Dancin' on Air is back! The teen-oriented dance show ran from 1981 to 1987 on local Philadelphia TV and spawned a national version, Dance Party USA (aka the greatest show that ever was). Last year, PHL17 aired a few reruns and reunion clip shows of the original Dancin', and now destiny has ordained that the Philly area be blessed with all-new episodes featuring all-new teens dancing to the freshest hits of today (and some songs by people that they are interested in because they died, like Whitney Houston and Michael Jackson).
It's crazy that this took so long. Not since the disco era has dance music been such a hot commodity — seven of the Top 10 songs on the 2011 year-end Billboard Hot 100 chart contain some riff on four-on-the-floor beats (two others are otherwise beat-based and dancey) and house tracks are a go-to safety net for otherwise non-housey albums (Drake and Rihanna recently hit the Top 10 with the uncharacteristically stompy title track of his sophomore album, Take Care). Kids never stopped wanting to be on TV (if anything, YouTube probably has made them feel more entitled to fame) and so collecting a bunch of them and turning cameras on them while they do weird, PG-rated things with their bodies is a no-brainer.
And oh, is the new Dancin' on Air special. The vibe is somewhere between a cable-access train wreck and an SNL skit. The seams show, the frighteningly enthusiastic hosts say strange things in their funny Philly accents, the cameras swirl off course, the gimmicks and crowd-sourced interviews keep the show moving while the bodies rest. The result is something that is just as cheesy as the original incarnation. They couldn't have made this more authentically Dancin' on Airy if they tried.
Right now this show only seems to be running in the Philly area, but since I have family there, I'll be keeping up with it and posting developments as they arise. Even if I didn't have family there, I'd still find a way.