By Annie Barrett
Updated March 01, 2011 at 09:34 PM EST

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Image Credit: Everett Collection; Maksim Chmerkovskiy: ABCWell, well, well. I’m sure you’ve been on the edges of your sequined armchairs waiting for my reaction to the new DWTS cast. Sorry about the delay — I had to spend the entire day figuring out who the hell these people are. Just kidding! Google is easy. No, I spent much of the day seeking out the rumored Star-Pro pairings for season 12.

Sadly, Enthusiastic Activia Lady Jamie Lee Curtis could not find time in her busy schedule of eating yogurt and crafting paper bracelets to answer my late November prayers. WTF, EAL?

The couples in the running for season 12’s COVETED MIRRORBALL TROPHY…. are…. coming up, after the break!


Kirstie Alley and Maksim Chmerkovskiy

Ralph Macchio and Karina Smirnoff

Sugar Ray Leonard and Anna Trebunskaya

WWE star Chris Jericho and Cheryl Burke

E! boobmonger Kendra Wilkinson and Louis van Amstel

Wendy Williams and Tony Dovolani

Rapper Lil Romeo and Chelsie Hightower

Disney actress Chelsea Kane and Mark Ballas

Footballer Hines Ward and Kym Johnson

“Psycho” Mike Catherwood and Lacey Schwimmer

Petra Nemcova and Dmitry Chaplin (Welcome back!)

ABC’s official announcement is tomorrow.

I’m most excited about Kirstie and Maks. The Fat Actress and TV’s Ukrainian Bachelor have now both carried shows on their own, so I expect this to be a totally insane weight loss/sitcom/soap opera/reality show wrapped up very ungracefully into a low-fat sun-dried tomato pita. For a preview of what to expect from Kirstie in the spotlight, watch all 13 episodes of HBO’s The Comeback and then imagine Valerie Cherish eating her feelings for 15 more years. Boom.

Even though this stable of extra-fringed My Little Ponies has less star power than we’ve seen in some other seasons, I’m pretty much cool with anyone at this point. My DWTS enjoyment is never really dependent on the Stars, anyway. For me, it’s about the things that will never ever change: our fearless hosts Tom and Boobs, the crazy set, Bruno’s salacious verbal warfare, inexplicable song choices, assorted sparkly ridiculata, and — of course — Our Pros. They could throw in a toasted Ritz cracker into the mix and I’d be amused. (Oh wait, they did, in season 2.)

In fact, my general reaction to this cast has been best summed up by esteemed gem-hunter JH, who commented: “People complain like this every year the cast is revealed. I don’t know much about them, sure, but I’ve still at least heard of eight out of the 11. And you know what? I don’t care anyway. I enjoy getting to know the personalities I might not otherwise be exposed to. I’d never heard of Kyle Massey last year, and look what a joy he was to watch! I really like that there seems to be no obvious frontrunner in the bunch. I’m looking forward to the show, Annie’s recaps, and gem hunting! Bring it on!”

Oh, it’s already been buh-rought-en.


The Fringe Fairy

P.S. The Photoshopped image is Maks’ face over Patrick Dempsey’s from 1989’s Loverboy, because why wouldn’t I do that?

[Rumors via TMZ]

Read more:

‘Dancing With the Stars’ season 12 cast revealed

‘DWTS’: Annie’s 30 Finest Hidden Gems of 2010

Departing pro Derek Hough’s best Hidden Gems’s ‘Dancing With the Stars’ Central

Follow EW’s ‘Dancing’ queen Annie Barrett on Twitter

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