Girls rule, boys go home: Dancing With The Stars All Stars finalists named

In a first, three women will compete for the Mirror Ball Trophy in next week's finals. Photo: ABC/Communities collage

SAN DIEGO, November 20, 2012 – The finals will have an all-female lineup for the first time on Dancing With The Stars: All Stars on Monday, November 26.

Shawn Johnson, Melissa Rycroft, and Kelly Monaco will compete for the Mirror Ball Trophy. While three men have competed in the finals before in Season 3 (Emmitt Smith, Mario Lopez, and Joey Lawrence), there has never been an all-girl final.

Shawn Johnson and partner Derek Hough have been Vegas oddsmakers and fan favorites to win since the show started, and were the first to be named to the finals.

Melissa Rycroft is the only finalist who didn’t win in her first season. She placed third. Her partner Tony Dovoloni hasn’t ever won either. They are hungry and it might make the difference next week.

Emmitt Smith, winner of season 3, was eliminated first along with partner Cheryl Burke. Smith is likeable but he never seemed to have any breakthrough or water cooler performances all season. It’s a surprise he made it this far, due mainly to fan votes.

Apolo Anton Ohno won season 4 with Julianne Hough, but he won’t have the chance to repeat this year with Karina Smirnoff, as they were the final couple eliminated.

Ohno is a better ballroom dancer now than when he won. His departure is the biggest disappointment. He has struggled to get fan support all year and though he was in the top three based on judges’ scores, it wasn’t enough. At least fans saw them perform the encore dance, the best rumba ever in all 15 seasons of the show.

Kelly Monaco and Val Chmerkovskiy will advance instead. This is a couple that has an enormous fan voting operation behind them, encouraging people to set up multiple email accounts and reminding them to vote, vote, vote. Kelly Monaco isn’t undeserving but the vote seems to be more about Val than Kelly. 

Now it will be all about the freestyle routine. The professionals need to be smart and show off their star partner at her best. They can’t be self-indulgent or pick a routine that’s either too easy or too ambitious. It must be fan friendly and upbeat. It’s OK to take a style risk if it works, such as Donald Driver and Peta Murgatroyd’s rousing Texas two-step freestyle that won Season 14 for them.

Expect lots of sexiness and swivel from Kelly and Val; expect spectacular lines and legs shown off by Melissa and Tony; and incredible athletic energy from Shawn and Derek. The best possible final is when all three couples perform to the best of their own ability and walk away knowing there is nothing more they could have done.

The stars will dance three routines in all. In addition to the freestyle, they will perform an “instadance” they’ll find out about on the spot, and repeat a routine from this season they believe they can show improvement on.

Mark your calendar for our Communities Live Chat for the “Dancing With The Stars” final. We’ll watch and talk about the one hour event and pick our own winners before we learn who’s going home with the Season 15 Mirror Ball Trophy. 

“Dancing With The Stars: All-Stars” Week 9 airs Monday, November 19, at 8 p.m. Eastern on ABC.


Gayle Lynn Falkenthal, APR, is President/Owner of the Falcon Valley Group in San Diego, California. Read more Media Migraine in the Communities at The Washington Times. Follow Gayle on Facebook and on Twitter @PRProSanDiego.


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

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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.


Contact Gayle Falkenthal


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