So Dancing with the Stars premiered last night for its eleventh season. I have to admit that I wasn't all that excited about this one. And when I was watching, there didn't seem to be anything all that remarkable about the first thirty minutes. That is until Jennifer Grey took the floor.
Is it just me or does she still look exactly like Baby? The hair might not be as big, but it's still there. Maybe that's why the dance was so emotional. Like most everybody else in America, I'm a fan of Dirty Dancing. I still get the same little shivers and thrills I did the first time I saw it. Grey cited her reasons for joining this season's DWTS cast for wanting to recapture the joy of dancing. Her partner, Derek Hough, chose the song "These Arms of Mine" from the Dirty Dancing soundtrack to dance the Viennese waltz. (Derek, honey - are you trying to kill us?) I don't know about everyone else but from the first few words of the song, I was zipped back to the '80's with Johnny and Baby. In rehearsals, Grey seems to have had a similar experience. As Derek's marking out the choroegraphy and she's watching, at first she's really excited and then she crumbles and so does everyone who ever loved the icon that is Dirty Dancing and Patrick Swayze. Her reaction moved the pro, Derek, in rehearsals and judge Carrie Ann Anaba and millions of others on show night.
As Margaret Cho noted in her DWTS rehearsals, the show is all about learning to ballroom dance and getting an unexpected dose of therapy along the way - for the celebs and even sometimes the coaches and members of the audience themselves. I expected this season's cast to be overshadowed by Bristol Palin's place on the line-up, but at the end of the night the only thing anyone was talking about was Jennifer Grey and Derek Hough. "This is why I love what I do," Anaba announced. Similarly, this is why I love DWTS. As host Tom Bergeron reminded viewers, the character of Baby inspired millions of women to dance. Thank you, DWTS for recapturing that last night. Team Grey!!!