Okay, there's the face and the smile and the laugh and the hair and the sick ice dancer thighs -- have you noticed those things when he hoists a partner into the air? Dude.
What planet is this kid from?
Wherever it is, the other Dancing with the Stars contestants who watched Olympic gold medalist Charlie White steal the very first show of this season must be hoping he'll go back there real soon. And the grumbling about whether he had some kind of advantage or not can just stop right now. DWTS has featured Donny Osmond and a whole slew of performers who were dancing almost before they could walk. But very few of them could do what White did on his first night out.
What White has is an innate musicality and well-trained core that raised his debut dance to the So You Think You Can Dance level. And he's a great actor, too -- he had us from "The Gaze," when he ran those yearning eyes along the length of partner Sharna Burgess' arm. He snapped into character instantly, and remained there throughout.
There will be lots of grousing about all the lifts and twirls of course. DWTS would have been foolish not to feature them -- that's what people tuned in for. Ratings matter. And they knew exactly what they were doing when they snapped up White and Davis so soon after their Olympic triumph.
But if you were really watching, you might've noticed that little stretch of actual dancing that said all we needed to know. White is a dancer. It's not just the perfect form, it's the follow through -- every move was precise, complete, confident. He's not just a perfect partner, he could easily solo and be just as strong.
One Web columnist has already declared his debut dance the best, ever -- nothing new to White. His gold medal performances earned the highest scores in the history of ice dancing, too. The first gold, ever, for an American couple.
I'm not a DWTS fan, so I can't make an informed comparison. I do know that somewhere in the midst of that first performance, White reminded me of something Baryshnikov once said about Fred Astaire:
"We just dance. He... is doing something else," Baryshnikov explained.
White's no Baryshnikov -- he's not up there with Astaire yet, either. But he performed like a pro right out of the gate -- those betting that he'll stumble when it comes time to tango or fox trot should think twice before betting against him.
The dude can dance. And it's going to be a whole lot of fun watching him do it.