In defense of Danny

July 13, 2007 at 12:30 pm | Posted in So You Think You Can Dance, TV News | 5 Comments

The New York Times has a fascinating article about So You Think You Can Dance‘s Danny Tidwell.  Apparently he danced several leads with the prestigious American Ballet Theater before deciding to go the reality route.  The tone of the article is essentially “how dare anyone criticize a talent like Danny,” which is valid but … slightly misplaced.  I think it’s ridiculous that Danny’s ended up in the bottom three twice,  and I don’t think it’s fair to call him arrogant.  I really like him.  But So You Think You Can Dance has always been about personality.  It’s not about who the best dancer is, it’s about being versatile and loveable.  Clearly, Danny wants the fame and exposure that a national reality show provides, and winning it is totally within his power — he just has to project a more accessible image.  That’s what Nigel’s little speech was all about last night.  This is why the ballroom kids do so well, because they’re used to being judged and know how to sell personality.  The important thing to remember is that this show isn’t the arbiter of taste for the dance community, it’s a fun summer distraction. 

TV Guide has another perspective on Danny’s supposed arrogance: Nigel attributed Danny’s tense facial expression in judging to safety pins pricking his, um, nether regions.  Ouch!

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  1. Whether Danny is arrogant or not is irrelevant. His actions portray arrogance and perception is reality. At least on Reality TV.

    I disagree that Danny has any shot of winning So You Think You Can Dance. Someone who displays arrogance, like Danny has done, will not be America’s favorite dancer. Him being in the bottom 3 is proof of that. I just feel bad that his partner has to suffer in the bottom 3 because of his arrogance.

  2. I get what you’re saying. I mean that it’s Danny’s decision whether to project the kind of image that will enable him to win. I agree that it’s far too late in the game to redeem his image.

    I do think it’s interesting that the show’s editors pre-sold us on the idea that Danny is arrogant. Instead of this being a growing audience perception, we were told by Shane Sparks and Cat’s voiceovers that the judges thought Danny had “attitude.” I just wonder if there would be the same opinion about him if those comments didn’t become part of the storyline.

  3. I think Danny is being asked to be more like a ballroom dancer (the focus of my post on the show this week). More super-happy personality.

    The judges are right, though, in the sense that Danny is so much the technician that we don’t see as much of “him” as we’d like. That’s the difference between the “best” dancer (something he clearly is) and the “favorite” dancer (which the show is seeking).

    This sort of beatdown can rally votes, I think, just as they did for Cedric a couple of weeks back. Danny is really handsome. That might get him into the final four?

  4. ““best” dancer (something he clearly is) ”

    WRONG!! I don’t think you can say he is clearly the best dancer. He is a good dancer with a ton of skill. That can’t be argued. However, best is a very subjective thing and honestly I dread seeing any of Danny’s performances.

    Anyway, I think it would have been interesting if we would be having these same conversations if the producers hadn’t created the perception. However, the guest judge would have still said what he did, because he saw it and the audience sees it. Just watch Danny at the end of a routine. He flips his head and has the most arrogant look on his face.

    I think what would be even more interesting is whether Danny would be doing better if Mia hadn’t said that Danny had a name for himself in the dancing community and that he wasn’t living up to it.

    America loves the underdog, rags to riches stories and if Danny is known in the dancing community, then that’s not what America likes.

  5. That Lauren chick seems the most arrogant to me. I cannot stand to look at her face anymore. She’s so smug and full of herself. That partner of hers, Neil, he also annoys me. Those two are always making obnoxious faces to the camera. Every time I see that guy, I want to punch his face in. He has no rhythm. Worst couple ever. They can’t even keep in synch. Neil has no musicality, and Lauren just seems to be coasting on her personal connections.

    Unfortunately those stupid teeny boppers with voting for them. Why don’t they put a vote limit on this show like Dancing With The Star? Most of us adults have lives. We don’t vote 1000 for 2 hrs like these little kids.


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