Recap: Dancing with the Stars Season 21

Well, it’s still up in the air on who’s going to take home the mirror ball trophy this season, but after tonight’s premiere of  Dancing with the Stars Season 21, we definitely have a better idea of who the top contenders could be.

Tamar Braxton, Nick Carter, Bindi Irwin and both Alexa and Carlos PenaVega all turned out great performances for their first dances of the season.  Carter took the top score of the night, earning 24 out of 30.

With her “The Real” family in the audience to cheer her on, Braxton seemed to take on her quick step dance with ease and fantastic energy..

The judges even thought Braxton had a significant start to the 10 week competition, scoring the performance a 23 out of 30.

Judge Bruno Tonioli said he was impressed with how Braxton kept up with the pace of the quick step, and even though it’s only week one, she had a brilliant beginning.

Carrie Ann Inaba said Braxton blew her away and noted she performed one of the hardest dances of the competition already.

With the first dance under their belt, it looks like Braxton and partner Val Chmerkovskiy will be ones to watch.

Performing to her own song, “I Feel You,” Chaka Khan and pro dancer Keo Motsepe had a slow start to their partnership.

But Khan kept a smile on her face throughout her entire performance.

Inaba said it seemed as though Khan had forgotten some of the dance steps, but it looked like she was having fun.

The judges gave Khan a 13 out of 30, one of the lowest scores of the night.

She said she agreed with the judges’ criticism and explained she’s open to everything she gets with training.

“I’m just learning,” she said.

If you missed the premiere of “DWTS” start to Season 21, catch the recap of the performances Tuesday night with “Dancing with the Stars: First Dances” on ABC at 9/8c.

Who do you think will be first to lose their dance card on Sept. 22?  Tell us in comments!


Jessica Wenck is a writer and multimedia journalist who has been featured in publications including, The Press Enterprise and  She is addicted to coffee and is an entertainment junkie with a specialty in TV and film.  Follow her on Twitter.