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

I don’t know about you guys, but I’m just ready for the cast announcement so we can get all of this speculating over & done with! But to help us get a handle on who might be in and out, let’s take a look at what combination of “casting types” we might get this season.

The Olympian

Previous examples: Kristi Yamaguchi, Shawn Johnson, Apolo Ohno, Natalie Coughlin, Misty May-Treanor, Maurice Greene, Louie Vito, Evan Lysacek, Hope Solo

Advantages: The winningest of the 12 types, their obvious advantage is their athleticism – you won’t see these guys struggling with strength or endurance moves.  In addition, the same tireless work ethic that helped them medal in the Olympics will likely carry them through the toils of the competition. They also seem to be adored by the masses, as many are seen as “hero” figures – which translates into a formidable voting fanbase.

Disadvantages: For those specializing in sports that are less “artistic” (i.e. swimming, running, volleyball), it might be a bit hard to really get into the character of the dance and truly perform to the crowd.  Previously incurred injuries (or the fear of incurring an injury that might hinder their participation in subsequent competitions in their sport, a la Misty May-Treanor) may also slow them down & limit their mobility.

Possible candidates this season: The only semi-legitmate Olympian prospect I think we’ve heard is Bruce Jenner – and I would like to think that TPTB would have mercy and not subject us to back-to-back seasons of Kardashians in the audience :-D

The Athlete

Previous examples: Chuck Liddell, Warren Sapp, Emmitt Smith, Michael Irvin, Helio Castroneves, Laila Ali, Floyd Mayweather, Ty Murray, Evander Holyfield, Jerry Rice, Clyde Drexler, Monica Seles, Jason Taylor, Lawrence Taylor, Chad Ochocinco, Kurt Warner, Rick Fox, Sugar Ray Leonard, Chris Jericho, Hines Ward, Ron Artest

Advantages: As with the Olympians, their athleticism & work ethic make them well-suited to the competition.  An edge they might have over their Olympic counterparts: sports like football, auto racing, & mixed martial arts tend to have a larger, more mainstream following than some of the Olympic sports.

Disadvantages: Again, a lack of “artistic” experience & previous injury (especially with the football players, who have really taken a beating over the years). Some of the more muscular athletes in hard-hitting sports may also have difficulty with the refined, precise moves of some of the dances.

Possible candidates this season: Vince Young tweeted that he had been asked to the do the show, then suspiciously deleted the tweet.  Guilty much? ;-) We’ve also heard Annika Sorenstam’s name in the mix.

Read more..

February 26, 2012 I Written By

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

PureDWTS Exclusive! An Interview with Randall Christensen, Part I

A few months back, we asked you guys to submit questions for Randall Christensen, the costume designer for DWTS from seasons 2-12.  Well now that the holidays are over and we’re starting to get back into the swing of things, we’re sharing Randall’s responses :-)

We’ve been lucky to get a chance to chat with Randall, since he has kept very busy since moving on from DWTS! He’s currently working a couture swimwear line with MiracleSuit (check out Vogue’s post on the Macy’s MiracleSuit fashion show last summer!), is working on a sportswear/ready to wear collection, and is still designing dancesport costumes for Randall Designs, Inc., his costume design company for the past 30 years.  Let’s see what this dancewear icon has to say in response to some of your burning questions :-)

At what age did you start designing?

Randall Christensen: I started designing for my professional partner and students back in the early ‘80’s, learning the craft with “hands on” experience.  I am self-taught.

Who were your mentors?

RC: My first mentor (and still most influential) was Bob Mackie.  He was designing for Carol Burnett as well as Cher for their (respective) shows.  I was a pre-teen and tried to NEVER miss a single one of their shows, as I was mesmerized by their costumes!

Seems like things at DWTS run on a pretty hectic timetable. Can you descibe what a typical week was like for you at DWTS?

RC: A typical week at DWTS starts new on Monday/Tuesday with new designs for each couple.  If we are lucky enough to get the music by Monday (instead of typically Tuesday) I try to get the couples up to the wardrobe department to discuss concepts for the next week’s costumes.  I only get 15-20 (30 mins. tops) to listen to the music, research ideas, discuss, design and finalize.  Then the entire show is shopped Wednesday by 5pm and delivered back to the studio, where I go over every women’s design with our cutter/fitter (the mens’ costumes are done off site, by our dance tailor in downtown Los Angeles).  The costumes are cut/sewn/preliminarily fitted on Thursday, then I have celebrity fittings all day Friday. My assistant helps on Saturday with the professional women’s fittings, they’re altered and ready for the final fitting on Sunday, after the couples do their blocking for the camera.  Adjustments are made and then are trimmed, beaded, crystallized and trimmed out to completion.  Monday morning is time to review each costume before setting them in the individual dressing rooms.  We have dress rehearsal only a few hours before we go LIVE on the east coast.  During that time any last minute adjustments are made and redelivered to the couples’ dressing rooms, sometimes just minutes before they’re to go to the top of the stairs for their walk down – live!  We have to design/shop/fit/finish each and every costume in 3.5 to 4 days!!  Whew!

What types of fabrics are the best for ballroom costumes?

RC: Thank goodness for stretch fabrics, jerseys, lycras, etc.!  These help the costume to be quite comfortable as well as flexible.  We can then get a terrific fit with little to no wrinkles in the fabric.  Chiffon (both silk and polyester) are great for the ballgown skirts, due to the wonderful movement.  Charmeuse satin is a terrific vintage type fabric, reminiscent of some of Ginger Rogers’ gowns.

Are there limitations, or can you work with pretty much anything?

RC: I push the limits every chance I get!  How else can you continue to come up with fresh ideas?  That being said, some fabrics are VERY challenging!  I try not to use brocades, as they are just to stiff and unforgiving for costumes.  Not to mention the fact that they do not flow at all!  I love using natural trims, for an organic vibe, still mixing in crystal rhinestones of course.  We have to have a sparkle on almost everything.

What is the most extravagant costume you’ve ever designed for the show, and who wore it?

RC: I would say the most extravagant costume would have to be Toni Braxton’s Marie Antoinette-inspired Viennese Waltz gown (complete with powdered blonde wig and all).  To be as authentic as possible, we went to a costume house and purchased a “cage” to make the silhouette as close to the look of the era as possible.  It was almost all completely sewn by hand, on the dress form as there is no way to get that wide cage (for the hips) on the sewing machine to work on.  Quite labor intense, but what a gorgeous look!  And still, we did it in just under 4 days……I still break out in a sweat thinking about that one!

*photo courtesy ABC/Kelsey McNeal

If you could only pick one DWTS costume as your “all-time favorite”, which would it be and why?

RC: Besides Toni Braxton’s Marie Antoinette gown, I would have to say Joanna Krupa’s “Futuristic Paso Doble.”  We pushed the limits (again) of what we could do in just 4 days.  The silver silk lame with electric lights (all wired into the dress) was sensational, but a nightmare to get done in such a short time.  We had a lighting specialist up from San Diego for 3 days just wiring the darn thing.

*photo courtesy of ABC

Everyone has regrets. Have you ever looked back at a costume you’ve designed for the show and thought “What was I thinking???” If so, which one & why?

RC: Oh, I’m sure we ALL have regrets, but I have to say, we have a really good track record if you consider that from concept to completion is 4 days maximum.  The discipline the couple has to have to stick with the original design, in spite of choreographing after the design is done, a procedure which is completely backwards! That being said, each and every week I look at the costumes, making mental notes as to what we could have done better, or what I would have done differently.  The beauty is I get another chance 4 days later.

Who have been your favorite celebs and/or pros to design for, and why?

RC: I count myself quite lucky to have such a great rapport with the pro dancers, and we have such fun with (and trust in) each other.  Our design sessions are quite intense and rewarding. I have enjoyed the trust that almost all of the celebrities have shown to me.  I honestly think that they put their trust in me (and their pro partner) due mainly to the fact that they are in such a foreign and vulnerable area.  They have not danced like this before, and really have to rely on our experience and expertise.  The trust that Susan Lucci, Jennifer Gray, Florence Henderson, Chelsea Kane and Kirstie Alley (to name a few) showed me was quite humbling and really rewarding!  This definitely impacts how wonderful their costumes showed on them.

Do you have an all-time favorite? 

RC:  I would have to say that as far as professional dancers, Edyta Sliwinska made ME look good!  I wish I could take credit for her beauty, but she came that way!!  That being said, I have to admit that Edyta was remarkably prepared each week, knew what looked good on her, and above all else, she left me to interpret her ideas and trusted me completely.  What a dream lady to work with!  Toni Braxton and Brandy both were appreciative, trusting and so lovely to design for.

What happens to the costumes after they’ve been worn?

RC: The celebrities have the option of purchasing any of their costumes, once the season is over.  Kristi Yamaguchi and Shawn Johnson purchased all of their costumes, along with several celebs. buying their favorite one(s).  We keep a great majority of the costumes from past seasons in a storage facility quite close to the studio.  We also keep a few on hand right in the workroom, in case we need a last minute “fix.”  We have NEVER had to use one of those yet!

We’ve noticed some get reused and others don’t. How do you decide which ones get reused?

RC: We reuse costumes based on the producers’ requirements/suggestions, as well as our guest choreographers’ ideas.  Many times (most of the time) we re-work them so that their silhouettes more readily coordinate with each of the other dancers’ looks, for a more cohesive themed look. There is just not enough hours in the week to make ALL the costumes seen on Monday’s and Tuesday’s shows.  That said, we ALWAYS make something new for our couples for Monday’s show.  The pro numbers and (pro) group numbers may get previously worn costumes, but NEVER on celebs nor their partners for Monday’s competition!

*photo courtesy ABC/Adam Larkey

Do certain pros want specific kinds of alterations (i.e. shorter hems, lower necklines, mesh inserts, etc) on costumes that have been worn before by someone else?

RC: Again, it’s all about the overall theme/silhouette desired.  Our pro dancers do have their specific preferences, and if we could accommodate them, we most certainly would.  Some of those preferences are just going to be kept secret – no use spoiling the illusion……

Tune in later this week when we reveal part II of our exclusive interview…and Randall talks theme nights, panic attacks, and his love of princess seams (?) ;-) You won’t want to miss it!!!

January 9, 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!

DWTS13 Search Engine Round-Up – Week of 9-16-11

 How ’bout a brief little pre-show round-up, eh? :-)

Val Chmerkovskiy

This was the 2nd most searched term leading to PureDWTS the past 2 weeks, second only to “pure dwts”. Rumor has it Vogue has a post in the works profiling him…so stay tuned ;-) In the meantime, you can catch Tristan & Peta’s profiles, if you missed them. 

Len Goodman who do you think you are

I’m not Len, but I’d venture a guess he’d answer with “Len f*cking Goodman, bitches.” I’m kidding…sort of ;-) But for those of you unfamiliar, Who Do You Think You Are? is actually a pretty cool television show that helps celebrities trace their lineage and learn about their ancestors.  Len is actually featured on the current season of the UK version, and his episode (which airs on October 5 on BBC) shows him learning about his great-great grandfather, Wincenty Sosnowski, who was from Poland and actually fought in the anti-tsarist November Uprising and was subsequently awarded with the highest Polish military honor for his heroism.  Vogue did a brief teaser post back in March about Len’s appearance on the show.  If you get a chance, I highly recommend trying to catch the American version of the show, which airs on Friday nights on NBC – the bf and I caught a re-run of Lionel Ritchie episode the other night and were downright fascinated.  So fascinated, in fact, that we started researching our own heritage – and I came to find out that my maternal great-grandmother was one of the first female pharmacists in the state of Indiana, and I’m actually 1/64 Trinidadian :-) Pretty cool, if you ask me.  

Is Lacey Schwimmer coming back to DWTS?

Ummmm yep, I’d say so…since she’s paired with Chaz & all.  But there was some question about whether she’d take a season off to “focus on her music career” *snicker*, so I guess it’s a valid question. 

Dancing with the Stars not practicing

My spidey sense tells me that 2 male celebs this season seem to have an aversion to practicing…and coincidentally, their names are only one letter apart…

Why is Louis/Louise Van Amstel not on season 13?

Because he’s pocket-sized and they couldn’t get Thumbelina or Thelma to sign on this season. 

Are Derek Hough & Cheryl Burke dating?

No. Wrong Cheryl.  Try Cole. And a loose definition of “dating”. 

Did Mark Ballas win an Emmy?/Is Mark Ballas growing his hair back?

No./It appears so.  See Vogue’s Emmy post for further detail. 

Susan Lucci naked

Ummm….gross.

 

September 17, 2011 I Written By

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

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

It’s that time of year, again – time to take all the wacky rumors and all the wacky casting patterns we see from season to season and hypothesize who we might actually get to see :-) This year is interesting, in that we already definitely know one of the celebs, are fairly certain about two others, and have got definite suspicions about another two – almost takes a bit of fun out of the guessing, no? :-) But I’m sure there will be at least one celeb who’s name we haven’t heard – and at least one we’ve never heard of, too…thankfully, even unpredictability becomes predictable after awhile! But let’s get it on with it, shall we? Oh, and if you’re feeling nostalgic (and want to see how effective using these cast types as a template can be), check out the typecasting of season 10, season 11, and season 12 :-)

The Olympian

Previous examples: Kristi Yamaguchi, Shawn Johnson, Apolo Ohno, Natalie Coughlin, Misty May-Treanor, Maurice Greene, Louie Vito, Evan Lysacek

Advantages: The winningest of the 12 types, their obvious advantage is their athleticism – you won’t see these guys struggling with strength or endurance moves.  In addition, the same tireless work ethic that helped them medal in the Olympics will likely carry them through the toils of the competition. They also seem to be adored by the masses, as many are seen as “hero” figures – which translates into a formidable voting fanbase.

Disadvantages: For those specializing in sports that are less “artistic” (i.e. swimming, running, volleyball), it might be a bit hard to really get into the character of the dance and truly perform to the crowd.  Previously incurred injuries (or the fear of incurring an injury that might hinder their participation in subsequent competitions in their sport, a la Misty May-Treanor) may also slow them down & limit their mobility. Read more..

August 26, 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 3

Okay, folks, it’s been a while but here is part three in my series about the History of Judges scoring. As you may recall, from Part I and Part II, this series got started in response to the judges over-scoring of Bristol Palin in Season 11. The question was – were the judges always like this? Did they always over score some (young) people while underscoring true condenders? Have they always tried to make it into a horse race? It has also morphed into trying to also answer the question “have they always been extremely nasty (see Michael Bolton) to some, seemingly without reason??” Season 12’s example was Ralph Machio – their displays were often disgusting. But more on that another time. This post is looking back on the judging of Season 7.  I think you might find a couple of very interesting things happened in this season that may have been a harbinger of things to come – but we can’t be sure until we also watch subsequent seasons. :-)  One thing I can say – I did NOT see as much commentary about “we are going into the semi-finals and this isn’t good enough” as we did in Season 5, but the scoring still seemed reasonable and not over the top.

Here were the scores from Week 5, onward:

Season 7 Weekly Scores (Part I)

Celebrity Week 5 Week 6 Week 7 Week 8
Brooke 29 (Jitterbug) 26 (Rumba) 30 (Foxtrot) 28 (Tango)
29 (Team Tango) 27 (Mambo)
Warren 25 (Hustle) 25 (Rumba) 21 (Foxtrot) 28 (Tango)
29 (Team Tango) 26 (Jive)
Lance 21 (WC Swing) 27 (Jive) 25 (Rumba) 26 (Foxtrot)
20 (Team Cha Cha) 24 (Samba)
Cody 28 (Jitterbug) 23 (Samba) 22 (V. Waltz) 24 (Foxtrot)
20 (Team Cha Cha) 24 (Mambo)
Maurice 27 (Salsa) 21 (V. Waltz) 25 (Cha Cha) 24 (Quickstep)
29 (Team Tango) 24 (Paso Doble)
Susan 22 (Hustle) 23 (Mambo) 24 (Paso Doble)
20 (Team Cha Cha)
Cloris 21 (Salsa) 15 (Cha Cha)
Toni 22 (WC Swing)

Season 7 Weekly Scores (Part II)

Celebrity Week 9 Week 10 Week Finale
Brooke 21 (Jive) 28 (Samba) 30 (V. Waltz)
28 (Salsa) 30 (Freestyle)
Warren 24 (Mambo) 25 (Samba) 27 (Hustle)
25 (Jitterbug) 28 (Freestyle)
Lance 28 (Mambo) 26 (Samba) 28 (Jitterbug)
29 (Jitterbug) 27 (Freestyle)

Week 5 – What is significant this week is that they really took Lacey to the woodshed, with comments similar to “we know you’re a pro at West Coast Swing, you need to feature your partner”. Lacey said she wasn’t upset, but I think she was ready to cry. While the judges were a bit over the top, I didn’t think it was too extreme – mainly it’s hard to watch a pro get raked, even if they deserve it. Really, this week the judges were critical of Toni and Susan in a way that was reasonable, and slightly overscored Cody – but not in a huge way. Mainly because I think Julianne overdanced him a bit and didn’t get called on it. But their Jitterbug was very good, regardless. But then I remember at the time thinking that Brooke was also overscored a bit, maybe by a point. That said – who’s to know, we’re talking Jitterbug here. Also overscored? Maurice – I don’t think Maurice ever did a “27” dance while on the show, but they scored him on improvement.

Week 6 – This is the week of Michael Flatley as guest judge and just about everything was out of wack. Michael seemed to be scoring with the wrong part of his anatomy, and Carrie Ann was having…well, at the risk of being sexist – PMS. So, she raves over Susan (who always dances like a china doll), then she kinda harshes on Cloris saying “We lost Toni for this?” Okay, so Cloris is insane and can’t dance –but take it up with the voters, sweetheart . Not to mention the judges gave her a 21 the previous week!! Then Carrie Ann turns around and is a bit over the top (perhaps to compensate for Michael Flately) on Brooke’s Rumba. No, it wasn’t Brooke’s best dance but she acts like it’s a disaster – then gives her an *8*! Crack is wack. Michael gives her a 10 which even Derek is stunned by. I think the 8 score was actually fine, it’s just CAI’s comments that were really out of line with how she actually scored it. My other gripe was Warren – this was a week where he really didn’t seem to do much dancing, and made some mistakes the judges called him on, but still got a 25 – which would have put him ahead of Brooke if not for Michael’s 10.  It’s weeks like this one (which had been rare up to this point) where you really wonder what is going on in the judges brains.  Can you seriously give a contestant a 21 and then be pissed when they’re still there the following week and do a crappy dance?? Try using the right paddles, sweetie.

Week 7 – Again, the judges rave over Susan for a dance that was weak, not sharp or aggressive and boring. They’re on crack again. All three of them. On the other hand, they pretty much crucify Warren – not sure that I agree with that. Cody also did a better dance than Susan to my eye and they were actually rather harsh on him, saying he was plodding, or like a “fledgling bird that can’t take off”. This is also the week that Len goes insane over Lance being barefoot, although he still ended up with a 25, and Lacey smarts off to the judges. I thought they underscored Cody and overscored Susan. The rest of the scores I rather agreed with, for the most part. This was also the week of the Team Cha Cha and Team Paso – the first season of Team dances – and Team Paso lead by Derek was miles ahead of team Cha Cha to an embarrassing degree. Of course, they learned that it’s not really fair to put a Paso against a Cha Cha and Len acknowledged that. IMO, Team Paso’s team dance is the best team dance to date.

Week 8 – Remember when Len went insane and called Brooke’s Tango not up to a professional level, essentially judging her as a professional because CAI said she was getting that good the week before? That was this week. I have to wonder if this is the start of the purposely underscoring the frontrunner to make it look like a more even contest, because this was crazy. HE was crazy Of course, he gives Brooke an 8, and a few minutes later gives Maurice an 8 and Cody an 8….sure, that’s logical. Not. Not that Maurice and Cody were overscored, but that Brooke was purposely underscored. The rest of the scoring is pretty on target, although you start to notice that Warren is getting great scores but not getting the footwork – and they call him on it then give him great scores anyway.  Charm goes a long way and people loved him – don’t want to lose that!

Week 9 – This is an example of how the last third of a dance being totally screwed up affects the view of an entire performance. I remember Brooke’s Jive being a disaster. But when I watched it for this post, it really didn’t become bad until the last third. The judges comment on technique going down the toilet – but I think she just forgot the steps. Hence, no technique. What really bothered me though, was what appeared to be some very poor sportsmanship in the background while they were talking to Brooke. Gee, who on this show would be a poor sport?? Anyway, CAI gets all hoity toity about a deliberate lift and Derek’s saying something to Brooke about some style, blah blah – watch the background.

Anyway, after that, everyone gets hosed in the first round except Lance, and I pretty much agree, over all, with all of it. Second round everyone does much better and my only complaint, again, is Warren. No technique but pretty decent scores. Round two, Brooke comes roaring back, and Cody gets pretty critical comments again. Warren, on the other hand, gets great comments but only an average score.  Lance gets rave reviews.  I agree with all of this, including Lance ending up in first place at the end of the night.  I mention Cody’s critical comments because this is one of our metrics – do the youngsters get treated easier than their older competition. I would say no, in Cody’s case.

Week 10 – Ah, the finale, when the judges are pretty easy on everyone. :-)  They pretty much are easy, although they continue to comment on Warren’s lack of technique but infectious joy. He’s the Marissa of Season7. :-) They got as close as realistically possible to throwing it to the voters as they could while still maintaining credibility. I mean, Warren did have bad footwork, and Brooke was a step or two above the men in technique…and Lance’s freestyle could have been a lot better.  The only critical comments handed out go to Lance for that freestyle.  So, if you have a chance, watch the Season 7 freestyles on YouTube and we’ll continue to debate the age old question – does a bad freestyle cost you the competition? Think about the 3 points Lance could have gained had he done a better freestyle – it could have been a game changer. Would he have won? Probably not – he couldn’t beat Warren and they were essentially tied. The best it probably would have done is MAYBE handing him second place.

So, is this the season where the judges go all crazy and start getting fame hungry and mean to dancers?? I have to wonder. Could Cloris’ lengthy stay have made them snap, as seen by CAI’s attitude in week 6? And did they realize that if Brooke kept scoring well above everyone else the drama would be done (these observations coincide with the birth of “in jeopardy!), so they under score her and over scored others?? I guess we’ll see when I get around to the next installment.  I think we can safely say that they don’t overscore all young dancers. I thought there were a few occasions where they underscored Cody. I also think that, barring that one week where Len was insane and the week when Michael Flatley too Len’s place, Brooke was fairly scored the whole way. Overall, I didn’t have too much of a gripe with this season – all complaints were relatively minor. On to Season 8!! Can’t guarantee I’ll get to it before the hard work of Season 13 REALLY begins (really, it began a couple weeks ago). :-)

 
Notes: Week 5 had a real bottom 2. But there was no bottom 2 revealed in week 6. In week 7, we have “jeopardy!”. I think this was a relatively new concept at this point.

Ever notice how Mark always manages to make it back on the results shows with his partners?? I don’t think anyone else has ever managed it to the degree he does. Well, good for him, I guess.

Brooke only went last once (but it was before a team dance) and never had the encore (that wasn’t a team dance). Warren, on the other hand, went last Four times and had the encore 2 times. Lance had one encore. As we’ve often discussed on this site, running order is pretty important, as are encores – that Brooke managed to win with little to no pimpage is pretty amazing.

For those paying attention to me and Courtney griping in recent seasons about random ass dances and no pattern, this is for you.  Back in the day, it WAS reasonable and was easier to compare dancers. TWO dances per week for the first 4 weeks. Four dances in Week 5.  I vote we go back to this very sensible formula. Here’s the dance schedule, from Wikipedia:

 

 

August 16, 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. :-)

DWTS Season 12 Casting Rumors – The Typecasting of Season 12, Part I

Whenever the time comes to start speculating about the next season’s cast, one useful “tool” we all seem to use is the patterns in typecasting over the seasons – we know there will likely be at least 1 athlete, perhaps a reality TV star, a singer or two, etc.  But when you REALLY take a good look at the casting “types” over the seasons, it becomes clear that each season has been a carefully-crafted combination of celebs to appeal almost every demographic…and I think we’ve cracked that code :-)

Prior to the cast announcements, I’ve done a typecasting analysis for both season 10 and season 11, and both casts have fulfilled almost every subtype (with some celebs fulfilling more than one “type”).  So why not take a look at the casting rumors for season 12 and see which might fit into the casting equation, shall we? :-)

The Olympian

Previous examples: Kristi Yamaguchi, Shawn Johnson, Apolo Ohno, Natalie Coughlin, Misty May-Treanor, Maurice Greene, Louie Vito, Evan Lysacek

Advantages: The winningest of the 12 types, their obvious advantage is their athleticism – you won’t see these guys struggling with strength or endurance moves.  In addition, the same tireless work ethic that helped them medal in the Olympics will likely carry them through the toils of the competition. They also seem to be adored by the masses, as many are seen as “hero” figures – which translates into a formidable voting fanbase.

Disadvantages: For those specializing in sports that are less “artistic” (i.e. swimming, running, volleyball), it might be a bit hard to really get into the character of the dance and truly perform to the crowd.  Previously incurred injuries (or the fear of incurring an injury that might hinder their participation in subsequent competitions in their sport, a la Misty May-Treanor) may also slow them down & limit their mobility.

Possible candidates this season: Since we didn’t get an Olympian last season, I can almost guarantee we’ll get one this season – and the most likely candidate seems to be Nastia Liukin, who has been a rumor for a few seasons now and has started following Mark on Twitter within the past few days.  Other possibilities: Greg Louganis, who seems to have been trying for several seasons now to get onto the show; and while it may be a long-shot, Johnny Weir fans are still campaigning for a “Team Weirnoff” partnership.

The Athlete

Previous examples: Chuck Liddell, Warren Sapp, Emmitt Smith, Michael Irvin, Helio Castroneves, Laila Ali, Floyd Mayweather, Ty Murray, Evander Holyfield, Jerry Rice, Clyde Drexler, Monica Seles, Jason Taylor, Lawrence Taylor, Chad Ochocinco, Kurt Warner, Rick Fox

Advantages: As with the Olympians, their athleticism & work ethic make them well-suited to the competition.  An edge they might have over their Olympic counterparts: sports like football, auto racing, & mixed martial arts tend to have a larger, more mainstream following than some of the Olympic sports.

Disadvantages: Again, a lack of “artistic” experience & previous injury (especially with the football players, who have really taken a beating over the years). Some of the more muscular athletes in hard-hitting sports may also have difficulty with the refined, precise moves of some of the dances.

Possible candidates this season: This category has been oddly devoid of really “solid” possibilities this season, aside from the Brett Favre debacle – doubtful, but stranger things have happened on the show! Chris Jericho was also kicked around as a possibility again this season, and it looks like WWE Diva Maria Kanellis is still gunning for a spot on the show.

The Model/Playmate/Beauty Queen

Previous examples: Kelly Monaco, Rachel Hunter, Tia Carrere, Shanna Moakler, Paulina Porizkova, Shandi Finnessey, Josie Maran, Albert Reed, Shannon Elizabeth, Brooke Burke, Holly Madison, Kathy Ireland, Joanna Krupa, Pam Anderson

Advantages: All the costumes seem to look fantastic on them (and they can get away with wearing the really skimpy ones) and so do their pro partners – easy to imagine a “showmance”, which always seems to grab votes.  Also seems to have cornered the votes of the small population of male viewers, for obvious reasons

Disadvantages: Despite making a career out of looking great posing & strutting down the runway, many of them have proven to be rather awkward movers outside of that context, and some seem to have a hard time carrying around their taller than average stature.  They also run the risk of getting lost in the shuffle among attractive male competitors, who seem to draw in more votes from the predominantly-female viewing population.

Possible candidates this season: A strong possibility seems to be Kendra Wilkinson, who would be following in the footsteps of her Girls Next Door co-star Holly Madison.  Rumored contestant Lee Meriwether is also a former Miss America.

The Legend

Previous examples: Cloris Leachman, Wayne Newton, Donny Osmond, Tatum O’Neal, Marie Osmond, Jane Seymour, Marlee Matlin, Susan Lucci, Florence Henderson

Advantages: These individuals are extremely well-known & respected in the entertainment business, with many years of experience (and fans) under their belts, as well as an award or two. Also masters of the stage & screen – perhaps the best at emulating the emotions of the dances.

Disadvantages: With many years of experience comes an older age than many of their competitors – which comes with an increased risk of injury & fatigue that could limit the difficulty of their routines.

Possible candidates this season: We’ve got two ladies with quite a sterling reputation in show business – Faye Dunaway & Lee Meriwether. One was the original “Bonnie”  of Bonnie & Clyde; the other was the original Catwoman.  Who do you think we’ll get? :-)

The Soap Star

Previous examples: Kelly Monaco, Cameron Mathison, Lisa Rinna, Susan Lucci, Aiden Turner

Advantages: The demographic of soap opera viewers overlaps heavily with the demographic of viewers of DWTS, and most soap opera viewers have been watching those shows for years (I started watching General Hospital when I was 6!), so they often have a fierce loyalty to their favorite characters (and the actors/actresses who portray them).

Disadvantages: This group likely has the most grueling schedule to contend with, as most soaps tape year-round, and some of them are taped in New York, forcing the stars (and sometimes their partners) to fly coast-to-coast several times a week to practice.  Many also have absolutely no background in any kind of sport, making them a real “project” for the pros to take on.

Possible candidates this season: The lovely Lee Meriwether could do triple duty this season, by fulfilling this category by virtue of her role of Ruth Martin on All My Children. From the online voting for this season’s cast, it looks like Colleen Zenk & Crystal Chappell are also big favorites.

The Comedian

Previous examples: Penn Jillette, Jeff Ross, Adam Carolla, David Allen Grier, Ashley Hamilton, Niecy Nash, Margaret Cho

Advantages: Let’s face it, they’re fun to watch, and they definitely inject some much- needed hilarity into the show. 

Disadvantages: They often come across like they don’t take the competition seriously, instead favoring their usual schtick over actual dancing. Some of their on-show humor (Jeff Ross’ in particular) can also be rather polarizing – hilarious to some, offensive to others. And again – often no background in any sort of sport, let alone dancing.

Possible candidates this season: None that we’ve heard of…but who would you like to see? I’m holding out for a member of the Blue Collar Comedy Tour to sign on – Ron White would be a hoot!

So do you guys think I’m onto something with this season’s rumors? Tune in for my next installment, where I dissect just who we might get this season from the teen idol, host, actor, reality star, singer, & wild card categories!

February 27, 2011 I Written By

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

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

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

September 19, 2010 I Written By

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

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

Prior to the cast announcement last season, some of you may remember me analyzing the typecasting of DWTS – basically, the patterns in celeb casting over the seasons which can help us to predict who we might see each season.  Interesting to note – last season’s cast fulfilled all 12 of my types (counting Nicole as both a “Teen Idol” and a “Singer”).  So why not examine those types again and see what we might get for this season? ;-)

The Olympian

Previous examples: Kristi Yamaguchi, Shawn Johnson, Apolo Ohno, Natalie Coughlin, Misty May-Treanor, Maurice Greene, Louie Vito, Evan Lysacek

Advantages: The winningest of the 12 types, their obvious advantage is their athleticism – you won’t see these guys struggling with strength or endurance moves.  In addition, the same tireless work ethic that helped them medal in the Olympics will likely carry them through the toils of the competition.

Disadvantages: For those specializing in sports that are less “artistic” (i.e. swimming, running, volleyball), it might be a bit hard to really get into the character of the dance and truly perform to the crowd.  Previously incurred injuries (or the fear of incurring an injury that might hinder their participation in subsequent competitions in their sport, a la Misty May-Treanor) may also slow them down & limit their mobility.

Possible candidates this season: Johnny Weir fans (including Karina Smirnoff) have been tweeting like crazy trying to get him cast this season, but I don’t see them succeeding.  I see more possibilities with swimmer Greg Louganis, who has been trying to get on the show for several seasons now, or gymnast Nastia Liukin – a teammate of Shawn Johnson’s & an alleged former flame of Lysacek.

The Athlete

Previous examples: Chuck Liddell, Warren Sapp, Emmitt Smith, Michael Irvin, Helio Castroneves, Laila Ali, Floyd Mayweather, Ty Murray, Evander Holyfield, Jerry Rice, Clyde Drexler, Monica Seles, Jason Taylor, Lawrence Taylor, Chad Ochocinco

Advantages: As with the Olympians, their athleticism & work ethic make them well-suited to the competition.  An edge they might have over their Olympic counterparts: sports like football, auto racing, & mixed martial arts tend to have a larger, more mainstream following than some of the Olympic sports.

Disadvantages: Again, a lack of “artistic” experience & previous injury (especially with the football players, who have really taken a beating over the years). Some of the more muscular athletes in hard-hitting sports may also have difficulty with the refined, precise moves of some of the dances.

Possible candidates this season: At this point, the numerous (reputable) news outlets reporting that Kurt Warner is going to be on season 11, along with Kurt’s own coy dodging of questions regarding his participation, make him almost a lock for this season in my eyes.   Don’t see a whole lot of hope for wrestler Shelley Martinez. Landon Donovan is a toss-up for me – maybe, maybe not. We here at Pure DWTS would love to see a representative from a more unique sport – such as jockey Chantal SutherlandTroy Aikmen – nice try, but we’re pretty sure you’re just joshin’ us ;-)

The Model/Playmate/Beauty Queen

Previous examples: Kelly Monaco, Rachel Hunter, Tia Carrere, Shanna Moakler, Paulina Porizkova, Shandi Finnessey, Josie Maran, Albert Reed, Shannon Elizabeth, Brooke Burke, Holly Madison, Kathy Ireland, Joanna Krupa, Pam Anderson

Advantages: All the costumes seem to look fantastic on them (and they can get away with wearing the really skimpy ones) and so do their pro partners – easy to imagine a “showmance”, which always seems to grab votes.  Also seems to have cornered the votes of the small population of male viewers, for obvious reasons ;-)

Disadvantages: Despite making a career out of looking great posing & strutting down the runway, many of them have proven to be rather awkward movers outside of that context, and some seem to have a hard time carrying around their taller than average stature.  They also run the risk of “pretty girl backlash” – the female viewers may turn on them due to jealousy or perceived arrogance, or just never vote for them in the first place, instead giving their votes to the attractive male participants.

Possible candidates this season: Rumors have been flying about UFC ring girl Arianny Celeste, and True Beauty contestant Amy Schmoldt has been hinting that she’d like to do the show.

The Legend

Previous examples: Cloris Leachman, Wayne Newton, Donny Osmond, Tatum O’Neal, Marie Osmond, Jane Seymour, Marlee Matlin, Susan Lucci

Advantages: These individuals are extremely well-known & respected in the entertainment business, with many years of experience (and fans) under their belts, as well as an award or two. Also masters of the stage & screen – perhaps the best at emulating the emotions of the dances.

Disadvantages: With many years of experience comes an older age than many of their competitors – which comes with an increased risk of injury & fatigue that could limit the difficulty of their routines.

Possible candidates this season: The Betty White rumor seems to be kaput, so that only leaves Ryan O’Neal, whose name we’ve heard only a few times as a possible contestant.

The Soap Star

Previous examples: Kelly Monaco, Cameron Mathison, Lisa Rinna, Susan Lucci, Aiden Turner

Advantages: The demographic of soap opera viewers overlaps heavily with the demographic of viewers of DWTS, and most soap opera viewers have been watching those shows for years (I started watching General Hospital when I was 6!), so they often have a fierce loyalty to their favorite characters (and the actors/actresses who portray them).

Disadvantages: This group likely has the most grueling schedule to contend with, as most soaps tape year-round, and some of them are taped in New York, forcing the stars (and sometimes their partners) to fly coast-to-coast several times a week to practice.  Many also have absolutely no background in any kind of sport, making them a real “project” for the pros to take on.

Possible candidates this season: The most likely is probably Nancy Lee Grahn, since she’s on an ABC soap.  Although I’d love to see Martha Byrne’s campaigners succeed in getting her on the show! As for the men – seems like the only name we’ve heard is Antonio Sabato Jr., and that really just seems more like wishful thinking on the part of his fans.

The Comedian

Previous examples: Penn Jillette, Jeff Ross, Adam Carolla, David Allen Grier, Ashley Hamilton, Niecy Nash

Advantages: Let’s face it, they’re fun to watch, and they definitely inject some much- needed hilarity into the show. 

Disadvantages: They often come across like they don’t take the competition seriously, instead favoring their usual schtick over actual dancing. Some of their on-show humor (Jeff Ross’ in particular) can also be rather polarizing – hilarious to some, offensive to others. And again – often no background in any sort of sport, let alone dancing.

Possible candidates this season: The only name we’ve heard is Heather McDonald, and we can’t even telling if she’s serious or kidding :-P

Tune in for part II, when I make my predictions for who we might see in the way of reality TV stars, teen idols, and much more!

August 25, 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!

The Do’s & Don’ts of Campaigning to Get Your Celeb on DWTS

Almost overnight, there has been a sudden surge in net “campaigns” to get certain celebs cast on season 11 of DWTS.  Fans of everyone from Johnny Weir to Martha Byrne to Antonio Sabato Jr. have taken to Facebook, Twitter, and various message boards & fan sites (including this one) in hopes of gaining support for their cause and catching the eye of the DWTS casting directors. 

Now while I definitely admire the enthusiasm & determination of some of the individuals behind these campaigns, I have to admit – some of them aren’t necessarily going about it the right way.  Now while I don’t consider myself an expert by any means on how to get your favorite celeb cast on a reality show (DWTS or otherwise), I do think there’s a certain strategy to it…a strategy I will outline below, which I call “The Do’s & Don’ts of Campaigning for DWTS”.

 But first and foremost, I feel as though I must share this:

 I DON’T THINK CAMPAIGNING REALLY WORKS FOR DWTS.

 Why? One, it has yet to work thus far; two, with DWTS getting its highest ratings yet this past season, the casting directors can afford to be picky and choosy about who they invite to do the show…meaning that lesser-known celebs (who had a better chance of being on one of the earlier seasons – and are more likely to be the ones having to campaign to get on this season) are less likely to be on the producers’ radar as part of a casting “wish list”.  Why would the “powers that be” go after little-known or washed-up actors, singers, athletes, and models when they can command big names like Donny Osmond, Susan Lucci, and Cloris Leachman? It’s also a matter of supply & demand: the less “available” a star appears to be due to a booming career, the more viewers will tune in to watch them, and the more “in demand” they will be.  In contrast, a star who hasn’t really done anything or seems to have been forgotten after years of inactivity will not pull as many viewers, and desperate campaigning will only reinforce their “availability”…making them less in demand.

That said, if I truly believed that campaigning worked for this show (and who knows, this season it actually might!), here’s some do’s and don’ts I would follow. 

 DO: Make sure your celeb actually wants to do the show.  Kind of a no-brainer – why toil away to try and get a celeb on the show, only to have them turn it down if they’re offered the chance? This is what unfortunately happened with the campaign to get Betty White on the show – a really strong, well-organized campaign was created, but it only lasted a few weeks before Betty publicly said that she wasn’t interested in doing the show.  This is one area where I give the folks campaigning for Johnny & Antonio props – those celebs are behind them 110%.

 DO: Do your homework about your celeb.  Find out everything you can about their career, personal life, hobbies, etc.  You never know what info could help you with your promotion of them.  You also want to know any of the less “savory” details of your celeb’s past (i.e. criminal records, known drug use, sex tapes – generally anything that would be considered “bad publicity”) so that you can come up with a strategy for downplaying them should these indiscretions be brought up as grounds for not having them on the show.

 DON’T: Get caught not knowing crucial details about your celeb. You need to be able to convince people that they’re worthy of being on the show.  If you can’t be bothered to actually care enough to know the details of their life & career, why should anyone else?

 DO: Come up with specific examples of why your celeb should be on the show.  What are they known for? Have they won any awards for it?  The latter is especially important – the show announces every celeb with a “tagline” (i.e. “Emmy award-winning soap actress Susan Lucci!” “Olympic Gold Medalist Evan Lysacek!” “Oscar winner Cloris Leachman!” “NFL Hall-of-Famer Michael Irvin!”), and the ones that make the biggest impression are the ones that have been recognized for their achievement in their particular area of expertise.  The producers LOVE a good, important-sounding tagline – it reinforces a particular celeb’s notability.  Not an award-winner? Mention anything notable they’ve been involved with.  Did they pose in Playboy? Are they a billionaire entrepreneur? Have they held some sort of prestigious public office? Mention that.  The producers of the show are concerned with ratings; you need to tell them how this particular celeb will bring in viewers – and awards and achievements are all concrete examples of this.

 DON’T: Be vague or weak in your arguments for why your celeb is notable. “So-and-so is a really good actor/singer/athlete/etc.” is wishy-washy and a matter of opinion.  So is “so-and-so is a really good person/has a great personality”.  Unless you can support any of these with awards won or evidence of charity work or cite specific examples of their “great personality” from interviews, none are valid arguments and are purely subjective. This is just like a high school research paper – you need to back up your statements with facts and examples, or else you really have no argument at all.   

 DO: Favorably mention previous celebs who have done the show that are similar to your celeb.  By comparing your celeb to one who has done the show in the past, you can demonstrate that there is a niche to be filled by your celeb on the show.  Are they a soap actor? Mention the popularity of contestants like Susan Lucci, Cameron Mathison, and Kelly Monaco.  Show people that your celeb would fit in on the show.

DON’T: Diss ANYONE involved with the show. It’s quite possibly the WORST thing you can do to garner support for your celeb. You’re sucking up to the producers – if you’re dissing any of the pros, hosts, judges, or previous contestants, it’s like telling them they’ve screwed up in creating the show…and now they’re ignoring whatever else you were going to say, even if it was insightful, because you’ve inadvertently insulted them.  Oh, and some of the viewers that may have otherwise joined your cause – they’re gone now too, because you have put down their favorite pro/judge/host/former contestant/etc.  And really, if your strongest arguments center around trash talking anyone from the show…then you really have no case to plead.  Focus on positively talking up your own celeb instead.

DO: Get creative.  Ok, Twitter accounts and Facebook pages are pretty much par for the course these days – but there are ways to set yourself apart from the masses of campaigners.  Make those pages really “pop” with good-quality videos & pix of your celeb, create some cute Twibbons or profile pix for supporters to use, or do a fun youtube video about your celeb, a la the Martha Byrne campaigners (really, the whole Martha Byrne campaign is to be lauded – IMO, they’re doing everything right).  Or, better yet, register your own domain name – get[your celeb here]ondwts.com.  This gives you a place where you have the undivided attention of those coming to the site – and odds are, they already might be interested in your cause, if they got to the site in the first place.  It’s a lot more effective than fighting with all of the other rival campaigners duking it out on general DWTS message boards, and you reap the benefits of your site popping up for everyone searching your celeb’s name on the search engines.

 DON’T: Start rattling off conspiracy theories about the show. Again, rather than focusing on the POSITIVE aspects of your own celeb, you’ve resorted to convoluted, rambling suspicions about how the show is biased against this, or plays favorites with that, or how the show is rigged, yadda yadda yadda…you get the idea.  Now everyone is looking at you like the proverbial crazy lady with the tinfoil hat who’s warning the neighbors about the upcoming alien invasion.  You just come across as crazy & irrational, and people don’t put stock in either of those qualities.  When in doubt, Occam’s Razor: the simplest explanation is usually the correct one – so complex conspiracy theories are rather pointless, anyway. Don’t get wrapped up in them ;-)

 DO: Proofread your work.  This may seem silly to some of you, but be honest: are you going pay more attention to a well-written, logical, coherent piece of campaign writing, or the one littered with grammar & spelling mistakes, obscenities, and punctuation overkill? The former makes you sound intelligent and considerate enough to make your work as easy as possible for viewers to read; the latter makes you sound immature and lazy, and will quickly make anyone attempting to read it lose interest in your message.  It’s a quick fix, mmmkay?

DON’T: Spam everyone involved with the show via Twitter, Facebook, fan sites, message boards, etc. This just serves to annoy them and will likely result in you getting blocked.  Johnny Weir fans, take heed: the pros, hosts, and judges have no input in what celebs get cast each season, so there’s really no point in relentlessly spamming Chelsie, Mark, Derek, Maks, Tony, Julianne, Tom, Carrie-Ann, Randall the costume designer, Joe Schmoe in craft services, Jimmy the cameraman, Kathy in ABC’s publicity department, etc. on Twitter, begging them to put Johnny on season 11.  If anything, this may actually deter the producers from casting a particular celeb due to a perceived unfair advantage.  And really, just don’t spam PERIOD – it annoys everyone.  A few well-worded tweets or wall posts are far more effective than a thousand repetitive ones. 

 DO: Work smarter, not harder. Now I really have to give Heidi credit for coming up with this one while she was proofreading this post for me (see kids? Even I proofread my work! :-D ).  Rather than the pointless & misguided spamming of everyone and their brother mentioned above, focus your efforts on those that actually share your interest to begin with – fans of that celeb.  See who’s mentioning [insert celeb here] in their tweets – follow them.  If they see you’re into [insert celeb here] as well, they will likely follow back…and then they’ll see all the stuff you’re tweeting about the campaign in their feed.  Better yet, see who’s following [insert celeb here], and follow them too – they’re going to be the ones who are most likely to help support the cause.  You can even set up your tweet deck (or whatever Twitter program you use) to search for any mention of that celeb’s name out in the Twitterverse, which can also lead you to potential supporters.  Really kids, it’s not all about quantity of tweets in this case…it’s about the quality.

So there you have it – the Courtney strategy for getting your celeb on DWTS.  Will it work? Probably not, but it may at least stop some of the campaigning madness that we’ve witnessed here ;-)  

July 27, 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!

Dancing with the Stars – Who Wore It Better, Part II

Since the first installment of our “Who Wore it Better?” series seemed to be reasonably popular (and some of you requested more!) here’s another helping of dittoed costumes for your consideration…discuss & enjoy!

NOTE: As I (Courtney) mentioned in the comments of the other post, we know there are many, many more dittos than this – so many that it’s going to become a recurring series, hopefully with a sort of “theme” to each post. So please, bear with us as we try to find the best pix for each one, and please do list any that you’d like to see a comparison of…we will do our best to make it happen!

Battle of the 2-piece yellow fringe dress: Anna’s pro dance during the Beach Boys’ week 2 results show performance vs. Lil Kim’s samba with Derek in season 8
Courtney: I think the color really pops on both ladies’ skin – I especially love the way it looks paired with red hair (which is why I have so much of it in my closet :-) ). However, I think it makes Kim look a little wide on the bottom, while it looks more balanced on Anna. I’m going with my fellow redhead on this one ;-)
Heidi: Can I pick neither? :-) I don’t like yellow. I guess if I have to pick I’ll go with Kim since she seems to work everything to the fullest. I also don’t think that teeny always equals the best look. See below. :-)
Winner: Anna, due to Heidi’s apathy.

Battle of the pale pink flutter-sleeve ballroom gown: Vienna’s waltz with Jake during the finale vs. Cheryl’s Viennese waltz with Maurice in season 7
Heidi: We’re batting zero on our ditto selections thus far. Just…ick. Gawdawful. I’ll go with Cheryl simply because she wasn’t on the Bachelor.
Courtney: I’m sorry, but I think this dress is hideous – at least the cut of it is. I feel like it adds the illusion of extra weight to both ladies, and I have a feeling it would do the same thing to any gal that was unfortunate enough to get stuck wearing it. I think the silhouette is slightly more pleasing on Vienna, but the color washes out her skin and doesn’t seem to support her, ahem, “assets” well. As for Cheryl, I think the color is great on her, but the cut does nothing for her figure. However, the overall look seems more “finished” on her, with the well-styled hair and jewelry. So I’m giving this one to Cheryl – barely…
Winner: Cheryl, by virtue of a few pieces of jewelry, some hairspray, and a lack of a history on a certain reality dating show.

Battle of the red lace & ruffles Latin dress: One of the dancers in the Haiti benefit “Stars of Dance” performance in week 2 vs. Chelsie’s salsa relay with Louis in season 9
Courtney: As a preface, almost all the costumes used in this particular “Stars of Dance” performance were reused from previous seasons. Unfortunately, I think they also copped out a bit in the hair & makeup department on the performance – seems like all the ladies in it got stuck with the standard-issue pulled-back, flower-in-the-hair and red lipstick, rather than a more customized look to complement their dresses. For that reason, I’m going to go with Chelsie on this one – her look seems a bit more tailored to fit the dress, and I think it doesn’t overwhelm her frame as much as it does the woman in the Haiti performance.
Heidi:I think the dress itself is more finished looking on Chelsie. Her look is also not as severe as the brunette wearing it and that works. It also doesn’t hurt that Chelsie just has a gorgeous smile in the picture we used. :-)
The winner: Chelsie, by a megawatt smile :-D

Battle of the silver-stoned, drapey Latin dress: Tyne Stecklein’s lyrical dance during Maxwell’s results show performance in week 4 vs. Kym’s rumba with Warren in season 7
Courtney: While I like the dress on both ladies, I’m kinda glad they got rid of the weird purple dangling fabric pieces in the front when they tweaked the dress for Tyne (who, by the way, I think is absolutely gorgeous and was stunning in this performance!) and replaced them with less distracting drapes. Love you Kym, but I’m going with Tyne on this one.
Heidi: Hey now, drapey is a requirement for the rumba, as is made glaringly apparent every season on DWTS. :-) As for who I like better, well, I’m not a fan of the emaciated, anorexic, count every rib look, so I have to go with Kym. Although Tyne does bear a striking resemblance to a young Tea Leoni! Very beautiful face.
The winner: Due to Court’s disdain for weird dangly fabric, and Heidi’s disdain for visible ribcages…it’s a tie.

Battle of the red-stoned, cut-out ballroom gown: Chelsie’s pre-season photo shoot with Jake vs. Brooke’s tango with Derek in season 7
Courtney: Another dress where some subtle tweakage does a world of good – I’m glad they got rid of that weird black waist strap from when Brooke wore it. But again, looks like hair & makeup may have gotten a little lazy with Chelsie’s shoot – it just looks like her everyday look, with some bracelets thrown on in a feeble attempt to complete the ensemble. So overall, the look on Chelsie is just kinda plain – while Brooke’s look is more polished & tied-together. Awkward crotch-shot aside, Brooke rocked this one better.
Heidi: I have to go with Brooke. I love the belt thing, but the long black gloves in combination with that belt really make it a much more interesting dress on Brooke. It’s so plain on Chelsie. Not to mention that it would be difficult for any woman to stack up to Brooke in the body department, even one 15 years her junior.
The winner: Brooke. ‘Nuff said.

Battle of the red-stoned & feathered Latin dress: One of the dancers in the Haiti “Stars of Dance” performance vs. Debi’s salsa with Maks in season 9
Heidi: Do I have to choose? Really, I’m sure this dress looks good on someone, but neither of these two ladies. And I don’t think it’s their bodies, I think it’s the hair. Like I’ve said before, your hair can destroy an otherwise good ensemble.
Courtney: I hate this dress, too – probably because, as I mentioned earlier this year, I am ridiculously allergic to real feathers, particularly ostrich ones (which is why I had such disdain for Erin’s first samba dress…then again, that dress was just kinda tacky any way you looked at it). The skirt on this one looks like a dead muppet, and both ladies seemed to get stuck with the same weird, side-parted-but-too-high-up-on-the-crown-and-possibly-guilty-of-bump-it-use updos (and WTF is in Debbie’s hair? Shoelaces???). Neither one wore it better. BURN IT.
The winner: Everyone stuck in this dress loses thus far…except maybe Elmo.

Battle of the red-spangly, stoned-bodice Latin dress: Liana Churilova (Emmanuel Pierre-Antoine’s partner) in the Haiti performance vs. Susan’s cha-cha with Tony in season 7
Courtney: Ok, if anyone has ever been fortunate enough to catch one of Emmanuel & Liana’s performances in person, I think you can agree with me – they’re awesome. She was really the only standout female for me in this performance (except maybe Alexandra Gregoire-Prophete, the sole Haitian lady in the dance who is actually one of Emmanuel’s former partners – also pretty awesome) and definitely rocked this dress better than Susan, who seemed a little overwhelmed by it. I also thought the color popped better on Liana’s skin, and seemed to move better on her.
Heidi: Have you noticed that we have an obscene amount of red in this particular post? :-) Good lord. Anyway, I really like this little dress, but I think Susan may be too scrawny for it and possibly not confident enough for it. She doesn’t look horrible in it by any stretch, but Susan just looks uncomfortable to me.
The winner: Liana, for being comfortable rocking yet another red dress.

Stay tuned next week for another costume showdown. We’re going to try to do a male one too. :-)

July 13, 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. :-)