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Dancing with the Stars Season 19 – “What do you mean I’m a ringer??” Update

Introduction

A couple of seasons ago, I created a set of criteria with which to measure the benefits some dancers on DWTS have compared to the other dancers. That is, ringers versus non-ringers. I attempted to be as logical and scientific as possible, although it’s impossible to remove all subjectivity from the issue. But it’s far better than simply saying “so and so isn’t a ringer, IMO”. In your opinion? If your opinion is purely subjective with no effort at logical or rational thought, then what good is it??

No good at all, actually. The original series sprung from an effort to debunk the old, tired and stupid claim that the only reason Derek does well is because he gets all the good partners and no one else gets them. Utter BS, of course. It would be a good idea to read that series before starting this one as I can’t guarantee that I’ll include all the same rationale this second time around and I don’t take well to discussing a subject with someone who is so rude as to not read the blogs.

Ringers Part One

Ringers Part Two

Ringers Part Three

Of course, certain people who didn’t like the results of that research tried desperately to turn the argument around and claim: “Well, Derek never gets any ‘bad’ partners, like Kate Gosselin”. Um, there has only been ONE Kate Gosselin and ONE Wendy Williams – it’s not at all like everyone is getting those kinds of partners except Derek. Tony is the only one who gets them and there’s good reason for that one, I would say.  But that’s a different subject altogether. :-) …Read more

September 14, 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. :-)

DWTS Celebrities: “What do you mean, I’m a Ringer?” Part 3

This is the 3rd and final part of the series where I take a look at the partners the pros have had and their “ringer” status. Part 1 discusses how I define a ringer – you can find it here —> I’m a Ringer?? Part 2 discusses the female pros and their partners and how I labeled them – I think it’s pretty clear that they’ve not been quite as blessed as the men. Reasons for that should be self evident – female celebrities are more likely to have some sort of dance experience, even if it is taking ballet or tap as a child.  NOTE: This was mostly written before the pairings were announced for Season 14 – those pairings certainly change the game for lots of pros. Lots of potential ringers on this season.

I strongly recommend you read the first two parts before you comment – I don’t want to have to reiterate everything I wrote MONTHS ago. :-)  Also, be wise and don’t complain about the length, admit that you didn’t read it all, and then argue with me – that will just earn you scorn and an eye roll.  I know this is long – I considered breaking it into two parts, but then I figured it’s still long in two parts. People will either be interested or they won’t.  :::shrug:::  Also take note that I, personally, don’t care about ringers themselves. I think a season without them is deadly.  What I DO care about is hypocrisy, revisionist history and the fairy tales that some like to spread about who has had ringers and who hasn’t.

From where I sit, there are two types of ringers – and then there’s just being blessed. Fanbase ringer (ie. Donny Osmond, etc.) or Experience Ringer (Mel B, Nicole, Sabrina, etc.), and lucky get (Lalia, Brooke, Gilles, JR). Just because someone happens to be a great dancer doesn’t mean they are a ringer. When someone is blessed with a partner who can dance, it doesn’t mean they were handed a ringer. That particular argument is so illogical that it’s hard for me to take seriously. If they actually seriously auditioned people to be on this show by making them dance with a pro for an hour or two, it would be understandable. But they don’t stand people in a room with a pro dancer and then say, “wow, she’s got some moves, let’s give her to Maks” or “she sucks, lets give her to Tony.” It doesn’t work that way. If it did, they wouldn’t be able to get people on the show. And can you imagine a pro like Tony sticking around if that was the approach they took?

As it happens, and as many people connected to the show have reiterated, the process of how a pro gets a celebrity often has to do with height, personality, looks, chemistry and the cast as a whole…and this becomes obvious as the show progresses. They are actually quite good at matching people up. I would imagine they give this a lot of consideration as it impacts, or has the potential to impact, ratings.  You’re going to try to avoid having a bunch of pairings that make people go “eeewww” or get seriously pissed off. I think you need to limit that to one couple per season. Can you imagine what it would be like for every pro on a season to have a partnership similar to that of Hope and Maks??  I would want to stab my eyes out with a fork if they were ALL like that and there was no Carson/Anna or David/Kym. Seriously – think about it.  So, it may be good to have ONE Maks/Hope – gives people (me and Courtney) something to talk about, rant about, get passionate about, etc. (This is separate from a discussion of whether Maks finally went too far or not – I don’t think that’s what the producers intended.) Read more..

March 11, 2012 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. :-)

DWTS14 Casting Rumors – The Typecasting of Season 14, Part II

So we’re less than 24 hours away from finding out who is and isn’t part of this season’s cast.  Who’s pumped??? I know I am…but we’ve still got a few hours left to speculate, so let’s see what other cast types we’ve to fill this season, shall we? ;-) For those of you that may have missed it, check out part I as well.

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, Kyle Massey, Chelsea Kane, Romeo

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. They’ve also got to contend with the large middle-aged female contingent of viewers/voters – they far outnumber the young viewers likely to vote for them.

Possible candidates this season: There’s that random Nicole Anderson chick that’s a friend of Chelsea Kane’s, and Heidi found some compelling evidence that rapper Darnell Robinson may be participating this season.

The Host

Previous examples: Jerry Springer, Brooke Burke, Leeza Gibbons, Mario Lopez, Kenny Mayne, Lisa Rinna, Tucker Carlson, Mark Dacascos, Rocco DiSpirito, Erin Andrews, Wendy Williams, Mike Catherwood, Carson Kressley, Nancy Grace, Ricki Lake

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: This category seems to have EXPLODED with possibilities this season – the most solid of which being Sherri Shepherd, who was caught leaving the DWTS studio the other day.  I’m still wondering if someone fr0m GMA is part of the cast this season, since they all seemed to act so coy when announcing they’d be revealing the cast. And then we have the Maria Menounos rumor as well.

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, Jennifer Grey, David Hasselhoff, Ralph Macchio, Kirstie Alley, David Arquette

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: We’ve got Melissa Gilbert & Ryan O’Neal, of course, but nothing really beyond that.

The Reality Star

Previous examples: Kim Kardashian, Kelly Osbourne, Melissa Rycroft, Steve-O, Holly Madison, Trista Sutter, Shanna Moakler, Kate Gosselin, Jake Pavelka, Audrina Patridge, The Situation, Rob Kardashian, Kristin Cavallari

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 when she was on DWTS, 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(*cough*JakePavelka*cough*) – reality TV is often looked down upon as a way to get famous without having any talent whatsoever.

Possible candidates this season: Lots of talk about Ali Fedotowsky, who suspiciously moved to LA last week.

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, Chynna Phillips

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: Lots of loose lips at the Grammys about Gavin DeGraw, but it seems like less of a possibility now, considering that he is about to go on tour.

The Wild Card

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

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…as we saw with Bristol in season 11!

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. There’s also the risk of backlash from some viewers who don’t think they’re “stars” per se, and shouldn’t even be on the show in the first place.

Possible candidates this season: Surprisingly, not too many outlandish rumors…especially since Herman Cain & Michelle Bachman have denied they’re doing the show. Phew!

So we’re getting down to the wire, kids…any last-minute predictions before the big reveal? ;-)

February 27, 2012 I Written By

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

DWTS Celebrities: “What do you mean, I’m a Ringer?” Part 2

This is Part 2 in what will likely be a 3-part series. If you want to read Part 1, you can find it here —> I’m a Ringer??

Well, let me tell you, researching these former contestants was not particularly enjoyable. But, I felt like some research had to go into this in order to try to be somewhat informed and to remove some of the subjectivity. Not all of it can be removed, but I tried.

How did I get my results?

For each celebrity who was *possibly* experienced or popular, I focused research on their web sites (if available), their Wiki pages, and YouTube videos.  Then there were google searches. Yikes.  If a celebrity was clearly not a ringer in any way shape or form (ie Football players, rodeo riders, race car drivers) I did not look into their background any further. I did spend some time on this, but since I have another job that takes my time, it’s possible I missed something. :-) BUT, just because you don’t agree with my rankings, it doesn’t mean I DID miss something. Just sayin’. :-)

Determining if someone is actually a fanbase ringer is rather difficult as well. My metric for that determination is: Is this person well known and well loved by the biggest DWTS demographic – that is women aged about 30 to 65. These are the people most likely to watch the show and vote.  Where it gets tricky is guys like Joey Lawrence and Ian Zeiring – it’s guys like this that caused me the most pain.  Why? Well, because my brain is saying, “Nah” but my gut is saying “Just because you’re not a fan doesn’t mean they don’t have sizable fanbases. :-) So, at the end of the day, I decided for my purposes that for them to be a fanbase ringer, it had to be OBVIOUS.  That is – if I know they’re super popular, then they probably really are.  If I don’t really know much about them….then they probably aren’t. I fit the demographic, after all. :-) Read more..

September 17, 2011 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. :-)

DWTS13 Casting Rumors – The Typecasting of Season 13, Part II

 So with each hour closer to the cast announcement that we get, we seem to be getting more and more leaks of who’s in – the next 24 hours will definitely be the time to stay tuned to PureDWTS, as we’ll be posting any potential last minute leaks as soon as we hear them! I dunno about you guys, but I’m getting excited…so let’s take a look at who else we might expect to see, based on casting patterns ;-)

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, Kyle Massey, Chelsea Kane, Romeo

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. They’ve also got to contend with the large middle-aged female contingent of viewers/voters – they far outnumber the young viewers likely to vote for them.

Possible candidates this season: Now that the Candace Cameron-Bure rumor seems to have died down, it looks like we’re going to be seeing former child starKim Richards, also of Real Housewives of Beverly Hills fame…maybe she’s doing double-duty as the reality star this season, too!

The Host

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

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: I’ve started preparing myself to watch Nancy Grace try to hoof it this season, though I can’t say I’m even the tiniest bit excited about it.  Someone hosts I’d rather see? Craig Ferguson or Ricki Lake – the former is just hilarious, and the latter might actually be pretty good due to her Broadway background.

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, Jennifer Grey, David Hasselhoff, Ralph Macchio, Kirstie Alley

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: I think it’s safe to say David Arquette is a lock.  There’s been a couple of murmurs about Henry Winkler as well, and I’m still wondering if Lorenzo Lamas is gonna crop up, after all the talking he did last season.

The Reality Star

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

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 when she was on DWTS, 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(*cough*JakePavelka*cough*) – reality TV is often looked down upon as a way to get famous without having any talent whatsoever. 

Possible candidates this season: We had the great Snooki scare of 2011 (which I doubt is going to amount to anything), but Rob Kardashian & Kristen Cavallari’s names are still being tossed around. 

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: Christina Milian’s name has been said quite a bit, but we haven’t had any confirmation. But rumor has it Chynna Philips is definitely in. 

The Wild Card

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

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…as we saw with Bristol last season!

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. There’s also the risk of backlash from some viewers who don’t think they’re “stars” per se, and shouldn’t even be on the show in the first place.

Possible candidates this season: I’d say our best bet is Chaz Bono

So we’re mere hours away from the official announcement, gang – who do you think is in and who do you think is just wishful thinking? Be sure to check back here for Heidi’s Casting Announcement Live Blog starting at 8 PM EST tomorrow night …she (and the rest of us) suffer through Bachelor Pad so you don’t have to! And make sure you’re following @puredwts & @tvblog on Twitter for up-to-the-minute updates on who’s in!

August 28, 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!

DWTS12 Week 9 Search Engine Round-Up

 

 It’s that time of the week, kids – time to see what burning questions are leading you guys here for answers :-) Let’s see what kind of light I can shed here…oh, and just in case you missed it the past 2 weeks: Hines is STILL not married ;-)

What did Bruno say to Karina?/What did Bruno call Karina?

It was bleeped out during the telecast (5:41 mark), and a friend of ours who happened to be in the studio audience that night could not hear what exactly was said over the crowd booing – so this is my best guess, given the context.  I think it was something along the lines of “You were too rough with your p*ssy!”, and it was directed more at Ralph, meaning he lead Karina (who was wearing a leopard-print bodysuit) too hard or was just out-of-control with his partnering…hence, Bruno backpedaling after the fact and saying “I mean pussycat!” (of which, I’m sure you know, there are none on the show – but how awesome would it be if there was? How bout replacing Carrie Ann with a cute little kitten and letting him judge? :-)).  Anywho…I think Karina thought it was more directed at her…and a certain part of her anatomy, which is why she (rightfully, IMO) got offended.  Bottom line: whether Bruno really did mean pussycat (psssh, riiiight) or not, it was a poor choice of words with an ambiguous context – otherwise, the Muppets up in the sound booth wouldn’t have bleeped it out.  And here’s a tidbit of probably-worthless-but-still-kinda-interesting trivia – this isn’t the first time Bruno has dropped the p-word when critiquing one of Karina’s routines.  He got bleeped for saying something about consuming it in reference to Mario & Karina’s rumba in season 6 – and I don’t think he was talking about Chinese food. :-) No wonder Karina’s touchy about that word…

Did Mark Ballas get married?

I think I can state with 99.9% certainty that the answer is no.  Why? Because I doubt he would be able to shut up about it if he had.  The .1% uncertainty is just in case he’s keeping this ace in his back pocket for publicity at a later date. Moving right along…

Did Kym Johnson have plastic surgery?

Personally, I doubt it, but short of Kym acknowledging it or denying it in an interview, I can’t confirm one way or another.  Maybe Liz can help with this one. I know there was some debate in the comments a previous post about her maybe having a brow lift, but looking at the picture in question from last season and comparing it to pictures of her now, it looks like she may have just had a very overzealous brow waxing back then, or maybe some Botox (which has now worn off) to perk things up a bit.  Not that I think she needs it, because she looks FABULOUS :-) However, if she did, no biggie – she wouldn’t have been the only DWTS pro to go under the knife.  Karina has publicly acknowledged getting a rhinoplasty and has expressed great satisfaction with the results.

Tayla

Definitely cool to see so many people interested in Tayla Kelley – the young girl that performed with Lacey & Chelsie on the results show this week. Tayla suffers from primary immunodeficiency, which is a genetic disorder that prevents her immune system from functioning properly. Simple infections that a person with a normal immune system can easily fight off can be deadly for someone with Tayla’s condition – which makes me think it’s all the more amazing & admirable that she is able to handle the rigors of being a dedicated dancer.  As much as I may hate “filler” on the results show – I definitely don’t mind hearing stories of triumph like Tayla’s :-)

Kym Johnson injury video

Ugh. *stomach churning* I’m gonna give you guys the benefit of the doubt and assume that the reason you’re searching this is because you just don’t know how Kym got injured…because seriously, this video is hard to watch – at least for me, as I’ve had a family member who became a quadriplegic after falling & hitting his neck at home.  But alas, here you go – don’t say I didn’t warn you that it was rather graphic.  If nothing else, I guess it serves as a warning to anyone on the show that they should NOT be trying this stuff at home…or anywhere else.

DWTS Season 13 casting rumors

Glad to know you guys are chomping at the bit just as much as we are to get this wretched season over with and move onto a better one :-) Generally, the casting rumors for the fall season are pretty intermittent & vague until mid-July (about a month before the cast annoucement) and then they come pouring in like crazy the week before it.  As of right now, I have only heard 2 names, and both sound like they’re pretty unlikely – Regis Philbin & Donnie Wahlberg. Last week Vogue reported that he announced on Live with Regis & Kelly that he’d been asked to be on season 13.  He seems like a big fan of the show (and is a huge Derek fanboy :-D), but he’s allegedly not leaving Regis & Kelly until November & he’s had quite a few health problems in the past few years – I just don’t see it happening.  At least not next season. As for Donnie, the campaign for him being on the show cropped up after his pretty impressive dance with Peta on the week 5 results show.  Someone started a petition (which rarely works when trying to get the attention of the casting directors – sorry kids), and both Donnie & Peta have publicly said that they’d LOVE to dance together next season.  However,  two (ok, more like 3) big hurdles to overcome:  Donnie is tied up with Blue Bloods, which just got picked up for a 2nd season, and films on-location in NY.  It’s also on CBS, and to my knowledge, they’ve never asked a someone from a current primetime show on a rival network to be on DWTS.  I doubt that’s going to change anytime soon. But hey, stay tuned – there are sure to be plenty more rumors to come in the next few months…just search “DWTS13 Casting Rumors” and any that we find are bound to pop up. 

Travis Wall boyfriend

Errr…not sure why some of you are looking for this info here, considering Travis has had a much bigger presence on SYTYCD than on DWTS…but it keeps cropping up, so I’ll entertain the notion anyway.  From what I can tell, he’s never publicly said he’s gay, but I do remember there being some pictures posted on his MySpace page a few years ago (they’ve since been taken down) that caused quite a bit of speculation, so my official opinion on the matter is that he’s most likely gay.  As for the identity of his boyfriend – well, if he’s not really, officially out, I doubt he’s going to be introducing any guys as his significant other.  However, a quick sweep of some SYTYCD forums (which one should ALWAYS take with a grain of salt) seems to indicate that Travis had a boyfriend named Anthony back when he was a contestant on SYTYCD in season 2 (summer of ’06) that somehow stabbed him in back by posting pictures of the two of them online with the caption “me & my bf travis wall”.  Ouch – I think being forced out of the closet against your will is just plain cruel. But alas, Travis managed to channel the hurt into something pretty cool – it was allegedly the inspiration for his contemporary routine on SYTYCD for Kent & Neil last season, which had a “backstabbing” theme to it. Dunno if that’s a satisfactory answer, but I think it’s a pretty interesting story :-) And in the future, kids – you might wanna direct SYTYCD-related questions to PureSYTYCD or @puresytycd on Twitter ;-) </plug> 

May 20, 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 XI – Season 12 Thus Far Edition

With a mere 4 weeks of competition complete, we’ve already seen a slew of costume dittos from the pros and also the troupe this season.  Let’s have a look, shall we? It’ll give Heidi & I some time to come up with this week’s cheesecake…and I’m sure it will be a doozy, after suffering through “American Night”-mare. :-)

Battle of the lime green, jeweled & feathered Latin costume: Peta in the “On the Floor” pro/troupe dance this season vs. Kym’s pro dance with Tony to Santana in season 11

Courtney: Hmmm.  Tough one for me.  I like Petra’s hair better, but I think the color looks better with Kym’s skin.  Although I’m not wild about that thing they’ve got going across the midriff on Kym…glad they omitted it for Peta.

Heidi: Peta is certainly beautiful, and looks good in the dress, but I don’t think the Awesome Boobage of Kym can’t be beaten – by anyone. :-) Add in that her darker tan compliments the dress and there you go. I do see something resembling a crotch doilie though and it’s giving me flashbacks. :-)

Courtney: I was thinking more “feather loincloth”, but crotch doily works too :-)

The winner: The Awesome Boobage prevails once more :-D

Battle of the beaded black mesh Latin dress with plunging neckline, redux: Karina’s pro dance with Louis to Jennifer Hudson this season vs. Anna’s pre-season photo shoot with Sugar Ray this season vs. Kym’s cha-cha with the Hoff in season 11

Heidi: Again, I have to go with Kym for reasons previously stated. :-) Plus, I think Anna is too pale in her photo and with the red hair it just washes her out. Karina looks amazing, but I would go with Kym.

Courtney: The problem with this dress is that it’s not a typical “Anna” dress – she seems to tend more towards the conservative, less va-va-va-voom Latin costumes these days, so she’s out.  I loved the way the dress looked on Karina while she was moving – quite quickly, I might add, which is why it was hard for Heidi to get a clear screen cap – but alas, Kym reigns supreme once more with her sex kitten hair, smoky eye makeup, and perpetual Awesome Boobage :-)

The winner: You don’t mess with the Awesome Boobage.

Battle of the hot pink fringed Latin dress, redux: Chelsea’s pre-season photo shoot with Mark this season vs. Lacey’s Team Kristi cha-cha with Kyle in season 11 vs. Anna in the “On the Floor” pro/troupe dance this season

Courtney: Poor Anna always seems to get stuck with the 3 & 4-peat costumes :-P God love her…she’s cute, but I’m not wild about the hot pink paired with her red hair.  Sticking with cute-as-a-button Chelsea on this one… 

Heidi: Ummm….not Lacey? :-) I think I lean toward Chelsea, as I think her hair style compliments the “cute” of the dress.

The winner: Chelsea’s still pretty in pink.

Battle of the red & gold paso doble dress: Karina’s paso doble with Mario in season 6 vs. Oksana’s paso doble demo with Kiki this season

Heidi: I’m going to go with Karina based on skin tone and, even though it’s not a fair comparison since we’re looking at stills, the movement she achieved with this dress. Although that could also be due to what appears to be a different cut to the bottom portion – did they remove a slit and the gold trim for Oksana?

Courtney: Oksana keeps reminding us of how she’s a “powerhouse in a small package”, so I’m guessing they probably had to hem this dress for her – hence, the disappearance of the gold trim at the bottom of the dress.  Looks like they also omitted the gold belt (likely to make her torso appear longer) and may have sewn up a few of the slits & jeweled the bodice to balance the look.  A good example of how some minor tweaking can really change the look of a costume :-) But I agree – I like the look better on Karina.  Just works better with her skin tone and her build.

The winner: Oksana the powerhouse-in-a-small-package is no match for powerhouse-in-any-package Karina!

Battle of the pink & red ruffled Latin dress: Oksana in the “On the Floor” pro/troupe dance this season vs. Cheryl’s samba with Gilles in season 8

Courtney: I feel like a lot of Cheryl’s costumes in season 8 were similar to this – ruffly, midriff-y, and brightly-colored.  I guess she was maybe celebrating her weight loss (and departure from the frumpy costumes she wore in season 7 to cover up her weight gain) with all of these loud dresses…but it just doesn’t feel like something that really fits her personality well.  For that reason, I’m gonna go with Oksana…seems like something she’d actually pick out for herself.

Heidi: Hmmmm….I think I have to go with Oksana and I’m not really sure why I like it better on her. Overall, I don’t much care for the dress at all, but Oksana wears it well.

The winner: Everyone’s favorite pint-sized mail-order bride – Oksana :-)

Battle of the red & orange fringed Latin dress: Melissa’s would-be jive with Tony in season 8 vs. Lacey in the “On the Floor” pro/troupe dance this season

Heidi: Again, a dress that I don’t care for much – but believe it or not I’m going to go with Lacey. Again, not a fair comparison because Lacey is benefiting from movement whereas Melissa is stationary. That said, Lacey’s hair is gawdawful.  But then, Melissa looks like a school marm posing as a hot Latin momma and failing miserably. :-)  So, it’s really a double fail, but less on Lacey. This time. :-)

Courtney: Poor Melissa – she didn’t even have a chance to show us this dress in motion (this was the week that she injured herself and was unable to do her jive, so they showed us the footage of the camera blocking instead).  She just wore it on the results show for the sake of consistency.  Not that I’m too disappointed – this dress reminds me of a Muppet.  Or rather, the leftover trimmings of a Muppet on the cutting room floor of Jim Henson studios :-) But weird & Muppet-y fits right in Lacey’s wheelhouse, so I’m gonna go with her as well.

The winner: Lacey rocks the “leftover Muppet” look well.

Battle of the pink ruffled mesh rumba dress & the jeweled & ruffled black mesh samba dress: Lacey’s rumba & samba with Kyle in season 11 vs. 2 wardrobe assistants futzing around backstage this season :-)

Courtney: Two of Lacey’s weirder costumes from last season, fo sho…but these boys are fearlessly rocking them.  The Asian guy dominates in this one – he’s even got the artsy Latin hand gesture down cold! Other guy gets points for trying, but the socks, dude? As for Lacey…she never stood a chance against either of these fashion plates :-)

Heidi: The Asian guy, definitely. The other guy would be doing well if not for the white ankle socks. ;-)

The winner: Lacey never stood a chance against the fabulosity of these two :-)

April 20, 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 Season 12 Casting Rumors – The Typecasting of Season 12, Part II

In part one of my typecasting analysis, we took a look at who we might get from the Olympian, athlete, model, comedian, legend, & soap star categories.  Now let’s take a look at the other 6 categories and speculate on who else we might see before tonight’s cast announcement!

EDITOR’S NOTE: The site is getting hit with an extraordinary amount of hits right now (which is great! :-D) but it’s also slowing us bloggers down while we post – hence, there are no links in this edition because it’s just taking too long to add them all in.  However, you can access all of the DWTS casting rumors in Vogue’s post from the other day if you need a refresher on some of these :-)

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, Kyle Massey

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: I think the Lindsay Lohan rumor has been almost completely shot down, but Full House fans have been campaigning for both Jodie Sweetin & Candace Cameron Bure in the online voting.  I’ve also seen a surge of support within the past few days for New Kids on the Block member Jonathan Knight to do the show.

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: Wendy Williams name has been repeated quite a bit, although Joan Rivers’ name was out there for awhile as a possible contestant.

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, Jennifer Grey, David Hasselhoff

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: Lorenzo Lamas has been claiming he’s on the casting “short list” for weeks now, so we’re thinking he’s a lock. 

The Reality Star

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

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: Aside from the omnipresent Heidi Montag rumor and ridiculous rumors about both NeNe Leakes & Kim Zolciak from The Real Housewives of Atlanta, we’ve also heard of former Idol contestant Danny Gokey gunning for a spot.

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: There’s been big campaigns in the online voting for both Zack Wilde & Paul Byrom, but nothing really “legit” to go off of.

The Wild Card

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

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…as we saw with Bristol last season!

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. There’s also the risk of backlash from some viewers who don’t think they’re “stars” per se, and shouldn’t even be on the show in the first place.

Possible candidates this season: Not sure if it was the hailstorm of controversy from Bristol last season or what, but this category was booming with rumors this season – everyone from Tony Robbins to Christine O’Donnell to Al Sharpton to Brooke Mueller.  Will any of them actually do the show? That remains to be seen.

So we’re mere hours away from the official announcement, gang – who do you think is in and who do you think is just wishful thinking? Be sure to check back here for Heidi’s Casting Announcement Live Blog starting at 8 PM EST…she (and the rest of us) suffer through The Bachelor so you don’t have to :-) And make sure you’re following @puredwts & @tvblog on Twitter for up-to-the-minute updates on who’s in!

February 28, 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 – History of the Judges Scores, Part 2

Part 2 in my series about the Judges Scoring History covers season 6 of Dancing with the Stars; the season of Kristi Yamaguchi and Mark Ballas (read Part 1 here). Prior to re-watching the season, I remembered it as a season in which Kristi dominated. I don’t think, anymore, that that is necessarily the case. She is still probably the biggest ringer the show has ever cast, when looking at it from a fanbase AND experience point of view, but she didn’t dominate the show in like I remember. I also never got the feeling – like I did with Nicole – that the judges were purposely underscoring her in order to make it look more like a horse race. In fact, I have very few gripes with the judging in this season, period.

Here were the scores from Week 5, onward:

Season 6 Weekly Scores (Part I)

Celebrity Week 5 Week 6 Week 7 Week 8
Kristi 29 (Rumba) 30 (Jive) 26 (V. Waltz) 29 (Quickstep)
28 (Cha Cha) 26 (Samba)
Jason 27 (Rumba) 24 (Cha Cha) 29 (Quickstep) 29 (Tango)
26 (Paso Doble) 23 (Samba)
Christian 23 (Rumba) 27 (Foxtrot) 25 (V. Waltz) 28 (Tango)
21 (Samba) 29 (Mambo)
Marissa 24 (Samba) 26 (V. Waltz) 27 (Tango) 25 (Foxtrot)
25 (Rumba) 25 (Mambo)
Mario 27 (Samba) 28 (Rumba) 24 (Foxtrot) 27 (V. Waltz)
27 (Mambo) 26 (Jive)
Shannon 23 (Samba) 24 (Rumba) 27 (Tango)
24 (Rumba)
Marlee 22 (Samba) 21 (Mambo)
Priscilla 21 (Rumba)

Season 6 Weekly Scores (Part II)

Celebrity Week 9 Week 10 Week Finale
Kristi 29 (Tango) 30 (Cha Cha) 30 (Jive)
28 (Jive) 30 (Freestyle)
Jason 28 (Foxtrot) 24 (Cha Cha) 30 (Quickstep)
27 (Paso Doble) 27 (Freestyle)
Christian 27 (V.Waltz) 26 (Cha Cha)
29 (Samba) 26 (Freestyle)
Marissa 26 (Quickstep)
26 (Rumba)

- Week 5 – The judges essentially raved about Mario and Kristi, while all the rest got constructive criticism. I think the judges gave Marissa an accurate score, but were quite harsh on Priscilla and Shannon. Both of them, in addition to Christian, were underscored, particularly when compared to Marissa. Christian, frankly, was robbed. They gave the encore to Kristi, but I was shocked to realize that, IMO, the best dance of the night belonged to Edyta and Jason.

- Week 6 – Here we see, again, a bit of over-scoring – Christian had been in the bottom 2 the previous week, so this week he gets raves on a dance that clearly seemed rushed to me. Again, Mario and Kristi get raves, and Marissa gets handled with kid gloves. Marissa isn’t a “bad” dancer, per se, but she isn’t as good as Shannon or Pricilla. I often think that if you dance better than the judges expect, you get better scores than people who danced better – if those people are expected to dance better. Follow me? Anyway, Mario would have gotten a higher score if not for the lift police. I don’t disagree with the judges and Shannon’s hips (she has none, lucky beyotch), but the words exchanged with Bruno were quite harsh – the look of utter shock on Shannon’s face was hard to look at and that shock is a likely catalyst for what comes later…but more on that later.

- Week 7 – This is the week where everyone has one good dance and one not so good dance. And that pretty much sums it up. I would say there’s a trend between this season and Season 5, but it can likely be chalked up to the first week with two whole dances. The only scoring that impressed me as off (other than Marissa) was Jason. As much as I loved him, I thought he was slightly overscored in his quickstep. I just don’t get the love affair they have with Marissa. I mean, she’s not a “bad” dancer, but I don’t think she’s always worthy of the scores she gets. I think she might be getting the “personality” score.

- Week 8 – A week later than Season 5, we hear the old mantra of “that was good, but not quite good enough for heading into the semi-finals. Marissa got it, as did Jason on his second dance. Christian did not get the talk, he actually got raves and this was the week after he tore his tendon in his arm. He actually did very well, but I thought that he was not as good as Mario who was scored lower. Kristi got her usual raves although she and Mario both got some flack for their second dances. Kristi because her Samba was “awkward and out of control” – and I absolutely agreed with that assessment. WAY too much stuff in that dance. Mario’s feet were apparently bad or “rough” – but still, better than Christian. While I agreed with Jason’s critiques, there is no way he was 3 points behind Kristi in the second dance. As for Marissa, she is far below the other dancers in terms of quality.

- Week 9 – Marissa gets a break (a little) on the scores, much like the semi-final ease up in Season 5. She still gets a good bit of criticism (lack of body content in hold, missed leap on the run), including the “It’s not a semi-final dance” for the second one. But her quickstep was pretty good, so I can see the improvement in score. On the other hand, Kristi, Christian and Jason all get basically rave reviews with minor critiques thrown in. Kristi got the “too hectic” from Len on her Tango (agreed) and the “hair out of sync” from Carrie Ann on her Jive (agreed) – which was really Mark out dancing her a bit, like he has a tendency to do with all his partners on Jive. Christian was “occasionally flatfooted” on his Viennese Waltz. I take it back, Jason was not critiqued at all and in my notes I have the words “slightly over rated” for his Paso Doble. That’s okay, because I have “underscored” next to his Foxtrot. :-)

This is a random note, but I noticed that Marissa got harder dances, while Kristi got dances that were perfect for her. The dances on this night were determined by “random draw” and I always wonder about those and if they are REALLY random. At the end of the night I also felt that Jason out danced Kristi, even though she beat him by two points.

- Week 10 – Jason and Christian are pretty much left in Kristi’s dust. She is the most consistent and technically superior of the three so that’s no big thing. Not much point in discussing the scoring, although I will say that Christian’s injury does catch up with him – I didn’t get the feeling there was underscoring going on to prop up Kristi. As for Jason – the Cha Cha was clearly not his dance, especially not in a “cha cha challenge” where they all dance to the same song one after the other. Not that Kristi needed propping. I predicted as soon as her name was announced that she would win. She’s *Kristi Yamaguchi* after all.

Season 6 Summary – On finale night, Christian is announced as 3rd place before there is anymore dancing. After that, both Kristi and Jason are given perfect 30’s – pretty safe, since Kristi is still 9 points ahead. I didn’t note whether I found Jason’s score to be valid or not, since it really didn’t matter at that point. No one is going to over come a 9 point lead against Kristi. That’s not to say the scores weren’t valid – they were. I had very few problems with how this season went down. No real surprises. No shocks. They did make a point, from time to time of saying that a dance wasn’t up to par for a given point in the season – which is how it should be.

Random Observations:

  • Christian and Jason’s bromance is the sweetest thing about this season.
  • Kristi wasn’t the phenom that I remember her to be. She’s very, VERY good, but I actually enjoyed Christian and Jason more, from an entertainment standpoint.
  • Week 8 this season was the first non-bottom 2 reveal.  I’m waiting to see what season they do away with it altogether and if it becomes obvious WHY they do it.
  • Len did his Master Class with the remaining couples in Week 9 – I had forgotten how hilarious he can be. This one ends with him in a limo with Kym. :-)
  • Mark DIDN’T have polka dots in Kristi’s 1st Jive costume other than her hair bow – yes, you know this is remarkable if you’ve been paying attention. He did succumb to the polka dots for their jive in the semis.
  • Derek hurts his neck, then gets food poisoning, then has a meltdown with Shannon the confessional – who was saying he’s never been challenged?? :-) Anyway, the meltdown – they apologized over and over and over and both seemed to regret it. Somehow, that got lost in the discussions of the subject well after the fact.
  • This season had one of the great Pro Dances that seem to have faded away in the seasons since.
  • February 27, 2011 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? 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!