The all-star cast for season 15 of “Dancing with the Stars” was announced on July 27 and as longtime fans can attest – there are some good, bad and ugly aspects about the new line-up of celebrities. The upcoming “Dancing with the Stars” season includes 13 alumni, six of whom already won the coveted mirror ball trophy. So, what’s the scoop on the good, the bad and the ugly for this season’s all-stars?
The good news is that several alumni are returning that truly deserve the chance to dance again. Giles Marini, Joey Fatone and Kirstie Alley all landed in second place and certainly deserve another shot at the mirror ball. The same can be said for Melissa Rycroft. During season eight, she was brought in as a last minute replacement for injured Nancy O’Dell. With only two days of practice, Rycroft tied for second place on the first night of competition. The former star of “The Bachelor” ended up in third place and deserves a full season of practice and competition.
There’s no doubt that Giles Marini and Pamela Anderson were brought back because they both dance well and are also are easy on the eyes. Giles was partnered with Cheryl Burke and came in second place, losing out to Shawn Johnson. Pamela Anderson danced with partner Damian Whitewood, but was knocked out of the competition after seven weeks.
The bad news about the all-star season on “Dancing with the Stars” is that it’s not a level playing field. Because ABC executives decided to intermingle past champions with celebrities that didn’t advance as far, some all-stars have more experience than others. While it will certainly be fun to watch past champions Kelly Monaco, Drew Lachey, Emmitt Smith, Apolo Ohno, Helio Castroneves and Shawn Johnson dance again, it should have been all or nothing. It would have been a more level playing field if the entire cast included past champions. It doesn’t seem fair to mix champions with “almost” champs.
Fans of “Dancing with the Stars” are wondering why Bristol Palin was chosen for the all-star cast. Sarah Palin’s daughter competed with Mark Ballas on season eleven and ended up in third place. However, her advancement on “DWTS” was questioned because of her consistently low scores from the judges. Her long run on the show attracted media speculation and attention. Now, Bristol Palin is back and fans are definitely unhappy about her selection for the all-star team.
Below are a few dissatisfied comments that were posted on July 30 on the “Dancing with the Stars” Facebook page:
- “I won’t be watching All-Stars until I hear that Bristol is gone. She has no business being on the show.” – Darrell Hefner
- “Why is that Palin person there? She is not an all star in my book. Get her off the show.” – Janie Mendiola
- “SERIOUSLY?! Why Palin?! She’s as good of a dancer as she is a celebrity!” – Alma Rodriguez
- “Why would they bring back Palin?” – Gayle Bullock
Instead of bringing back Bristol Palin, the spot could have been filled with a past celebrity competitor that truly deserves a second shot at the mirror ball, like…
- Erin Andrews: The self-proclaimed tomboy from ESPN came in third place with partner Maksim Chmerkovskiy on the tenth season of “Dancing with the Stars.” Although she received no perfect scores from the judges, Erin did exceptionally well throughout the season and improved greatly.
- Rob Kardashian: No one ever expected Rob to go as far as he did (2nd place), but he surprised all and was dashing and daring on the dance floor with his partner, Cheryl Burke. The reality star had a bit of a rocky start in season 13, but brought his A-game in the end. His emotional growth was phenomenal and Rob was pure “DWTS” fun.
- Stacy Keibler: She lit up the stage on “Dancing With the Stars” with partner Tony Dovolani during season two. Like the first season, there was a bit of controversy surrounding the voting process. It grew worse when Jerry Rice and Anna Trebunskaya advanced to the finals, despite the fact that Stacy and Tony clearly had better scores. On top of her ability to wow a crowd and the demanding judges, Stacy Keibler now has George Clooney in her corner. Wouldn’t it be fun to see him sitting in the audience?
- Mario Lopez: The soap star competed during season three with his partner and ex-girlfriend, Karina Smnirnoff, who was making her debut on “DWTS.” After a total of 15 dances, Mario and Karina’s total scores were higher than their closest competitors, Emmitt Smith and Cheryl Burke. The season finale pulled in an astonishing 27.8 million viewers. Emmitt won the final dance-off, but Mario will always remain one of the show’s favorite competitors.
- Evan Lysacek: The Olympic ice skater competed on season ten of “Dancing With the Stars” with his partner, Anna Trebunskaya. In the beginning of the season, he was quoted as saying, “I can’t dance!” Oh, but he could, and did very well in the competition. However, in the end, his Quickstep and freestyle routines were not enough to overcome Nicole Scherzinger’s scores. Evan Lysacek ended up in second place, not a bad spot for someone who can’t dance.
- Maria Menounos: She was eliminated earlier than expected, but the TV host was one of the shining stars on the most competitive season to date. Because of her perseverance and determination, Maria Menounos deserves a second chance to win it all. She’s already accustomed to tough competition, so she would fit right in to an all-star season.
- Kelly Osbourne: In the ninth season, Ozzy’s daughter hit the dance floor with her partner, Louis Van Amstel. After her first dance, the Viennese Waltz, the judges were amazed at Kelly’s grace and awarded her with strong scores. Throughout the season, the reality TV star developed into a truly beautiful ballroom dancer. In the finals, her Argentine Tango earned high scores, but she stumbled slightly during her freestyle routine. Although Kelly Osbourne won third place, she will always be remembered as the contestant who improved the most over the course of a season.
Below is the all-star celebrity cast on the upcoming season of “Dancing with the Stars”:
- Kelly Monaco (season one)
- Drew Lachey (season two)
- Emmitt Smith (season three)
- Apolo Oho (season four)
- Helio Castroneves (season five)
- Shawn Johnson (season eight)
- Joey Fatone (season four)
- Giles Marini (season eight)
- Melissa Rycroft (season eight)
- Bristol Palin (season eleven)
- Kirstie Alley (season twelve)
- Pamela Anderson (season ten)
A 13th contestant will be determined by fans’ votes. Carson Kressley, Kyle Massey and Sabrina Bryan are all in the running. To cast your vote, go to ABC.com.
To watch the all-star cast announcement that was made on “Good Afternoon America” on July 27, follow this YouTube link.
The all-star season of “Dancing with the Stars” premieres at 8/7c on Monday, September 24 on ABC.
Do you want to stay in-the-know? Then sign up to get my articles personally delivered to your in-box. Just click on SUBSCRIBE, and you’ll stay up-to-the-minute with your favorite television shows, including “Dancing with the Stars.”