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Moonwalker Buzz Aldrin risks elimination as "Dancing With the Stars" score 'craters'


Apollo 11 astronaut Buzz Aldrin with dancing partner Ashly Costa await their score on "Dancing with the Stars." (ABC)
March 30, 2010 — The second man to walk on the Moon may be the first to be danced off stage as the first results for ABC's "Dancing with the Stars" are revealed Tuesday evening.

Astronaut Buzz Aldrin's future on the reality TV show now rests on how many fan votes he received after two weeks of live dance performances that the show's judges ranked as the lowest among the ten other contestants.

"How can you not be a fan of Buzz Aldrin?" asked judge Len Goodman, a British professional ballroom dancer, on Monday night's show. "How difficult it is to try to criticize a legend, so I am not even going to try."

Unfortunately for Aldrin, the other judges were not equally reserved in their critiques.


For their second dance together, Aldrin and Costa performed the Foxtrot to the song "Fly Me to the Moon." (ABC)
After describing Aldrin's Cha-cha-cha last week as looking like the astronaut was still wearing his moon boots, Italian choreographer Bruno Tonioli ascribed Aldrin's Foxtrot this week to dodging another lunar feature.

"Buzz, I have an astronomical discovery for you: the man in the Moon looks stuck in the Foxtrot. It looked like you were avoiding craters, I know you're used to it," boasted Tonioli. "Sometimes it helps going in a straight line, if you come back, but you know, great to have you."

Decked out in a black tuxedo with a metallic silver bow tie, Aldrin, 80, twirled his partner, 27-year-old Ashly Costa to "Fly Me to the Moon" across a stage that did indeed have moon craters projected from above.

During a taped segment that was played before they took to the floor, Aldrin revealed that he even had Costa draw out his steps similar to how he trained for his missions.

"I've asked Ashly to draw out the steps for the foxtrot on a map and it's very, very useful to me," he said. "I have to put this in what we call... military topography graphics."

It was those carefully-planned steps that tripped up Aldrin with judge Carrie Ann Inaba.

"You, for being such a courageous man, looked like you were so afraid of stepping on Ashly's toes the whole time," she said. "But nice effort and I loved the silver tie."


Aldrin and Costa dancing the Foxtrot on March 29. (ABC)
The three judges gave Aldrin a score of four each out of a possible ten points. That brought his two week total to 26 out of 60, placing him at the bottom of the leaderboard just below football player Chad Ochocinco, soap opera actor Aiden Turner and mother-to-eight Kate Gosselin.

Pussycat Dolls' lead singer Nicole Scherzinger leads the board with 53 points, after scoring the seasons first "tens" on Monday evening.

Remarking on his low scores, Aldrin reflected, "I'll tell you, the only way is up... in my life."

The judges' scores however, do not alone decide who stays and who goes. For Aldrin to dance another night, he needs to have garnered more votes from fans who voiced their support by phone, via text message and through the web.

"We'll hang in there for as long as we can," said Aldrin, "right to the glorious end."

Dancing with the Stars' results show airs live on Tuesday, March 30 at 8pm Eastern/7pm Central on ABC.

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