The Usual Suspects: The Typecasting of DWTS, Part II

Ok, I realize I promised this yesterday – but alas, the laundry, dishes, & pets needing baths were screaming at me to take care of them, so this got bumped to today…but it is here, prior to the actual announcement of the cast!

Got some great feedback from part 1 – it was nice to see that you guys have noticed similar patterns with previous casts, and even filled me in on some potential contestants that I hadn’t yet heard of! Good stuff…keep it coming!

Alright, onto the other 6 types…


The Teen Idol

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

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

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

Possible candidates this season: The recent development of Nicole Scherzinger from the Pussycat Dolls being a possible participant doesn’t seem too far-fetched.  Candace Cameron-Bure (aka D.J. from Full House) has also hinted that she might be a future contestant.

The Host

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

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: None yet, but a strange part of me would love to see lovable southerner Paula Deen from the Food Network…what’s not to like? She’s like a kinder, gentler, G-rated version of Cloris: she cooks, she eats, she talks in a syrupy southern accent!

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

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

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: Can’t think of anyone better to embody “has-been” than Shannon Doherty – kicked off both 90210 & Charmed, I can’t think of anything big she’s been involved with in the past 5 years, making her pretty free to do DWTS.

The Reality Star

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

Advantages: Many have achieved pop culture icon status on their respective reality outlets, making them fairly recognizable. Some cast-offs (think Melissa Rycroft) have also found sympathy in the hearts of the viewers.

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: It pains me to even type the name Kate Gosselin.  At least for me, she embodies the worst qualities of reality tv – the scandal, the misplaced priorities, the shameless self-promotion, the greed…I could go on & on. Sig Hansen from Deadliest Catch? Now that, on the other hand, would be absolutely hilarious.

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

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: Can I be optimistic once more and through Paula Abdul out there for consideration? J Just let me dream, people…

The Wild Card

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

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

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

Possible candidates this season: This is a complete reach, but I would totally stand behind Captain Chesley Sullenberger (the pilot who landed the plane on the Hudson?) competing on the show because it would be a fantastic human interest story. Plus, it’s delightfully random, so it could work.

Ok, we’re mere hours away from the announcement of the new cast.  Anyone else you think might be able to round out the cast, based on the “usual suspects”? 🙂