This article contains spoilers for the November 7 episode of Dancing With the Stars.
On Tuesday’s music video night, “Dancing With the Stars” featured a hot cha-cha set to Britney Spears’ “I’m a Slave 4 U” by Ariana Madix, who said she knew the choreography by heart because she I practiced for hours in her bedroom when she was young.
Guest judge Paul Abdul, who gave her a 10, was generous with both her praise and her reviews, raving: “You channeled Britney Spears seamlessly…I can’t take my eyes off you.”
Tonioli joked, “Hit me, Ariana, again!” but asked the “Vanderpump Rules” star to work on her footwork. Madix said she could “die happy” after “living out my pop star Britney dreams.” The reality star received 37, the best solo dance score of the night.
Despite ending the night with the second highest score, the celebrity went home in Week 7 by social media star Lele Pons, who said she was “so grateful” to be part of the competition. She and partner Brandon Armstrong performed a hip-swaying salsa to Shakira’s “Whenever, Wherever,” which earned her an 8 from the regular judges and a 9 from Abdul.
Marvel star Xochitl Gomez joined Madix at the top of the leaderboard after group dances to “Gangnam Style” and “Everybody” by the Backstreet Boys earned extra points. The actress’ first dance was a jazz number to Gwen Stefani’s “Hollaback Girl.” Abdul gushed that her collaboration with Val Chmerkovskiy was “the most provocative and surprising partnership in this ballroom.”
Judge Derek Hough told many contestants, including Jason Mraz, whose jazz routine to “Take on Me” by a-ha from Abdul received a 10, that they needed to do better at this stage of the competition. Despite his criticism, Hough told the singer that “he had what it took to go far in this competition.”
Alyson Hannigan and Sasha Farber performed an energetic quickstep to Christina Aguilera’s “Candyman,” which earned the pair top nine and a total score of 33. Hough stood up and shouted: “That was your best dance yet!” Abdul praised the actress for her “impressive power and sweetness”, while Tonioli was delighted to see “a real quickstep”.
“Bachelorette” star Charity Lawson and Artem Chigvintsev performed a jazz routine to “All For You” by Janet Jackson. Hough said it was “pretty” and “accurate” but she needed more energy. Abdul added: “If you can unleash your power a little more, you can be a top performer.” The dance received all 8 points, for a total of 32.
“The Brady Bunch” actors Barry Williams and Peta Murgatroyd performed a quickstep to Elton John’s 1983 hit “I’m Still Standing.” Tonioli, who danced with the beach set in the original video, joked that the actor should have also worn a swimsuit for the performance. Williams, who achieved a score of 28, said: “It’s never too late to take on challenges and make your dreams come true.” Despite low scores, he was saved by viewers’ votes.
Reality TV star Harry Jowsey and Rylee Arnold performed a jazz routine to NSYNC’s “It’s Gonna Be Me.” Lance Bass, who competed on the seventh season of DWTS, stopped by rehearsals for a pep talk. The dance received all 6 points, but Jowsey was praised for his energy in the group dance to “Gangnam Style,” which earned the first perfect score of the season.
The “Gangnam Style” team scored 40 points for Lawson, Pons, Jowsey and Gomez. Afterwards, Madix, Williams, Hannigan and Mraz got the goth vibe right for the Backstreet Boys’ “Everybody (Backstreet’s Back)” in a rehearsal led by AJ McLean.
Since Madix was at the top of the leaderboard after the first round, she doesn’t have to participate in Dance Off next week. And your bonus points will be applied next week. The reality star’s appearances came after she spent four days at BravoCon and had to train in the evening after a full day.
LEADERBOARD WEEK 7
Jury evaluations for solo dances
Ariana Madix and Pasha Pashkov: 37/40
Jason Mraz and Daniella Karagach: 35/40
Xochitl Gomez and Val Chmerkovskiy: 34/40
Lele Pons and Brandon Armstrong: 33/40 [Eliminated]
Alyson Hannigan and Sasha Farber: 33/40
Charity Lawson and Artem Chigvintsev: 32/40
Barry Williams and Peta Murgatroyd: 28/40
Harry Jowsey and Rylee Arnold: 24/40
Total points after team dances
Ariana Madix and Pasha Pashko: 74
Xochitl Gomez and Val Chmerkovskiy: 74
Lele Pons and Brandon Armstrong: 73 [Eliminated]
Charity Lawson and Artem Chigvintsev: 72
Jason Mraz and Daniella Karagach: 72
Alyson Hannigan and Sasha Farber: 70
Barry Williams and Peta Murgatroyd: 65
Harry Jowsey and Rylee Arnold: 64
“Dancing With the Stars” airs live on ABC on Tuesdays and streams on Disney+ in local time zones and the next day on Hulu.