Dancing with the Stars Season 32, Episode 1 Recap: Welcome Back to the Ballroom!

Dancing with the Stars recap
(ABC/Eric McCandless)

Dancing with the Stars is back, baby! And for the first time ever, the show is airing live on both ABC and Disney+ in local time zones.

This season, Alfonso Ribeiro and Julianne Hough are handling hosting duties. Carrie Ann Inaba, Bruno Tonioli, and Derek Hough are manning the judges’ paddles. As a tribute to head judge Len Goodman, the trophy was renamed the Len Goodman Mirrorball trophy. I already miss Len’s legendary critiques.

During the live East Coast broadcast, fans can vote at ABC.com and also vote via text. As always, votes will be combined with the judges’ scores to determine who is sent packing.

The opening number, set to Dua Lipa’s Levitating, was out of this world. Alfonso and Julianne collected some dancers from across the galaxy to return to the ballroom. Shout out to choreographer Luam.

One couple will be sent home tonight, so let’s see some magic in the ballroom. I’ve got my bedazzled judge’s paddle ready. Let’s go!

Xochitl Gomez and Val Chmerkovskiy

Dancing with the Stars recap
(ABC/Andrew Eccles)

Cha-Cha to Peanut Butter Jelly by Galantis.

Xochitl Gomez, who is 17 years old, was thrilled to land Val Chmerkovskiy as her partner. Their routine was fun. Xochitl had a lot of energy and charisma. Bruno called her “vivacious and bright.”

She scored 18 out of 30.

Barry Williams and Peta Murgatroyd

Dancing with the Stars recap
(ABC/Andrew Eccles)

Foxtrot to It’s a Sunshine Day by The Brady Bunch.

Actor Barry Williams had DWTS on his bucket list. And he was happy to have Peta Murgatroyd as his partner. Their foxtrot was charming. Derek praised how “effortless” it was. I love a dose of dancing nostalgia.

Greg Brady brought home 16 out of 30.

Tyson Beckford and Jenna Johnson

Dancing with the Stars recap
(ABC/Andrew Eccles)

Cha-Cha to Never Too Much by Luther Vandross.

Model Tyson Beckford was partnered with Jenna Johnson. He danced previously at Chippendales, so I was surprised that Tyson seemed nervous. And he posed like he was modeling. Carrie Ann praised his potential, but both Derek and Bruno pointed out the heel leads.

And Jenna, who isn’t shy, hopped onto Alfonso before she and Tyson hit the skybox. Get those votes, girl!

Tyson earned 12 out of 30.

Alyson Hannigan and Sasha Farber

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(ABC/Andrew Eccles)

Salsa to Never Gonna Not Dance Again by Pink.

That’s right, Buffy the Vampire Slayer’s very own Willow is in the ballroom. Actress Alyson Hannigan and her partner, Sasha Farber, are already besties. Poor Alyson had a traumatic childhood dancing experience. So, she is ready to slay the ballroom and conquer her fear.

While Alyson was having a blast, the actual dancing was rough in spots. Derek loved the “joy and freedom.” She needs to work on her timing.

Alyson received 13 out of 30.

Harry Jowsey and Rylee Arnold

Dancing with the Stars recap
(ABC/Andrew Eccles)

Cha-Cha to Rock Your Body by Justin Timberlake.

Harry Jowsey of Too Hot to Handle was paired with newbie pro Rylee Arnold. And yes – Rylee is Lindsay Arnold’s younger sister. He hopes to learn to dance to change his image.

Rylee choreographed a cute routine, but Harry needs some work. Bruno compared him to a lost tourist in Times Square. But ripping his shirt open made him happy and relaxed.

Harry scored 12 out of 30.

Jason Mraz and Daniella Karagach

Dancing with the Stars recap
(ABC/Andrew Eccles)

Cha-Cha to I Feel Like Dancing by Jason Mraz.

Grammy-award winner Jason Mraz was paired with Daniella Karagach. She is a huge fan. He shared that he was studying musical theater in college. However, he stopped because he lacked confidence in his dancing.

This routine was one of my favorites! It was groovy and joyful. Bruno told Jason that he “is a dancer.” Carrie Ann declared it the best dance of the night so far. And he even earned a slow clap from Derek.

Jason earned 21 out of 30.

Jamie Lynn Spears and Alan Bersten

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(ABC/Andrew Eccles)

Tango to Don’t Call Me Up [Zac Samuel Remix] by Mabel.

Actress Jamie Lynn Spears was paired with Alan Bersten. He was star-struck. Jamie Lynn is Britney Spears’ younger sister. She wanted to try something she was afraid of to inspire her children.

The duo turned in a passable tango. Derek praised her “natural ability.” Britney probably clocked more views in her social media dance videos than her sister received in votes.

Jamie Lynn earned 15 out of 30.

Adrian Peterson and Britt Stewart

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(ABC/Andrew Eccles)

Salsa to Yeah! by Usher featuring Lil Jon and Ludacris.

NFL player Adrian Peterson, who attracted some controversy due to his prior arrest history, was paired with Britt Stewart. There were lots of lifts in the routine. Derek liked the dance and called out his signature scowl. Carrie Ann praised his “commitment.”

Adrian received 18 out of 30.

Lele Pons and Brandon Armstrong

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(ABC/Andrew Eccles)

Tango to El Tango de Roxanne from Moulin Rouge.

Social media star and Latin music singer Lele Pons tackled a tango with her pro partner, Brandon Armstrong. Lele is energetic and comes in with some limited dance experience.

They delivered a smoldering tango that surely impressed Lele’s grandma. Carrie Ann called the dance “mesmerizing.” The judges advised Lele to point her toes. Lele broke a fingernail, proving that there is pain in ballroom dance.

Lele earned 19 out of 30.

Mira Sorvino and Gleb Savchenko

Dancing with the Stars recap
(ABC/Andrew Eccles)

Cha-cha to Kiss by Prince and The Revolution.

Oscar winner Mira Sorvino always loved to dance. Gleb Savchenko joined her for a graceful cha-cha. Derek called out Mira for thinking too much. Bruno called her “a great dancer.”

Mira scored 17 out of 30.

Mauricio Umansky and Emma Slater

Dancing with the Stars recap
 (ABC/Andrew Eccles)

Jive to I Ain’t Worried by OneRepublic.

Buying Beverly Hills and Real Housewives of Beverly Hills star Mauricio Umansky was paired with Emma Slater. He mentioned that he has been having a tough year with Kyle Richards, his wife. They are currently separated. She was in the audience, but she looked miserable.

Poor Mauricio didn’t know that the jive was a dance. Derek compared Mauricio to his father dancing at his wedding. He claimed that was a compliment. Bruno called the routine “enthusiastic.” I’m not exactly sure what I just witnessed.

He scored 15 out of 30.

Charity Lawson and Artem Chigvintsev

Dancing with the Stars recap
(ABC/Andrew Eccles)

Tango to Only Girl (In the World) by Rihanna.

The Bachelorette star Charity Lawson and Artem Chigvintsev teamed up to tango. She has cheerleading experience, but no dance experience.

They delivered a steamy tango. Bruno called it “stellar.” Carrie Ann was nearly rendered speechless. I loved it.

Charity earned 22 out of 30. The highest score of the night so far!

Matt Walsh and Koko Iwasaki

Dancing with the Stars recap
(ABC/Andrew Eccles)

Cha-Cha to Poison by Bell Biv DeVoe.

Veep star Matt Walsh kept Koko Iwasaki in stitches. He missed some practice time because of the Writer’s Guild of America strike. His cha-cha was infused with funk and humor. Derek loved Matt’s “faceography.” Bruno called the performance “surreal.”

Matt brought home 12 out of 30. Cue the audience booing.

Ariana Madix and Pasha Pashkov

Dancing with the Stars recap
(ABC/Andrew Eccles)

Tango to Love Myself [Riddler Remix] by Hailee Steinfeld.

Vanderpump Rules star Ariana Madix and Pasha Pashkov danced a tango filled with passion and drama. Ariana was loving the camera a bit too much.

I applaud her nod to her Pump Rules reunion revenge dress. Derek called the performance “fantastic” and “killer.” She rocked it!

Ariana scored 21 out of 30.

The leaderboard

Charity and Artem are perched at the top. Three couples, Matt and Koko, Harry and Rylee, and Tyson and Jenna are all tied at the bottom. But who will be facing the judge’s vote?

The bottom two couples

  • Mauricio and Emma
  • Matt and Koko

Going home tonight

Matt and Koko are hitting the road after just one spin around the ballroom. It looks like Kyle will be back in the audience next week to support Mauricio!

Dancing with the Stars continues Tuesdays on ABC and Disney+.