A word to this year’s Everybody Dance Now contestants – dance like no one’s watching, because they’re not.

It was a battle between reality and scripted television last week when Channel Nine and Ten aired their post Olympics entertainment schedules. Regardless of our nation’s proven ability to observe others, Ten’s heavily spruiked dance competition Everybody Dance Now (EDN), was soundly beaten by Nine’s new Underbelly: Badness series, which drew almost six times EDN’s 304,000 viewer count with 1.78m. Could it be said that we’re done watching sculpted figures twirl, pop n’ drop or do our fluttered hearts just need a break from shirtless beasts? Probably a little bit of both.

An unmitigated ratings disaster already, EDN’s problems look likely to bury any hope of a second season (or even a first one) as viewers suffer through a variety of shortcomings including pacing and editing issues, a complete lack of personal narrative among the contestants, a confusing structure, awkward interactions between talent and tacky production values. Add human cardboard cutout Sarah Murdoch, she who once made up 1/3 of Destiny’s Child, now solo artist, Kelly Rowland, and almost-Usher, Jason Durulo, and the prognosis looks terminal.

Whatever the reason for its plummet, EDN will continue to share Sunday evenings with Nine’s Big Brother – which nabbed 1.61m viewers – and the aforementioned Underbelly series. Good luck with that!

Words by Jacqui Lennon