Is there a Bristol Palin conspiracy?Or do names and phrases just sound ten times cooler if you add the word “conspiracy” to the end of them? Did someone eat my PB and J sandwich, or is there a PB and J sandwich conspiracy of which I am a victim?

bristol palin dancing with the stars

Mark Ballas could probably do that Star Trek hand gesture well, I can’t get my ring finger to stick out like that. Boom, another conspiracy – he’s an alien!

Bristol Palin is a curious creature to write about when it comes to Dancing with the Stars. She’s a celebrity by proxy because her mother is Sarah Palin (whose dancing encouragement involves barking “dominate!”) Of course, every week we’re reminded that Bristol is also a teen activist. Okay. Sure. We pause to acknowledge this while shrugging it off. There seems to be very little weight to this title when it comes to Palin.

dancing with the stars bristol palin

Doing a rain dance to get votes? Nah.

But Bristol’s also turned out to not be a very natural dancer. And this is okay, most of us aren’t as graceful as we are in dream sequences involving clouds and Fred Astaire.

In DWTS, the idea is for the best dancer to win. Popularity is also factored in, and somewhere talent and likability usually collide for a deserving winner. That is, if you can say anyone deserves a tacky mirror ball trophy (and why can’t we just call it what it is: a disco ball! I could replicate that trophy in about fifteen minutes if you gave me a glue gun, mmmkay? And if you make the argument that it’s all about the principle of winning, let’s be honest and say that everyone on this show just wanted more publicity*.)

bristol palin dwts

Not the most attractive picture of Bristol Palin OR Mark Ballas.

In the case of Bristol, she has survived many eliminations where better dancers were sent home (see: Audrina Patridge, Rick Fox, Kurt Warner – who can now build an awesome clubhouse where they plot against her!)

Something is keeping Palin on the show and whether it’s sympathy votes, Alaskans, Republicans who want to support the Palin family, genuine fans of this underdog, or even pranksters, it’s getting frustrating. More than that, Bristol Palin seems smart enough to have realized that she’s upsetting the balance of the show, and might actually wish she’d be booted. For now, she’ll dance another day. And we can only hope it’ll involve another animal costume. Hell, maybe it’s a group of furries that is voting her through every week. That theory is as likely as some others.

dancing with the stars

We all know not to put baby in a corner. Let's not put anyone into the center of a conspiracy, either.

Bristol is getting lots of media attention now. Do you suppose this girl with what appears to be fragile self-esteem subscribes to the mantra that “all publicity is good publicity”? She has disavowed knowledge of Operation Bristol (which sounds more like a fun silly thing than a serious operation.) But it’s very possible that her Mother’s supporters do vote for Bristol, based only on who her Mother is.

bristol palin dancing with the stars

Orange fringe flatters no one.

They could think that keeping Bristol in the public eye is good, and I wish America wasn’t a place where this sort of thing could be reasonably important during elections. Reality TV stars are like Gods! But the joke may be on them, if that was their intention.

Instead of Bristol being a normal girl, she then became known for having a child and a scummy babby daddy. Spinning this into Bristol as America’s dancing sweetheart hasn’t worked because she’s not a very good dancer. Now people just believe she’s part of a conspiracy. Of course, more people than ever now know about her and are seeing her humanized every week. Maybe there’s more to this conspiracy than we thought?

This was not the dance of a champion.

All in all, season 11 of DWTS is raising all sorts of political questions. And as entertaining as politics can sometimes be, can’t we let a celebrity ballroom dancing show just be a celebrity ballroom dancing show?

* Or they wanted a free personal trainer/a motivation to get in shape, or in the case of dear Florence Henderson, are genuine fans of the show and want a new life challenge. But mostly it’s for publicity.