The last two couples to go home on Dancing with the Stars have been near the top of the leaderboard, with Christina Milian and Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi getting eliminated while low-scoring stars like Bill Engvall, Leah Remini and Jack Osbourne have remained safe. Will that trend continue once again?
In week 8, Cher will serve as guest judge, replacing Len Goodman. That could definitely shake things up as Len clearly plays favorites (often overscoring Brant Daugherty and underscoring Amber Riley).
This week also marks the return of immunity for the individual couple with the highest score while the other six will compete in head-to-head dance-offs. The high score is likely going to be a three-way battle. Corbin Bleu has been at the top in four of the first seven weeks while Amber Riley has three highest scores and Elizabeth Berkley has two (that obviously includes several ties). Brant had the high score back in week 3, though it seems doubtful he’ll repeat that feat.
Not only will one of those couples receive immunity, but odds are good the others will win their dance-offs to earn extra points, leaving Bill, Leah and Jack at the bottom of the leaderboard. Hopefully one of them will be eliminated, because the other four have all proven themselves as deserving.
Before going into my predictions, here’s a look at what styles the seven couples will perform, all of them to Cher songs.
Elizabeth and Val: Jazz
Amber and Derek: Rumba
Leah and Tony: Viennese Waltz
Corbin and Karina: Argentine Tango
Brant and Peta: Foxtrot
Jack and Cheryl: Tango
Bill and Emma: Disco
I expect a lot of good things from this line-up. Corbin should excel, Elizabeth will shine, Amber will shake it and Brant will hopefully return to the elegant, charming man we saw in his week 3 Quickstep. The duller ballroom routines are being reserved for the less impressive dancers (Leah and Jack) while Bill’s Disco number will probably be a ton of fun, but not very good.
However, with Cher judging, anything is possible. Is she qualified to judge technical merits, or will she give out generous scores for attitude? Here are my picks for the Bottom 3.
Bill Engval and Emma Slater
They have the lowest average score by a large margin and seem to elude elimination every week. Perhaps being close-to-death is keeping his fans extra supportive with the votes. But this good luck has to run out sooner or later, and his lackluster Elvis Quickstep probably won’t get him that many votes (though his starring role in the Team Spooky Bom Bom routine might save him).
Jack Osbourne and Cheryl Burke
He’s been my pick to go home for about a month now, and I’m bound to be right one of these times. He’s not that good, and there may be a backlash against him because no one seemed to think he deserved that 10 from Carrie Ann Inaba last week.
Leah Remini and Tony Dovolani
I surprised even myself by deeming her Salsa my favorite individual dance of last week. And I don’t think she deserves to go home, but I can’t imagine any of the other four being in jeopardy. Brant has the Pretty Little Liars fans, Amber has the Gleeks and Corbin and Elizabeth have the distinction of being the best two dancers (in my opinion). Still, Leah going home seems doubtful and I really think it’s between Jack and Bill.
I’m predicting that Jack Osbourne and Cheryl Burke will be eliminated. While I narrowed it down to him and Bill, I think Bill’s story is just a whole lot more compelling. He was a guy no one thought would last more than a week or two, yet he’s become a fan favorite who everyone loves. Plus, being in danger every single week helps keep his supporters vigilant, and I have a feeling his Disco performance is going to get surprisingly good scores without cranky Len Goodman around to rain on everyone’s parade.
To be fair, I’m not sure I care how the next three eliminations go, as long as its Jack, Bill and Leah. Elizabeth and Corbin are head-and-shoulders better than everyone, Derek’s choreography keeps Amber a serious contender and Brant is so damn charming and sexy that I can’t imagine the show without him. They should obviously be the final four, so it’s really up to the other three to sneak into that line-up.
Dancing with the Stars airs Monday at 8pm on ABC.
(Image courtesy of ABC)