OK, now that we're several weeks in, what do guys think of the format? I know several didn't like it before seeing it, but opinions change...
I think I REALLY like parts of this format. I like that the dancers are more easily judged by the public because they dance without another contestant. Too often in the past we've seen a weak partner spell doom for multiple contestants before the judges realize it was the weak partner causing the problem.
I love seeing our old favorites dance again. And to see their improvement since they were contestants. Courtney, Lauren, Kathryn, Mark - all sensational.
One thing I DON'T like - severely - is that the format has caused this ridiculous 6 guy to 2 girl inequity. Now they dance together, so we will have 2 guy-guy pairings ... not fair to any of those 4 dancers. I also don't like that we were down to 11 at the beginning, only able to see 1 week of dancing before making important decisions. WAY too fast to know how good they are.
Proposal: Next year ... keep the all-star partner format (mixing in more stars if possible). But after Vegas, it's 10 guys and 10 girls. Each week, we vote off 1 of each. Keep it equal at LEAST to the top 6 if not the top 4 - and THEN vote off individuals. This gives us a far better chance at really having 10 solid performers in the top 10. The Melinda's of the world go home early in favor of what could easily have been more likable dancers that didn't make this show at all.