Monday, June 27, 2005

COLUMN: Dancing With the Stars

It's been nice knowing you, everybody. No no, the column hasn't been cancelled. But the world IS about to end. I've personally spent the last two or three days giving backward glances out the window, looking for four guys on horses to come gunning for me.

I'm thoroughly convinced that we've got little time left, as just the other day I bore witness to an event that MUST surely be a sign of the Apocalypse. That was last week, back when I was a wide-eyed, innocent youth, checking out the internet for my weekly entertainment news. That was when I saw the evil, evil truth... "Dancing With the Stars" is the #1 rated show in America.

Ummm... WHAT? That's it, then. We've reached the ultimate low. It's a pretty accepted fact that we are the leaders of the free world. And, apparantly, what the leaders of the free world like to do in their down time is watch Evander Holyfield do the tango.

The first time I saw an ad for "Dancing with the Stars," I eagerly expected the Energizer bunny to come strutting across the screen, revealing the whole ad as a ruse. Nope, it's a real show. My friends and I sat, open-mouthed, and wondered just who the person was that could have green-lighted such a travesty, and naturally, what parking lot that person would be working in six months from now once they got canned for their ignorance. But noooo. THAT would be putting too much stock in society. Instead, the show is a verified hit. Way to go, people.

Have you seen the show? They assemble some celebrities, pair them up with professional dance partners, and have them compete for a panel of overly pretentious judges and the viewing public. Unfortunately, no celebrities appeared to be available, so they brought in Evander Holyfield and Joey New Kid on the Block instead (who, incidentally, is now Joey Old Kid on the Block.) People, this is the loosest definition of "stars" we've seen yet on reality TV.

ABC's ads have now been changed to include the phrase, "Don't miss the show that's captivated America and gotten everyone talking!" EVERYONE? Really?

I'm trying in my mind to figure out what these water-cooler discussions could possibly be about:

"Gee, did you watch 'Dancing With the Stars' last night?"
"Boy, that Evander sure can do the cha-cha."

Captivating, eh? How can you as a viewer keep your focus on this program without nodding off within 10 minutes? I tried! It's impossible.

Then it hit me. I basically did this whole monologue here for my co-workers, and suddenly the females in the room rose up en masse to properly lecture me on the innate joy and magic of this show. What I learned is that: (a) the "stars" apparantly practice really, really hard, (b) the guy who played J. Peterman in Seinfeld is "classy," and (c) the women's outfits are "really pretty."

Ah, that's it, then. I don't give stuff like this a chance because I'm estrogen-challenged. Guys don't care about hard work or classiness. We don't care if the outfits are "pretty." We only care if the outfits are see-through. Oh, and it might help if, somehow, as part of the competition, people's lives were at risk. THEN it would be a man's show.

So I think, in the sake of fairness, someone needs to develop a show along the same lines for we manly men to enjoy. That's where I come in. I've got a killer idea, and I just need to pitch it to the networks to make millions and be able to blow this popsicle newspaper.

Ladies and gentlemen -- well, mostly gentlemen -- I give you: "Blowing Stuff Up With the Stars." My premise is simple: assemble the celebrities (might I suggest Fabio, MTV's Martha Quinn, and the guy who played "Cooter" on The Dukes of Hazzard,) give them each 5 sticks of dynamite, and let them go crazy and blow up whatever's nearby -- a car, an empty home, Tom Cruise, whatever. Their work would then be judged by a group of pretentious munitions experts on Effectivity, Blast Radius, and Overall Awesomeness.

THEN, my friends, we would have some watercooler fodder.

"Did you see Martha Quinn get her hand blown off last night?"
"Wasn't that FREAKIN' AWESOME?!"

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