This season (12) there are 11 celebrity contestants–five women and six men:
1. Kirstie Alley: Emmy and Golden Globe winning actress
2. Chelsea Kane (Staub): Disney actress
3. Petra Nemcova: Supermodel and humanitarian
4. Kendra Wilkinson: Playboy model and reality star
5. Wendy Williams: Talk show host
1. Mike Catherwood: Radio talk show host
2. Chris Jericho: WWE Wrestler
3. Sugar Ray Leonard: Boxer
4. Ralph Macchio: Actor
5. (Lil) Romeo Miller: Rapper and actor
6. Hines Ward: Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver
From watching the videos, we know that Lil Romeo has timing and great abs, and that might help for the Latin dances, but what about the other ballroom dances that require smooth elegance? Ralph Macchio did some swing moves and that rhythm will help him some, but ballroom is more disciplined than the loose action of swing dancing and that was quite a few years ago.
We expect Hines Ward to do well enough–at least with the fan base voting. Football players have always had a healthy fan base on “Dancing with the Stars,” even when their dancing was bad (Remember Michael Irvin during season 9?).
Leonard at 54 is the oldest male contestant while Alley at 60 is the oldest female contestant. Jennifer Grey was 50, but despite her injury she was in great physical shape. The same can’t be said for Alley. Last season’s oldest female contestant, Florence Henderson, had been performing choreography on stage and was a fierce competitor and even outscored some of the younger contestants. Henderson was 76 during season 11 and just turned 77. Leonard has made many comebacks, so he seems to be dedicated to staying in shape, but that might make him light on his feet and give him stamina, but does he have grace?
Nemcova can pose and look beautiful in clothes, but can she dance? Models have not done well on this show. Coming through the Disney studio system, Kane does know how to dance to pop/rock style choreography so it will be up to her to translate that into ballroom. Videos of Wilkinson indicate that she has good muscle control, but she also has a family living in the Midwest and the morality police might turn against her, particularly with the recent revelations made in her autiobiography.
Williams is tall and talkative and she’ll need to work those legs and arms to her advantage. Catherwood can also talk, but what about dancing? These two radio personalities should make this a lively season at the very least.
Currently, the advantage should be with Kane, Wilkinson and Miller (Lil Romeo). If they start with the cha cha cha, it will be all about hip movement and that’s usually been a bigger problem for the men.