Dancing With the Stars Ratings Down: 4 Ways to Improve
Despite — or perhaps because of — its new format, Dancing With the StarsSeason 17 is once again struggling in the ratings. How can the show boost its numbers up again? We have a few theories. Some of these suggestions could be implemented right away, others might have to wait until next year, but either way, we just hope ABC does something to save the show.
Here are our ideas for making Dancing With the Stars more exciting. After you read our suggestions, share your own in the comments.
Stop overscoring. This season has already been riddled with 8s and 9s, and it's gotten a little boring. We know the judges are excited about how many talented dancers there are, but if everyone is getting 8s in Week 3, that doesn't leave a lot of room for improvement arcs. Oh, and speaking of scores, we still wish they'd bring back the .5 paddles from the All Stars season. The more nuance there is in the scoring, the better.
Bring back old favorites — but maybe not as judges. We're excited to see Julianne Hough on Dancing With the Stars again, but some fans are (legitimately) concerned that its not fair for Julianne to judge while her brother is still in the competition. We definitely think bringing back fan fave pros is a good call, but maybe judging isn't the place for the ones who have relatives in the competition. It would be good for the DWTS Powers That Be to think about how to incorporate other MIA favorites (looking at you, Maks) without opening up room for accusations of favoritism.
Highlight the fan fave pros they do have. Sharna Burgess won America over last year, but wound up paired with a rhythmically challenged partner this season. It's possible that was a mistake — after all, other football players have done well — but Tristan MacManus always being paired with older stars definitely isn't. We honestly don't understand why the show isn't trying to leverage the fact that he's a superstar pro in the making.
Fewer "ringers." This season is riddled with stars who have dance backgrounds, and yet its the less experienced stars like Bill Engvall, Snooki, and Jack Osbourne that we keep hearing about from fans. While having one or two stars who can work it from day one can be OK, people like to see true dance newbies enthusiastically take on the challenge of learning a new skill. More of that please.
Dancing With the Stars Season 17 airs on Monday, October 7, 2013 at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.
Rebecca Martin is an Associate Editor at Wetpaint Entertainment and our resident Game of Thrones, Pretty Little Liars, and genre TV expert. Follow her on Twitter and Google+!