The Emmy-nominated emcee of So You Think You Can Dance could teach a thing or two to Carson Daly, Jeff Probst, Heidi Klum, et al
Depending on which TV fan you talk to, Friday Night Lights' in Best Drama nod was not the most overdue Emmy nomination this year. To those who have watched So You Think You Can Dance over the past seven seasons, the most welcome, long-awaited recognition went to Cat Deeley's work as the show's emcee in the Best Reality Host category. The presenter is first and foremost a fan of the show she hosts (to a degree that borders on geeky), clearly engaged with the dancing contestants, genuinely excited for the guest performers and judges each week, and refreshingly professional about her job. In other words, she's the perfect reality show host.
With Project Runway starting up again next week, hosted by the stilted-yet-weirdly charming Heidi Klum, and new X Factor host Steve Jones hoping to help Simon Cowell's new singing competition squash American Idol, here's a look at what the effervescent Deeley does best, a de facto guide to what makes a good reality TV host:
1.) Stand out
American Idol's Ryan Seacrest, Survivor's Jeff Probst, The Amazing Race's Phil Keoghan, Dancing With the Stars' Tom Bergeron, The Voice's Carson Daly: All are variations of the same. Athletically-built white men with $300 haircuts, radio voices, and impeccably tailored dark suits. They all slow down their delivery dramatically and Emphasize. Important. Words while their eyes are forcibly glued to the teleprompter. Cat Deeley, on the other hand, saunters out each week dancing dorkily, a gigantic smile on her face that even fellow bombshell emcees Klum or Padma Lakshmi (Top Chef) only muster roughly once every third season of their shows.