Photo Credit: ABC
This week's Dancing with the Stars competition belonged to J.R. Martinez and Karina Smirnoff, who set the bar at a season high by earning two perfect scores on Monday night. So it was no surprise that the dancing duo easily sailed through to the semifinals.
But one couple had to go home -- and it was the two at the bottom of the leader board, Nancy Grace and Tristan MacManus and Rob Kardashian and Cheryl Burke, who ended up battling for a shot at the final four.
So did the Kardashian family's publicity machine help save younger brother Rob from elimination again? Yes! For once, there were no surprises. The couple with the week's lowest judges' score, Grace and MacManus, was voted out of the ballroom. Unlike many of her fellow female contestants, the HLN news anchor stayed remarkably stoic about her loss and made sure to express her gratitude where it was due.
"I'm so proud, but I really cannot take the credit, it's been all Tristan from the get go," Grace, 52, said of her professional dancing partner. "The whole crew at Dancing with the Stars, my family, who flew out here to take care of my twins so I could dance, all of you -- and especially to you, Tristan, thank you!"
MacManus, 29, seemed humble when faced with Grace's praise. Considering this was the handsome Irishman's first season with a celebrity partner, it was a smashing success for him and Grace -- the oldest contestant of the season -- to survive one week shy of the semifinals.
"We've had a blast. Thanks for being very welcoming to me and also to Nancy. We really, really had a fun time," MacManus added. "We can't be disappointed to make it this far. From the start we said to each other, 'It's not about being the best but just about doing our best,' and I think that's what we did."
The eighth elimination allows Kardashian and Burke to join Hope Solo and Maksim Chmerkovskiy, Ricki Lake and Derek Hough, and leader board champions J.R. Martinez and Karina Smirnoff to compete in next week's crucial semifinals.
Who will reign supreme and waltz away with the Mirrorball trophy?
Watch Nancy and Tristan's last tango below: