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 this glossy MTV reality show focuses on six young dancers looking for work in Los Angeles. The performers often wear revealing clothing and perform moves that are beautiful, athletic, and -- in many cases -- sexually suggestive. In typical reality-show fashion, the show's attention to the dancers' personal lives often hones in on conflict and makes the most of emotional scenes. Dancers are sometimes portrayed as jealous, pretentious, catty, and rude. Expletives are used regularly, and only some are bleeped.
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What's the story?
Executive produced by Jennifer Lopez, DANCELIFE follows the path of six emerging professional dancers as they audition and perform in the Los Angeles area. This reality show features amazing dancing and aims to capture the lifestyle of a dancer trying to break into the business. Lopez's voice-over introduction describes dance as a hard life, but a good one, because it's a labor of love. The hard part is well documented on screen as aspiring dancers juggle personal and professional challenges. Some get last-minute calls for auditions and have to get out of their day jobs fast; others experience family and financial pressures, and some hardly have time to enjoy the spoils of their latest success because they're already hustling off to their next job.
Is it any good?
Dancelife isn't just another reality show in a sea of plenty -- Lopez's involvement (she appears onscreen regularly) brings the series into the spotlight. Often accompanied by husband Marc Anthony, J-Lo shares her street-smart wisdom with the aspiring dancers -- she empathizes with them, having started out in their place. Viewers watch as she judges dancers' looks and abilities, getting a peek into not just show business, but J-Lo's business.
Aspiring dancers, actors, and others hoping for a shot in show business will recognize and appreciate the challenges that these performers face. For the rest of us, Dancelife offers a superficial guilty pleasure with celebs and eye candy galore.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about aspiring artists'/performers' struggles. Did you realize how much hard work goes into trying to make it big? Are teens interested in pursuing this kind of career? How likely is it that someone can make a career as a dancer, actor, or singer? Do you think jealousy and competition are a natural part of this type of work, or do you think it could be different? How do you think Jennifer Lopez's involvement affects this show? What does the show have in common with other reality series? How is it different?