“Dance Moms’” Abby Lee Miller guest judged on Monday night’s episode of "Dancing with the Stars" and the dance teacher from hell was on her best behavior, despite Bruno Tonioli shushing Miller during her first commentary. With six celebrities left, the semi-finals are fast approaching and fan favorites are prone to elimination. Week eight bid farewell to Danica McKellar after a well-performed tango as seen in the following DWTS recap.
Mark Ballas delighted viewers with his fancy footwork and vocal prowess when he opened DWTS with his new single, “Get My Name.” The entire cast from "Dance Moms" visited the set as audience members to witness Abby Lee Miller judge, and get served a dose of her own medicine from Bruno Tonioli and Maksim Chmerkovskiy. The “Dancing with the Stars” judge told the head of the “Dance Moms” to “shut up” right off the bat as Abby Lee Miller critiqued Charlie White. Chmerkovskiy also wasn’t happy with her comments and let her know after his rhumba performance with partner Meryl Davis.
Charlie White and Sharna Burgess danced first and were the first couple informed of their safety. White was discouraged after scores from the past few weeks and Burgess brought his mother in to inspire and cheer his spirits. Charlie White’s quickstep earned the pair a perfect score and he credited the 40 to his positive attitude. Abby Lee Miller suggested he slick back his hair.
Danica McKellar and Valentin Chmerkovskiy danced second with a tango fit for an evil queen among the possibility of elimination, as the couple was told they were in jeopardy. McKellar played the part perfectly in a gorgeous black and white gown, although Abby Lee Miller said the halter-top hunched her shoulders a bit. The pair earned a 38, even with Danica dancing with broken ribs. Sadly however, Danica was eliminated and won't perform in the DWTS semi-finals.
Meryl Davis and Maksim Chmerkovskiy danced an emotional rhumba, which some of the judges’ felt was too “contemporary.” Abby said Davis’ feet were “completely sickle,” a fact another viewer, which happens to be a dancer, pointed out immediately. Maks wasn’t happy and commented, “I really don’t care for anything she has to say.” The couple earned a 36 and it appeared Abby Lee changed her score to an eight after Chmerkovskiy ripped her a new one.
Candace Cameron Bure and Mark Ballas performed their fox trot knowing they were once again in jeopardy. It was one of her best performances and the pair received a low 36, however Bure survived to compete for the coveted mirror ball trophy.
James Maslow and Peta Murgatroyd were also in jeopardy, despite an obvious chemistry, which was questioned by Big Time Rush band mates. The pair’s Viennese waltz earned a 36, with a 10 from Abby Lee Miller who had an inappropriate eye for James Maslow.
Amy Purdy and Derek Hough were not only safe when they danced the Argentine tango, but received the second perfect score of the night. Abby Lee Miller was so taken by Purdy’s performance, she noted, “my students are here and I better never hear I’m too tired.”
The second round of the competition involved Celebrity Dance Duels where the stars were paired with another couple and then danced together without their pros for a part of each routine. Meryl and Maks and Val and Danica danced a stiff samba after a tense rehearsal, and each couple added only 34 points to their scores, with another low score from Abby after a rebuttal from Valentin.
Candace and Mark and Charlie and Sharna were paired for the Celebrity Dance Duels to a contemporary number. They were an “unlikely pairing,” however the team earned 38 out of 40, which was added to each of their scores.
Amy and Derek and James and Peta closed out the DWTS Celebrity Dance Duels round performing a jive routine. Amy put her trust in James and it paid off. The couples earned a 39, the highest from the group round.
“Dancing with the Stars” returns next Monday at 8/7C with an American Icon Semi-Finals night and without Danica McKellar. Legendary choreographer Kenny Ortega joins DWTS as guest judge.