'Dancing With The Stars: Juniors': Were the judges extra strict on Ariana Greenblatt's 'Halloween Night' performance?
With impeccable intensity to their dance to 'Ways to Be Wicked' from 'Descendants 2', the audience and viewers thought Ariana did a brilliant job. But the judges begged to differ
The fact that there was no 'Dancing With The Stars: Juniors' this week brought to light a couple of things that might have been slightly overlooked with Alana 'Honey Boo Boo' Thompson's elimination last week. While it was definitely heartbreaking to see her break down in tears right after it was announced at the end of the last previous 'Halloween Night' themed episode that she would be heading home, fans and followers also threw light on yet another talent on the show — Ariana Greenblatt. Although she has been a consistently remarkable performer so far, she may have been treated with unnecessary strictness for her quite impressive pasodoble. And now, the question is whether this performance of Ariana's deserves to earn her, her personal lowest score so far, or whether the judges were just being extra strict?
Ariana — also known for her role as young Gamorah in this year's biggest crossover film, 'Avengers: Infinity War' — has been quite promising since day one of the debut season of 'DWTS: Juniors'. Paired with Artyon Celestine, and under their mentor Brandon Armstrong's strict training, she has only progressed with each episode. So last week, when Brandon cracked the whip for the two kids' then-upcoming pasodoble, it was a sure shot that despite thinking it sounds like "Picasso", Ariana would get the job done to perfection when it came to the dance.
With impeccable intensity to their dance to 'Ways to Be Wicked' from the Disney Channel musical 'Descendants 2', the audience and viewers thought Ariana did a brilliant job. But the judges begged to differ. While Adam Rippon wanted to see more emotional range from the tiny-tot, Mandy Moore felt Ariana needed to challenge herself more.
Even Val Chmerkovskiy, original DWTS pro-dancer, felt there needed to be more content choreography-wise in Ariana's performance. And thus, with two seven's and one eight, Ariana ended up with just 22 out of 30 on the leaderboard for the night.
Now, this might seem a solid score, but not really, by the standards of the star-kid who's so used to earning in the later 20s out of 30. Also, her score was just one point ahead of Honey Boo Boo's and Akash Vukoti's — both of whom shared the bottom of the leaderboard with 21 out of 30. Incidentally enough, despite Ariana having a far more difficult choreography, both she and Honey Boo Boo were given the same scores by Adam and Val, and that is just a tad bit fishy.
But then again, as Mandy had mentioned in one of the past episodes, the judges do seem to hold Ariana is a certain standard higher than some of the other kids when it came to potential and dancing skills. And they have some pretty solid reason to do that too, as Ariana had topped the leaderboard for the first two weeks into the competition, and even though that didn't follow suit in week three, she made up for it by earning her personal highest score that week.
Sadly, her luck didn't favor her this week, and she ended up getting her first sevens from the judges individually too, alongside her lowest score this season. But luckily there's more of her wonderful performances to look forward to as 'DWTS: Juniors' returns coming Sunday at 8 pm ET/PT.