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Dancing with the Stars' Kim Zolciak surprises with strong performance

Will Kim's scores keep her in the competition?

Staring the first elimination of DWTS Season 21 in the face, Kim Zolciak surprised everyone with a much-improved performance.

She didn't end up at the top of the Dancing with the Stars leaderboard — that honor went to Bindi Irwin and Derek Hough, who rocked an Argentine tango to AC/DC in honor of her Australian hometown — but Kim Zolciak and her partner, Tony Dovolani, also didn't end the night in the bottom three. Zolciak, who was emotional all week over her initial showing, displayed vast improvement in this week's quickstep. Judges and fans seemed surprised but thrilled for her.

More: DWTS' Kim Zolciak's daughter slammed for looking like Kylie Jenner

Controversy and tears

Vine star Hayes Grier did a foxtrot to a Florida Georgia Line song that landed him in the middle of the leaderboard by night's end, but it was his emotional connection with his mom, who was in the studio audience, that had fans reacting.

Dancing with the Stars competitor Paula Deen also had fans talking again. This time she raised eyebrows by turning up the heat with partner Louis Van Amstel in a sultry black number and high heels. They danced a rumba for Savannah that ended with Van Amstel dipping Deen as she wrapped her leg around him. Some fans weren't feeling it, with the overall consensus being that it was uncomfortable to watch.

More: 10 DWTS contestants more controversial than Paula Deen

Highs and lows

While Bindi Irwin and Derek Hough topped the Dancing with the Stars leaderboard with a score of 25, Tamar Braxton and Val Chmerkovskiy,  Carlos PenaVega and Witney Carson, and Alexa PenaVega and Mark Ballas were right behind her with scores of 24. At the bottom of the leaderboard were Chaka Khan and Keo Motsepe with 15 points for their elegant foxtrot (also better than last week), and Karina Smirnoff and jockey Victor Espinoza, who despite the low score of 17 points, charmed the crowd with their enthusiastic hip-shaking jive.


At the end of the night, it was finally time for the first elimination of the season. Chaka Khan and Keo Motsepe and Gary Busey and Anna Trebunskaya, who danced a charming foxtrot reliving Busey's high school days, were in jeopardy. Ultimately, Chaka Khan and Keo Motsepe were the first couple to go home.

Did you watch all of the performances on Dancing with the Stars tonight? Who got your votes? Were you surprised that Chaka Khan was eliminated and not another competitor?

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