Mike McRoberts, ladies and otherly identifieds!

Dancing with the Stars week one, night two: Mike McRoberts has abs

New Zealand’s celebrity perambulator competition continues tonight! Sam Brooks power-ranks the second night of the first week of Dancing with the Stars NZ.

The ranking for the first seven contestants can be found right here.

Yeah, he didn’t take his shirt off this episode. See you next week, you thirsty Mike McRoberts chasers you! Anyway, If you didn’t watch Game of Thrones tonight, you were probably watching this! That’s a choice!

If I had one general observation on these first two shows is that there seems to be a much larger focus on stunts than there have been in previous seasons. By which I mean there’s a lot more women ending routines upside down, and more props than your local community theatre show. Has it helped anybody? Not visibly! Is it more exciting to watch? A little! Who isn’t a little problematically thrilled by the idea of someone more famous than them falling on their head and having a mild concussion? A better person than me, for sure.

But you’re not here for a critical discussion on a show upping the stakes visually, you’re here for my subjective, arbitrary rankings!

Manu Vatuvei, an unfortunate victim of my screenshotting.

5. Manu Vatuvei (and Loryn Reynolds) – Rumba

Vatuvei is probably famous to most of you as playing for the Boost Mobile Warriors! This is literally the first time I’m encountering him, which made two of the lads in our office express disbelief, like I’m not the guy who has a floral for every day of the fortnight.

I digress. Manu Vatuvei! He’s nice to watch! I appreciate his open jacket. He has a natural performer’s charisma that makes me kind of forget any time that he might mess up or look awkward because I feel grateful watching him. That will take him a long way on this show, trust me.

But mostly, I appreciate Loryn Reynolds. What a bloody star. I will spend a not inconsiderable amount of my time in the next few months watching this show, and I’m genuinely excited to see her perform next week too.

Judge’s score: 20.

K’Lee, being a boss.

4. K’Lee (and Scott Cole) – Quick step

I love K’Lee! This was really lovely and great! She moved quickly, she was really present and lively throughout the whole thing. Often contestants can feel like they’re subsuming their personality or their natural charm in order to dance, but K’Lee totally shows off the kind of goofy charm that I assume makes her a great radio personality when she dances. It, hopefully, bodes well for her.

Also, I dig a sketchy concept for a dance. I’m a little bit basic sometimes! Remember, this is how I spent my Monday night. I don’t even know what a Stark is! (I do, I watched two seasons of that show and stopped right around the point where Tori Amos gave birth to a black fart.)

Anyway, I hope she stays around until she can dance to her own song, and if that doesn’t happen soon, it will be a crime against everything.

Judge’s score: 18, and now is as good a time as any to say that I think the judges are way harsher on women than they are on dudes! I have no more commentary on this at this stage, but watch this space because god knows I’ll run out of things to talk about around week three or four.

Clinton Randell, in a truly terrible screenshot on my part.

3. Clinton Randell (and Brittany Coleman) – Quick step

I haven’t listened to the radio in about ten years, so a breakfast radio host is pretty unknown to me, so forgive me when I say this: Randell is super charming! No wonder someone hired him to talk to hundreds of thousands of people first thing in the morning! I am charmed.

Also, this was a super strong debut. He seemed incredibly confident, which is especially notable because I can’t imagine many men walking out on that stage in leopard print and looking confident.

Well done, Randell! No shade here.

Judge’s score: 23.

2. Mike McRoberts (and Kirstie McWilliams) – Foxtrot

Look, you don’t care what I think about Mike McRoberts dancing. You just want to look at him.

He was quite good.

Judge’s score: 19.

Anna Wilcox, also a victim of my bad screenshotting.

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1. Anna Wilcox (and Brad Coleman) – Tango

It takes about forty seconds for Anna Wilcox to bring up that well loved and much abused New Zealand word: Banter. It’s one of the few words in the English language that seems designed for our wheels-on-a-gravel-road-accent to say. That does not make it good.

Anyway, I think we’ve got a winner here! She’s a sports star, she’s also a media personality, she’s super charming and she came out strong in the first week, even the judges loved her. Even Dai commented on how good it was, which he literally never does. I would know! I watch this show more than the medically recommended amount!

Barring a big screw-up later in the competition, or the public inexplicably not liking her, Anna’s here to stay.

Judge’s score: 23.


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