Adam Taylor/ABC
Sandra Gonzalez
April 24, 2012 AT 09:35 PM EDT

Jaleel White has been tabloid fodder ever since rumors of his rifts with Dancing With the Stars pro and partner Kym Johnson hit high gear. But the former Family Matters star isn’t letting the unfavorable attention get under his skin.

“Tabloids like to have a lot of fun with the show. That’s something I had to learn,” he told EW during a visit to the New York office a few days ago. “They descend on this show like locusts… I’m fine, Kym’s fine. You don’t get through a dance duel like that if you’re not fine, I’ll tell you that.”

And, indeed, White and his partner are back in the “fine” zone after his performance last night, which earned the pair glowing reviews and a score of 29/30. Last week, White was admittedly down. “It’s definitely discouraging to see your scores sometimes. At this point, I try not to focus on my scores too much. The crowd tells me what I need to know,” he said.

But while White now knows what to expect in the ballroom, his new reality show on Syfy is all about the unknown. Total Blackout, a reality competition show that has many international versions, places contestants in a battle against their imaginations. White, who hosts the program, says the “Fear Factor-meets-Punk’d” reality show will translate well to U.S. audiences. “They’ve put even more production value and detail into the American version,” he says. “It’s high comedy.” See a clip of the show (premiering tomorrow night) and more from White below.

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