Tristan MacManus is dangerous. His dances are dangerous. This is precisely why we are writing this cleverly titled piece - “The Dangerous Dances of Tristan MacManus.” When we refer to the dangers of a dance, we’re not necessarily talking about falling and breaking an ankle, although such an occurrence is a distinct possibility for either of us when attempting dance in any form. We thought long and hard about this topic (at least 20 minutes), and we then picked Tristan’s 12 most dangerous dances on DWTS. Some will shock you, some will merely surprise you, and some will make you question our sanity. That’s okay; we do that every day so we won’t take it personally. So fasten your seat belts, enjoy the ride, and we hope you get at least a few laughs as you try to understand how our minds work. Good luck with that.
(By the way, once again, Azline Dancer has done research for us on one particular dance, although we totally confused her when dishing out our little teasers). In addition, these are in no particular order; Dance # 1 is as deadly as Dance # 12 in our humble opinions.
1. The Run Away and Leave Your Husband 80s Rumba
This one was obvious to us because danger permeates the entire dance from start to finish. The most subtle elements of danger tend to be the most lethal. Forget the bad boy (well, maybe not). Forget the hips (or not). The bottom line is that this particular dance has a very dangerous effect on women. How, you ask? Well, frankly it makes a woman want to don her leather pants and jacket (or go out and max out the credit card to buy these very flattering garments), get a few tattoos on assorted body parts, curl and hairspray the bangs until they are 6 inches off of the forehead, pull on the dusty black boots (again, credit card followed by rolling them in the dirt will do), get a watch with a really wide black leather wristband adorned with spikes, go buy a Harley with flames going up the side (or borrow it from Bubba who hangs out at the biker bar in the seedy part of town), and hop on the back with your Irish James Dean look-a-like at the helm. Oh yeah, and don't forget to let out a girly shriek as he revs up the ol' hog and speeds off with you clinging to him in reckless abandon. In essence, the good girl has gone rebel to keep up with her bad boy rebel. All that danger is sexy. Thus, it is also trouble.
Clearly, we haven't thought nearly enough about this scenario. Nope...not at all.
2. The Waltz With Peta or I Want to be Her
This dance was figuratively loaded with dynamite, and there is no possible way that you can say that any form of dynamite isn’t dangerous. Yes, this slow, gentle waltz to Puccini’s O mio babbino caro had enough explosive power to blow the roof right off the ballroom. It was also cleverly camouflaged by having a beautiful and talented opera singer providing the lovely music while Tristan and Peta worked their magic and cast their spell over all of us. How, oh how, could this exquisite waltz accented by two tons of whimsical, fake smoke be dangerous? First of all, the fake smoke concerns us just a little. You could seriously get all caught up in the dance and then ram your shin right into one of the floor stage lights. But as we have stated, we’re not going to be literal. Instead, we are trying to be literary and not think about the expletives we would screech out (very loudly and live on national television) upon contact with the stage lights, or the fact that all that dry ice stuff could probably burn the eyes, make us cry like babies, force us to make a wrong turn, and then ultimately end up dancing with Katherine Jenkins instead of Tristan. Worse, we could trip on those steps that lead to the judges’ table and land sprawled out in front of the entire world instead of dancing cheek to cheek with Tristan. But we’re not going to talk about that. We did, however, literally start having heart palpitations as we witnessed Tristan show us the slightly wrinkled temple which screams “dead sexy” in the worst (or best) way while he gently eases Peta across the floor as if she weighs no more than a tiny, delicate flower.
This waltz seriously made us take a hard look at ourselves and in return, we decided that we to had to be Peta, and that’s no easy feat. To make things easier, we're out buying our frosted hair bleach, and Suzanne Somers Thighmaster Gold right now.
Just for the record, that whole Thighmaster thing is innately dangerous; it requires that you squeeze your thighs together so hard you could potentially lose control and propel the device across the room where it would smash your tv and/or computer screen and keep you from watching DWTS on Monday and Tuesday nights or even worse, it could fly straight up and smack you right in the nose (true story on this). In addition, the transformation of Shakes from brunette to blonde would probably result in her hair turning to straw instead of a soft, lustrous blonde, and SWAT’s change from whatever-color-it-is-this-week would make her unrecognizable to her husband and kids. So yeah, the waltz is dangerous on so many levels. This many challenges are unhealthy.
3. The Flash Gordon “Made me glue fake hair to my husband's chest” Paso Doble
First of all, who really cares about Flash Gordon? Apparently we should because in spite of Flash having some issues (basically nobody really knows much about him in the first place), it apparently never occurred to any of us that a graceful ballroom and Latin dancer could suddenly become both a superhero and a very dangerous King of the Universe until Tristan sauntered down those stairs as the infamous Flash himself. It was probably because of the danger inherent in that red satin jacket that made us stand up and take notice. How could it be dangerous? Well, Superman had a cape with a big S on it, and he was dangerous. Tristan, I mean, Flash, had a red jacket with Flash or a lightning bolt or something on it. We’ve decided that this Flash is a distant relative of Superman because they both can do it all. I’m fairly sure Superman even shared his special secrets with Mr. Dancing Flash himself. Superman changed from his nerd suit in the phone booth; the King of the Universe was comfortable enough in his masculinity to wear red satin without a shirt and still look like he owned the world. He didn’t need a bulletproof vest or other such nonsense which also concerns us. What if the bullet (or perhaps the bull himself) bounced off his chest, ricocheted off, and hit an innocent bystander (like one of us). Fortunately, it didn’t happen. Back to the chest and how that helped to captivate millions. In fact, Flash owned us to the extent that it made every one of us want to glue fake fuzz onto our husband’s chests as they lay snoring away. Scary and dangerous.
We all know women have the brains and should rule the world, but in this case, we are going to make an exception and allow this King of the Universe, dangerous though he is, to take over.
4. Watch Me ‘Walk This Way’ Dance or Who Do I Watch – Tristan or David Garrett?
This dance might as well have dangerous in the title because there are so many elements of danger that snuck in that it might as well be called “How to properly do danger on the dance floor.” First of all, the male pro costumes are enough to give the average woman a stroke. Black pants, black vest, no shirt, etc. etc. Stroke. Or at the very least, a heart episode. Thanks to the genius of Mr. Garrett, the music was so fast and frenetic that we weren’t sure where to look first. Or second. Or third. It looked like some Paso, some Rumba, some who-knows-what-else because the brain got muddled and fried and required substantial therapy just to kind of get back to normal. The feet were flying, the arms were a blur, the hips were rotating with razor sharp precision, and it was impossible to properly comprehend what was happening at any given moment. But it was the rapid-fire drop to the ground by Tristan (we mean, by Tristan, Kiki, and Teddy) that made the size of the pupils enlarge so much that an emergency visit to the ophthalmologist was necessary. Dangerous? Oh yeah.
Just to be clear, I couldn’t walk that way if I rehearsed 12 hours a day, 9 days a week. All I would get would be leg cramps, tired feet, and a potential candidacy for hip replacement.
You probably think that this one is a joke and that we only included it to see if you were paying attention so that you could pass the pop quiz we’re giving at the end of this blog. (Okay, so there’s really no pop quiz. Don’t be too disappointed). Then after you realized we really are serious, you probably immediately wanted to ask the following: How could a dance to anything by Hanson possibly be dangerous? Ridiculous, you say. Impossible, you add. There is no way, you insist.
Au contraire, my lovelies. There was nothing teeny-bopperish at all about this little number, and your life was in peril whether you want to admit it or not. This was so full of sexy, delicious hip action that I’m surprised my eyeballs are still attached within their dainty little sockets. Mr. MacManus showed a surprising side of himself – the arrogant, cocky leader who took over the dance without being a showoff. How high did your blood pressure go during that dance? It’s a good thing I have my own blood pressure monitoring system so that I could keep a close eye on things and know exactly when to take deep, calming breaths.
Then there was that other little issue. How odd that Taylor Hanson tried to pull off the boyfriend suspenders pre-Tristan? Cute, but not cute enough.
But the unexpected danger lies in the burning question that results from watching this dance. What if all those Hanson fans from the early days decided to become Tristan fans and started to stampede the stage.? Or what if they began to scream like teenyboppers chasing after Justin Bieber and knocked over Tristan’s tour bus in their frenzy. (Not that Tristan has a tour bus, but I say it’s always a possibility one needs to consider so we need to be prepared).
You see, the greatest danger is unexpected danger. This one had lots of that. You have to be prepared for the danger.
6. Dance to the Music and hopefully live to tell about it
This song was a relic from the 70s, but Tristan somehow managed to prove that disco isn’t dead after all. Well, disco is dead, but this whole delicious concoction of fast-paced, jaw-dropping athleticism and finesse made us think of lots more dancing, and for all we care, it could be disco style with platform shoes, bell-bottom polyester pants, and Tristan with a mullet. (Okay, that’s going too far, we agree. It’s dangerous just thinking about it). Remember that little segment where Tristan was surrounded by the troupe, and there was all that fist pumping, power brandishing, and hip thrusting stuff going on? It has already led to dangerous consequences. In fact, I already ordered a stripper pole for my living room as a direct result of that dance. Now besides the whole health risk just from watching the dance (it affects the cardiac and respiratory systems substantially), it gives a woman all kinds of naughty thoughts. Then there’s the use of the stripper pole. How could twirling around the pole and hanging upside down not be dangerous? To say it is tricky is a gross understatement.
This dance is just an accident waiting to happen.
7. The Charm-Chocked Cha-Cha aka The Coma Commodore
Deception is always dangerous, and all that charm, charisma, and deceptive innocence are not only unsettling but also put each of us in peril. Nothing is as simple as an innocuous little Cha-Cha. Not in the case of this Cha-Cha anyway. The suspenders have hypnotic powers, the hip action lulls you into a false sense of security, and it all goes downhill from there. When one’s eyes become permanently glued to the young man, unable to be averted, this obviously means that a coma is imminent. Comas are dangerous, and medical research has proven that the most dangerous of all comas are those caused by sexy, seemingly innocent dudes in suspenders who have perfect camera angles on their side. Ask any doctor and they'll tell you - these types of comas are the worst. We really wouldn't just make this stuff up...much. The thing that really sealed the deal was newbie pro Tristan getting away with a little butt swat to Ms. Grace. How Nancy didn't have coma trouble like we did is a mystery, but then again, she claims to have been unaware of said little swat on the backside. But we saw it immediately, and we also were well aware of the sexy tie loosening gesture, and dance ending moment when he nimbly slid down onto his knees and landed at her feet. Nurse! I think we just flat-lined!
I also blew out a kneecap when trying to imitate that move. Danger, danger, danger.
8. All the Right Moves- The understatement of the year
Formidable, menacing, dangerous. This was one of the most under-estimated dances that featured Tristan in any capacity. Don't let the pretty costumes fool you. This dance looks like it should be a no-brainier - just a simple troupe dance to put in some filler while One Republic belts out one of their greatest songs to date. Right? WRONG.....cue annoying game show buzzer please. This dance, although seemingly a troupe dance, was once again a Tristan and Peta camera close-up love fest. The moves were tricky, difficult, and precise, and I really, really wanted to try what I call the ‘leap of faith’ move where Tristan is alone on the dance floor and Peta somehow leaped into his one-armed embrace and without hesitating, he managed to spin with her in that same one-armed embrace. Whatever it was, it was scary hot, and I know I’d be terrified to try it. But because it was also very hot, this means you probably wanted to get a closer look so you press your face up against your tv which meant you might have received excessive doses of some kind of radiation or something which means that you will then probably start to glow in the dark (at least that’s what my mother used to tell me). At the very least, you might have been exposed to an excessive amount electric energy generated by those two hot pros when they dance. Risky risky risky.
9. Should Have Been A Cowboy
Cowboys are dangerous. Haven’t you ever read a romance novel? These good ole boys are capable of anything. They are strong, virile, and heartbreakers. That alone is dangerous. But you throw in a bit of the Irish in said cowboy, and you’ve got more than trouble. You have disaster.
It’s simple because first of all your brain is having trouble processing the concept of Tristan taking on the cowboy persona – the whole denim, denim, denim and boots concept, but guess what? It works. The dude not only captures the essence of western dancing (thanks Azline Dancer for your expertise) but he also manages to go for the unexpected – he takes on the cowboy persona and had he been speaking to us, I would have expected nothing less than for him to be talking like Nancy (or us – since we’re both Southern belles – Shakes by birth, SWAT by geography). And therein lies the danger! Tristan speaking in a soft southern drawl with a hint of the brogue would do us in (so would a brogue with a hint of a soft southern drawl). But forget the cowboy-speak and think of the danger within the dance. His kicks were higher than the rest (what if his boot flew off and smacked Tom in the noggin?). His feet were faster. (What if his partner couldn’t keep up and she inadvertently tripped?) His hips were fluid. (Lethal weapons right there). There you have it. This is one dangerous dilemma and one dangerous dance.
Imagine the hearts broken by this rugged cowboy and the required therapy that would inevitably follow. Imagine all the women who would have to settle for second-best when they realize they couldn’t have this cowboy. The possibilities are endless and frightening.
10. Mr. Know It All – is a sexy beast
Mr. Know it all, well ya-think you know it all, dont ya? Um, we’re pretty sure Tristan does know it all in this little scenario. In addition, sexy beasts tend to know it all too, and that is why they are so dangerous - they don’t know the power of their own raw sensuality. Is there any question that he has it in surplus in this dance? This dance was particularly perilous because it was a building storm – starting with a gentle breeze, escalating slowly through thunderclouds and powerful gusts to end up a gosh darn tsunami that takes out everything in its path. First off as we've said numerous times, we’re really not talking literally about physically dangerous activities for the most part, but when you are Kym Johnson and the fringe on your dress is roughly the length of rock climbing rope, we fear for what could possibly happen. Especially if a tsunami does occur. Neither here nor there however, the real danger going on in this sultry gasp-worthy nuzzle party that Tristan and Kym did a little too easily is the fact that oxygen refused to travel to my brain for a total of three minutes straight. Yes, Miss Clarkson's voice is sultry enough to make me hold my breath for a mere few seconds, but that raspy soulful melody, coupled with various rumba moves, and Tristan's inability to be ever be anything other than red-hot just makes our brain cells evaporate ever so quickly. Especially when ABC is so hell bent on putting the idea in our heads that Tristan and Kelly Clarkson could possibly one day be dancing the same way during a future season of DWTS. Where's the oxygen tank? I seemed to have forgotten how to breath. Between the metaphorical tsunami and the holding the breath thing, there are all kinds of troubles brewing in the danger zone.
11. You Make Me Feel . . .Like Swinging from the Ceiling...and Re-arranging My Dining Room Chairs
Now this one is tricky. It is dangerous because of the huge element of surprise. The sharp contrast between the smooth-talking, seductive, ladykiller from Mr. Know It All takes the element of danger to a whole new level. All of a sudden we have another bad boy who was involved in a dance tug-of-war with his lady. That is always dangerous. This is a virtual tornado of emotion and power, turbulence and desire. All of that mixed up stuff is never good. It causes accelerated heart rates and other medical issues to occur, but more than that, it makes grown women want to dress up in costumes and shoes similar to those worn by Kym and Sharna and swing from the ceiling on a rope to land on the dance floor whereupon we would then push Kym aside and proceed to dance with Tristan. The problem is that the shoes alone would cause a broken ankle, the dress would probably result in being arrested for something being exposed that shouldn’t be exposed, and the swinging from the ceiling could never, ever end well.
My dining room chairs are also a problem. Yes, I said it, my dining room chairs. They are currently placed in the middle of my bedroom, and they are there to land upon once I swing from the ceiling and let go. It’s practice. If you're still confused as to why I have my chairs in the middle of my bedroom then watch the beginning of the dance. What is Tristan sitting upon while Kym runs her fingers through his lustrous bedhead before he leaps up and takes charge of her? ....Um yeah....a chair. All of this is just because of a dance. Dangerous, I say. What if you practice swinging from the ceiling and miss? What if you run into the chairs in the middle of the night? Think broken legs, smashed chairs, etc. Then you’d have to get rid of the broken chairs. Does your garbage guy pick up furniture? Mine doesn’t. Another problem. You’d leave the chairs at the curb and some poor doggy out for his morning stroll might get hurt climbing on them. Or they would contaminate the environment. This could never end well. All because of a dance.
12. Paso With Nicole and Sympathy for the Devil
Any dance that begins with a standoff and a stare down has metaphorical hot potato written all over it. This is kind of like the Gunfight at the OK Corral without the weapons and the corral. We have to admit that we weren’t thinking much about a bullfight and the whole killing the bull and/or cape but instead we were watching all that building passion and intensity and wondering when in the heck something was going to give. All that action/reaction that was going on had to come to a big novelesque climax (don’t you love how we just make up words?) Anyway, we were right. “El matador” took down everything and everybody – the bull, the cape, and anything in his path. Frankly, we were surprised that the running of the bulls at Pamplona wasn’t part of it. That would have been a fitting ending wouldn’t it? Heck, we don’t think that this matador would even bother to get out of the way of all of that bull – the critters would probably be afraid of him because the fact is that this macho dude is just flat out scary. Wouldn’t you think him to be a little bit dangerous if you ended up dead in the floor? Hellllooooo.
Personally, we don't think Nicole ever had a fighting chance in her little run-in with His Matadoriness. Straight out of the gate, our matador of matadorial splendor....matadored his way rather forcefully into alpha male status here, and wowed the pants off of us mere, swooning peasants. And what is more dangerous than losing your pants in public? ‘Nuff said.
A special thanks goes out to the research assistance provided by our own Azline Dancer who made sure that we knew what we were talking about when referring to coconuts and seashells. No coconut bras were inadvertently used in this blog, thanks to her. Love you, AD!
We’ve said it before, and we’re saying it again. Each time Tristan MacManus dances, he performs on a stage and becomes a character. Every dance he choreographs or participates in tells a story with a developing plot: introduction, rising action, climax, falling action, and conclusion. Thus, he is an actor who is simultaneously telling a story and playing a role on the stage, and through the choreography, intricacy of movements, appropriate facial expressions, and unexpected but perfectly chosen costumes, he transforms himself into someone else. We could blither on about the perfection and elegance of his dancing, his beautiful lines, and unbelievable extension because every movement has a purpose in the development of the character. Sure, we could do that, but we’re not going to. We’re going to give you our take on the characters – where they come from, where they are going, and what inspires them. We’re exploring the inner psyche of these strong, handsome men (even the creepy ones), and we’re going to show you just where Tristan got his inspiration for his Season 13 characters. Okay, so we have no idea where he got his inspiration, and we are absolutely making every bit of this up. We took a lot of creative liberties, poked a lot of fun, and went way out there for most of these. Writers do that, so write away we did.
We even wondered which character was closest to the real Tristan and after much discussion and debate, we decided that we have absolutely no clue about the real Tristan, and that’s not important. What’s important is that he managed to convince us that he is the character he portrays; he’s just that good.
So for the next few minutes (or hours, depending on how much we have to say), we invite you to explore the characters from Season 13 – the characters as only they can be portrayed by the delicious Irishman, Tristan MacManus.
The character created here is a flirty, naughty rascal: he is unpretentious and seemingly shy, but we know better. We might have misjudged him at the beginning because he appears to be a little reluctant to go after what he wants, but it takes mere seconds for him to begin to relentlessly pursue the beautiful woman he desires. Meet Bentley Bumtapper. He’s charming, he’s charismatic, he’s handsome, and he’s deceptively innocent because he wears boyfriend suspenders that would look silly on anybody else on the planet. From beginning to end, young Bentley charms his audience, and women of all ages decide he is the one they want. He embodies both the seemingly shy young man and the naughty rascal - all because of a damn pair of suspenders. They are probably magical or something because they have hypnotized the majority of women in America (and elsewhere) into thinking they are 21 again. Yeah, us included. So Bentley, you might have been on your knees at the end of that delicious performance, but we know it’s just part of your charm.
He is light on his feet; fun and flirty is his middle name. Think Bewitching in Brown. Brown isn’t usually a color I would associate with fun and flirty but the costume’s sheen was nearly hypnotic. Think a leading man, a genuine movie star who is secure enough in his masculinity to walk the red carpet in that brown suit exuding self-assurance, confidence, and sex appeal. Think about magnetic presence, and it all makes sense. We don’t need to go on and wax poetic here because the more you see him, the more you love him. He has a spring in his step like no other and he probably wrote the syllabus for Quickstep 101 through Advanced Quickstep Instruction. You get it. Nobody does it better.
Here we have the sprightly, yet precise and unassuming ladykiller. With lightning fast feet and posture that never, ever diminishes, he makes us gasp. We give you the leading man, the character who brings it beginning to end, the handsome traveler who isn’t afraid to seduce on the dance floor as he dips the leading lady waaaaaay back and reaches for her thigh and pulls it seductively – north, shall we say. Okay, we’re done now. Ladies and Gentlemen, we give you Twinkle Toes himself. He’s dashing, he’s debonair, and he is occasionally known as Dash Debonair. His stage name is T. Quick MacFeet.
He is as smooth as silk. He propels his partner across the floor with such ease, grace, and finesse that she feels as though she is dancing on the lightest of clouds. He takes her to a time gone by when the waltz was pure and technically sound, and bumping and grinding weren’t in the dance history books. (Not that there’s anything wrong with bumping and grinding, but it really doesn’t work well with the waltz). The ice blue of the costumes is reminiscent of the sky of a beautiful day with the wispiest of clouds dancing across the heavens.
Every move is precise to the nth degree, and he wrote the textbook entitled “How to Arouse, Tease, and Seduce Through the Slow Waltz.” Do you remember when we mentioned rising action, climax, and falling action? It’s all there. Watch it and see if we’re not right. He is called Simon Suave by those who know him (no relation whatsoever to the swarmy lounge singer Rico Suave). Our ethereal Simon reminds us of an angel gracing us mortals with his presence. His breathtakingly and deceptively simple steps both transfix and mesmerize. Authorities in dance have nicknamed him Gabriel MacCloud.
This matador is able to turn chest hair haters into drooling love slaves in less than thirty seconds. Our handsome young matador gives us the obvious definition of a real man; he’s already taken care of el toro and is now taking down the pesky cape. Not the least bit intimidated by the bull or the cape, he proves his masculinity is never even remotely threatened. In fact he is so multi-dimensional and enormously talented that he has already taken the red cape from a previous bullfight (or capefight) and made it into a jacket. He made a slight error, however (fortunately for us), as he misjudged his own size and made it for a man of lesser, uh, chestliness. The thing wouldn’t even close in the front. Darn it. So we give you the Man With the Chest. He already has multiple awards to prove it. Do you get where we are going with this? He’s studly, he’s powerful, he fights that damn cape to the death. Meet Manolo (Blahnik) the Matator. By the way, this nickname comes from the fact that he is a shoe designer in his spare time when he’s not decked out in his matadorial splendor. Between the whole shoe thing and the studliness of the matador, he has the women all over him. All the time. They stand in line at Neiman Marcus; they stand in line at the arena.
Before we can continue with the description, we just want to say, “Ooooooo. Man, that’s hot.”
Every woman loves a little bit of the bad boy in her man, and from the opening flirtatious wink until his delicious dip of the blonde beauty at the end, we fall a little more in love with him. And isn’t that exactly what is supposed to happen? He can't help that he's a total flirt; it’s in his nature, but he really is a nice guy at heart in spite of the bad boy persona. He isn’t afraid to go after his woman and win her back; no way is his masculinity threatened by anything he does. He begs, he pleads, he embraces, he captivates as he runs his fingers through her hair, he seduces, he smiles, he cajoles, and he wins. He likes to break up to make up.....Rumba Style.
No woman can turn away from the slight twist of the lips. No woman can avoid looking into his deep seductive eyes. No woman can resist a partial trust fall into his muscular, tattooed arms even when she wants to clock him. And no woman in her right mind could possibly resist those hips. Oh crap. We mean that no woman can resist that little bit of James Dean bad boy that shows its influence in every gesture and every movement. Yeah, that’s what we meant. So we give you, the one and only J. D. Swivelhips.
This gorgeous ladies’ man can charm the pants off (not literally) of women around the globe. Okay, so maybe literally is the right word. His charisma and stage presence are unmatched. This boyish hunkster has an optimism that is contagious, an outlook on life that revolves around the beautiful woman he whisks around the dance floor with such ease. He radiates sunbeams but he also is a perfect combination of sexiness and good humor. He isn’t a Rico Suave lounge singer, nor is he a dumber than a rock bonehead. Instead, he is a red-hot blend of everything a woman wants – a bit of cheekiness, a lot of light-hearted humor, an abundance of earthy sex appeal. He isn’t afraid to show what he wants by falling at his woman’s feet or by letting the word see that even a hard floor of the castle itself, Camelot, can’t keep him down. A big whack on the head? Big deal.
Just as his character has so many different identities, so does Sir Tristan Seducesalot. It’s not surprising that Tristan indicated it was one of his favorite dances of the season because the costume had personal meaning. Then there’s that thing that he wanted to make his beautiful partner a topless mermaid with seashells being the only adornment on, uh, the front but some people would have no part of that and they had to settle for rhinestones on fabric. And man, oh man, he is a virtuoso on the coconuts. He is obviously a beach knight with an affinity for those shells and coconuts. Please allow us to introduce you to the newly knighted Sir Tristan of the Sand.
The Group Dance
Some call him Worthington Getswhateverhewants. This rich boy knows what he wants, and he wants the best. He wants experience and sensuality. He is all about the Madame, and the Madame is all about a man with some swagger. The Madame has fine tastes as well, and when it comes to proving you've got experience and more panache than those sweet young things, she shows them how it’s done. She does an effortless handstand onto Worthington’s, uh, face, and he effortlessly flips her and tosses her lightly onto her feet. They are the perfect pair, and everyone else can eat their hearts out. And we do believe that's just what happened because everybody was envious of the man who has mastered the saunter. The man who hips spoke volumes in those, shall we say, thrusts, up to the lovely ladies. The man and the character who controlled the performance beginning to end and made us all screech, “I’M YOURS” as he raises his arms up joyfully into the air.
It seems only fitting that we call this fascinating man Mick Swagger.
This seriously alpha-male leading man is the embodiment of a scary dude we like to call “The Devil you Say”. Better known as Mephistopheles from the Faust legend, this isn’t quite the whole story. Did you think he was always like that? He’s really Leroy from Mississippi and is Leroy by day, Mephistopheles by night. Our country boy Leroy had a run-in with a big bad voodoo daddy who gave Leroy some magical powers. Even though he got just a little “badder” (yeah, we know it should say ‘worse’ instead of “badder” but it doesn’t have the same ring to it) during the daylight hours. So now as each day progresses, he develops some fierce foot work and some major flicks and kicks. Our demon uses this to his advantage and lures the women with his devilishly alarming speedy feet and his seductive jive moves. When a man moves that fast, there’s no stopping him.
And who would want to stop him anyway? We call him “The Devil Who Went Dancin’.”
In this Crazy Like A Fox Team Tango, we bring you our Straight Jacket Lady Killer (S. J. Ladykiller, for short), and this dude is crazy. There is just no delicate way to say it. After all, his everyday attire consists of a straight jacket, and while it is quite fashionable and attractive on those individuals requiring it, it is still a straight jacket and just a bit alarming and over-the-top for everyday wear. The bottom line is that he’s a lady killer. Probably literally. Maybe we’ll just leave him to his tango before he goes back to his padded room with his little friends Nutty Nancy, Kooky Kym, Daffy David, and Juiced JR. We’re not sure what landed them all in the asylum, but we do know that he went crazy after being dumped by Nutty Nancy and in his perpetual delusional state, he thinks he’s still dancing with her. And not dancing the hokey pokey or the chicken dance either, but the Tango????? He refuses to tell us his real name, and we’ve kind of gotten used to him like this, and we’re afraid of you, Mr. S. J. Ladykiller. But you’re still hot.
Sexy, seductive, and sizzling red hot, we give you 0014. No, no, no, you say. The super spy was 007 as in Bond. James Bond. Yeah, okay, that’s fine for your typical everyday spy dude, but our spy is 0014. Why, you ask? It’s simple. He’s not 007 because he’s twice as hot as Bond. James Bond. He is twice as deadly, twice as pissed off by the fact that the Naughty Lady of Shady Lane wasn’t exactly eager to run off and be naughty with him, yet he remained twice as determined to win her over. In fact, the mystery continues as the dancing drama unfolds. He becomes the aggressor and the seducer, but then the pretty one does the same. Hmmmm. This is a conundrum. I think that little drama is still in progress.
By the way, he needs no other name. Just 0014 will do. We wondered what name he uses when signing his checks to pay bills and file his tax returns, and then we remembered. 0014 is a super spy and always carries around big wads of cash. It’s his way. All that other stuff is for regular people.
MyGoldSpatsLookBetterthanYourSpats is his name. This name identifies and describes him because his gold spats do look better than, well, those other spats. He is a distant cousin of our quickstep friend T. Quick MacFeet (Dash Debonair), but this one has the crazy legs in the family. We mean really, really serious crazy legs. Kind of like Gumby but with style, grace, and finesse, if that’s possible. Some call him T. Jaunty Jive, his partner calls him The Red Hot Jive (and love) Machine. The rest of us just wonder how in the blazes his feet and legs can really move that fast. He’s way more of a wild child than cousin Dash – perfectly symbolized by the confidence exemplified by his stark black shirt and pants worn with just the right touch - the loosely draped gold tie. Not just any man can pull that off. Let’s not forget how he fearlessly leaps over his golden lady and beckons her to follow by crooking his finger at her while swaying his hips seductively. He flings the sweat from his brow with the back of his hand and captivates his woman – and the audience – with a remarkable jive performance. Mr. GoldSpats,etc. is a sexy and spontaneous ladies’ man who can think, literally, on his feet.
And there you have it. The characters from Season 13 as created by Tristan. Nobody described it better than Nancy herself when she said these words about her DWTS partner:
..“handsome, but, when the music starts, it’s like someone sprinkled magic on him and he makes a complete transformation.”
[SHAKESPEARE] My grandmother always taught me to behave properly. She said something about never putting my elbows on the table, and never wearing white shoes after Labor Day, and she would remind me to always, always act like a lady. I’m fairly sure that I live by those creeds. Maybe. Sort of. Sometimes. And I may or may not make history, but I’ll at least have a whale of a good time.
I’ve been a grown-up (kind of) for a while, and I really do know how to behave. Honestly I do, but there is something about Tristan MacManus that brings out the best in me – or maybe it’s the worst - I’m not sure, but regardless, I’m blaming Tristan. It’s all his fault, no doubt about it. I figured this all out, oh, about 8 seconds into the Cha Cha.
He makes me misbehave just as it’s his fault that I ended up setting up way too many voting accounts over on ABC, voted half the night (or all night) every Monday, put up with ridiculous numbers of equally misbehaving women in my home every Monday just to make them vote for Tristan and Nancy, and then I posted nonsense all over the ABC message board before moving over here and posting more nonsense. The burning question is: What exactly makes us misbehave? Let's just say that I have some theories. Which of these could it be?
*The Snuffleupagus eyelashes?
*The slightly crooked grin that he showed us so often during Season 12?
*The ladykiller “come at me, sweetheart” smile that made us all go into recurring epidemics of Thud-itis?
*The sexier-than sin Irish brogue that would be sexy even if he said, “Hey, Shakes, bring me the Doritos, would ya?”
*The incredible good looks, charm, wit, magnetism, talent, etc. etc.?
*The gorgeous body? Nah, I'm not that shallow [*cough cough*]
It is all of these things that send us right to the dungeon for time-outs, to the gutter to commiserate with others about our perhaps ‘impure thoughts’, or to the MML forum to blither on and on and on about how wonderful Tristan is. Too much? Nope. Why, you ask? Because Tristan deserves it all. He deserves the accolades, the attention, and yes, even the devotion of a bunch of misbehaving women. He deserves it because he is gorgeous, talented, charismatic, and charming, so ultimately, all this misbehavior can be traced directly back to him. So, yeah, it is all his fault.
When one 90 second dance makes a grown woman (married and with a bunch of kids) go all oooey-gooey, become tongue tied without managing to speak anything remotely articulate, and practically count the seconds until the next pro dance with a Tristan sighting, then the blame can be traced directly back to the source. Tristan – the Reluctant Heartthrob – MacManus. Why? Because of all that good stuff going on: his gorgeous self, his looks into the camera (which incidentally I’m positive are directed at me exclusively so back off, ladies), his perfect, pure moves, and his wicked, wicked sense of humor – all of which directly caused the following reactions to his dances:
*We swooned and went “awwww” during the Cha-Cha (and applauded the cameraman for his brilliant work)
*We gasped at his precision in the Quickstep.
*We sighed at the beauty and elegance of the Slow Waltz.
*We had to pop our eyeballs back into our head after the Paso – or “Bare Chest-Gate” (still recovering from that one).
*We yearned for the sexy, bad boy who knew how to wink, flirt, sway, and Rumba and not-so-secretly wished for him to wink, flirt, sway, and Rumba to and with us
*We beamed at the silly antics of Sir Tristan’s Foxtrot and smiled our best toothy grins as The Boss (move over Bruce Springsteen) owned the Broadway Group Dance
*We loved the theatrics of our heavily-made up Mephistopheles, who somehow managed the Miracle of All Jives and then teased us with his talent in the Tango – as he laid the foundation for another passionate Tango the following week.
*We drooled over our own James Bond as he pursued the bad girl, and we adored his energy and passion as he flicked and kicked and wowed the audience in the instant jive.
*Of course, we almost lost consciousness as the Sexiest Man Alive (apparently People Magazine didn’t get the memo) seduced, pursued, and won Kym in “Mr. Know It All”, and we almost jumped through our tv screen when he underwent another magical transformation in the Cobra Starship performance.
And this, my friends, doesn’t even include the pro group dances and all of the magnificent troupe dances that showcased Tristan in Season 12 – performances which made us all lose any attempt at maintaining common sense or reason.
So it seems obvious. It’s Tristan’s fault that we aren’t always well-behaved. It is inevitable, but I don’t mind one bit because the way I see it, Tristan is going to make DWTS history, and the naughty MacManiacs are just as much a part of that history as the Naughty Lady of Shady Lane. After all, according to Nancy, Tristan is "the best choreographer in the world" and "the best dancer in the world," and that means some wonderful history will be made. See y’all in the gutter and the dungeon.
[SWAT] I'm just gonna come out and say it. It's all Tristan's fault. So what if we as humans have free will and can supposedly control our own actions? When it comes to Tristan MacManus, all universal truths go straight out the universal window. Anyone who disagrees with me obviously has never been a MacManiac. Tristan makes even the most normal of us all turn into a drooling lusty wenches. I am going to even suggest that Tristan send his decorator over to the dungeon to spruce it up a bit for us. (And since he probably doesn’t have a decorator, he can come over himself to help out). We all have been spending copious amounts of time there in the past few weeks and our numbers have grown so much in the dungeon that we've even had blueprints drawn to include an elevator, swimming pool and fully-lit disco floor in the manner of Saturday Night Fever. Once these upgrades to the dungeon are complete, I fully intend on sending Tristan the bill. Why? Because it's his fault, of course.
If it sounds like I'm upset with Tristan for flinging all of us into fits of silliness every time we talk about him, then it's quite the contrary. Being a MacManiac rocks! Never have I ever had so much fun just sitting at my computer and bonding with other lusty wenches who all are in the same green sparkly boat as me. We can all row in unison together while keeping the beat to "Always look on the bright side of life". It just means that we'll get across the pond faster.
Yes, we are a rare breed, but we are also unwavering in our support for Tristan. We are calculated and focused, and we have no problem going to great lengths to make sure Tristan wins the Sexiest Male Pro poll, the Favorite Male Pro poll, the Male Pro With The Best Chest poll, etc., and we don’t stop until Tristan owns the titles. We know what is what, how to get the job done, and how to get results. Oh yeah. We also function as a team. That is a big deal.
We tend to babble endlessly about Tristan's sexy boyfriend suspenders or giggle like fangirls (only sometimes) when we see him in a new video, but again, that's not our fault. Tristan is just so simply delectable and irresistible that he makes us this way. We are a little bit harmlessly crazy while also being giddy and blushingly obvious in our desire to hear a little more of his Irish Bogue.
I have no idea what I just said just now...but I think that's how we all feel sometimes when it comes to Tristan. It takes a strong woman to be a MacManiac...and it's all his fault, for getting us there.
[Shakespeare] – Disclaimer: SWAT wrote that while having a temperature of 103 but it was so darned bizarre and amusing that I left it alone – except for the stuff that made no sense whatsoever. The green sparkly boat concerned me and the fact that she didn’t mention the chest was almost worth an intervention, but I figured since I mentioned it in my portion, I was sort of helping her out. It's that whole teamwork thing again.
[Shakespeare] It is not easy being a true leading man in Hollywood, and it is probably even more difficult to be one in the ballroom. The problem is this: in order to be a leading man, you have to be an actor. In other words, the same “O” or “fish face” just won’t cut it week after week. The leading man has to be versatile, multi-dimensional, charismatic, and selfless. Where am I going with this, you ask? Straight to the ballroom on Dancing With the Stars. For 12 seasons, I watched the same faces, the same choreography, and the same “I’m trying to look sexy and failing miserably” expressions and mannerisms from assorted male pros who shall remain nameless. In Season 12, I realized that there just might be leading man material on DWTS after all, and by week 1 of Season 13, we had a clear winner.
Surely, there are others, you say. Well, kind of. I can count on one hand the number of male pros (plus one celebrity) who managed to be leading men while not looking like idiots as they tried to express surprise, love, lust, anguish, passion, and intensity while dancing. Please allow me to present these pros along with one honorable mention candidate which takes us up to six whopping leading men.
Honorable Mention: Gilles Marini – Okay, so he wasn’t a pro, but when he did a perfect Argentine Tango in Week 4 of Season 8, Carrie Ann gushed that it was difficult to tell the pro from the celebrity. At that point, I knew that we had a good one. So Gilles is my honorary pro, but he is also definitely leading man material. Did you see him in the Sex and the City movie? Okay, so maybe that’s not what made him a leading man, but it was all kinds of distracting. And he was a leading man on DWTS.
5. Maks – He’s got it. He knows how to use it. Yeah, there’s not much else to say here. Maks can play almost any role. I just don’t think Maks believes he can play any role, which is why he rips his shirt off so frequently. Not that I’m complaining, but for me, it is the one thing that makes him #5 and not higher on my list. A true leading man doesn’t need the gimmicks (but he is closer than the ones omitted here).
4. Damian Whitewood – We didn’t see nearly enough of him during his one season on DWTS, but he brought enough of the WOW factor to convince me that he is definitely LMM (leading man material). Watch him in Burn the Floor-Floor Play Watch him with Pamela Anderson. He doesn’t overshadow, he doesn’t monopolize the performances, and he doesn’t deliberately divert attention to himself.
3. Jonathan Roberts – He has IT, and that smooth demeanor is leading man material. The man performs the most exquisite waltzes I have ever seen, and his transformation from Jonathan, the pro, to Jonathan, the leading man, is pure magic happening before your eyes.
Now we get to our top two leading men, and you might be surprised at my choices (or at least surprised by one of them).
2. Alec Mazo – Remember him? Alec Mazo was a true leading man in virtually every sense of the word. He has IT in abundance and uses all of it, and in almost every dance (notice, I said ‘almost’), he becomes a leading man. He has the charm, the charisma, the selflessness, and the aura of mystery that any true leading man must possess.
1. Tristan MacManus – The leading man extraordinaire. He brings it. He uses it. He bewitches with it, he teases us with it, and he captivates his audience. THAT is a leading man. He dances to perfection without relying on gimmicks. He never showcases his own abilities at the expense of his partner, nor does he hide his partner’s technical imperfections beneath an excessive yardage of fabric. He is confident, and he transmits that confidence to his partner. His expressions show the skill of an actor and the versatility of the most well-trained thespian. In every dance, he becomes the character, and every step he choreographs has its own purpose, just as every line of dialogue is necessary to a well-executed drama or comedy. No filler, no waste, no fluff. He is one heck of a leading man.
Let’s talk Tristan the Leading Man. The Cha-Cha gave us the younger leading man, who was fun and flirty but confident enough to pursue the older woman. The Quickstep presented us with the suave, easy-going and light-footed but very masculine character. The Waltz took us into an era of romance and beauty, Tristan's skill leading his partner into a beautiful place. What can I say about the Paso? In his battle with the cape, he fought, dueled, and parried, and did so with intensity and passion – believable passion and intensity. (Not the kind that some of our pros attempt – a grimace or distorted expression that makes them look, well, constipated, for lack of a better word.)
On to our Bad Boy Leading Man. Yeah, the 80s Bad Boy had a heart of gold and might be a bit of a flirt, but was dead serious about his woman. He was the kind of leading man every woman wants but avoids. Moving on to our theatrical Sir Tristan. He was light on his feet, but a handsome devil with a winning smile – a hero was perfectly willing to rescue the lovely maiden. It didn’t hurt that he was willing to fall at her feet after one lovely little kiss.
Was there ever a better leading man that showed up in the Broadway- themed dance? For this performance, there might as well have been a sign over the dance floor that said, Starring – the Incomparable Tristan MacManus. That leading man stole the freaking show and the hearts of every woman in the ballroom, those in the tv audience, and those of us who still can’t get over how he literally owned the performance. He did not have to showboat or overdance. His natural grace and talent combined with his ability to transform himself into a character; this skill ultimately defined that leading man.
Who knew that Mephistopheles could be a leading man? But he sure was – it was all in the control and power, the skillful manner of maintaining the execution of the dance, and the confidence he was able to project while in ridiculous make-up. The same holds true with the escapees from the asylum. I wasn’t frightened by his character, but I was surely intrigued, and isn’t that exactly what a leading man should do? Finally in week eight, we saw the “TristanMacManus Is Definitely A Leading Man Tango.” His entire demeanor conveyed the confidence and romantic aura of a leading man with none of the overt arrogance and cockiness that one might expect. Instead, we saw passion and persuasion, temptation and titillation, sexuality and sensuality. Oh boy, did we. [insert fanning self emoticon here]. And finally, I knew immediately when I saw the Instant Jive costume that we had a bona fide Leading Man. Confident and unafraid to take the lead, exert control, and let his sense of humor come out, he won our hearts all over again.
Tristan played a role in every dance, but he also became a leading man in every dance. He ruled the dance floor while never needing words to express himself. The barely discernible tilt of the head, slight motion of the hands, gentle sway of the hips, or simple lift of the chin said volumes. He might have been a first year pro on DWTS but he is clearly a seasoned veteran leading man.
[SWAT] A friend taking private ballroom dance lessons once told me that the best feeling in the world occurred when her partner took charge and led her around the dance floor. He was not overly demanding, but he was obviously still in control. His aura of confidence boosted hers, and that made her look good. That, to me, is the essence of the Leading Man.
Her words have stayed with me, especially since I can now relate them to one particularly sexy Irish ballroom dancer. Tristan was the first pro to come to mind as leading man material, and quite honestly, I turned into a puddle of goo as the thought of Tristan being my partner and really “taking charge” of my mediocre dancing skills.
So what makes him a leading man? I could write a novel about it, however, in an effort to avoid making this blog post roughly the length of War and Peace, I am going to concentrate on two reasons why Tristan deserves the leading man award: his ability to earn trust, and the fact that he plays to his partner’s strengths without making himself the center of attention.
Do you remember during rehearsals for Week 2 when the Quickstep got the best of Nancy? After some minor bickering and grandstanding from both of them, Tristan came to her rescue and talked her out of her funk. He told her that they were a team, even though it was obvious that his experience made him the one in charge. At that moment, Nancy trusted Tristan, even though her own self-confidence was lacking. One might even put this moment in the chivalry record-books, but then again, shouldn't a good leading man be chivalrous? Tristan became her Leading Man, and man, did he ever lead. He did it without the enormous ego that seems to plague DWTS pros season after season. Tristan is not a selfish performer. Read on.
When Tristan dances he showcases his partner. He is there to lead and support, but it is always in conjunction with highlighting his partner. Think back to his performances with Kym Johnson – those in Pittsburgh and the now famous sizzler “Mr. Know It All” dance. She is always wearing the typical ballroom flashy ensemble, but do you see Tristan ripping his shirt off to get attention? He is merely clad in a very basic black on black ensemble, and I believe this is done in order to showcase his partner. No leading man purposely draws the attention to himself; he naturally does so by using his charm, charisma, and selflessness to endear himself to others. Similarly, Tristan is always willing to give away top billing, while still remaining in control of the choreography and the performance. Tristan's magnetism becomes evident as he never blends in, yet he never upstages. He doesn’t ever need to hog the camera because the camera is naturally drawn to him. It is a very delicate balance, and he seems to know just how to manage to keep that balance.
Do you remember when he said in the hostile takeover video that he “was in control of the dance floor”? It’s true. He was in control, he was always in control, and he never allowed his partner to lose control.
Tristan is the consummate leading man.
That whole Design a Dance thing is clearly bothering all of us; this became apparent through our relentless efforts to make sure Tristan won the Wet Paint poll for Favorite DWTS Pro of 2011 and with the Remember DAD slogan which continually echoes through the Irish mist of our website. So we (SWAT and Shakespeare) are giving you Design a Dance – the one that should have been instead of the one that we saw (watered down, in our humble opinion). We will present it all: the style, the music, the costumes, the pros, and even a little bit of choreography which we really know nothing about and with which we took a lot of creative liberties. But how is that really different from what some of the pros do anyway?
It’s going to knock your socks off, fry your computer screen, cause an increase in global warming, and ultimately melt the polar ice caps.
Therefore, we give you, Design a Dance As It Was Supposed To Be – Season 13.
The Cast of Characters (or the pros who should have won):
Male Pro – Clearly there was an error in voting tabulation that became immediately obvious when the accounting firm of Larry, Moe, and Curly mistakenly announced that the winner was some blonde dude. What is his name again? Let’s just call him Eric Rough. This mistake was appalling when you consider that the obvious unanimous winner was the first-year pro, reluctant heartthrob, and sex symbol, Irish dancer Tristan MacManus who is also known as His Heartthrobiness*(see below). Really now. Do you know anybody who voted for someone other than Tristan? We don’t.
Female Pro – There is no question that the obvious winner was the fiery redhead, the one and only gorgeous and sexy Anna Trebunskaya. Sure there were other interesting options, but for this particular one-night-only performance, it had to be our beloved Anna. Besides, she should have won Season 10 with Evan Lysacek because they were the best ever and he wasn’t a ringer and they had the best two performances all-time on the show with the Paso and Argentine Tango…… Ok, so we’re still a little bitter because Evan and Anna didn’t win and because Tristan didn’t win DAD, and so on. But anyway, back to reality (sort of).
The Dance Genre: (doesn’t that word sound better than something boring like “dance style”?)
The Paso Doble – This was the correct dance, and the voters picked the best possible choice because in incorporates so much gosh-darned sexiness, high-level passion, and turbo-charged intensity. It is perfect for Tristan and Anna.
As we deliberated our dance choices, the Rumba, Samba, Argentine Tango, and the Jive were right on the heels of the Paso. Actually, we originally wanted His Heartthrobiness and Anna to do the Jive to the song we, uh, you, selected, but it didn’t quite work with the smolder factor that we are about to unleash. Before you start whining that this is a song maybe better suited for the jive, well, yeah, that was what we thought at first – sort of – but you can’t do sensuous sexy hip grinding (yes, I said that) to the jive. So it’s a Paso, and frankly, if Tristan can do a terrific jive to The Devil Went Down to Georgia, then a Paso to our selected song is a piece of chocolate three layer cake with caramel drizzle. Crap. Off-topic again.
You will notice that the other 4 choices – Rumba, Samba, Argentine Tango, and Jive – were never shown on the ABC voting page. How odd. We are positive that we made our position very clear on this matter. These are the ones that should have been on the silly little online ballot. Period.
The criteria involved in picking our choice of dance consisted of the following: sexiness, passion, intensity, music possibilities, and whatever else we felt like factoring in like how good Tristan would look dancing the dance. Objective stuff like that. We applied the Scientific Method, did all the necessary experimentation, and came to the following conclusions.
The Samba is the Party Dance so we will save that one. The Jive is too playful for what we had in mind, and we couldn’t find good music for the Argentine Tango. The Rumba is just too darned sexy, and we were afraid that all that MacManiac THUDS heard around the world might cause an earthquake or something. Maybe next time we will select the Rooom-buh.
My Sharona by the Knack. We’re not sure why Bad Romance by Lady Gaga was mentioned as the choice for DAD (or a Paso) when this song, with its constant driving, pounding, primal beat is a much better option – it’s sexier, it’s classic, it’s better known, and it works for what we have in mind. What do we have in mind, you ask? What we have in mind is to create a dance that has an absolute overload of sensuality, more than a taste of eroticism, a bit of daring, levels of intensity that are off the charts, and more passion that you have ever seen on DWTS or, for that matter, since the beginning of time.
His Heartthrobiness will be wearing leather. What else would our Bad Boy be donning to make his statement? Black leather pants, a black leather vest, with no shirt of course. SWAT is not going to be permitted to have anything to do with his chest hair, however. I fully expect him to pull up on his Harley and take us away. I, (Shakes) insist on full bedhead, because, well, it’s hot, and it’s also necessary for the grand finale of this performance. Oh yeah. Here’s a word of warning. You might want to make sure that you’re packed and ready for the dungeon at this point, ladies.
Think about it. Tristan. Leather. Boots. No shirt (Whoop!). Tattoos on display. Yeah. Okay. I’m dying here. Hell, we both are. One of us has already passed out on the floor, and the other is sitting in a giant tub of Refreshingly Nice Irish Ice. We told you this was going to be difficult to write. You have no idea.
The lovely Anna begins as the demure, slightly intimidated young maiden wearing the corset style top (a la the Sexy Swiss Miss chick without the pigtails) with a matching black skirt that opens in the front to reveal traces of the blue lining as she is propelled across the dance floor by the matador, uh, bad boy. (It’s our Paso and the red cape is just too – bullfighterish for our tastes. This is about lust and all the good stuff, not blood and gore).
She becomes his equal when he releases the tabs of her skirt (the cape), pulls it away and leaves her in the black corset with a tiny leather skirt underneath. Her hair is up, loosely secured, just waiting for a bad boy to release the one clip holding it securely. By the way, SWAT just went THUD. (Wait while I dump some cold water on her head.)
So all of these delicious details will appear one at a time as we dance you through My Sharona.
Because we’re experts at it (*snort*), and because we want to, we are choreographing this for-the-record-books Paso. The Paso is traditionally progressive and this one is just that. It tells the progressive story of passion, desire, and lust, and the intensity level increases as the storyline develops. Through the characteristic dramatic steps, we see strength and power, pride and passion. The movements are rapid and sharp, his head high as a sign of his arrogance and dignity. But this is not your typical Paso – in this one we have give and take, action and reaction, love and lust. Our bullfighter is transformed into the Bad Boy controlled by his passion; the cape is a metaphor for the woman who bewitches him (that would be me, Shakes. I mean, Anna).
Remember that pounding, throbbing beat that leads in to the lyrics? It sets the stage for some red-hot possibilities.
From the moment the dance begins, there is no question about who is in charge. The leather-clad Bad Boy is taken with the unassuming, fiery redhead. She scoffs at his rugged bedheadedness, and he advances towards her. As he stalks his prey, she begins to weaken and finds herself succumbing to his charms. We begin with the classic Paso move where she is pulled – dragged even- across the floor (see the beginning of Evan and Anna’s Paso). He pulls her to her feet, holds her against his chest, yet she pushes him away and escapes.
“Ooh my little pretty one, pretty one
When you gonna give me some time, Sharona?
Ooh you make my motor run, my motor run,
Gun it comin’ off the line, Sharona
Never gonna stop, give it up, such a dirty mind
I always get it up for the touch of the younger kind
My-ee my-ee my-ee my-ee ahhh woo!
M M M my Sharona”
She surprisingly objects to all this male, well, studliness. They do the typical paso moves - he stalks, she balks (backs off). He captures, she flees. As the lyrics go to My-ee-my-ee-my-ee my-ee-ahhh woo, the Bad Boy Hunky Matadaor/Motorcycle Dude comes up behind her and captures his good girl in a Samba Roll. (Hey, if the blonde pro can do a non-quickstep quickstep in season 10 and get an Emmy nomination, we can do whatever we want in this Paso). Oh, you know what a Samba roll is right? Let’s get descriptive – it’s one of the sexiest moves in dance, in our opinion. Let’s just say in the version we are talking about her back is to his front and they roooollllll, arms outstretched. Sexy sexy sexy. And you're not getting any more detail. The stanza ends when she bumps him with her backside with the “ahhh woo” as she then tries to walk away. He stalks. She balks again. He stalks. She balks. He pushes his strong body into a position of dominance by leaping onto the judges’ table, where he stands with arms folded (tattoos on full display, of course), legs spread. Can you say Alpha Male?
“Come a little closer, huh, ah will ya huh
Close enough to look in my eyes, Sharona
Keepin’ it a mystery gets to me
Runnin’ down the length of my thigh, Sharona
Never gonna stop, give it up, such a dirty mind
I always get it up for the touch of the younger kind
My-ee my-ee my-ee my-ee ahhh woo!
M M M my Sharona
M M M my Sharona”
(This is vastly different from the fake DAD where the matador is up on the judges’ table with the lovely maiden crouched below him. No freaking way is our heroine going to cower. In this Paso, His Heartthrobiness is standing powerfully on the table with the beauty watching him warily. He crooks his finger at her (like he did to Nancy in the brilliant 80s Rumba), and she slinks back. He narrows his gaze; she takes another step back. He leaps down as only his manly (and nimble) self could do while stalking his prey without ever losing eye contact.
The seduction continues. When we hear “Run it down the length of my thigh,” we have our a bad boy alpha male grasp her wrists with his big hands; she wraps her leg around his hip (think the T/N Tango) and slides down the length of his thigh. Entranced, he pulls her forcefully back up, and suddenly, it’s no contest; she’s about to experience the smolder. He dips her low, pulls the clip from her hair, and while staring into her eyes, he pulls the cape off (the skirt) and she’s left with the black corset and black leather skirt. The transformation has begun.
She is now the aggressor. She advances, he retreats. He advances, she retreats. The guitar solo dominates as the dance continues with all the characteristic Paso moves- chassés, passes, drag, sur place, huit….and builds to a crescendo with the final stanza.
“When ya gonna get to me, get to me
Is it just a matter of time, Sharona
Is it just destiny, just destiny
Or is it just a game in my mind, Sharona
Never gonna stop, give it up, such a dirty mind
I always get it up from a touch of the younger kind
My-ee my-ee my-ee my-ee ahhh woo!
Ma ma ma ma ma ma ma ma
My-ee my-ee my-ee my-ee ahhh woo!
M M M My Sharona
M M M My Sharona
M M M My Sharona
M M M My Sharona” (dance ends)
He advances by marching slowly on his knees. As we get to ”never gonna stop such a dirty mind, I always get it up from a touch or the younger kind,” she turns away. He leaps to his feet and pulls her close; she pushes him away. And as the last "Ma Ma Ma Sharona" echoes, he is on his knees in front of her, face buried against her, her hands thrust in his hair (can you say, sexy bedhead?). She pulls him to his feet, their eyes lock, their breathing rapid and uneven. The bad boy dominates again as he picks her up and carries her off the dance floor to some unnamed location as the ballroomroom fades to black...
Big THUD. We just hit the floor. Again.
Sexy enough for you? We kept it sort of G-rated. This is what we should have seen in Season 13.
Passionate and intense, we took creative liberties to accentuate the passionosity, uber-intensity, bedheadedness, and offthechartssexappeal (yes, we made these words up). We also realized (after we slobbered and panted while writing this piece), that we pretty much created this scenario for Tristan to dance with us (individually, I suppose. It would be weird to have all 3 of us dancing together). Then we decided Anna looked better in a leather corset, so we let her have him because we know she’s going home to Jonathan Roberts anyway. Big of us.
*His Heartthrobiness – Title created by (and stolen from) our own Tingly Wink