Spicing Up the Dance Floor
Updated: Sep 20, 2019
Sean Spicer, first infamously introduced as President Trump’s press secretary, will be joining the cast of ballroom dancers at “Dancing with the Stars.” But this time around, he won’t be assessing the size of the crowd at an inauguration, but rather counting the number of steps in a tango and memorizing the direction he should move his hips during the salsa. Spicer was happy to hear the news, but avid fans of the show, angry twitter-users, and even the judges themselves were a lot less thrilled. Tom Bergeron, host of Dancing with the Stars, tweeted on August 21st that he had hoped the show "would be a joyful respite from our exhausting political climate and free of inevitably divisive bookings from ANY party affiliations.”
The producers, however, told him they would be taking a different direction. Spicer responded about this prospective negative edit he’d be getting by saying that he too would prefer the upcoming 28th season to be politics-free as well."My hope is that at the end of the season, Tom looks back on this and realizes what a great example it was of being able to bring people of diverse backgrounds together to have fun with each other, engage in a real civil and respectful way, and maybe show millions of Americans how we can get back to that kind of interaction," Spicer told THR.
Twitter isn’t buying it though, and a throng of angry tweets attacking Spicer and the ABC Network have been uncovered, each tweet nastier than the one before. “Shameless. craven. Complicit. More like #DancingToFascism,” and “Screw you for helping to normalize Sean Spicer,” are some examples. Users think that ABC Network is in fact normalizing and ignoring Spicer’s behavior and his government tenure which was characterized by lying and deceit. Others think that bringing him on the show makes ABC complicit with Trump's policies and administration.
While the hate is overwhelming the love, one of Spicer’s cast-mates, Karamo Brown, was more supportive. The Queer Eye star said he was looking forward to having “respectful conversations” with Spicer, which triggered backlash from the public. A few days later, Brown deactivated his twitter account and turned off the comments feature on his Instagram, leading PEOPLE magazine to track him down and uncover why. Brown claimed he wanted to avoid further hateful comments and attacks. It makes people curious as to how other cast-mates will respond and treat Spicer on the show and what sort of edit the producers will be giving him, positive or negative.
Politics and entertainment have always clashed. Sean Spicer’s name carries a certain negative connotation and people have been quick to point that out. At the same time, people have been hopeful that audience members can enjoy the show and keep out all of the hate and controversy that politics brings. It’s hard to predict how it will turn out, but hopefully this season of Dancing with the Stars can be a fun one and people can find a bridge between their opposing views through the universal language of dance.