DWTS Bindi Irwin Dirty Dancing Lift

Dancing With the Stars Week 6 Recap: Did the Right Couple Go Home?

Just about every performer on Monday’s episode of Dancing With the Stars had mighty big shoes to fill.

Andy Grammer had to perfect dance steps first made famous by Gene Kelly. Bindi Irwin had to master that lift from Dirty Dancing. Heck, even DWTS alumna Leah Remini had to take Erin Andrews’ place as this week’s sideline reporter — and boy, did she make Alexa PenaVega angry.

All things considered, though, the remaining competitors on Dancing’s 21st season rose to the occasion as they re-imagined famous dances in pop culture history, from John Travolta’s Saturday Night Fever hip thrusts to Channing Tatum’s Magic Mike striptease.

Before we get to the results, let’s break down five of the evening’s most note-worthy routines:

BEST OF THE NIGHT
Tamar Braxton and pro Val Chmerkovskiy (Jazz, Janet Jackson’s “Rhythm Nation”) — Tamar’s flawless footwork would have been enough to warrant a perfect score on Monday; the fact that she also lip-synced Janet Jackson’s lyrics for the entire performance was merely icing on the cake. Tamar was so committed to the jazz routine, in fact, that I nearly forgot she was an amateur performing among a gaggle of pros. Judges’ Score: 40/40

BEST OF THE NIGHT (RUNNER-UP)
Andy Grammer and pro Allison Holker (Jazz, Singin’ in the Rain) — As recently as two weeks ago, I would not have expected Andy to master such an intricate Gene Kelly homage — with a smile, at that! But the “Honey, I’m Good” singer managed to build on his momentum from last week’s Switch-Up, turning in a performance that was energetic, nostalgic and practically perfect. Judges’ Score: 40/40

LOOSEST INTERPRETATION OF THE DANCE STYLE
Carlos PenaVega and pro Witney Carson (Rumba, Magic Mike) — For all the hoopla surrounding the alleged awkwardness of Carlos and Witney’s routine, their rumba was still the most smoldering dance of the night by far. Unfortunately, I’m not sure it can actually be called a rumba, seeing as Witney was only on stage for about 60 percent of the routine. (Not that I’m complaining, though. Carlos’ body rolls would even have made Playing House’s Maggie jealous.) Judges’ Score: 38/40

MOST AMBITIOUS
Bindi Irwin and pro Derek Hough (Rumba, Dirty Dancing) — If that iconic Patrick Swayze/Jennifer Grey lift weren’t already a tall order to fill, Bindi and Derek did nothing to allay our (or each other’s) nerves in their pre-performance video package. (Derek, you’re not supposed to say that you don’t specialize in lifts!) Fortunately, even though Derek didn’t look like the sturdiest companion as he raised Bindi above his head, they managed to pull off the move under immense pressure. (After all, Johnny and Baby had weeks to practice!) Judges’ Score: 40/40

WORST OF THE NIGHT
Paula Deen and pro Louis van Amstel (Jazz, Madonna’s “Vogue” at the 1990 MTV VMAs) — Let me be clear: If I never have to watch Paula shove a male dancer’s face into her cleavage again, it will be too soon. (And whether or not she was channeling Madonna this week, let’s not pretend this is the first time Paula has gotten uncomfortably sexual with one of her dance partners.) Unfortunately, even without the motorboating incident, the routine consisted of little more than Paula getting pulled across the dance floor by the men. Oh, and hand motions. Lots and lots of hand motions. Judges’ Score: 24/40

TWO COUPLES IN JEOPARDY
Paula Deen and pro Louis van Amstel
Alexa PenaVega and pro Mark Ballas

ELIMINATED
Paula Deen and pro Louis van Amstel

OK, your turn. Were you happy to see Paula and Louis get the boot? Which Famous Dances routine stood out the most? Hit the comments!

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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40 Comments
  1. Mmtp777 says:

    This is the first year I remember where the bad dancers were actually eliminated first! I’m so happy!!

    • Rebecca says:

      Agreed! The end of the season is actually going to be kind of tense and interesting!

      • Angela says:

        Yeah, it is :D! So many of them were really good last night (namely everyone mentioned in the recap), so I’m genuinely curious to see who’s going to be duking it out in the coming weeks.
        As for Paula, all I’ll say is seeing her do a Madonna routine was really weird.

    • sanchopanza says:

      At last we have a competition! I had no real doubt that Paula would go home, but you never know. Now we can focus on the very real radical improvements in all the others. I’m disappointed that Alek seems to be slowing down, and Hayes isn’t killing it when others suddenly are. What surprises me is Nick Carter not quite getting there when he has plenty of talent and experience. I’m not rooting for him, but it seems like he’d be doing better.

  2. TT says:

    I wouldn’t say that I’m happy that Paula is gone, but I think she is the most logical one to go at this stage of the competition. I hope she had fun.

  3. m3rissa says:

    Did Derek and Bindi dance ‘Dirty Dancing’ pretty perfectly? Yes, they got all the important elements in there (although that lift was a little shaky)and it looked great. However that was not a rumba!!! It had very few rumba elements and if anyone else had done that dance they would have been called out for it.

    • Lily says:

      Definitely! Bindi’s feet left the floor four times. That should have been four docked points from Carrie Ann.

      • Matt Smith says:

        But her partner is Derek and the rules never really apply to him.

      • In defense of the feet leaving the floor, I will say that I believe that rule was our simply due to the recreation of the dances requirement. Can’t have that dance without the big life at least.

      • Lisa says:

        Why? It was iconic week and the producers REQUIRED Bindi and Derek to do the lift and recreate the dance and use signature moves. Its funny you call them out that they should have been docked points when this whole season a few of the couples have had lifts and Carrie Ann has not called them out. You also seem to forgot Bindi’s feet did not touch the ground in one of her earlier dances and was called out. She has been the only one this whole season who was docked points by Carrie Ann for “lifts”.

  4. Arnold says:

    Again, since Derek got another young celebrity, obviously it’s a lot easier to get a high score. Plus everyone knows a sister judge always be bias. These judges never like Mark Ballas because prior years incident. Bindi didn’t do much on that dance. Carlos and Nick should have gotten perfect score if you have to compare with Derek’s choreography if Bindi’s dance. Favoritism is starting to creep up again on Derek.

    • Rebecca says:

      I actually think Mark has redeemed himself in recent years- he was wonderful with Sadie a couple of seasons ago and his material with Willow last year was really fun too (that Mad Hatter routine was especially memorable.) I don’t think he’s really clicking with Alexa- that routine should have put her front and center being sexy as hell (like Witney did with Carlos) and instead it was kind of just meh. He’s done much better in years past (or even this year with their Breaking Bad routine.)

    • Chris says:

      I’m becoming less and less of a fan of mark ballas– he is becoming too nasty and unlikeable.

      • Terry says:

        Agreed. Him muttering to Derek that Alexa didn’t care after she missed the final few steps. What did he want her to do? Breakdown and start balling like a baby? It’s not like she intentionally f’d up. What’s wrong with laughing it off and staying positive and moving on?!?

      • RUCookie says:

        Funny – I actually find myself liking Mark more the last few seasons. I despised his “its all about me” choreography in the beginning.

    • Steph says:

      What incident with Mark?

  5. Denise says:

    I enjoyed watching all the dances, but I personally truly enjoyed the most was Alek & Lindsey’s dance to Jailhouse Rock. I’m sorry Paula & Louis were eliminated. She was quite entertaining to watch every week.

  6. Donna Spilis says:

    I don’t know the fine points of dancing but was surprised the judges gave Bindi 10’s when I didn’t think her arms looked nice at all in the lift. This week I thought Carrie Ann especially was hard on Alexa and Alek. I didn’t care for his Elvis but thought he was better than the scores he received and very expressive. Sometimes it feels like they don’t the professionals. Whoever Tamar danced with last week the eye contact was wonderful. She just doesn’t seem to be able to look in Val’s eyes. Too bad.

  7. Mytake says:

    I’m so glad Paula finally got sent packing. Her pre dance packages and her dances made me cringe every week. Not only was she incredibly bad (and it doesn’t have to do with age, many older dancers on the show could at least move to the beat) but her inappropriate sexual actions and leers towards the males wasn’t at all lighthearted or funny, it was just plain sleezy.

  8. L McDonald says:

    There is too much bias in favor of Derek and Bindi which is very obvious. Higher scores should go to Alek. NEW Judges are in order.

  9. Jake says:

    Starting next week, I’m not sure who will go home. I love Hayes, Andy and nick and bindi.

  10. Bob says:

    I was very pleased at the results.

  11. Mallory says:

    oohh what happened with Leah and Alexa?

  12. shar says:

    My favorite dance of the night was Nick and Sharna. He was amazing doing John Travolta.

  13. diane says:

    Yes but can you Please do us all a favor. Stop having these Kids on here. It is to the point, where I am getting sick of the show. That Bindi Please she is as sicking as her father. And that boy who is he.

    • Tabby says:

      First of all, if you’re going to start insulting the dancers, the least you could do is use proper grammar and spelling? What the heck is sicking? And you shouldn’t capitalize words in the middle of a sentence. Second of all, how in the heck is Bindi or her father sickening(I’m assuming that is the word that you meant to use)? Her father was an amazing animal conservationist who loved helping animals and Bindi is just like her father and has an amazing spirit. Third of all, the whole point of DWTS is to have a wide variety of celebrities and ones of all ages, I mean almost all of the pro dancers are young as well!

    • Pammy says:

      I’m glad that you are getting sick of the show. Now you can turn off the TV and stop watching.

  14. Brenda Wingate says:

    The right one went home finally! Glad people or voting for the dancing and not just on popularity. Last nights show was awesome…LOVED Derek and Bindi and Tamar with Rythmn Nation! Actually I loved them all but Paula!

  15. carol green says:

    Yes, Paula should have been eliminated way before this. For her age, she did o.k but her constant chattering, etc. just turned me off. Was glad to see her voted off as there were others that were far better than her. Additionally, Bindi & Derek’s dance from Dirty Dancing was spectacular. However, it fell short with the music that was played. Why isn’t the orchestra playing the correct music to go along with the dances these people are doing? I just get so frustrated and read while it is on. This whole show has changed over the years and unfortunately, not for the better. Someone needs to tell that orchestra leader to play the proper music. It’s like doing the Jive to a waltz that they would play…..not good.

  16. RUCookie says:

    Heck YES the right one got voted off… But the big problems comes now…. who is the front runner? There was A LOT of 10s last night and a case can be made for many of them to win. Wonder if judging gets harder now? It might need to be, because giving them all 10s for the rest of the season will not work. It might also be nice if they all had the same type of dance one week… we could really compare.

  17. Personally, after watching her dance the first night, I was greatly surprised she was not eliminated right then and there. I just chalked it up to she must be “paying the show to keep until the next week” (or something like that). She lacked rhythm and grace and she just did not have the “IT” factor. I will have to admit the competition this season has been extremely competitive thus another reason why I felt she should have been eliminated after the first week. She should not complain about the judges. They are tough on everyone and with that much competition that IS what they are there to do isn’t it???

  18. Elvira says:

    I am rooting for the 2 Latinos! , Carlos & Alexa!! I am rooting for Nick and Andy, these people are all good dancers. Paula did great for a woman her age . Bindi should have got a 30, her dance was alright. Julianne shows clear favoritism for Derek, not fair!!!!!! I’d like to see john travolta be a guest judge.

  19. ABSOLUTELY – I was shocked that Paula stayed as long as she did. No rhythm, no dancing talent, and was awkward even just walking across the room. I am not trying to be mean or anything but it is what it is! I just have NO idea what Dancing with the Stars was thinking when they invited her to join this year. WAYYYY better performers still waiting to be approached. The level of talent this week was above what I have normally witnessed watching this show. WHY waste one minute on Paula Dean – she was just taking up space on the show from the very first week.

  20. marilyn neff says:

    Very dissappointing to see a professional TV program like DWTS have to tolerate someone as unprofessional like Paula Seen. Unfortunately, when it’s LIVE TV that’s what you deal with. Felt sorry for the Pro Dancer who had to put up w/Paula. Louis is a sweetheart. I certainly think less of Paula after more than one of her vocal antics.

  21. marilyn neff says:

    Very dissappointing to see a professional TV program like DWTS have to tolerate someone as unprofessional like Paula Deen. Unfortunately, when it’s LIVE TV that’s what you deal with. Felt sorry for the Pro Dancer who had to put up w/Paula. Louis is a sweetheart. I certainly think less of Paula after more than one of her vocal antics.

  22. ann says:

    SOOOO HAPPPY to see Paula Dean leave could not watch her when she came on. She is very annoying!!!!! Her & Kim & Kayne. Tired of seeing them.