Skating With the Stars debuted last night, and although British host Vernon Kay (no Tom Bergeron) did his best to repeatedly assure us that this was the most dangerous live competition on TV — “The performances will be just as explosive, the costumes even tinier, but there is an added element of danger — razor-sharp blades of steel strapped to the feet of six very nervous stars!” — no one even fell during their debut performances. At least we got some serious spills in the training montages. (Vince Neil fell more than all the other contestants combined, we were told.) After all, Kay promised, “If you like watching celebrities fall over, and let’s face it who doesn’t, then you’ve come to the right place.”
So essentially, this is Dancing With the Stars on Ice, only the pros have a tougher time covering for their partner if he or she sucks, because the celebrity can’t stand still while the professional does all the fancy footwork around him or her. Each week, contestants will perform a routine that must include certain required elements. Last night’s were the one-foot assisted glide and the pair spin. The judges — Johnny Weir, Dick Button, and Lady Gaga choreographer Laurieann Gibson — will give them two scores, technical and merit, which account for 50 percent of their overall score. Audience votes determine the other half. The first contestant will get the boot at the end of next week’s show, so everyone gets to take the ice at least twice.
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