After three weeks of competition, I’ve finally made my decision on who I will be voting for on “Dancing with the Stars.” I’m throwing all of my votes behind Nick Viall and Bonner Bolton.
Yes, you read that correctly. Not Heather Morris or Simone Biles (who I do love), but Nick Viall and Bonner Bolton.
I’m not claiming either one of them will make it to the finale; shocking eliminations can happen at any point during the season. But what I’ve seen from both of them is that they have what it takes to go far.
I’ll admit I did not think highly of either one’s skills when the cast was announced. Neither one is extremely athletic or have any sort of dance background. In fact, in this past week’s episode Viall confessed in his video package that he is an “average schmuck who spent more time looking for love the past few years than dancing.” Therefore, when I stacked them against some of the other contestants, like Biles, Morris or Rashad Jennings, these two did not seem like they had a chance to make the cut.
But I was wrong.
Viall came out of the gate and immediately impressed me with his hard work and determination to do well and win the mirrorball trophy. I have really enjoyed seeing him show off the more playful side of his personality, something I felt was largely absent from his latest stint as “The Bachelor.” Bolton, despite looking a little stiff while performing some of his moves, has demonstrated a real potential to shine in the ballroom.
Both of them also have fantastic partners in Peta Murgatroyd and Sharna Burgess. Each of these ladies have worked with differing levels of talent and dance expertise, so they can cultivate the potential these guys show. They all have started to form great relationships too. After watching this show for 23 seasons, I pretty much know firsthand how a celebrity’s experience with their pro can determine how things fair for the season (no one needs to relive the horror that was the Maksim Chmerkovskiy and Hope Solo pairing). Nick and Peta seem to be bonding over their shared experiences of being in new chapters of their life. And I know for a fact I’m not the only one who senses something brewing between Bonner and Sharna.
Viall’s best chance to not get eliminated from the competition is to relax more. We finally started to see him do this in week three, but he still needs to practice it more so all his movements will smooth out. Bolton’s best chance to excel is by nailing beautiful, but simple choreography, a la his performance in week two. This is not because his neck injury prevents him from doing the big lifts and tricks that make viewers go “ooh” and “ahh.” It’s because when he keeps it simple we see beauty start to unfold, and I’m not talking about the chemistry between him and Sharna. If both guys do these things we will get some great performances from contestants I initially didn’t expect to deliver.
The biggest reason I’m going to be voting for these two week in and week out: they both embody the true idea of this show, turning celebrities who have no professional dance experience into ballroom dancers. That describes the kind of contestants that Bolton and Viall are to a “T.”
These two have me excited for what I thought would be a boring and predictable season. Let’s just hope neither gets eliminated in Week 4.
“Dancing with the Stars” airs Mondays on ABC 8/7c