Thanks to guest blogger, Em - longtime member of our website and forum - for this very astute post.
My thoughts on Dancing With the Stars – I can take it or leave it, so for now I’m leaving it.
I have watched DWTS since Season 1. Or rather I had watched DWTS since Season 1. I gradually lost interest since the Season 15 All-Stars which was surprisingly a non-event instead of a huge event, but I watched a little longer because Tristan MacManus was a pro and that was one very good reason to stay tuned in to ABC on Monday nights. I skipped Season 18 after I heard Tristan was left off the cast list (for no good reason that I could see) and nothing about that season pro or celebrity-wise was enough to make me watch. The same held true for Season 19 because Tristan was dancing on Strictly Come Dancing in the UK and that was more than enough to hold my interest because I got to see Tristan dance full numbers week after week - even after he and Jennifer Gibney were eliminated. Rewind to the days of the pro and cast reveal for Season 20. It was the same old story. I don’t like things that don’t make sense, and, in all honestly, the cast of pros, the pairings, the insanity, the ridiculousness, the overabundance of self-promotion, and the gimmicks just don’t make sense.
Here’s the thing. After seeing Tristan on Strictly Come Dancing and watching him perform every week, I could really see what DWTS is missing. Tristan brought the fun, energy, excitement, charm, and charisma and while there are some very talented individuals performing on the DWTS stage, there’s nobody that interests me enough to make me watch again. Over the last year I’ve read a lot on the MacManiacs.org forum, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and elsewhere and I know I’m not alone. As the DWTS seasons have passed, more and more of us are skipping DWTS completely or are limiting ourselves to catching the occasional 60 second performance on You Tube or Dailymotion. It’s still an okay show but it doesn’t have the same appeal for those of us who want to see certain pros who can not only dance beautifully but who can teach and who love to teach. We want to see classic Ballroom and Latin dancing with the elements of Ballroom and Latin dancing – not an excess of standing around, overdancing pros, shortened performances, and cringe-worthy gimmicks.
So I’m off the DWTS train. Of course, if my favorite dance pro (who just happens to be a magnificent teaching pro as well as one of the best entertainers of all) is brought back for a season or the 10th anniversary stand alone special, I would gladly tune in to see him. Otherwise, no thank you. DWTS is fine as it is for some people. It’s just not of interest to me without, as Nancy Grace called him, The Dance Purist. Tristan is one of those rare pros that is the complete package. So until or unless he returns, I’m perfectly content watching The Voice. Or adding a Monday night Salsa class to my already busy schedule. Or taking French lessons just for fun. You get the picture.