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DWTS Season 14 Stats Class: Week 1 Predicted Scores

So here we are, the first week of the season and rumor has it that the celebs are going to be dancing either the gracefully upbeat Foxtrot or the fun and flirty Cha-Cha. So let’s get cooking and see what their scores could be.

What I’m going to do this season is different from previous seasons. I will post up the average score of the dance in a particular group/category and then average all three scores completely and round up or down based on intangibles and there you have the final predicted scores. Keep in mind that popularity, previous dance experience, etc are not taken into account… that is simply too many variables for me to attempt to follow for any season.

GAVIN DEGRAW
Dance: Foxtrot
Average Scores:
- Age: 19.435
- Occupation: 20.000
- Professional Partner: 21.000
Predicted Score: 20
Comments: With most of his scores being “middle of the road” the only thing going for him is his partner Karina. Her scores on the Foxtrot in the first third of the season on average is relatively higher than most pros. Should he be part of the middle of the pack… he may be alright for the week (considering the rabid fan base I’ve noticed thus far) but if he doesn’t shine either this week or next week, he could be in trouble for the casual viewer.

DONALD DRIVER
Dance: ChaCha
Average Scores:
- Age: 19.667
- Occupation: 19.143
- Professional Partner: 14.000
Predicted Score: 18
Comments: It’s always hard to tell how a celeb would do when they are paired with a relatively new pro. NFL players typically do better in the Foxtrot out of the gate as opposed to the ChaCha, so with a couple of strikes against him… NFL players could surprise the audience by sheer weight of their personality, he might be lucky here. However, when looking at the scores of NFL players in their 30s, they tend to hit above average (21.000)… so I almost feel that this score is rather low overall. …Read more

March 19, 2012 I Written By

My life can be summed up in the following two quotes: 1) "I am married to engineering and am its faithful wife by day, but at night my wanderlust takes hold and the arts becomes my jealous paramour." and... 2) "Engineering is my safety net. Writing is my passion. Acting is my escape when the other two become too much." So where does dancing fit in? Pretty much anywhere at this point... =)

DWTS13 Chaz Bono On His Dancing Journey So Far, His Future Plans, & More (Video)

Jay Leno interviewed Chaz last night on the Tonight Show. He starts out by calling him the “Chazmanian Devil”. They review Chaz’s journey so far on Dancing With The Stars. Jay tries to point out that Chaz had a bad diet before starting the show and Chaz says it’s not true. He had the bad diet before getting clean and sober 7 years ago. Chaz also talks of his previous dance experience. He took tap and ballet when he was little and took performing arts in high school (oh no, here comes the ringer debate again 8O ;) ). They talk of the transgender debate as well and how Chaz let’s the criticism roll off his back. Chaz discusses how he’d like to maybe act or even be a late night TV host after his gig on Dancing With The Stars is up (good idea. I’d love to see that happen too!). All this and more below.

TV Guide has a new interview up with Chaz today as well. He talks of how the “injury” talk has been blown out of proportion (I agree. I wish interviewers would stop going on and asking him about it as if Chaz is complaining when he’s not. He wouldn’t even talk of it if they didn’t ask). He also discusses the great cast and the fun he’s having. Below is a take of what it felt like being in the bottom two. He also comments how the Rumba is easier and rehearsals are going well. More at the link!

What was going through your mind when you were called safe and realized you weren’t in the actual bottom two?
Bono: I was just really happy. Both of us didn’t want to stop participating in this, so Lacey and I were just incredibly relieved. You hope that [your fans can save you]. Also, we were one point off three or four other couples, so it wasn’t like we were way below. We knew we definitely had a chance to go home, but hoped we wouldn’t. We were really thrilled the fans got us through.

You scored a 17 two weeks in a row. What are you working on to bump up that up next week?
Bono: Nothing in particular. We just want to do the best job we can. Every dance has its own technique and I think each of us contestants has our own strengths and weaknesses. [The rumba] will definitely be easier for me, physically, than the quickstep. It’s slower and there’s no skipping, and rehearsals are going well.

September 30, 2011 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.

DWTS11 Preliminary Power Rankings, Part II

So last week, I formulated who wouldn’t last past the midpoint of the competition in part I of my season 11 preliminary power ranking.  Today, I’ll reveal my top half – and who I think is going to walk away with that mirrorball trophy.  Enjoy & dicuss!

6.) Florence Henderson & Corky Ballas – I think these two could be interchangeable with Michael & Chelsie, depending on how memorable Florence can be.  No doubt Florence will likely be the better dancer – she’s had legit experience, plus the footage I’ve seen of her practicing so far looks reeeeaaally good.  She seems like a very focused, hard worker.  She’s also got the boon of being the oldest cast member, which seems to bring its own voting fanbase with it.  The one problem I think Flo might have is the comparisons she’s likely gonna get to Cloris, since that’s been Corky’s only other partner – and she and Cloris are NOTHING alike, besides their older age.  While part of Cloris’ appeal was her outrageous behavior, it’s something we’re not going to see out of Flo…like I’ve mentioned before, Flo is very demure and classy, and not the type to throw out off-color comments and innuendo.  As for Corky and his fanbase…that’s a little harder to predict.  He’s only been on the show once before, and it seemed like it was his partner’s outrageous behavior that kept them around so long.  I’m not sure if Mark’s (or Derek’s, for that matter) fans are gonna throw any votes his direction, or if he has enough of a fanbase of his own to really make a difference.  Regardless, I’m actually kind of excited for these two – it will be nice to see what a dynamite choreographer like Corky can really do with a partner that’s willing to work. 

5.) Kurt Warner & Anna Trebunskaya – Now Kurt could be the worst dancer in the competition this season, and I still don’t think he’d get sent home any sooner than week 6 or 7, just due to being a former NFL player (the worst any of them have done is 7th place).  On top of that, he’s the first quarterback we’ve ever had on the show, and the QB’s are typically the most well-known players on each team. But I think Kurt could actually be pretty good, if his work ethic during dance practice is anything like his work ethic on the football field.  And really – Kurt just seems like a genuinely good guy.  Comes from humble roots, evangelical Christian, family man, does a lot of charity work…I’m not sure there’s a more likeable guy in the competition.  He also seems to have a goofy side (see The Great Previous Dance Experience Debate, Part II), which always seems to balance nicely with a serious work ethic.  I think Anna has also beefed up her fanbase after having such a breakout season with Evan – people have warmed to her considerably, and she seems to have gotten a good deal more comfortable with her own choreography.  But while these two will likely be Mr. & Mrs. Congeniality this season, I don’t think Kurt necessarily has the dance chops (or the explosive personality) to make it to the semifinals.  

4.) David Hasselhoff & Kym Johnson – I’m saying this right now – I don’t think the Hoff is going to be a fantastic dancer.  Decent, maybe; but not great.  However, I do think he will be this season’s funny man, and that will take him farther than his dance skills will.  From the bit of media that I’ve seen so far with him in it, I’m having flashbacks of Donny in season 9 – the Hoff is definitely hamming it up.  Very chatty, cracking a lot of jokes, but seems enthusiastic…I do think he’ll make an honest effort, but I’m just not sure he’s got a ton of natural skill to pair it with.  But that’s ok, because if there’s one thing Kym is really good at, it’s taking an okay partner and giving them choreography that really lets them shine – I think that’s exactly what she did with Donny & Warren, and I’m sure that’s what she’ll do with David.  Plus Kym is quite possibly the most likeable female pro in the competition – mellow, sweet, and drop dead gorgeous.  I think they’ll look good together, and will likely be one of the couples out there that is truly enjoying themselves – it probably won’t trump some of the better-dancing couples, but I could see it taking them to the semifinal. 

3.) Jennifer Grey & Derek Hough – Looks like Heidi and I are in agreement on this one – Team Jenougher will probably make it to the finale, but just don’t quite have the juice to go all the way.  Like Heidi, I agree that Jennifer’s age and recent health issues will likely hinder this pair a bit; however, I do think she will be a sentimental fave with the voters, and they will come out to vote for her in big ways…even if she isn’t the greatest.  She does have a big advantage in having Derek; choreographically, I think he’s the strongest male pro and the one most likely to bring out the best in his partners.  He’s also got an uber-strong fanbase, and they’re smart about how they vote.  The only thing I can’t really predict is if there’s going to be any backlash from his win last season – I can’t decide if those that are still pissed about Nicole winning are going to refuse to vote for Derek now, even if they really do like what he’s doing with Jen.  Ditto for the same people that are clinging to the (flimsy) notion that Jennifer is a “professional dancer” and that DWTS is strictly for stars with “no dance experience” (keep dreaming) – are they gonna refuse to vote too, just on principle? By the same token, are they gonna refuse to vote for Brandy, Florence, & the Hoff too? I would like to think that in a season like this, with a fairly level playing field, that people wouldn’t try to concoct conspiracy theories like that – but there’s always some renegades.  That whole mess aside, I do think these two will be one of the stronger couples this season…but I’m not sure they’re going to have enough momentum to win. 

2.) Brandy & Maksim Chmerkovskiy – I’m sure there will be shock, awe, and outrage over this one, but when it comes down to it I just don’t think Brandy is going to be the stereotypical “pop-star ringer” that everyone is saying she is.  As we proved with the previous dance experience post, Brandy’s career has not been nearly as dance-heavy as, say, Nicole, Sabrina, or even Mel B’s.  And unlike Nicole & Sabrina, who were still in the high point of their careers when they did the show, Brandy’s been out of the spotlight for a little while now…aside from an album she released last year that flopped, and the reality show she has with her family on VH1 (which I’m not sure paints her in the best light), she hasn’t really been up to anything “big” in over 10 years.  I’m not sure how much of her original fanbase is still invested enough to come out and vote for her, which will likely cause her to rely heavily on pulling people in with great dancing.  And from what I’ve seen from the media so far – Brandy seems like a focused, hard worker, but doesn’t seem to be a natural when it comes to ballroom.  However, I do think she has an advantage in having Maks, who does have a large fanbase, and is a good choreographer – when he isn’t pissing off the judges or throwing fits (then again, like Heidi, I blame a lot of his less savory behavior last season on Erin, who seemed to bring out the worst in him, for whatever reason).  However, it is encouraging to see Maks & Brandy practicing and no tantrums being thrown by either party – the energy between them seems much more synergistic than it was between him and some of his other partners.  I daresay this will likely result in some really good, memorable routines.  However, when it comes down to it, I think they’re no match for… 

1.) Rick Fox & Cheryl Burke – Ok, pick your jaw up off the floor, and let me explain why I think these two could be the couple to beat this season.  First off, athletes generally do well (duh) – and pretty male athletes tend to do REALLY well (think Jason Taylor, Apolo Ohno, Helio Castroneves).  And when a pretty athlete teams up with a pretty female pro – watch out.  I have already said multiple times that I think these two are going to be this season’s most handsome couple.  Plus Cheryl is statistically the strongest female pro on the show – two wins, one 2nd place finish, one 3rd place finish, and 2 trips to the semi finals in her 9 seasons on the show – and she’s also one of the toughest, which Rick has said works well for him.  I also have a sneaking suspicion that Rick is not completely inept in the rhythm department – ex-wifey Vanessa Williams was a fantastic dancer, and I can’t imagine that a little bit of know-how didn’t rub off on him during their 5-year marriage.  Rick also has the boon of being a star not only from his basketball career, but also his acting career – he’s appeared on quite a few TV shows.  Both he and Cheryl seem to have pretty good-sized fanbases on their own, too, which gives them a bit of an edge over couples where the celeb isn’t as popular as the pro, and vice-versa.  Seems like this couple has a pretty good hand to play…but they do seem to be keeping their poker face up.  Not a whole lot of media leakage on these two, which makes me think that they’re really trying to play up the whole surprise factor when Rick turns out to be pretty damn good.  Cheryl seemed to do the same thing with Gilles, and look how he panned out.  But I daresay it will be interesting to see what these two have up their sleeves ;-)

So there you have it – I’ve laid out my predictions for this season’s couples, without any of them having actually set foot on the floor.  Definitely hoping for some surprises this season, since this is the most level the playing field has been in quite some time.  But what do you guys think? Am I onto something? Am I full of crap? SPEAK UP! :-D

September 15, 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!

Derek Hough on “Ringers”

Very interesting interview with Derek – don’t let the title mislead you, he actually doesn’t back away AT ALL from Nicole’s previous dance experience.  In fact, I think even Derek detractors will have a tough time finding fault with what he has to say. But maybe I’m overly optimistic on that front. :-)  Anyway, from the Seattle Post – TV Guide, a few excerpts:

TVGuide.com: Anna Trebunskaya says you’ve been busting in on her rehearsals with Evan Lysacek. Are you scoping out the competition?

Derek Hough: Totally! We’re constantly walking in, like, “So what’s going on, guys?” [Laughs] It’s funny because Nicole does this certain move in our Viennese waltz that kind of looks like ice skating, like gliding, so every time she does it, she goes, “It’s the Lysacek!” Everyone’s having a good time. She gets along with everybody and she’s enjoying herself. Nicole’s a really hard worker, but we’ve been playing hard as well too. She’s a huge goofball. I thought I was crazy and goofy, but she’s definitely outmatched me.

TVGuide.com: There seems to be at least one person every season with a performing or dance background that people label a “ringer.” Some say it’s Nicole this season. Does that bother you?
Hough:
For me, I don’t think it’s Nicole. I think it could be Evan. He performs choreography on ice. He’s like Baryshnikov on ice! Nicole is like, “Wait a minute. I’m a singer who just happens to do a few chest bumps and a few head rolls.” That’s what she compares her dancing to. But what’s so great about this season is that I don’t think there is a definite ringer. You’ve got lots of people who can be very good. Evan will be tough for so many different reasons. Chad [Ochocinco]‘s got a great personality. We’ve learned in the past that people who’ve danced before don’t necessarily do well, let alone win. The show is so much more than just dancing. It’s about personality, it’s about story, it’s about charisma. Just look at Ty Murray.

TVGuide.com: How much has Nicole’s dance background helped?
Hough:
I hate when people say, “No, it’s a totally different monster. It doesn’t help at all.” That’s ridiculous. Of course it helps! I think what helps the most is her musicality. But it is very true that this is hard. People make it look easy, but that’s what’s so hard about it — making it look easy. It’s definitely a struggle, but I think her dance experience has allowed us to up the ante as far as choreography.


TVGuide.com: Who are you excited to see dance?
Hough:
I think Pamela Anderson is going to bring something good. She’s with Damian [Whitewood], the new guy, who’s going to bring new energy. Erin Andrews and Maks [Chmerkovskiy] should be something as well. I can’t wait to see Buzz [Aldrin]. Buzz is a little party animal. I went out twice last week and he was at both parties. He was kicking it right until the end. … This guy is a party animal and he’s 80 years old! He’s awesome. When he practices, he wears this shirt with this guy walking on the moon, and I said, “Is that you?” He said, “Yeah, it is, actually.” “Oh, wow!” [Laughs] People say that he’s a moonwalker, and he doesn’t like that. “No, I walked on the moon. I’ve actually walked on it.” It’s pretty funny because it’s true! You’re like, “Right, sorry. Duh. You’re a legend.”

March 19, 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. :-)

DWTS Season 9 – Preliminary Power Rankings

Greetings all! I’m Courtney, and I’m super pumped that I’ll be doing this season’s power rankings.  Being that I’ve been an amateur ballroom dancer for the past 6 years, I tend to really get down to the “nitty gritty” of choreography and technique, but I’m also a sucker for an entertaining and likeable contestant, regardless of how good or bad they may have danced.  I’m definitely looking forward to see how things pan out this season (16 couples…wow!), and I look forward to seeing what you guys think as well :-)

Since we now know all of the celebs and all of their pro partners, I thought I would do a preliminary power ranking based solely on each celeb’s previous dance/athletic experience & overall likeability.  In addition, I have also taken into account their pro partner’s likeability and fan base, as the pro’s themselves have taken on an almost celeb status through the years, and many of them have almost as big a fan base as the celebs they teach (can you imagine how many teen voters tune into DWTS each week in the hopes that they might catch a glimpse of a bare-chested Mark or Derek?).  So without further ado, here they are…I’m curious to see what you guys think, so please, all feedback is appreciated!

1.) Mya & Dmitry Chaplin - Mya has, arguably, the most previous dance experience of any of this season’s celebs.  She had ballet & jazz training from the age of 2, and later picked up tap as well, and was good enough to land a spot performing with Savion Glover of the Dance Theater of Harlem (for those of you unfamiliar with him, he is to tap what Clint Eastwood is to Hollywood – a pretty big deal!).  She’s also fairly recognizable, as she’s a Grammy-winning recording artist and has had bit parts in a few movies (anyone remember her as Vern’s fiance in Shall We Dance?). And Mya is SEXY…I don’t see her as someone who would be timid on the dance floor. Dmitry also has a following of his own from his SYTYCD days, and now also has an Emmy nomination under his belt for the Argentine tango he choreographed for season 4 of SYTYCD.  For me, this is the couple to beat.

2.) Donny Osmond & Kym Johnson – Do I honestly think that Donny will outdance the 14 other couples in this competition? Absolutely not…but I think his fame alone (especially with female baby boomers) will make him a contender this season.  Granted, Donny has SOME dance experience from his years performing with The Osmonds, but I’m not sure it’s enough to outshine trained dancers like Debi or Aaron.  But think back to season 5, and the juggernaut that was Marie Osmond, who made it to the finals despite mediocre scores from the judges.  He also has an advantage in having Kym, who I find to be one of the more consistent & likeable pros on the show.  I don’t think these two have the “juice” to win the whole thing, but I definitely think they’ll be around for awhile.

3.) Debi Mazar & Maksim Chmerkovskiy - Little known fact: Debi began her career as a hip-hop B-girl in New York, and has appeared in 4 Madonna videos…so she is no stranger to dance.  She’s also appeared in quite a few movies, so she’s a fairly recognizable actress (another fun fact: She appeared in Beethoven’s 2nd with another season 9 celeb – Ashley Hamilton).  Debi is known for her roles as feisty, tough women, so that could be an advantage when it comes to aggressive dances like the paso doble & tango – however, it could also hurt her if she butts heads with her equally as feisty partner, Maks.  I see Maks as one of the more popular pros on the show (especially with the ladies), so I see this pair having some staying power.

4.) Mark Dacascos & Lacey Schwimmer – Ok, so maybe he isn’t a household name, but once people see him, the lightbulb comes on: “Ohhh, that Iron Chef guy!”.  You might also recognize him from martial arts films such as Cradle 2 The Grave, where he squared off with Jet Li. His expertise in martial arts could definitely be a strong advantage for him this season – I think he could be this season’s Gilles Marini, the lesser-known actor with a martial arts background that takes the competition by storm.  Did I mention he’s also pretty easy on the eyes? It’s never been a disadvantage in this competition (at least for the men) to be good-looking.  And he’s lucked into getting fan-fave Lacey as his partner, who I have found to have an almost cult-like following from both SYTYCD & the past two seasons of DWTS.  A hot combo, these two!

5.) Aaron Carter & Karina Smirnoff - About 11 years ago, during my awkward teenage years, I attended a Backstreet Boys concert where Aaron was the opening act.  I was amazed with the ease at which this kid was cartwheeling, handspringing, and flipping all over the stage…and he was only 10 at the time! Aaron’s got a background in gymnastics, as well as some hip-hop experience from his years as a pop act.  However, he also has a bit of a checkered past: troubles with substance abuse and the demise of several romantic relationships have made several tabloid covers, which may make him a bit less “likeable” to viewers.  But I could also see mom’s latching onto him as a sort of son-type figure, a la Cody Linley.  I think Karina is also one of the strongest female pros on the show, and has a knack for choreographing to showcase her partner’s strengths while hiding their weaknesses. These two could either be really good or really bad – I’m crossing my fingers it’s the former.

6.) Melissa Joan Hart & Mark Ballas – Could they have picked a more adorable, likeable gal to be on this season of DWTS? I find Melissa to be a prime example of a “girl next door” type – or rather the girl upstairs type, as she played on Clarissa Explains It All.  And she “bewitched” (pun intended) audiences for 7 seasons as a lovable teenager with magical powers on Sabrina the Teenage Witch.  I don’t know that she has any real dance experience, but, like Donny, I think she’ll be a contender based on star power alone.  And I think  reigning 2-time champ Mark has the chops (and the female following) to keep this pair going in the competition, regardless of the judge’s scores. These two also have an adorable moniker for their partnership – “Malarky”, which could help them to claim the spot as this season’s “cute” couple, much like Shawn & Mark last season.

7.) Joanna Krupa & Derek Hough – Models have generally not fared so well on the show.  And I’m afraid Joanna’s recent obscenity-laden tyrade against Terrell Owens on this summer’s reality show The Superstars could make her look a bit, er, “witchy” in the eyes of female viewers.  But the ladies love Derek Hough (ask Heidi!), and they want to keep him in the competition to watch him week after week.  Not only that, but I find Derek’s choreography to be very clever and entertaining (think last season’s “Jailhouse Rock” jive with Lil Kim), so this pair could get by on Derek’s skill & popularity alone.  They’re also both young & good-looking, which seems to be an advantage in romantic dances like the rumba & waltz.

8.) Kathy Ireland & Tony Dovolani – Echoing my sentiments above, models seem to really struggle on this show (remember first-round cast-offs Josie Maran & Paulina Porizkova?).  However, Kathy Ireland seems to be one of the world’s most recognizable supermodels, appearing in the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue 13 years in a row, as well as owning a clothing line and writing 5 books.  I think her level of fame could keep her around for a little while.  Tony is a fairly experienced pro on the show, too, so maybe their collective “fame” will help carry them through week after week.  They’re also well matched in stature (she’s 5’10″; he’s over 6′), which actually makes more of a difference (especially in the smooth dances, such as the waltz & foxtrot) than you might think!

9.) Ashley Hamilton & Edyta Sliwinska – I had to really rack my brain to think of a movie that Ashley had been in – and all I came up with was Beethoven’s 2nd (he was Nicholle Tom’s sleazy boyfriend).  I did, however, remember his reputation as a bit of a partier, and his infamous 5-month marriage to Shannon Doherty.  Oh, and he’s season 2 celeb George Hamilton’s son.  I daresay Ashley might have a bit more to prove on the show given his iffy recognizability (on many messages boards I encountered, people thought he was a girl!), but he’s got Edyta, the only pro to be on all 9 seasons of the show, and they both are attractive individuals.  If Ashley really works hard, I could see him moving up in the ranks.

10.) Natalie Coughlin & Alec Mazo – Olympic athletes seem to really thrive on the show (think Shawn Johnson & Apolo Ohno), so I think Natalie might have a lot to prove.  But she is an athlete, so she may be able to withstand the grueling pace of the show.  She has Alec, who, despite having choreography that the judges like, always seems to blend into the background for me.  I fear that this pair might get lost in the shuffle, and may get forgotten by America when it comes time to vote. 

11.) Michael Irvin & Anna Demidova - I’m a bit indecisive about this couple: on one hand, Michael is a former NFL Hall-of-Famer, and NFL players have generally done well on the show – however, he is also no stranger to controversy, having a few brushes with the law throughout the years.  I fear that viewers might not like that, and may not vote as a result, even if he is quite good.  But he does have Anna, who proved herself during last year’s pro competition and was voted by America to be part of this season’s cast, so she’s got a following…she also seems to know how to bring out the best in her partner, as evidenced by her tango with Maurice Greene last season.  I have my fingers crossed with this pair as well – I would really like to see more of Anna.

12.) Chuck Liddell & Anna Trebunskaya – Not gonna lie – Chuck scares me! He’s a very intimidating guy,but I guess that comes with the territory when you’re a mixed-martial arts champion.  So here’s my dilemma: the only precedents we have for professional “fighters” on the show are Evander Holyfield (the 2nd contestant voted out in season 1) and Floyd Mayweather (4th voted out in season 5) – and neither did exceedingly well.  I fear that Chuck may fall prey to the problem of being rather “heavy” on his feet – however, he is extremely strong (which helps with lifts & stunts), and is obviously no stranger to grueling training, so he may be able to push through and really improve week after week.  Anna has been out of the DWTS game since season 6 (due to the fact that she was one of the top ranked International Latin competitors in the country and was still competing as a pro - not an easy feat!), so she may not have quite as much of a following as some of the other pros…however, I think that at least some of Chucks MMA fans might tune in and vote for him, which could tip the scales in their favor.

13.) Louie Vito & Chelsie Hightower – Some of you are probably very shocked about my placement of this couple – let me explain.  I think these two may have a lot of work to do based solely on the fact that not many people outside of the extreme sports venue have heard of Louie Vito (to quote my mother, “Wasn’t he in The Godfather?”).  Looking back to previous seasons of DWTS, we can see that decent dancers are often voted out before their time simply because they don’t have the fan base to vote for them (I thought Ted McGinley in season 7 was great – but no one seemed to know who he was!) However, Louie is an athlete, so he is definitely not a stranger to getting physical, and Chelsie has some popularity from both her time on SYTYCD & last season of DWTS.  If these two hit the ground running the first week and keep up the good work, they could be around for awhile.

14.) Kelly Osbourne & Louis Van Amstel -  Oh Kelly…I sincerely hope your years as a foul-mouthed teen on The Osbournes and stint in rehab have not disgraced you in the eyes of the American public! While I adore Kelly’s quirky, edgy style and multiple tattoos, I don’t know that the rest of America will, and may not vote as a result.  However, Kelly has lost quite a bit of weight through diet and exercise in recent years, so she may surprise us all.  Louis has also been away from the pro role on DWTS since season 6, but he has definitely not fallen off the radar, performing in group numbers on the show & choreographing for the most recent season of SYTYCD.

15.) Macy Gray & Jonathan Roberts – Macy has been out of the spotlight for a few years now (her last album came out in 2007), and Jonathan has been as well (he returned last season after being absent since season 6, only to be voted out the first round).  I worry this could hinder them in votes, as well as the fact that Macy is not an athlete - I think having at least some experience in a sport (or any form of movement) seems to help when learning any kind of dance, so compared to a lot of her competition this season, Macy may be at a disadvantage.  She does, however, have an advantage in the fact that she is a mother of 3, which may endear her to the many moms that tune into the show. 

16.) Tom DeLay & Cheryl Burke – Poor, poor Cheryl Burke.  Someone had to take him on this season, and I guess she drew the short straw.  At 62, he is the oldest contestant this season (and a non-athlete), so he may not be able to keep up with young, athletic powerhouses like Louie & Natalie.  He’s also a former politician – a disgraced former politician.  I think that alone will make him hard for America to rally behind, and may be his undoing in this competition.  However, we have no precedents for politicians on the show, so I guess we’ll have to wait and see how the votes fall. I have a feeling that any chance of success this pair has this season will hinge upon Cheryl’s instruction and choreography.  She’s a two-time DWTS champ, and is known for her “tough love” approach to teaching, which seems to bring out the best in her partners…so if anyone can keep Tom in the competition, it’s Cheryl!

So there you have it…my initial predictions for this season’s 16 couples.  Who will end up on top and who will get stuck at the bottom of the heap? We’ll see!

August 26, 2009 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!

What’s Going On With The Older Pros And New Producers Of Dancing With The Stars?

What’s going on with the older pros and the new producers of Dancing With The Stars? Some of you have been commenting on this in comments. In some new interviews with Access Hollywood and an ESPY interview in Glamour, Cheryl Burke has mentioned that she wasn’t sure if she was coming back to the show.

Earlier in the day on Access Hollywood Live, Cheryl Burke revealed to Billy Bush and Kit Hoover that she wasn’t quite sure if she’d be returning to Dancing With the Stars this season. When I caught up with the stylish star (seriously, has she ever looked better?), she admitted that indeed, she may not be returning. “I have spent a decade on the show, and it may be time for me to move on. I don’t know. I’ll decide in a month from now. I love my Dancing family, and I will always be a part of it. Would I still love to do it? Absolutely. But is it time [to move on]? Who knows.”

Also, George Pennacchio posted a tweet yesterday saying this about Cheryl.

Look who’s joined the reporter world! @CherylBurke is working for #ABC, interviewing stars of the fall season.

It sure makes one wonder if Cheryl has other things in the works like reporting on the show for ABC instead of dancing?

And what about Maks Chmerkovksiy? In a new Ballroom With Twist interview (see in a previous post), Maks said he “didn’t know” he was coming back to Dancing With Stars and couldn’t say yet as “life gets in the way” sometimes.

Also, Life & Style (thanks Lori, you are just in time), are reporting Maks is itching to take Len Goodman’s place at the judging table. He’s just waiting to see what Len decides.

Life & Style has exclusively learned that reigning champ Maksim Chmerkovskiy is itching to take his place. “Maks really, really wants to be a judge,” a DWTS insider dishes to Life & Style. “He’s just waiting to see what Len decides before he makes his announcement.”

In light of this news, Maks’ recent confession to Life & Style about his future with the dancing competition series makes a lot more sense: “Len and I will get together and think about [whether I will return],” Maks recently told the mag. “When the season’s over, I’m depleted. I have nothing left.” Sounds like he’s ready to take a seat at the judges’ table!

Derek Hough is a big question mark as well. Though at the Denver “Move Live On Show” (and this I witnessed for myself.), he said (when asked if he was coming back for the new season) he will always be a part of Dancing With The Stars, but, he didn’t know in what role yet.

“Role”? What did he mean by role exactly? Dancing, producing, choreographing for Macy’s …or something else?

I just hope the show isn’t going to rid of old pros too much if that’s what happening? I love Cheryl and Derek as pros and I don’t want them to leave (not to mention that these are my Dad’s two favorites and I’m not sure he’ll watch the show without them). Then again, if they are still staying on the show in another way, I’m open to seeing what they are doing to before deciding.

As for Maks, I really would rather not see him be a pro if his heart isn’t into it. I wouldn’t care if he was a judge as long as it was just a one time thing.

Also, what about Tony? No word on him …yet. I’d like to see him retire from Dancing With The Stars and concentrate more on reporting. He’s excellent for Extra…especially when Leah Remini is around.

Let’s see what Heidi and Courtney think?

Courtney: Well, I think we’ve been predicting this for a few seasons now – that some of the “old guard” would finally hang up their dancing shoes and move on. Cheryl & I are pretty close in age, and if she’s anything like me, the big 3-0 tends to bring with it a shift in priorities – you start to think more about what you really want to do with your life, and how to make it happen. She’s had a great run on the show (particularly the past two seasons), she looks fantastic, and she’s got a lot of opportunities opening up for her – now may be the perfect time to bow out and pursue other endeavors. And we’ve been bittersweetly hoping that Derek moves onto bigger and better things for the better part of 2 years now – and I think he’d probably already be gone if the show didn’t keep finding new ways to challenge him. But he’s done it all now – is there really anything that could top the thrill of helping a double amputee make it all the way to 2nd place? I get the feeling that’s a memory that he might not want to even try to top. And as always, he’s got 15 bajillion other irons in the fire – a book, a national tour, tv shows, movies, etc. I could see him returning to the show in some other capacity (more choreographing, guest judging, etc.), but I think he’s probably gotten all he’s going to get out of being a pro. As for Maks – in the 3-ring circus of ridiculous publicity that has become his post-season 18 legacy, I just find myself rolling my eyes and going “Yeah, whatever” to basically everything he says/that’s said about him. Part of me thinks he doesn’t want another stab at being a pro, because he likely will never win again (unless they set him up with the same primo situation they did this season); but part of me thinks he wants the attention badly enough that he’d begrudgingly accept a pro spot again if they don’t give him the judging job he apparently wants. And the worst part? I think TPTB just might be dumb enough to give it to him, if Len really is passing the judging torch. Since they’ve apparently decided that Maks is the lifeblood of this show (not the case – the show is bigger than any single pro), I could see them figuring that his season 18 win is the perfect lead-in for his segue into judging. Nevermind the fact that he’d be judging not only his own brother, his best bud, and two of his ex-girlfriends, he’d also being lecturing some far more experienced and successful pros on how to win. No thank you…

Heidi: In terms of Maks, we should also look at this Glamour article I posted the other day that says that Len says he’s coming back. So if Maks wants a spot it’s as judge number 4. It’s also pretty stupid of Maks to claim that he and Len will discuss it; it’s not up to EITHER of them as to whether Maks is a judge or not. The only reason he could plausibly make such a claim is if the producers told him he could have Len’s spot if Len decided to leave. Well, in the article I linked, the producers said that all three judges would be back. All that said, I have to agree with Courtney that it seems like a natural segue to the producers. And considering the fact that the BWAT show on Saturday is less than half sold, I think he should probably jump at it.  This may also explain the 3-ring circus around him. And really, if you want people to stop speculating about your private life, STOP TALKING ABOUT IT.   Cheryl? I can see people saying, “Oh, she always says that at this time of year because they don’t know if they have partners.” No, listen to what she says in the second video on this earlier post by Vogue. She explicitly says SHE hasn’t decided yet. Not that she hasn’t heard. She goes on to say that she’s been on the show for 10 years, which is a really long time. None of the usual claptrap about “oh, I have to wait to see if I get a partner.”  Very telling, IMO. They might lure her back…but they might not.  Maybe Billy and the other AH chick are right and she’s negotiating her contract. I’ve thought that Derek has been going season to season for a while, I imagine Cheryl (and others) are too. As for Derek….well, I may have to fly to LA and slap him if he signs up for a partner after such a great, DWTS-career defining one as Amy. Dude, please. But besides that, if he actually gets a partner he will have been dancing nearly every day 8 months, assuming he yet again makes a trip to the finals. This on top of all the other stuff he has going on.  When I saw him in June, it certainly sounded like he wouldn’t have a partner if he was on again. I’m thinking Macy’s. Interestingly, Julianne was asked the question too and didn’t say an outright “no” which also makes you wonder.  Perhaps Maks has some competition in the judge department? ;-)

Courtney: Ooh! About Tony – some of you probably saw me talk about it on Twitter, but the bf actually had dinner with Tony last Friday when he was in town doing a meet-and-greet at a dance wear store in Indy (they go back to Tony’s competition days – they hated each other back then, but get along well now). Tony didn’t say anything SPECIFICALLY, but the bf said that Tony “spoke as if he were planning on coming back”. The bf is of the opinion that Tony can probably stay on the show as long as he wants, as he played a “pretty pivotal role” in getting a lot of the pros to do the show back in the early days, and gave the producers a lot of suggestions about the format itself. For that reason, a lot of the pro ballroom world kind of looks at him as the “godfather of DWTS”. That probably has a lot to do with his longevity on the show – and if Cheryl does opt not to return this season, Tony will become the longest-tenured pro on the show. But anywho – random fun fact: Tony is apparently a big cigar enthusiast, and convinced the bf to go to a cigar bar after dinner. Take note, fangirls looking to woo him :-P

Heidi: Ugh.  The man needs to retire. But Courtney…which fangirls are you talking about? Tony’s or your bf’s? :-D

Courtney: Tony’s. My bf’s already got too many fan girls (his students) and his newfound fondness for cigars is a habit I’d rather not encourage. :-)

July 18, 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 Season 18, THE FINALE, Part 2 – Let’s Recap Tonight’s Show (Spoilers)

Repeat of rules from last night/last week: Once again, due to heavy traffic, we have to institute a few ground rules for tonight show. Most of these are good rules ALL OF THE TIME, and are basic netiquette.

  1. DO NOT hit refresh every few seconds – in fact, do not hit refresh every five minutes! Read, comment if you like, then walk away from the computer for five to ten minutes. I know this is hard, but it will prevent others from losing their minds trying to read and/or update the site.
  2. DO NOT use the comment section like it’s twitter – it’s not twitter. Make an actual comment with context of who you’re talking about, who you’re talking to (if it applies), etc. Context, and more than one line. If you break this rule more than one time, I start deleting. If you do it a couple times, you’ll find yourself on moderation.  Perhaps for life. :-)  Keep in mind that if you can’t follow this rule, I can make you follow it.
  3. Try very hard to keep the ugly to a minimum. Think before you post. If you’ve been called out previously on this blog for your behavior, this will be extra important because there’s only so much I will tolerate. I’m not talking about differing opinions, I’m talking about nasty. If I get the sense that you are purposely trolling  (look it up if you’re not sure), I will just block you. No warning other than this one.

Again, we’ve turned on the Comment Moderation feature for the entire site. That way, in the event of an unexpected elimination, we can week out any trouble makers that much quicker. ;-)

So, if you’re in rehab from the drinking during last night’s show, raise your hand. :-D …Read more

May 20, 2014 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. :-)

PureDWTS Season 18, Week 1 – Power Rankings

So season 18 – the season of “lots of big changes”, and I’m not so sure I’m liking them.  Right off the bat – skeptical about Erin as a cohost.  Seems like she isn’t about playing 2nd banana to Tom – felt like she was just waiting for her turn to talk, and was trying too hard to be clever and funny when asking her questions…which, by the way, were exactly what I worried they would be: pointed, uncomfortable, and at times, salacious.  Not sure if it’s her asking those questions (or somebody up in the booth feeding them to her), but I’m not liking the gossipy, almost tabloid-y direction the show is taking – suddenly, we have to know who’s dating who, and what their significant others think about their partners, and who stole who’s boyfriend in the past, etc.  Seemed especially evident when Erin was needling-er, interviewing Cody & Witney – didn’t really enjoy the tone of that one in particular, as it sounded to me like Erin was throwing some serious shade in Witney’s direction (“Well, I think you’re a distraction!”).  Just SHUT UP, Erin – I had my fill of you channeling Regina George back in season 10.  Remember: those who stir the sh*t pot should have to lick the spoon. ;-)

And then there’s the “rivalries” – ugh.  The three major ones that they seem to be pushing are Meryl vs. Charlie, Cody vs. James, and Candace vs. Danica.  And while Conrad may have referred to them as “healthy rivalries” in his press release – I would hardly call dredging up 20-year-old drama about stolen boyfriends to be “healthy”.  Are we sure the Muppets in the production office haven’t been replaced by high school girls? Because some of this stuff is seriously immature.  But hey, if they’re gonna continue pushing the rivalries – guess I’ll do a weekly scorecard of them, too, since these things seem to be UBER-IMPORTANT on DWTS these days.  But anyhow…shall I get on with the rankings? :-)

1.) Charlie & Sharna – Can’t say I’m too surprised here, as we had heard that Charlie’s routine was “REALLY good!” and we all kind of expected both he & Meryl to easily handle their routines.  Was pleasantly surprised at how well he handled the (pretty short) section of side-by-side contemporary choreography – he seems to really get the “pulse” of contemporary, and knows how to use his limbs properly.  He’s obviously SPECTACULAR doing lifts, and he handled the many ones Sharna threw at him without so much as a bobble…but that’s probably my one big critique of this routine: it was very, VERY lift-heavy.  Seemed like most of the routine was either prepping for a lift or doing the lift, as opposed to doing any separate steps.  Contemporary does NOT mean “do all sorts of lifts!” I would caution Sharna not to get tempted to throw every lift she knows into any routine in which it’s allowed, simply because her partner is quite possibly even a better lifter than Tony.  Beyond that, I really enjoyed it, and I’m excited to see what else this partnership can do. …Read more

March 18, 2014 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!

Pure Exclusive: Sharna Burgess Talks On 2014 Version Of DWTS, BWAT With Gleb Savchenko, And Lots More

What a joy it was to interview our beautiful Miss Sharna again!! After seeing her and Gleb Savchenko in “Ballroom With A Twist” in Cheyenne, Wyoming, I had so many questions. What’s fun is…she and Gleb put an amazing, show-stopping dance number to “Fever” together only several hours before the show. Let’s hope they will perform it again on Dancing With The Stars as it literally took my breath away and I know it would take yours away as well.

Also, Sharna catches up on all of her projects that happened in the off season of Dancing With The Stars! She and her boyfriend and dancer Paul Kirkland spent Christmas together and they also helped to choreograph two dances for “Strictly Come Dancing”. Not only that, but, they also put a dance piece together for a sports charity called “Sports Relief” with 4 incredible paralympians. Sharna also recently danced in Holland America’s Dancing With The Stars At Sea Cruise. She sent us some incredible photos and pictures highlighting everything as you will soon see.

Lastly, Sharna also gives some thoughts on the new season of Dancing With The Stars and how it will be the “2014 Version”. We think you might find her thoughts interesting.

So, without further ado, below is Sharna Burgess! We thank her so much for her time again and let’s hope we see her and Gleb on the new season of Dancing With The Stars.xxx

It is so great to visit with you again, Sharna. And first, omg,…can I just say, you and Gleb took my breath away at the Cheyenne, WY Ballroom With A Twist Shows Feb. 1st! So, what did you think of Cheyenne and the Rocky Mountains? Did you like the SNOW? I hope you will come back to the Rocky Mountain region again one day again.

Hi Vogue!!! Thank you so much for your beautiful review AND amazing photos!! that certainly means a lot to both Gleb and I. Unfortunately I didn’t get to see very much of Cheyenne, I flew in late the night before the show and super early the morning after, but I have to say that I loved the snow. Being Australian I have never really seen snow all that often, and what little snow we do have in Australia is really icy and hard, being in Cheyenne I truly understood what people mean when they say powder!! Its just so beautiful and fun to play in!! Of course we know mother nature can sometimes be cruel turn that beautiful snow into a menace, and my heart goes out to all of you who have been suffering with blizzards and painfully cold weather this season. I am truly grateful for every single person in the audience that braved the cold to come out and see us perform, Cheyenne was such an AMAZING audience and I had so much fun up on that stage! I feel like everyone’s troubles got left at the door and we all just had a wonderful evening. Its an honor for me to know that I was a part of that. I also hope that I make it back there again soon :)

BWATCheyenne2014 014

What kind of rehearsal process did you go through in getting ready for Ballroom With A Twist? I thought you and Gleb were only doing 2 dances. So, I was so happy and pleasantly surprised when you did more! They were just breathtaking as well as your costumes. You and Gleb were in an element of your own. I have to say (and I’ve heard this from other fans at PureDWTS too) that you two make one of the most beautiful pro pairings on the show. It’s true. There is a magnetism and chemistry there. Plus, you are both so funny too with the way you would tease one another.

Oh thank you!!! I absolutely love dancing with Gleb, not only is he the sweetest most humble guy on the planet, he is a fantastic partner and …Read more

February 12, 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.

PureDWTS Season 17 Rant: Really, Really Dumb Ideas About the Show (Courtesy of Facebook & Instagram)

After Elizabeth & Val’s elimination last Monday night, against my better judgement, I decided to see what fans on the DWTS Instagram page were saying about the results.  Of course I instantly regretted this decision, because I saw more than a few hystrionic, irrational, and downright idiotic complaints about everything from the scoring to the voting to the overall format of the show.  I also witnessed a horrifying lack of command of grammar, spelling, punctuation, and overall coherence when conversing in the English language 8-O And here’s what really grinds my gears: nothing has changed, guys.  The show’s scoring has been calculated the same way for 17 seasons now (50% judges’ scores, 50% viewer votes), we’ve had the same 3 judges for every season, and this is FAR from being the only voting shakeup we’ve seen in 17 seasons.  So why is everyone suddenly up in arms about it now?

We may never know for sure, but I can say this: some of the Instagram & Facebook DWTS fans have got some really, REALLY dumb ideas about the show – ideas that I’m proud to say that our Pure readers would recognize as pure poppycock in a heartbeat ;-) So of course, I just had to find a way to show you guys some of these gems – both for humor purposes and educational purposes.  All of these are actual comments, either on the DWTS Facebook page or the Instagram page, and all were posted publicly – so I’m within my rights to republish them here; but because some of these ideas are some real turds, I’ve taken pity on the commentor & blurred out any identifying details, except for the first name – cause it’s a helluva lot easier to refer to them by some name than by “idiot #1, idiot #2, idiot #3, etc”.  ;-)

Really Stupid Idea #1: The judges’ scores should have more weight.

dwtsdumbidea1

No offense, mimi, but where have you been the past 16 seasons???

I shouldn’t even have to elaborate on why this is a downright TERRIBLE idea, but I’m going to anyway because clearly some of the simple-minded folk that are backing this turd of notion don’t seem to understand that this is likely not going to have the effect they think it will. I’m guessing they assume that judges’ scores being weighted more heavily = good dancers stay, bad dancers go.  But apparently they don’t realize that the judges aren’t exactly infallible & objective – far from it, as we’ve witnessed over 17 seasons. The judges are capable of some pretty blatant favoritism towards some contestants (William Levy, anyone?) and have undeservingly HOSED other contestants (Ralph Macchio fans, this is where you nod in agreement).  They also have a tendency to “pity score” some contestants to soften the blow (*cough*BRISTOLPALIN*cough*), with the unexpected effect of said contestants outstaying their welcome.  And then there’s their personal biases: Carrie Ann & Bruno are both easily swayed by attractive young men (regardless of how well they can actually dance), while Carrie Ann seems to turn into a green-eyed monster when it comes to scoring attractive young women, and tends to take some cheap shots when critiquing them. Len has a tendency to scold Derek at least once a season, and hand out an absurdly low score as a result.  And of course, Carrie Ann’s dubious lift-policing seems to have an effect as well…just ask Corbin & Karina, who earlier this season were penalized for a lift that didn’t even exist. We’ve also talked about the “man behind the curtain” possibly exerting some influence over the judging as well – seemed awfully convenient that William Levy was getting worshipped by the judges week after week (whether or not he was actually worthy of the worship), when he was set to launch a huge deal for Univision (which is part of the ABC family…hmmmm). People REALLY want to give these clowns even MORE power? I feel like just last year, people were complaining about how the judges were terrible and needed to be replaced!!! Another point to consider: the viewers need to feel invested in this show – they need to feel like they have a say in who stays and who goes.  And the minute you start making them feel like their vote doesn’t count or counts less is the minute you start losing viewers.  Even those that don’t always vote seem to take comfort in the fact that the viewers do have the power to overturn a bad score from the judges. …Read more

November 22, 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!