Last night, Miss Arkansas, Savvy Shields, was crowned Miss America 2017. She also won the talent portion of the evening with her jazz routine—and that certainly doesn’t happen often. (The last time was in 2006, when Miss Oklahoma, Jennifer Berry, won the preliminary talent portion with her pointe number.) And she said one of her dreams is to be one of Beyoncé’s backup dancers on her “Formation” tour! YASS.
Check out a clip of Shields performing in the preliminaries:
This reminded me of some of my favorite beauty pageant films—and their equally horrifying and entertaining talent portions. And since any good blog post needs a montage or at least a video compilation, may I offer you three of my favorite so-bad-it’s-good dance scenes from beauty pageant movies.
First up is Miss Rhode Island’s fire baton-twirling talent from Miss Congeniality, that gem of the year 2000. No, there isn’t a lot of dancing, necessarily, but Candice Bergen’s face when the batons light up the first time makes it all worthwhile. I stand by my statement that everyone involved deserved Oscars.
Then there’s Drop Dead Gorgeous, maybe the best beauty pageant parody movie this world will ever see. What you’re about to see—Denise Richards sings “Can’t Take My Eyes Off You” to a stuffed Jesus on a crucifix and then dances with the crucifix around the stage—sounds sacrilegious. And it is. But that doesn’t mean you won’t enjoy it profoundly.
But nothing—nothing—beats Olive’s dance routine from Little Miss Sunshine. She has the trifecta of talent routine goodness: Her grandpa choreographed it for her; she wears breakaway pants; her entire family joins her onstage. (Though watch out for a couple of curse words.)