Children should not have jobs, but lucky for us, Jojo Siwa’s mom Jessalynn Siwa yanked her little indie rocker out of Omaha and shoved her then nine-year-old daughter into the fraudulent embrace of Abby Lee Miller on the Dance Moms spin-off Abby’s Ultimate Dance Competition. Since then, Jojo’s led Ted Talks, endured an asbestos-laden eyeshadow for children scandal, revolutionized fashion for the 6-12 set, and pivoted her sound to hyperpop.
But mostly, there has been dancing. She’s made millions of dollars predicated on the strength of her dancing. In her Paramount+ original film The J Team, she plays a heightened version of herself, a dancer. She’s so dedicated to the craft that she built a stage in her own backyard when the pandemic canceled her D.R.E.A.M. tour, and she then documented it obsessively on her YouTube channel, which boasts 12.3 million subscribers. She is probably one of the most famous dancers alive, activist Julianne Hough aside.
So obviously, yes, she is doing a remarkable job on the program, particularly in this 1 minute clip of her doing the cha-cha to Lady Gaga and Ariana Grande’s “Rain on Me” with her partner Jenna Johnson.
Of course it’s good, because she is a FAMOUS DANCER. Get it through my thick skull, then, why Jojo is allowed to be on Dancing with the Stars, a program that highlights the humiliating efforts of celebrities not known for their body work. Every season the narrative is such: a total nobody like Bindi Irwin or long-lost sitcom star like Alfonso Ribeiro proves they’re worthy of being watched weekly by the entire assisted living facility population in America via hard work, a convoluted voting system, and the homicidal fury of a boxy Ukrainian mentor.
Jojo is at the peak of her career. Dancing with the Stars needs her a lot more than she needs them (though presumably the paycheck is solid). But mostly, it isn’t fair. Fellow cast member Olivia Jade shouldn’t be humiliated like this, especially after her last athletic pursuit was cut so short. Let Brian Austin Green have a character arc! We know Melora Hardin can sing, but she also wants to learn to dance. Even with an Olympic gymnast and a Spice Girl on deck, Jojo makes everyone else look like chumps.
It pains me to say this, but I’m using my massive platform for good: we need to vote Jojo Siwa off.