We usually don’t expect much rigorous analysis from “Dancing with the Stars” celebrity guest judges. Sometimes they’re there promoting a project, or they’re invited to way in one a specific theme night. But they usually prefer to be more supportive than critical, so they often give higher scores than the rest of the judging panel. That’s why it was surprising to see this week’s guest Nick Carter give thoughtful critiques to many of the contestants on Monday night. Maybe the show should consider bringing him on full-time.
Carter filled in for regular judge Julianne Hough. A member of the Backstreet Boys music group, he was a good fit for the evening’s theme: “Boy Bands vs. Girl Groups.” And he has additional credentials that made him a welcome guest: he competed in season 21 and finished second to Bindi Irwin. So while he’s not a dance expert, he’s intimately acquainted with “DWTS.”
And he backed that up with many of his comments and scores. He and the rest of the judges admired Simone Biles‘s samba at the beginning of the night, but Carter scored her more strictly than the full-timers: Len Goodman, Bruno Tonioli and Carrie Ann Inaba gave her 9s, but Carter gave her an 8. That even surprised host Tom Bergeron. And he was on-point when critiquing the next performer, Bonner Bolton; Carter advised the tense-looking bull rider to “find a way to let go” and just let the dance happen once he’s learned it.
That was surprisingly astute and specific considering that the standard for guest judge comments ranges from “Good job” to “Great job.” Do you think he should come back as a full-time judge? Should he return as a guest judge? Or should he never return at all? Vote in our poll below.