'Dancing with the Stars Juniors' recap: Sarah Palin's grandson Tripp Palin exits in first round of elimination
The debut season of DWTS Juniors features hosts Frankie Muniz and Jordan Fisher with judges skater Adam Rippon, choreographer Mandy Moore, and DWTS pro Val Chmerkovskiy
They might be just kids, but that doesn't mean the tiny tots of 'Dancing with the Stars: Juniors' are any less than the contestants of the original adult version of the show. Debuting this Sunday, ABC's 'DWTS: Juniors' features sons and daughters of popular celebrities and despite the term 'Juniors', these kids proved to be just as much entertaining and thrilling as their adult counterparts, if not more.
Having premiered on Sunday, October 7 at 8 pm ET, the debut season of DWTS Juniors is hosted by Frankie Muniz and Jordan Fisher. Judging the participants are Olympic figure skater Adam Rippon, 'La La Land' choreographer Mandy Moore, and DWTS pro Val Chmerkovskiy. Participating this year are the following contestants: 'Honey Boo Boo' Alana Thompson, Miles Brown, Sophia Pippen, Ariana Greenblatt, Sky Brown, Mandla Morris, Hudson West, Mackenzie Ziegler, Tripp Palin, Addison Osta Smith, and Jason Maybaum.
While there were many notable moments from the premiere episode, sadly, there was also an elimination in the show. Leaving in the very first round itself were two duos - MasterChef Junior winner Addison Osta Smith and pro Lev Cameron, and Sarah Palin's grandson, Tripp Palin and pro Hailey Bills. At the same time, there were some striking performances from the night that really stood out. Here's a list of the top four performances of the night.
Mackenzie Ziegler and pro Sage Rosen (Foxtrot with mentor Gleb Savchenko)
Being one of the oldest contestants on the show, Mackenzie surely does have some added benefit to her case. Especially when it comes to handling complex choreography since the pop singer is already trained in jazz and contemporary dance. Also, her sister is SIA music video prodigy Maddie Ziegler, which is probably why Mackenzie's amazing dance skills don't really come as an absolute surprise. Score: 22/30
Miles Brown and pro Rylee Arnold (Salsa with mentor Lindsay Arnold)
For those who have missed this performance, we have two things for you - well-executed salsa tricks and sharp hip swivels. While the 'Blackish' star's energy peaked every now and then, it was easy to pass it off as premiere night jitters. Plus he's all of 13, tackling ballroom dancing like a pro! Score: 22/30
Ariana Greenblatt and pro Artyon Celestine (Cha-Cha with mentor Brandon Armstrong)
Contrary to popular belief about kids getting the debut night jitters during their performance, 'Stuck in the Middle' actress Ariana Greenblatt proved to be an absolute exception, taking over the dance floor with her composure intact for her cha-cha performance. Both the speed and the sass was impeccable when it came to the choreography. The best part? That beautiful floor spin she and Artyon pulled off. Score: 24/30
Mandla Morris and pro Brightyn Brems (Jive with mentor Cheryl Burke)
Being Stevie Wonder's son does come with certain perks. And in the case of Mandla, the perks are being blessed with an incredible sense of rhythm when it comes to swaying to the music. Despite feeling a little sluggish in the rehearsals, Mandla brought this energetic finest to the dance floor, meeting Brightyn along every step of the way of their content heavy jive. Score: 24/30
There was also the heartwarming and extremely sincere foxtrot by Akash Vukati with pro Kamri Peterson and summing up the entire experience, almost as if speaking for everyone else too, he said in his post-dance interview, he said: "[Dance] just makes you happy and basically makes you have some of the best times of your life!"