Latin Week or Survivor on Dancing With the Stars Monday, 8 p.m. ET

Latin Week seemed like a gimmick free zone, until the producers introduced immunity and dance challenges. What is this, DWTS or Survivor? Photo: Cheryl Burke and Gilles Marini's Argentine Tango scored a perfect 30 in Season 8 / Photo ABC Adam Taylor

SAN DIEGO – April 29, 2013 – We’ve had Len’s Side by Side Challenge, Best Year of My Life, Prom Night, and Stevie Wonder Week so far in Season 16 of “Dancing With The Stars.” 

This week, DWTS fans assumed they would get a gimmick free week of nothing but classic Latin ballroom dancing from the competitors. All the couples have danced at least one Latin style so far, but they will get to explore something new this week and work hard to master the specific style assigned to them.

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Not so fast, twinkle toes.

According to ABC’s news release, the remaining seven couples will perform their assigned Latin dances. The top couple based on the judges’ scores will be safe from elimination for the week (i.e., the couple gets immunity). The remaining six couples will then participate in a Dance Off. They will compete against another couple doing either the Cha Cha Cha, Jive, or Rumba. The judges will pick a winner from each pair, and the winner will add three points to his or her score.

Maks Chmerkovskiy and Mel B scored 29 out of 30 for their Paso Doble in Season 5. Photo: ABC.

The couples scoring second through fourth get to pick their opponents. How will they choose? It would make sense to pick off the competitor you think will score lowest. For example, if Kellie comes in second, she’s likely to pick Andy Dick as her opponent. How the dance style gets assigned isn’t clear. Perhaps the couple who gets picked to compete gets to choose the dance style.

What will also complicate the choices is that some couples have danced several of the Latin styles. Everyone’s danced the Cha Cha Cha before. The top four couples have all danced the Jive. But Aly Raisman, Ingo Rademacher, and Andy Dick have only danced the one style up until this week.

So what if two couples are tied for first? What then? Have the judges been advised not to allow a tie? Will the couples be aggressively competitive, or just nice and dance against someone they like?

DWTS fan blogs incuding the well-read and respected Pure DWTS are chock full of theories about what the producers’ hidden motives are in introducing this complicated scenario. Are they trying to get rid of a certain star? Or prop up a star that needs help? Are they trying to generate fan interest by scaring someone’s supporters into voting?

Shawn Johnson and Mark Ballas shake it during Season 8. Photo: ABC.

Whatever the reasons, the bottom line is that with or without the silly immunity and challenge dances, it’s going to be a rough week for the male competitors who aren’t able to shake their moneymakers. Sean Lowe, Ingo Rademacher and Andy Dick, we’re talking to you. Jacoby Jones drew the salsa as his dance and what he lacks in finesse he’ll overcome with energy.

It’s a week for the ladies to shine, and they are the ones to beat at this point. It’s possible we will see a second straight season with an all-woman final. Jacoby Jones is the only dancer who could threaten such an outcome at this point, unless Andy Dick’s fans are voting in such droves that he ends up edging out someone like Aly Raisman.

It’s annoying for viewers who would rather see the twists and turns on the ballroom floor instead of in the point schemes, but much of America enjoys the fun and glam and isn’t really assessing the dance skills past a certain point.

Reminders about voting: vote online, by phone, or vote via text message using the last four numbers for any couple. You can vote online at the official Dancing With The Stars page on Facebook, or the ABC Dancing With The Stars page.

Aly Raisman and Mark Ballas: Salsa
Voting # 1-800-868-3408
Ingo Rademacher and Kym Johnson: Rumba
Voting # 1-800-868-3403
Sean Lowe and Peta Murgatroyd: Rumba
Voting # 1-800-868-3407
Kellie Pickler and Derek Hough: Samba
Voting # 1-800-868-3401
Zendaya Coleman and Val Chmerkovskiy: Paso Doble
Voting # 1-800-868-3406
Andy Dick and Sharna Burgess: Rumba
Voting # 1-800-868-3411
Jacoby Jones and Karina Smirnoff: Salsa
Voting # 1-800-868-3412

“Dancing With the Stars: Season 16” airs Monday night, April 29, at 8 p.m. ET/PT, on the ABC Television Network.

Gayle Lynn Falkenthal, APR, is President/Owner of the Falcon Valley Group in San Diego, California. She is also a serious boxing fan covering the Sweet Science for Communities. Read more Media Migraine in the Communities at The Washington Times. Follow Gayle on Facebook and on Twitter @PRProSanDiego. Gayle can be reached via Google +


Please credit “Gayle Falkenthal for Communities Digital News at Washington Times” when quoting from or linking to this story.  


Copyright © 2013 by Falcon Valley Group

This article is the copyrighted property of the writer and Communities @ Written permission must be obtained before reprint in online or print media. REPRINTING TWTC CONTENT WITHOUT PERMISSION AND/OR PAYMENT IS THEFT AND PUNISHABLE BY LAW.

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Gayle Falkenthal

Gayle Lynn Falkenthal, MS, APR, is President of the Falcon Valley Group, a San Diego based communications consulting firm. Falkenthal is a veteran award winning broadcast and print journalist, editor, producer, talk host and commentator. She is an instructor at National University in San Diego, and previously taught in the School of Journalism & Media Studies at San Diego State University.


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