Dancing Lowdown: What Did Hope Solo Do Wrong on DWTS?
Credit: Adam Taylor/ABC Television Group © 2011 Disney    
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Dancing With The Stars

Dancing Lowdown: What Did Hope Solo Do Wrong on DWTS?

It just wasn’t their year to win. Hope Solo almost won the World Cup over the summer and Maksim Chmerkovskiy almost won Dancing With the Stars Season 12 last spring, but the dream team just wasn’t meant to go all the way on DWTS Season 13.

What went wrong for them? A lot. The fact that they made the Semifinals at all is a testament to their unwavering fan support, because Team MakSolo’s DWTS journey did not go the way most of us expected. Let’s review.

They didn’t have the scores
Hope said the judges wanted her gone from Week 1 but — if they ever really wanted her to leave — it probably started on Week 2.

On Week 1 they got a respectable score of 21 for their Viennese Waltz. Len Goodman said Hope needed to be more soft and feminine, which some people interpreted as an insult, but many, many celebs have gotten that comment over the years, whether they were athletes or just stiff and nervous for the premiere. But that seemed to start something.

Week 2 was the first time Hope and Maks were the first couple to dance — never the place you want to be — and they got a low score of 19. After that, they got three straight weeks of 24, which seemed to annoy them because — well, because all criticism annoyed them, but also because it didn’t show improvement and they felt they were being underscored.

Everything changed on Week 6, which was also The Broadway Brawl. They got a different score that week — a 20. After that, they went up and down — including a high of 27 for their Week 8 Quickstep — but they were never consistent like the other couples.

Fair or not (and from here their marks were pretty fair across the season, including times when the judges were too nice to them out of fear), their scores looked like an EKG that definitely flatlined on Week 9 when they were the lowest-scoring couple for the first time all season. That was enough to send them home.

Dancing Lowdown: What Did Hope Solo Do Wrong on DWTS?
Credit: Adam Taylor/ABC Television Group © 2011 Disney    

Too much drama, too much attitude
Maks hand-picked Hope for this season and she seemed like a great choice. Gorgeous athlete in her prime? We thought they would go all the way to the finals. But maybe putting two headstrong, passionate, ultra-competitive and extremely sensitive people together just isn’t the best idea for DWTS.

Hope and Maks took the show so seriously as a competition that even they admitted — by Week 7 — that they lost sight of the fun, entertainment factor. Maks challenged the judges on grounds of favoritism, which a lot of fans applauded.

But then Maks took a shot at fellow pro Derek Hough for siding with the judges and felt compelled to do tabloid damage control, insisting he and Derek don’t really hate each other.

Then Maks was too rough with Hope during Team Paso Doble practice and even Hope said she almost quit that week. They calmed down and were happy for one full week — perhaps because the judges loved their dances — but then on the Semifinals it was back to chip-on-shoulder drama: Carrie Ann Inaba commented on Maks’ smile, Hope commented on Carrie Ann’s comment and the judges seemed ready to be done with the couple.

And that was all just on Monday. On Tuesday’s Results Show, we saw more behind-the-scenes sniping. In the confessionals, Hope told the judges (through the camera) to kiss her booty for giving her a “7” for her Paso Doble. After their Argentine Tango, she told Maks she didn’t even want to look at the judges. “F--k ‘em,” they both said. Meanwhile, Len was confused, telling his fellow judges, “The thing is, we were nice.” They were certainly a lot nicer than they could’ve been.

There just always seemed to be something for Hope and Maks to get upset about every single week and that much negativity didn’t exactly win the couple new voters, beyond their hardcore Team MakSolo fan base.

It was just time to go
Look who they were up against — the season’s presumed frontrunners from Week 1, J.R. Martinez and Ricki Lake, and Rob Kardashian, who has steadily improved each week, all while keeping his gigantic Kardashian fan base in his back pocket. (Maybe that’s why his butt is so big.) The only way Hope and Maks were going to make the finale is if they finally topped the judges’ leaderboard in the semifinals. That did not happen, since their dances were not the best of the week. Were they underscored? It’s always going to be subjective. You could argue they didn’t deserve to have the lowest Cha-Cha Relay score, but two extra points probably would not have saved them in the end.

Parting words
It was down to Hope and Maks. vs. J.R. and Karina as “not necessarily the bottom two.” Brooke Burke-Charvet asked Hope how proud she was of herself. “This competition is one of the toughest competitions I’ve ever been a part of. I’m grateful. It was an amazing opportunity.” She thanked her friends and family and fans — “we have the most amazing fan base,” she said, adding, “You know what, I’m going to go back and try instead of winning the Mirror Ball trophy I’m going to try and win a gold medal.” Maks told Hope, “Thank you for determination and the will and everything else and I’m sorry — I wish I could’ve been better for you, but it is what it is. It’s been an amazing journey.” Hope added “Maks was amazing. The producer of the show! I have to thank you, Maks, for casting me on your show.” Ha! Maks also thanked the fans, “the fans are what made the show and they’re incredible.”

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