The whole draw of Dancing With The Stars—ABC’s Americanized version of the BBC’s Strictly Come Dancing, which couldn’t sound more Anglo even if there was a “Pip pip!” somehwere in there—is in watching celebrities who don’t normally dance work their way through complicated routines with the help of professional hoofers and choreographers. But the upcoming 24th season of the talent-competition juggernaut appears to be hedging its bets, eschewing obvious duds like Tucker Carlson and Rick Perry (thereby dispelling any notion that DWTS is a one-way ticket to becoming a member and/or mouthpiece of the United States’ reality-show executive branch) for more, shall we say, seasoned talent.
Here’s future Dancing With The Stars star Heather Morris in her previous TV life as Glee’s Brittany, performing a song by an artist for whom Morris, in a previous previous life, was a back-up dancer:
Below, the music video for “Work From Home,” the choreography for which might be a few steps shy of the ballroom, but still indicates that Fifth Harmony member and Dancing With The Stars season 24 competitor Normani Kordei could list “dancing” in the special skills section of her résumé.
Beginning March 20, the new season of Dancing With The Stars will pair frequent Love Boat passenger Charo with professional dancer Keo Motsepe. Here’s one half of that team performing a song that definitely has “dance” right there in the title.
Athletic stamina is a proven advantage in the competition, as attested by past champions Emmitt Smith, Apolo Anton Ohno, Kristi Yamaguchi, Meryl Davis, Donald Driver, Hines Ward, Shawn Johnson, and Laurie Hernandez. Along those lines, season 24 of Dancing With The Stars features an NFL running back (Rashad Jennings), an Olympic figure skater (Nancy Kerrigan), an MLB catcher (David Ross), a bull rider (Bonner Bolton), and an Olympic gymnast (Simone Biles). It’s not exactly proof that Kerrigan’s going to do just fine on Dancing With The Stars, but here’s a shitty, sped-up rip of the Boy Meets World episode she was in 1995.
Point being: Dancing With The Stars has relied upon ringers in the past—one previous champion’s season more or less built up to a routine based on his signature move—but this lineup looks downright ringer-dependent. Rounding out the ringers: Billboard dance chart fixture and Real Housewives star Erika Jayne, Saturday Night Live alumnus Chris Kattan (who’s certainly not getting out of this before doing something Mango-related), and current Bachelor Nick Viall. But they’re all going to have to work extra hard to best odds-on favorite, fool-pitier, A-Team member, and American treasure Mr. T. Just look at that confident shimmy in the video for “Treat Your Mother Right.” The man’s a human metronome. Prediction for season 24 of Dancing With The Stars? Pain.