They have three more episodes to go, but Dancing With Stars might as well just hand the Mirror Ball Trophy to Adam Rippon after last night’s season premier.
Rippon’s athleticism, agility and flair and his chemistry with partner, Jenna Johnson, killed it with the studio audience and thrilled the judges. Their Cha-Cha to RuPaul’s Sissy That Walk was insanely good. That chemistry! Those hip swivels! That synchronized final leap!
The duo all eights from judges Len Goodman, Bruno Tonioli and Carrie Ann Inaba, for a score of 24, the highest of the night.
The duo’s chemistry was evident from their first meeting. Johnson:
“I’m like his fake girlfriend!”
“It’s so nice when you meet people that you just feel instantly connected to. This is just such a crazy time in my life and I feel like Jenna’s in it for a reason.”
The show’s 27th season features a diverse group of active and retired athletes, Olympians, bootballers, Basket ball players, some them of heroes, and some villains.
Tonya Harding was great, but she is still Tonya Harding; in her package she claimed:
“I was the best figure skater in the world, and then I had it taken away from me.”
Harding scored in the bottom of the night, an announcement that brought screams of “What?” and “How?” from the live audience that included Allison Janney, who won an Academy Award for her role in the Harding biopic I, Tonya.
Rippon and fellow contestant, skater Mirai Nagasu, have joked about their friendship and their competitive spirit. Rippon said that he is going to leave it all out on the dance floor. In addition to being very good friends with Nagasu, he has also helped to choreograph programs for her. Nagasu was the first U.S. female to land a triple axel at the Olympics. She was an audience favorite last night, and Rippon’s only real competition on ABC’s show.