Dancing With the Stars announced a big change to the way the show decides who will be sent home each week. At the start of Monday night's episode, hosts Tom Bergeron and Erin Andrews revealed that the judges finally got their own "save" button. They will be allowed to pick one of the bottom two couples facing elimination at the end of the episode.
This is the first time the judges will have this big a say in who goes home. Before, the eliminated couples were decided based on a combination of judge's scores and their vote totals from viewers at home.
This rule change was likely a reaction to Bobby Bones' controversial victory last season. Although he got low scores from the judges consistently, the country music radio host's huge fan base helped him win the Mirrorball trophy with Sharna Burgess last year.
Bones won last season even though he only had an average score of 22.8/30 for the whole year. That was far below Juan Pablo Pablo Di Pace, who did not even make it to the final, despite multiple perfect scores.
Bergeron even joked about Bones' win during last week's episode when the radio host made an appearance to support Lauren Alaina.
"She played country night," Bones said. "And I was like, 'I love Tom. I love [judge] Bruno [Tonioli]. I love all the people'... and I was like, 'You have to do it' because she's so loveable. And if people will vote for me, they'll love Lauren!"
"What, there was no controversy about that," Bergeron joked. "What are you talking about?"
The rule change impressed some viewers.
Whoa! New twists and new dances? This could change everything. #DWTS— David Lartey (@DLartey94) September 24, 2019
Cool change the judges get to save one couple #DWTS— Jasmine Jones (@jasminejones102) September 24, 2019
They really don’t want another Bobby Bones situation (though to be fair, the UK has done this for a few years, albeit they can deadlock since they have 4 judges)..If Vote for the Worst was still around, they’d have a field day with this..— David Wilson (@oneweaklink) September 24, 2019
lol i wonder why this rule change this season with these contestants. impossible to know.— pastyskin mcirishman (@thepubprobably) September 24, 2019
New episodes of Dancing With The Stars air Mondays at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.
Photo credit: ABC