Season 16 of “Dancing with the Stars” premiered on March 18. Although several stars rose to the top of the leaderboard, others sank to the bottom. Disney star Zendaya, the youngest star to ever compete on “DWTS” earned top marks; while the master of comedy and political commentary, D.L. Hughley, ended up at the opposite end of the leader board. Here’s how it all played out on Monday night on “Dancing with the Stars.”
Country superstar and “American Idol” alumn Kellie Pickler danced the Cha Cha Cha with Derek Hough and it was a strong start to the night. Head judge Len Goodman said, “You came out and you sold it.” Carrie Ann Inaba agreed and Bruno Tonioli added, “I can’t wait to see you again.” Score: 21.
Victor Ortiz and new pro Lindsay Arnold danced the Foxtrot. The professional boxer has scored 22 knockouts during his career, but how did he score on opening night of “DWTS?” Bruno commented, “That was a wonderful combo of boyish charm and Latino passion.” Carrie Ann liked Victor’s posture, but Len was hoping for a few more wow moves. Score: 18.
“General Hospital” soap veteran Ingo Rademacher and Kym Johnson were up next with their contemporary dance, a new routine added for season 16. Carrie Ann thought the performance was raw and passionate, but Len called out Kym for the lifts. Bruno compared Ingo to Bradley Cooper in “Silver Linings Playbook.” Score: 20.
Lisa Vanderpump from “The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills” was tasked to perform an elegant Foxtrot with new pro Gleb Savchenko. Len Goodman stated, “It was acceptable, but it wasn’t exceptional.” Bruno liked Lisa’s lines, but recommended that she work on her posture. Carrie Ann added, “Overall, it was nice and easy on the eyes.” Score: 18.
D.L. Hughley had little time to prepare for his Cha Cha Cha with Cheryl Burke and it showed. He received the lowest scores of the night. Bruno disliked the routine and said, “OMG. You have terminated the Cha Cha Cha.” Carrie Ann and Len both agreed that the performance was rough and unrefined. Score: 12.
Zendaya from Disney Channel’s “Shake It Up” actually shook up the judges with her contemporary dance with Val Chmerkovskiy. She had all the right moves and even hopped up on the judges’ table. Carrie Ann exclaimed, “That was amazing and beautiful!” Bruno loved the choreography and Len had only good things to say. Score: 24.
Sean Lowe from “The Bachelor” found love on one reality program, but did he get love from the judges on “DWTS?” Len liked his Foxtrot with Peta Murgatroyd, but thought it needed more refinement. Carrie Ann commented on Sean’s fearless exuberance and added, “I bet you’re going to go far.” However, Bruno agreed with Len and thought the routine needed more finesse. Score: 19.
Aly Raisman and Mark Ballas hit the dance floor next with their Cha Cha Cha. Did the most decorated woman gymnast from this year’s Olympics earn top scores from the judges? Bruno shouted,” You can shake it like the best!” Carrie Ann said that she saw a lot of potential and Len loved Aly’s vitality. Score: 21.
Dorothy Hamill has already conquered breast cancer and now she wants to shine on “DWTS” with partner Tristan MacManus. The Olympic gold medalist danced a contemporary routine, which was inspirational and touched the judges. Carrie Ann stated, “That performance was just golden.” Len liked Dorothy’s gentle approach, while Bruno noticed her connection to her partner. Score: 21.
Country superstar Wynonna Judd has won five Grammy Awards, but did her Cha Cha Cha with reigning champion Tony Dovolani win praise from the judges? Len thought Wynonna showed rhythm and personality, Bruno liked her timing and Carrie Ann exclaimed, “You were working it!” Score: 18.
Funny man Andy Dick has overcome some serious challenges in his life, but could he overcome the critical eyes of the judges on “Dancing with the Stars?” His Foxtrot with new pro Sharna Burgess wasn’t panned, but it wasn’t exactly praised either. Bruno stated, “It was like Woody Allen doing the Foxtrot.” Len thought Andy had the “smoothness of Robocop,” yet Carrie Ann said she was touched. Score: 17.
Jacoby Jones, the wide receiver from the Baltimore Ravens who set four Super Bowl records, had the least amount of time to prepare for his Cha Cha Cha with partner Karina Smirnoff. However, he hit the dance floor with unbridled enthusiasm. Carrie Ann thought his dance was a medley of touchdown dances and Bruno said that Jacoby has the potential to win the mirror ball trophy. Len was more critical and added, “That was all icing and no cake.” Score: 20.
Below is the “DWTS” leaderboard from week one of season 16.
- Zendaya: 24
- Dorothy Hamill: 21
- Kellie Pickler: 21
- Aly Raisman: 21
- Jacoby Jones: 20
- Ingo Rademacher: 20
- Sean Lowe: 19
- Wynonna Judd: 18
- Victor Ortiz: 18
- Lisa Vanderpump: 18
- Andy Dick: 17
- D.L. Hughley: 12
The scores from this week will be combined with viewers’ votes and the judges’ scores from next week to determine who will be the first celebrity to hang up his or her dancing shoes. On Tuesday night, “DWTS” will air a one-hour new episode spotlighting the stars’ grueling training sessions, which airs at 9 p.m. EST on ABC.
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