Dancing Lowdown: What Did Nancy Grace Do Wrong on DWTS?
Was the “devil” that judge Len Goodman spotted last week back on stage last night? Nancy Grace and her Cinderella pumpkin carriage left the ballroom onDancing With the StarsSeason 13, Week 8 in a not-too-surprising elimination just before the semifinals. But why now instead of any other week when she had the lowest scores? Wave your magic wand and read on...
Her scores were really low: The point spread is key. If, say, the top score of the week had been 50 out of 60, with everyone else in the 40-something zone, Nancy and Tristan MacManus’ two-dance score of 44 out of 60 might have been considered safe. Maybe. But the scoring system is complicated. It’s important to note the “share” of points given by the judges on the night. ABC calculates the "share" as the percentage of the total number of points awarded to all contestants that evening. (For example, if a pair earned 20 points on a night when the judges awarded 200 points, their judges' share would be 20/200 = 10%.)
Especially compared to a perfect score: When J.R. Martinez and Karina Smirnoff got a score of 60 out of 60 — and everyone else got at least 51 or over — it put Nancy and Tristan in a pretty difficult position. They had to have one helluva voting rally to overcome that low share percentage and, unfortunately, everyone else’s fan bases are just as huge.
It was her time: Len may have been harsh to put it so bluntly, but it WAS midnight in DWTS Nation and it WAS time for Nancy to go home. There was very little she could do. Their Tango was pretty good but their Instant Jive was nothing to be proud of — it deserved that low score of 20, and on Week 8 that’s just not OK.
The competition: Look who they were up against — J.R. and Karina were untouchable thanks to their perfect scores and his status as one of the most popular people in the country right now. (Hey, he was on the cover of People Magazine!) Ricki Lake and Derek Hough were underscored for their Jive and their fans weren’t going to let them go home for it. A Ricki vs. J.R. showdown is already in the books so it just has to happen. (Unless Rob and Hope can pull an upset and push Ricki out of the way?)
Rob Kardashian has the Kardashian empire voting for him. Having him as the second worst scoring celeb is no help to you if you are in Nancy’s spot. Hope Solo and Maksim Chmerkovskiy’s fans should be running political campaigns, they just get stuff done. No matter the ups or downs, they are like Occupy Phone Lines activists. As much as fans adored The Bickersons banter between Nancy and Tristan, it was never going to be enough after a certain point. This was that point.
Parting words: It came down to Nancy and Tristan vs. Rob and Cheryl Burke as “not necessarily the bottom two.” After Nancy’s name was called, Brooke Burke-Charvet asked how she was feeling. “I am so proud but I really cannot take the credit,” Nancy said. “You know what, it’s been all Tristan from the get-go.”
He finally got the credit! Nancy went on to thank the whole crew at DWTS, her family who flew out to L.A. with the twins so she could dance. “And especially to you, Tris. Thank you.” So sweet. Tristan said it’s all paid off now. He thanked everyone for being welcoming to him and Nancy. “We’ve really, really had a fun time and it’s the support that we get from you all that really pushes us out [to work hard]. We can’t be disappointed to make it this far. I think from the start we’ve always said to each other it’s not about being the best it’s just about doing your best. And I think that’s what we did and that’s why we’re very happy.” Well said!
After the show: Nancy told On the Red Carpet that she reached many goals beyond making it so far on the show. Tristan said she's been a great example to others, and that he would love to come back for another season of DWTS. We'll keep our fingers crossed. For now, they are focused still on this season. They'll be back for the finale, which is only in a couple of weeks. When told a lot of folks were surprised to learn that Nancy was funny, Tristan quipped, "That was all scripted. I used to feed her jokes in the morning."
Nancy said the show was a great release for her since "there's not a lot of chance for humor when you're talking about missing children or unsolved homicides... I don't think one day went by that Tristan and I did not laugh at something." She said she hopes to continue dancing. "And I hope Tristan continues to practice law." Ha! These two should take it on the road.