NewsFeed has to admit, we are not huge reality TV fans. (We prefer stately costume dramas on BBC America.) But there’s something about Dancing with the Stars — the crazy costumes, the utter lack of stars, the possibility that the whole thing could go off the rails at any moment — that grabs us. Here are the five best things about last night’s season 11 premiere that should convince you to start watching.
Best Case Of Giving The Audience Exactly What They Want: Florence Henderson
Florence Henderson saw how Betty White blew up this year. She knows America can’t resist old women with filthy mouths. You think those bleeped-out curses were innocent slips-of-the-tongue? Pff. This is a long con. Canny Florence, canny.
Best Impression Of Fred Willard In A Christopher Guest Movie: David Hasselhoff
Best Instance Of Dealing With The Elephant In The Room: Bristol Palin
Bristol Palin is not, how to say politely, famous because she has any notable skills? But kudos for her partner Mark Ballas for bringing it up discreetly, and Bristol for copping to the fact. Bonus points for the ballsiness of starting her dance in a Sarah Palin Halloween costume.
Most Epic Performance: Margaret Cho
See Ke$ha? This is how you unveil a cape.
Best Display Of Actual Emotion: Jennifer Grey
Amongst all the hamming and awkward stumbles and self-promotion, one moment of genuine emotion shone through. Actress Jennifer Grey, upon learning her first dance would be to Otis Redding’s “These Arms of Mine”from the Dirty Dancing soundtrack, broke down in tears in memory of her late co-star Patrick Swayze. Was it real, or was it a cheap sympathy ploy? Perish the thought: Everyone misses Patrick Swayze.