DWTS Season 23

Dancing With the Stars Week 7 Recap: Did the Right Couple Go Home?

We’ve reached Week 7 of Dancing With the Stars‘ 23rd season, and you know what that means: It’s become very clear which contestants stand a chance at the Mirrorball… and which ones, well, don’t.

As the remaining couples performed iconic styles from different eras in history, a handful of duos proved exactly why they should be part of the finale in four weeks’ time. The others, unfortunately, struggled to make a convincing pitch for viewers’ precious votes.

Let’s break down the best and worst performances from Eras Night:

BEST OF THE NIGHT
James Hinchcliffe and pro Sharna Burgess (1940s Jitterbug) — I’ve previously been tough on James for his blank facial expressions in the moments when he most needs to act. This week, though, the racecar driver completely embraced the whimsical, nostalgic mood of the dance, transforming himself into a young man believably infatuated with the dazzling Ms. Burgess. He was light on his feet, totally committed to those gasp-inducing somersault lifts and mighty deserving of the closing spot in Monday’s lineup. Judges’ Score: 36/40

BEST OF THE NIGHT (RUNNER-UP)
Calvin Johnson and pro Lindsay Arnold (1950s Jive) — At long last, the NFL pro broke free from the middle of the pack on Monday night, serving up a jive that was both energetic and filled with tricky content that Calvin mastered. What’s more, Calvin ditched his usual “Dancing is a little silly!” expression and, instead of looking sheepish about pulling off goofy choreography, seemed completely at ease with the routine’s upbeat nature. Judges’ Score: 36/40

MOST DISAPPOINTING
Marilu Henner and pro Derek Hough (1920s Charleston) — After delivering magnificent performances two weeks in a row, the former Taxi star seemed to backslide into her tense, anxious ways during the Charleston. Despite her experience with this dance style, thanks to her past gig as Chicago‘s Roxie Hart, Marilu failed to bring the lighthearted playfulness that the Charleston requires. And although Marilu and Derek may not have noticed at the time, they were painfully out-of-sync during the middle of the number, which was only effective if it was properly synchronized. Judges’ Score: 29/40

WORST OF THE NIGHT
Ryan Lochte and pro Cheryl Burke (1990s Rumba) — Even though Maureen and Artem had their fair share of footwork slip-ups, they at least committed to the fierce attitude of their Bon Jovi song. Ryan and Cheryl, on the other hand, turned in a wholly lethargic rumba, even with Aerosmith’s intensely romantic “I Don’t Want to Miss a Thing” helping them out. As the rock ballad reached its peak, I hoped the Olympic swimmer would put some passion into his movements — but everything about this typically sensual style was lazy and uninspired. Judges’ Score: 28/40

And now, your results:

TWO COUPLES IN JEOPARDY
Maureen McCormick and pro Artem Chigvintsev
Jana Kramer and pro Gleb Savchenko

ELIMINATED
Maureen McCormick and pro Artem Chigvintsev

Your turn, Dancing fans! Were Maureen and Artem the right choice for elimination? Who wowed you during Monday night’s broadcast? Leave all of your thoughts in a comment below.