‘Dancing (Disney) With (Disney) the (Disney) Stars’

Even the Patrick Swayze tribute left me wondering if Disney had owned him, too.

 

What kind of fool do you think I am, Disney? Is there no limit to your deceit? (As if trying to pass Zac and Vanessa off as a couple weren’t bad enough.)
 
In Tuesday’s column I bemoaned the time commitment that ABC’s “Dancing With the Stars” requires. And, predictably, last night’s results show rivaled “The Mystery of Al Capone’s Vault” in the fluff-n-filler department.
 
But it was the content of the fluff that shocked me. The episode was a schizophrenic but blatant advertisement for Disney. Granted, I shouldn’t have been surprised. I mean, remember when the whole “TGIF” lineup took a vacation to Walt Disney World? 
 
“DWTS” is not a “tween” show; therefore, there is no need to debut the new Miley Cyrus video — unless your show is on a network owned by a corporation that owns Miley Cyrus. (Or maybe it is a tween show …  Look, there’s Sean Kingston! Huh?)
 
As if the Miley plug weren’t annoying enough, Disney/ABC/DWTS then had the nerve to feature the Broadway cast of “The Lion King” performing “Circle of Life.” 
 
I get it. “Broadway” goes with “dancing.” 
 
Still, it seemed to be a bit of a stretch. Besides, as much as I love “The Lion King,” I prefer the Disney-produced “Aida” or “Beauty and the Beast.” But, weird! Neither of these shows is currently playing on Broadway. It would be a waste to feature these shows just for the sake of art, right? Thankfully “Mary Poppins” is still around and — mark my words — they will find a way to promote it.
 
While the tribute to Patrick Swayze was moving and seemed to actually pertain to dance, its presence still left me wondering if Disney had owned him at any point. Why would they include it if they had nothing to gain? How kind of him to die during premiere week. Don’t be offended. They are practically training us to think cynically!
 
Believe it or not, I am fan of Disney. (Ariel is my favorite!) In fact, I even worked at EPCOT in college. But I am not as naive now as I was back when they were deducting my rent money straight out of my check and giving me minimal pay to flip burgers.
 
Your audience isn’t as dumb as you think, Disney. And btw — that goes for you, too, Fox.
 
Oh, and as a footnote, my rage will not hinder me from redeeming my free Disneyland pass for my birthday today. (Thanks, Mickey!) I will do some investigative journalism there to see what other propaganda they are feeding us. (Investigation will mainly take place at Space Mountain.) And btw, Mickey, if you could get me entrance to Club 33 for my, uh, 23rd that would be terrific.
 
I can’t wait to see what other synergistic surprises Disney and “DWTS” has in store for us. I’m guessing there will be more than a few, up until the winning couple ends the season with an enthusiastic “We’re going to Disneyland!”