During Tuesday’s taping of The Talk, Inaba — who cohosts the CBS chatfest when she’s not sitting on the DWTS judges’ dais — admitted it was painful to learn that Van Der Beek’s wife recently suffered a miscarriage, a tragedy the actor revealed during Monday’s episode. But Inaba, together with her fellow judges, had a responsibility to choose the best dancer who should advance to the finals.
So when Van Der Beek and Ally Brooke were named as the bottom two performers, Inaba and fellow judges Len Goodman and Bruno Tonioli felt they had no choice but to favor the pop star.
“As a human being, what he and his wife, Kimberly, suffered is heartbreaking, and I have so much sadness in my heart for them, and my prayers are with them,” Inaba said on The Talk. “But you know, this is where it’s really hard. As a judge, I have to judge the dance. We get to know them, and they become family, and their pain is my pain… I have to judge what’s happening on the dance floor. I went home and I vomited.”
Cohost Marie Osmond noted that some people were questioning whether Van Der Beek should have been home with his wife rather than dancing in the DWTS semifinals. “Can I just say that it just tells you what kind of a guy he is?” she said. “He’s a follow-through person. He’s a finisher. We all go through heartbreaking things in life.… This is a huge competition, and I admire him. I think it shows his work ethic. Sometimes too, you have to remember, those endorphins help you cope. And so I think we shouldn’t judge him at all.”
Before performing his second dance Monday, Van Der Beek spoke directly to the camera about the miscarriage. Earlier in the season, the actor revealed that he and his wife were expecting their sixth child.
“We lost the baby,” he said Monday. “The little soul that we had expected to welcome in to the family took a shortcut to whatever lies beyond. You never know why these things happen, that’s what I’ve been telling my kids. All you know it brings you closer together. It breaks you open, it opens up your heart… it makes you more human. I really didn’t think I’d be dancing tonight, but Kimberly from our hospital bed said to me, ‘I’m not done watching you dance.’ Kimberly, I love you. We are dancing to ‘Take Me to Church,’ which is all about human convention that’s so strong, it’s out of control, it’s scary, it rocks your soul.”
The Talk airs weekly on CBS. The finals of DWTS, featuring celebrities Brooke, Kel Mitchell, Hannah Brown, and Lauren Alaina, will air Monday on ABC.