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Dancing With the Stars Season 20 Premiere Recap: Did Rumer Willis, Chris Soules, Riker Lynch Own the Ballroom?

Dancing With The Stars Cast
How did the celebs perform in the Dancing With the Stars season 20 premiere?

Cha cha!

Dancing With the Stars season 20 has twirled into our living rooms, bringing with it plenty of flawed pirouettes and fabulous personalities. The contestants range in age from 14 to 70 and include (but are not limited to) a war hero, an Olympian, a Shark, a Bachelor, and a girl who really, really loves cheeseburgers.

Related: PHOTOS: DWTS season 20 celebs and their partners

To fully honor the diversity of the cast, Us Weekly has awarded each couple with a senior superlative (you know, those peer-voted awards high school seniors receive in their yearbooks) along with summaries of their first performances — and first critiques.

So, which couple is Most Likely to Succeed at winning the coveted Mirrorball Trophy? As is so often the case in both high school and beyond: The answer may surprise you.

Willow Shields and Mark Ballas: Most Spirited

willow shields and mark ballas
Actress Willow Shields is partnered with pro Mark Ballas on Dancing With the Stars season 20.

Dance: Cha Cha

First Impression: At 14, Willow is the youngest contestant not only of the season, but also in the history of the show. While her introduction video largely focused on her age, once she started dancing, the judges were focused on something else entirely: her spunk. Len Goodman described her as “a glass of Alka-Seltzer: sparkling, bubbling, refreshing and makes you feel good,” while Bruno Tonioli praised her for getting “grumpy old Len” to put a smile on his face. True, her technique needs work, but her attitude doesn’t.

Score: 25 out of 40

Robert Herjavec and Kym Johnson: Cutest Couple

Robert Herjavec and Kym Johnson
Shark Tank investor Robert Herjavec is partnered with Kym Johnson on Dancing With the Stars season 20.

Dance: Cha Cha

First Impression: Yes, the newly single Shark Tank star’s video showed him flashing his private plane and Ferrari to Kym (who didn’t seem to mind), and yes, he had a gang of backup dancers pouring money from the ceiling during his performance, but none of that proved to be what impressed the judges. “I was not expecting that,” Julianne Hough mused through a stunned expression after he and Kym finished their dance. “You looked like you had the time of your life.”

Score: 28 out of 40

Related: PHOTOS: Behind the scenes of DWTS

Riker Lynch and Allison Holker: Class Clown

Riker Lynch and Allison Holker
Actor and musician Riker Lynch is partnered with pro Allison Holker on Dancing With the Stars season 20.

Dance: Jive

First Impression: Lynch proved that he’s that unusual combination of excellent dancer and unapologetic goofball. Riker and Allison wowed the judges, inspiring Bruno to declare that their performance had “the coolest vibe I’ve seen since I saw my friend Billy Idol.” Perhaps Bruno missed the video in which Riker announced that his burp “tasted like peanut butter” or confessed to Allison, “I sweat like, a lot.”

Score: 31 out of 40

Charlotte McKinney and Keo Motsepe: Best Body

Charlotte McKinney and Keo Motsepe
Model Charlotte McKinney is partnered with pro Keo Motsepe on Dancing With the Stars season 20.

Dance: Jive

First Impression: Though Charlotte said, “I want to show America there’s more to me than boobs,” it’s unclear whether she succeeded. (To be fair, the fact that a “huge” portion of her practice video was filled with discussions about duct taping those suckers down probably didn’t help.) Still, even after her performance, the judges seemed focused on one thing — or should we say two? “The top half is actually really great,” Julianne noted about Charlotte’s form, while Bruno praised the Carl’s Jr. Superbowl ad star for carrying “America’s most imposing frontage.”

Score: 22 out of 40

Related: PHOTOS: Before they were on DWTS

Patti LaBelle and Artem Chigvintsev: Most Popular

Patti LaBelle and Artem Chigvintsev
Singer Patti LaBelle is partnered with pro Artem Chigvintsev on Dancing With the Stars season 20.

Dance: Foxtrot

First Impression: Everyone loves LaBelle. While her video package showed her struggling with the physical demands of practice, the music icon earned rave reviews from all of the judges on the big night. “It had such a lovely naturalness about it,” Len said. “When you dance, you are a gorgeous, graceful goddess,” Julianne added. As for the studio audience, the crowd gave LaBelle a standing ovation.

Score: 25 out of 40

Chris Soules and Witney Carson: Most Conservative

Chris Soules and Witney Carson
Bachelor Chris Soules is partnered with pro Witney Carson on Dancing With the Stars season 20.

Dance: Jive

First Impression: Soules takes his engagement very seriously. Long gone are his bachelor days filled with making out with multiple women in one day on TV. These days, Chris is committed to one Whitney and he doesn’t feel comfortable touching another — even if she happens to be his dance partner, which makes for some awkward movements. “A hurdle about getting close? You were the bachelor that made out with everyone!” Erin Andrews playfully pointed out during their post-performance chat. “I was single then,” Soules explained with an aw-shucks shrug. Still, Chris kept his head above water with the judges — especially Bruno, who called him “rugged yet totally charming.”

Score: 26 out of 40

Michael Sam and Peta Murgatroyd: Best Smile

Michael Sam and Peta Murgatroyd
Football player Michael Sam is partnered with Peta Murgatroyd on Dancing With the Stars season 20.

Dance: Cha Cha

First Impression: Like Charlotte, Michael has one standout body part. “That butt is a work of art,” Bruno declared. Still, according to Len, his footwork was “atrocious.” Carrie also warned him not to just paste a smile on his face, prompting a genuine smile from Michael … which is pretty much when everyone stopped listening to the judges and just stared at his amazing smile.

Score: 26 out of 40

Nastia Liukin and Derek Hough: Most Athletic

Nastia Liukin and Derek Hough
Gymnast Nastia Liukin is partnered with pro Derek Hough on Dancing With the Stars season 20.

Dance: Foxtrot

First Impression: “I didn’t come here to lose,” Liukin confessed in her intro video, and there’s no doubt she was telling the truth. The Olympic gymnast certainly has the credentials to take the top prize and got off to a solid start in her ballroom debut. Carrie described Nastia and Derek’s Foxtrot as a “showstopper,” and Julianne called it “explosive.” Still, though, there was room for improvement. Derek gave Nastia the wrong hand for one of their lifts (!) and Julianne warned the decorated athlete that her back flexibility sometimes gets away from her while dancing.

Score: 30 out of 40

Related: PHOTOS: DWTS hottest couples

Redfoo and Emma Slater: Best Hair

Redfoo and Emma Slater
Musician Redfoo is partnered with pro Emma Slater on Dancing With the Stars season 20.

Dance: Cha Cha

First Impression: It would be a lie to claim that anyone’s first impression of Redfoo didn’t involve his hair, but the judges were able to see beyond his personal style and evaluate his actual dancing. Bruno declared that he “loved the sparkling lunacy” of Redfoo and Emma’s performance, but described his technique as “unusual.” Still, though — that hair!

Score: 22 out of 40

Noah Galloway and Sharna Burgess: Teacher’s Pet

Noah Galloway and Sharna Burgess
Army vet Noah Galloway is partnered with Sharna Burgess on Dancing With the Stars season 20.

Dance: Cha Cha

First Impression: This man is a hero and everyone who watched him dance could see that. “You are a titan among men,” Bruno said in an uncharacteristically solemn tone. “You’re broadening my scope of what dancing looks like,” Carrie managed as her eyes misted with tears. While they admitted there is room for improvement in terms of technique, Noah clearly worked his way into the judges’ hearts.

Score: 26 out of 40

Suzanne Somers and Tony Dovolani: Best Dressed

Suzanne Somers and Tony Dovolani
Actress Suzanne Somers is partnered with pro Tony Dovolani on Dancing With the Stars season 20.

Dance: Cha Cha

First Impression: Somers has still got it. Clad in resplendent ’80s workout gear, the 68-year-old actress-turned ThighMaster queen-turned bestselling author tore up the dance floor with Tony. Bruno said their performance was “very well executed” while Carrie praised Suzanne as a “ray of sunshine in this age-obsessed society.” Somers was indeed bubbly, but her bright yellow legwarmers stole the show.

Score: 25 out of 40

Rumer Willis and Valentin Chmerkovskiy: Most Likely to Succeed

Rumer Willis and Valentin Chmerkovskiy
Actress and singer Rumer Willis is partnered with Valentin Chmerkovskiy on Dancing With the Stars season 20.
Dance: Foxtrot

First Impression: Perhaps the only contestant to come across as competitive as Liukin was Willis, who spent a lot of her video introduction in various states of frustration. “I have to relax and not put so much pressure on myself,” she mused with a face that made it seem like she wasn’t sure if she could do that. It turns out she could, and her hard work paid off. Carrie described her as a “passionate, intense, fierce competitor” and Bruno called her “powerful.” In fact, she and Valentin were declared the couple to beat by Julianne, and, just like that, Rumer went from being a dark horse to being the frontrunner.

Score: 32 out of 40

Tell Us: Who was your favorite couple in the Dancing With the Stars premiere?

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