Dancing With the Stars Results: How Do You Judge a 'Dance Duel' With a 47-Year Age Gap?

roshon feganThis week’s Dancing With the Stars results weren’t exactly a huge surprise: R&B legend Gladys Knight, who’d finished at the bottom of the Judges’ Leaderboard, and Disney star Roshon Fegan, second-to-last at the end of Monday night’s Motown-themed performances, found themselves in the Bottom 2 couples.

But here’s where it gets tricky: DWTS instituted a new rule for the midpoint of the competition this season, where the couple with the lowest combined total of judges’ scores and viewer votes doesn’t automatically go home. Instead, last week, this week, and next week, the Bottom 2 couples must participate in a dance duel, with judges Carrie Ann Inaba, Len Goodman, and Bruno Tonioli making the final call on elimination.

So how exactly do you judge a head-to-head jive featuring a game 67-year-old diva and a spry 20-year-old whose day job includes busting moves on his Disney channel series Shake It Up? In my mind, Gladys really shouldn’t have been held to the same standard as Roshon: Some kind of consideration has to be given to the fact that she’s eligible for an AARP card, while Roshon isn’t even old enough to legally grab a beer after rehearsals. In other words, judged without a curve, I understand why Len and Bruno voted to save Roshon, but factoring in that 47-year age difference, and I’d have to agree with Carrie Ann: Gladys deserved to stay.

Ah well, at least we were left with the ridiculously sweet sendoff from Gladys’ pro partner, Tristan MacManus, who said he was going to miss Ms. Knight as much as he misses Ireland during DWTS season.

What do you think? Should DWTS‘ judges factor in contestants’ ages and prior dance experience when they’re coming up with scores? Or are you a believer that the best dances/dancers should rule the day — no matter what? Take our poll below, then hit the comments with your thoughts!

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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27 Comments
  1. Trina says:

    I have admired Chelsie since her so you think you can dance season 4 days and wish I could figure out why the general populace and the judges do not seem to get her!

  2. Kim R says:

    In my opinion, unless they cast “stars” that are all in the same age group, it is what it is. Kirsty was in the higher age bracket and she came in third. And in the same vein, younger celebrities have been horrible dancers (Kate Goselin just to name one). I question the duel aspect more than the age aspect I think. :)

  3. beekeeper's daughter says:

    dump the dance duel, it’s just one way for the judges to make sure their favorites stick around for another week, if they have the final say WHY BOTHER TO VOTE? The seasons have become a joke, the judges have their favorite Pros, and they don’t use the rules for one team to another…dump the judges! It’s time!!

    • Omega says:

      I & all my friends do not like the dance duel! I have voted every season
      but why vote when the judges get the final vote?

    • tim says:

      do you not all get it — you vote so that your favorite is not in the bottom 2 — it’s only for one more week anyways. you guys are being ridiculous

    • jennielyn says:

      Is it just me or is it next to impossible to watch both contestants dancing at the same time?

  4. satsuma says:

    I agree…dump the dance duel….please tell me what is wrong with the couple with the lowest total scores going home? Gladys should never have been put in the position of a dance off with a 20-something. She’s such a lovely, gracious lady. She deserved a better send off.

  5. Deanne says:

    No 68 year old woman is going to dance a jive as well as a 20 year old man. The jive is too quick a dance at times for younger people so you know someone who is elegant and older will have a problem. Roshon is a good dancer and probably should have had another shot but it would have been more equal in teh dance off if it had been between Melissa and Gladys. However, it is what it is.

    • susela says:

      Yes the choice of the jive made it inevitable that Gladys would go. Why didn’t they choose a waltz or a dance that the performers had actually one before?

      • tim says:

        the dance was chosen long before anyone knew who would be in the bottom 2 — all couples prepared for a jive duel.

  6. Richard says:

    It’s a dance competition and we should judge them accordingly to how good they are in dancing whatever genre they are dancing that week. We can’t say…oh this one person has experience in rumba but that doesn’t necessarily mean that he could also do salsa or argentine tango. If you were a chef, it doesn’t mean that you can do a perfect “chicken cacciatore” and at the same time be able to make superb “sushi.” That goes to singing as well. It doesn’t mean that you can do “rap” singing and at the same time do “opera” singing or “ballad” or “motown” etc.

  7. Abby says:

    If they’re going to cast competitors at different ends of the age spectrum, as well as make them “duel” in a dance-off…well, it is what it is. There is no way around the fact that, for the most part, this is a popularity contest. They get judges’ scores, which can be colored by how much the judge likes them. Fans vote, so that’s almost always a popularity contest, based on the skill of people that stick around. And now the judges have a final say. If you’re watching DWTS for just and fair decisions, you’re doing it wrong.

  8. Richard says:

    My point is all of them were picked for this season to dance and whoever is the best dancer should win. Age of a person, the most popular celebrety or having experience in dancing should not be relavant to how the judges judge each contestant. It’s a dancing competition and the judges have to judge them accordingly. Whoever is the best dancer should win.

  9. realitycheck says:

    Love, Love, Love Tristan MacManus.. He quickly became my favorite pro dancer on DWTS.. He has a terrific sense of humor and a wonderful way about him. Gladys was a great partner, but there was little chance of her making it much longer. I hope next season, Tristan gets a partner that will take him to the finals. That is unless he misses Ireland so much, he isn’t back for another season. Nooooo….

  10. amanda says:

    In this instance you need to go with the best dancer. Who has the best chance of winning? I really like Gladys and am very sad to see Tristan go, but she had no chance of winning. The judges on this show already play favorites, I’m just glad 2/3 judges made the right decision.

  11. ceesdotyeah says:

    Let’s not be ridiculous. They don’t get the FINAL say. They choose between two — one of whom would have been going home with or without the dance duel. I do think it’s a pretty silly aspect, but all the other reality shows have a similar rule on result night, so why not give it a try?

    I’d prefer that got rid of the dance marathon myself.

  12. tim says:

    I thought Gladys did a surprisingly good job and I thought it certainly was not a given that roshon would win it. I think they should have chosen gladys because she’s never been in the bottom 2 before and roshon has.

  13. Etta says:

    It’s a *dancing* competition, not *who’s the funniest, charmingest, gracest, etc* competition. It is what it is. I wanted Gavin to stay but I was fine with him leaving since he was worse than Jaleel last week in the dance dual.

  14. Angela says:

    There are people who are older who can do a dance just as well as someone as young as Roshon. I don’t think age was the factor here, I think Gladys just wasn’t cut out for the dance itself. That happens every season on this show, every celebrity runs into a dance that just isn’t meant for them for one reason or another (you may have the occasional rare person who could do every dance flawlessly, but I’ve yet to see that happen in the time I’ve watched).
    Not at all a surprise Gladys went. It’s a shame to see her go, ’cause she was likable and I adore her partner Tristan, but I figured they wouldn’t last too long on here.
    Ah well, at least we were left with the ridiculously sweet sendoff from Gladys’ pro partner, Tristan MacManus, who said he was going to miss Ms. Knight as much as he misses Ireland during DWTS season.
    That was really, really sweet, yes. Made me go, “Awwwwww…” :). And I liked, too, when the judges were complimenting Roshon on his work during the duel, and you saw Gladys and Tristan nodding along in agreement with the compliments and applauding Roshon. Very classy couple, I respect them for that. Wish Gladys well, and hopefully Tristan will be back among the pro dancers again next year and stick around a bit longer.

  15. Chris says:

    It’s about who is the best dancer, not who is the oldest person who dances well for her age but can’t keep up with the younger people. It would be ridiculous to give dancers an advantage because of age. What an absolutely foolish proposition. BTW, I loved Gladys and didn’t like Roshon. I still would have eliminated Gladys based on dance quality.

  16. Angie says:

    I think the dance duel is pointless. Of course Gavin was going to go home last week and of course Gladys couldn’t keep up with Roshon this week. If anything, they should have just let Gladys do a celebratory exit dance. It would have been classier than having the judges pretend to deliberate.

  17. Fairy says:

    This is entirely the wrong question altogether. The question is why should there be a dance duel at all? Why not just stick with the scores & votes formula? The answer is cuz the producers are tired of losing peopel that are good dancers but upopular with viewers. To TIIC, if you don’t like who’s being voted off, then that’s your problem. You create each star’s edit, you put them in the order you want, you have the creative control. You made your bed; lie in it.

  18. Doris says:

    I agree with Fairy – and one other thing – what they shd do is let judges give a critque and not give a score and let the fans vote.

  19. Shaun says:

    Doesn’t matter anyways,Katherine gonna win this thing most likely.

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