Have you ever dreamed of finding the one? You see each other across a crowded room, and sparks fly. You just… know that they’re the person you are going to spend the rest of your life with. Maybe you meet at a club, and you dance. Well, that’s almost the idea behind Flirty Dancing. The reality show has two strangers dance together to see if sparks fly. However, there’s more to this show than meets the eye. We decided we had to know more about these twinkle-toed lovers, so we took a deep dive into what’s going on with the show. Here are ten things you didn’t know about Flirty Dancing.
1. Only on TV
Of all the amusing TV tropes, the idea that real life can break into spontaneously choreographed song and dance routines is perhaps the most surreal. While it’s not likely that anyone is walking around with a black mustache and a pithy line waiting to tie some damsel to the train tracks, it’s still more likely than two people meeting, and performing a choreographed bit of soft shoe magic. Yet that’s exactly what Flirty Dancing does by teaching two strangers half of a dance routine.
2. Setting the Scene
Naturally, some music and a foxtrot aren’t going to do the job alone. No, these willing blind dating strangers aren’t just meeting in some empty sound stage for their dance, the producers have set up stunning locations for the potential lovers to do their magic and see if they can hit it off. The goal is to let their bodies do the talking and see if sparks fly based on how they dance together.
3. Quiet on Set
While most reality shows, especially dating shows, are all about talking, that’s where Flirty Dancing goes off the reservation. Typically, a dating show is all about asking questions and seeing what you have in common with the person you’ve been set up with. In fact, some dating shows are entirely strangers aking questions without ever seeing each other. Flirty Dancing is the opposite. Dancers are instructed not to talk to each other. That’s right. It’s all about how they dance and move together. Participants on the show have to decide whether to go on another date without ever having a conversation. Physical attraction and sexy dance moves are everything.
4. Not So Great
For all the hype, things aren’t going so well for Flirty Dancing. We don’t mean the couples, they’re fine. However, the New Year’s Day episode pretty much bombed with audiences who should have been tuning in en masse to see the show deemed worthy of taking over for The Masked Singer. The ratings were less than stellar, though, so Flirty Dancing is already on thin ice. As a Fox show, we know the station isn’t opposed to canceling a good show, even when audiences love it. (Firefly, Greg the Bunny, we could make a list as long as our arms) Hopefully, we can chalk it up to post New Year’s Eve recovery time, and more people will check it out next week because the concept of this show is quite good.
5. Bringing Romance Back
There are a ton of dating shows that force scantily clad people together in overly orchestrated races to ‘win’ a date… and money. Typically it’s a lot of money. Moreover, there’s usually plenty of alcohol, and you ‘lose’ if you can’t force a romantic connection. It’s anything but old fashioned romance. After talking about everything that’s “…brutal and unromantic,” about modern dating shows, executive producer Jilly Pearce, showrunner Mike Yurchuk, and Objective Media Group decided that people were about ready for something better. Lingering eye contact, sensual dancing, and not just people running into bedrooms together for money seemed the way to go.
6. English Love Vs. US Love
The original version of Flirty Dancing aired in the UK. The US version is a bit different, but the concept is very similar. In the British version, the couples danced together, and that was it. However, for the US audiences, the participants have a chance to dance with two different people and choose who gets a second date. The other big change for the US market is that unlike Flirty Dancing UK, there are no same-sex couples. Fortunately, there are plans to diversify if there’s a second season.
7. It Went Viral
In spite of the abysmal ratings for the first episode, the video of two men dancing in the UK went viral on the internet. It’s not hard to see why. They’re clearly having so much fun together, without clubs, or drinks or even ice breakers and conversation. Before the US version of the show aired, people were watching and sharing the sweet video of men dancing and perhaps falling in love all over the world wide web.
8. Real People
One of the primary goals if Flirty Dancing isn’t to have ‘hot young singles’ who are there for their fifteen minutes of fame and a story to put on Instagram. Instead, the show worked hard to cast real people who are working through personal troubles getting back into the dating scene. People who are looking to make a real love connection instead of scoring a hookup and some cash are the targets for casting on this show. What you won’t see are a bunch of social media influencer wanna be’s trying to get their names out to the public.
9. Lost in Translation
Why did the British version go viral, and the US version tank its first episode? Esquire thinks they have the answer. Something was lost in translation when the American audience got a competition show instead of a more innocent one-on-one personal experience to view. Will it ultimately work out? There’s no way to tell unless we stay tuned.
10. The Secret
According to the researchers who helped make Flirty dancing happen, “In the 1950s, nearly 75% of couples met dancing.” Something about the physical exertion and sheer Joie de Vivre of moving together to music has always appealed to people. It still does, but now we don’t look for life long partners when we dance, just someone to share the night with. This is one show that aims to take back that romance by reminding us all why we dance.
We love Flirty Dancing and are sincerely hoping enough people tune in to give it a second season. However, we’re also hoping they ditch the competitive format and go back to what makes the show work. There’s something ultimately beautiful about two strangers meeting, and dancing together, then deciding whether the way they move in sync is enough to continue the conversation later. We’ll be bingeing this show for sure. What do you think? Is the US version as good as the UK, or should they go back to the other format?
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