Laney’s Look: Latin Night Lights Up The “Dancing With The Stars” Ballroom

Laney's Look: Latin Night Lights Up The "Dancing With The Stars" Ballroom (Image 1)

Latin night in the “Dancing With The Stars” ballroom always proves to be interesting. For me that always seems to be the night where the competition heats up. The nerves of the first couple of weeks are gone, and the celebrities have a taste for the competition and what it is going to take to win.

Monday night was no exception. There were some hits and some misses. My main complaint of the evening was in regards to the judges’ scores. Their comments and critiques did not line up with their scoring. They also, in my opinion, are showing some favoritism. I yelled at my television several times over the course of the show.

Here’s my take on how the stars did.

Rumor Willis (Salsa) – Every week Rumor simply blows me away. She blends right in with the professionals. She is absolutely fearless on the dance floor. To me she is the clear front runner. For some reason the judges are not increasing her scores, and I don’t understand why, especially in comparison to some of the other celebrities. Judges’ Scores: 8-9-8-8

Charlotte McKinney (Rumba) – There was a lot of promise with this dance, but as you know by now if you’ve followed me over the seasons – Rumba is my favorite dance. Charlotte’s performance was just lacking some of the sensual flow. It wasn’t horrible. I didn’t think it was as bad as the judges’ scored it, but it was lacking that romance. Judges’ Scores: 6-5-5-6

Michael Sam (Salsa) – I really like Michael and his enthusiasm when he dances. He simply makes me smile. This week wasn’t my favorite performance from him. A lot of it just felt awkward. It didn’t have the flow that he normally has. He has the ability to do better than this performance. Judges’ Scores: 6-6-6-6

Riker Lynch (Salsa) – The judges and I were once more on a different page when it came to Riker. Everyone, other than Len, gave him high scores. While he gave a solid performance, I didn’t think it was as phenomenal as they made it out to be. I was much more impressed by him last week. Judges’ Scores: 9-7-9-9

Suzanne Somers (Salsa) – I see Suzanne improving a little each week. She still has a way to go and seems a little tentative still. She’s having fun, but she doesn’t seem secure in the steps. Personally, I don’t think she’ll last much longer in the competition. Judges’ Scores: 6-6-6-7

Chris Soules (Argentine Tango) – The Chris that I enjoyed watching in week one was back Monday night. He gave a commendable performance with the Tango. My main criticism is that some of his steps were too staccato and didn’t flow like they should. Otherwise I enjoyed the performance. Judges’ Scores: 7-7-7-7

Robert Herjavec (Rumba) – Robert is the one celebrity that has completely taken me by surprise this season. Every week he just shows another side of himself, and I’m so completely impressed. He has some real talent that goes beyond the boardroom. The only thing that really bothered me during his performance – which one of the judges mentioned – was his arms. Sometimes they were just too stiff. Otherwise it was an amazing performance that I thought was scored too low. Judges’ Scores: 7-7-8-7

Patti LaBelle (Cha-Cha) – What is there not to love about Patti? She goes out there every week and truly entertains. I actually have to side with the judges’ on her performance last night. While it was good and clean, it was bordering on safe. While the other stars are stepping it up, she’s staying about the same. She needs to step it up to stay in the game. Judges’ Scores: 6-5-5-6

Willow Shields (Paso Doble) – The Paso is probably one of my least favorite dances. Every now and then someone will blow me away with a performance of it. Willow did a really great job with the dance. It’s so easy to forget how young she is when she performs. She has amazing presence. Judges’ Scores: 8-8-8-8

Noah Galloway (Argentine Tango) – Noah never ceases to amaze me. I was really curious how he would handle a dance like the Argentine Tango since it was his first performance that required being in hold. I know that using the prosthetic arm could’ve been beneficial but I’m glad that Sharna didn’t push for him to do it when he was obviously so uncomfortable with it. On a whole, the performance showed amazing strength, and Sharna put so much trust in him to do the lifts they executed. I truly admire them and their partnership. Judges’ Scores: 7-7-8-8

Nastia Luikin (Samba) – I never had any doubt that Nastia would be amazing in the ballroom, and each week she’s proven herself. This week’s Samba was bouncy and fun. She pairs perfectly with Derek. The two of them simply work well together, and I can see them going all the way in this competition. Judges’ Scores: 9-8-9-8

I wasn’t at all surprised to see Charlotte eliminated from the competition this week. From the very beginning I didn’t think that she had the fan base to keep her in the competition, and I don’t think she ever created a connection with the viewers to earn her the needed votes.

Since Monday night I’ve been contemplating who will be the next person to exit the ballroom. Two weeks in a row, Chris has been pulled down during the elimination, however, it’s also been stated that those pulled down weren’t necessarily in the bottom. Personally, I don’t think he’s been in the bottom. I think he has more fan support than that. With that being said, I don’t think he’ll be the next person to leave. My prediction for the next person to go is Suzanne. I just don’t think she has the scores or fan base to keep her in.

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