‘Dancing with the Stars 21’ spotlight: Will Hayes Grier, Emma Slater begin a youth movement?

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Dancing with the Stars” season 21 has assembled a pretty interesting array of celebrities this season, and while Hayes Grier is not someone we were even aware of going into this season, there’s no denying that to some people out there, he is a star. He’s got four million followers on Vine, almost as many on Twitter, and he will bring in young viewers to the show in a way that someone like Gary Busey or Paula Deen will not. (Granted, we’re still not sure that there is a big correlation yet between social media support and TV ratings. Time will tell.)

Hayes is the youngest contestant this season, and he should be able to pick up the moves quickly. Granted, there are still plenty of questions about whether or not he will have any dancing talent, since going out there and performing is much easier said than done.

Name – Hayes Grier

Age – 15

Claim to fame – He is mostly famous for his work on Vine, but he also is very popular on a variety of other social-media platforms. This is the second star of this variety that ABC has cast over the years, as they previously booked someone at least reasonably similar in YouTube star Bethany Mota.

Partner – Emma Slater. We are extremely happy to see Emma get someone very different on the show this season! For the most part, her partners over the years have either been older (Billy Dee Williams) or goofier (Redfoo), and this is a chance for her to actually work with someone who is young, energetic, and allows her to do something completely different.

Strengths – There are both positives and negatives when it comes to Grier’s age, but what he has going for him is that typically, younger dancers are able to pick up the moves easier. They also have more energy, and if he has some of the rhythm, he could really be a contestant to watch. Also, if he and his other famous Vine stars all support him, he could have a lot of votes coming his way in the early going.

Weaknesses – Now, let’s talk a little bit about the downside to Grier’s age: We’re not sure how much time he will have to really rehearse for the show, and he is going to have to work to win over the show’s primary demographic, who are all at least twice as old if not older. Even if he is very good, many other young people who are relative unknowns to the primary demographic going into the season have a hard time winning.

Prediction – We would be stunned if Hayes leaves early, mostly because we do think that he will be for the most part pretty good at this. Our feeling is that he is going to finish somewhere in the top six or seven, and could even get to the top five or four.

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