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DWTS13 Freestyle Retrospective: The Top 10 Worst Freestyles in DWTS History

So every season, as we draw nearer & nearer to the finale, it seems like the question on everyone’s lips is “What are they gonna do for their freestyle?” We debate which pros are the stronger freestyle choreographers, which celebs can handle the lifts, who’s got the most dance skills, who is going to struggle, etc. So Heidi & I decided to tackle the big question: what makes a good DWTS freestyle?

While everyone may argue over what works and what doesn’t, with 12 seasons under our belts, we have enough historical data to see some patterns – and there are definitely some things that all good freestyles seem to have in common, and some things that the bad freestyles have in common. Today we’re starting with the worst – these are examples of what this season’s finalists should likely avoid, and of which they should probably try to do the opposite :-)

A little insight into how we arrived at this list: I made a list of my own, and then bumped it against a list Heidi made and we looked for similarities. I also asked for suggestions on Twitter, to see if my finger was on the pulse of the more dedicated viewing audience; I polled my co-workers (likely more representative of the average viewer than most of us lurking on the Net ;-)) as well to get their thoughts. Turns out, most of you guys came up with the same examples of good & bad – which is good, since it shows that opinions on freestyles seem to be pretty universal. But without further ado, I give you the top 10 WORST freestyles in DWTS history:

10.) Chelsea Kane & Mark Ballas, season 12

Courtney: This was one that a lot of you seemed divided on – some of you loved it, some of you hated it. I ultimately decided to include it in the “worst” list because it seemed to have something in common with a lot of the other freestyles on this list: it wasn’t reflective of the celeb it was meant to showcase. Yes, it was high-energy, it was well-executed (for the most part), and it was entertaining – but what did it really have to do with Chelsea? While she managed to keep up with Mark fairly well and got through the choreography, I never really got the feeling that it was a routine she really felt connected to, or that she even would have picked for herself. It was as if she had given Mark carte blanche with the routine and he chose everything – the music, the costumes, the theme, etc., and Chelsea was just along for the ride. I think choosing an obscure song didn’t help, and the choreo seemed to showcase Mark more than Chelsea – the poor girl just seemed to be trying to keep her head above water. Add to that some bland costumes and a wardrobe malfunction, and you’ve got a freestyle that’s overall just “Meh.” Definitely not 30-worthy, IMO.

Heidi: Well, this one I would have put in “dishonorable mentions” but it’s almost in that pile anyway, at slot #10. :-) The problem here, like you say, was Chelsea wasn’t connected to it (and similar ideas appear throughout this post). Not only that, but the music didn’t really match the costumes and none of it matched the choreo. It seemed all mixed up to me. It had a latin flavor, yet they were doing a light hip hop type choreo (I don’t really know how else to explain that) and their costumes matched neither. Then – why the lights and the bike?? I feel like I missed something on this one. There was also a section where it seemed like they just went from one cool trick to the next. The best freestyles (including some of Mark’s) had a good bit of actual ballroom dancing thrown in in places. This one is just a bit weird for me.

9.) Evan Lysacek & Anna Trebunskaya, season 10

Heidi: PEOPLE, unless your pro is Dmitry – do NOT argue with them about choreography. At all. Geez. That said, this is another freestyle that was good on paper, but in execution just didn’t work for some reason. Clearly it worked in person, since the studio crowd loved it…but the dance didn’t seem to fit either Evan OR Footloose. When Derek did Grease with Brooke, there was a clear, but brief, homage to the movie. The dance went with the song and it worked perfectly for Brooke. When he did a song from Dirty Dancing with Jennifer – again, a subtle, brief homage to the movie and it worked for Jennifer because, of course – she was in the movie. I think by the time they get to the freestyle the pros are just drained and they forget to really tie it altogether – and if you pick an iconic song, you have to really tie it altogether so that the dancing fits the iconic song but also works for your partner. It seems like this dance doesn’t fit either. He didn’t dance it badly by any stretch, but neither did Gilles in their Flashdance freestyle. That doesn’t make it good.

Courtney: I was always a bit puzzled as to why they picked Footloose – did one of them really, really like the movie? Or was it just another easy, dance movie theme to go with? I think that’s the one big difference between a freestyle like Jennifer’s and a freestyle like Evan’s (or Mya’s, or Gilles’, or Stacy’s – see below) – relevance. Dirty Dancing was relevant to Jennifer; but was Footloose really relevant to Evan? I want a freestyle to basically sum up a partnership for me – I want it to feel like both the celeb & the pro connect to both the dance and each other, and for the routine to feel like a nice closure to their season together. For me, going with Footloose as their theme left more questions than answers. Ooh, and can I just say that I think bringing in an outside choreographer is the absolute kiss of death? It doesn’t see to mesh well with the chemistry the couple has forged over the course of the season, and usually leads to coupled being led dangerously out of their comfort zone. And both Evan & Anna seemed uncomfortable with this one – almost pained, at times. Read more..

November 16, 2011 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!

DWTS13 Who Danced it Better? The “Most Memorable Year” Edition

As many of you may have noticed, costumes aren’t the only things that get reused on DWTS – songs get recycled as well, sometimes ad infinitum! After oodles of requests from you guys for a feature like this, I’ve finally carved out the time to sit down and make it happen :-) Marianya actually used to do these posts awhile back – if you go to the search bar and type in “dance comparison”, you’ll see several editions she did for season 10.  Heidi & I are going to try and do it as well as she did, but you know us – if it doesn’t involve snark, we probably have the attention span of goldfish. :-)

Battle of Beyonce’s “Crazy in Love”

 This was actually the VERY FIRST song ever used on DWTS, when Joey McIntyre & Ashly Costa (née Delgrosso) danced their cha-cha to it back in season 1…

 After that, it didn’t pop until again until 10 seasons later, as the opening pro number for the 200th episode results show in season 11:

And of course, most recently, Kristin chose it as her “most memorable year” song for her samba with Mark:

Court’s take: I was pleasantly surprised at how the band managed to tweak the beat to feel more “samba-y” for Kristin, but as much as she tried to shake her booty and flip her hair – she just didn’t manage to fully embody Beyonce’s swag. Loved Joey & Ashly’s attitude for their cha-cha, although in retrospect Joey was probably not as good as I thought he was back then – the standard of competition has definitely gone up in 13 seasons ;-) But for me the real standout was the 200th episode pro dance; loved the fact that we saw multiple styles in it (cha-cha, quickstep, a little bit of samba) as well as a TON of pros from the past coming, almost literally, out of the woodwork – all the usual suspects, as well as some rarer ones like Anna D., Corky, Ashly, & even Inna (remember her?) While they may have a bit of an unfair edge…gotta give it to the pros in this one.  That dance was HOT.

 Battle of No Doubt’s “It’s My Life”

 First, Louie Vito had it for his foxtrot with Chelsie in season 9:

 And of course, our favorite fashionista, Carson, tangoed to it with Anna for his “most memorable year” dance:

 Court’s take: Poor Louie never stood a chance against the fabulousity of Carson :-P Plus the song just feels better as a tango for me. 

 Battle of Frank Sinatra’s “Fly Me to the Moon”

 Fittingly, it was astronaut Buzz Aldrin’s foxtrot with Ashly in season 10…

 

And then Rob honored his late dad with the song when he foxtrotted with Cheryl to it this week:

 Court’s take: While I thought Buzz was adorable, his age kinda limited his range of motion – and by extension, the tempo of the music he danced to.  It just felt so slooooow.  I actually really enjoyed Rob’s – it was light and carefree, and Rob looked like he really connected to the song and enjoyed himself.

So whose renditions of these songs do YOU guys prefer? :-)

October 7, 2011 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!

DWTS13 Preliminary Power Rankings, Part I

 It’s time once again for me to dust off my crystal ball and attempt (often in vain) to predict who the winners & losers of the season will be :-) Most of you are probably familiar with the power rankings, but if you aren’t, here’s a quick run-down: I do a power ranking after each performance show that ranks the couples from most likely to stay to most likely to go home – it’s essentially a prediction of who’s going home and who’s got staying power.  And kids, please – keep in mind that it’s not based solely on scores, or popularity, or running order, etc. It’s a complex formula of many factors – fanbase, dance ability, entertainment value, choreography, scores, yadda yadda yadda.  And before the season starts, I like to do a “preliminary” ranking – a prediction that just takes into account what we know about the couples right now, without ever having seen them dance live (rehearsal videos don’t count – those can differ drastically from the final product!).  Make sense? Keep in mind that this is just my opinion – differing ones are welcome and great to discuss, and there are no right or wrong answers ;-) So let’s start with places 12 through 7 – the couples that I don’t see lasting past the midpoint of the season. 

12.) Ron Artest & Peta Murgatroyd - I really want Peta to stick around for at least a few weeks this season to show us what she can do, but unfortunately, I’ve got a lot of reservations about Ron…and it kinda stinks that Peta’s so new that her fanbase is likely not going to be able to compensate for a lack of support on Ron’s behalf.   First of all, the physical problem: Ron’s 6’7″ and Peta’s 5’7″, so even with heels on, Peta’s gonna have quite a bit of height to make up for.  It’s not impossible (ask Cheryl, who at 5’4″ partnered 6’7″ Rick Fox somewhat effectively in season 11), but it’s not necessarily easy or visually-pleasing, either.  Ron’s an athlete, so that might help a bit – but not all of the athletes that have done the show have been natural movers (Clyde Drexler comes to mind).  Now the greyer area: Ron’s never been one to hold his tongue, and he’s infamous for rather erratic behavior.  He’s come a long way since the infamous Pacers/Pistons brawl, but he’s still kinda wacky…and I’m honestly not sure whether that’s a boon or a burden when it comes to fanbase.  He’s well-known, but I’m interested to see how many people he’s turned off with his antics.  Another potential problem: from the few videos I’ve seen of he & Peta so far, I’m not picking up a lot of chemistry. I get this feeling this could be a rather awkward pair to watch interact.  On top of that, I’ve been hearing murmurings that Ron has been showing up considerably late for practice, and has only wanted to practice for an hour or so at a time. A lack of commitment this early in the season? Sounds like a harbinger of doom to me.  I really want Peta to stick around, and I’m hoping Ron proves me wrong…but I’m just not optimistic. Read more..

September 14, 2011 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? Part XIII – The Chelsie Appreciation Edition

Well she may not be on the show this season, but “out of sight” is certainly not “out of mind” for us here at PureDWTS! What better time to show Chelsie she’s loved than now? :-)

I must confess, due to my own pessimistic tendencies, this was originally supposed to be the Anna Apprecation Edition, because I was so certain she wouldn’t be back this season.  But thankfully, she is, and now I have inspiration to create subsequent editions of WWIB featuring all of the female pros – eventually. ;-) Finding costume dittos is hard sometimes, even for someone with a freakishly near-photographic memory like mine…

Battle of the peach jeweled ballgown: Brooke’s Viennese waltz with Derek in season 7 vs. Chelsie’s pro dance with Dmitry to Jewel in season 8

Heidi: I think the look worked on Brooke simply so that the dress didn’t detract from the emotion of the dance, which was a Viennese Waltz to Daughters, by John Mayer.  It’s kind of plain on her, otherwise. I prefer it on Chelsie, and I like her softer hairstyle with this dress. Of course, it could just be the lighting. :-)

Courtney: I noticed several patterns with Chelsie’s costume choices while compiling this post.  The first is that she has an affinity for doing very lifty, contemporary choreo while wearing shortened ballgowns.  You can’t see in this picture, but this dress has actually been shortened substantially – check it out on the Randall website. May not be of any consequence to you guys, but I do find it kind of interesting how the costume department, when pressed for time & unable to create new costumes, just takes what they have on hand & changes it to work for them – very resourceful.  Anywho! I always thought the dress was very pretty on Brooke, but I’m not sure it’s a color she would pick for herself – seems too demure, and better suited to someone more wholesome and youthful, like Chelsie. And I’m not wild about Brooke’s hair – looks too…plastered down? Idk.

The winner: Chelsie, for better coloring…or maybe lighting.

Battle of the black, fringed, jewel-trimmed Latin dress: Chelsie in the season 11 finale opening dance vs. Anna’s opening credits shoot with Sugar Ray in season 12

Courtney: Another pattern I noticed with Chelsie: she is so freaking hard to get a decent screen cap of!!!!! Seriously – she never stops moving, and her technique is so good that she moves with such a range of motion that she’s seldom in a position where she’s facing the camera, in a neutral position.  I got so many bad screenshots of her moving her body in crazy ways that made it impossible to see her costume well.  She also seems fond of black-fringed costumes – this one is pretty similar to the one she wore for her cha-cha with Romeo, and she wore gloves for both.  In truth – I’m not wild about this version of the black-fringed costume.  Since there’s very little sparkle, it just seems to look a little blah on both ladies for me.  At least with the Romeo version, there was quite a bit of sparkle to give the costume some depth.  I prefer colored versions of this particular style, such as the hot pink & multicolored versions featured in WWIB Part XI.

Heidi: I don’t care for the long black gloves with the short, fringed latin dresses – I don’t get that wardrobe choice at all. Other than that, there isn’t much to say about it really – it’s hard to see but I really prefer the dress on Anna – and again, it could just be the background and the lighting influencing me. I’m so easy. :-)

The winner: Anna by a hair…with an assist from the background & lighting :-)

Battle of the sheer, white, feather-trimmed ballgown: Cheryl’s Viennese waltz with Chad in season 10 vs. Chelsie’s dance with Mark in the “America’s Favorite Dancers” show

Heidi: They all have their “tics” don’t they?? :-) Mark’s is high water pants and polka dots, Cheryl’s is the sheer ballgown skirt.  I much prefer Cheryl’s tic in this case, although I do find it a rather strange choice. As for who wore it better?? Well, I think Chelsie is wearing it like it’s a dress made for CHERYL, if that makes sense. It doesn’t really seem like it belongs on her, and I also prefer Cheryl’s hairstyle, as it is fancy, fancy, fancy…just like the dress.

Courtney: Ahhh yes – another representative of Cheryl’s ongoing infatuation with sheer-skirted ballgowns :-) This one is odd for me: I think the bodice is gorgeous, with all of the beading & delicate details, but the skirt…looks totally silly to me. Like they let a class of preschoolers decorate it with a bunch of feathers & pom-poms.  All that’s missing is the uncooked macaroni and you’ve got yourself a craft project! I don’t know…they both look good from the waist up, and bizarre from the waist down.  I’m apathetic.

The winner: Cheryl loves her some sheer skirts…and rocks them well.

Battle of the red, jeweled midriff Latin costume: Chelsie in the pro dance with the Mwano family in season 11 vs. Edyta’s salsa relay with Ashley in season 9

Courtney: Chelsie costuming pattern #3: she will never show her stomach completely.  Seriously…find me an example of her midriff being completely exposed and I will gladly admit I’m wrong.  She’ll wear cut-out dresses, or ones that show a teeny-tiny bit of belly, but then you’ve got 2-piece costumes like this where they slap a piece of mesh down the front.  This costume definitely had to go through some un-Edytafication before Chelsie would wear it…the mesh, the extra layer of fabric on the skirt to cover the sides, the increased chest coverage.  Normally I would give this one to Edyta, no contest, but the open sides of the skirt look weird to me.  Gotta go with Chelsie this time.

Heidi: Edyta, by a mile.  It was originally designed for her and by adding back material it just makes an already unfortunate dress worse. :-)  When you add the mesh on the front it make the whole dress look heavy, what with the double patterned belts around the hips and under the bra line.  I think Edyta is just playing the part here better than Chelsie is – and damn that woman has a body.  :-)

The winner: Edyta, for playing the part.

Battle of the lavender, jewel-trimmed, one-shoulder ballgown: Kym’s Viennese waltz with Donny in season 9 vs. Chelsie’s Viennese waltz with Jake in the season 10 finale

Heidi: I think Chelsie is a bit too short for this dress – maybe if it was straight to the floor instead of layered it would work better for me. Both women look very pretty, but I’m gonna have to go with Kym, I believe.

Courtney: This is another thing I hate about screen-capping – it always makes colors look too warm.  The dress is closer to the color on the left than the color on the right – but it’s a pretty color, regardless.  I think it’s a good example of the “less is more” concept of costuming – very simple silhouette, flattering color, minimal trim.  Lovely :-) Looks great on both ladies, but I have to give this one to Kym – love her romantic wavy hair.  Looks like Chelsie may have been the victim of the dreaded quick-change, which usually necessitates un-fussy, generically-styled hair to fit multiple costumes.

The winner: She of the Awesome Boobage dominates once again.

Battle of the gold, fringed, halter-top Latin dress: Chelsie in the season 8 intros vs. Ashly in the 150th episode pro dance to “Hard to Handle” in season 6

Heidi: Hmmm….tough call. Both ladies wear this dress well. It compliments both Chelsie’s sunny, California girl look, and Ashly’s darker hair and complexion.  This one is a tough call!!  I think I’m leaning toward Chelsie, but I have to idea why. :-)

Courtney: Maybe because we have a hard time believing a wholesome Mormon mommy like Ashly would pick out an outfit like this for herself? ;-) I dunno, at least that’s what I think – both ladies are on the wholesome side, but Chelsie is able to pull off sexier, flashier outfits a bit better, IMO.  The impression I get from Ashly in this dress is that “I had to wear a gold dress to match the other dancers, so I bit the bullet and picked out the most conservative one I could.” Plus I love the way a gold outfit looks paired with blonde hair :-)

The winner: Chelsie, for looking more comfortable being sexy.

Battle of the pale blue, jeweled high-neck ballgown: Nicole’s waltz with Derek in season 10 vs. Chelsie’s pro dance with Dmitry to Goo Goo Dolls in season 11

Courtney: I had completely forgotten about this one – and now that I’m looking at it, I’m realizing that it is really a beautiful dress. Simple silhouette with delicate details.  Again, looks great on both ladies, but I’m gonna go with Nicole on this one – I think this dress is better balanced as a long dress, and the high neck looks a bit odd on Chelsie.

Heidi: I think the high collar on this dress rather begs for an upswept, formal hairstyle. It draws the eye to a nice neck and you don’t want your hair ruining the effect. So, I have to go with Nicole also. The bodice of the dress with the shorter length (and lack of shoes) on Chelsie just doesn’t look quite right.

The winner:  Nicole, by a length…of dress.

August 29, 2011 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 Search Engine Round-Up – Week of June 24, 2011

 Sorry this is kinda late, kids – I’ve been caught up with end-of-quarter stuff at work, and have been spending more time at the office than I have at home, I’m afraid.  But things ought to let up a bit after next week, so look forward to some more fun posts headed your way ;-) I gotta admit – it’s getting harder and harder to write this each week, because we’re currently in the summer doldrums between seasons where we’re not getting as many hits as we do when the show is in-season…and fewer hits usually means fewer unique terms getting searched.  So just a warning – this may become a bi-weekly feature in the future, if I can’t get enough good material for it. 

Season 12 ratings

A quick search of “ratings” in the search bar will pull up all of the ratings posts, but here’s a link to the last one of the season.  Vogue posts them each week during the season, just so we can see how DWTS is stacking up against all the other shows.  They’re almost always in the top 5, but it is kinda cool to see how certain events on the show (say, “American Night” or the winner-take-all cha-cha) can affect the ratings for a particular week. 

Kyle Petty recent photos

Erm, I’d say his website would probably be the best source for that.  I was stumped as to how some of you ended up here looking for pictures of Kyle, until I did a search and realized Shawn Johnson rode along with Kyle for a few laps at the Coca-Cola 600 back in May of ’09 after winning DWTS.  I wouldn’t mind Kyle doing the show – we haven’t had anyone from the racing world since Helio, and Kyle would be the first Nascar representative to do the show.  What do you guys think?

What were Maks & Cheryl paid for dancing at the Southwest Airlines 40th Anniversary party?

A bajillion, fafillion, sho0-bad-ooh-wopillion dollars. *pinky to corner of mouth like Dr. Evil* Honestly, I don’t know…none of us know, with the exception of Maks, Cheryl, the folks at Southwest accounts payable, and the IRS. I’m sure it was a pretty penny…most well-known ballroom pros can command several grand for private exhibition performance.  DWTS pros can probably command even more.  I’m guessing at least $15K each. 

So You Think You Can Dance songs list 2011

Head on over to Pure SYTYCD for that…if you are still watching the show after the sham that was Iveta’s elimination the other night. It’s safe to say I’m pretty salty about it – it’s only week 2 and already the sole ballroom dancer this season is gone, along with the only true tapper.  I know a lot of us were talking about it on Twitter, and the topic came up of Iveta doing DWTS.  While I love Iveta, I don’t wanna see it happen – she’s just so damn good, and I almost feel like doing the show would be a waste of her talent.  Then again, maybe her talent would be better appreciated on DWTS than it was on SYTYCD.  I’m beginning to think they’re intimidated by ballroom dancers over there…

Mark Ballas gay

Hehe.  *shaking head* Sorry, couldn’t resist that one.  I’m guessing this musing sprung from the interview Mark did where he said he wouldn’t mind having a same-sex partnership, and the subsequent discussion we had about the implications of said statement.  If he is indeed gay, he’s doing a pretty damn good job of concealing it, considering the bevy of babes he’s been linked to since starting DWTS.  There was Sabrina…and Joanna Pacitti…and I think one of the Pussycat Dolls…and then there was Jeanine…and the Bristol rumors…and the Chelsie rumors…and then the other other Chelsea…which brings us to Pia, the current girl du jour.  If he is gay, he’s got a whole wardrobe of beards to chose from :-) Honestly, if nothing else, I think Mark’s stance on same-sex ballroom says less about his sexual orientation and more about his need for attention. You know that box on facebook that says “interested in” and you choose “men”, “women” or “both”? They’d need to add one for Mark – “attention of any sort”. :-D

Back in town jive song

I think you’re referring to “The Boys are Back in Town” by Thin Lizzy, the song that Mike & Lacey jived to. 

Bristol Palin book

I’d personally rather use it as a doorstop than summer reading material, but there’s a few excerpts from it in a post Vogue did earlier this week.  Overall, it just sounds like a bitter, sensationalized attempt to prolong her 15 minutes of fame a bit more – she takes some cheap shots at her fellow contestants and her baby daddy, and seems hellbent on reminding us about the “hefty check” she got for doing DWTS.  I don’t think I’ve ever heard another celeb talk about the money they made on DWTS as much as Bristol.  And Bristol, honey, no matter how easy or irresistable it might be – don’t Hassle the Hoff.  You may just get yourself labeled persona non grata in Germany…and what would that do for your political aspirations? Tsk, tsk.

Derek Hough little toe

*facepalm* No comment…

HEY! If you haven’t voted in the End-of-Season Awards yet, do so quickly – voting ends soon!!!

June 25, 2011 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!

Dancing with the Stars – Who Wore it Better? Part IX

With all of the hubbub surrounding the closely-approaching (and much-anticipated!) premiere of season 11, we here at Pure DWTS have gotten a little burnt out from all the coverage…maybe some of you have, too.  So what better way to let off some steam and relax than to take a look at some more costume dittoes from previous seasons? Just a little something to pass the time while we wait with baited breath for the new season to start…and for more costumes to get reused ;-) Enjoy! Read more..

September 19, 2010 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 – Emmy Nominations 2010!!

Dancing with the Stars leads the “reality” show nominations with 9. From Reality TV World:

Reality TV receives 54 Emmy Awards noms, ‘Dancing’ leads again

Leading the 2009-2010 reality TV Emmy Awards nomination field for the fourth consecutive year is ABC’s Dancing with the Stars, which received nine nominations from the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences — one fewer than the reality record-setting 10 nominations it received last year.

CBS’ The Amazing Race was next with seven nominations — including one in the Outstanding Reality Competition category it has won every year since the Academy created it seven years ago. Just like each of the last three years, The Amazing Race will compete against American Idol, Dancing with the Stars, Project Runway, and Top Chef for the award

Keoghan will compete against American Idol host Ryan Seacrest, Dancing with the Stars host Tom Bergeron, Project Runway host Heidi Klum, and Survivor host Jeff Probst in the category, which Probst has won both times it has been awarded since its 2008 creation.

The Amazing Race also received nods for cinematography, directing, picture editing, sound editing, and sound mixing while Dancing with the Stars also got nominations for hairstyling, lighting, makeup, sound mixing, and technical direction as well as a pair of choreography nods in which Derek Hough was nominated both individually and with Chelsie Hightower.

Derek was nominated with Chelsie for their acoustic Paso Doble in Season 10, and he was nominated individually for his futuristic Paso Doble with Joanna/Quickstep to ‘Anything Goes’ with Nicole. I have to read the rules, but I think the last two dances were a combined nomination – I guess you can submit up to 3. Mya Michaels, for example, has three dances listed under her nomination, but it appears to be only ONE nomination, not three. If I understand what I have read about the rules prior to the nominations being announced, you only can have two nominations if they are from different shows OR if one is part of a team, which is why Derek is nominated twice. Chelsie submitted their Paso as a team, then Derek submitted the Futuristic Paso and the Quickstep – hence, two nominations.

You can read all about the Emmys and see the full list of nominations at Emmy.com.

July 8, 2010 I Written By

I'm a nerd and proud of it. Two degrees in geology also means I love BEER. :-) I'm also a Derek lover - proud of that too. So don't scream at those of us on this site and call us a bunch of "biased Derek-lovers" - it's just ME. :-) It may sound like I hate DWTS at times, but really, I'm just a snarky nitpicker from way back. And I'm cynical and jaded too. But I do love DWTS. :-)

Dancing with the Stars – Who Wore it Better??

Look, Courtney and I DID find something to snark on. :-) Not really, we just decided that it was time to put some of the wardrobe recyclers (or victims thereof) head to head to see if it’s always such a good idea. The answer is….no, not always. :-) On with the show…

Battle of the black & white paso dress: Chelsie’s pro paso with Derek this season vs. Cheryl’s paso with Gilles in season 8

Courtney: Hands down, Chelsie rocked this one better. She was working the skirt with every move, and I think the cut-out back really showed off her arm lines. As for Cheryl – I thought it looked too bulky on her frame and she didn’t really utilize the skirt like Chelsie did…almost seems like she was weighed down by it.
Heidi: Yeah, I don’t know why it didn’t work on Cheryl. Maybe it was the hair pulled up that put too much weight on the dress. She has a great body, it just didn’t work. Isn’t that the dance where Gilles went shirtless? That could be it too – too much contrast between the two of them.
Courtney: Yep, Gilles was indeed shirtless. With the high-waisted black dance pants and some sort of necklace. Mmmmm!
Heidi: Hold up a sec!! Seeing the pictures side by side – Chelsie had the whole front of the skirt cut out!! That removed a ton of bulk and allowed her to work the skirt better. Cheryl would have benefitted tremendously from that same cut out.
The winner: Chelsie, for workin’ that skirt for all it’s worth!

Battle of the white 2-piece Latin dress: Nicole’s pre-season photo shoot vs. Natalie’s bolero with Alec in season 9

Courtney: I’m gonna go with Nicole on this one, for the simple fact that Natalie was just so meek sometimes that a lot of her costumes seemed to overwhelm her. I think it suits Nicole’s sexy, confident attitude. Both have great bodies, but Nicole’s got the vibe to go with it – along with some killer curves to fill it out a bit better than Natalie, who had more of an athletic build.
Heidi: Yeah, I’m with ya. You have to have serious attitude and confidence to pull that look off and Natalie seemed a bit afraid of it. Plus, she had all the Rumba crap attached to it that got lost when Nicole wore it – lots less material on Nicole, if you look at them side by side.
The winner: Nicole, for the ‘tude, confidence, and dangerous curves!

Battle of the black, edgy, fringy 2-piece dress: Anna’s pre-season photo shoot w/Evan (as well as the week 2 pro dance) vs. Joanna’s jive with Derek in season 9

Heidi: Joanna had a combination of attitude, bad ass hair, and Derek as a partner, that made her pull off that outfit better. Even the picture of Derek and Joanna shows why I think she pulls it off better.
Courtney: I think Joanna was slightly more believable in this one – the hair & attitude really pulled the whole outfit together. It also seems a little bit loose on Anna – another small frame kinda overshadowed by the costume. And I just don’t see her as a rock chick.
The winner: Joanna, for her rocker attitude that matched that of her partner

Battle of the black & silver fringed Latin dress: Pam’s pre-season photo shoot with Damian vs. Cheryl’s pro dance in week 2 vs. Mya’s jive with Dmitry in season 9

Heidi: I thought Cheryl rocked this dress, but it was more the dance than the dress itself. She killed in that dance. I’m going with her and I confess it’s because she was the standout female in that dance – the still photo doesn’t do it justice.
Courtney: I say Mya, but just by a hair over Pam. I think Cheryl has to be really careful with very heavy trimmings on dresses – like the ruffles on the paso dress, I think this made her look heavier than she really is. The dress suits Pam’s smoldering attitude perfectly, but it doesn’t quite look as impressive sitting still on her as it does moving with Mya as she’s flicking and jumping in the jive – look at how it stands out. Plus it seemed to fit the flapper theme of their jive well.
The winner: For dancing, Cheryl. The actual dress? Mya by a hair.

Battle of the silver-fringed Latin dress: Shannon’s pre-season photo shoot with Mark vs. Edyta’s pro dance in week 2 vs. Kym’s cha-cha with Donny in season 9

Courtney: I feel bad for anyone who has had to wear the same costume as Edyta – with a body like hers, not many women stand a chance. She looks fantastic in this one, especially with those black boots she was rockin’. Shannon seems a little overwhelmed by it, and I don’t think it’s the best color on Kym – seems to wash her out a bit.
Heidi: Do you even need to ask? Edyta, of course.
The winner: Edyta, by a killer body

Battle of the white & flesh-toned Latin dress: Kate’s pre-season photo shoot with Tony vs. Joanna’s rumba with Derek in season 9

Heidi: Well, Joanna clearly has a better body, but I didn’t like this dress on her. Actually – it wasn’t the dress. You can’t underestimate how much how you wear your hair will impact the overall effect. If Joanna had had softer, romantic hair for this dress, she would win it. Hair is important!
Courtney: As much as it may pain me…I’m actually gonna go with Kate on this one. I always thought it looked way too conservative and matronly on Joanna – both qualities which make the dress more appropriate for Kate. In any other (skimpier) dress, Joanna would have had it for sure – I still wonder why, of all weeks, they chose rumba week to cover her up…and give her such old-fashioned hair. Crazy wardrobe & hair people!
Heidi: You know, the pros are generally in charge of the costuming, but when they recycle so blatantly, I wonder how much input they actually have? Derek usually does so well…then again, I wondered what the hell they were doing to Joanna hair and makeup-wise much of the season. She had some BAD makeup. Wonder if it was Joanna messing about.
The winner: Kate. By a (head full of) hair. :-)

Battle of the denim & fringe 2-piece cowboy outfit: Edyta’s pro dance to Reba in week 3 vs. Chelsie’s country two-step with Louie in season 9

Courtney: This has got to be the most adorable outfit I have seen all season – it’s cute while at the same time being sexy, and the fringe moves so well in two-step spins. While I think they both look fantastic in it, I think it’s a little better suited to Chelsie…she seems like a country girl. I just have a hard time imagining a Polish bombshell with an accent as heavy as a fried pierogi as a cowgirl!
Heidi: Well, I think Chelsie pulls off “cowgirl” better than Edyta by a mile. Edyta is too sultry for the cowgirl thing, whereas it fits Chelsie to a T. But damn, look at Edyta’s body! And you see the reason why Edyta is not a cowgirl – she took at least 4 inches off an already short skirt. On the top AND the bottom. :-)
The winner: Chelsie, for being our favorite l’il cow-girl next door

July 7, 2010 I Written By

I'm a nerd and proud of it. Two degrees in geology also means I love BEER. :-) I'm also a Derek lover - proud of that too. So don't scream at those of us on this site and call us a bunch of "biased Derek-lovers" - it's just ME. :-) It may sound like I hate DWTS at times, but really, I'm just a snarky nitpicker from way back. And I'm cynical and jaded too. But I do love DWTS. :-)

Louie Vito Makes US Olympic Snowboard Halfpipe Team

Dancing with the Stars’ own Louie Vito just made the US Olympic Snowboard Halfpipe team. Congrats to Louie. Here’s a part of the news from his website:

Louie Vito has qualified for the US Olympic Snowboard Halfpipe Team on January 23rd in Park City, UT. Vito finished with 800 points on the season after having secured two 2nd place finishes at the Copper and Mammoth Grand Prix stops.

“When I get to Vancouver, I want it to be an experience and really take it all in”, said Vito of his Olympic opportunity. “You know, it’s a once in a lifetime chance and I want to do well and put down a good run, but I just really want to take it all in and enjoy it, and have fun.”

Too bad this Olympic fame wasn’t before Dancing with the Stars. Would have gotten him some more votes. I can’t wait to see him represent the US in the Olympics.

January 29, 2010 I Written By

Better known as Charlie.

Dancing with the Stars Judges – Strictly Best Friends

So, I found this article in the Mirror Online, which is a UK paper (Tabloid?), and had to share it. As most of you know, Len and Bruno also judge Strictly Come Dancing which is the British version of Dancing with the Stars. SCD is the original version of DWTS and as you saw from the pictures I posted that Derek took last week when he visited the set, they mirror each other fairly closely (although we have better pros :-) ). Anyway, Len and Bruno are very good friends and extremely hilarious – you have to read the entire article, it’s a scream. If you never do anything other than watch DWTS on TV and visit this site from time to time, you would never know that Len was so flippin’ hilarious. You already know about Bruno, I’m sure. Some excerpts are below. :-)

Strictly best friends
By Beth Neil 12/12/2009

ODD COUPLE REVEAL WHY THEY’RE A PERFECT MATCH

One is a fired-up Italian. The other is a twinkly-eyed Englishman.

They couldn’t be more different, but Strictly Come Dancing’s Len Goodman, 65, and Bruno Tonioli, 54, are the best of pals.

Q What is your first memory of the other?

Len: Bruno wasn’t the gregarious character we know now. He didn’t burst forth until we started doing the American show where there’s a lot more shouting and screaming.

Bruno: I thought he was very posh and distinguished – then he opened his mouth. It didn’t take long for us to start laughing our heads off because we’ve got the same wicked sense of humour. We had an instant understanding.

Q What is your best memory of a night out together?

Len: When we’re over in the States for 11 weeks during the spring we’ll go to the pictures together or out for a pizza and we always have a great time.

Bruno: There was one where he got absolutely paralytic. We were in America and they started serving cocktails. Len was bouncing off the walls. It was so hysterical I nearly p***** myself.

Q Who’s the best drinker?

Len: Neither of us. The cheapest dates in the world, me and Bruno.We’re half-cut when we’re sober so it doesn’t take much to tip us over the edge.

Bruno: We’re both as bad as each other.

Q Which of you is the best-looking?

Len: I’m a natural beauty, but Bruno relies on cosmetics to bring him up to my standards. He’s a gym fanatic and for his age he’s got a good, firm body. But he loves to show it off. Any excuse to whip his T-shirt up and display his pectorals. When we’re in LA he sits out in his under shorts with his nuts and bolts exploding out of his blimmin’ Y-fronts. It’s not a pleasant sight.

Bruno: Well me, of course. I’m younger and sexier. Len needs to go to the gym because he’s putting on a bit of a belly. I’m going to make him come to the gym with me every day when we go back to America. He’s going to look like Schwarzenegger.

December 12, 2009 I Written By

I'm a nerd and proud of it. Two degrees in geology also means I love BEER. :-) I'm also a Derek lover - proud of that too. So don't scream at those of us on this site and call us a bunch of "biased Derek-lovers" - it's just ME. :-) It may sound like I hate DWTS at times, but really, I'm just a snarky nitpicker from way back. And I'm cynical and jaded too. But I do love DWTS. :-)