4. Kristin Cavallari, Season 13
Kristin didn't do anything wrong — except fail to have an emotional story to tell on Most Memorable Year Week. Everyone else had touching stories except for Kristin, who danced a strong Samba to the theme of ... moving to L.A. after high school. Not exactly stirring stuff. The Samba got a 24 out of 30, which put her and Mark Ballas in the middle of the pack on Week 3. The lowest scores went to Chaz Bono, with an 18, Nancy Grace with a 21 and Carson Kressley with a 23. Maybe fans just assumed Kristin and Mark were safe. Maybe those other couples just had more interesting stories. Whatever the reason, Kristin and Mark fell through the cracks and were the third couple eliminated in a shocking twist. It made it clear to everyone that the fans would be running the show, not the judges.
3. Brandy Norwood, Season 11
We all thought that Season 13 would come down to Brandy and Maks vs. Jennifer Grey and Derek Hough, with technically talented Brandy giving Maks a strong shot at the Mirror Ball he still hasn't won. So when Brandy was eliminated in the semi-finales in favor of likable but not particularly talented Bristol Palin — who had already stayed over other more elegent dancers like Audrina Patridge and Rick Fox — fans were outraged, and some even started spouting conspiracy theories.
2. Shannen Doherty, Season 10
Brenda! Why was she first? Shannen's Week 1 Viennese Waltz score of 18 wasn't great, but it was far from the worst. She tied with Niecy Nash and Chad Ochocinco and beat Kate Gosselin (16), Aiden Turner (15) and Buzz Aldrin (14). That put her roughly in the middle of the pack. She should've had fan support from 90210 fans and she had a nice backstory in that she went on the show for her father. Plus, she was paired with Mark Ballas, one of the most popular and positive pros. So what happened? We still don't know. But Kristin's fate is further proof that the Mark factor isn't as big a deal as we thought.
1. Sabrina Bryan, Season 5 and Season 15
This was the big shocker. Sabrina and Mark Ballas — who became a couple after the show — were the frontrunners for the first five weeks of the season. They even received a perfect score of 30 on Week 4 for their Paso Doble. They got their lowest scores ever on Week 6, a not-too-shabby 25 for their Foxtrot. It wasn't the lowest scores of the week; they tied with Cameron Mathison and beat Marie Osmond (23) and Jane Seymour (22). So when they were eliminated, it knocked everybody out. Carrie Ann said that if another elimination like that happened, she'd quit being a judge for the show. Sabrina Bryan and Mark's elimination was rated as the most shocking TV event for 2007. The next week, the remaining competitors wore fake tattoos of cheetah paw prints in honor of Sabrina's role in the Cheetah Girls.
Sabrina's elimination remained in fans' minds, and she was voted into the All-Stars season as the fan choice contestant. It looked like she was headed for redemption with new partner Louis van Amstel. They came out of the gate doing well. Really well. It seemed clear she was going to avoid early elimination when she scored the first perfect 30 of the season during Week 6, landing her at the top of the leaderboard going into the elimination. And then she went home anyway. Ouch.
Well, at least Elizabeth is in good company!
What do you think is the most shocking elimination ever? Let us know in the comments below!
Gina Carbone is a contributing writer at Wetpaint Entertainment. Follow her on Twitter @ginacarbone.
Catch the next episode of Dancing With the Stars Season 17 on Monday, November 18, 2013 at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.