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Who Was The Better Dancer On DWTS: Nicole Scherzinger Or Meryl Davis?

One of my twitter followers private messaged me about this topic taking place at the Dancing With The Stars discussion area and it also showed up in one of my searches. I thought this might make a fun topic for us too. Question: Who was the better dancer: Nicole Scherzinger or Meryl Davis? Also (and I had to throw this question in too), which were your favorite dances for each?

I think Nicole was the better dancer hands down. Meryl’s Tango with Val was brilliant in my opinion and her Tango and Freestyle took my breath away with Maks. However, most of her other dances felt weak to me in some way. They didn’t give me that “moment”..and especially the faster dances when she had to move her hips. As for Nicole, it seemed there wasn’t one dance she couldn’t master. Every week, she came out full of intensity for with something to prove for each. My favorite dances for Nicole were Argentine Tango, the Paso Doble, the Jive, and the freestyle.

May 26, 2014 I Written By

I'm a fashion and music fan....and I have always loved dancing too of any kind. Dancing With The Stars seems to have this way of bringing all of those things together. One of my favorite dancing quotes at the moment: "No matter what, nobody can take away the dance you've already had...." ~Gleb Savchenko . For fun music and dance mixes, visit WilUnleashed Soundcloud.

DWTS 16 Pros: Food for Thought – Did Maks Try to “Pull an Edyta”?

I know we’re all still reeling from the whiplash of Pro Watch – old pros are sitting this one out, entirely new pros are being brought in, troupe members are getting promoted, and the status of some pros seems to change from “out” to “in” and back again on a daily basis.  The general question on everyone’s lip: “WTF is going on at DWTS??!!!”

While I don’t have a ton of insider info about what’s going on with the casting (even the insiders seem to be somewhat in the dark this season!), I do have a theory or two, and some knowledge of previous seasons to help back up said theories – and I’m about to share one with you that may or may not put things in perspective, and may or may not help ease your concerns…but it’s one that at least makes some sense, given what we’ve seen unfolding the past week or so and what we know of previous seasons.  Take it with a biiiiig grain of salt, as I’m not 100% confident in the veracity of some of the claims made in it.  And Maks fans of the hypersensitive persuasion should probably just stop reading right now.  :-)

First, let’s go back in time to about 2.5 years ago – the week or so leading up to the season 11 cast annoucement.  Lacey had tweeted something cranky (and characteristically “Lacey”) about not being part of that season’s cast, and we were led to believe that she would be sitting that season out.  About 36-48 hours later, we were smacked in the face by the news that Edyta had suddenly quit DWTS, and Lacey was then excitedly tweeting that she was back in as one of the pros.  What happened??? Allegedly (and I’m using this as a precaution, as the info I’m about to share has been culled from multiple sources – some more credible than others, and not all of it matches up), Edyta had tried leveraging in her negotiations with TPTB – some think she was upset that her husband Alec wasn’t getting asked back as a pro, some say she was upset about the partner she got (which confuses me – read on), some say she was holding out for more $$$, who knows.  Whatever it was, I guess Edyta tried to throw her weight around as the longest-tenured pro on the show (at the time) and gave the producers an ultimatum: “You give me [insert demand here] or I quit.” To which the producers replied, “K, bye then!” I’m guessing Edyta wasn’t expecting them to call her bluff, and she also doesn’t strike me as the type who will swallow their pride easily, so of course, she had to follow through on her promise, and out she went. Read more..

February 25, 2013 I Written By

Ultrasound sales specialist by day, semi-knowledgeable DWTS fan by night...with a smattering of hair & makeup enthusiast, occasional model, and crazy cat lady peppered in to make things REALLY interesting ;-) I might pee my pants in happiness if Donnie Wahlberg ever does DWTS - or if they ever use "Sunglasses at Night" as a paso doble. Check out some of my other work at pureamericasgottalent.com!

DWTS 15 All-Stars: The Great “Previous Dance Experience” Debate – Bristol Palin Edition

We’re mere days away from the premiere of the all-star season – who’s getting pumped??? :-) I find myself surprisingly excited about it, given that I was feeling pretty ho-hum about it only a few months back.  Be sure to keep a close eye on Heidi’s “Who’s Dancing What” post – you never know when someone’s cha-cha song or dance order or phone number might pop up ;-) #justsayin

Anywho, if you’re feeling nostalgic, you can view all of the previous editions of this series here.  Now buckle in, kids, because I’m about to tackle the ups and downs (but mainly just downs…) of the most polarizing contestant in DWTS history: Bristol Palin.

For Bristol’s best dance, I picked her tango:

As her worst dance, what else could I pick but that god-awful monkey suit jive?:

Ok, I will admit that Bristol is not the worst dancer we’ve ever seen on the show (I think’s a dubious honor reserved for Master P, with Kate Gosselin as the runner-up).  On the contrary, I actually thought she was relatively good the first few weeks of the competition – I even threw a few votes her way in week 1.  I think what ended up getting to me as the season wore on, though, was the fact that all the other contestants seemed to be improving by leaps & bounds…while Bristol just seemed to barely muddle through some of the dances, and hit a bit of a plateau in terms of improvement.  To add insult to injury, we were losing MUCH better dancers each week that Bristol remained – and by the time the finale rolled around, Bristol seemed to have developed a sense of entitlement, and copped an attitude when she wasn’t getting the 9’s and 10’s she felt she deserved.  In the end, she just left a bad taste in my mouth, even if some of her dancing really wasn’t all that bad.  SOME.  :-) In rewatching a lot of Bristol’s dances, I noticed that she tended to do MUCH better when she was able to stay in-hold for the bulk of it – so most of the ballroom dances she did went quite a bit more smoothly than the Latin ones.  I don’t know if Mark holding onto her and leading her so directly helped improve her confidence or what, but she moved a lot more cleanly & clearly in dances like the tango – no missed steps, she stayed on time, and had pretty good posture.  And I blame Mark for the silly air guitar break in the middle :-P

On the other hand, in dances where she had to separate from Mark and do some of the dance on her own, she either barely muddled through or seemed to fall apart completely – case in point? The dreaded monkey suit jive.  Right off the bat, she seemed to blank on a good 10-15 seconds of side-by-side jive choreo.  Then, once the suit came off (and even that was pretty rough), she never seemed to get 100% into the groove of the dance, and always seemed like she was 1 step behind or ahead of Mark.  And although we kind of expected it, based on her complete lack of experience in performing, Bristol wasn’t exactly the best at connecting with the character of a dance – and when she didn’t know what to do, she seemed to resort to an expression that reminded her of back home in Alaska: deer in the rifle sights ;-) Maybe this time around, she’ll be a bit more comfortable and will be able to let loose and have fun.  Or not…who knows.  I’m still of the opinion that she likely won’t last past the midpoint of the competition, this time around – she’s up against much better dancers with much bigger fanbases, and I daresay she’s lost a bit of that “single teen mom” appeal she had 2 years ago.  Will be interesting to see what Mark is able to conjure up…

Court’s verdict: Probably the weakest all-around performer/dancer this season, and Mark needs to work on getting her performance value up to snuff…as well as making sure she knows her choreography and is confident enough to not forget it.  She should probably also work on her media presence – she needs to be as likeable as possible if she wants to stand a chance against some of the more popular contestants.

Thoughts on Bristol?

September 21, 2012 I Written By

Ultrasound sales specialist by day, semi-knowledgeable DWTS fan by night...with a smattering of hair & makeup enthusiast, occasional model, and crazy cat lady peppered in to make things REALLY interesting ;-) I might pee my pants in happiness if Donnie Wahlberg ever does DWTS - or if they ever use "Sunglasses at Night" as a paso doble. Check out some of my other work at pureamericasgottalent.com!

DWTS “Who Wore it Better?” – The Pre-Season 15 All-Star Edition, Part I!

This season, we opted to do things a bit differently – as we have with just about every other regular feature we do each season, since the format is a bit wacky, to say the least :-P First, we’ve divided WWIB into two parts – mainly to accomodate the fact that Kirstie & Maks’ and the 13th couple’s (who we now know to be Sabrina & Louis) promo photos have yet to be released, but also to buy us some time for the labor-intensive task of finding good pictures for some of these :-) Secondly, we’ve included the couples’ promo photos from their original seasons for comparison as well.  But as always, we’ve offered up our usual snark commentary on each of the costumes, for your enjoyment 8-)

Battle of the turquoise & black lace corset dress/Kelly & Alec vs. Kelly & Val:  Kelly & Alec’s season 1 promo pic vs. Kelly & Val’s season 15 promo pic vs. Edyta in the season 9 pro tango demo

Courtney: The Iceman cometh! Wow, even Alec’s promo pic screams “I have no emotions” to me.  And while Kelly is a bit better, I still wish she’d actually smile in her promo pics – the whole “smoldery non-smile” she does just seems like she’s trying too hard to me.  And I’m probably the only one that feels this way, judging from some of everyone’s initial comments on the promo photos, but I’m not really all that wild about Kelly & Val’s pic…you’ll see I’m not much of a fan of the couples that went the “smoldery” route with their promo pix.  As for the costume itself – gotta go with Edyta on this one.  Granted, it’s hard to hold a candle to Edyta in pretty much ANY costume, but I think I like it better with a lace skirt, as opposed to a fringed one.  And while I was cursing under my breath while putting this edition together about how BAD some of the costumes have gotten since Randall left, I thank my lucky stars we’re not still stuck with Designs to Shine, who costumed the first season. Can we say “tacky”? 8-O

Heidi: Val sez, “You…are sooo sexy.” To which Kelly sez, “You are sexy, but I am sleeping with my cousin’s best friend’s husband’s brother and am simply toying with you as a cover to hide our true looove….” That is my long winded way of saying, Kelly is a soap actress…they only do smolder.  Sometimes well, sometimes not – and Val is a huge step up from Alec in terms of emotion and Kelly has evolved to smoldering with her mouth *closed*. :-) The dress you ask? I go with Edyta sans fishnets.  Although I think it’s cuter in the shorter length.

The verdict: Just say no to soap opera smolder.  Read more..

August 28, 2012 I Written By

Ultrasound sales specialist by day, semi-knowledgeable DWTS fan by night...with a smattering of hair & makeup enthusiast, occasional model, and crazy cat lady peppered in to make things REALLY interesting ;-) I might pee my pants in happiness if Donnie Wahlberg ever does DWTS - or if they ever use "Sunglasses at Night" as a paso doble. Check out some of my other work at pureamericasgottalent.com!

DWTS 15 All-Star Team Name Suggestions!

It’s that time of year again, folks – time for the newly-announced couples to pick a cheesy team name for the season :-) Below are a few suggestions that you guys tweeted me, and I’ve also included the original team names of some of the couples who got their original partner.  Feel free to keep adding your suggestions in the comments, and I’ll try to update the post every so often so we have a good list.  Remember to tweet the link to this list to the pros & celebs when they start asking for suggestions – you never know if they’ll end up picking your suggestion!

Kirstie Alley & Maksim Chmerkovskiy (original team name from season 12: Team GMak)

Team GMak is BACK!
**Team KStick (according to Kirstie, this is their name for this season)

Pamela Anderson & Tristan MacManus

Team MacAnderson
Team MacPam
Team TristAnderson
Team Tristamela
Team Braywatch

Helio Castroneves & Chelsie Hightower

Team Chelio
Team Chelso
Team Castrower
Team Hellsie

Joey Fatone & Kym Johnson

Team JFK
Team Koey
Team Fat One

Shawn Johnson & Derek Hough

Team Sherek
Team Shrek
Team D-Shawn
Team Dawn
Team Shough
Team RoughToughShough
Team Blondie

Drew Lachey & Anna Trebunskaya

Team Lacheyskaya
Team Drewanna
Team 98 Degrees of Redhead
Team Trebuchey
Team Red AmbiCheyOn
Team 99 Degrees
**Team TreLachey (according to Anna, this is what they picked as their official team name)

Gilles Marini & Peta Murgatroyd

Team Geta
Team Marinitroyd
Team Pecs & Legs
Team Petarini

Kelly Monaco & Val Chmerkovskiy

Team Chmonaco
Team Vally

Apolo Ohno & Karina Smirnoff

Team Ohnoff
Team Apolonoff
Team OhYes!
Team KarOhno
Team Fire & Ice
Team Smirnoff on Ice
Team Apolina

Bristol Palin & Mark Ballas (original team name from season 11: Team Ballin’)

Team BrisMark
Team Ballistol

Melissa Rycroft & Tony Dovolani (original team name from season 9: ?)

Team Melony
Team Dovcroft
Team Pearly Whites
Team Me-To
Team Mel-T
Team Brat Pack

Emmitt Smith & Cheryl Burke

Team Smurke
Team Chemmitt

Keep giving us your suggestions! :-D

August 13, 2012 I Written By

Ultrasound sales specialist by day, semi-knowledgeable DWTS fan by night...with a smattering of hair & makeup enthusiast, occasional model, and crazy cat lady peppered in to make things REALLY interesting ;-) I might pee my pants in happiness if Donnie Wahlberg ever does DWTS - or if they ever use "Sunglasses at Night" as a paso doble. Check out some of my other work at pureamericasgottalent.com!

DWTS 15 All-Star Cast Rumors List: Who’s In, Who’s Out, Who’s a Maybe, Who Knows???

With all of the coverage of the upcoming all-star season we’ve been doing, we realize it can get a little hard to keep up and remember who’s said yes, who’s said no, who’s just a maybe, etc.  So for the sake of maintaining everyone’s sanity and trying to keep at least some degree of organization, here’s a handy list of what celebs we’ve been covering as it pertains to the all-star season, broken down by their original season, along with a brief summary of where they stand.  We’ll keep this post stuck to the main page until the cast announcement, and we’ll post updates in red as they come in. 

ETA #1: Updated with coverage of Joey Fatone & Trista Sutter, and an update of Ralph Macchio. 

ETA #2: Added info on Kelly Monaco. 

ETA #3: Update on Maria Menounos. 

ETA #4: A little over 24 hours until the cast announcement and updates & rumors coming fast & furious! Thanks Vogue & Heidi :-)Updates on Gilles Marini, Joey Fatone, Melissa Rycroft, Stacy Keibler, Kendra Wilkinson, & Carson Kressley; added info on Melissa Joan-Hart & Pamela Anderson. 

Season 1:

Trista Sutter – a few interesting tweets that seemed to imply she was heading somewhere to do something secret, but now says she is definitely not taking part in the all-star season :-(
Kelly Monaco – hinted at a GH fan event that she was “going to need fans’ help with something that’s getting announced next Friday!”

Season 2:

Stacy Keibler – played coy, said “possibly” if she was asked to return; says we’ll “have to wait & find out”; rumored as a possible X-Factor host; Entertainment Weekly claiming she’s not likely to do the show
Drew Lachey – said he “had a blast and would be open to doing it again”, but wasn’t sure how things would play out

Season 3:

Jerry Springer – said he may do SOMETHING for the show and would love to be in the audience, but wouldn’t dance again
Mario Lopez – spilled the beans about being asked to do the all-star season on Live with Kelly way back in May, and was thinking about it; however, he now says he’s “too busy” and “doesn’t think he’ll be able to do it” – mentioned as a rumored candidate to host X-factor
Joey Lawrence – asked fans on Twitter to vote for him to get on the all-star season

Season 4:

Joey Fatone – says he isn’t really sure if he’d do it or not, and that he hasn’t gotten a call yet; Entertainment Weekly claiming he’s “likely” to do the show Read more..

July 13, 2012 I Written By

Ultrasound sales specialist by day, semi-knowledgeable DWTS fan by night...with a smattering of hair & makeup enthusiast, occasional model, and crazy cat lady peppered in to make things REALLY interesting ;-) I might pee my pants in happiness if Donnie Wahlberg ever does DWTS - or if they ever use "Sunglasses at Night" as a paso doble. Check out some of my other work at pureamericasgottalent.com!

GSN Drops DWTS Reruns from Lineup

I realize this is super, super late, but I think we all got so swept up in the hustle & bustle of season 14 that no one really even noticed this – plus, it happened rather quietly, so I myself didn’t even notice until I was cleaning up my DVR yesterday and saw that there was nothing set up to record on GSN…but it piqued my interest, so I’m sharing it now, and thought I’d get your thoughts on it :-)

According to Buzzerblog, GSN dropped reruns of DWTS from its lineup starting April 16:

That didn’t last long, did it?  GSN’s most recent attempt at reality shows, exclusive off-network reruns of Dancing With the Stars, are on their way out.  The reruns of ABC’s popular dancing game show, which have proved to be anything but popular for GSN, are leaving the network’s schedule starting the week of April 16th.  GSN debuted the show on Saturday, January 21st.  The debut failed to crack the top 15 most watched shows.  First-run reruns averaged 304,000 viewers and has gone down hill since.  Most recent figures had the show down to 173,000 viewers on average.  Reruns of shows like Family Feud take its place.

I have to say, I’m a little surprised – granted, I was not expecting the reruns to get even a fraction of the ratings that the current seasons get, but with all the publicity they did back in January (and all the hype surrounding GSN buying the rights), I would have thought they would have at least gotten some bang for their buck in terms of ratings, from fans of the show…but 173k is downright meager, especially when you take into account that reruns of Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader? and Family Feud pull in upwards of 500k in viewers for GSN.  And when you take into account that DWTS was the lowest-rated show in a primetime slot on GSN the last week it aired (all the shows below it were in early AM slots, which aren’t expected to pull in a ton of viewers), that’s…pretty bad. I have to wonder if it was just PureDWTS fans that were tuning in, after all the free publicity we gave GSN during the big launch ;-)

So I guess my big question is, “What went wrong?” It did seem a little strange that they started off airing season 4, but then skipped ahead to season 12 – did the fact that season 12 only happened a year ago deter some viewers, who would have rather seen an older season? Or were the odds just stacked against them when they aired reruns concurrent with a new season? Or was there just never really a huge demand for DWTS reruns from the get-go? Who knows.  But I have to wonder if reruns might fare better now that they’ve announced that they’re doing an all-star season – perhaps there might be more a demand for reruns, so fans can relive the magic from the first time around? I do think it will be interesting to see what GSN’s next move is – they still own the rights to seasons 4-13, so if they wanted to start airing them again, they could – hell, I think they’d have better luck in a summer slot, anyway, plus they have the boon of the all-star season looming. But will they even bother, given how much of a failure their first attempts at reruns were? I don’t know that there’s really a demand on any other network for DWTS reruns, so I doubt they’d have an easy time selling off the rights to another network, other than BBC America (they own the rights to seasons 1-3, but have yet to actually do anything with them).  I’m just hoping we get at least some of the seasons back on Hulu, so I don’t have to scavenge & beg for pictures everytime I want to do an edition of “Who Wore It Better”? :-)

So what do you guys think of the whole situation? Are you upset that you won’t catch the reruns…or do you not really care? Do you think GSN should give it another shot…or try and sell the rights to the reruns as fast as they can?

June 4, 2012 I Written By

Ultrasound sales specialist by day, semi-knowledgeable DWTS fan by night...with a smattering of hair & makeup enthusiast, occasional model, and crazy cat lady peppered in to make things REALLY interesting ;-) I might pee my pants in happiness if Donnie Wahlberg ever does DWTS - or if they ever use "Sunglasses at Night" as a paso doble. Check out some of my other work at pureamericasgottalent.com!

Court’s DWTS Las Vegas Adventure (Live Show Review & Other Miscellanery)

As many of you know, I was in Las Vegas last weekend and had the pleasure of seeing the DWTS live show at the Tropicana – which, of course, I will review for you guys, since certain other individuals *cough*JOHN*cough* haven’t managed to write the 2nd half of their review of the premiere of said show ;-) This post could get a bit wordy, as I took quite a few notes (and just have a really good memory, to boot) and I’ll throw in a few other possibly-unrelated-to-DWTS details for context, as well as some general Vegas info, since some of you have asked about my trip – so if you’re only interested in my review of the show, feel free to skip the next few paragraphs.  And if you hate spoilers (i.e. you want to be COMPLETELY surprised when you see the show), I’d either just skip this post altogether or just read my overall take at the bottom – because I’m not holding back.  You’ve been warned ;-) And special thanks go to Heidi, for helpin’ a girl out with some picture merges that were driving me cray-cray :-P

So why was I in Vegas in the first place, you ask? My best friend Kendra is getting married at the end of July, and she wanted a bachelorette party for the ages – so naturally, we HAD to go Vegas :-) There were 12 of us altogether (11 rowdy bachelorettes and 1 gay bachelor, who I must say put us all to shame with how fabulously he was dressed the entire trip ;-)), and the majority of us stayed at the Flamingo, since we were able to get a great rate on standard rooms – with 4 girls to a room, it was only $82 total for each of us for 3 nights, which is pretty awesome for a well-known hotel on the strip that isn’t a total dive.  Overall, I wouldn’t say the Flamingo is a particularly special or ritzy hotel (if that’s what you’re looking for, I’d go with the Bellagio, Palazzo, or Venetian…but be prepared to shell out big $$$), but if you’re on a budget, it’s certainly more than sufficient – the rooms are clean and the decor is kitchy & cute (think 1960’s, Rat Pack, original Ocean’s Eleven – lots of dots, stripes, retro furniture, and of course, pink :-)).  I’m very into the nostalgia of Vegas, so the Flamingo appealed to me in that it was originally built by infamous mobster Bugsy Siegel, and legend has it that the actual motive behind his murder was to change the management of the Flamingo.  But anyway – if you’re in Vegas, I definitely recommend trying their Paradise Garden Buffet – it’s pretty affordable, as far as buffets in Vegas go, and is quite good…especially the brunch buffet.  Plus the views of their courtyard and flock of live flamingoes are gorgeous :-) Also at the Flamingo? Donny & Marie Osmond’s live show – I didn’t see it (no time, and honestly, not much of a desire), but I did see these in the lobby:

The one on the left is Donny’s costume from his freestyle with Kym in season 9, as well as his MBT (and yes, according to the guest services director that I asked, it is his real MBT – apparently he insisted it be put in the case with his costume); the one on the right is Marie’s dress from her quickstep with Jonathan in season 5 (and one of those freaky dolls she designs – guess they had to put SOMETHING there when they found out that Donny wanted to display his MBT, although I’m not sure why they didn’t display this doll instead).  I found Marie’s costume pretty unremarkable up close – for as fabulous as it looked on the show, upon further scrutiny, it’s really just a tan silk gown with some gems glued on; but Donny’s suit is very well-made and clearly took a lot of work.  Interesting how different the costumes look on tv vs. in person (more on that later). Read more..

May 19, 2012 I Written By

Ultrasound sales specialist by day, semi-knowledgeable DWTS fan by night...with a smattering of hair & makeup enthusiast, occasional model, and crazy cat lady peppered in to make things REALLY interesting ;-) I might pee my pants in happiness if Donnie Wahlberg ever does DWTS - or if they ever use "Sunglasses at Night" as a paso doble. Check out some of my other work at pureamericasgottalent.com!

DWTS 14, Week 7 – Who’s Got the Edge in the Team Dances?

So we now know for sure what the team dances are (paso doble & tango) and who’s on what team (Katherine, Maria, Jaleel, & Roshon vs. William, Donald, & Melissa).  So who’s gonna win? Let’s see how they stack up.  I looked at several factors that could come into play in helping to determine who has the advantage – experience level of the pros on each team, experience level of the couples on each team, number of couples on each team, what dance each team has, and other miscellaneous factors that may affect the outcome.  So let’s get to it!

Pro Team Dance Experience

Derek: 6 wins (seasons 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 13), 0 losses, 0 ties; average team dance score: 27.5
Cheryl: 4 wins (seasons 7, 8, 10, 13), 1 loss (season 11), 0 ties; average team dance score: 26.8
Kym: 2 wins (seasons 7 & 9), 1 loss (season 13), 1 tie (season 12); average team dance score: 25.75*
Maks: 2 wins (seasons 11 & 13), 1 loss (season 10), 1 tie (season 12); average team dance score: 25*
Chelsie: 1 win (season 8), 0 losses, 1 tie (season 12); average team dance score: 25*
Mark: 0 wins, 2 losses (seasons 8 & 11), 1 tie (season 12); average team dance score: 23.67*
Peta: 0 wins, 0 losses, 0 ties (never been in a team dance); average team dance score: 0

*Since there were 4 judges’ scores given for the team dances in season 12, I subtracted Donnie Burns’ score from the two team dances in that season in order to normalize with all of the other seasons, which only had 3 judges’ scores. 

Team Tango: I’d say their biggest advantage is having Derek – the guy’s undefeated, so he’s clearly figured out the formula for what works and what doesn’t work in the team dances.  Say what you will about team dances being a product of all the pros working together (I agree to some extent), but the only common denominator in every single team dance win has been Derek, regardless of what other pros have been on each team with him, what the dance style has been, etc.  Many of the pros have also gone on record as saying that they tend to let Derek take the lead when choreographing the group portions of the team dance, so I’d say he probably has a lot to do with the success of each of the teams he’s on, as the judges do tend to really harp on synchonization, interesting formation patterns, and overall performance quality in the group portion of team dances.  I’d say Kym is an asset as well – she’s been on a team with Derek twice before (one of those times was another team tango), and when she hasn’t been on a team with him, she’s managed to tie once, and the 1 team dance she lost was not really all that bad, IMO.  I don’t really know if Chelsie is battle-tested enough to say whether she’s good in the team dance or not – but I don’t get the impression that she is one to make waves, so she will probably be very cooperative and easy to get along with.  My only concern is Mark – he seemed rather volatile in the team dance rehearsals in season 12, and seems to have a penchant for very flashy, high-energy, in-your-face choreo…which doesn’ t always translate well in the team dances.  I’m hoping that he lets Derek take the lead on the group choreography, and really focuses on giving Katherine some good, solid solo choreography this week.

Team Paso: While I think they don’t have quite the same edge that Team Katherine does, I don’t think they’re super weak, either.  Both Cheryl & Maks have been on teams with Derek before, so they’ve probably at least picked up a few tricks and strategies – I would say Maks is probably the stronger choreographer, judging from what I’ve seen him do in other team dances and pro dances.  The big question mark here is Peta – we just don’t know how she’s going to fare, since this will be her first team dance.  I doubt she’s going to suck at it (I don’t think anyone has really sucked at it – except maybe the unfortunate souls in the team mambo in season 8…), but it may take her a little longer to really get a feel for how the team dances work and what to do for Donald’s solo.  I think she’s probably going to rely on Cheryl & Maks for the group choreo, and isn’t likely to make any sort of big fuss, since she’s the new kid on the block.

Who has the edge in pro experience? I’ve got to give this one to Team Tango – they’ve got the only undefeated pro, and each of the other pros has been in at least 2 team dances. Read more..

April 26, 2012 I Written By

Ultrasound sales specialist by day, semi-knowledgeable DWTS fan by night...with a smattering of hair & makeup enthusiast, occasional model, and crazy cat lady peppered in to make things REALLY interesting ;-) I might pee my pants in happiness if Donnie Wahlberg ever does DWTS - or if they ever use "Sunglasses at Night" as a paso doble. Check out some of my other work at pureamericasgottalent.com!

The Top 10 Worst First Week Cha-Cha’s in DWTS History

Ahhhh, yes – the cha-cha.  The only first week dance that has remained the same in all 14 seasons of the show – they’ve often vacillated between the waltz, foxtrot, and Viennese waltz as the first week ballroom dance from season to season, but they’ve always had the cha-cha as a week 1 Latin dance.  That’s 75 regular week 1 cha-cha’s (I’m not counting the cha-cha relay from season 9 – the scoring is too funky) for me to run the stats on, to give us an idea of what we might expect in the coming week :-) So before I run down the list of the biggest “Oh god, that was baaaaaad!” week 1 cha-cha moments, here are a few interesting cha-cha stats:

*The lowest cha-cha score in DWTS history is 12 – and it’s a 3-way tie between Master P & Ashly, Tucker & Elena, and Jeff & Edyta.  Two of the couples were eliminated the first week of their respective seasons – and all 3 female pros are no longer on the show :-) (ok, that last one was probably not a direct cause of a bad cha-cha, but just an interesting coincidence ;-))

*Five former DWTS champions did cha-cha as their week 1 dance (Drew, Emmitt, Apolo, Brooke, & Hines).

*The pro who’s done the most week 1 cha-cha’s is Cheryl – she’s started 9 of her 12 seasons on the show with a cha-cha.

*A female celeb didn’t dance the cha-cha as a week 1 dance until season 5 – up until that point, the ladies had always done a ballroom dance the first week, and the men had always done cha-cha.

Now…without further ado…I give you the worst week 1 cha-cha’s in DWTS history :-) Season 14 celebs, pay attention! This is for your own good…do not try to emulate these routines!

10.) Clyde & Elena, season 4

I never got the feeling that Clyde was actually making a genuine effort during his season, really.  I think his handlers probably signed him up for the show just to get him some exposure, and it was never something Clyde really wanted to do – he just seemed to do the bare minimum each week and probably hoped to get voted off quickly. His whole “outrage” over Len pointing out that some couples weren’t practicing enough just really made me think that Clyde the Glide doth protest too much – he wasn’t putting in the hours and he knew it.  On top of the apathy, there was a huge height difference between he & Elena, and at 6’7″, he was generally just kinda ungainly…add that altogether and you’ve got a cha-cha that’s just kind of an awkward non-event.

9.) Billy Ray & Karina, season 4

I’m not sure who I feel worse for here – Billy Ray or Karina.  Billy Ray really was kind of “a left-footed hillbilly from Kentucky” (his own words), and this cha-cha was a pretty hot mess.  I like to call this “drunk uncle at a wedding” dancing – some random grooving & flailing & forgotten footwork from Billy Ray while Karina did some cha-cha around him.   But I will say this – unlike Clyde, who had probably phoned it in before the season even started, I do think Billy Ray was giving it his all the entire season.  This poor guy REALLY wanted to do well for Karina, and he did put in the effort – but some people are just not natural dancers, and Billy Ray is unfortunately in that camp. Read more..

March 12, 2012 I Written By

Ultrasound sales specialist by day, semi-knowledgeable DWTS fan by night...with a smattering of hair & makeup enthusiast, occasional model, and crazy cat lady peppered in to make things REALLY interesting ;-) I might pee my pants in happiness if Donnie Wahlberg ever does DWTS - or if they ever use "Sunglasses at Night" as a paso doble. Check out some of my other work at pureamericasgottalent.com!