‘Dancing with the Stars’ season 17 spotlight: Elizabeth Berkley and Val Chmerkovskiy

Meet Elizabeth -There are contestants on “Dancing with the Stars” this coming fall that we know very well and are even fans of, and then others that we know based on “they were in X and Y.” Elizabeth Berkley falls more into the latter category. She is not someone who we grew up watching, but she is someone who we have at least heard about on multiple occasions over the years thanks to classic shows like “Saved by the Bell”. This is someone that therefore has more “star power” than the majority of people on in recent seasons.

But can Berkley really do well on a pretty solid season? She is right now one of the bigger toss-ups in our mind from a popularity standpoint, and that’s something that we are going to dive into now in the latest edition of our season 17 spotlight series.

Professional partner – Val Chmerkovskiy. He’s clearly popular as a member of the famous family of ballroom, and he also has a pair of consecutive final-3 appearances under his belt. With no Maksim around this season again, he is a nice alternative to the Derek Houghs and Mark Ballases of the world.

Strengths – Even though it seems like Berkley has been around forever, she is only 41 years old and looks to be in pretty great shape. She also (ringer alert!) took ballet extensively as a child, and her work in “Showgirls” (while you may hate the movie) required some training of its own. She’s going to be well-suited for getting high scores, and delivering both elegance and passion in the routines.

Weaknesses – She may be well-known by name, but we don’t know anyone doing cartwheels that Berkley is on the show. What is the fanbase like for an actress whose biggest credit is a movie largely considered to be a bust? She’s going to have to win people over, or could otherwise be a Chynna Phillips-type, a good dancer who gets sent home earlier than expected after a subpar performance.

Prediction – We see Berkley being a middle-of-the-pack performer at the end of the day, mostly because we don’t know if she is going to secure the sort of fan following the she would need. Her best-case scenario is third place a la Kelly Monaco, and if she stumbles out of the gate, there is a slight chance that she could even be first or second out. We just don’t think that she will dance poorly enough for this to happen.

Of course, be sure to vote on how you think Berkley will do below, and click here to check out some of the other contestants that we are profiling this season.

Photo: ABC



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