Well, the first night is over and we have an idea of what we’re working with. With one notable exception, there were no bad dances, which is unusual for the first go round. It appears the season holds promise. However, dance ability often doesn’t really play into the final result – Bobby Bones, for example. So, everything I say here should be taken with a grain of salt. Whenever the American public is allowed to weigh in, you can be sure their stupidity will be on display. They are often more willing to blindly follow some talentless celebrity they’re obsessed with rather than vote for the ones who are actually creating art. Anyway, enough of the rant.
I expected to allow space for Tyra’s wardrobe, but she only had one outfit and it was sedate, for her. Although I haven’t seen shoulders that square since the 1980s or on Monday Night Football.
Martin Kove. Let’s start at the bottom. Possibly the worst paso doble ever (excepting Kate Gosselin). Paso should be a natural for the characters he portrays, but it could be that his characters don’t reflect who he really is. However, as an actor, he should have made us believe. I blame Britt for that. I have no idea what the story line of his dance was; maybe horror movie? He was reminiscent of Frankenstein’s monster stumbling about trying to catch the girl. And at one point he reminded me of Godzilla swatting at the buildings in his way. He’s had his last hurrah, now it’s time for the rocking chair.
Iman. Younger people probably don’t remember Mutt and Jeff, but this was them. As Bruno said, the jive is hard for taller people, and he was unlucky to draw that right off the bat. Although I’m left wondering how they allot the dances. Who decides who gets the dreaded quickstep and who gets an easy salsa? It was a nice workmanlike piece, but no pizzazz. Len called it informal and I guess that quantified it (although I think 4 was a bit harsh). I probably would have said “pedestrian”. He’s a bball player and will get a boost from that, but he needs to be the second one gone. Can we arrange a double elimination next week and then get on with the good dancers?
There were five tangos during the night. I saw four nice dances, and one good tango. Where do they come up with the awful music? Those songs weren’t tangos. Do the producers sit around and say, “Well, we got a fast song here. I know, let’s make ‘em tango.” And the others on the production team laugh and shout, “Yeah!”? I swear some of them looked like hustle.
Jimmie Allen was a victim. I liked him. He has personality and natural humor. He and Emma work well together. I hope he sticks around. Their tango was messy, but I like the guy.
Brian Austin Green. The foxtrot was okay, but nothing special. I really don’t know what he did because I was watching Sharna. The blonde hair will take some getting used to, but she so reminds me of Marvel’s Black Widow. She’s definitely my favorite dancer. Unfortunately, I don’t think she’ll keep Brian around for long. The 90210 crowd doesn’t pull all that much weight anymore.
Matt James and the Miz did two of the night’s three cha chas. Matt’s definitely got game. With no dance or athletic experience he went in and gave it a good shot. He’s got natural talent, but Lindsay needs to work him and fix his posture. I really liked the Miz. At times when Witney caught him off guard or when talking to the judges, his real character slipped out and he seemed like a nice guy. I liked his humor and he’s a natural showman, working the camera. Being an athlete he can use his body, but needs to remember dancing is not wrestling. He needs to loosen up. And I want that shirt he had.
Cody is my homey. He’s from North Carolina so I have to try to like him. He didn’t really help himself. First off, that fluorescent suit made my TV buzz (and my eyes). Maybe he’s naturally effervescent, but Cheryl needs to tone him down. There was way too much energy in his tango. It was one of the ones that looked like a hustle. I know he’s glad to be there, but now he needs to settle down and get to work.
Christine Chiu was also a victim of a non-tango tango. Maybe her age makes her stiff, but it looked like Pasha was moving a mannequin around the dance floor. I feel 25 was too generous a score for that mess.
Olivia Jade has the easiest dance, salsa. But why were the steps so big? Is that ballroom style salsa? Even Val was taking gigantic steps. That lost the Latin feel of the dance. Liked her mile long legs, but she’s so young I feel like a perv.
Kenya and Brandon’s foxtrot seemed shorter than everyone else’s routine. That was fine, because it didn’t look like foxtrot and they didn’t look comfortable with each other. She didn’t deserve the 26.
Melora. Artem did what he could with an awful tango song. And he got her moving. Unfortunately it looked a lot like walk, pose, walk, pose.
Mel C. That was a great way to open the night. Definitely the best of the three cha chas. Good rhythm, not stiff and she worked the camera like a pro. She should be around for a while. Loved the color of Gleb’s shirt, although he needed some buttons.
Amanda Kloots had the best tango of the night. But then, she has Broadway dance experience. I wonder if they’ll throw a “Broadway” genre at her one night? I expected the legs since she was a Rockette. Early on it looked like Alan was toting her. No one called it, though.
Suni Lee. She is my favorite of the competition. She nailed the jive. How can someone so short have legs so long? But more than the great dance, I loved her personality. When she talked about her “performance smile” I cracked up. She’ll be here until the finals unless the public does something completely stupid.
JoJo. 29? No way. I think the judges were afraid to be tough with her for fear of being called out as homophobic. Let me do it, then. As a person who was called the F word more times than I care to remember growing up because I sucked at sports, I think I’m unlikely to be homophobic. That QS was a mess. It looked like there was no frame and they were flopping against each other. It was too frenetic and lacked any of the class associated with QS. I give them kudos for the nice recovery when Jenna stumbled. But no, not that good.
I was annoyed hearing Tyra go on and on about it being a historic first. Well, I’m annoyed hearing Tyra go on and on about anything, but what’s the big deal. They act like women don’t dance with each other. Have they been to clubs or ballroom venues? Women dance together all the time because the men are in short supply. Now a real historic moment would be if they put two men together. But that would give homophobic America a coronary. Although men dancing together is also a thing. There are male pair dancing events. I saw two men audition for So You Think You Can Dance who were dance partners. I heard that tango was originally men dancing together. Check this out. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NOJ0m9G5PqI
If JoJo wants to dance with a woman, fine. I don’t see what all the fuss is about. It’s dancing, not sex. Although Baptists always said people shouldn’t dance because it makes them think about sex. And what’s wrong with that, I always answered.
Personally, I prefer to watch male/female partners because each gender brings something different to the dance. When I see two women or two men dance, it seems to lack something. But then, I’m an old guy. What do I know?
Right now, it’s hard to tell who has the most edge. Suni is cute, funny and an Olympian. That’s a trifecta. JoJo has ability and buzz. I think that will be the ultimate battle ground. Of course anyone else could slip in as a dark horse. It’ll be interesting to watch. My four favorites right now are Suni, the Miz, Jimmie and, yes, Cody (if he calms down a bit). Of those four, only Suni is a good dancer. The others are just fun.