Maksim Chmerkovskiy May Not Return to DWTS Without Serious Production Changes
Dancing With the Stars pro Maksim Chmerkovskiy has never been shy with his opinion about the show. Every season he shares frustrations with the judges, the scores, the rehearsal packages, the producers' added content (like the new Dance Duel) and other stuff. But he always comes back for more. This is his show, after all!
Maks latest TV Guide blog, posted a week after his Season 14 elimination with Melissa Gilbert, is a long description of how he wants DWTS to change. He's been with the show since Season 2 so it's almost like a "where did our love go?" relationship blog, mixed with an Office Space worker's serious case of the Mondays.
Here are some highlights from Maks (who should just really write a book on the subject):
Frustration with the scoring: "It's no longer about ballroom and it's about performance. Some get away with that, some don't. Some can't do wrong and some can't do right. I want to reiterate that I'm not even talking about me! Take Donald Driver: He's had some amazing dances that have been underscored."
Ease up production: "I hope that there will be major discussions in the off-season about the show. It's a physically demanding show and I think at one point, production forgot that. This is not a scripted soap. In a soap, you can kill someone. ... The one night we had off — Mondays — we didn't have anymore for three weeks because of the Dance Duel. [...] It's devastating to you physically and mentally."
Is he coming back? "As for next season, it's too early to say if I'll be back. I'm the kind of person who doesn't want to say anything until it's done. It'll depend on where I am a few months from now and what I have on my plate. If I'm not asked back, then my behavior did not please someone. If I am asked back and I can come back, there has to be a serious discussion. I'm not a big deal. There are a lot of cast members. I know I bring some stuff to the show that people don't like, but I would need to know what I'm coming back for."
On repairing All-Stars contestants with new pros: "I know there are rumors about a possible All-Stars season. [...] I've heard is that the returning celebrities who didn't win last time will be paired with new pros. I think that's a terrible idea. It's like saying, 'Hey, your marriage didn't work, so let's try you with someone else.' What is the point of that? To prove that Derek can win trophies and Maks can't? It's not jealousy speaking. Ultimately, I would never want to deprive people of the experience — it's the most insane, stupid and gratifying experience you'll have. It's unnecessary and completely necessary. If one of my past partners says yes and they're paired with someone else, I'll rooting for them. But I don't think it's right. If there's going to be an All-Stars season, it has to be thought out."
We’re in total agreement about the inexplicable scoring (why do the comments never match the scores?) — and we’d all probably love more transparency to know how our votes have helped or not helped contestants place in the rankings. However, we can’t say we agree on the All-Stars thing — the idea of re-pairing some contestants is pretty exciting from here — although it makes sense for the pros to see it from a different perspective. But what’s the alternative, telling Mel B she can’t do All-Stars because Maks is already dancing with Kirstie, or vice versa? That would be more unfair.
Watch the next new episode of DWTS tonight, May 15 at 9 p.m. ET/PT onABC.