Monday, January 16, 2006
Dancing with the Stars 2006
The first edition of Dancing with the Stars was a guilty pleasure of sorts…engaging enough as these “reality” show things go…but after the suspect awarding of the championship at the end of the series I wasn’t sure if I would bother with the new edition.
But I decided to give it a chance and, thus far, it’s a harmlessly entertaining way to spend an hour or so on Thursday nights. The same hypercritical (they don’t seem to understand that they are watching novices who have had a week to learn a routine and not seasoned professional dancers who will hit every move with perfection), pompous judges are back …but this year their votes are only half on the competitors’ scores (the public gets to vote to make the other half of the score.) The unctuous Tom Bergeron is back as co-host (with a different giggly co-host whose name escapes me.)
But then there are the dancers. The celebrities are mostly from the C-list again (though future Pro Football Hall of Fame member Jerry Rice and Academy Award winner Tatum O’Neal…yeah she won it when she was 12 but she won it just the same…lift the caliber of the group a bit) but they are, for the most part, quite game.
The most pleasant surprise is the incredibly graceful Stacy Keibler (above with her professional dance partner Dovolani.) Keibler is a professional wrestler (the 2004 “WWE Babe of the Year” who is, quite aptly, nicknamed “the Legs of the WWE”) and she is a wonder to behold.
Rice, Drew Lachey (late of the “boy band” 98 Degrees and brother of Jessica Simpson’s soon-to-be ex-husband, Nick…who has attended the shows to cheer his bro on), and TV reporter Giselle Fernandez are also among those who have worked hard not to embarrass themselves during the dancing.
And then there’s Master P (below with his professional dance partner Ashly DelGrosso.)
Rapper/Athlete (he played semi-pro Basketball last year)/Businessman P (for Percy) Miller gets props for stepping into the breach when his son, rapper/actor Romeo, got hurt and had to drop out. That gets him points as a good Dad but as a ballroom dancer…? Well, he’s a good Dad…
(I guess there must be some kind of campaign among the phone voters to keep P in the competition because his lead-footed performances and headstrong behavior certainly haven’t merited him making the cut during the first two weeks of the show.)
Dancing with the Stars was such a hit for ABC last summer that it has spawned its own Fox-TV rip off, Skating with Celebrities, which debuts this week. I guess these things are good for keeping C (and D list “stars” out of rehab and away from other unsavory ways of trying to get back into the spotlight if for nothing else.