So You Think You Can Sit at Home and Watch Other People Dance?

Dear America,
That’s right, we’re talkin’ the nation at large. I have a simple question and maybe it’s not an easy one to answer, but I’ll go ahead and ask it anyway… what’s with the dancing? So You Think You Can Dance, Dancing with the Stars, and now Live to Dance which, judging from Abdul’s past, may or may not include a 2 drink minimum for each of the contestants. We get it, for some reason, America loves to watch other people dance. How many Americans go out and dance themselves? Well, I can’t really tell you, but I feel pretty safe in saying that the numbers aren’t quite the same.

But here’s where the confusion is… why watch people dance? Yes, I understand that these are professionals so they dance it better than the average folks at home, but it’s not like you see too many people clamoring to take lessons to improve their dancing skills. You don’t even see this kind of leap in viewership for ballroom competitions or other dance competitions on TV. To be honest, I think that gets to me most is the fact that we’re talking about dancing competition shows. It isn’t something like Fear Factor where you have to eat ground up bull testicles or something. It’s nothing disgusting or dangerous. It’s alarmingly attainable (not easy, mind you, but do-able) and yet people are more content to sit on their couches and watch others experience it than do something themselves.

Then again, I probably shouldn’t be surprised… with the birth of reality TV, we saw the death of the experiential. Why bother trying when you can watch other people succeeding, and cheer for them, but guard yourself enough so that you can laugh at them when they fail? It’d be the perfect system if it wasn’t so disheartening…



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