It was a rough week for Dancing with the Stars, with a lot of low-lights (twerking, reggaeton) and only one shining highlight. Sam Brooks is here with the week’s power-rankings.
ELIMINATED: Suzy Cato (and Matt) – Samba
This is an absolute travesty. What is going on with this show.
Suzy Cato is not just one of the best and most compelling dancers in this competition, she was the favourite (amongst me, and everybody else, I guess) to win. She’s an icon of the nation in a way that no other contestant is, or will ever be. She’s a core part of so many people’s childhoods – and I can imagine has soothed many a parent through raising their own children. In a country where anybody can become famous, Suzy Cato has remained a true, gracious, and flawless icon. I hope she comes back to TV as soon as possible.
Not only is Suzy Cato one of the better dancers in the competition, but for many people she’s a reason to actually keep watching: she’s by far the most famous person, she’s by far the most beloved, and she’s not an absolute joke like the two men you have to scroll down to see. Her opponent in the dance-off, Shavaughn, had a better dance last night and tonight, but the judges have shot themselves and this entire show in the foot by sending the biggest sell they have packing.
There’s still a competition – but honestly who cares at this point?
999999999. David Seymour (and Amelia) – Merengue
Come on. What the fuck. Send him home. This is beyond embarrassing at this point. Dressing up a politician in high-vis lycra, getting him to twerk and jerk around onstage is ridiculous. Giving him points for working hard – even though he is doing exactly as much work as anybody else, and for so much less result – is absolute bullshit. This isn’t kindergarten! Just because you’re putting in hard work doesn’t make the result any better.
He is a bad dancer! No amount of rehearsal can fix that, and it makes no difference that the show is starting to play into the fact that he’s a bad dancer. Acknowledging your flaws is not the same as addressing them.
I’ll let the judges’ reactions speak for me now:
In lieu of me writing more words about David Seymour, The Spinoff’s resident genius cartoonist Toby Morris has provided this animated gif of the ACT party leader twerking. May god have mercy on all our souls.
SCORE: 15, which is charitable to the point that the judges should be able to write it off on their taxes.
5. Rockin’ Rog (Roger) Farrelly (and Chloe-Ann) – Reggaeton
At least he’s having fun.
4. Jess Quinn (and Johnny) – Paso Doble
Another strong contender who stumbles a little this week. It’s the weakest paso doble of the competition so far, a far cry from what we saw from Marama Fox and Chris Harris, and Quinn can’t quite muster up the passion that the dance needs.
But! Jess Quinn is still one of the strongest contenders in the competition – and compared to the likes of Seymour or Farrelly, who are about as talented at dancing as I am at heterosexuality, she still manages to pull some beautiful shapes and not make an absolute mockery of dancing, television, or the entire human race. So points for that, Jess!
3. Chris Harris (and Vanessa) – Samba
Look, I didn’t think I would come out of this competition being so utterly delighted by former Black Hat Chris Harris. I have been largely immune to the charms of sportspeople who aren’t water polo players (for obvious reasons), ice skaters who have been wronged by Tonya Harding (#JusticeforNancy, but also I’m really #TeamYamaguchi) or steely teenage gymnasts. But, readers, I have been charmed.
Is he the best dancer in this competition? No! Is he the worst? Absolutely not. Is he fun to watch and does he seem like a genuinely nice guy who is not just doing his best, but doing a good job each week? Absolutely yes.
Is this a good samba? I have no idea. I’m Sam Brooks, not Sam Ba. But it’s nice to watch for two minutes and a bit.
It might not be a home run, but it’s good enough for me, Chris Harris.
2. Sam Hayes (and Aaron) – Paso Doble
Holy! This was great. Another weird song choice (Swedish House Mafia and paso doble don’t exactly go together in my mind) from this pair, but Hayes has really settled into this competition. She’s beautiful to watch, and she brings the same magnetism to this that she brings to reading the news.
I have nothing sassy or snarky to say! I enjoyed this a lot! I’ve grown from being dubious of Hayes in this competition – remember that Charleston promo? – to genuinely anticipating her performance every week. In a post-Marama, post-Naz, post-Gilda world, I am both surprised and thankful.
1. Shavaughn (Shav) Ruakere (and Enrique) – Salsa
Yes! This is what I’ve wanted Shav to bring all competition.
Of all the people left in the competition, Shav is definitely the contestant to show the most versatility. She’s given us full drama, she’s given us comedy, she’s given us sexy, and now she’s giving us someone who is genuinely having a great time dancing.
The judges pick up on a lot of flaws in her performance, and for some reason call it her weakest yet, but I’ve never enjoyed watching her more. Even looking beyond the sheer athleticism she shows here, swinging and spinning, she’s laughing and smiling and having fun. It’s the kind of fun we haven’t seen on this stage since Marama left, and for the first time I buy Shav as a legitimate contender and threat to win.
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