Laney’s Look: The Fans Have Final Say On The “Dancing With The Stars” Champion

Laney's Look: The Fans Have Final Say On The "Dancing With The Stars" Champion (Image 1)

It’s hard to believe that this season of “Dancing With The Stars” is coming to a close. I know I’ve missed a few weeks of writing about the competition, but I’ve definitely been tuned in every week. This has been one of my favorite seasons in awhile too. There has been some really stiff competition, and some truly inspiring dances.

I know that normally I break down the dances and my thoughts, but this post is going to be a little different. Instead of doing that I’m going to share my thoughts on the final three stars. Most people probably believe that Riker Lynch, Nastia Luikin, and Rumor Willis deserved to go to the finals. I won’t say that they are wrong. As much as I adore Noah Galloway, and have been rooting for him all season, technically he isn’t the best dancer. Nastia consistently scored higher than him. However, that’s not to say that Noah doesn’t deserve to be in the finals.

At the end of the day, I think what probably held Nastia back from winning over the fans – because that’s what her elimination came down to considering she scored at the top of the leader board – was a connection. I don’t think viewers felt a connection with her. She even admitted that showing emotion was something new to her. Her upbringing and profession had her keeping emotions under wraps. That works as an Olympic gymnast, however, dance is about emotions and stories. As beautifully as she danced, there wasn’t a connection.

On the opposite side of the spectrum, Noah has had America cheering for him. His story is powerful, and you can’t help but find yourself cheering for him to succeed – just as I’m sure many of us were in tears when he dropped to his knee to propose to his girlfriend during the semi-finals. Is Noah the smoothest dancer on the dance floor? No. Can he do all of the tricks that other dancers can do? No. Can he do what he does well? Yes. He has worked hard, and Sharna has worked hard to work with his limitations. There have been times watching Noah dance where I have actually been able to forget that he has any limitations, and you can see him enjoying himself out there. I think America fell in love with him.

Riker has been a surprise. Early on I really didn’t see him making it to the finals. He’s definitely shown that he has a great deal of range and is extremely talented. If I’m completely honest, though, he’s not one of my favorites. That has nothing to do with talent. Just as I talked about people not being able to develop a connection with Nastia, I’ve never been able to develop a connection with Riker. Nastia I connected with because of this “bond” from watching her in the Olympics. I never really shared a “bond” with Riker, despite being a fan of “Glee”. Honestly, I couldn’t even remember his character and had to look him up. Beyond all of that, though, Riker is a great performer and a real contender for the trophy.

All season Rumor has been my personal favorite – which came as a surprise because I honestly didn’t expect to like her when she was announced as one of the celebrities. From the first time I watched her dance, though, I have been a fan, and I’ve been cheering for her all season. Often times I’ve sat yelling at the judges’ because I didn’t feel they scored her as high as she deserved. Every time she steps on the dance floor you can see just how much she loves this competition. I think many people watching have seen that passion and have become fans of her as a result.

So who is going to walk away with the golden mirrorball trophy? Your guess is as good as mine. I’m not even going to pretend that I have any clue. I think Noah will come in second place. That is my one prediction that I feel pretty strongly about. Rumor is who I want to see win, and I will be voting every possible way Monday night for her. At the end of the day, though, it really will come down to the fans. Scores won’t decide the winner of the season. The fans will.

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