Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Side by Side Pros For Added Spice

Pros (Tony and Emma) on the left, Ingo and Kym on the right. Courtesy of ABC/Dancing with the Stars.
This week on Dancing With the Stars, judge Len Goodman decided it would be a good thing to have two pros dancing side by side to each couple, so that the audience (and the contestants) could see how they are actually supposed to be dancing.
In some cases, this turned out well. In others, like the supremely self-conscious Ingo (and Kym), it was a disaster. I can totally understand. As an actor, you make your own choices on how to read a line. You put together 25 different actors, you’re probably going to get 25 different line readings. And each, in the craft of acting, would be fine. (Well, assuming they don’t botch it completely.)
So to have someone dancing side by side, and actually showing you the correct move (while you are executing the incorrect move) has got to be very intimidating. Ingo and Kym danced first, and it was disastrous. 
The set up was this. First the pro dancers would dance, then the competing couple AND the pros, then the competing couple by themselves (all within the same song). Which nicely made for longer dances, and also allowed the audience to know more clearly what to be looking for in the “celebrity” dancer.
When the part of the dance came where Ingo is side by side with a pro (which was last year's champ Tony Dovolani), Ingo crumbled. It was like a death knell to his positive spirit. So when he got around to dancing “his” part, he was barely walking through it. Very sad.
Others fared better. Some positively shone.
For example, my favorite dancers of the night, who are on the fast track to becoming my favorites to win this Mirror Ball: Val and Zendaya. They were blessed with Val's big brother Maks and Anna Trebunskaya. Their task? The Argentine tango.
They had two problems with this. First, Val had never before danced an Argentine tango. Second, Zendaya is 16, and she's having some problems with the whole "passion" aspect of the tango. Maks was great with teaching them the Argentine tango steps. Anna: "Teaching (Zendaya) to be a woman is harder."
Well, that's what they said in the opening package. Then you see the dance. Holy moly. Seriously one of the best Argentine tangos I've seen on this show.
Val Chmerskovskiy and Zendaya. Courtesy of ABC.
Just unbelievable dancing. And they were rewarded with the first 10s of this season. (From Carrie Ann and Bruno. Len was a holdout with a measly 9.) Really stunning stuff.
Another fun pairing was Maks and Anna with Jacoby and Karina. 
Anna Trebunskaya, Maksim Chmerskovskiy, Jacoby Jones and Karina Smirnoff.
I'm not sure why Maks "left" the show, but I'm just really really glad he's back. He was really missed, and he really added a lot to this episode.
Jacoby and Karina are a couple who have to struggle with the height issue. Sometimes it looks funny. But sometimes, you get effects like this:
Jacoby Jones and Karina Smirnoff. "Look, ma, no hands!" :-0
Mark Ballas' stunning choreography continues to wow us week after week. I loved their dance this week, with Tony Dovolani and troupe pro Whitney Carson.

Whitney, Tony, Aly and Mark Ballas. Courtesy of ABC/Dancing with the Stars.
Aly got some tips on how to do the "women" stuff from Whitney. There are some things about presence that a man just can't teach.

But week after week, they are just fun to watch.

Aly R. and Mark Ballas have some fun on the dance floor.
And then we had this:

Andy Dick, aka "Ando," ziplines onto the stage.
Not as much fun, for my money, as when David Arquette ziplined onto the stage in one of his dances, but certainly not boring either. Week after week, Andy Dick surprises and amazes with how hard he works, and while he may not be the best dancer, he is consistent and tries very hard. That is what this show is supposed to be about. And that's why I keep voting for him and Sharna.

Andy Dick and Sharna Burgess. Doncha just love 'em?
Can't leave out my other favorite couple, Kellie Pickler and Derek Hough. Derek, if I haven't said it enough, is just a brilliant choreographer.

Kellie Pickler and Derek Hough.
We won't talk about the ones who ended up going home this week. Only to say that I love Cheryl Burke and am really glad she is no longer saddled with this particular partner. *sigh*

Hope you enjoyed this week. It was crazy.

Jacoby Jones doing his "dance."

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please leave a comment. I encourage and welcome the dialogue.