the next year or so.  I think it helped that Sharna sat out Juniors, as that created a mentor vacancy for Hayley to fill and somewhat prove herself.  I think Peta’s out for the foreseeable future (if not permanently), as she’s expressed a desire for more kids; additionally, Sasha & Emma have said they want to start trying for kids next year, so depending on their success in that arena (hehe), we could see a female pro slot opening up in the spring (if there’s a spring season) or fall (more likely). There’s also the fact that both Lindsay & Witney have been married a few years now – what’s to say they might not start thinking about kids soon? Or even Jenna? And then there’s Sharna, who seems to be blossoming professionally – she may find herself occupied with other gigs before long, and might decide that she’s outgrown DWTS. There’s not a single pro that has been on every single season of DWTS – the pro lineup isn’t static, and if you’re patient, long-running troupe members do eventually get promoted. Relax – I’m sure Hayley will get her moment, when a slot opens up.

Just start praying for a DWTS baby boom, I guess 😉

August 30, 2018 I Written By

Ultrasound sales specialist by day, semi-knowledgeable DWTS fan by night...with a smattering of hair & makeup enthusiast, occasional model, baker, 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. Follow me (and my dog!) on Twitter & Instagram: @putuincespence & @BirkinTheBulldog

Dancing with the Stars Season 25 – PRO WATCH!!

It’s that time of year once again folks. And sans Derek and Mark, I can’t say I’m terribly enthused…unless we can get Sasha or Sharna a MBT this time around. 😉

If you have something to contribute, PLEASE PROVIDE a SOURCE – by that I mean a link. We appreciate the help, but it needs to be sourced, otherwise it’s just a distraction. Thx.

Derek recently said, very firmly, that he’s not coming back. Since he’s committed to NBC I would assume that to be solid, despite what he says about Celine Dion. 😉 I’m fairly sure I heard Mark say that he is out as well, but I’m not as sure about that. Peta has started playing the Chmerkovskiy salary negotiation game – all three (Peta, Val and Maks) have implied they “might” be back. Peta pretty much outright said if she gets a good partner. I have a question mark by Jenna with the word out because I think it hinges on SYTYCD. Based on her pick, I suspect she’ll be available.

ETA2: It’s Pro Reveal Day on GMA!! Watch this space down here and I’ll be updating (or trying to) as we go!

We think Mark is back based on the silhouette!!  Pray…our only male choreographic hope sans Derek!!

Gee, I had forgotten how lame GMA is. :::rolls eyes:::  This is why I watch CBS This Morning. This show is crap.

Thank you Jesus. Mark is back. Please give him a decent partner. oOooo…sounds like they lured him back with his partner.

LOL to Bruno!!

Shit. Looks like Sasha might have gotten hosed. Alan lovers got their way for some mysterious reason. Let’s hope he lives up to the hype. I have my doubts.

There might still be a pro to be revealed, since we appear to be one short….

ETA: With this latest update from ET, it looks like we now have a full roster of pros.  Sorry, Jenna/Allison/Sasha fans. Cheryl fans, rejoice! 🙂 -Court-

Male Pros
Val – IN
Gleb – IN
Mark – IN (Hooray!!)
Artem – IN
Derek – OUT
Sasha – (OUT??? not announced and we already have 7)
Maks – IN
Keo – IN
Alan – IN

Female Pros
Sharna – IN
Kym – OUT
Emma – IN
Witney – IN
Allison – OUT
Lindsay – IN
Jenna – OUT
Cheryl – IN
Peta – IN

Status of Former Pros (You never know!)
Tristan MacManus – No, appears to have sworn off TV dancing
Anna Trebunskaya – Expecting Baby #2
Lacey Schwimmer – Unlikely
Louis Van Amstel – ?
Chelsie Hightower – ?
Corky Ballas – ?
Karina Smirnoff –
Edyta Sliwinska –
Tony Dovolani –

The Troupe
Brittany Cherry – Filling in for Jenna for first three weeks
Britt Stewart – In
Hayley Ebert – In
Brandon Armstrong – In
Sasha Farber – In
Jenna Johnson – In
Artur Adamski – In
Shannon Holtzapffel – Out
Dennis Jauch – Out
Kiril Kulish – Out

ETA: Let the guessing begin!! I guess Tony and Cheryl.

August 10, 2017 I Written By

I'm a nerd and proud of it. Two degrees in geology also means I love BEER. :-) I'm also a Derek lover - proud of that too. So don't scream at those of us on this site and call us a bunch of "biased Derek-lovers" - it's just ME. :-) It may sound like I hate DWTS at times, but really, I'm just a snarky nitpicker from way back. And I'm cynical and jaded too. But I do love DWTS. :-)

PureDWTS – Dmitry Choreographs for Jenna & Kiki; Val Choreographs for Paul & Sydney on SYTYCD

So the live shows this season on So You Think You Can Dance started last night, and there was of course cross-over to DWTS – Jenna is back as an All-Star again, as is sometimes-DWTS-pro-dance-lurker/former MOVE cast member Paul Karmiryan; Dmitry is also choreographing again.  Additionally, Jenna has picked former DWTS troupe member Kiki Nyemchek as her partner this season, and Val has signed on to choreograph.

I was kinda shocked to see Kiki again – I didn’t realize he’s as young as he is (25 – I honestly thought he was already in his late 20’s five years ago), which means he was only 18 when he started in the DWTS troupe wayyyy back when; pretty sure he was a Fam hire. Judging from the comments on YouTube for their cha-cha, he still appears to be the pretty bland guy I remember from the troupe – the general sentiment seems to be that people preferred Jenna’s other partner and are disappointed that she picked Kiki over him:

Oof.  I see that Dmitry’s choreography hasn’t improved much – the song is awful, and the whole dance just felt like a non-event.  Couldn’t even tell you what Kiki did, as Jenna outdanced him the whole time. Paul & Sydney seemed to fare slightly (very slightly) better with Val’s choreography…

Oh look – the high kick is apparently a permanent thing now 😛 And there seemed to be a lot of stop-and-go, so no question – this is Val’s choreography, and this felt like a slight remix of Normani’s cha-cha…but less energetic. I will say I preferred it slightly to Dmitry’s cha-cha; but is it just me, or is Sydney…not all that great? She looks more like a contemporary or hip-hop dancer trying to do ballroom to me, than an actual ballroom dancer. She reminds me of that salsa dancer from several seasons ago (Cristina something, maybe?) that they tried to pass off as a ballroom dancer – just seems to lack polish & confidence in her movements.

Prediction: neither couple is likely to last long on SYTYCD, as is usually the trend – SYTYCD is just not particularly ballroom-friendly or ballroom-appreciative. Did any of you watch? What are your thoughts?

Be sure to check out Amanda’s review of last night’s show over at Pure SYTYCD.

August 8, 2017 I Written By

Ultrasound sales specialist by day, semi-knowledgeable DWTS fan by night...with a smattering of hair & makeup enthusiast, occasional model, baker, 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. Follow me (and my dog!) on Twitter & Instagram: @putuincespence & @BirkinTheBulldog

PureDWTS Season 24 – Jenna Johnson Taking a Season Off

Jenna fans asking if she’s gonna be in the troupe, I think you just got your answer:


Given that things on the pro front seem really, really strange this season, I don’t really know whether this was really her choice or is coming from someone higher up.  She seems upbeat, though, so I wish her the best and hope she gets what she needs out of her break.

February 28, 2017 I Written By

Ultrasound sales specialist by day, semi-knowledgeable DWTS fan by night...with a smattering of hair & makeup enthusiast, occasional model, baker, 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. Follow me (and my dog!) on Twitter & Instagram: @putuincespence & @BirkinTheBulldog

Dancing with the Stars Season 24 – PRO WATCH!!

It’s that time of year once again folks. There are other sites out there mimicking us, but none of them that I would bank on just yet.

Which means that we know Derek is out. Also, according to a Good Morning America announcement today, Maks and Peta are dancing. If you have something to contribute, PLEASE PROVIDE a SOURCE – by that I mean a link. We appreciate the help, but it needs to be sourced, otherwise it’s just a distraction. Thx.

ETA1: And Tony confirms he’s out for this season.  Not gonna lie, I’m disappointed – he was always so kind to his partners, moreso than some other pros that will likely get a spot…-Court-

ETA2: Witney and Sharna are confirmed per People Magazine as is Val…but I do wonder if they are making the same silly assumption that others do re: the poster. ~Heidi

ETA3: According to People, Jenna is OUT! ~ Vogue

ETA4: Vogue again. Gleb is IN again according to this interview. YAYYY! Can you tell I’m excited?! 🙂 Thanks to @GleekyZ for sending.

ETA5: And in the first development this season that actually has me excited, an old favorite returns…yes kids, She of the Awesome Boobage is back…Kym 😀 -Court-

ETA6: Not sure on this, but, according to @DWTSGossip, Allison is out. I think I am going to cry if true. I love her. – Vogue

ETA7: Confirmed – Keo is back. Kinda thought he might be, since I think he was only set aside last season in order to bring Gleb back on board. -Court-

ETA8: Source confirms that Sasha, Lindsay, & Emma are all IN.  Doing some extreme vetting over here, folks…-Court-

ETA9: According to ET, Mark and Karina are out too. Dang. And to anyone thinking this site hates Mark, you couldn’t be more WRONG. ~ Vogue

ETA10: Not sure if anyone is really still watching this post, but it looks like Jenna is also out as a troupe member this season. To address some of the chatter on Twitter – no, we don’t know what Sasha’s talking about; no, we don’t know if Mark is back in as a surprise; no, we still don’t have a confirmation on Artem’s status. We’ll share if we get any updates…-Court-

Male Pros
Val – IN
Gleb – IN
Mark – OUT
Artem –
Derek – OUT
Sasha – IN
Maks – IN
Keo – IN

Female Pros
Sharna – IN
Kym – IN
Emma – IN
Witney – IN
Allison – OUT??
Lindsay – IN
Jenna – OUT
Cheryl – OUT
Peta – IN

Status of Former Pros
Tristan MacManus – No, appears to have sworn off TV dancing
Anna Trebunskaya – ??
Lacey Schwimmer – Unlikely
Louis Van Amstel – ?
Chelsie Hightower – ?
Corky Ballas – ?
Karina Smirnoff – OUT
Edyta Sliwinska – OUT (pregnant)
Tony Dovolani – OUT

The Troupe
Brittany Cherry – ??
Britt Stewart – ??
Alan Bersten – ??
Hayley Ebert – ??
Shannon Holtzapffel – ??
Dennis Jauch – ??
Kiril Kulish – ??
Jenna Johnson – OUT

February 21, 2017 I Written By

I'm a nerd and proud of it. Two degrees in geology also means I love BEER. :-) I'm also a Derek lover - proud of that too. So don't scream at those of us on this site and call us a bunch of "biased Derek-lovers" - it's just ME. :-) It may sound like I hate DWTS at times, but really, I'm just a snarky nitpicker from way back. And I'm cynical and jaded too. But I do love DWTS. :-)

PureDWTS Season 23, Court Rants: Why I Don’t Really Care About the Troupe

Let me preface this rant with this: I know everyone is excited for the season to start.  I know that there hasn’t been a whole lot to report (yet). So I’m willing to cut people a little bit of slack – I think we’re all just looking for stuff to discuss until the next piece of intel falls into our laps. What’s puzzling to me is that of all things there is to talk about, I’m seeing an inordinate number of questions about the troupe – a fixture on the show that I find to be of little consequence anymore.

Not sure if it’s just not as exciting to talk about the pros that we’ve seen year after year or if people really do feel passionately about the troupe, but I guess it’s just hard for me to relate when people seem very invested in whether or not [insert dancer here] is going to be in the troupe again or might get a shot at pro a certain season.  It’s of such little interest to me that I don’t even really actively seek spoilers about the troupe in the pre-season – I’d rather focus my efforts on the pros and their celeb partners, so you’ll have to forgive me if I respond with a bit of frustration when I get questions on Twitter about “Have you heard who’s in the troupe?” or “Do you think so-and-so will get promoted to pro this season?”

So for those of you who don’t understand why the troupe is not all that important to me (and Heidi, really), I give you this: the 7 reasons why Court doesn’t care about the troupe. Read more..

August 15, 2016 I Written By

Ultrasound sales specialist by day, semi-knowledgeable DWTS fan by night...with a smattering of hair & makeup enthusiast, occasional model, baker, 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. Follow me (and my dog!) on Twitter & Instagram: @putuincespence & @BirkinTheBulldog

Dancing with the Stars Season 23 – PRO WATCH!!

Welp. I must say, my snark is extremely rusty because it’s been on vacation. 🙂 I’ll see if I can whip something out before the end of this post.

So, you may have seen in an earlier post that Val blessed us with several nuggets that only a C-bro can knock out, strongly implying (well, out right proclaiming) that he’s already connected with his partner. Hey, if you don’t have choreo, you work with what you have. 😉 Plus he’s not going to go “Hollywood” (like his brother and everyone else on this show – as if it were a bad thing – it’s called a CAREER after dancing).

I am working on the assumption (despite what he says) that Derek is out for good. I think the only way we see him again is if he gets an unexpected hole in his schedule and he’s afraid of boredom and they offer him a shit ton of money. And this *could* happen, although I wouldn’t count on it, since he was talking about “fun projects” in his off time. That said, “Singin’ in the Rain” has been delayed from late 2016 – early 2017 to solidly 2017. No date yet…because they don’t have a theater, because Broadway is doing well per Derek. This means, if we don’t see him in the Spring 2017 season, he won’t be on the show until 2018 at the earliest. Keep in mind, also, that I’m talking about him competing. He could certainly do some pro dances. Kinda surprised he hasn’t popped up on SYTYCD yet, honestly. Non-compete clause?? Read more..

August 8, 2016 I Written By

I'm a nerd and proud of it. Two degrees in geology also means I love BEER. :-) I'm also a Derek lover - proud of that too. So don't scream at those of us on this site and call us a bunch of "biased Derek-lovers" - it's just ME. :-) It may sound like I hate DWTS at times, but really, I'm just a snarky nitpicker from way back. And I'm cynical and jaded too. But I do love DWTS. :-)

PureDWTS Season 22, Week 3 – An Update on Mark Ballas

As we mentioned yesterday, Mark was seen around the rehearsal studio yesterday, which seems to indicate that he is still very much in the competition this season.  Now we have a bit more behind-the-scenes info to share…

…according to a source, Mark is still injured, and given the nature of the injury, it seems potentially serious (I’m guessing they’ll share his diagnosis in the package on Monday). Mark is currently trying to rest his back as a result. HOWEVER, Mark has every intention of dancing with Paige on Monday if he’s able, and is still very much Paige’s partner.  Alan & Hayley have both been assisting them during rehearsals for their paso doble, but Mark is running the show – his concept, his choreography.  From the impression I got – the situation is still very up-in-the-air, but Mark is determined to dance.

I think the captions on the Instagram picture of Paige & Alan he posted on Tuesday very clearly indicate that he intends to remain Paige’s partner this season:

So what do I make of this? Well I think all the Alan fans that seem to be creeping out of the woodwork, hoping that Mark will “give Alan a shot at being a pro” need to slow their roll quite a bit, because I don’t think Mark has any intention of giving Paige up without a fight – and rightfully so.  I remember Deep Throat telling me how absolutely THRILLED Mark was to get Paige as a partner this season – he’d been hoping she’d get a shot on the show for awhile, and I’d even go so far as to guess that she was probably one of his “dream partners”. And Paige has got a great work ethic and a lot of talent – talent that I think is best harnessed by a seasoned pro with two MBT’s and a lot of choreography experience under his belt, and NOT a completely green, un-battle-tested newb from the troupe. This is quite possibly the most competitive season we’ve ever seen, kids – and if Paige wants a fighting chance (no pun intended) of lasting this season, Mark is her best bet.  If anything, I think the rest of the pros this season would mop the floor with Alan, experience-wise, if he were suddenly to become Paige’s full-time partner – and the resulting failure could potentially torpedo any future shots at being a pro that he might have…think about it.  This is quite possibly the WORST season to come in as a rookie pro and try to prove yourself…so why would you want to subject him to that? So you can watch him gyrate around with his shirt open and a dopey grin on his face? 🙂

Anyway, I wish Mark the speediest and most painless of recoveries, and I’ve got my fingers crossed he gets to dance with Paige on Monday 😉

ETA: Vogue here. Paige was on KTLA today. She talked on Dancing With The Stars and the accident with Mark last week. She also gives a report on Mark and says he’s still trying to find out what’s wrong with him (like Court reported). Right now she’s rehearsing with both Alan and Mark and isn’t sure what will happen on Monday night. More below…

March 31, 2016 I Written By

Ultrasound sales specialist by day, semi-knowledgeable DWTS fan by night...with a smattering of hair & makeup enthusiast, occasional model, baker, 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. Follow me (and my dog!) on Twitter & Instagram: @putuincespence & @BirkinTheBulldog

PureDWTS Season 22: Ben Higgins Confirms He is NOT Doing DWTS, There is No 13th Couple

*shakes head* Normally I wouldn’t even feel the need to post this, but after the last 24 hours or so and some of the nonsense I’ve had to field on Twitter, I feel like it was necessary…

…despite suspicions from some fans that a surprise “13th couple” was getting added to this season’s already stellar lineup, and that Ben Higgins was going to announce this morning on GMA that he was joining the cast, he confirmed to Variety Magazine that he is definitely NOT doing DWTS this season:

Higgins says he will not compete on ABC’s reality dance competition because he wants to focus on his engagement — but he did allude to an offer.

“My focus is not on what’s next. It’s on Lauren and I. Any decision that was made post show was based on what was best for us, and I believe that what’s best for us is to really concentrate on what’s best for us and to really spend as much time together as possible,” Higgins said.

Asked by Variety if he received an actually offer, “The Bachelor” tried to explain, saying, “Right now, a lot of those requests come down through the ABC pipeline so, I don’t want to call it offers, but just people asking if I’m interesting comes down from a group that is separate that me. Was I asked? I’m sure it was talked about.”

However — the couple will be watching “DWTS.” They agreed, “It’s a great cast!”

For once, a Bachelor contestant seems to recognize that doing DWTS immediately after he & his lady go public is maybe not the best thing for their relationship – just ask Chris & Whitney. Kind of refreshing…even if he come across kinda dodgy & redundant saying it 😛

I guess I have to place just a bit of the blame for the hoopla on this picture that Jenna posted on Instagram, though, as it seemed to whip fans into a frenzy, thinking “she got a promo shot, that means she’s a pro!”

9 more days ? #dwts22

A photo posted by Jenna Johnson (@dance10jenna) on


ETA: Oh looky…promo pic of the whole troupe. Makes it a bit less suspicious that Jenna got her own, eh?

Also seeming to incite speculation about a thirteenth couple: the fact that Emma has deleted this post she made last week explaining that she’s taking a season off from the show.  I’m guessing she took it down due to some of the irrational rage from fans in the comments section, as Emma has always done a stellar job of keeping things low-key and drama-free…but of course, some interpreted it as “she took it down because she got a partner after all!”

Apparently pointing out that a) we’ve never had 13 couples in a spring season, b) there were none of the typical smoking guns (subtle-as-a-sledgehammer clues during the cast announcement, pictures taken at McCadden, leaks from other media sources), and c) none of my sources have seen Emma at McCadden for the past 2 weeks, or have heard anything about a 13th couple, makes me a big ol’, spirit-crushing meanie to some on Twitter.  Gosh, facts are so inconvenient sometimes, aren’t they? 😛 Denial is not just a river in Egypt, folks, and I just don’t see the point in indulging some kinda childish fantasies when I know for a fact that there are no more additions to the cast.

So what do I make of all this? I think TPTB were keeping either Emma or Jenna (or even both) in their back pocket, just in case Ben did sign on – the last time we reported, he was waffling pretty heavily.  Could explain why Jenna got a promo shot, and why Emma was seen rehearsing with the cast a few weeks back.  However, as I told another Emma fan on Twitter – Emma’s a smart girl, and I think she may have recognized that potentially getting trouped was both a demotion and a pay cut, and likely not worth her time. She may have said “Y’know what? No thanks, I’ll sit this one out.” Which left Jenna – and then when Ben ended up passing on the offer, they just kept her in the troupe.  This is all speculation on my part, but I think it makes sense.  I don’t think we’ve seen the last of Emma, and I do think Jenna will eventually become a pro – it’s just not happening this season.  It’s already gonna be a bit of a bloodbath, with so many big names this season – if Ben had signed on, I doubt he would have lasted very long, anyway, up against the likes of Antonio, Ginger, Von, etc.

Soooo…can we all agree that this season has 12 couples now? 🙂

March 15, 2016 I Written By

Ultrasound sales specialist by day, semi-knowledgeable DWTS fan by night...with a smattering of hair & makeup enthusiast, occasional model, baker, 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. Follow me (and my dog!) on Twitter & Instagram: @putuincespence & @BirkinTheBulldog