Skating With the Stars crowned its first winner last night.  I’m sure it comes as no surprise that Rebecca Budig took home the crown, since she was the only one who could skate right from the start.  She competed in the finale against Bethenny Frankel, which also isn’t surprising.  Brandon Mychal Smith cheered on from the audience, even though he left the show early due to a “stomach virus,” which was probably just a fancy way of saying he didn’t feel like skating anymore.  And who could blame him?  The show’s ratings took a nosedive after the first episode.  Will Skating return for a second season?  Only time will tell, but I won’t hold my breath.

I admit I wasn’t expecting much of Skating With the Stars.  I was right to feel that way.  It’s basically Dancing With the Stars on ice skates, only not nearly as interesting.  What we got was more of the same, right down to the choice of judges.  Just as in Dancing, we had the flamboyant young guy, the codgy old stodger, and the token female.  Bruno, Len, and Carrie Ann anyone?  The host, Vernon Kay (who?), didn’t seem confident or even comfortable in front of the camera.  I found his constant wide-eyed stares to be distracting.

Johnny Weir's poker face

Each contestant was given 2 moves they had to perform during their routine, but that was basically the only rule.  Luckily, we had a random disembodied head, who was actually retired Ice Dancer, Tanith Belbin, pointing out the moves afterward, so people who know nothing about skating (like me), would notice it and be impressed.  Then they were each

What's with those eyes?

judged for both technical and artistic merits.  I was right about Vince Neil not being able to get out of his own way, as he received the lowest score of the night.  Rebecca Budig and Jonny Moseley received the top scores.  The others were barely mediocre.  I couldn’t bring myself to care though.  Dancing may arguably be full of “has beens,” but Skating has stars who can’t even aspire to be “has beens.”  The judging itself was fairly tame too, with no Bruno Tonioli jumping out of his seat at every given opportunity.  The highlight of the show was judge Johnny Weir performing to Lady Gaga’s “Poker Face.”

I’m hoping, as the contestants get more experience, the show will pick up speed and we’ll get to see a bit mmore excitement on the ice.  Otherwise, I probably won’t give Skating With the Stars much hope.

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Name: Vince Neil
Age: 49
Claim to Fame: Vocalist and Musician for Motley Crue

Vince Neil certainly had a colorful life.  In addition to being part of Motley Crue from 1981-1992, he has had several business ventures, such as a vineyard, clubs, a restaurant, and Vince Neil Racing.  After crashing his car, he gave up on the racing stint though.  I guess he never heard the saying, “If you fall off the horse, get right back on.”  Or maybe he just didn’t want to die.  He has been married 4 times.  A couple of really sad things: In 1984, Vince Neil was charged with DUI and manslaughter when the car he was driving his another car head on and the 2 occupants suffered were seriously injured and suffered brain damage, which made me angry.  Then, in 1995, Vince’s 4 year old daughter died of Cancer, which made me feel bad for him.  My emotions are all sorts of confused.

He was also involved in several other legal ramifications.  On Skating With the Stars, I’m not sure he’ll be able to get out of his own way honestly.

Skating With the Stars premieres on November 22, 2010!

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Name: Sean Young
Age: 50
Claim to Fame: Film Actress

At 50, Sean Young is the oldest contestant on Skating With the Stars, which I’m sure will be a challenge…especially if she has a new injury every week like Jennifer Grey does in Dancing With the Stars.  Sean worked as a model and dancer before becoming an actress, and has appeared in numerous films since the 1980’s, such as Blade Runner, Fatal Instinct, and Kingpin.

Skating With the Stars premieres on November 22, 2010!

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Name: Brandon Mychal Smith
Age: 21
Claim to Fame: Disney Channel actor

Brandon Mychal Smith definitely has age on his side.  The youngest contestant on Skating With the Stars, I’m sure he’ll be able to handle the physical demands more than the others.  Brandon is another one of those obscure Disney channel stars.  He had roles in Phil of the Future (which I totally loved), Sonny with a Chance, and Starstruck.  In addition to acting, Brandon is a singer and rapper.

Skating With the Stars premieres on November 22, 2010!

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Name: Rebecca Budig
Age: 37
Claim to Fame: Greenlee Smythe on All My Children

Rebecca Budig first made her appearance on Aerosmith’s music video Living on the Edge, then later appeared briefly in Batman Forever, before landing a role on Guiding Light and then All My Children.  Rebecca was previously contacted to appear on Dancing With the Stars, but the timing was never right.  Maybe she was just holding out for a skating version, thinking her tiny 5′ 1″ frame will give her an advantage.  Maybe that’s just pure speculation on my part and holds no basis in truth.  Rebecca being the youngest of 8 children, I will be expecting a lot of temper tantrums though, and those are always fun to watch.

Skating With the Stars premieres November 22, 2010!

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Name: Jonny Moseley
Age: 35
Claim to Fame: Member of the U.S. Ski Team

Jonny Moseley

Jonny Moseley competed in the 1998 Winter Olympics in Japan where he brought home a gold medal.  He competed again in the 2002 Olympics, but came in fourth.  As far as Jonny’s television stints go, he was the host of the MTV reality show Real World/Road Rules Challenge for 3 seasons.

I’m guessing Jonny will go far in Skating With the Stars.  I know skiing is a whole different ball of wax from figure skating, but they both involve sliding around on cold stuff, so how different can they really be?  I kid, people, I kid.  But still, he’s an athlete and very used to competing.

Skating With the Stars premieres on November 22, 2010!

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Name: Bethenny Frankel
Age: 40
Claim to Fame: The Real Housewives of New York City

If you’re anything like me, you were scraching your head when the cast was announced for the upcoming first season of Skating With the Stars.  I had to look quite a few of them up just to find out who they were.  That’s where my Meet the Contestant posts come in for this train wreck waiting to happen.

A natural foods chef, Bethenny Frankel is best known for her role in The Real Housewives of New York City, which produced the spinoff series Bethenny Getting Married?, but she got her start in television on The Apprentice: Martha Stewart, where she placed second.

An interesting tidbit: Bethenny appeared nude on a billboard in Times Square as part of a PETA campaign in 2009, because apparently you can be nude on billboards in New York City.

Skating With the Stars premieres on November 22, 2010!

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What happens when Dancing with the Stars is over for the season?  ABC asked themselves that same question.  Then someone got a brilliant idea for which they probably received a raise.  “Let’s put these stars on ice skates!”  Hmm, sounds familiar.  Oh, yeah!  Anyone remember Skating with Celebrities from a few years ago?  What Skating with the Stars will do is take some out of work celebrities that everyone has forgotten about and pair them up with “world class ice skaters.”  The cast of Skating with the Stars will be revealed on the November 2nd Dancing with the Stars results show.

Personally, I think they should take this one step further and make it hockey skates.  It would be interesting to see what a bunch of frustrated has-beens would do with ice, skates, and hockey sticks.  As for Skating with the Stars?  You bet I’m going to watch it!