Dancing with the Stars 10 Cast Announcement

At last, the cast of Dancing with the Stars 10 has been revealed. Kudos to those of you who stuck with last night’s Bachelor finale until the last 15 minutes of the show, when Tom Bergeron and Melissa Rycroft finally announced the names of the celebrity cast members. Here’s the list:

Buzz Aldrin & Ashly Delgrosso

Pamela Anderson & Damien 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

Nicole Scherzinger & Derek Hough

Aiden Turner & Edyta Sliwinska

Overall, this is one of the strongest casts DwtS has had in years, at least in terms of name recognition. Aiden Turner is the least recognizable celeb, but he’s a young, hunky English soap actor: red meat for the older, female DwtS demographic.

The two most cynical castings are Kate Gosselin and Jake Pavelka. Bachelor Jake is blatant ABC cross-promotion. Kate is currently one of the most reliable headline generators. From her perspective, DwtS is a much safer bet than trying to launch her own talk show or product line. Plus, it gives producers a chance to see her when she’s not swamped by toddlers.

This is Evan Lysacek’s trophy to lose, right? Olympians usually do well on DwtS — figure skaters and gymnasts in particular — and he won a freaking gold medal in figure skating two weeks ago! I’m not sure about Anna’s freestyle choreography skills, thought, and that’s the routine that ultimately decides the winner. If he was paired with Cheryl or Chelsie, I’d say victory was an absolute lock. But Evan’s got enough relevant experience to make his input valuable.

As for the rest of the field, the three "sexy" couples — Aiden & Edyta, Nicole & Derek and Erin & Maks — could put up a fight. Then there are the wild cards like Jake & Chelsie, Ochocinco & Cheryl and Shannen & Mark who could be surprisingly entertaining.

I’m going to take Kate out of the running because she’s paired with Tony, the pro partner equivalent of mirrorball kryptonite. Buzz is out because he’s 80 (welcome back, Ashly!). Pam’s out because she’s with the new guy, Damien. And Niecy’s out because she’s a comedian, the profession that fares worst on DwtS. Still, I’m glad they included a funny woman this season, and I hope she sticks around a while.

Here’s part one of Kate Gosselin’s appearance on last night’s episode of Jimmy Kimmel Live:

What do you think of the new cast?