'Dancing With the Stars' 2013 Makes Cut; Bill Nye, Fan Favorite, Stays

Image: 'Dancing With the Stars' 2013 Makes Cut; Bill Nye, Fan Favorite, Stays Bill Nye the Science Guy.

Tuesday, 24 Sep 2013 12:24 PM

By Alexandra Ward

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On ABC's "Dancing With the Stars" 2013 edition, the axe fell Monday night when the first celebrity contestant was cut as the show premiered its new one-night-only performance/elimination format.

Former NFL player turned ESPN analyst Keyshawn Johnson was the first star voted off the competitive reality dancing show after he and his partner Sharna Burgess posted a score of 18 with their samba.

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"For a guy that's never even bobbed his head in the car, the fact that I could have the experience of dance... is something amazing to me," Johnson said after being eliminated.

Fan favorite Bill Nye the Science Guy improved on last week's performance with his Beethoven-inspired paso doble, while "High School Musical" star Corbin Bleu, "Glee" actress Amber Riley, and former "Saved By the Bell" cast member Elizabeth Berkley sailed to the top of the pack.

"King of Queens" star Leah Remini, who announced over the summer that she was leaving the Church of Scientology after 30 years, struggled a bit with the pressure she says she's facing.

"The church is looking for me to fail, so they say to their parishioners, 'See what happens when you leave the church?'" she said to pro partner Tony Dovolani as they rehearsed last week for Monday's samba.

Remini and Dovolani's samba earned them a score of 24.

TV legend Valerie Harper's story of adversity got her pro partner Tristan McManus a little emotional as the pair practiced their paso doble (which later received a 19 from the judges) ahead of Monday's performance.

Harper, who was diagnosed with a rare form of brain cancer earlier this year, fought through a sore knee during rehearsals while McManus urged her to rest.

"I'm 74 with terminal cancer," she told McManus. "I'm not going to let a little pain in my knee stop me."

"You're an amazing person Valerie Harper, you know that?" he said, fighting back tears.

"DWTS" airs Mondays at 8 p.m. EST on ABC.

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Related stories:

Valerie Harper Included as 'Dancing With the Stars' Cast Revealed

Leah Remini Reported to Be Joining Cast of 'Dancing With the Stars'

Paula Deen to 'Dancing With the Stars': No Thanks  

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