Can you believe we just passed the halfway point of Dancing With the Stars Season 12? It seems like just yesterday we were all muttering “Who the heck is Mike Catherwood?” In preparation for this list, we looked back at our premiere Power Rankings. A month later, we still agree with ourselves about three of our final four, but one couple got dumped from the list. Read on for the final three couples we predict will Freestyle their way into the season finale:
Hines Ward & Kym Johnson
Hines & Kym are the closest thing to a lock to make the DWTS finale, but that certainly doesn’t mean they are a lock to win. As everyone has repeated ad infinitum, there are no frontrunners this season. But Hines & Kym have become the judges’ darlings, topping the leaderboard more than any other couple. The judges said they would like to see Hines push himself and — if he does that well — that could propel him even further above the pack. The fans seem to love Hines and he and Kym have a sexy, playful chemistry on and off the dance floor. They are both likable and drama-free. They have few downsides, other than a lack of too many memorable moments on stage. They are consistently good when it comes to technique and performance, but "good" isn't "wow."
Kirstie Alley & Maksim Chmerkovskiy
Kirstie & Maks are pretty much the flip side of Hines & Kym. Hines is a consistently good dancer, but he’s rarely the talk of the night, even when he gets the best scores of the night. Kirstie has ensured that she is always the talk of the night — and rarely for her actual dancing. From Maks’ fall and Kirstie’s shoe loss to the appearance of John “The Dance Doctor” Travolta and the disappearance of Maks’ shirt, they have remained the must-watch couple of the season. Without them, the show would be much less interesting. That compels votes. Of course, it doesn’t hurt that Maks is devilishly attractive and knows exactly how best to work his many assets. They put on a good show, plain and simple. However, when we come down off the high of their performance value, we see that their dancing needs improvement. As the judges noted, Kirstie has stamina issues and we haven’t even gotten to the point where the couples do two dances a week. How will that effect them?
Chelsea Kane & Mark Ballas
On our premiere Power Rankings, we had Ralph Macchio here. We adore the Karate Kid, but we suspect he’ll be leaving us in fourth place. Of course, we could be wrong with all three choices, but we think we’ll see Mark back in the ring, battling for his third Mirror Ball trophy. Chelsea & Mark have the best mix of technique and performance value — they are Hines and Kirstie combined. Chelsea is a remarkably quick study, as well as being young, fresh, cute, funny and popular with the same Disney fans who got Kyle Massey to the end last season. Mark has gone out of his way to distinguish himself as the most fun, edgy, creative choreographer of the season. (It helps that Derek and Julianne Hough are not around.) The judges may not always appreciate his vision, but it has helped him in past seasons. Chelsea has a lot of similarities to Mark’s past winners, Kristi Yamaguchi and Shawn Johnson, but with even more appeal. However, that makes her closest to Sabrina Bryan, who was a shocking early elimination on Season 5. People assumed she’d be safe. It could happen this time, too.