Channeling Len

Filed under:Television — posted by Anwyn on May 8, 2007 @ 7:39 am

Okay, here’s how the watching of Dancing with the Stars went last night in my house:

Somebody would dance. I would comment. Judges Carrie Ann and Bruno would say something, and then Len Goodman would say exactly what I said and soak up huge amounts of abuse from the audience and his fellow judges.

He was right that Apolo & Julianne’s tango was “a cacophany of noise and movement.” When it came on I said it was too fast, but Len’s word “hectic” described it far better. Julianne is good at pushing boundaries, and I’ve liked some of her stuff that Len didn’t, but not that. Here’s Apolo’s problem: no weight. He’s a little, light, young, fast guy–why not? That’s what he’s supposed to be on the speed track. It hasn’t translated well to dancing. Well enough, but not well, which I think is Len’s point with him every week. The two of them need to separate the sting from the wisdom of Len’s critique and use it a little. I’m on track to vote for Ian and Cheryl next week just to try to help ensure that Apolo goes home first. Who can even look at him with firecracker Julianne on the floor? There are only a couple of occasions when he has really been able to hang with her–the rumba and the paso, and maybe the jive. I give him the props for last night’s paso–it’s a hugely difficult dance and he managed it with some aplomb.

Len was also right about Laila & Maks’s choreography, no matter whose idea it was, hers or his. I said at the time: “Her father in the audience, this huge occasion, and she’s lying down while Maks spins around for 30 seconds?” Ridiculous. Len’s right. Dance.

Let’s see, who else did Len bash? He’s going to be bashing Bruno in the teeth if the man doesn’t shut up and let him have his say. I like Bruno; he’s mainly a shrewd judge and hugely entertaining, but shut up already. I think Julianne’s appalled hyperventilating was more due to the two judges going at each other than to Len’s criticism, and I felt a bit bad for her.

Poor Ian. Foxtrot panned by all three judges and unable to melt the plastic persona even for the romantic rumba. He’s an actor, for goshsakes. Why can’t he pretend he wants Cheryl more than anything in the world and then let that show when he dances? For that matter, who wouldn’t want her while she’s dancing? She’s hotter than a biscuit. Wanting people was what they supposedly portray best on soaps like 90210. Use it, Ian, or go home before Apolo does.

P.S. What was the deal with Joey’s mambo? The music was awful. Horrible awful (as was Ian & Cheryl’s rumba to an entirely unromantic political hack tune). He stomped around far too flat-footed for somebody of his talent. I wonder if the mambo’s just not his dance.

P.P.S. Let’s see the judges dance. They’re all professionals, and I realize they might not want to show off any potential deterioration of their skills due to age and having moved on to choreography and teaching, but let’s see them do something non-demanding, like a waltz. The men could cut in on each other and whirl Carrie Ann around the floor for a few minutes. It’d be lovely.

Update: Joey and Kym in the bottom two? Looks on everybody’s faces indicated they were just as bewildered as I.



image: detail of installation by Bronwyn Lace