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In 21 seasons, ABC’s Dancing with the Stars has seen a lot of memorable performances. Some of the amateur celebrity dancers have wowed us with their commitment to stepping out of their comfort zones and making us want to grab our own boogie shoes a try a rumba or two. But, sometimes, the dancing that we feast our eyes on as a given episode progresses…well it can leave a lot to be desired. Like, for instance, Monday’s Season 22 premiere show, where Geraldo Rivera failed to help the show live up to the “dancing” part of its title. Take a look.
Aw, man. This video of Geraldo Rivera and his professional dance partner Edyta Sliwinska performing a (supposed) cha cha to “Treasure” by Bruno Mars was posted on the show’s YouTube page. And, uh…Dude, this ain’t good. Actually, it has to be one of the worst performances on the show, ever. Let’s break it down, shall we?
First off, standard disclaimer. We all know Geraldo Rivera isn’t a dancer. As with most of the stars who take a shot at competing on Dancing with the Stars, it’s a crap shoot as to whether they’ll get the hang of dancing until their feet bleed or not. And, even more importantly, it’s also a crap shoot as to whether we’ll enjoy watching them try. I have to say, as of opening night, Rivera is batting a big fat zero on both accounts.
The routine starts off cute enough, playing on Geraldo Rivera’s infamous live Al Capone’s vault news program from 1986. Only this time, instead of finding nothing, we find Rivera’s gold and silver spangled dance partner. She comes out from behind the wall brilliantly, and you know what? As soon as Rivera greeted her I knew this was going to be bad. He was smiling like he didn’t quite know what was going on. Like he was actually in the middle of a news broadcast and a beautiful woman came out of nowhere and started to make him dance with her.
Right when the actual dancing started, there was a very brief moment when his partner, even though she was knowingly smiling to beat the best pro on the floor, showed a brief bit of something unsure in her eyes. It was almost as though she could feel how stiffly Geraldo Rivera was moving and thought Dammit, I guess it’s too late to fake a pulled groin now.
Rigid, inflexible, unyielding, unbending…All those words and more describe Geraldo Rivera in the premiere episode. It really was like the man hadn’t gotten up from behind his news desk for 30 years, and now someone’s making him dance. The villains. Really, he’s basically incapable of moving more than one body part at a time. He couldn’t even make doing the lady-curves motion over Edyta’s undulating body sexy. He literally stood in one spot, hips and feet frozen in place, with a lecherous old-man look on his face while she was doing her best to make this routine work. Oh, Edyta, honey. I’m sure you did your best, but you were never going to win this swiveless battle.
Props to Geraldo Rivera on one count, though, his joyful mustache never drooped once during this whole production. Even if he wasn’t sure what was happening most of the time, he sure did seem to enjoy it.