Confession: last night, I tuned into Dancing with the Stars. All I can say is Oh, my God.
Ballroom dancing has always seemed a little freaky to me. It’s something about the really tight pants, and the big hair, and the very stern and scary smiles. So even by itself it’s a bit of a spectacle. Factor in B-and-C-list celebrities, and the bizarro quotient skyrockets. I didn’t get to watch the whole thing—it was vetoed for Gilmore Girls on DVD—but I managed to see Rachel Hunter, Joey McIntyre, Trista Sutter and the guy who played J. Peterman on Seinfeld perform with their partners. Yikes! There was something absolutely spastic about the quick step, or whatever it was Joey was doing. I got tired just watching. I really wish I’d gotten to see Evander Holyfield, though: him on a show like this doesn’t even seem REAL. Instead, it’s like something you’d see in a Robert Smigel “TV Funhouse” cartoon on SNL.
The sad thing, to me anyway, is that it’s so clearly about the celebrities. When the judging time comes, it’s like their partners, the real ballroom dancers, are only allowed to speak if spoken to. They just get to stand there and smile and be REALLY GOOD at what they do, while everyone looks at Rachel Hunter, or whoever. I hope that if this show does well—combine the fact that there’s nothing else on right now and it’s just weird enough, and it might be a hit—that the real dancers get their fifteen minutes. I mean, if you can get famous for dating (and marrying) on TV, shouldn’t you at least get some acclaim for being a really good dancer (and wearing the tightest pants I’ve ever seen?) Of course you should. This is America!
(Speaking of tight pants, Reno 911! returns next week as well. Thank goodness. We’re dying out here!)