A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that while there's some good-natured sparring between the contestants on this reality competition/game show -- in which amateur dancers show off their moves while competing for a large cash prize -- it's lighthearted, fun, and family-friendly overall. There's some mild sexual innuendo, including occasional pelvic thrusts, butt shaking, and very subtle references to homosexuality that will go over the head of young viewers.
What's the story?
DANCE MACHINE is a fun, family-friendly game show in which amateur dancers from all walks of life show off their moves while competing for $100,000. In each episode, six competitors strut their stuff in a series of one-on-one competitions. The winner of each round (as decided by the studio audience) gets to move on to the freestyle semifinals, where the three remaining dancers perform to the song of their choice and get to use props in their choreography. The two dancers who earn the most audience votes in the semifinals then face each other in the \"dance-off.\" Whoever wins that round gets the money and the Dance Machine title.
Is it any good?
The series, which is hosted by TV personality Jason Kennedy, offers plenty of entertaining moments as the dancers do their best to impress the audience with their finest dance club moves. Some contestants -- especially those with a background in sports or martial arts -- actually demonstrate some real talent. But whether or not the dancers have rhythm, their obvious love of dancing makes it hard not to root for them. Also amusing are the antics of DJ Rodney, who enjoys dressing up and playing some great tunes.
It's true that winning a cash prize is likely the biggest reason that these people are willing to boogie on television -- but this show also focuses on how much fun they have doing it. Kids who like dancing or like to watch dancing will probably enjoy the show and might even be inspired to work on their own moves. While there's some very mild sexual innuendo and some extremely subtle references to homosexuality, overall the series is pretty mild and makes for family-friendly entertainment.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the popularity of dance competition shows. Do you think these shows challenge or support stereotypes about men and women who dance? How? What stereotypes are out there to begin with? Families can also discuss what makes people willing to participate in shows like this. Would you want to go on national television if you had the chance to dance or do something else that you loved to do? What would that "something" be?