"DWTS" Week 7 Recap: Who's the Real Villain?

October 26, 2020

Though we hate to question a “Dancing with the Stars” theme night, we have to ask: Is this really a year where anyone is craving more villainy? More scary stuff? More heart-racing television? Frankly, we would’ve been fine if “DWTS” had chosen to skip Halloween altogether this season. We’ve had enough masks already this year. Let’s move right along to Thanksgiving.

However, Villains Night on “DWTS” did provide us with some of the best dancing we’ve seen so far in Season 29—and the season’s first perfect score. In case you missed last night’s episode (or you were too busy panic-shopping for a Zoom-ready Halloween costume), we rounded up some of the best dancing from Villains Night.

Jeannie Mai and Brandon Armstrong: Paso Doble

If you’ve been wronged by a man this Mercury retrograde (be it your ex or, say, Mitch McConnell), please enjoy this performance by man-eating icon Jeannie Mai. Performing a perfect paso doble, Jeannie went full Hannibal Lecter on partner Brandon Armstrong, throwing him around the ballroom, trying to take bites out of his flesh, and even slapping him across the face, repeatedly. The judges gave Jeannie and Brandon two 8s and a 9, for a total 25. We gave Jeannie a 10 for battling the patriarchy, one paso at a time.

Nelly and Daniella Karagach: Argentine Tango

Because we haven’t had the chance to talk about them yet, we’d like to take a moment to discuss Nelly’s custom-made heeled dancing sneakers. While we’re sure that somewhere across the pond, usual “DWTS” judge Len Goodman is screaming, we have to say: We love them.

Last night, Nelly donned his sneaker-heels to perform a truly amazing Argentine tango. And after this tango, we think Nelly may be this season’s dark horse. Sure, he started off slow, but his Villains Night performance was somehow both spooky *and* sensual—which isn’t an easy combo to pull off. The judges gave Nelly and Daniella three 9s for a total 27, citing this as the duo’s best performance yet.

Nev Schulman and Jenna Johnson: Paso Doble

Like most dancers, we at Dance Spirit are not huge fans of ballet blockbuster Black Swan. However, Nev Schulman’s performance felt less like Black Swan to us, and more like it was inspired by Matthew Bourne’s Swan Lake. And in our book, that’s a *very* good thing. Nev and partner Jenna Johnson brought all the drama to their paso doble last night, earning the season’s first perfect score (!!!). Shoutout to Nev and Jenna for doing right by Tchaikovsky.

But as we approached yet another elimination, we couldn’t help but wonder: Were the real villains of Villains Night the judges, for sending home yet another one of our beloved stars? Much to think about.

Maneater Jeannie Mai and partner Brandon Armstrong landed in jeopardy alongside Monica Aldama and Val Chmerkovskiy. The judges voted to send Monica and Val home. And while we’re bummed to see Monica go, we’re also guessing that she’s ready to start prepping for Daytona 2021