Actress Lea Thompson surprised the audience when she was voted off “Dancing With the Stars” Monday night just one week shy of the semifinals.
“It was a great night,” she said today on “Good Morning America” alongside her professional partner, Artem Chigvintsev. “We had really a great time. We were always laughing and having a great time, and he’s an amazing choreographer.”
“All because of you,” Chigvintsev added.
Thompson, 53, said she was proud of what she had accomplished on the show, including losing 10 pounds and getting back in shape.
“It was really great to feel like my body was my body again,” the actress explained. “I never worked out and I got so much stronger. I feel so much better than I’ve felt in 15 years. I’ve got to keep doing it.”
Each contestant had to perform two dances during Monday’s show. In the first dance, they performed with their pro partner to a style of dance, music and costume all chosen by viewers. In the second routine, they included a third dancer who was either an eliminated pro dancer or a member of the show’s troupe.
At the end of the night, Thompson and reality TV star Sadie Robertson were both in jeopardy of going home.
Thompson hugged Chigvintsev when she first learned of her elimination.
“I just feel really great … I feel strong and I’m anxious to get back to my day job on ‘Switched at Birth,’” she said, referring to the ABC Family series.
Since Thompson has improved throughout the season her exit came as a bit of a surprise, and there were some shouts of disbelief from the audience. Comedian Tommy Chong, who has struggled at or near the bottom of the leaderboard throughout the season, and his pro partner, Peta Murgatroyd, seemed surprised that they made it to the finals.
Janel Parrish and Valentin Chmerkovskiy won immunity after earning a perfect score for their contemporary routine on Nov. 3, so they were safe from elimination Monday night. Five others stars return on Nov. 17 to vie for a spot in the finals. This is the 19th season of program.
Alfonso Ribeiro: Judges all loved the actor’s smooth foxtrot. Head judge Len Goodman said the routine was full of razzmatazz. “What a way to start the night! Fantastic!” he said. Julianne Hough told Ribeiro that he was elegant and vibrant, and Carrie Ann Inaba believed it was “excellent,” although she felt the actor could do even more. Bruno Tonioli proclaimed it “brilliant.” Ribeiro earned a 10 and three 9s for a total of 37 out of a possible 40 points.
Tommy Chong: Chong, who was surprised to learn tonight that he had made it to the semifinals, earned praise for his Viennese waltz. Hough told the 76-year-old that he turned in “a proper Viennese waltz,” and while Tonioli said there were “a few tricky moments,” he said Chong was watchable. Inaba said Chong’s appeal was due to his less is more approach. “There’s an elegance to the way you perform that isn’t about showing off or overdoing. It’s staying within what is possible for you and making everybody else believe in that …,” she said. Added Goodman: “From one old geezer to another old geezer, you are my hero. Well done!” Chong earned 29 points.
The judges said they observed a greater level of confidence from Thompson when she performed her samba. “You’ve got it, my darling,” Tonioli told her, and Inaba agreed, telling her she looked amazing in her tiger-themed costume. Goodman thought it was “terrific,” telling Thompson she “put the ‘sin’ in syncopation,” and while Hough said the actress’ movements needed to be more grounded, she thought Thompson was “still fierce.” Thompson earned 34 points.
Bethany Mota: The YouTube star’s Viennese waltz impressed the judges, including Inaba, who said it was “absolutely stunning.” Hough called it “beautiful,” and Tonioli said it was “lyrical, fluid, flowing and honestly emotive.” Goodman added: “I wasn’t totally transported to Old Vienna, but I was close. I was in Austria.” Mota earned 36 points.
Sadie Robertson: Judges acknowledged that the routine choreographed for the “Duck Dynasty” star’s jive was tough, and they saw her struggle. Inaba said Robertson appeared to have trouble with the rapid kicks and flick in the first part of her routine, but she commended her for rallying in the second half. Goodman loved the dance content, and while he noted that the kicks and flicks could have been a little tighter, he said he thought the routine was terrific. Tonioli said Robertson was to be commended for even attempting such a difficult routine, and Hough said it wasn’t her favorite dance. Robertson earned 33 points.
Janel Parrish: Despite a small stumble from her pro partner, Val Chmerkovskiy, the actress’ quickstep earned rave reviews from the judges. Inaba and Hough believed it was the best performance of the night. Tonioli said that, apart from the “little mishap,” the routine was almost flawless. Goodman said the routine had all the key elements of a quickstep. Parrish earned 38 points.
Alfonso Ribeiro, Witney Carson and Lindsay Arnold: The trio’s dynamic drew cheers of appreciation from the audience and Inaba stood to applaud. “Two syllables: Da-yam! That was insane,” she said. The other judges were equally appreciative. While Goodman wasn’t a fan of the song (DJ Snake and Lil Jon’s “Turn Down for What”) he said he was a fan of the routine. An enthusiastic Tonioli said the routine was reminiscent of a gothic ringmaster chasing space vixen, and Hough added: “Nailed it! That was amazing.” Ribeiro earned four 10s for 40 points, the first perfect score of the night.
Tommy Chong, Peta Murgatroyd and Sharna Burgess: Chong and his two partners’ mile high club-inspired samba had Tonioli and Hough doubling over with laughter. “I’m not sure about the samba but the service was first class,” Tonioli said. Added Goodman: “Well I fly back to London after the show tonight and I’m changing my ticket to Chong Air,” while Inaba battled giggles before saying. “I don’t know what to say. That was good entertainment man … I loved every second of that number.” Chong earned 28 points.
Lea Thompson, Artem Chigvintsev and Henry Byalikov: Judges praised the actress’ paso doble. Tonioli told Thompson she “held it under control,” and Inaba said she felt Thompson’s confidence. “You killed it,” she said. Goodman liked that Thompson’s two partners made her the focal point of the routine, and Hough called it a “job well done.” Thompson earned 37 points.
Bethany Mota, Derek Hough and Tony Dovolani: Tonioli liked that Mota’s Argentine tango had all the “aggressive rawness of rock and roll,” and Hough – the sister of Mota’s pro partner, called the routine “fierce,” adding that it showcased a different side of her personality. Goodman thought Mota’s transitions from dancing with Hough to Dovolani were “seamless,” but Inaba wasn’t as bowled over as her fellow judges were. While she loved the performance, she said she wanted to see a closer connection between Mota and her partners as is typical of the style of dance. Goodman and Hough disagreed with her. Mota earned 38 points.
Sadie Robertson, Mark Ballas and Emma Slater: At the end of her foxtrot Robertson confessed to co-host Tom Bergeron that she forgot the last part of her routine and he softly told her, softly, that the judges might not have noticed. It appears they didn’t hear her comment to Bergeron – and they certainly didn’t notice if she forgot the end of her routine and had to improvise, heaping high praise upon the 17-year-old reality TV star. “I tell you, that is the best trio of the night … fantastic!” Goodman said. Hough told Robertson she did “everything perfect,” while Tonioli called her “movie-star stunning.” Robertson earned four 10s for a total of 40 points.
Janel Parrish, Valentin Chmerkovskiy and Keo Motsepe: The tribal-inspired salsa won judges over. Tonioli called Parrish the “season 19 jungle queen,” and Inaba said Parrish had star quality. Goodman and Hough both said they would have liked to see more salsa content, but they, too, commended the routine highly. Parrish earned 39 points.
Tonight’s Scores (Individual Routine; Trio Dance. Total)
Alfonso Ribeiro and Witney Carson: 37; 40. Total: 77
Bethany Mota and Derek Hough: 36; 38. Total: 74
Sadie Robertson and Mark Ballas: 33; 40. Total: 73
Lea Thompson and Artem Chigvintsev: 34; 37. Total: 71 (Thompson was voted off tonight.)
Janel Parrish and Valentin Chmerkovskiy: 38; 39. Total: 77
Tommy Chong and Peta Murgatroyd: 29; 28. Total: 57