ABC(LOS ANGELES) — Actor Antonio Sabato Jr. and his professional partner, Cheryl Burke, were eliminated on ABC’s Dancing with the Stars Monday.
The actor said his time on the show meant the world to him. “I was able to dance with one of the best dancers in the world,” he said, referring to Burke. “She’s a friend of mine a part of my family right now,” Sabato added.
Burke said she was proud of the actor. “This had been one of the most memorable seasons for me for so many reasons and it’s just so sad for me to say goodbye…”
“I just had the most amazing time with you and I’m so proud of you,” Burke told Sabato.
Monday’s show was a “spooktacular” event in which the eight remaining couples performed an individual Halloween-themed routine in addition to a competitive team dance. The couples were split into two teams, Team Creepy and Team Itsy Bitsy.
The couple with the lowest combined total of judges’ scores and viewer votes is eliminated each week.
The evening also featured performances of spooky-sounding singles. Ella Henderson sang “Ghost” and Nikki Yanofsky performed “Necessary Evil.”
Here’s a rundown of the individual routines:
Tommy Chong: The 76-year-old comedian had trouble with his knees during rehearsal, but his quickstep earned high praise from the judges. Chong, the oldest star to make it this far in the competition in the show’s history, did well when he danced in hold with his partner Peta Murgatroyd but the routine “went a bit wrong” once they were apart, judge Bruno Tonioli said. Judge Len Goodman — back on the panel after several weeks’ absence — commended Chong. “I tell you what Tommy, you’re very easy on the eye, you’re very watchable, there’s a charm about you that I love. Well done,” he said. Judge Julianne Hough agreed that Chong was light on his feet, and while judge Carrie Ann Inaba said she thought this was Chong’s best routine of the entire season, she said she had to deduct points because the performance at times was out of sync with the music. Chong earned four 7s for a total of 28 out of a possible 40 points.
Lea Thompson: The judges told the actress her Argentine tango was precise but she had been stressed over doing a good job and Hough told her to give herself and her pro partner Artem Chigvintsev a break. “Don’t forget the fun of it,” Hough urged. Goodman said it was clean and precise, but added: “For me, it lacked a little bit of chemistry.” Tonioli said the routine was “efficient, accurate” with great shapes and “just the right touch of evil.” Thompson earned two 8s and two 9s for a total of 34 points.
Bethany Mota: The YouTube star’s theatrical paso doble — complete with drummers on the ballroom floor — earned her rave reviews from the judges. Tonioli called it a paso doble “painted on a grand, operatic scale” adding that Mota and her pro partner, Derek Hough, “were the embodiment of the flame of passion. Absolutely fantastic!” Inaba said Mota continued to rise to the occasion, saying her performance was “flawless.” Goodman said the performance was spectacular, but noted that, for him, the routine got lost in the high production value of the number. “I want to just see a paso doble,” he said. While Julianne Hough agreed that the routine was highly produced, she said it didn’t overshadow Mota. Judges gave Mota three 10s and a 9 for a total of 39 points.
Antonio Sabato Jr.: The actor’s Viennese Waltz failed to impress the judges. Goodman called the effort “a bit hectic at times,” adding that the performance was OK. Inaba said she was “frustrated” with the actor because, even though he’d grown as a dancer, his waltz never felt smooth. “It makes me uncomfortable to watch you,” she said. Hough said she wanted to see Sabato improve, but said that this week, “everything was kind of off.” The actor earned a six and three 7s for a total of 27 points.
Michael Waltrip: The NASCAR driver has struggled throughout the competition, and in the rehearsals leading up to Monday’s jive he worried that he wouldn’t be able to deliver the quick kicks required of the style. Those fears were realized, and the judges didn’t hold back. In keeping with the Halloween theme of the night, the performance was “a nightmare,” Hough said. Goodman expressed his surprise that Waltrip had made it to week 7 of the competition. “In driving terms, you’re running on empty now…you did your best but it really wasn’t good enough,” he said. Tonioli said there was no jive in the routine, adding that he thinks Waltrip broke the record for being out of sync with the music. Added Inaba: “I want you to do better, but this was a great freestyle. It was supposed to be a jive, so that’s the sad part.” Waltrip earned four 5s for a total of 20 points.
Janel Parrish: The Pretty Little Liars actress’ campy Viennese Waltz with partner Valentin Chmerkovskiy drew mixed reviews from the judges. Hough thought the Halloween theme overshadowed Parrish’s performance while Tonioli liked the number but said Parrish needed to be more careful how she completed her movements. Inaba disagreed, saying she thought Parrish’s movements were fluid but said the actress needed to point her toes. Goodman added: “For me it was a lovely, fluid dance but there was no Viennese Waltz.” Parrish earned one 7 and three 8s for a total of 31 points.
Alfonso Ribeiro: The actor and his pro partner, Witney Carson, turned in a rumba that the judges hailed for its technical accuracy. Tonioli called the routine “captivating” and “full of content,” but cautioned Ribeiro to watch his foot action. Inaba was impressed by the “integrity” of the routine, saying: “the magic is happening.” Goodman appeared gratified that the dancers didn’t spend too much time on props or extraneous activity leading into the routine. “It was a proper rumba,” he said. Ribeiro earned four 9s for a total of 36 points, and he also took time to wish his son a happy first birthday. The actor then announced that he and his wife were expecting another baby.
Sadie Robertson: The judges felt that the Duck Dynasty star’s zombie-themed paso doble with partner Mark Ballas fell a little flat. Repeating a critique that they leveled throughout the show, the judges said they thought the Halloween theme overshadowed the performance. Inaba said the character Robertson played didn’t fit with the style of the dance, and Goodman said the theme got in the way. Hough said the theme was a bit overwhelming but added that she saw true paso doble content. She urged Robertson to work on finishing her moves. Tonioli said he loved the story but noted that Robertson needed to work on her shaping. The judges awarded Robertson two 7s and two 8s for a total of 30 points.
The Team Dances:
Each team member had the group’s score added to his or her individual score. Team Creepy featured Ribeiro, Chong, Robertson, Sabato Jr., and their respective partners. The judges said the team’s routine was unique but faulted the members for being out of sync when they danced as a group. The team earned four 8s for a total of 32 points.
Team Itsy Bitsy featured Mota, Parrish, Thompson and Waltrip, along with their respective partners. Their hip-hop inspired freestyle was uniformly praised by the judges. “It was a great routine and you danced it beautifully. Well done,” Goodman said. Hough said the routine was “awesome,” and Tonioli added that the dancers “killed that number.” Inaba singled out Waltrip — who had missed some of the routine’s rehearsal — telling him he “looked fabulous.” The team earned 36 points.
The Scores (Couple’s dance; Group dance. Total out of 80):
- Bethany Mota and Derek Hough: 39; 36. Total: 75
- Alfonso Ribeiro and Witney Carson: 36; 32. Total: 68
- Lea Thompson and Artem Chigvintsev: 34; 36. Total: 70
- Janel Parrish and Valentin Chmerkovskiy: 31; 36. Total: 67
- Sadie Robertson and Mark Ballas: 30; 32. Total: 62
- Tommy Chong and Peta Murgatroyd: 28; 32. Total: 60
- Antonio Sabato Jr. and Cheryl Burke: 27; 32. Total: 59
- Michael Waltrip and Emma Slater: 20; 36. Total: 56
Dancing with the Stars returns next Monday at 8 p.m. Eastern time on ABC.
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