Monday, October 22, 2007
UPDATED with video, Dancing with the Stars Mark Cuban watch: Week Five
Mark Cuban REALLY wants you to vote to keep him on Dancing With the Stars. Of course, if he has his way, the competition will probably be decided by a game of "Jenga."
Mark Cuban — not exactly Major Nelson
Mark Cuban and professional partner Kym Johnson presented their fifth dance performance Monday, October 22, on ABC's Dancing with the Stars. They danced the Samba to the theme from the classic television show I Dream of Jeannie. Cuban's practice footage revealed his "[bleep] the judges" attitude, as he argued with his partner that their routine needed to be more "fun" even if it wasn't proper Samba.
The judges responded in kind, deeming Cuban's dance performance "entertaining" but lacking in "technical" merit. Each of the judges scored Cuban a 7, leaving him tied for last place at 21 points with Marie Osmond, whose fainting spell after her performance started the show off with a bang.
While Cuban pays lip service on his blog to valuing the judges' critiques, he also says that he "learned from people who have worked on DWTS for a long time that the judges votes are AT MOST 50pct of value assigned to each contestants scores. Which of course means that to be successful its just as important, if not more important to work just as hard at communicating with the voters as is to get good scores from the judges." Cuban is apparently working as hard (if not harder) at his gamesmanship on generating viewer votes as he is his dancing.
Other stars on the show who, like Cuban, lacked the natural dancing ability of stronger competitors have generated humorous and entertaining dance routines when they could no longer keep up on skill alone. A good example is Kym Johnson's partner from season four, Jerry Springer, whose strong fan base kept him around until the final four elimination, despite his plea to "let me go home." But Springer, as reluctant dance idol, actually was pretty funny (and I'm not a Springer fan).
Cuban apparently wants to win the competition (or at least stick around as long as possible), despite the universal assessment (including his own) that he is not a natural dancer. As someone who watches this show for the dancing, I find that a little annoying. While I can appreciate Cuban's willingness to take a chance in a competition where he's a fish out of water, I don't enjoy watching him dance.
I've seen his moves and overbite from enough drunk white guys at weddings. I don't need to watch tv for a spectacle that I've already seen ringside. It makes me wonder if all those votes he generates are coming from people who really watch the show. If so, they really need to get out more, attend some high-school reunions and weddings, to see Cuban-style in its natural habitat.
Tune in to the results show Tuesday, October 23 at 8 pm to see whether the nerd herd or the Mormon masses will be more successful in voting their chosen star from the basement of the score leaderboard. Marie Osmond's got the sympathy advantage after passing out onstage, while Mark Cuban, in contrast, looked a little whiney complaining about his hip surgery to the judges in front of spectator Heather Mills, an amputee and former DWTS competitor.