Buzz Aldrin, 80, astronaut
Pam Anderson, 42, model/actress
Erin Andrews, 31, ESPN reporter
Shannen Doherty, 38, actress
Kate Gosselin, 34, reality TV mom
Evan Lysacek, 24, Olympic figure skating gold medalist
Niecy Nash, 40, actress/comedienne (Reno 911!)
Chad Ochocinco, 32, NFL star
Jake Pavelka, 32, The Bachelor
Aiden Turner, 33, soap star (Aiden on All My Children)
Nicole Scherzinger, 31, singer (Pussycat Dolls)
The show continues to tick the boxes for type-casting. The Wayne Newton/Cloris Leachman old geezer role is filled by Buzz Aldrin. The ABC soap star du jour is Aiden Turner. Ochocinco is this season's football player, and Evan Lysacek is this season's Olympian. The ringer is Nicole Scherzinger. The Adam Carolla/Jeffrey Ross comedian is Niecy. Kate Gosselin and Jake Pavelka fill the reality roles that Kim Kardashian and Melissa Rycroft once held.
I think this is Evan Lysacek's to lose. Although he's not really known for his artistic ability on the ice, he's very well known for his work ethic, and he's adept at picking up choreography. Not to mention being the current Olympic gold medalist in one of the premiere sports in the just-completed Games.
Another person who should do really, really well on this show is Nicole Scherzinger. She's a Pussycat Doll. Of course she can dance. Plus, she's hot. She will KILL it on the Latin dances. But will she not get votes because she could possibly be the show's ringiest ringer than ever rang? Remains to be seen.
ETA: The pairings were announced on Tuesday and are as follows:
Buzz Aldrin/Ashly (DelGrosso) Costa
Pam Anderson/Damian Whitewood
Erin Andrews/Maksim Chmerkovskiy
Shannen Doherty/Mark Ballas
Kate Gosselin/Tony Dovolani
Evan Lysacek/Anna Trebunskaya
Niecy Nash/Louis Van Amstel
Chad Ochocinco/Cheryl Burke
Jake Pavelka/Chelsie Hightower
Aiden Turner/Edyta Sliwinska
Nicole Scherzinger/Derek Hough
My first thought on these pairings? Damn, this show loves Derek Hough. He ALWAYS gets good dancers. He hasn't had a dud yet, unlike Tony, who, Stacy Keibler and Melissa Rycroft aside, always gets the stiffs and/or unlikeables. Also, Edyta gets the ABC male soap star again. And I hope Damian Whitewood has really long arms.