So, the next three T.V. reviews have a few things in common. All three shows are of the reality/competition genre, all three deal with family members, and all three really suck. First up,
Lifetime’s foray into the dance competition arena. The contestants are ten professional dancers and their parents. Together, each pair (daughter/father or son/mother) must choreograph a routine in a specific dance style or to a specific song and survive to the end to win $100,000. The setup is the same: the host (Ian Ziering) and the three dance “professionals” serving as judges (Cris Judd, Vitamin C and Ben Vereen).
If you know the story behind this travesty of primetime entertainment, you actually wouldn’t be surprised that it turned out so poorly. Initially, the dancers auditioned under the impression that they would be cast in a reality series called “Dance Nation.” It wasn’t until they were chosen that they were then told that they would be dancing with partners and that those partners would be their parents. Wow. I mean, I like surprises just as much as the next guy, but really Lifetime, shame on you! Here you have these dancers that are trying make careers for themselves, seeing this opportunity as a big break, and you come along and crush their dreams. And, all because you thought it would be cute and lucrative to have them dance with their parents, who have had little to no training whatsoever. Nice!
Which brings me to reason #1 why this show sucks. It’s not a true dance competition! It’s more like a community center, talent show. Yes, it is cute that children are dancing/bonding with their parents, fine. I mean, it’s Lifetime, so I can’t really expect much more from them. However, if I’m investing time into a dance show, the dancing better clearly knock me out. Strip away the fact that the partners are parents, and you’re left with a pro dancing with an amateur, doing choreographer that is beginner level at best. In my opinion, that does not pass for quality, dance entertainment. I’d rather watch paint dry, than watch a 50-something, suburban housewife try her hand at krumping. And, while it may be good for a few chuckles, it’s laughter that doesn’t make me feel good about myself. I mean think about it. That’s somebody’s mom or dad being made fun of on national TV.
Reason #2 that this show sucks: Vitamin C and Ian Ziering. Who remembers Vitamin C? Yeah, I had to pause myself. In fact, I actually had to Google her to remember that she was a 90’s pop diva and a one-hit wonder at that. How is she qualified to judge a dance competition? Oh, that’s right! She’s done music videos, most of which included complicated choreography like walk to the left, stop, and smile at the camera. But, I guess every competition needs the I-just-think-you’re-fabulous! judge. Thanks Paula!
If you don’t remember Vitamin C, that’s okay because I’m sure you remember Ian. He just so happened to star in a little show call Beverly Hills 90210. Wait, what’s that you say? He was also on Dancing With Stars? Another great show! No wonder he was a shoe-in for this bit since we just took that show, replaced the stars with moms and dads, gave it a snazzy name and aired it on a different network. Awesome! To be fair though, Ian is a pretty good host for this kind of thing, but I had to get another jab in. And, Cris Judd and Ben Vereen actually are qualified judges as well. I just wish they had something better to critique.