Maksim: 'Dancing with the Stars' 16 couples decision was a mistake
By Christopher Rocchio, 10/13/2009
Maksim Chmerkovskiy claims he "wasn't surprised" Dancing with the Stars still proceeded with an elimination that resulted in his exit with celebrity partner Debi Mazar even after Top DeLay withdrew since the show's producers needed to do something to reduce the season's the large cast.
"Even though Tom DeLay withdrew, I wasn't surprised they still eliminated a couple. The show has an overwhelming number of couples," Chmerkovskiy wrote on his tvguide.com blog on Monday.
"On paper, when they decided to go with 16 couples and double eliminations, it looked great, but not in reality. There are so many of us and we've been practicing for two months, but you only see us for a minute and a half a week."
Despite DeLay's withdrawal due to stress fractures in both his feet, Mazar and Chmerkovskiy were still ousted during the third week of the competition based on a combination of their judges scores from Monday night's performance episode and home viewer votes cast immediately following the broadcast.
"Debi and I had an amazing time together and I want to go on the record that we never fought," wrote Chmerkovskiy.
"I still get asked about the 'fight' two weeks ago, but that was nothing serious. She's always hard on herself and cried and then got it together. If you watch it closely, I didn't even know what was happening."
"I know I have a reputation as a bad guy, but I'm not. I just do my job. I push, but I know when to stop," he wrote.
"It's funny because if I'm so bad, then why do people keep requesting me to be their partner? I've never made anyone cry -- not [Denise Richards] and especially not Debi! Our first meeting was: 'Hi, how are you?' 'Where are you from?' 'Brooklyn.' 'No s---! I'm from Queens, yo! Stop busting my balls!' That's her telling me! I knew right away it will be fun."
Chmerkovskiy also wrote that he feels the judges are being "harsher" this season with their scores.
"We're not judged competitively. They kind of look at the person according to the ability and potential," he explained.
"You get excited seeing somebody do stuff that you don't think they really should be doing given their background or what they look like or where they're coming from. Then you give them a higher mark than you do to somebody you think should be a good dancer, like maybe in Debi's case. A lot of people thought she had a dance background -- which she doesn't -- and maybe the judges thought they would motivate her like that."
Now that his Dancing with the Stars experience has come to an end, Chmerkovskiy said he plans to return to Las Vegas to work on his Le Reve stage show.
"My work on Le Reve has never stopped, but we're doing major things with it," he wrote.
"I'm re-choreographing some of my numbers. It was an experiment and, luckily for me, people are loving it. I'm very proud of it and now I want to go back and really put some work and effort into it because at first it was kind of like, 'Let's see if this can even survive.' So I'm very happy about that. I also want to go back on Broadway so I'm figuring that out."