It's the most wonderful time of the year! My kids are back in school, the weather is (kind of) cooling down, and Dancing with the Stars is back on TV! I loved the premiere! There is a bunch of talent on this cast, so let's get to it!
Marilu Henner kicked off Season 23 of DWTS in fantastic fashion. She and Derek Hough performed a Jive that was a bundle of energy. She could not have looked happier. She clearly has some natural ability that is going to take her far. 27 for Marilu.
The season is just getting underway and I already have a little bit of a crush on James Hinchcliffe. His Fox Trot with Sharna Burgess was adorable. He too, seems to be a natural and I wasn't expecting it in the least! This guy is going to bring some good stuff to the dance floor. Totally well-deserved 31 for James.
Calvin Johnson Jr. was tasked with a Cha Cha for Night 1 and he lived up to the challenge. His sister went on record as saying he cannot dance and he totally proved her wrong. He is beyond adorable and is going to be so fun to watch. I think he and Lindsay Arnold are going to be a great couple. 26 for the Prom King and Queen.
Maureen McCormick might make it far on sheer gratitude. She and Artem Chigvintsev performed a Viennese Waltz and she was fine. She didn't knock my socks off, but she can't go anywhere but up. She is a bundle of emotion, so hopefully she can use that in her future dances. 22.
Kenny “Babyface” Edmonds and Allison Holker knocked my socks off with their Foxtrot. I couldn't think of the right word to describe it, then Julianne Hough called it "timeless" and it was perfect. Their chemistry is kicking right out of the gate. The power couple gets a 26.
Here's the deal, I truly know nothing about Amber Rose except for her name. After her Foxtrot with Maksim Chmerkovskiy, I Googled the crap out of her. For all of her "girl power" speak, she didn't quite bring it to the dance floor. Based on her facial expressions, it looked like she was enjoying herself, but her body movements were lacking conviction and confidence. She definitely has potential, I was just expecting a little more umph from her performance. 24 for Amber.
Sooooo, I enjoyed Vanilla Ice's Cha Cha WAY more than I was expecting. Dude can dance! There was little to no Cha Cha content in his performance with Witney Carson, but ultimately it was a blast. Even with lack of content, he got a 25! I want Finals for him. Let's do this, Ice!
Here's my one word description for Jana Kramer and Gleb Savchenko's Viennese Waltz: It’s not actually a word. It’s the sizzle sound. When I saw the video of them practicing, I thought for sure they were doing the Rumba. Holy smokes. These 2 are hot. Like, crazy hot. I feel like they're going places with or without this show, if ya' know what mean. 27 with an 8 from Bruno Tonioli because he's a dirty birdie.
Jake T. Austin and Jenna Johnson are like the PG-13 version of Jana and Gleb. They are adorable and fun and I thoroughly enjoyed their Jive. Jake needs to get out of his head and he'll be fine. 22 for the Jr. Prom King and Queen.
I had no idea that Rick Perry had so much personality. His Cha Cha with Emma Slater was lacking a lot, but he gave it everything he had and didn't back down. I respect that. 20 for Mr. Perry.
Terra Jole’, in case you didn't know, because I didn't know, is a little person. However, she has got personality for DAYS and it showed in her Jive with Sasha Farber. It will be most interesting to see where these two go this season. The sky is the limit. 25 for Terra.
Ryan Lochte came across very vulnerable in his Foxtrot with Cheryl Burke. He definitely has potential and athletes tend to do well on DWTS. His judges' critique was interrupted by two Lochte protestors, which was a little weird. They threw to break and recovered nicely, but I'm sure that was unnerving for everyone, to say the least. Regardless, Lochte has some growing to do. 24.
Let’s bottom line Laurie Hernandez, shall we? I want to be her bff. She is the cutest thing I have ever come across. Her sunshiny personality rivals that of Bindi Irwin and I looooooved Bindi Irwin. And then. AND THEN her Cha Cha was near perfection, in my opinion, not quite the judges', but who really cares, right? This is America's vote ultimately. Go get 'em, Laurie!!! 31!
So, I know it's hard to figure out that my early favorite is Laurie Hernandez. I mean, come ON! She's the whole package. The only thing that would make her an absolute shoo-in would be Derek as her partner. My first week surprise is Vanilla Ice! I want him to do well! He's so much fun! My early favorites to get the boot are Lochte and Jake. They are both too much in their heads. Although, considering Rick Perry only scored a 20, I'll put him as another likely candidate for the chopping block. This season is going to be a blast.