-- It was “Muy Caliente Monday” on “Dancing With the Stars” last night as guest judge Pitbull joined in on the fun, heating things up with the nine remaining contestants as they duked it out on the dance floor in this Latin-themed sixth week of the competition.
Unfortunately for actor Jonathan Bennett, however, his scores weren’t sizzling enough to keep him around for another week. Bennett and his professional partner, Allison Holker, were eliminated from the competition tonight.
“That’s OK,” he told Holker as he hugged her on the dance floor after learning the news.
Bennett and Holker appeared on "Good Morning America" this morning to talk about their elimination and time on the show.
"The whole experience is the most fun and most exhausting thing you'll ever do," Bennett said on "GMA." "I came on the show to bring some light back into my life and feel alive again after losing my parents, and I did that because of Allison and the show, and I'm so happy."
Bennett's father passed away this past April of brain cancer, and he was a big fan of the show.
“Here’s the thing,” Bennett explained after being eliminated. “I came here to do this show to have fun and just have a really great experience and to bring life back into my life, and that’s what I did. I can’t thank Allison enough. I had the best time.”
Holker agreed, telling host Tom Bergeron, “I’m so proud of him.”
"I didn’t know what to expect being a first time pro, but I couldn’t ask for a better partner," she added on "GMA." "He came into rehearsals every day smiling. He really wanted to be there and made my life so much easier and it was just a pleasure to work with him."
With head judge Len Goodman absent from the judges’ panel this week, global music sensation Pitbull was tonight’s guest judge. The singer opened the show with his hit song, “Fireball.”
Former contestant and actress Leah Remini also helped host in Erin Andrews’ absence while she’s in Kansas City covering the World Series.
Returning to compete next week are actors Antonio Sabato Jr. and Alfonso Ribeiro, Lea Thompson and fellow actress Janel Parrish, NASCAR racing legend Michael Waltrip, reality TV star Sadie Robertson, YouTube beauty guru Bethany Mota and comedian Tommy Chong.
The stars will compete every week for scores from the judges as well as votes from viewers. The star with the lowest combined total will be eliminated each week until the final three compete for the trophy.
Last Night’s Routines:
Jonathan Bennett: The actor danced a “Men in Black”-inspired jazz routine to Pitbull’s “Back in Time.” He and professional partner Allison Holker turned up the heat getting things started as the first performers of the night. “We need to see improvement and see a range, and that was exactly what that was,” said judge Julianne Hough, who immediately gave Bennett a big hug across the judges’ table. “The best part about you is your resilience,” added judge Carrie Ann Inaba. “I think this was your best dance so far.” Guest judge Pitbull joked, “You look just like Will Smith.” The actor earned 8s across the board for a total of 32 points.
Janel Parrish: Janel Parrish and professional partner Val Chmerkovskiy spiced things up on the dance floor tonight with their samba to a song by the legendary Celia Cruz. “You’re such a phenomenal performer because you perform from your entire body,” Inaba told Parrish. “But tonight I felt like you were a bit off balance.” Pitbull couldn’t help but feel the passion was missing from their performance. “I don’t know [anything] about ballroom dancing, but I know a lot about passion,” he explained. “And I didn’t feel the passion.” Hough was very complimentary of the performance, however. “The choreography and the content was almost like a competition routine,” she said. “So I want to commend you. Well done, I thought it was great.” Judges awarded Parrish a total of 33 points.
Tommy Chong: Tommy Chong did a foxy foxtrot to Earth, Wind & Fire’s “September” with professional partner Peta Murgatroyd. “I just want to say that I think you could be in this competition for a long time. That was so awesome,” said Hough. Inaba agreed, noting she was “so happy to see” that Chong was “back in great form.” Pitbull, who called Chong “The most interesting man in the world,” really enjoyed their routine on the dance floor saying, “It wasn’t perfect, but it was fun.” Looks like Chong and Murgatroyd’s time in the sweat lodge was just what they needed to recharge themselves for a night of rave reviews. The actor received 7s across the board for a total of 28 points.
Antonio Sabato Jr.: Actor Antonio Sabato Jr. and his professional partner Cheryl Burke steamed things up with a salsa dance to Enrique Iglesias’ “Bailando.” Despite it being a tough week for Burke as she was also dealing with her father’s recent medical problems, the partners pulled through earning decent remarks from the judges. “You really took me back to the streets of old Havana,” explained judge Bruno Tonioli. “You did a fantastic job of creating the perfect atmosphere, but you’ve got to learn to transfer the weight so you get the hips going.” Inaba agreed that Sabato Jr. was a bit stiff on the dance floor, but noted that his “trajectory of growth is consistent” which means he’s slowly and surely improving. But, she added, “You’ve got to let the music move you.” Judges awarded the actor all 7s, for a total of 28 points.
Sadie Robertson: The reality star danced a rumba to Rihanna’s “Diamonds” with her professional partner Mark Ballas. The partners attempted to keep the traditionally passionate dance style as conservative as possible, so as to respect Robertson’s Christian values. “It felt really good, but I’m glad to get the rumba over with,” Robertson said tonight after her performance. “I wanted to find the perfect balance of being appropriate while still doing the perfect dance,” added Ballas. The judges felt they did an excellent job of maintaining that balance. Inaba called it “exceptionally gorgeous and age appropriate.” Tonioli told Robertson, “You really are a sparkling little jewel of a dancer,” adding however, “The rumba needs a continuous motion and at times it was a bit jagged, but mostly well done.” Pitbull said, “It was simple, but it was powerful.” The “gorgeous” routine earned Robertson a whopping 35 out of 40 points.
Lea Thompson: Actress Lea Thompson and her professional partner Artem Chigvintsev spiced up the dance floor with their salsa to Pitbull’s “Sexy People.” Pitbull joked with the shirtless Chigvintsev saying, “I didn’t know Jean-Claude Van Damme could dance that good, man. It was sexy and that’s what I’m talking about.” Inaba, on the other hand, felt disappointed with their performance saying, “I think you should stay to your strengths. You play your game and stay on track.” Hough agreed that Thompson seemed to lack confidence tonight, instead worrying too much about her fellow competitor, Alfonso Ribeiro. “I have always thought from day one you are the girl to beat,” said Hough. “Tonight though, I felt like you needed to trust your partner and trust yourself. At the end of the day, that’s all you can control.” Judges awarded Thompson a total of 32 out of 40 points.
Michael Waltrip: NASCAR driver Michael Waltrip and Emma Slater danced a sensual Argentine tango to Pitbull’s “Give Me Everything,” and the judges loved it, calling the choreography “beautiful.” Inaba told Waltrip “This is what a champion is made out of,” adding, “You were composed, you were elegant and you actually tried to really dance.” Pitbull said he was feeling badly for the racing legend at first, but then told him, “You did a great job and I see that you got so much into the moment you tried to sneak a kiss at the end.” Without missing a beat, Waltrip quipped back, “I felt like that was a Mr. Worldwide move.” Tonioli felt this performance was a “great improvement.” Waltrip earned two 8s and two 7s from the judges for a total of 30 out of 40 points, his highest score this season.
Bethany Mota: YouTube star Bethany Mota danced a sensational tango to “Jealous” by Chromeo with professional partner Derek Hough. The judges raved that the performance was “pure tango.” Hough explained, “There was no fluff. It was a pure, honest, good tango. It was everything a tango should be.” Tonioli couldn’t agree more, adding, “No messing around. [It was] straight down the line pure ballroom.” And Inaba said she was “blown away,” telling Mota, “that was ridiculous.” The judges awarded Mota 9s across the board, for a total of 36 out of 40 points.
Alfonso Ribeiro: Actor Alfonso Ribeiro, despite a painful groin injury, managed to pull through with a vivacious salsa performance to Jennifer Lopez and Pitbull’s “Booty” alongside his professional partner, Witney Carson. Ribeiro’s wiggling hips and gyrating derriere had the judges all excited, especially Tonioli, who told the competitors, “The rhythm’s got me. I could have danced all night.” Inaba even called Ribeiro over to the judges’ table just so she could spank him 10 times, displaying her enthusiasm. “That’s how you give that spice,” said Pitbull, as he recreated some of the couple’s moves. “That’s what I’m talking about.” The actor earned three 10s and one 9 for a total of 39 points.