Aly Raisman and Mark Ballas danced first on Week 3, with a Viennese Waltz set to the prom theme. Carrie Ann said Aly’s movement quality was amazing, but she needed to work on staying in character, since she faded in and out. The other judges disagreed with Carrie Ann, and Len — not known to be the sweetest judge, as D.L. Hughley could tell you — actually jumped in to defend Aly, saying she put herself out there with her heart pounding. Carrie Ann gave the dance a score of 7, with Len and Bruno going for 8s. It was a decent score, especially for the first routine of the night, but not exactly what Mark wanted.
"I was really pleased with how last week's performance went,” Mark wrote in his USA Today blog. “I thought Aly nailed it and she looked beautiful. That said, I wasn't too thrilled with Carrie Anne's ‘7’ or her comments, because for a hyper-focused person like Aly, I feel like she nailed the character and is improving every week. I would be the first person to tell her that she was not in character. And I thought she did a great job. This goes back to my opinion that when it comes to judging, the males have it easier than the females. There were a few ‘8's’ given out when I feel like Aly danced just as well if not better and she had more ‘dance’ content. But again, judging is something we will never figure out."
Do you think the judges were too hard on Aly? Are they harder on female dancers than male dancers? The first dance of the night often seems like it’s scored lower than it might’ve been if it was done at the end of the night, so it may just be a matter of timing.