Three Episodes In, and This Year's Dancing With the Stars Results are Already Written
But even with my limited knowledge, I feel I've seen every one of these dancers before in previous editions -- and I know how they're going to fare two episodes in.
Clearly R&B star Mario and skater Kristi Yamaguchi are the best actual dancers on the floor. Yamaguchi's ice skater's perfectionism has translated into spookily perfect dance performances -- this woman who claims she's never danced professionally in her life looks bred for the art. And Mario seems to make up for a lack of formal training with raw talent and hard work.
But if past Dancing cycles are any indication, they both will be eclipsed by Miami Dolphins defensive end Jason Taylor, who is my pick to win this thing. He is male and an athlete, which Dancing voters love, but he's also a good dancer who is getting better on the show, which Dancing fans REALLY love. DWTS winners are often a Cinderella story, and there's no better tale than the brawny athlete who molds himself into a suave, dancing phenom.
Other observations three shows in:
Adam Carolla gets the Tucker Carlson Award for most miscast participant. Fortunately, his (and our) pain won't last long.
Priscilla Presley gets the Marie Osmond, spunky older gal who might get within spitting distance of winning award. Though I think her overly surgeried face -- which reminds me WAY too much of Jack Nicholson's turn as The Joker -- will weird out the public enough that she won't last long as Dancing's Fainting Queen did last season.
Deaf star Marlee Matlin gets the Heather Mills we can't even believe you're on the dance floor award. But, like Mills, she's only going to need one awkward performance to send her to the showers. and unless the front runners trip up she's not got a chance of actually winning.
Marissa Janet Winokur gets the Sabrina Bryan spunky young girl who hasn't got a chance award. Cute as a button, Winokur isn't even as sharp a dancer as Bryan, who got skunked from the competition last season because nobody knew who she was -- a problem the young Hairspray star also faces.
Steve Guttenberg gets the older guy with two left feet who remains a good sport about it award -- otherwise known as the Jerry Springer Memorial Cup. That selfless spirit will keep him in the running at least a week or two longer than he deserves to be.
My pick for who's leaving tonight: Carolla and Monica Seles.