This article contains spoilers for the Nov. 7 episode of “Dancing With the Stars”
Music Video Night on Tuesday’s “Dancing With the Stars” featured a scorching Cha Cha set to Britney Spears’ “I’m a Slave 4 U,” by Ariana Madix, who said she knew the choreography by heart since she spent hours practicing it in her bedroom when she was young.
Guest judge Paul Abdul, who gave her a 10, was generous with both her praise and her scores, raving, “You channeled Britney Spears seamlessly… I can’t take my eyes off of you.”
Tonioli quipped, “Hit me Ariana, one more time!” but asked the “Vanderpump Rules” star to work on her footwork. Madix said she could “die happy” after “living out my pop star Britney dreams ” The reality star earned 37, the best solo dance score of the evening.
Despite ending the night with the second highest score, the celebrity going home in Week 7 was social media star Lele Pons, who said she was “so grateful” to be part of the competition. She and partner Brandon Armstrong performed a hip-shaking Salsa to “Whenever, Wherever” by Shakira that earned her 8s from the regular judges and a 9 from Abdul.
Marvel star Xochitl Gomez tied with Madix at the top of the leaderboard after group dances set to “Gangnam Style” and Backstreet Boys’ “Everybody” brought in extra points. The actress’ first dance was a Jazz routine to “Hollaback Girl” by Gwen Stefani. Abdul raved that her pairing with Val Chmerkovskiy is “the most provocative and surprising partnerships in this ballroom.”
Judge Derek Hough told many of the contestants, including Jason Mraz, whose Jazz routine to a-ha’s “Take on Me” earned a 10 from Abdul, that they needed to bring more at this stage of the competition. Despite his criticisms, Hough told the singer that “he had what it takes to go far in this competition.”
Alyson Hannigan and Sasha Farber performed an energetic Quickstep to Christina Aguilera’s “Candyman” that earned the pair their first 9 and a total score of 33. Hough stood up to exclaim, “That was your best dance yet!” Abdul praised the actress for her “formidable power and sweetness,” while Tonioli was pleased to see “a proper Quickstep.”
“Bachelorette” star Charity Lawson and Artem Chigvintsev performed a Jazz routine to “All For You” by Janet Jackson. Hough said it was “pretty” and “precise” but that she needed more energy. Abdul added, “If you can step into your power a little bit more, you can be a frontrunner.” The dance earned all 8s for a total of 32.
“The Brady Bunch” actor Barry Williams and Peta Murgatroyd performed a Quickstep to Elton John’s 1983 hit “I’m Still Standing.” Tonioli, who danced in the beach-set original video, joked that the actor should also have worn a bathing suit for the routine. Williams, who earned a score of 28, said “It’s never too late to take on challenges and make your dreams come true.” Despite low scores, he was saved by viewer votes.
Reality TV star Harry Jowsey and Rylee Arnold performed a Jazz routine to “It’s Gonna Be Me” by NSYNC. Lance Bass, who competed on Season 7 of DWTS, stopped by rehearsals for a pep talk. The dance earned all 6s, but Jowsey was praised for his energy in the group dance to “Gangnam Style,” which earned the season’s first perfect score.
The “Gangnam Style” team earned 40 points for Lawson, Pons, Jowsey and Gomez. After that, Madix, Williams, Hannigan and Mraz got suitably gothic for The Backstreet Boys’ “Everybody (Backstreet’s Back),” with a rehearsal overseen by the band’s AJ McLean.
Since Madix was at the top of the leaderboard after the first round, she will not have to compete in next week’s dance off. And her bonus points will be applied to next week. The reality star’s performances come after she spent four days at BravoCon and had to practice in the evenings after a full day’s schedule.
LEADERBOARD WEEK 7
Judges’ Scores for Solo Dances
Ariana Madix and Pasha Pashkov: 37/40
Jason Mraz and Daniella Karagach: 35/40
Xochitl Gomez and Val Chmerkovskiy: 34/40
Lele Pons and Brandon Armstrong: 33/40 [Eliminated]
Alyson Hannigan and Sasha Farber: 33/40
Charity Lawson and Artem Chigvintsev: 32/40
Barry Williams and Peta Murgatroyd: 28/40
Harry Jowsey and Rylee Arnold: 24/40
Total Scores After Team Dances
Ariana Madix and Pasha Pashko: 74
Xochitl Gomez and Val Chmerkovskiy: 74
Lele Pons and Brandon Armstrong: 73 [Eliminated]
Charity Lawson and Artem Chigvintsev: 72
Jason Mraz and Daniella Karagach: 72
Alyson Hannigan and Sasha Farber: 70
Barry Williams and Peta Murgatroyd: 65
Harry Jowsey and Rylee Arnold: 64
“Dancing With the Stars” airs live on Tuesdays on ABC and streams on Disney+ in local time zones and the next day on Hulu.