Dave on Demand: Why not a "Dancing With the Olympians"?

Posted: August 12, 2012

Congratulations, Ryan Lochte. You just won five medals at the London Olympics. What's next?

He's going to Hollywood!

That's right. The strapping swimmer has announced his intention to move to Los Angeles. Lochte's agent (that's like a coach who takes 15 percent of everything you own) says that he has already been pitched a number of reality-show concepts in which his client could star.

Everyone wants a piece of Ryan. Bachelor host Chris Harrison, referring to his boss, Mike Fleiss, tweeted: "@Fleissmeister just told me he liked Ryan Lochte in his speedo so much he's now on short list for #Bachelor."

Asked by Josh Elliott on Good Morning America if a turn as the rose-giver might appeal to him, Lochte said he was leaning more toward Dancing With the Stars because it fit more with his competitive nature.

(You have to wonder if he's ever seen The Bachelor. It's more cutthroat than The Hunger Games.)

Meanwhile, another guy who's enjoyed a little success in the pool, Michael Phelps, has also expressed interest in getting his tango on for Dancing With the Stars.

"I haven't really been known for my dancing," he said. "I know everyone who's done it - I've talked to Apolo [Ohno] and Natalie [Coughlin] about it, and they said they've enjoyed it and had a blast."

(He's being a little modest about his dancing. His jet├ęs on the pool deck at Beijing prior to the 100-meter butterfly are legendary.)

But wouldn't it be great if these two renewed their epic rivalry on the dance floor? Sure, they can swim, but can they salsa?

Phelps and Lochte are the chlorinated version of Frazier and Ali, a sopping-wet Bird and Magic. Now, let Bruno Tonioli decide the ultimate winner!

Are you getting goose bumps?

Dancing could even follow its All Star edition this fall with an All Olympic field next winter.

Let's set the standards high. Say you need a silver medal or better to qualify. (Sorry, Lolo.) What a cast ABC could assemble: Gabby Douglas, Ashton Eaton, Carli Lloyd, Matt Grevers, Allyson Felix. . . . Let's just say we would not lack for dancing partners.

This is hardly a radical idea, by the way. Olympic athletes and reality shows go together like track and field.

Who can forget Be Good Johnny Weir, a series built around the hectic life of the full-time Rufus Wainwright impersonator and part-time skater?

And the husk of Bruce Jenner, who as a record-setting decathlete was once known as "the world's greatest athlete," has been living out his life as a luggage handler on Keeping Up With the Kardashians.

Hey, Lochte, how about a reality show where you and a handful of other athletes train for a black-ops mission to liberate Jenner from his degrading imprisonment?

Call it Breaking Into the Kardashians. Feel free to act with extreme prejudice.

A lovely bunch of bananas. This week, TV Guide published a list of the best-paid actors on the tube. It offends me that Mark Harmon gets $500,000 per episode of NCIS and Ashton Kutcher $700,0000 for each installment of Two and a Half Men, but I can live with it.

The figure that continues to stick in my craw is $12,000 an episode. That's how much Crystal, the capuchin monkey on NBC's new sitcom Animal Practice, is making. Figure 22 shows and she's pulling down $264,000. And that's not counting endorsements and personal appearances.

From the comedy catacombs. The trade papers announced this week that the TV sitcom ALF is being adapted to the big screen. You remember ALF, the wisecracking, cat-eating alien from the '80s? Not so much? I think the producers of this project may have missed their window - by about 20 years.


Contact David Hiltbrand

at 215-854-4552 or dhiltbrand@phillynews.com,

or follow on Twitter @daveondemand_tv. Read his blog, "Dave on Demand," at www.philly.com/dod.

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