Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Dancing with Hope - Round Four

A couple things of note happened last week just after the last post about Hope Solo's adventure on this show, and I'd like to quickly comment on them before we get to Monday's dance.

- The fan voting results show happens every Tuesday, and of course one star is eliminated each round. Last week, Hope landed in the bottom two of voting for some odd reason) and had to stand up for the moment when we find out which couple is bounced from the draw. Up against a star that scored higher from the judges, I thought for sure she was about to be ousted - but in what everyone on the show acted like was a big and sad surprise, the reality star lady was out and Hope remained in it. The keeper did not celebrate this news at all and, frankly, looked like she felt instant pressure to prove they chose right.

- I'm aware that Hope poised for the ESPN nude athletes issue and most people supported her in this. I'm also aware that a notable segment of fans reacted in what could pass for disgust, saying how they used to respect her until she forget about being a role model for their daughters and took a "sexual" photo. THIS JUST IN: The photo is not in the least bit sexual and YOU are the role model for your children, not Hope. Being a fan of a player does not give ownership rights to their life. And last but not least, mark my words, if parents go and look down on her for this to their female children, it will be far more of a problem for them later than if the kids saw it and were given a straight explanation that did not involve body shame. We do not need to be sending a message that being a strong, healthy, confident American young ladies are something to be looked down upon - especially right after dad goes "Hubba hubba!" to the photo. If you don't like it, then don't like it and leave it at that. It doesn't change who she is and she is still perfectly viable as a hero for young girls.

Okay, sermon over. I doubt any of this needs to be said to an NSC reader, but that has been bugging the hell out of me for days now. That all aside, let's get you to the show. This week, Hope was given the Foxtrot. It's similar in ways to the waltz she did in round one, so I was kinda expecting a strong outing...


One thing is always a lock with ol' girl: she kills footwork. She kills it dead, every time. For once, I actually watched the whole show and I do not see another star dancer that hits footwork as well as Hopes does. The speed of her spinning was downright dangerous and she still absolutely murdered it. As you see in the interview package and should figure from her USWNT ways, the lady trains serious. It pays off.

She also gave a decent performance and had decent body lines (even if her head fell out of that weird position a couple times). Perhaps the most exciting development, though, is that her arms are starting to get some flair. It's just coming in, the very beginning of arm waves and such - the pretty icing on the dance cake. If she can get that area down, she becomes a bonafide threat to win it.

The judges gave her eights across the board, which put her tied for third on the night with 24 points. She also now has the fourth best average score through four weeks. Frankly, I felt the judges were too generous to several other couples, if not also slightly stingy with Hope. Thus, she gets her highest mark yet from me: an 8.5.

And if she is in the bottom two again staring down elimination tonight, the viewing public officially has a screw loose.

- Greg Seltzer

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