Photo Credit: ABC
ABC’s Dancing with the Stars has always bobbed along nicely in the pop-culture pool, drawing solid ratings and a respectable amount of publicity. But in season 10, the campy dance competition has really made a splash, drawing more viewers than even Fox powerhouse American Idol on some nights.
True, its success this season may have had more to do with stunt casting than high quality dancing. Viewers just couldn’t resist this particularly weird mix of celebrities, from '80s vixens Shannen Doherty and Pam Anderson, to newly-engaged Bachelor Jake Pavelka (charming his way off one hot ABC series onto another), to the freshly-minted Men’s Olympic figure-skating champ, Evan Lysacek (gliding off the Vancouver ice rink into the DWTS ballroom). Most of all, lots of viewers were still wrapped up in the tabloid saga of Kate Gosselin; if they weren’t already DWTS fans, her participation provided the strongest of yanks.
Unsurprisingly, the Top 3 features celebs with genuine experience with dancing and/or choreography. Paparazzi magnet Gosselin is long gone; so is moon-walker Buzz Aldrin. Going into the two-night finale (May 24, 8 p.m. ET and May 25, 9 p.m. ET), the finalists -- Lysacek, Pussycat Doll Nicole Scherzinger and ESPN commentator Erin Andrews -- have all navigated the contest with grace and poise. But that’s not what attracts eyeballs, so the media lightning rods will be back for the finale, too.
On Monday, the three couples will perform a judges’ choice dance -- Erin and her partner will perform the samba; Evan and his partner the Viennese Waltz; and Nicole and her partner the rumba. Then, they'll each perform a Freestyle dance, which has no rules.
On Tuesday, the dance is contestants' choice; all three chose Argentine Tango. Then, the judges narrow the three contestants to two, and each will in turn perform one last dance.
Still, most finale hype is focused on the return of less talented contestants. According to ABC, Gosselin will perform a “high wire act.” Aldrin will show off a “space walk.” And Pavelka will dance the Viennese Waltz with his fiancée Vienna Girardi.
“Vienna is not nervous at all,” Pavelka’s pro dance partner Chelsie Hightower told People magazine. “If it were me, I think I’d be vomiting all night and not sleeping. But Vienna is doing really well, and she’s so excited."
Wow, I wonder if Vienna will win! Oh, wait. She’s not competing. I wonder if, uh, one of those other people will win!
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Who do you think will win Dancing with the Stars?