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PureDWTS: Academy Changes Rules for Outstanding Choreography Category – What Does This Mean for DWTS?

Probably not much, in the great scheme of things…but it might *slightly* improve the chances of DWTS getting a nomination:

Restructured Choreography Categories

There will be two separate juried awards:

Outstanding Choreography for Variety and Reality Programming (Variety Series, Variety Special, Structured Reality, Unstructured Reality and Competition Program)
Outstanding Choreography for Scripted Programming (Comedy Series, Drama Series, Limited Series and Television Movie)

There were several other changes made to other categories, such as a minimum length for the Outstanding TV Movie category and a new sound mixing category, per Deadline.  The other rule change which could affect DWTS’ eligibility for nominations involves the “hanging episode” rule, which allows for the submission of certain episodes airing outside the designated eligibility period:

Hanging Episode Eligibility

Eligibility changed from “airing prior to the nomination-round voting deadline” to
“airing prior to the start of nomination-round voting.”

Addendum to Hanging Episode Rule:

Programmed networks may post episodes on a distribution platform in advance of
the episodes’ airdates in cases where they otherwise would be “hanging” or
ineligible because they are scheduled outside the eligibility period. Posting must
meet the following criteria:

● Episodes must be posted within the current eligibility year (i.e., by May 31).
● Episodes may be posted on a private distribution platform accessible only to
Television Academy membership.
● Episodes must be the same in form and content as they will later appear in
their regular time slots.
● The subsequent airing of the episodes must take place within the month of
June.

So what do the above rule changes mean for DWTS? Given that the choreography category has now been split into reality and scripted, it may free up a slot or two for nominations from reality dance shows, since there have been a few rogue nominations from scripted shows (notably Smash, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, and The Real O’Neals) that have snuck into the category in recent years and given SYTYCD & DWTS a run for their money.  That being said, I’m not sure there was anything particularly noteworthy, choreography-wise, on DWTS this past season (two seasons if you count Juniors) that would be able to stand up to Nigel’s relentless nomination campaigning over at SYTYCD, or some of the genius work coming out of WOD (though they were notably snubbed this past year, likely owing to Nigel’s aforementioned campaigning). As for the scripted category, I have a feeling it’s probably going to be pretty small – maybe only 2-3 nominations – and if there’s a contender for a winner in that category, I think it might be this surprisingly edgy dance from It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia – can’t remember who tweeted me this (Tres? Robbie?) but it’s a gem:

As for the hanging nomination rule, it won’t affect DWTS this time around, as there’s no spring season that might miss the deadline…but who knows what the future holds.

Thoughts?

December 14, 2018 I Written By

Ultrasound sales specialist by day, semi-knowledgeable DWTS fan by night...with a smattering of hair & makeup enthusiast, occasional model, baker, 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. Follow me (and my dog!) on Twitter & Instagram: @putuincespence & @BirkinTheBulldog

PureDWTS DWTS Juniors Season 1 – Court’s Season 1 Post-Mortem: What Worked, What Needs Work, Some Tea, and Final Thoughts

So here it is – my high-level thoughts on the season as a whole.  Some of you have been asking for “more tea”, which is kinda tough because there’s not really so much to be had on Juniors 😛 But I did the best I could…

Some tea:

There was no bonus or cash prize for the winner. You heard right: Sky & JT didn’t receive any additional cash bonus or other compensation for winning Juniors.  The prize was literally just the trophy and bragging rights – all the kids got paid by the episode, and were paid the same fee per episode they appeared on. It’s a rather refreshing, egalitarian take that we don’t really see on the main show, where winners & finalists get bonuses for winning or just sticking around longer, and celebs play hardball with contracts so bigger names can negotiate more money for appearing on the show. And I think the lack of cash motivation allowed the kids to do the show for the right reasons – they weren’t in it for the money, but for the experience.

If there had been an elimination in the semifinals, it was allegedly Ariana & Artyon that would have gotten sent home. Part of me wonders if they opted to do a 4-couple finale because Ariana & Artyon were such firecrackers – of the 4 finalists, they were probably the most energetic, and offered a nice balance with Sky & JT being adorable and Kenzie & Sage and Miles & Rylee being more mature and subdued.

Tripp apparently had no idea he was even doing DWTS Juniors until the day of the first rehearsal. Contrary to what some rogue Palin fans have tried to claim, Tripp allegedly had no idea he was doing the show until the morning of his first rehearsal with Hailey & Jenna, per source who saw the first rehearsal tape.  Talk about an awkward (and potentially traumatic) introduction.  I guess Mama Bristol made all the arrangements for him to be on the show and then just didn’t tell him until it was too late to back out. So the permanent bewildered expression the poor kid had on his face the whole time he was on screen? It makes sense now, given the context.

Source isn’t 100% sure the voting clickers the audience used to vote were even working properly for most of the season. Apparently the handy-dandy “clicker remotes” the eligible audience members were given to vote with at the end of each show were a crapshoot most of the time – on premiere night, the crew ended up frantically handing out pencils and paper to about half the audience because they couldn’t get the clickers to work (confirmed by someone who was in the audience the night they taped the premiere).  The issues apparently continued for most of the season – source “was not entirely sure” the voting was even working properly in the finals, as the remotes were pretty low-tech (those of you who’ve been in college in the last 20-odd years – think of the remote controls you used to record attendance for your big lectures). Now before any of you start crying foul, some perspective: given that there was no cash prize involved, TPTB were not bound by the same laws that prevent the regular version of DWTS (which DOES have a cash prize) from “rigging the votes”. And per the source, the audience support for Sky was overwhelming – even if all the clickers stopped working, I think it would have been obvious based on applause and cheers who the favorite was. It might have caused problems with determining how the other three placed, though, which could explain why it wasn’t announced.  With that in mind…

Who finished 2nd, 3rd, & 4th? Per source, they were never told how everyone placed in the finals, aside from Sky & JT winning – and I’m fine with that, as I don’t really see the value in knowing how they ranked otherwise.  They all made the finals; that’s something to be commended, and if I were one of those kids and I ended up in 4th place, I’d feel pretty bummed. THAT BEING SAID – many of you have asked how I think they placed, so here’s my take: given that Ariana allegedly was low-kid on the totem pole and in danger of elimination during the semis, and given that she & Artyon were arguably the weakest performance-wise on finale night, I’m going to venture a guess that she would have probably ended up in 4th place. Source said audience support for Kenzie & Miles at the finale seemed neck-and-neck, but I’d give Miles a slight edge given that he danced later in the show and had probably the two strongest routines, choreography and performance-wise – so I’d put him in 2nd place; I think Kenzie probably ended up 3rd, as the favorite dance with Gleb seemed to fall a bit flat and going first never seems to bode well for those in the finals.

What worked:

Having the regular pros as mentors. It gave me some serious warm fuzzies seeing how into coaching the pros got, and how extraordinarily proud they were of their teams. Loved seeing moments where they were genuinely moved by their junior teams, and seeing how their junior teams idolized them. It also gave the pros a chance to show off their choreography chops in a new way (choreographing for kids is a different ballgame than choreographing for adults!) without having to worry about performing it themselves. This is closer to how it works in the “real life” ballroom world: competing couples don’t usually choreograph themselves – they hire an outside choreographer for that part, and they just perform it. With the exception of one pro (Gleb, who I think is a lazy, self-interested choreographer that needs to seek outside help more often), I think all the pros handled the whole experience beautifully. Stand-outs for me personally were Lindsay (who I felt was the most consistent in delivering appropriate-yet-inspired choreo that suited her juniors), Brandon (who got to show us what he’s capable of, choreography-wise, and what he can do when given an energetic pair to coach), Alan (who seemed to really bond with his pair, and show us a nuturing “Papa Bear” side), Artem (who took a junior pairing that, on paper, looked hopeless, and turned them into a respectable team), and Emma (whose choreo was both creative and really suited her pair well).

The junior pros. I think every last one of them was brilliant, in terms of skill – I’ve talked with Justin about this a few times, but the group they chose is really reflective of the next generation of professional dancers: they’re all impressively cross-trained, and seem to pick up new styles with incredible ease.  They’re also all born performers, and seem to have never encountered stage fright in their life. Ones to watch: Kamri (who I think could be the next Maddie Ziegler – perhaps even eclipsing her in talent and charisma) and Artyon (he came into this season with no ballroom experience, picked it up impressively well, and made up for any other shortcomings with a strong sense of showmanship).

The theme nights. While this is usually something I complain about on the regular version, I thought the themes were well-chosen and offered a decent framework for the kids to work their routines around – and there’s something to be said for watching kids throw themselves headlong into Disney and holiday-themed routines 🙂 The themes were appropriate and they were ones the kids seemed to really get into – so I’m good with it.

Mandy as a judge. At times, it felt like Mandy was the only one on the judging panel that could come up with a concise, coherent, and pertinent critique for the teams – while I didn’t always agree with her 100%, I thought she was at the very least trying to be constructive (and specific enough for the kids to actually understand) and supportive of the kids at the same time. It’s a delicate balance, and I think she’s the only judge on the panel that carried it off consistently.

Frankie & Jordan as hosts. I think Frankie handled the main hosting role with incredible ease, while still being approachable to the kids and having a fun-loving vibe about him.  I know some of you thought Frankie came off as “awkward”, but I thought his vibe was perfect for the show – the kids aren’t terribly articulate or polished, why should Frankie be? 🙂 And I love the way Frankie & Jordan vibed off of each other – there was a definite synergy there, likely formed during their own season and their time out on tour together.

 

What needs work:

Adam as a judge. Sorry, Adam fans – while I adore him as a person, I just don’t know that I think he’s well-suited to the judging panel of this show.  I felt at times that he was more interested in showboating and coming up with gif-worthy phrases than he was giving more concrete, useful critiques. Or maybe he actually gave them, and they were just edited out for time.  Who knows – but if he was just hired to be less relevant, more flamboyant version of Bruno, and they didn’t much care about him actually legitimately judging, then why not just change that third judge’s chair into a rotating guest judging position? It would at the very least offer up some variety – I’d love to see Rashad step in to judge the kids, maybe Kenny Ortega…there’s tons of possibilities.

The length of the show.  I doubt there’s much that can be done about this one, but I feel like even extending the show by a half hour could go a long way in slowing down the sometimes breakneck pace at which the episodes seemed to move. Or, if they can’t increase the show to 90 minutes, at least decrease the number of couples or turn the episodes in multi-part ones – maybe when they’re in the early weeks with a lot of couples, let six of them dance one week, and the other six the following week? At least until they whittle down to a more manageable number.

The voting process.  As mentioned above – the clickers need work. I don’t think a live, public vote is necessary in this instance (a la the main show), but at the very least, invest in some more reliable technology.

Kenzie as a contestant. I feel bad putting this one here, because it’s not necessarily Kenzie’s fault per se, but I felt like she (and Sage) stuck out like a sore thumb among the contestants: they looked far older, more mature, and more professional than the rest of the couples.  And I always felt like Kenzie was performing as if this was a job, rather than an opportunity; while all the other kids were out there really letting loose and having fun, Kenzie felt more controlled and detached, as if she was dancing to collect a paycheck rather than to have a good time.  I think part of what appealed to a lot of us was just how down-to-earth and genuine Juniors was compared to the regular show: there wasn’t an agenda, there wasn’t the usual pretense and posturing and ulterior motives from both the judges and celebs; it was just good clean fun. And Kenzie’s presence on Juniors felt a bit more like a calculated career move, like something we’d see on the regular show – that, and the fact that the show as a whole seemed to be trying to downplay her dance experience. The whole thing just seemed to be a bit at odds with the tone of the show, in general.

 

FINAL THOUGHTS: I think Juniors ended up being a real feather in DWTS’s cap – and I think it hearkened back to a simpler, more wholesome era of DWTS for many of us, when the show didn’t feel so blatantly manipulated and commercial. Kids don’t understand (or care) how to manipulate a viewing audience – they were all there to just have fun, and they threw themselves headlong into it without hesitation.  What I wouldn’t give to see some more of that unbridled, genuine zeal on the adult version of the show! I don’t think Juniors has been fast-tracked to cancellation yet – while ratings may not have been as impressive as the ones the main version pulls in (or did at one time…), it may be perfect for a Friday time slot, when expectations are low and they might be able to grab a larger cross-section of that coveted 18-34 demo, since it’s not a school night. I think it’s also good to keep in mind that it’s a much cheaper show to produce than the original – pre-taping everything over the course of a month and not offering huge cash bonuses goes a long way in keeping overhead costs down (and the show around longer).  Remember: if they’re gonna cancel Juniors, they’ve first gotta come up with something better/cheaper to take its place.

Anyone else have any final thoughts they’d like to share? Recommendations for how to improve the show?

I Written By

Ultrasound sales specialist by day, semi-knowledgeable DWTS fan by night...with a smattering of hair & makeup enthusiast, occasional model, baker, 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. Follow me (and my dog!) on Twitter & Instagram: @putuincespence & @BirkinTheBulldog

Report On Old Pros Returning For Possible Last Dancing With The Stars Season, Who Would You Like To See Come Back?

US Magazine has an article up on the Fall Season of Dancing With The Stars. Supposedly, they talked to a “source” who mentions this could be the “last” season of Dancing With The Stars and if it is, they want to make it the greatest by bringing back “old pros”. This is music to my ears. I would love to see Karina Smirnoff, Cheryl Burke, Derek Hough, and Mark Ballas return. I’d also love to see the return of Maks Chmerkovksiy, Peta Murgatroyd, and Edyta Śliwińska. How about you? Be sure to read more at US Magazine.

The ratings have not been what the network had hoped for, despite changing things up with an all-athletes season last spring and Dancing With the Stars: Juniors, which wrapped this month.

The source also added that there are talks of season 28, set to air in the fall, being the last. If that happens, the network is hoping to bring back multiple original pros, including Karina Smirnoff, Cheryl Burke, Derek Hough, Mark Ballas and many more.

“They want to have a great last season if there is just one season left,” the source noted.

I Written By

Hi, I'm one of the three of Charlie's Angels at this site. Heehee. Not only am I a big music and dancing fan, I'm also a big lover of photography, nature, animals, and spending as much time as possible camping with my hubby and our loving and patriotic doggie, Cash. To read more on me and view my photos, see Lisa Kay Photography. You can also follow me at: Voguerista Twitter & Voguerista Soundcloud.

Jimmy Kimmel’s Guillermo So Upset About The Dancing with the Stars News

Hi All. I’m back! How are you all? I hope well. I’ve missed you loads. Sorry for my absence, but, life caught up with me in a big way this past year as some of you know, but, I think I’ve found a way to balance everything (hopefully). It will help to balance everything even more with Dancing With The Stars going to only one season for which I’ve been wishing for (for a long time) as too much of something can get overwhelming sometimes, right? However, poor Guillermo from Jimmy Kimmel Live is devastated to say the least. lol Watch this…

I Written By

Hi, I'm one of the three of Charlie's Angels at this site. Heehee. Not only am I a big music and dancing fan, I'm also a big lover of photography, nature, animals, and spending as much time as possible camping with my hubby and our loving and patriotic doggie, Cash. To read more on me and view my photos, see Lisa Kay Photography. You can also follow me at: Voguerista Twitter & Voguerista Soundcloud.