Artem Chigvintsev is speaking out after his Week 8 performance with celebrity partner Kaitlyn Bristowe earned them even more critiques from Dancing With the Stars judge Carrie Ann Inaba. While their jive to "Don't Stop Me Now" by Queen earned them a score of 25 out of a possible 30 points, Inaba had again offered a more critical take, explaining that while she thought this was one of the Bachelorette alum's "best performances" and that she had come back "grace and energy" after last week, she was "a little torn right now" as there was an issue with one of Bristowe's flips, which Inaba believed was actually a lift.
For Chigvintsev, the continued critiques seem to be more than just the typical remarks from the judges and are now instead beginning to feel "a little personal." Speaking with Entertainment Tonight shortly after Selling Sunset star Chrishell Stause and her partner Gleb Savchenko were eliminated from the competition, Chigvintsev said that he feels "it's definitely, maybe not a different standard, but I feel like it's different expectations." He said that "watching back the dance itself, it's like, 'Oh, you can kick sharper!' Well, I can say that about everybody who dances on the show today. I don't know. It's really odd."
Chigvintsev also expressed concern that Inaba's continued critiques could impact his partner's performances and get her spirit down, stating, "I was literally wanting to have ear muffs and put it on top of [Kaitlyn's] head." He told ET that "at this point right now we just feel like we're never going to make her happy" and admitted that "it feels really discouraging, in a sense, to come back next week."
Inaba's Monday night critique marked just the latest example of her, what some believe to be, hypercritical viewpoint of Bristowe and Chigvintsev's performances throughout Season 29. Following their Week 7 performance – a Cruella de Vil-inspired Paso Doble that earned the pair a 24/30 – Inaba said that she felt as though Bristowe "gave up" and lost her "spirit" on the dance floor.
Bristowe, addressing the critiques, said that she would just like "to know where it comes from. Is it from a place where you believe in us and you want us to do better?" she asks. "Is it coming from a place of, 'I was hard on Hannah [Brown] and you're another Bachelor girl'? Where is it coming from and how are we supposed to take it and bring it into our next rehearsal?"
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