"Dancing With the Stars" fans aren't the only ones who wonder just what Len Goodman and his fellow judges could possibly be thinking when they score certain all-star acts the way that they do. In fact, even ballroom emcee Tom Bergeron, who's seen every step and spin of the season up close, understands where fans are coming from with their concerns.
During a recent chat with the Emmy-winning host, we asked him if he ever finds himself disagreeing with the panel's post-dance critiques.
"Yes, I do!" Bergeron assured The Clicker. "And I would just, as a caveat, say they're looking at different things than I'm looking at. I couldn't critique the dance from a technical standpoint. I can only look at it from whether it moves or doesn't move me. I critique it pretty much like a layman would. But yeah, there are times I think, 'Really? That's all they're getting? But the other couple got this score for that!' Definitely. I'm probably not much different from you watching at home when you occasionally find yourself scratching your head."
But judges' scores aside, Bergeron has his own favorites for the season so far, the ones he thinks could go all the way. Just don't expect him to name names.
"Yeah, I never really give names, because that's not fair to the couples that I think don't have a snowball's chance in hell," he said with a laugh. "And also, I'm really not good at predicting."
Not even when it comes to predicting how the star-studded batch of contenders could up their ballroom games.
"Looking at how this past week went, and the quality of the dancing (in) week three, I don't know what they can do to top what we're seeing already," Bergeron said. "And I think that's where us throwing them a little off balance is going to make it even more interesting."
The first efforts to throw the all-stars off balance started last week, when each pair was put in charge of picking out a not-so-ballroom-friendly dance style for fellow competitors. On Monday night, the curveballs continue with the addition of guest judge Paula Abdul. And according to Bergeron, "some other things up the producers' sleeves" are still to come.
Of course, not every act needs a nudge from producers to get thrown off balance. Last week viewers saw Bristol Palin lose her cool with pro partner Mark Ballas, as she accused him of preferring other past partners and not trying his hardest this season with her. It was an accusation Bergeron felt was unfounded.
"I can't base it on being ... in the rehearsal, only on knowing Mark," he said of the incident. "And I think calling into question Mark's commitment based on what I know of him, was unfair."
See how fair the ballroom bash is this week when the all-stars hit the floor on Monday night on ABC, and be sure to join Anna Chan and fellow "DWTS" fans for a live chat during the show. It's starts at 8 p.m. ET -- sign up for a reminder!
What do you think of the judges' critiques so far this season? Share your thoughts on our Facebook page.
- Kelly Monaco: I cursed 'Dancing With the Stars' pro Cheryl Burke for her dance pick
- Bristol Palin: Brother doesn't get why I'm doing 'Dancing With the Stars' again
- Mark Ballas: Argument with Bristol Palin was a 45-minute talk
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