Problems in the ballroom — and backstage! Dancing With the Stars has featured some incredible partners over the years, but the ABC competition series is also no stranger to fumbles over mismatched pairings.
Kim Kardashian competed on the dance series’ 7th season in 2008 alongside her pro partner, Mark Ballas. While the businesswoman has succeeded in many areas in life, she ultimately ended her DWTS run in 11th place — making her the third eliminated star.
A decade later, fellow alum Milo Manaheim recalled a conversation he had with Kardashian about her experience on the show and the advice she gave him. “So, she doesn’t like dancing as much as I do, and I was like, ‘I’m about to do Dancing With the Stars, tell me, how was your experience?’ And she was like, ‘Milo, it’s the worst! Like you get injured, you feel like an idiot,’” the Disney alum told Entertainment Tonight of the 2018 chat. “And I was like, ‘OK…’ So that was kinda my advice from her.”
Maksim Chmerkovskiy had a rough turn when paired with Hope Solo for season 13. The former partners did not get along and they were often shown fighting during their dance rehearsals.
During a 2015 appearance on the “Allegedly With Theo Von & Matthew Cole Weiss” podcast, Chmerkovskiy played a game of “F–k, Marry, Kill” and said he “would definitely” choose to “kill” the former soccer player.
“She’s just a s—ty person,” he explained at the time. “People can be bad or good or whatever. You can have a s—ty life growing up. You can have a tough upbringing. You can have a history. You can have whatever. But, if you are just a bad person, you know what I mean? There’s no excuse for that.”
Hope accused Chmerkovskiy in her 2012 book, Solo: A Memoir of Hope, of slapping her during one of their rehearsals but he denied the accusation.
Cheryl Burke, for her part, shared why her “least favorite partner” to date has been Ian Ziering. “The fact that his name is not EE-AN and its EYE-AN makes me want to throw up,” she said on the “Allegedly” podcast in 2016.
The Dance Moms alum claimed that working with the BH90210 alum “made me want to slit my wrists,” adding: “I was like crying to executives. I was like is there any way to please to just eliminate us?”
Burke later said that she was “out of line” for seemingly making light of suicide in her jab about Ziering. “There’s no excuse. No matter if it was a joke or not, I know it hurt him and I know it hurt his family. It was a big deal,” she said on her podcast “Pretty Messed Up” in April 2021.
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Scroll down to see some of the worst Dancing With the Stars pairings over the years.