Mario Lopez of Extra interviewed Anna and Jack! Jack starts out saying what a great partner he has and how the time was right to finally do Dancing With The Stars. One of his greatest passions has always been dancing. Anna says their practices are going really well. The Fox Trot is their first dance. Jack comments how it’s testing his body and his frame. He says learning to dance has been challenging and he’s had some good days. He’s taken some steps forward and then has taken some steps backwards, but, it’s the greatest feeling when it all “clicks”. Anna recalls their first meeting and how Jack gave her white roses (awww, my favorite flower). Lots more below. Fun fun interview and one of the best yet!
Now that you’ve read / seen where everything ranks at the conclusion of Season 13, how does all that math apply to the Season 14 celebrities?
Professional Partner: Valentin Chmerkovskiy
Overall Rank: 12 ( 9 – 10 – 11 )
Comments: She’s been heavily promoting herself to get onto the show for the past few seasons (a la Florence Henderson). So this really came as no surprise when she was announced as part of the cast. Having a relatively “new” pro for a partner doesn’t help her much. Those that are known for hosting duties in recent memory have been all over the spectrum depending on the combination. But ABC loves the cross promotion, so with her being part of The View allows ABC to bring in Barbara Walters, Whoopi Goldberg, etc into the audience for Dancing with the Stars as a way to bring A-listers into the fold (a la David Arquette and Courtney Cox Arquette or Kirstie Alley with John Travolta). Granted the cross promotion only works for as long as she’s on the show… so we’ll see how long this lasts.
Conclusion: I don’t necessarily agree with the numbers but this also depends on how everyone else has done.
Professional Partner: Peta Murgatroyd
Overall Rank: 11 ( 3 – 1 – 12 )
Comments: NFL players typically do rather well on the show, how I have no idea, maybe because the guys are so bored when the NFL season is over that they turn onto Dancing with the Stars to see which NFL player will be on the show (they’ve been on nine of the thirteen seasons thus far). In the seasons that an NFL star was part of the cast they have placed either at the midway point or higher, how I cannot say… I swear I think the male demographic is much higher than people may at first believe it to be. Two of the winners were NFL stars (Emmitt Smith and Hines Ward). So I’ll be interested to see how far Donald goes in this particular season. Again having a relatively “new” pro doesn’t seem to help his numbers any.
Conclusion: This is another rank that I don’t necessarily agree with the numbers… I guess we’ll wait and see.
Occupation: Athlete (Tennis)
Professional Partner: Tony Dovolani
Overall Rank: 10 ( 11 – 9 – 9 )
Comments: Athletes – outside of the Olympians – don’t typically fare well and as a tennis player, she is placed firmly in the “athletes” category. The last time there was a tennis player in the cast it was Monica Seles in Season 6 with Jonathan Roberts and she didn’t last, leaving the season within the first couple of weeks. I’m not saying that Martina would follow the same path, because other athletes (Helio – racecar driver, Ty Murray – rodeo, Louie Vito – snowboarding, Hope Solo – Soccer) fared well… Now add Tony into the equation, who hasn’t had the best track record either (especilaly in recent seasons) and it still doesn’t look good. Her age group hasn’t fared well on the show (excepting Jennifer Grey and Donny Osmond)…
Conclusion: I’ll agree with her being ranked relatively low… just how low I don’t know.
Occupation: Soap Opera Actor
Professional Partner: Anna Trebunskaya
Overall Rank: 9 ( 11 – 3 – 10 )
Comments: I totally fangirled when I realized that he’s going to be on the show. Not because he was/is on a soap opera (The Bold and the Beautiful – one of my favorites) but because he played the title role of Dr Jekyll / Mr Hyde in Frank Wildhorn‘s musical production of Jekyll and Hyde (he did a FAR BETTER than David Hasselhoff), in fact I have a CD of him singing somewhere. In any case, yes, I totally fangirled and as thus I can’t really keep a very objective opinion about him but I’ll try. Soap Opera stars for some odd reason tend to fare well on Dancing with the Stars, frequently going past the midway point of the season (Aiden Turner being the exception). So for me I would rather put him in as an entertainer, but since most people would know him as a soap opera star… he’s stuck, which isn’t bad because soap opera stars tend to do reasonably well on this show for some reason (must be the eye candy).
Conclusion: So me being me and selfish I’m wanting to see him to go past the midway point of the show so I could
drool enjoy his dancing
Professional Partner: Maksim Chmerkovskiy
Overall Rank: 8 ( 9 – 12 – 4 )
Comments: Other than Laura Ingalls from the Little House on the Prairie series is there any other iconic roles that Melissa is known for? I know she’s been a fixture in made for tv movies for most of her life, but that doesn’t help someone that doesn’t really watch tv in general (aka moi). Nevertheless actresses in general don’t usually fare well on the show with less than one-third of all actresses going beyond the midway point of the competition… and they tended to be extremely iconic actresses in their adult lives (Jennifer Grey, Kirstie Alley, Jennie Garth, Jane Seymour, Pamela Anderson to name a few). Having Maksim as a partner can be a good thing since overall he has a stronger track record than most pros (outside of Denise Richards and Debi Mazar).
Conclusion: Honestly for me, she’s up the in air… I’m very much on the fence with her.
Occupation: Singer (Opera)
Professional Partner: Mark Ballas
Overall Rank: 7 ( 3 – 4 – 7 )
Comments: Now if Katherine Jenkins was Vittorio Grigolo I would have jumped on the next plane to Los Angeles and stayed there for the duration of the show just to watch him. Fortunately for Vittorio and my wallet, he’s not going to be doing something like Dancing with the Stars anytime soon, which come to think of it I don’t know why Katherine would participate in the U.S. Dancing with the Stars as opposed to the U.K.’s Strictly Come Dancing… unless she’s trying to break into the U.S. music scene in some way. I mean Dancing with the Stars has been known to be the launch pad of rekindling dying careers, creating new ones, or salvaging careers, so it’s not exactly far off the mark to say that out of everyone in the cast this is probably more of a publicity stunt than anything else, maybe.
Conclusion: Overall she has a semi-decent ranking mix, she’s a bit of an unknown in general. So I’m going to withhold judgment and just say I hope to see her last for a while.
Professional Partner: Kym Johnson
Overall Rank: 6 ( 3 – 7 – 6 )
Comments: Ok, I’m a nerd, so I fangirled. In case you were living under a major rock in the 90s you should know of the iconic character Steve Urkel from Family Matters… or his alter ego: Stefan Urquelle *drools*. Anyway, actors in general tend to do better than actresses, I have no idea why… that’s what the numbers tell me. Maybe it’s the eye candy, maybe they are more endearing to the watching demographic, maybe it’s a bit of all three. In any case, he’s most likely going to come in with a stronger fanbase than most. I’m really looking forward to this pairing, Kym could totally use his huge arsenal of acting chops to get the character of the dances (a la Donny Osmond), it’s just the matter of can he dance?
Conclusion: I’m hoping/thinking that he’ll be lasting past the midway point.
Professional Partner: Karina Smirnoff
Overall Rank: 5 ( 3 – 4 – 5 )
This is a classic example of someone trying to rekindle or salvage their dying career. I don’t remember any songs sung by him, but I’ve never been one for the U.S. mainstream music to begin with. With a few exceptions here and there, anyone that made their name via a singing career tend to stay in the middle of the pack going towards the midway point of the season or maybe just passing it by the week. Where would Gavin land in this normalization? I’m thinking he’ll just miss the midway point… but with Karina kicking his butt, we might be in for a surprise… especially since Karina did Aaron Carter well. Keep in mind that Karina’s stock shot up with her win last season. But she tends to have a stronger track record than most pros (not counting Steve Wozniak). Every singer that Karina has worked with has placed 5th in their season (Billy Ray, Mario, Aaron Carter) so I’m actually laughing that the numbers came out the same way.
Comments Addendum: Ok… so I fanned a few flames when I mentioned that I was under the belief that Gavin was trying to salvage his career. I personally have not heard of him in several years and felt that he had fallen off the face of the planet. So I am going to retrack my original statement about his career… and just say that this show could possibly be something of a promotion for him… since his latest album came out last year and he is currently on tour… or he’s just doing it for the sake of doing it.
Conclusion: Gavin has a lot going for him numbers-wise, as long as his personality meshes with Karina’s he should be ok, don’t know how long he’d last though.
Occupation: Singer (Legend)
Professional Partner: Tristin MacManus
Overall Rank: 4 ( 2 – 4 – 3 )
Comments: On the other side of the singer spectrum we have a legend in our midst, a last minute addition if rumors are to be believed. Oddly enough celebrities in their 60s actually fare better than most other age groups (outside of the obvious Teens and those in their 20s) just barely inching past those in their 30s. Being a legend, Gladys has a lot going for her, a built in fanbase, musicality and of all the “new” professional dancers she landed the most successful of the three.
Conclusion: So I could see her heading towards the midway point on the show, but past it? The jury’s out.
Professional Partner: Chelsie Hightower
Overall Rank: 3 ( 1 – 2 – 8 )
Comments: ENOUGH WITH THE DISNEY STARS ALREADY! I know ABC and Disney are tied at the hip, but really? Another classic example of ABC cross promoting we have the representative from the Disney channel. Not only that, by being in his 20s he has youth and energy by his side to go far in the season. My speculation is that ABC is wanting the youth ratings so they are bringing in someone from the Disney channel to boost said ratings (especially since they will be competing against The Voice that overlaps in the 8:00pm – 9:00pm timeslot). I wouldn’t be surprised if TPTB are hoping for another “Kyle Massey” in Roshon… just sayin’.
Conclusion: All that being said, I wouldn’t be surprised if Roshon continues the Disney Channel strong streak, he might have that Disney spirit that his predecessors had to get far on the show.
Professional Partner: Cheryl Burke
Overall Rank: 2 ( 3 – 7 – 2 )
Comments: Not only is ABC trying to stretch their age demographic, they bring in one of the hottest guys from Telemundo. I know absolutely nothing about him so I had to ask my Mexican friend who was bound to know more about William than I did… his take on him: “He is so very hunky and has a spectacular sense of humor. Once he went onto a talk show and just started undressing stating ‘this is what you all came to see anyway, right?’…” Well I guess we just discovered our new eye candy for the season, or (hell) he might be the next “Gilles Marini” for all I care at this point.
Conclusion: The jury’s out, but if he could dance, meld with his partner and keep that (theoretical) sense of humor up… I could see this placement happening.
Professional Partner: Derek Hough
Overall Rank: 1 ( 3 – 10 – 1 )
Comments: My evil mind wanted to call this couple the “Barbie and Ken” of Season 14 only in reverse since Maria is a brunette and Derek’s a blonde(-ish), but they do make a pretty couple. Maria has a sense of humor, is a television host, people know her… so yeeeeeaaaah. Not much to say here on my end, except… She has Derek for a partner who brings out the best from his partners and with the strongest track record of all the pros. Her age group also fares well on the show… Her personality does shine rather well on the red carpet, however, and that should translate well on the dance floor.
Conclusion: By the sheer power of Derek she’ll get far, her combo can be considered strong. Win though? I’m not sure.
Gavin DeGraw was interviewed by Mix941FM in Las Vegas yesterday. He says he is working on his “moves” and Karina is “breaking him in”. She’s “trying to make the hips not lie.” The interviewers talk of how “hot” Karina is. Gavin agrees. He calls her his “Little Russian Butterfly”. He doesn’t say what their first dance will be, but, promises it will be “difficult.” You can listen to the full interview at Mix941FM. He talks of the other cast members, a recent altercation in New York, and his music tour as well.
Picture above is of Gavin and Julianne Hough taken at the Escape To Total Rewards At Woldenberg Park, New Orleans last week courtesy of Zimbio Pictures.
Stay tuned to this spot. More with Gavin and Karina later on The View.
ADDING: And below is the full segment with Karina and Gavin on The View thanks to Codebear. Karina says Gavin started out a little slow when they first started dancing, but, now things are picking up. Karina runs through the competition a little. Then Karina talks about dance fitness and gives Sherri Shepherd some tips. Gavin performs and then talks on why he’s doing Dancing With The Stars. He says Sherri is his biggest competition and dancing will be an uphill battle. See why below. He’s humble and has a great sense of humor.
Zap2it interviewed Maria Menounos on her new internet project “AfterBuzz TV” where people can talk about their favorite TV shows after they air at night. Soon they will be headlining “Dancing With The Stars” when it begins on March 19th. Maria also dished on being one of the new dancing contestants on Season 14. Below is what she had to say about it….
She says she can’t even begin to speculate about her chances on “Dancing With the Stars,” saying, “Iʼm pretty good under pressure and I wrestled in the WWE in front of 20,000 people, so I think the different experiences of my life can help me know how Iʼll be in different circumstances, and so I didnʼt breathe during that and I was terrified. So I assume the same thing will be the case for ‘Dancing With the Stars,’ but you never know. I keep envisioning freezing up when I see everybody. You know dancing is a very intimate thing, weʼre doing really sexy stuff, and to do it to Derek and a camera person in the room is one thing, but to do it in front of a huge audience, a live audience and millions of people at home, I might freeze, I donʼt know. You never know. Insecurity and fatigue, thereʼs a lot that happens, itʼs like a physical, a mental, and itʼs a big game. Thereʼs a lot involved.”
We asked her who her biggest competition is on the show. She says, “To me itʼs anybodyʼs game. You never know whoʼs gonna be able to hang or not hang, whoʼs gonna capture the audience, whoʼs gonna be a great dancer. For the most part, Iʼm not a dancer, and Martina (Navratilova) wasnʼt a dancer. There are a few of them on there, like William Levy and Rashad Fagen from the Disney channel, he has experience, so some of them have dance experience. William Levy, like Latin lover, heʼs gonna kill it. And youʼve got Jaleel (White) who came out really swinging. I think everyone is gonna be really good. I just want to be good and proud of myself, being somebody whoʼs never taken a dance class in my life, and somebody who has been terrified of this. I just want to impress myself. I really do. I just want to have fun. Itʼs such a great excuse to have fun and to learn something Iʼve never learned before, and impress myself.”
You can read the full article at Zap2it. Also, be sure to check out Pure Derek Hough. Heidi has posted a hilarious interview with Maria and Adam Carolla. According to Heidi, there is lots of discussion with Derek. She’s also got a video of Derek designing Maria a costume. Very cool.
Picture above taken yesterday of Maria going to the Grove courtesy of Zimbio Pictures.