Dancing with the Stars opened its fifth season strong on Monday and Tuesday night with a girl vs. guy competition. Monday night the girls brought their foxtrots and cha-chas to the dancefloor and the guys answered the challenge on Tuesday. By far, this was the strongest opening show in the five seasons with no one looking like a disaster, even though the rehearsal period was only four weeks. There were three standout performances across the two nights.
Among the women, Cheetah Girl Sabrina Byan sizzled with her professional partner Mark Mallas (who is new to the show this season). Their cha-cha was high energy and sexy. The judges didn’t care for the hip-hop moves they threw in, but to me it worked and they got what had to be one of the highest scores ever given on an opening show with a 26.
For them men, boxer Floyd Mayweather also brought a high energy cha-cha to the ballroom, yet for some reason he was shot down by the judges, earning only 16 points. I’m not clear what they didn’t like, especially since Sabrina scored so high. No matter, I thought Floyd was great. The other highlight was model Albert Reed who put his hips to work in a sexy cha-cha. If he can channel his energy right he’ll go a long way in this competition.
Two clunkers of the 12: Wayne Newton and Josie Maran. He got more points than he deserved since he seemed to get lost during his cha-cha a couple of times, and yet the judges didn’t call him on it. Maran played it too safe in her routine, making all the more obvious that her dancing skills lack.
This year, the women are, by far, stronger than the men. Marie Osmond, Jeanie Garth, Jane Seymour and Mel B were all solid. With such impressive opening dances, you can imagine how good they’ll get as the weeks go on. It was less clear with the men where the stand outs were besides Floyd and Albert. The other male who stood out was Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban. His dance wasn’t perfect, but he sold it well (a surprise since he’s not a performer). Racecar driver Helio Castroneves was also good in his fox trot and it will be fun to watch him grow over the coming weeks.
Right now, I pick Sabrina Bryan to win the whole thing (it would be the first time a woman has one DWTS since season 1). And I think Josie Maran will go home tomorrow.
Look for other DWTS commentaries on Tuesdays after the results show. With my Bluestreak training schedule, I’m not home on Mondays to watch and predict so I’m just going to comment on the whole week’s events after the results show on Tuesday night.
Results Update: Yes! Josie went home. And Sabrina got to dance again, which was fun to see all over again. Dolly Parton was great too. The “9 to 5” number was very enjoyable… good singing and good dancing! I feel like it’s going to be a solid season.