by EMILY BEZERRA Staff Writer
“Dancing with the Stars” wrapped up its 16th season, crowning country star Kellie Pickler and her pro-partner Derek Hough as the winners.
DWTS is a hit reality dance competition in which pairs of dancers compete, performing weekly routines. These duos include one professional dancer and one celebrity, or “star.”
Hosts Tom Bergeron and Brooke Burke Charvet returned for season 16, along with judges Len Goodman, Bruno Toniolo, and Carrie Ann Inaba.
To determine the winner of DWTS, the finalists had to perform an “instant routine”, or routine they learn in less than an hour prior to hitting the dance floor.
This is the fourth mirrored-trophy Hough has won from the show, claiming he has a “family” of them at home. However, it is Pickler’s first time winning a reality competition.
Pickler is a famous country singer who gained her fame from appearing in season five of “American Idol” and finishing in sixth place.
Disney Channel star Zendaya Coleman and her partner Valentin Chmerkovskiy won second place in a very close race against Pickler and Hough.
“I’m very proud and very happy and I get to leave here with an amazing experience,” Coleman told Charvet of her experience on DWTS.
Third runner-up was professional football player Jacoby Jones and partner Karina Smirnoff.
“Out of all my training, I have never had a woman push me,” Jones said of his partner Smirnoff.
To the surprise of audiences everywhere, US Olympic gymnast Aly Raisman was the first to be eliminated of the finalists, coming in fourth place with partner Mark Ballas.
“I was really surprised that Aly Raisman wasn’t in the top three. She kinda had an unfair advantage though, being a gymnast and all,” says sophomore Brina Haugland.
The first couple to leave this season was Olympic figure skater Dorothy Hamill and partner Tristan MacManus. However, they were not eliminated, but withdrawn from the competition due to a spine issue Hamill encountered.
The first to be eliminated was country music singer Wyona Judd and partner Tony Dovolani.
Next was reality TV star Lisa Vanderpump and partner Gleb Savchenko.
Third was comedian/actor D.L. Hughley and partner Cheryl Burke.
Fourth was professional boxer Victor Ortiz and partner Lindsay Arnold.
Fifth was actor/comedian Andy Dick and partner Sharna Burgess.
Sixth was “The Bachelor” star Sean Lowe and partner partner Peta Mergatroyd.
Seventh was soap-opera actor Ingo Rademacher and partner Kym Johnson.
It was a season of glitz and glamour and fresh new faces. However, it stirred up some controversy when it seemed certain celebrities had unfair advantages. For example, Coleman’s role as lead on the Disney Channel dance show “Shake it Up” gave her plenty of dance experience to use to her advantage. It also seems a little unfair that Olympic gymnasts participated in the competition, considering their exceptional coordination.
“Zendaya is basically a professional dancer. If you watch her on ‘Shake it Up’ she’s an amazing dancer. It’s definitely unfair,” says sophomore Melanie Conlon.
Nonetheless, it was one of the show’s best seasons so far.