Adam Taylor / ABC
Hope Solo and Maks Chmerkovskiy delivered an ambitious Argentine tango on Monday, but it wasn't enough to keep them in the competition.
It was the elimination that most “Dancing With the Stars” fans saw coming, but it still shocked thanks to some unaired footage from performance night.
Soccer star Hope Solo, who received the lowest judges’ scores on Monday, was the latest ballroom hopeful to get booted from the competition, leaving Rob Kardashian, Ricki Lake and J.R. Martinez to vie for the mirror ball trophy. Though she clearly put in great effort, her sloppy paso doble and athletic-rather-than-sexy Argentine tango just weren’t on par with the other semifinalists’ performances (for the most part).
Her frustration was obvious and understandable, but what fans didn’t see or hear – until elimination night -- was the attitude behind the scenes Monday. After receiving a score of 21 out of 30 for her first effort, Hope griped, “Seven (from each judge). That’s the same as I got in week one! Kiss my … booty!”
Still cranky from the first round of criticism, she and pro partner, Maksim Chmerkovskiy, muttered a few F-bombs under their breaths before getting the judges’ comments for their ambitious but flawed Argentine tango. “I don’t even want to look at them,” the flashback clip showed her telling Maks. And as viewers saw on both nights, she hardly did, save to give the panel an angry glare now and then.
grump Len Goodman. As was revealed Tuesday, he had no idea why the pair was so angry. “The thing is, we were nice!” he told fellow judges Carrie Ann Inaba and Bruno Tonioli. And they were! (For the tango, anyway.) Len had complimented her on her lifts, Bruno on her control, and Carrie Ann on the fluidity (though she did complain about a lack of grace).
“So what we did … whatever. Nobody else can do, so give us your little 8s,” Hope said backstage after receiving a 24 for the Argentine tango.
Yowza. Lucky for her, “Dancing” opted to air those complaints on elimination night rather than voting night. As fans of the show told me this week in our chats, the soccer star and Maks earned a few extra sympathy votes this week after what appeared to be a random snipe at the pro by Carrie Ann, and the judges’ decision to put Hope in last place in the cha-cha relay round. (Now that, readers, looked like a petty move. After all, it was not only Hope’s best dance of the night, she also outdanced fan and judges’ favorite J.R., who placed third with a way subpar performance.) Had those bits aired Monday, the duo surely would’ve lost votes from even their biggest supporters. (Me included.) Not that it really mattered in the end.
But after a night’s rest, it seemed her attitude was adjusted for the positive. After receiving the news of their elimination, Hope gave a nice little exit speech. “This competition is one of the toughest competitions I’ve ever been a part of,” she said. “I’m grateful. We have the most amazing fan base.”
Maks, who seemed as if he was still a bit miffed, apologized to his celeb partner. “Sorry,” he told her when co-host Brooke Burke Charvet asked if he had a message for Hope. “Just, thank you for the determination, will and everything else. I wish I could’ve been better for you.”
Did the right dancers make it to the finale? After all the frustration he’s shown this season, do you think Maks will be back in the spring? Share your thoughts on our Facebook page!
Don't forget to join me next Monday as I host a live chat during the "DWTS" live finale performances! And on Tuesday, join me and Ree Hines at 3:30 p.m. ET to gab about who could win that coveted mirror ball trophy.