07 January 2011

New Guilty Pleasure: Live To Dance

I'm gonna start by saying that Live To Dance, this Paula Abdul-produced dance competition, has nothing new to offer. Much of the ideas presented are so similar to America's Got Talent (and its other inceptions).

I was dreading one thing before watching --- I was dreading listening to Paula's comments. She's one of the three judges, along with one of Michael Jackson's choreographers (who did THIS with Cebu's now-famous Inmates) and a Pussycat Doll.

But surprisingly, Paula's tolerable here.  And the other two judges sounded fine. Or maybe I'm being less judgmental because (I am not a judge? LOL) I still am getting to know them.

For a show that's clearly a copy of another show (which is a copy of some other show, too), the dancers and their performances are actually quite interesting. Live to Dance allows contestants from all ages and from all genres of dance --- which can either be a good thing or a bad thing. It can be this really entertaining program with lots of variety. Or it can end up becoming a circus. Since it's only been two episodes so far, I'm holding off verdict on that.

I also do not have a clear favorite. It's still the audition stage, edited and cut heavily.

And sure there are sobs stories and dramatic elements and I get that this is the standard formula for competition programs. But years of watching shows like this has taught me one thing --- I can always press the fast forward button when the segment's becoming too sappy and cheesy.

The huge surprise for me, however, is seeing Andrew G host the show. I wasn't aware. I've been a fan of his work on Australian Idol because he's been very engaging and showed such a good rapport with the contestants and the judges. Now that that show is unofficially canceled and Andrew's off to LA since his wife works on Hollywood (as a producer of TV programs, I think), he's finally crossing over to American television. I've been lurking in some fan sites to check what they have to say about Andrew and the comments have been unkind so far. And all I can say to that is --- to wait till they do the live shows for Live To Dance. Because that guy can do his job really well.

Did you watch the first week of Live To Dance? Are you glad to see Paula back on TV? Did you like Andrew G?