I'm not really quite sure what I'd like to say about this week's premiere episode of Dance War. Was it great? Certainly not. Was it good? No. Was it awful? Not quite. Was it bad? Yes. I will cut the show some slack though because it was an audition show. I absolutely can't stand audition shows so it's very likely that I wasn't watching it with an open mind. But let's go through what happened anyway.
The show started off live in Hollywood with Drew Lachey telling us that the intent of the show is to create the ultimate super group made up of performers who can sing and dance. (98 Degrees plus Pussycat Dolls anybody?) Anyway, he then introduced Carrie Ann Inaba and Bruno Tonioli as the team captains and went over who they've worked with in the past. At that, I just have to stop and say something: Nowhere in Carrie Ann and Bruno's illustrious past did Drew mention them having a vocal background; it was all related to dancing. Remember that because it's important. Drew then told us that 30 performers would be chosen in the auditions to go to Hollywood (how American Idol) and from the Hollywood callbacks only 14 would make it as finalists on to the show at the end of tonight.
The first set of auditions was held in Central Park in New York City. While the video footage tried to make it appear as though thousands of people showed up to shine, it was mentioned at one point later that "hundreds" showed up. I have no idea how many people actually showed up but I thought that was quite interesting in a city as big as NYC. After Carrie Ann and Bruno were introduced to the crowd, the young hopefuls had to only dance freestyle in groups of 15 to help narrow down the field. The best dancers would be called back for the singing and dancing round later in the afternoon.
And this is where the show fell flat on its face. Boring auditions with decent dancers and hardly mediocre singers. Blech! And to make it worse, there was Carrie Ann and Bruno critiquing these people's singing abilities. Why wasn't there also a "vocal" person with these two to help them determine who could actually sing well? Some of the people they loved wouldn't have been looked at twice during the beginning rounds of American Idol much less have made it before Paula, Randy, and Simon.
What about that song "Baby Love"? If I hear it one more time, I'm going to projectile vomit! Why did so many people sing that song and "Amazing Grace" and "My Girl"? Talk about amateur hour! Along with the auditioners' limited lyrical skills, another thing that irked me was how at the end of the auditions they didn't give us the names of the people that actually made it to Hollywood. They spent so much time telling us about these folks during this process and didn't tell us who made it? How stupid!
This same ordeal happened again in Los Angeles and Nashville. Group freestyle dance and then solo auditions where the person sang and then danced. There wasn't much singing while dancing which I thought was the whole point of a "super group" but then what do I know? I just write about this stuff.
Finally it was time for the 30 chosen to take it to Hollywood where they would have two days to learn a group performance. After their performance, they would be whittled down to the 14 finalists. It was only at this point that vocal coaches were brought in to help them with their singing (as well as dance coaches). They would be taught to sing "Dance To The Music" and a simple and basic dance routine to go along with it.
After they performed their group routine, Carrie Ann and Bruno went over who they liked and didn't like. Each person was then called in and told if they made the final 14 cut or not. Again, they didn't tell us everybody who was and wasn't cut. A little advice to anybody out there considering trying out for this show if a second season comes around: don't count on anybody recognizing your two minutes of fame.
Drew brought us back to the live show where we actually found out the names of the 14 finalists: Charity, Zack, Phillip, Mariel, Allysa, Maxx, Corina, Lacey, Kelsey, Tony, Marquis, Chris, Bradley, and Elizabeth. After that it was time for them to perform live for the first time every. To me, it seemed like they were lip-synching at the beginning. It was only towards the end of the bland routine did I actually hear them singing. I don't know if that was because they were singing over their own tracks and the sound guys didn't have things set up right or if some of them just suck so bad they can't sing on their own yet. I guess we'll find out.
The next show will air on Monday, January 14 at at 8:00 PM (ET/PT). Carrie Ann and Bruno will pick their teams of six which means that two people will be leaving.
Thankfully, the auditions are over and the remaining five episodes will focus on performances. I'll watch it again (since it's not an audition show) but depending on how good it is, I don't know if I'll watch much more than that.
What were your thoughts on this show?
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