Should Have Worn The Monkey Suit: Florence Henderson Kicked Off DWTS

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Florence Henderson is a multi-talented actress and talk show host who has joined the cast of 'Dancing With The Stars' Season 11

Bob D'Amico/ABC via Getty Images

Here’s the story, of a lovely lady, who was apparently less-popular with the American people than a teen mom from Alaska.

It’s been a rough week for TV parents. First Barbara Billingsley and Tom Bosley pass away, and now Florence Henderson has been kicked off Dancing With The Stars.

But we’re not going to talk about that yet. First, we’ve got to to talk about Bristol Palin.

If Dancing With The Stars was a normal show, Bristol Palin’s jive Monday night might be seen as the moment it jumped the shark. Holding up the daughter of a former vice-Presidential candidate, a young woman whose claim to fame is an unintended pregnancy that made a mockery of her mother’s political stances, as a “star” is one thing. Dressing her up in a gorilla suit and forcing her to dance to a song by The Monkees is quite another. But Dancing With The Stars is not a normal show. The kind of unselfconscious ridiculousness in this routine — a ridiculousness that makes all right-thinking people stop to reconsider what shared values in the culture may have led up to this point — is not unexpected to regular viewers of Dancing With The Stars. In fact, one could argue that such ridiculousness is the entire point of Dancing With The Stars. (This theory gain credence when you consider that the show’s producers, confronted with the burden of a star who cannot and does not want to sing or dance or act, have not tried to hide Palin but have in fact dressed her up in increasingly farcical outfits.)

(See the 10 most dubious Dancing With The Stars “Stars.”)

By contrast, Florence Henderson’s Argentine tango was nothing special, the kind of mediocre performance that’s good enough to get dark horses sent home from reality competitions every week of the year. Still, as we wrote about when we reviewed the season opener, we will miss Henderson’s salty saucy charm.

What do readers think. Will the continuing carnival spectacle of Bristol Palin (who, it must be said, has reacted to the sideshow into which she has been forced with considerable aplomb) last long enough to power the Alaskan into the finals?

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