Up until five days before DWTS premiered, he was in Seaside Heights, New Jersey, taping the third season of Jersey Shore, the MTV reality show that made him and his laser-chiseled abdominal muscles—which, in a masterstroke of personal-brand integration, are also called “the Situation”—sort of famous. But the Situation would not be the Situation today if he were willing to settle for being “sort of” anything. Reality got him this far, but DWTS is his chance to level up. To reach the kind of people who watch Desperate Housewives. People who know him, if they know him at all, know him as some kind of vague mediascape pest, lurking Tila Tequila-like on the fringe of their awareness. People who would ordinarily be unwilling to have foisted upon them as a household name the guy from a reality show about self-proclaimed “guidos” and “guidettes” whose principal interests include drinking, tanning, sport-fucking, ultratrashy violence, and house music. In other words, the Situation wants to introduce himself to your mom, and maybe your grandmother, too. And he wants them to see him as a good guy—sweet and humble, and grateful for the opportunities he’s been presented, and totally dedicated to the job of being a famous person.
If you’re going to stand up for the mosque Friday night, you don’t walk away from it Saturday morning.