DwtS In-Season Update: 10-09-06

Vivica’s departure last week showed that everyone on Dancing with the Stars is fair game. As this week’s Performance Show approaches, who’s feeling secure, and who’s on shaky ground?

7. Jerry Springer & Kym Johnson
touching Waltz earned them another week of competition, thanks to all
of the parents (and saps like me) in the audience who threw a spare
vote Jerry’s way. He’s actually not a bad dancer, but he can’t do some
of the “wow” moves that the younger celebs can. It could soon be time
to let the young ‘uns have the floor to themselves. Though I have him
ranked last pre-dance, if someone else has an off night, don’t be
stunned if Jerry’s fans save him one more time.

6. Sara Evans & Tony Dovolani
a relatively high-scoring Jive, Sara’s Paso Doble scored only a twenty
from the judges. Like Jerry, she just can’t keep up with the rest of
her competitors. After the unexpected departure of Vivica (whose
dancing was technically far superior to Sara’s), I suspect the judges
are going to start scoring performances much more critically. If that’s
the case, Sara could be in trouble.

5. Monique Coleman & Louis van Amstel
stint in the Bottom Two was a shock, but it did show where she ranks in
terms of fan support. Louis is more intense than he was last season,
and his serious demeanor seems like it’s stifling the fun side of
Monique that she’s shown on several occasions. They need to look like
they’re having fun if they want to win over new fans — and they need
to do it soon. If they can, they still could wind up the season’s
sleeper team.

4. Emmitt Smith & Cheryl Burke
should be ranking them higher just because of Cheryl’s cool long hair,
but they just haven’t hit the right note quite yet. Mario and Joey are
two of the best dancers in DwtS history, and it’s going to
take some creative choreography, technical chops, and loads of charisma
to pull ahead of them. Emmitt & Cheryl have the potential to do it,
but they need to start building the foundation now for a strong finish.

3. Willa Ford & Maksim Chmerkovskiy
recovered nicely from a couple of early brushes with elimination, and
her popularity appears to be on the rise. If she continues with the
strong performances, she could be the last woman standing — a feat
that seemed near-impossible after the show’s first few weeks.

2. Joey Lawrence & Edyta Sliwinska
having such a good time that it’s hard not to like them. Though they
each have different strengths, you could flip a coin to decide who the
better dancer is between Joey and Mario. Joey’s best bet is to continue
to be gracious. That could give him the win with the audience, should
the judges deadlock.

1. Mario Lopez & Karina Smirnoff
I said, it’s pretty even as to who’s the better dancer, Mario or Joey.
Mario may have the edge because he’s hot, and as long as he keeps
swaddling his buns in spandex, that may be what it takes to win the

Other DwtS News:
Extra filed a behind-the-scenes report on Joey and Mario. And here’s a link to the original TMZ report about the meeting between Shanna Moakler’s fist and Paris Hilton’s face.

This week’s issue of TV Guide features a spread on the early careers of some DwtS
cast members, including a photo of a scantily-clad Bruno Tonioli
dancing in an Elton John video from 1983. If you’ve ever wondered what
Bruno looked like in bikini briefs (and who hasn’t?), rock out to the
video for “I’m Still Standing.”