Former Drag Race competitor Courtney Act and her male dancing partner Joshua Keefe recently lost Australia’s Dancing with the Stars even though they consistently outscored the winning duo by a margin of 59 total points over the course of the 10-episode season.
Act and Keefe actually received the highest scores above all 11 of the other duos in nine out of 10 weeks. But alas, the show’s final winner is decided by combining the judge’s final episode scores along with telephone and text message voting from the Australian public.
Apparently Australia wasn’t ready to see a same-sex couple win.
After getting second place, Act wrote, “Ladies, Gentlemen, and people of all Genders! We didn’t win the Mirror Ball, but I feel like we won by being able to share so many dances and stories over the last 10 weeks, and sharing it with @JoshuaKeefe has been a true honour!”
Here’s video of Act’s final performance on Dancing with the Stars, performed to pansexual rocker Janelle Monae‘s song “Make Me Feel”:
Ladies, Gentlemen, and people of all Genders! We didn’t win the Mirror Ball, but I feel like we won by being able to share so many dances and stories over the last 10 weeks, and sharing it with @JoshuaKeefe has been a true honour! pic.twitter.com/4A55KiXHCx
— Courtney Act (@courtneyact) April 22, 2019
Twitter users were upset by her unexpected loss as well:
I’d like to report a robbery.
Courtney Act. Had a mirrorball trophy stolen.
— Wade Shipard (@wadeshipard) April 22, 2019
You’re a winner Ms @courtneyact, an absolute winner. Thank you so much for lending us your heels to stand on and your star power to shine a light on the work we are doing and want to do. We will be forever grateful. You are the epitome of what it means to be an ally. You Matter x pic.twitter.com/VvtkgenKsd
— Contagion of Love (@blkrnbow) April 22, 2019
— sammy ? (@untamedlisten3r) April 22, 2019
Act’s loss brings to mind Kris Allen’s 2009 victory over Adam Lambert in season 8 of American Idol. Lambert, who was an out gay man during the competition, was obviously more talented, but America’s call-in voters couldn’t stand to see him win, so he lost to a man whose fame has paled in comparison to Lambert’s ever since.
After winning, Allen said, “Adam deserved this… [he] was the most consistent person all year. He was seriously one of the most gifted performers that I’ve ever met.”
Similarly, actor Samuel Johnson, the Dancing with the Stars competitor who beat Act, said, “Courtney was the better dancer. I want to acknowledge Courtney,” after he won.
He told TV Week, “I’d be an idiot to pretend she wasn’t the far superior dancer week in, week out. She absolutely deserves this trophy more than anyone else. In my mind, she got everything right. I just wanted to be a good wingman for Courtney. I’m as surprised as anybody.”