Fun_People Archive
26 Mar
Gotta Dance! (What were they thinking?)

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From: Peter Langston <psl>
Date: Sun, 26 Mar 100 10:56:09 -0800
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Subject: Gotta Dance!  (What were they thinking?)

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        Gotta Dance
        by Joel Perry

I am dressed completely in black.  Not because it's West Hollywood, or I'm
into goth, or because I have no imagination and I'm incapable of color
coordinating like all the other people who do it, but because I am in
mourning.  The powers that be have announced that for this year's Academy
Awards presentation there is to be no dance number.  How could they do this
to us?  Every Oscar telecast for the past decade has allowed millions of
homosexuals to howl with hilarity at the Debbie Allen Dance Number, that
cobbled-together orgy of poorly thought out dance moves designed to
illustrate the connecting theme of the nominated pictures.  That theme, at
least as far as we were concerned, was always "What were they thinking?"
As bad as you knew it would be, there would always come at least one
jaw-dropping moment of truly transcendently stupid choreography.  Entire
gay ghettos would erupt with screams to spouses in the kitchen, "Get in
here!  You gotta see this!"  Couples and friends would watch with hands over
their mouths, not daring to move until it was over, and then shriek in
gleeful horror.  It was the hoot heard round the world.

The Debbie Allen Dance Number has won a cherished place in the pantheon of
dependably bad ideas.  It was as if every idea Cher rejected as being too
embarrassing, even for her show, flowed downstream to collect in the cloaca
maxima that was the Debbie Allen Dance Number.  It was staged annually in
bare skin, glitter, G-strings and top hats.  It was a train wreck with
lasers and flying by Foy.  It was heterosexual high camp.

The Academy said the dance number was "inappropriate."  Well, duh!  They
just figured this out?  Of course it was inappropriate!  That's what Hollywood
is about.  Maybe in another 72 years they'll figure out giving Adam Sandler
$20 million a picture is inappropriate.  The Academy also said the Debbie
Allen Dance Number was "undignified."  They were wrong.  It was fucking
god-awful and that was its genius.  It made us feel superior to an entire
auditorium full of beautiful, rich and glamorous movie stars who, every
other day of the year, we wished we could be.  But during that 15-minute
dancing debacle we saw the Hollywood hotshots for the high-rent trailer
trash they are.  If the Debbie Allen Dance Number was Hollywood's idea of
sophistication, doing "Y.M.C.A." at your cousin's wedding reception at the
Ramada didn't look so bad.  If this was the best choreography Tinseltown
could come up with, line dancing at the rodeo suddenly seemed downright
elegant.  And if the whole thing became truly unforgivable, which is to
say dull, we could always go to the kitchen for a microwaved burrito.  Not
even Nicholson can do that.

If I can't get my Debbie Allen Dance Number I don't think I'll even watch
the Oscars this year.  This year the Academy is giving a special Lifetime
Achievement Award to Warren Beatty.  I can think of only about 20 people
closer to death who deserve it more, but at least the ceremony will end
before my Medicare kicks in.

I know I'm straying from my subject of the Debbie Allen Dance Number, but
I'm bitter.  First they move the Awards to Sunday so you don't even get to
ditch work, and now this.  What's next?  No pre-show bitchiness with Joan
and her forgettable daughter, all because that's "undignified" and
"inappropriate"?  I've got news for the Academy: Oscar night is about the
industry bending around to kiss its own ass.  They don't save lives, they
make movies.  Movies that are undignified, inappropriate, trashy, gaudy,
amazing, and wonderful, but useless.  What could possibly exemplify, nay,
glorify that better than the Debbie Allen Dance Number?

If you need to save time, get rid of that Parade of This Year's Dead reel.
Not only does it bring down the room but it reminds us of who we should
have picked in the online Death Pool.  Lose the Irving Thal-butt
Time-to-go-to-the-Bathroom Award.  Stop hiring presenters who can't dress
or read.  But don't take away our Debbie Allen Dance Number.  It was the
very essence of all the soaring, glittering crap that Hollywood squeezes
out and we can't get enough of.  We need it!  Screw presidential politics,
I'm starting a petition for the 73rd Annual Academy Awards.  If you believe
choreography should be overbudgeted, overblown, underrehearsed, and
televised globally, sign and mail the form below and change the world for
the worse.

Dear Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences,

Puhleeeeeeeze give us back our Debbie Allen Dance Number!

(Signed) __________________________

The dance disaster you save could be your own.

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