Reality TV lovers everywhere, grab a snow cone and get ready for a night of bumps, bruises and banter as “Skating with the Stars” season 1 premieres November 22 on ABC. Wondering what it’s all about and which of your favorite C-listers would be crazy enough to slap on skates and hit the ice in front of millions? Read on for a complete preview, lineup and a few predictions.
Modeled after its wildly successful sister show “Dancing with the Stars”, whose current season concludes Tuesday with one last hurrah from finalists Bristol Palin, Jennifer Grey and Kyle Massey, “SWTS” will feature a cast of six celebrities and their professional partners as they hit the ice each week for judges’ scores and viewer votes. Every week, one pair will be eliminated from the competition until the cast is whittled down to the eventual winner.
According to the reality show’s official website, the “Skating with the Stars” season 1 lineup is comprised of the following celebs and their pro partners.
SWTS Pair #1: Olympic skiier Jonny Moseley, 35, and Brooke Castille.
SWTS Pair #2: Real Housewives of New York star Bethenny Frankel, 40, and Ethan Burgess.
SWTS Pair #3: Actress Sean Young, 51, and Denis Petukhov.
SWTS Pair #4: Motley Crue’s Vince Neil, 49, and Jennifer Wester.
SWTS Pair #5: Soap Star Rebecca Budig, 37, and Fred Palascak.
SWTS Pair #6: Actor Brandon Mychal Smith, 21, and Keauna McLaughlin.
At first glance, basic logic would give a competitive edge to Jonny Moseley, who as a professional skiier, is familiar with the rigors of intense athletic training. In danger of falling from the competitive ledge are rocker Vince Neil and diva Sean Young, if only because age is rarely an advantage in a physically demanding competition. As for outspoken new mama Bethenny Frankel, actress Rebecca Budig and actor Brandon Mychal Smith, the jury’s out: They could either dominate on skates or kiss the ice.
But viewers like me aren’t the only folks ready and willing to opine on the contestants’ performances. Scheduled to issue the requisite weekly beat-downs as judges are the trio of unabashedly sparkly Olympian Johnny Weir, long-time skating commentator and former gold medalist Dick Button, and renowned choreographer Laurie Ann Gibson. The show’s cast is rounded out with host Vernon Kay, and color commentator and former Olympic medal-winning Ice Dancer Tanith Belbin.
With this little primer in your pocket, remember to tune in tomorrow night after the DWTS performance show finale for the “Skating with the Stars” season 1 premiere. It’s sure to make for some ‘cool’ TV.