After ABC confirmed next season's all-stars outing of Dancing with the Stars, Tom Bergeron revealed that it will feature past champions, fan favorites and controversial cast members, which kind of took the wind out of sails. Do we really want to see Kate Gosselin again? No. Since season-planning is still in a nascent stage, we want to offer our two cents on how we think the season should be. Here are our five wishes for all-stars:
Who do you want to see on Dancing with the Stars All-Stars?
1. No champions
We're all-stars purists and feel that all-stars should be reserved for the best of the rest who didn't win. (If you want champs, do a winners season.) It is far more exciting to see people who didn't win the first time duke it out again than it is to see someone come back for seconds against Mirrorball-less alums. Never mind the fact that winners would be at somewhat of a voting disadvantage because it's inevitable that some fans will support another couple who didn't win. Excluding winners makes for a more even playing and voting field.
2. Keep original pairings
If it ain't broke, don't fix it. It'd be very tough to do since so many pros have more than one all-stars-worthy celebrity, some pros are dunzo with the show (How you doin', Edyta?) and some new pros' presence is a must for fans (Hey, Tristan!), but we'd prefer that people return with their original partner. From the pros' and stars' standpoint, there's loyalty involved. Chances are a lot of stars, especially those who made it far, probably will not want to return without their original pro, and it would be tough for each to watch the other enjoy more success or win with someone else. As Maksim Chmerkovskiy so eloquently put it: "It's like saying, 'Hey, your marriage didn't work, so let's try you with someone else.' What is the point of that? To prove that Derek [Hough] can win trophies and Maks can't? ... I don't think it's right." But more importantly, it's easy to forget that it's not the stars or the pros who make the show memorable, but the partnerships. Fans still harbor tremendous fondness for certain pairs and see them as one entity, and they would most likely feel cheated if they were split up. Plus, stars are under all-stars consideration because of their work, chemistry and partnership with their original pro, so shouldn't they return with the person who made them an all-star?
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3. Bring someone back from the first season
The first season, understandably, was a totally different animal from the show we know today. It was only six weeks long, there were six contestants, the final featured only two couples, the scoring procedure was different, and there were no extra dances (marathon, team dances, Instant Dances, Dance Duel, etc). (There was that infamous rematch between winner Kelly Monaco and runner-up John O'Hurley, the latter of whom won.) Who doesn't want to see how, say, Joey McIntyre stacks up seven years later in the current rigorous Dancing machine?
4. Don't feel obligated to fill a category
ABC's site asking for fan input on the cast has us a wee bit concerned because it's broken down into seven categories — actors/actresses, singers, athletes, reality stars, comedians, models, other (sadly, no "Disney/ABC employee" category) — suggesting that producers want one or two from each. And to that we give two thumbs down. This is not a regular season, so don't try to cover every single base and fill the usual quota if there are not suitable candidates. Which brings us to...
5. No controversial people or bad dancers
For the love of sequins and spray tan, just no. We (and poor Tony) survived Kate Gosselin once, so why should we endure her again? That's just sadistic. Controversial figures aren't necessary to build buzz around an all-stars season, which inherently implies that these contestants are, you know, actually good. While people like Gosselin, Bristol Palin, Chaz Bono, Tom DeLay (he has bigger fish to fry anyway), Kim Kardashian, Cloris Leachman and Master P certainly brought other things to the table, dance skills — and dance interest in some cases — were not one of them. Believe it or not, some fans actually do want to see good dancing, good routines and stars who are wholly invested in the process. Bringing back the cream of the crop will almost undoubtedly guarantee that, not to mention force the pros to step it up. That being said, realistically, it's more likely that these contentious hoofers return than people we want to see.
What are your wishes for the all-stars season?