Remember “Don’t Trust the B—- in Apartment 23”? The short-lived ABC sitcom that ran from two seasons on which the “Dawson’s Creek” alum played a vain, narcissistic version of himself? Yeah, well, that James Van Der Beek was on “Dancing.” In the “Apartment 23” Season 1 finale, which aired in May 2012, James is cast on “Dancing” and develops a heated rivalry with Dean Cain after he learns that the former Superman has a larger dressing room.
The storyline carried over into Season 2, and Karina Smirnoff, who at the time had just won Season 13 of “Dancing” with J.R. Martinez, guest-starred as Dean’s partner. James wasn’t partnered with a real “Dancing” pro on the show, but rather the fictional Angie Beckencort (Missi Pyle), who was not great, but James manages to boot her for a better partner, Valentina (Shanti Lowry). James is actually a good dancer — so good that Dean and Karina fear him — but his debut performance did not go as planned. Hoping to calm him down after he freaks out about Chloe (Krysten Ritter) subletting his NYC apartment, June’s (Dreama Walker) mom Connie (Eve Gordon) accidentally drugs him with some Chinese herbal tea. And, sadly, his performance is an unmitigated disaster (watch above).
Let’s hope this doesn’t happen to the real Beek on the real “Dancing.”
Back then, Van Der Beek told TV Guide that he had been offered to do “Dancing” “a couple times” but had always turned it down. “I always thought it would be kind of fun, but would never do it, but that doesn’t mean the ‘Apartment 23’ me can’t do it!” he said. “I pitched the storyline to [‘Apartment 23’ executive producer] Nahnatchka Khan where I would go on ‘Dancing with the Stars.’ There’s a big joke that I planned out and the only way for it to be funny is if I was a phenomenal dancer.”
This is what you call the seven-year itch.
Van Derk Beek joins a cast that includes Christie Brinkley, Ray Lewis and Sean Spicer. The pro partnerships won’t be announced until the premiere.
Season 28 of “Dancing with the Stars” premieres Monday, Sept. 16 at 8/7c on ABC.