"We've never had a cast like this!" announces Tom Bergeron, and boy is he not kidding. He talks about how it's "double stress" because this week is the inexplicable double elimination, and they proceed to torture us by putting together a video montage of all the drops and falls that happened in this past week's practice sessions. During another, less injury laden season, maybe it wouldn't have been so wince inducing.In the audience: Kim Kardashian (oy) and Cody Linley (yay!). On Samantha Harris: gigantic 80's hair and ugly 70's tiger-stripe wallpaper dress. Walking down the stairs, Karina slips a bit, making her the third to do so this season, I believe (Shawn & Steve-O being the others?) So yeah, show, great job with that new stage.( Will the following eleven couples please take the floor...Collapse )
Hey, they've changed the opening credits! Now, instead of the cheesy 80's multiple-image-trail effect, they actually have a dozen multiple images of the couples behind them in lame shapes and patterns. Whatever.This is the first week that all of the competitors will be able to take the floor, saying something about this season. And not only are they danger-prone, they're also all so orange. Eww. And, it seems Samantha Harris now rates a sparkly microphone.( Will the following twelve couples please take the floor...Collapse )
Another week, and the supposed celebrities and their ever-more-popular professional partners descend the staircase. Seriously, the average fame level of the pros is really starting to outstrip the "stars", and there's plenty of votes coming in for them and not really for the stars. Yup, I'm looking right at Julianne. Mm-hmm.I'm impressed by how well Lil' Kim cleans up, and less than impressed by the fact that Steve-O is absent and they've made Lacey put on her schoolgirl-gone-chorus-girl-gone-wild costume on anyway. There's also some unfortunate color matching going on: Tony's skin is about the same tone as his costume and Denise Richards' hair is about the same color as her skin. Neither are good looks.In the audience: Sabrina! Along with the Man Himself, Nathan Fillion and Stana Katic from a show you really ought to be watching, Castle.( Will the following thirteen couples please take the floor again...Collapse )
Once more, I reiterate my wish that DWTS would stop calling these "seasons", coming twice a year as they do and go with something else, like ANTM does calling them "cycles".Anyhoo, welcome to another three months' worth of good dancing, bad dancing, tiny costumes and obvious video packages from the show and ridiculously wordy reviewing and Samantha Harris-bashing by yours truly. If you're new to these reviews, I'll give a few pertinent facts just to get everybody up to speed. About me: I began learning ballroom dance in college, where I did some competing on that circuit, and a few years after graduating, I found myself teaching professionally, getting certified and taking part in one pro competition. I have a tendency to be verbose, sarcastic and nitpicky in these reviews and, let's face it, real life. Show notes: I love Tom Bergeron. I think Samantha Harris is a horrible co-host. I think Edyta is a good dancer, but a lousy teacher. I use half-points in scoring. And I think whoever assigns the music on the show needs to be horsewhipped.Still here? Good on you. Let's get started.If you've been following DWTS at all pre-season, you know that already the show has been beset with drama and injuries. Even though the rumors have flown all week, the show is only formally announcing replacements for injured dancers Jewel (shin fractures) and Nancy O'Dell (torn meniscus) on tonight's show. Personally, I have to wonder if the pros, now feeling the pressure to be good out of the gate the way the last two champs have been, are pushing too hard.Oh, yes, I forgot. All the show's injuries and problems I blame on the curse of Heather Mills.( Will the following thirteen couples please take the floor...Collapse )
What's that? Is that the sound of a clock, ticking down to yet another season of Dancing With the Stars? You're frakking right it is!So have you missed my epically wordy and over-involved recaps/reviews of DWTS? Too bad if you haven't, because they're coming back. As usual, though, this time around starts with the announcement of the new cast, and my thoughts on who I think just might win the thing.Here's how I think they stack up. Bear in mind, only one pro partner has been announced, and I really do believe who a celeb dances with affects their ultimate performance.( The following thirteen couples have been called to the floor...Collapse )So there you go. Honestly, a seriously underwhelming lineup this time around. I can only hope that someone will really surprise me with personality or, better yet, talent.Like I said, they're touting having "three real-life couples" in the competition this season: Julianne and Chuck, Ty and Jewel and the recently-engaged Maks and Karina. Whoopee.They're also continuing to tweak the format, but I actually like the ideas. 1) Rather than the mess of shoe-horning in those few random dances last season, they're officially adding Argentine Tango and East Coast Swing to the roster of dances, ones that are, you know, things these professionals dance. 2) During the "first weeks" of competition, the bottom two couples will have a dance off to determine the elimination.The show returns Monday, 9 March 2009. See you then!ETA 12 Feb 2009: Revised with the pro partnerings that were just announced.
And it comes down to this, true believers. Feels like we've been at it for nine or ten months already, doesn't it?Tom's voiceover relates how the contestants have weathered "triumph and tragedy" and how this is "the most closely contested final ever" for DWTS, which they don't actually back up with any information, but it's enough of a crapshoot as to just who'll walk away with the trophy to let it slide. There's going to be something called a "Samba Smackdown" tonight. They give us an extra-dramatic shot of the three finalists in costume, standing around a spotlighted trophy, like they're communing with the mothership or something.( Will the following three couples please take the floor...Collapse )
It's Semifinals week, and we're down to the final four. I have to say that I don't necessarily hate anybody who made it this far. Brooke is fantastic, Lance and Cody have shown good improvement and Warren is entertaining, if the weakest dancer of the group. Those first three would be my picks for the finale, but we'll see how that works out. As we join the show, Samantha is looking particularly scrawny tonight.When the couples take the floor, it seems they and the costumers have decided that half of them should be covered up and the other half nearly naked.Tom Bergeron FTW: "Head judge, Len Goodman: Lord of the Early-Bird Special"Our format tonight has the couples doing one of the usual complement of dances that they have yet to perform as their first round dance and one of the four oddball dances (Jitterbug, Hustle, Salsa & West Coast Swing) introduced a few weeks ago.( Will the following four couples please take the floor...Collapse )
Apparently, Eli Stone is cancelled after ep. 13, and I got conned into doing Life now too. So, handy links!The Unit"Into Hell, Part One""Into Hell, Part Two"Eli Stone"Should I Stay Or Should I Go?""The Humanitarian"Life"Jackpot""Black Friday""Badge Bunny"Stay tuned for a recap of 24: Redemption</a> sometime next week!
Tonight, we finally have the couples each doing two full routines. Of course, we have to put up with yet another annoying and utterly pointless "new twist", this one involving requiring the celebrities to perform 15 second solos during their Latin routines. Because, you know, that's the cornerstone of ballroom dancing: solos. Tom refers to it as "a true test of dancing ability", as though that actually matters to people, particularly the voters.We do get an update on Julianne's condition: she's still recovering from her endometriosis-related surgery, which has had her returning to the hospital a couple of times. Lacey is also being treated for endometriosis, but for a much lesser case. It turns out that Kym has also injured her shoulder, meaning that not a single remaining couple has escaped injury to at least one of the pair.( Will the following five couples please take the floor...Collapse )
The Season of Unnecessary Innovation continues. Tonight, we get the much-threatened "Team Dance", more details of which are, as usual, being saved for right before it actually happens. Tom refers to this as the "toughest season ever", and I kind of have to agree, but probably not for the reasons the producers would want me to. In the mini-recap, we get an awful video effect of Cloris flying away, but it's worth it knowing the only thing making the show go over-time now is the show.Samantha Harris finally gets both great up-hair and a great kind of Greek-y dress.( Will the following six couples please take the floor...Collapse )