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Dancing With The Stars: Manipulating The Scores - Here's The Rankings
Rankings by Michael Pascua
October 23, 2013

Corbin and Karina
Intentionally underscored.
Dancing with the Stars decided to attempt another "brilliant" twist to their marathon this season with a Switch-Up challenge and in all truth, it was as useless as other twists.

While this was miles better than the Cha-Cha challenge which gave Chelsea Kane a free ticket to the finals of Season 12, it was a mess both for the camera and for the couples.

As much as I appreciate that couples like Snooki & Sasha had choreography set for each style of music, it took Snooki forever to figure out which dance to pick as the music kicked in.

She deserved the three points for choreography, but not for transitions.

Corbin basically grinded against Karina. But it's not like the camera was of any help whatsoever.

The scoring this whole episode was made for adjustments in the switch-up challenge. I think Corbin was underscored because the judges knew he'd win either switch-up even against Amber.

Len handicapped Amber just enough if she was actually against Corbin, but gave her a strong enough score to survive. That's why she tied with Elizabeth in the final scores.

I know it was really convenient to have Amber and Corbin on two opposing rounds, but I really think the emphasis should be on who got the three points: Snooki and Brant.

I think Brant needed the extra points to rollover for next week whereas I've consistently been inching Snooki closer to the third spot.

Did anyone notice that if teams were now made by cumulative scores that Corbin is now conveniently in third place?

That now means that if we follow tradition Team Amber is taking on Team Elizabeth.

I assume the teams will be split as whoever gets the first pick having Corbin, Brant, and Bill and the second pick gets Snooki, Leah, Jack.

It would be really epic though if it ended up as Amber, Corbin, Snooki, and Brant on one team vs. everyone else.

We've had lopsided teams (Season 13's Halloween Team dances) and it'd be an easy way to get rid of a weak link.

I'd be more interested if production this season forced Bill and Leah to be the leaders because they had the lowest scores.

It seems like according to the rumor mongers, the groups have Freestyles which makes no sense to me. I liked Freestyles during the All-Stars season because there was no real limitations for the dancers since they all went through the cycle before.

That and I found Team "Call Me Maybe" did an epic job. I'd prefer if the regular seasons had regular dances, or just throw Mambo/Salsa as the team dances.

Granted, the producers are going to need something to close this gap between Amber/Corbin/Elizabeth/Brant/Snooki and Leah/Bill/Jack if they really want a dark horse competing.

Since we are at the halfway point, maybe we should consider where the eliminated contestant's votes are being split up. I don't think Keyshawn's supporters are voting anymore and if there are Sharna fans, they probably are supporting Peta.

Bill Nye's fans probably liked nostalgia and have moved to either Elizabeth or Leah.

Valerie's supporters probably liked the underdogs and support either Bill (hard work) or Jack (has MS).

Finally, Christina's voters probably are shifting to either someone with Disney Channel ties (Corbin), or similar pop/R&B undertones (Amber).

I'd also throw the suggestion that Mark's voters probably shifted to Derek. But who's actually admitting to being a Mark fan? He's probably giving me the same death stare that Julianne got.

Finally, it was hard for me to see Lacey and Benji Schwimmer in the audience and talking to Tom.

Lacey has proved that she's a good choreographer, she's cheery and bubbly, and I think she's camera friendly. Lacey is only 25 so she's not "old" by any standard and could be paired up with people younger (Kyle Massey was 19 when Lacey was 22) and older (Mark Dacascos was 44).

Just as a point of reference, Brant is 28, Jack is 27, and Corbin is 24; Lacey would have fit right in.

Peta is 27 and sometimes the amount of makeup on her face makes her look 35. If she can't be a pro, hell, give her Brooke Burke-Charvet's job.

Here are this week's rankings.....

Got thoughts? Post them at the end.

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