City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP
City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP

Dancing With the Stars: let’s play the odds

Jake Pavelka with Chelsie Hightower

This season’s “Dancing With the Stars,” debuting Monday, looks to be a relatively strong crew, with a blend of class (Buzz Aldrin) and trash (Kate Gosselin, anyone?) Here are my early predictions on who will do well and who won’t based on their age, physique, job, ability to draw votes and past success of similar people.


Evan Lysacek-  Five of the nine winners were athletes. And 59 percent of the top 3 finalists through the first nine seasons are guys. Those factors alone place 24-year-old Evan near the top of the list immediately. To boot, he just won an Olympic gold medal for figure skating. (Fellow figure skater Kristi Yamaguchi is a past winner.)

Chad Ochocinco – NFL players have done surprisingly well in this competition, including a winner (Emmitt Smith) and a runner up (Jerry Rice). Chad, 32, has plenty of charm, too, which should endear him to voters. The man was dubbed NFL’s “court jester” by The New York Times in a profile, donning a sombrero after one touchdown and handing a dollar bill to an official after another.

Nicole Scherzinger – She is best known as the lead singer of the Pussycat Dolls, a group which dances quite a bit. As the 31-year-old singer (”Don’t Cha,” “Buttons”) notes below, the Viennese Waltz and the Tango are not the types of dance she’s used to. But she will likely adjust and impress the judges with her skills.


Erin Andrews – Being an ESPN sportscaster didn’t help Kenny Mayne season 2. He was eliminated first. But this former Turner Sports host is in a different place. She’s far younger (31) and was a member of the Gator basketball dance team in the late 1990s while at the University of Florida. Clearly, she has coordination. And though the “Dancing” producers are unlikely to bring it up, she became notorious outside of sports circles after being stalked by a man who videotaped her nude through a hotel room peephole. That alone should get her some votes if she can open herself up emotionally on stage.

Jake Pavelka – He is in good shape and is incredibly likable, based on the big ratings for the just concluded season of ABC’s “The Bachelor.” The 31-year-old pilot notes in this ET report below that he has a muscular body that doesn’t make him flexible enough for dancing. So expect him in the early going to be fairly stiff. “Jake’s willing to do whatever it takes. But he lacks in the rhythm department,” his dance partner Chelsea Hightower told TV Guide. Nonetheless, he’ll get votes galore, at least early on, no matter how bad he dances.

Aiden Turner – Soap stars have done fairly well. Cameron Mathison (”All My Children”) came in fifth season five. Kelly Monaco (”General Hospital”), of course, won season one back in 2005. This 32-year-old actor from “All My Children” is pure eye candy and it’s a fair supposition to think most votes come from women. He could be a dark horse.

Pamela Anderson – She doesn’t exactly have a dancer’s physique and at age 42, she told TV Guide she never works out. But she has an enormous, um, fan base and her bubbly personality should play well on camera. She should also have fun parrying with the judges and her dance partner. No matter how bad she dances, she will be around at least through the halfway point.

Buzz Aldrin – The second man to walk on the moon is the oldest male contestant ever and second oldest period behind Cloris Leachman. Being 80 years old gives him instant sympathy votes from the voters. The graying tend to last until midway through the competition. Cloris, at age 82, and John Ratzenberger, age 60, lasted six weeks. Jerry Springer, at age 62, came in a surprising (and he himself said, undeserving) fifth his year.

Kate Gosselin – This 35-year-old mom of eight is the most divisive person on the cast. She has been tabloid fodder for the past couple of years, especially as she divorces Jon Gosselin. Some people are on Team Kate but I don’t get a sense she’s particularly popular. I can’t see her lasting very long, whether she can dance or not. (And that’s doubtful.)


Shannen Doherty. She has been saddled with the “bad girl” reputation for so long, I’m not sure if she single-handedly raising $100 million for the Haiti earthquake would enable her to change that. Perhaps this show will help her since it usually softens the edges of any celebrity. At age 39, after leaving “Beverly Hills 90210″ and “Charmed” under cloudy circumstances, her career is kind of adrift. She certainly has the time to practice. But she’s going to have to show some serious dancing skills early on because she’s not going to get much in the way of early sympathy votes. Think Denise Richards, eliminated week two season eight.  I’m not overly confident she’s going to last long.

Niecy Nash. This 40-year-old actress has relatively low-name recognition unless you happen to love “RENO 911!” or Style’s “Clean House.” She doesn’t look particularly athletic. Her one saving grace is her bigger-than-life, off-the-cuff humor, which might get her some early votes if she’s properly self deprecating.


“Dancing With the Stars,” ABC, 8 p.m. Mondays

42 comments Add your comment


March 18th, 2010
9:02 pm

I am still trying to figure out why Kate Gosselin is even “somebody” enough to be on DWTS. Anybody out here know?


March 18th, 2010
9:34 pm

No, Paula, I don’t. It seems that ABC is willing to invite anyone who has had any type of recent press to be a participant. It’s these shows that makes an ordinary housewife that intentionally had too many kids as a new ‘celebrity’ and someone we should now admire and root for. Who’s next, Rielle Hunter, Jesse James’ new tattooed mistress, Tiger’s fling #11? Shouldn’t there be some sort of filter to deem our qualified-as-worthy-of-our-viewership, rather than any warm body who has a ‘name’ and two functioning, biological legs?


March 18th, 2010
9:55 pm

Kate is just as much of a someone as any of the others on there, she has just as much of a right to be there as anyone else


March 18th, 2010
10:05 pm

Uh, Pamela Anderson is on the show and you call Kate Gosselin trash? hahaha!


March 18th, 2010
10:07 pm

I like Kate and wish her well. Too bad the online grannies who hate Kate must have gotten to you too. Join their blog at GWOP and you can be a crazy old hater too!


March 18th, 2010
10:51 pm

Sorry to say that I can’t see Kate G. fitting in any where. She is getting pretty desperate to stay in the public’s eye. I do like the show though and I will be watching the good dancers.


March 18th, 2010
10:54 pm

Just because someone doesn’t like Kate doesn’t make them a hater in the way you are making it seem. You seem to be using the term as in “hatin’” like being jealous…… exactly WHAT is there to be jealous of? Let’s see – she has 6 kids – nope, not envious of that, she came of as being a real *itch on tv – nope, I don’t want to come off as a *itch, she castrated her husband every chance she got – nope, I like my husband in tack, thank you very much……. So, what are we “hatin’” on? Now do I hater her as in strongly dislike her??????? You bet! I find her nauseating! She will go very early on – as will Shannon. Pamela Anderson, however, will probably be around for a few shows!


March 18th, 2010
11:07 pm

Amen Hijack! I don’t get the whole Kate thing! She was a complete and total witch to her husband on national TV and everyone seems to think he is the creep. Must admit, I am not a fan of his either, but good lord…That woman was the worst example of a wife on the planet. What man would stick around while she sharpened her claws?!


March 18th, 2010
11:16 pm

Sandie, thanks for mentioning GWOP (Gosselins Without Pity) blog. The “online grannies who hate Kate” love it there! GWOP exposes Kate for what she really is!

Sorry what?

March 18th, 2010
11:28 pm

Who the heck is Kate Gosselin. The obvious winner is Evan Lysacek.


March 18th, 2010
11:46 pm

You know why we don’t like KateG … becuase she is housewife who intentionally had too many kids so that she could get a TV show.. A celebrity for opening her legs and popping out a litter, give me a break! What is this world coming too, why are we adoring these disgusting human beings? I applaud real women who do their jobs, love their kids, without having to spew their life all over the media.KateG will burn someday, karma is a *itch just like her, & when her kids grow up write a tell all book about mommy dearest people will see what they don’t want to open their eyes to. People who commented likeitis & Sandie are bunch of ignorant tv jollies who have been made into tv zombies long ago. They think people like KateG are heaven sent & Jesus’s way of telling them that they are ok sitting on their couches getting obese and having a billion babies while the planet earth burns from over population………


March 19th, 2010
1:01 am

i love kate even tho she was a *itch to her husband he had to be to get things done ppl et stressed with2 kids come on she had 8 n all gng through potty trainin n imagine al the daipers she had too change, everyone wants her to be a “real” mom wtf is she then? shes a great mom she cleans cooks n loves her kids so everyone talkin but her are just reading dumb tabloids. go kate!!!


March 19th, 2010
1:47 am

There aren’t really that many Kate haters. It is just a few people who keep posting under different names. Most people like Kate, and wish her well.


March 19th, 2010
3:00 am

Why complain about Kate? Last year they had Melissa Rycroft. Kate had her own reality show for 5 seasons on TLC. Melissa was just a part of the bachelor for one season.

[...] Along with the astronaut, we will we see Pamela Anderson, who will sure be worth watching to see how she handles the swaying. Fresh off the Bachelor, Jake Pavelka who is already super popular on the station will try and swing his young body into the final. And of course drama queen Kate Gosselin will grace us with her presence. You can see more about the lineup of contestants here. [...]


March 19th, 2010
9:53 am

I don’t have any feelings about Gosselin one way or another, yet I have no idea why she is going to be on the show. Because she has lots of kids? I don’t get it. Wasn’t she the one who was always so mean to her husband? Is that show still on the air or is this just a way to keep her name out there? She’s in all the tabloids but I don’t know what she has actually accomplished.


March 19th, 2010
12:03 pm

Kate trash??? and what is Pam A????? oh..yeah..HO


March 19th, 2010
12:32 pm

I’m with Paula…the show is called “Dancing With The STARS”. All she’s done is be on a TV reality show. She’s not an entertainer. I’m not so much bashing Kate because I was once a fan of their show. It just seems to me she’s bleeding the heck out of her “15 minutes”, trying to make a career out of nothing. She needs to go back to being a nurse as her skills are needed. And, her kids need her home.

Also Rodney: You wrote “as she is divorcing Jon”. They’ve been officially divorced for quite a few months now.

My early vote off choices are: Buzz, Pam, Niecy & Kate, but not in any particular order. I don’t mind being proven wrong here, though. :-)

Only 25 hours left of winter, by the way! Whoo-hoo.


March 19th, 2010
1:42 pm

Thanks to the true haters for all the free publicity for GWoP. Most people would never hear of that little blog if the Kate Defense League did not go to every spot they can find to spread their own brand of hate and lies. Who are the real haters? Kate will bring about her own downfall through her chase of celebrity and fame. The PR people can only cover for her so much. Anyone who watched how she put down her husband and children through five years, kept track of her lies, and saw how graceless she was, knows what she is. Now she’s going to bring that act to the whole of the TV world.


March 19th, 2010
1:53 pm

“James” is delusional. Good day, Debbie.

Not Going To Use My Usual Name

March 19th, 2010
6:49 pm

Just to point out a streak of misogyny in the Kate-hate… Look at what “needabailouttoo” said: “Who’s next, Rielle Hunter, Jesse James’ new tattooed mistress, Tiger’s fling #11?”

Take a careful look at this list. All three of the mentioned individuals are (a) women, (b) single, and (c) caught in adultery with married men. Does “needabailouttoo” mention the real wrongdoers in those relationships? Maybe a better formulation would be “Who’s next–John Edwards? Jesse James? Tiger Woods?” Those guys have done more wrong than the women in question.

Think about it. The women in this equation never made any promises to anybody, so they never broke them. The men in this equation lied to their wives and broke their wedding vows. So why is it that we focus on the women?

Furthermore, note the scorn heaped on Kate when it’s her husband who had the affair.

I’m not a Kate fan by any means, and I never saw her show. I’m glad for her that she has better hair, I suppose, but the misogyny is too much to let pass.


March 19th, 2010
11:13 pm

Greatpost! Can’t wait to watch it.


March 19th, 2010
11:15 pm

Hilarious Manda. I would rather be known as a hater than part of the Kate National Defense team.

Kate should have stuck to her day job long ago!


March 20th, 2010
4:04 am

I’m going to just watch the show and see who prevails. The only person I’m surprised to see is Buzz Aldrin. At age 80 he’s certainly a bit more limited than the other dancers. But I give him credit for taking on the challenge. One thing for sure…whoever wins is going to have work harder, smile harder, and be harder on himself/herself than all the others, or they just plain won’t survive those grueling weeks of practice. More power to them all. I certainly couldn’t survive the gauntlet, so I won’t point fingers at any of them for being losers.

But there will be only one winner. And this season promises to be a lot of fun.


March 20th, 2010
9:29 am

super tramp (KG) won’t last. The reason people dislike her is not for how she mistreated her now ex-husband but how she treated her kids in front of them and us and behind their backs on camera AND for her HUGE sense of entitlement. She was a brood mare who intentionally had multiple multiples with plans in motion before they were even born to MARKET them which she did to their detriment. She has since gone on to further her ’stardom’ (focus on the ‘dom’ part which is pronounced ‘dumb’). And for her sheeples, we don’t ‘hate’ her, to hate something you have to care about it, ergo, no hate there. It is more like disgust for what has continuously been given her though undeserved. They say she is beautiful (well, she darn well better look better than pre-tups after all that has been spent on her construction). Picture this, take off the hair improvement, the OVER tanning, the glamour make-up, the teeth BRIGHTENED, the inflatable boobs (that seem to change size daily), the very nastily done tummy tuck-which in itself wouldn’t been seen if she’d realize she’s NOT bikini stuff.
And that gets you to the stumpy legs, KANKLES, and big dirty feet she propped in plain sight on the ottoman during the after show interview. THEY can’t redo her horrendous KACKLE, her UGLY facial expressions that she is consistently caught on candids with, and her absolute me, me, me, mine, mine, mine attitude. SHE comes first and always, half the time when discussing her kids she forgets to count the twins (she seems to not realize that the ‘tups’ were the big draw when they were six cute ‘little’ toddlers, now that they are almost six years old, NOT SO CUTE ANYMORE, and due to the lack of parental teaching those kids have had, not so fun to watch anymore. They lack all the ’social graces’ that they didn’t learn from their mother (who so obviously has NONE herself).


March 21st, 2010
1:16 am

It’s shaping up to be an interesting season.

I am rooting for: Niecy Nash, Kate Gosselin, Erin Andrews and Chad O.

I am on the fence about Shannon. I am a big Mark fan – will keep an open mind.

I predict a final of Nicole and Evan, but you never know…………………………….


March 21st, 2010
8:07 am

I tired of the bachelor.


March 21st, 2010
9:02 am

I hope all of the contestants do well and put on a good show. All of the them are celebrities at some level and all of them will have a great opportunity for entertaining people on the show. Let’s not be so hateful, it’s just TV. They are not evil people, they are just people.


March 21st, 2010
7:50 pm

I’m not on “Team Kate” but I do think the characterization of “moms need to stay home” is unfair. Pam Anderson has kids too, and I presume at least one of the guys dancing this season?


March 21st, 2010
8:10 pm

You’ve missed my point entirely. Indicating these individuals as examples has nothing misogynistic about it. My point was the irony that the term ‘celebrity’ is becoming sullied and tossed about far too undeservedly and frequently by any new name that comes to light in the media. I used as a recent example, by individuals with associations to well known names, uncovered by scandal, that are rewarded by the media by providing more-than-we-care-to-know about these individuals, and by repeated exposure in television and print media. In a short time, these previously unknown individuals are undeservedly rewarded with celebrity statuses. Octomom and Levi Johnston are other examples of undeserved fame, given by frequent media exposure. Kate is by no means a “Star”, although she very much considers herself as one. She only has name-recognition with a segment of a television population, through a show about a bad marriage and the struggles of too many kids to care for. She has name recognition by the rest of us because we had to endure the endlass, nasty details of separation from her husband, Jon. Is this a celebrity, or an angry life partner? And if it helps your determinating ability of what defines misogyny, I’m female, and not a hater of women… How should I label you?


March 21st, 2010
10:11 pm

Why is Kate Gosselin doing it? Probably the same reason everyone else is doing it: Each cast member gets $200,000 for appearing during the season. The winner gets an additional $100,000, 2nd place gets an addition $50,000, and the 3rd place finisher gets an extra $25,000.

$200,00 will buy a bunch of peanut-butter-and-jelly sandwiches for the kiddies.


March 22nd, 2010
1:18 pm

Isn’t the name of this show “Dancing with the STARS”? So having eight kids and once then explotting those same kids for somewhat fame makes you a STAR


March 22nd, 2010
1:22 pm

Go get them KATE!!!! I love you

professional skeptic

March 22nd, 2010
1:52 pm


March 22nd, 2010
2:22 pm

I think the first few to go will be Erin, Shannon and Buzz. I don’t think Erin’s fanbase, if she has one, will be the type to actually vote. And basketball dance teams are stiff and cheesy, so that will not help her in this competition. Buzz is just too dang old. Unless he has a shining personality like Cloris, I don’t see him in it for long.

And the people who even know who Shannon is probably won’t vote for her because of the character she portrayed.

Evan, Ocho and Nicole to battle it out in the final three.

Although I do think the bachelor is a cutie pie.


March 22nd, 2010
2:46 pm

Buzz Aldrin??? Really? Jeez America is so stupid!


March 22nd, 2010
2:51 pm

If Kate was so great she would be home rearing her brood and trying to give them a stable home life which sounds like something they have NEVER had and probably never will…scratch her. I think there are toooo many people that won’t vote for Jake because of the way he did sweet Tenley…scratch him. Other than these two, I don’t really care who wins, though I am really leaning toward Evan…seems like a great guy.

jake hater

March 22nd, 2010
3:00 pm

If Kate is a nobody, Jake is a bigger nobody. I guess he is on there to see if his stalker girlfriend/fiance’ will act cookoo over his dancing with another woman.


March 22nd, 2010
3:31 pm

Here is what I would LOVE to know – How do you get a job as a columnist and WRITER with NO grasp of proper english or grammar Rodney???? It’s “…dances POORLY”, by the way. “Badly” , in a pinch & taking some license – but “No matter how bad he dances…” Come on! Gee did you attend public school here in Georgia?


March 22nd, 2010
3:42 pm

who cares about the “stars”…. i just hope chelsie hightower stays until the end


March 22nd, 2010
6:18 pm

On behalf of all of midtown, I just want to say: Bring on the bare chested hunks! (and they are all publicity seekers looking to either start a career or re-start one). It’s just a blast to watch. Don’t take it too seriously and people will think you don’t have a real life.


March 24th, 2010
10:15 pm

What’s a Kate Gosselin? Is it the transgender dude in the ugly pink bat cape??