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DWTS Tacky Dance Themes Part 2

Since all the songs this week are new-ish… we are deprived of being able compare Season 11 celebs with other celebs in the past… That being said… the good news is that we have other trips down memory lane to give you! Meaning another round of Tacky Dance Themes! *evil cackle*

So here you have it… round two of the Tacky Dance Themes, if you are wondering what the heck is this about… go to Part I and enjoy the commentary.

Now what other couples decided to have some strange dance themes prior to the “Dancing Through the Decades” theme and “Movie Night”?

Season 5: Mark Cuban & Kym Johnson
Dance: Samba
TV/Movie Program: I Dream of Jeannie
Tackiness Quotient
Music: The Theme song itself is pure instrumental, which traditionally I don’t consider as tacky. But there are so many nuances in the music that just screams the TV show that this deserves a Score: 3
Costuming: Oye, you have Kym as Jeannie in full regelia and you have Mark trying to be Major Nelson? Well, more like a geek is a better description. Granted Kym looks really good in that costume… Score: 2
Nuances: Too many to count, it didn’t bring me to a carnivale as a Samba should, it just reminded me of the show too much. Mark’s facial expressions didn’t help matters any… well at least they were having fun. Score: 2.5
Conclusion: Final Score: 7.5
I’ll admit it was a fun dance, and Kym looked good in that costume. But the concept that Jeannie would do her thing to make her partner dance is just so cliche. Still it’s better than the Star Wars routine as a dance… meaning that I don’t mind rewatching it, on occasion, with a bottle of vodka on hand (and I don’t drink).

Season 5: Cameron Mathison & Edyta Sliwinska
Dance: Paso Doble
TV/Movie Program: Superman
Tackiness Quotient
Music: Superman Theme Song… enough said. Score: 3
Costuming: You have Cameron wearing something with the letter C emblazoned on his chest similar to Superman AND Edyta wearing almost nothing but a cape? Yeeeaaaah Score: 3.
Nuances: It was okay, I can’t really think of anything, I mean it’s not like Cameron flew onto the dance floor… so Score: 1
Conclusion: Final Score: 7 out of 9
What’s a Superman dance without a cape? And what better dance to make use of a cape but the Paso Doble! The only thing that’s confusing me is whether that piece of cloth that Cameron was waving around was suppose to be his cape or is it Edyta? As odd as that sounds… it worked! Kind of, sort of, maybe.

Season 6: Jason Taylor & Edyta Sliwinska
Dance: Paso Doble
TV/Movie Program: Monday Night Football
Tackiness Quotient
Music: Monday Night Football Theme Song… ok I haven’t really watched football and didn’t really recognize the song when I first listened to it without the visual, which is a good thing so they get Score: 1
Costuming: Did they wear the colors of Jason’s team (Miami Dolphins) at the time of this season? OMG, I think they did! Score: 3.
Nuances: This seems to be a clear cut and dry Paso Doble, except for that last move at the end. Nothing that really screams tacky… but darn that last pose did it for me. Score: 2
Conclusion: Final Score: 6
It was a respectable Paso Doble, but Jason has the physique, plus this partnership moved on to be second in a Season that included Kristi Yamaguchi. Though that hood that Edyta had tacked onto her costume…. why? why? That was so distracting.

Season 6: Adam Corolla & Julianne Hough
Dance: Paso Doble
TV/Movie Program: Zorro
Tackiness Quotient
Music: Puhlease… it’s the Plaza of Execution, where else could it have come from? Score: 3
Costuming: *rolls eyes* Just look at Adam! Enough said. Score: 3
Nuances: There wasn’t much in terms of nuances… but dammit that unicycle did it for me (not to mention Julianne stripping Adam’s mask off)…. Score 2.
Conclusion: Final Score: 8
It was a fun dance, a bit stiff… there was “fluff” that I could do without, but the unicycle bit was pretty darn entertaining and just died when he got onto his feet… still >.<
Since the video cannot be embedded... here’s the link.

There you have it for this next set of Tacky Dance Themes! Stay tuned for the next installment of Tacky Dance Themes… :D

September 24, 2010 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... =)

DWTS Season 11 Casting Rumors – The Typecasting of Season 11, Part II

So apparently I might be onto something with my typecasting theories, because it seems like a lot of you are also trying to deduce from the absolutely CRAZY amount of rumors flying around who might be fulfilling each type…and honestly, at this point, I have no clue what to believe :-P But that’s the fun of DWTS, right?

If the majority of what’s being reported is true (doubtful), then it looks to me like they might actually skip some types this season (haven’t heard any major reports about soap stars or hosts);  but if they’re leaking only a few actual celeb participants and the rest are red herrings, then we might get few suprises thrown in and have a more “well-rounded” cast.  But enough general speculation – on with the rest of the types!

The Teen Idol

Previous examples: Joey McIntyre, Aaron Carter, Donny Osmond, Lance Bass, Mel B., Joey Fatone, Drew Lachey, Joey Lawrence, Ian Ziering, Cody Linley, Sabrina Bryan, Mario Lopez

Advantages: If sales of Tiger Beat are any indicator, the teenyboppers will come out in full force to support their favorite heartthrobs/idols.  Being young & good-lookin’ sure doesn’t hurt! Many also have the added advantage of having a decent dance background, especially if they were part of a musical act.

Disadvantages: Youth can also have its disadvantages – as in immaturity.  What some might call “youthful exuberance”, others might call “immaturity” or “attention deficit disorder” – poor Cody Linley had a hard time sitting still! Emotional immaturity (a la Aaron Carter’s post-rumba meltdown in the confessional) can be especially off-putting.

Possible candidates this season: Looks like Brandy is our best guess. 

The Host

Previous examples: Jerry Springer, Brooke Burke, Leeza Gibbons, Mario Lopez, Kenny Mayne, Lisa Rinna, Tucker Carlson, Mark Dacascos, Rocco DiSpirito, Erin Andrews

Advantages: Being that they’ve been at the helm of their own shows, these guys usually have the media savvy & charisma to appeal to the masses, as well as the previous exposure & recognizability.  Most (not all!) are also decently attractive, which never seems to hurt (unless, of course, you’re a model – see previous post for explanation).

Disadvantages: Many hosts are only used to hosting – as in just sitting down & talking (or dodging the occasional punch, if you’re Springer), so the lack of movement experience problem seems to come into play. 

Possible candidates this season:  Chris Jericho also hosts some show on NBC, so I guess he could do double-duty and fulfill the role of both the athlete and the host. 

The Actor

Previous examples: John O’Hurley, Melissa Joan Hart, Steve Guttenburg, John Ratzenberger, Debi Mazar, Denise Richards, Ted McGinley, Shannon Elizabeth, Jennie Garth, Vivica Fox, Marissa Jaret Winokur, Shannen Doherty

Advantages: Being that their bread & butter is acting, most can usually nail the emotions of the dances. Bonus points if they’ve done any Broadway (like Winokur) because they have likely had dance experience.

Disadvantages: For lack of a better term, many of them seem to be “has-beens” – actors that haven’t been particularly active in the mainstream in the past several years – or were never that big to begin with (can anyone else think of anything John O’Hurley has been in BESIDES Seinfeld?), making it harder for them to garner votes from a public who may not remember them. 

Possible Candidates this season: This one has blown up big within the last few days – we’ve got David Hasselhoff, Jennifer Grey, & Florence Henderson (who could also be considered a “legend”) now on our radar. There’s been a campaign for Bern Nadette Stanis, as well as one for Leslie Jordan that he himself is heading up.  Also a minor campaign for Melissa Peterman.

The Reality Star

Previous examples: Kim Kardashian, Kelly Osbourne, Melissa Rycroft, Steve-O, Holly Madison, Trista Sutter, Shanna Moakler, Kate Gosselin, Jake Pavelka

Advantages: Many have achieved pop culture icon status on their respective reality outlets, making them fairly recognizable.

Disadvantages: They may be memorable for the wrong reasons – people tended to remember things like Kim Kardashian’s sex tape more than her reality show, and people seemed more focused on Holly Madison’s split from Hef than her antics on The Girls Next Door.  Many can also come across as attention-hungry & talentless – reality TV is often looked down upon as a way to get famous without having any talent whatsoever. 

Possible candidates this season: Oy vey – this is the subtype that has had, by far, the greatest amount of casting rumors…everyone from The Situation to Teresa Giudice to both Ali Fedotowsky & fiancée Roberto Martinez, to Audrina Patridge, but it’s hard to tell who’s got a legit chance and who’s bluffing.  Personally, I’m still holding out for Sig Hansen ;-)

The Singer

Previous examples: Mya, Billy Ray Cyrus, Mario, Belinda Carlisle, Master P, Chuck Wicks, Sara Evans, Willa Ford, Monique Coleman, Toni Braxton, Macy Gray, Nicole Scherzinger

Advantages: As with the teen idols, many have had dance experience concurrent with their music careers. 

Disadvantages: Most seem to be committed solely to one genre of music (often R&B or country), making it hard to appeal to a wide fanbase.

Possible candidates this season: Most obvious choice? Michael Bolton.  But in the same token, you could also have Brandy and/or David Hasselhoff fulfilling this role if they’re trying to kill 2 birds with one stone. The Xzibit rumor is still lingering slightly, and Pete Wentz fans are still holding out hope.

The Wild Card

Previous examples: Heather Mills, Tom DeLay, Mark Cuban, Steve Wozniak, Priscilla Presley, Buzz Aldrin

Advantages: The sheer novelty of having someone with such an off-the-beaten-path claim to fame (famous divorcee/widow, entrepreneur, disgraced politician, etc.) may be enough to have the public voting them – just to see what happens.  Being the “underdog” is a powerful thing!

Disadvantages: Due to their often dubious fame, people just may not have any clue who they are – I personally had to Google Mark Cuban’s name.

Possible candidates this season: Can it get much wild card-ier than Bristol Palin?! Good grief…still trying to wrap my brain around how they’re going to try and spin her claim to fame…

Did you miss part I of my typecasting of season 11? Check it out here.  Feeling nostalgic? Check out parts I & II of my typecasting of season 10, and see how everything stacked up ;-)

August 28, 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 Stat Class: What’s Running Order Got to Do with It?

With 10 seasons of DWTS behind us now, we’re at an interesting place – we’ve got enough data and scores at our disposal to do some interesting statistical analyses of the show.  Ever wonder if there’s any interesting patterns in scoring, running order, dance selection, or even pro pairings? Well, wonder no more – because we’re about to run those numbers, and bring some surprising patterns to light…I like to call it “DWTS Stat Class”. :-D 

Here’s an interesting fact: out of the 83 regular, weekly eliminations (not counting elims that determined placements in the finals or withdrawals from the competition – the math just gets too tricky with those) in the 10 seasons of DWTS, only 39 of them were couples that were that week’s lowest scorer – roughly 47%.  So what does that mean? Well, that the other 53% of the time, some factor other than a low score resulted in a couple getting sent home.  While the obvious answer to some might be “Well those couples just weren’t as popular!”, there’s no scientific, finite way to measure popularity on the show, and we unfortunately aren’t privy to the vote counts for each couple.  However, there are other factors we can take an objective measurement of – running order, dance choice, even the pro you’re paired with…and that’s where some interesting stats pop up. 

DISCLAIMER: I am not a professional statistician, nor am I a Vegas sports bookie – I am well aware that these calculations are not perfect, nor are they particularly sophisticated.  There are simply too many variables to account for in order make these stats “airtight”, and quite frankly, I don’t have the time or the desire to try.  These are just general observations, to be taken with a grain of salt – so if anyone starts complaining in the comments about this not being “scientific” enough, go run the numbers yourself…I’ll even publish your findings on this site.  But you don’t get to bitch & moan if you can’t do better yourself.  Mmmmmkay? ;-)

 Today’s topic? Running order.  The question: is it possible that the order in which the couples dance on performance night can affect their odds of elimination that week? The answer, based upon my findings: sure seems like it.

 Some of you have heard me talk about the “money spot” (dancing last) or the “crap spot” (dancing first) in my power rankings – my general observation is that those who dance last are less likely to get sent home, as their performances are fresh in the viewers’ minds when they’re voting after the show; those who dance first are more at risk of getting sent home, as an entire show’s length has elapsed since their performance and they’re often forgotten by the voters. 

 Well, after taking a closer look at the running order of eliminated couples, it seems as though the numbers are consistent with my first hypothesis – only 3 out of the 83 eliminations were couples that had danced last on performance night (or one of 2 performance nights, if there was no elimination previous week, so the couples would have danced twice before a particular elimination); it may also be worth noting that two of the couples, Joey McIntyre & Ashly Costa and Ty Murray & Chelsie Hightower, were also the low scorers that week (and both were eliminated in the semifinals, when scores are of greater importance) – so their departure may have had more to do with a low score than the order in which they danced.  Based on that, it seems to me that, unless a couple does exceptionally poorly any given week, if they dance last – the chances of them getting eliminated that week are slim to none, unless it’s one of the final weeks of the competition. Guess if you’re a couple having an off-week, you should hope and pray that you get to go last!

 As for my “crap” spot hypothesis about going first – I was wrong.  Only 11 out of 83 eliminations were from couples that had danced first on performance night (or, again, on at least one of 2 performance nights, if there was no elimination the previous week and the couples danced twice before an elimination).  That’s only about 13.25%.  However, there was an overwhelming percentage of eliminations for couples who danced 2nd in the running order during the week they were eliminated – about 30%, by far the greatest of all the running order positions. And this was regardless of how many couples total danced that week!  Of those, only 9 were actually the lowest scorer during the week they were eliminated – so maybe the other 16 were part of the “curse of #2”.  I guess it makes sense to me – if you go first, you’re still at least the first one viewers have seen, so they’ll likely remember you because of it; but if you go second (or anywhere in the middle of the pack), you’re more likely to get lost in the shuffle. A good example of the new “crap spot” in action – Shannen Doherty.  Poor girl got a pretty lousy draw in the running order lottery – she danced 2nd in week one, and 1st in week two…overall, a pretty hard combo to overcome, which may have had something to do with her getting sent home despite not being the week’s lowest scorer. 

 So what about the “middle of the pack” positions, you ask? Well things get a bit tricky there, since there hasn’t been the same number of competitors each season, so I’m not going to go into the details of positions 3, 4, 5…etc.  However, two interesting points: one, no one who has danced in a position greater than 10th in the running order in a given week has gotten sent home; two, over 70% of the eliminations have been couples who danced in the first half of the show the night they performed.  What can we extrapolate from that? Well, it seems like the closer your performance is to the end of the show, the better – if you can’t go last, at least you can hope that you perform in the second half of the show, because it seems a helluva lot safer than dancing in the first half!

 Here’s another interesting tidbit, which I already sort of touched on above: the closer you get to the end of the season, the less running order seems to matter.  At about the halfway point in each season, the patterns I’ve mentioned above seem to show up less frequently – and couples tend to be sent home based more on low score than anything else.  Why? Probably because it’s easier to get lost in the middle of a big group of couples (such as the first half of the season) than it is to get forgotten in a much smaller group (second half of the season).  The fact that people have already established their favorites and know who the strong couples are by the middle of the season may also play a role – the second half of the season really seems to separate the men from the boys (and the women from the girls!), so to speak, and actually giving good performances with high scores tends to matter more.

 So what can we conclude about running order, class? ;-)

Well, we can’t really conclude anything – lord knows this show can be completely unpredictable at times, and no pattern we find is guaranteed to hold true.  HOWEVER, we can say it seems as though you’re safe if you dance last, pretty safe if you dance in the second half of the show, slightly at a disadvantage if you dance in the first half, and you’re almost totally screwed if you dance 2nd.  I guess 2nd place really is first place loser ;-) But if it’s later in the season – well, then you just better dance like there’s no tomorrow!

August 13, 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 10 Kate & Tony Dance Comparison

After watching “Movie Night” on Dancing with the Stars, I realized that there were several songs used this season that were recycled from previous seasons.

Since this past week Kate Gosselin was eliminated, I decided to post up her “recycled” dances first. Not only Kate & Tony’s dances, but the previous celeb and pro to have danced them…

Below are two dances done to the song She’s Always a Woman Billy Joel - The Essential Billy Joel - She's Always a Woman by Billy Joel… both done as a Viennese Waltz

Season 6: Marlee Matlin & Fabian Sanchez

Season 10: Kate Gosselin & Tony Dovolani Read more..

April 22, 2010 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... =)