'Cheer Perfection' on TLC review: It's ordinary

Coach Alisha Dunlap trains young cheer leaders in

Coach Alisha Dunlap trains young cheer leaders in TLC's 'Cheer Perfection.' (Credit: TLC)

SHOW "Cheer Perfection"

WHEN | WHERE Wednesday night at 10 on TLC

WHAT IT'S ABOUT In the town of Sherwood, Ark., there's an elite cheerleading team called "Youth Silver," composed of young girls working hard to get an invite to a big national tournament. But enough about the girls -- what about the commandant who leads them through their daily routines en route to glory?


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She is Alisha Dunlap, who takes pride in perfection and is happy to bark at the kid who fails to achieve it.

And what about the cheerleader moms? You'll get to know them very well, assuming you stick around for the eight episodes of this spinoff from a summer special. They are Bobbie and Ann and Michelle and Andrea and Mandy. They have a vested interest in their child's success -- primarily their own self-esteem.

MY SAY Ever since HBO's 1993 film "The Positively True Adventures of the Alleged Texas Cheerleader-Murdering Mom," cheerleader moms have gotten a very bad rap, whether they're alleged murderers or not. List of presumed attributes: backbiting, pathologically ambitious, prone to disparaging children not their own . . . (and then there's the really bad stuff).

Why is this so? Who knows, and if you really stop to think about it, who cares -- other than TLC, which hopes it has found in this clattering catty courtside claque the perfect counterpart to mothers on hits such as "Toddlers & Tiaras" and "Here Comes Honey Boo Boo." ("Cheer Perfection," by the way, shares parentage with both of those shows.) But what those two have in abundance, this one does not -- notably a freak show aspect that makes viewers rub their eyes in disbelief while proudly declaiming that they would never do that to their own kid.

"Cheer Perfection" is numbing in its ordinariness -- dull, trivial and never, ever outrageous. One kid's mom doesn't want another mom's kid on the squad? How dare she! Zzzzz.

BOTTOM LINE The positively true adventures of Arkansas cheerleader moms who endlessly titter among themselves about the talents of their offspring while putting viewers to sleep.

GRADE C-

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