Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Strictly Come Stripping - The lows of the lowest of popular entertainment

No Brucey with his charismatic Forsyth charm introducing bow-tied gents and elegant, self respecting ladies to come and dance a graceful ballroom routine. No Len Goodman sharing an innocent joke with his little Italian sidekick as they judge contestants on their footwork and posture.

This is Canal 13's Bailando por un sueño (Dancing for a dream) and no one gives a toss about footwork.

If you want high scores here, then girls, get off your kit, flash a little leg, some cleavage, maybe even bend over and bare and bounce your blemish free butt cheeks, neatly separated by the G-ist of G strings, as the cameraman zooms in close enough to check all your most intimate details. Then proceed to take off what little is left and strut your stuff to Regaetton, Salsa and Hip-Hop as you emulate sex while riding your partner in positions straight out of the Karma-Sutra. What about the Argentine Tango some may ask. Don’t be silly, that would actually require wearing clothes, not to mention a dedication to dance.

One should of course, be excused for thinking that Dancing for a dream has anything to do with dance. People do dance but that’s not why people watch.

The brainchild of Marcelo Tinelli (Argentina’s most powerful television star, pictured left), and his Ideas del Sur production company, Showmatch: Bailando por un sueño, is all about personal scandals and arguments amongst contestants and judges. That’s what gets ratings. The dancing really doesn’t matter.

The show, in its sixth season, generally lasts from April until November/December. It airs nearly every weekday night and is analysed all day long by nigh on every other programme on every other channel.

Contestants talk openly about who’s screwing whom and who’s fighting with whom, while the five judges bicker like children and storm off when things get really out of control. (More often than not to head to Miami on holiday).

So far this year, the host Marcelo Tinneli has been serenaded by prospective future girlfriends, judges have secretly filmed one another on mobile phones and then splattered the media with the images. There have been the standard fall outs and constant name calling; and though thirty minute slanging matches are the norm, things did get interesting when seventy-six year old contestant Sarah Paddy Jones from the West Midlands in the UK took on Multi-millionaire heir to The Chocalates Felfort empire, judge Ricardo Fort when he slammed her partner’s performance, and hurled personal insults back and forwards.

The show has been accused of being pornographic and its ten-thirty p.m. broadcast time inappropriate in a country where young children are typically up past eleven. But it does appear that most of the female contestants, who are by and large celebrities for being celebrities, are willing to slut themselves up for media exposure. In some ways perhaps it is not so different to certain reality shows in other parts of the world.

But in a country absolutely obsessed with celebrity gossip and scandal, Bailando por un sueño continues to be the highest rated show, dominating television here. And these so-called celebrities know that tonguing their partner or rolling around on the floor with their feet up behind their head, will keep their image on the screens for fifteen seconds longer.

No Brucey, but then again, it is not for witty comments and cheesy humour that viewers tune in to Bailando por un sueño.


  1. It should be added that the basic premise of the show is that the celebrity is dancing with his/her non-celebrity partner to win money for the latter's favourite charity/cause.

  2. Sounds like my kind of telly!!

  3. Latinas sure are hot when they dance

  4. I've just installed iStripper, so I can have the sexiest virtual strippers on my taskbar.