Welcome one, welcome all to another Strictly Saturdays post. I don’t want to be the one who says this all the time, but, can you believe how fast this series is already going? Last week we said a very sad goodbye to some of my favourites Katie Piper and Gorka Marquez, they were the third pair to say goodbye to Strictly this year! I’m really excited about tonight’s show, I have done a lot of things to get ready for my upcoming holiday today and I have completely sorted a room in the house and begun tidying and cleaning my room ready for the trip, so I am looking forward to relaxing with some good dancing. I don’t want to have criticise everyone last week, but it was a little pedestrian for me, no-one shone and no-one nose-dived and it was a week that passed me by.
This week is a little different from normal because there is no Bruno Tonioli. I’m not quite sure where Bruno has swanned off to, and swanning off is most definitely the phrase that suits him, but I think I am OK with this. As much as I like Bruno and think he gives strong advice under the pervy comments, it’s nice to have a break from his extravagance. Replacing him for one week only is Fresh Prince of Bel Air star and Dancing With The Stars Winner Alfonso Ribeiro, y’know, that one with the famous dance, so it will make the show a bit more interesting.
We also have a new dance category, oooooooooooo! It’s called ‘Couple’s Choice’, which funnily enough means the couples who have been assigned said category get to choose from three different dance styles, all of which are completely new to Strictly! The categories are Commercial/Street – this encompasses all type of commercial, hip hop, street, and music video dancing (basically lots of gyrating, hip thrusts, lifts and tricks, flips and spins, where you can wear jogging bottoms and trainers), Contemporary – this encompasses lyrical, expressive, and balletic style movements (basically slowly weird movements not in time to the music with lots of lifts and no-one wears shoes), and Theatre/Jazz – this incorporates modern, jazz, and musical theatre performances (lots of jazz hands, side by side numbers, canes and hats, and coats with tails). I’m not sure what I think of it, but we’ll see two couples perform tonight!
I have to say the boys are looking good tonight, it took me a little bit of time to notice that we aren’t supposed to look at them and actually look at the ladies. I do quite like the white jumpsuit, it’s odd to see her in a symmetric outfit, but love Claudia’s dress. It’s so Christmas party chic, and it look amazing. And Shirley has carried that on, but wow that is one high slit. I love Darcey’s green number and I am feeling Alfonso’s Burgundy suit. It’s going to be a good night, I can feel it, let’s go!
Dr. Ranj Singh and Janette Manrara American Smooth to Wouldn’t It Be Nice (watch here)
I really like these two but I think the gulf in quality is going to show soon because he isn’t quite as good as some of the others now. That said, this is such a happy song and these two are just joy personified so it should be good. I hope they do lifts and that it’s sweet and cute!
It was definitely sweet and they were definitely having fun, but there was also definitely something not right about it. It didn’t look spot on in hold and that spinny lift looked a bit out of control, but they were so smiley and happy.
Craig: 5 Darcey: 6 Shirley: 7 Alfonso: 7 Total: 25
Lauren Steadman and AJ Pritchard ‘Couple’s Choice’ Contemporary to Runnin’ (watch here)
And so we have the first couple’s choice in Strictly and they’re doing a Contemporary. I’m not sure what I think about this, I mean I think it will suit her athleticism and they can express without her needing two arms, but I hate this style of dance. It’s so slow and weird and no-one wears shoes. Seriously, AJ, that’s a bit much of you there. Close your shirt!
I got the concept, but if they hadn’t explained it before, I’m not sure I would have got it. She had the core strength and control for it, but it felt a little bit blocky at points and didn’t flow as much as I feel like it should have been. I don’t know how to quite explain it other than to use Emma’s words that it still felt acted. Contemporary is supposed to flow from emotion and instead of feeling the emotion, she acted
Craig: 4 Darcey: 6 Shirley: 7 Alfonso: 7 Total: 24
Graeme Swann and Oti Mabuse Tango to Roxanne (watch here)
This is an epic dance, and I love this song, and I have the highest hopes that this is going to be spectacular. They’ve gone a little heavy with the eye make up and the fake tan for him! Oh those cuddles and Oti moments in his house, him dancing with his kids, so cute. Love how savage his wife is!!
Bravo, guys, that was really good, I thought I was going to lose it at the beginning, but wow. There some really cool intricate moves and they looked really good, and the movements were really good. It was jam packed, had the attack necessary, staccato, and a bit of Paso too. Smoothy!
Craig: 6 Darcey: 7 Shirley: 8 Alfonso: 8 Total: 29
Ashley Roberts and Pasha Kovalev Rumba to The Way You Look Tonight (watch here)
As much as she is an amazing dancer and they are able to do so much and really add in quality content, nothing makes this style of dance appeal to me so I am worried because this could be amazing and I am still probably not going to like it that much.
I mean I am going to eat my words a teeny tiny bit, because I didn’t mind that so bravo. It was a lot quicker and had so much more content than I usually expect. I think the song was a bit more powerful and it wasn’t trying to be overly bedroom level sexy. I won’t rewatch it, but it was quite good, especially for a rumba.
Craig: 9 Darcey: 9 Shirley: 9 Alfonso: 9 Total: 36
Seann Walsh and Katya Jones Quickstep to Lightning Bolt (watch here)
I really hope we have seen the back of the whole bullshit campaign against these two now. I have been looking forward to them doing a quickstep for a couple of weeks now, ever since he became quite good, so I hope this is awesome. OMG bonus Oti too, we’re blessed. I love her dress and look, she is amazing.
I thought that was really quite good, I liked the look and they seemed like they enjoyed it. It was quite skippy and jumpy, but it was endearing and they were both into it and enjoying it. You could tell they really liked it. They really moved, like, really moved, and bounced a bit.
Craig: 5 Darcey: 6 Shirley: 6 Alfonso: 7 Total: 24
Stacey Dooley and Kevin Clifton Samba to Tequila (watch here)
She was so good and looked amazing last week. I’m starting to really like these as a pair, they gel really well and seem to really bring out the best in each other. She’s got a great ability to take on any dance so far! I feel like we can see a lot a lot of her tonight though, wow!
I don’t usually love sambas but I loved that. I was so happy and fun and she was in it and looking sensational. I think that was really amazing and he really celebrated her like he does. It was amazing, she had the bounce and the feel, and wow, can’t get over how much she looked like she loved it. The fall on TE-QUI-LA, she did not hold back.
Craig: 8 Darcey: 7 Shirley: 9 Alfonso: 9 Total: 33
Joe Sugg and Dianne Buswell Waltz to Rainbow Connection (watch here)
I like how no-one is one their back about getting close and what not. I love these two, I really do. I’ve given in trying not to like them or warm to them, I now watch some of his vlogs, they’ve been a solid and surprising pair and I really like watching them dance. They’re properly entertaining. Oh they’ve ruined it, I can’t stand Zoella, sorry Joe, I was just forgetting about you and then BOOM.
That was really light and emotional, and I really felt it. I think Craig is wrong, I thought he looked really wistful and blissful no expressionless. There was something a bit off at one point but I really felt it and he did well, he’s leading well. He shows something new every week, the vulnerability and the quality, liked it. All the favourites, all the pressure.
Craig: 6 Darcey: 7 Shirley: 8 Alfonso: 8 Total: 29
Vick Hope and Graziano Di Prima Cha Cha to More Than Friends (watch here)
These two look incredible, and even though she isn’t as natural at dancing as I thought she would be, I definitely think she is moving and grooving now! She seems like she is loving it. BONUS DOGGO.
She’s clearly a ballroom girl, her Latin just doesn’t look natural. It was lacking a lot of hip movement, but she made up for that with her face. She just leads with her legs and not her hips, and even thought I think she loves the music and feel, it doesn’t look quite right. I feel like it did lack a bit of a cha cha feel, it didn’t actually feel like it had that much cha cha in it.
Craig: 4 Darcey: 6 Shirley: 4 Alfonso: 6 Total: 20
Kate Silverton and Aljaz Skorjanec Viennese Waltz to Finally Mine (watch here)
Aljaz (he’s an Uncle) and Kate are just so happy all the time. He really gets her and I think he really knows how to make her enjoy it which is so amazing to see. Oh that picture, and that dress.
I loved that little cheer at the end, because that was really meaningful and beautiful. The spins were amazing and the fleckerl was definitely there and I really really liked it. There was a really genuine smile and flow, and the frame was really good, her frame is amazing. Alfonso is right, it was elegant and the connection was amazing.
Craig: 6 Darcey: 6 Shirley: 6 Alfonso: 8 Total: 26
Danny John Jules and Amy Dowden Jive to Flip, Flop and Fly (watch here)
These two are just floating a long safely and getting better and better and yeah, they’re so good. I really like them, I like how they work and I like that they do a really good technical dance every time. I feel like the intricate movements and the flicks are going to really suit his style. I love Amy’s logic, dance on a plane means you can dance on a floor, they’re nuts. Amy is so Welsh.
I thought that was really good. It was full of energy and the actions were good. The flicks were good and there was great retraction, it was seriously quick, but somehow it was static, it barely moved around the floor which was odd. It did have a great 50’s feel too. For me, it was just really good though, not extraordinary.
Craig: 9 Darcey: 10 Shirley: 9 Alfonso: 9 Total: 37
Faye Tozer-Smith and Giovanni Pernice Foxtrot to Just The Way You Are (watch here)
I think this really could be exceptional because I like this song and it can have a lot of feeling. They’re so tall and pretty looking, and they look amazing , she is really talented and they really go for technique, it could be special. Why did they close the bridge for them, I’m confused?!
Why did they start and stop dancing like 5 seconds into the dance and 5 seconds from the end. I didn’t love the middle bit in the middle, and I thought she looked a bit like a tree in the wind at the beginning. It wasn’t their best for me.
Craig: 8 Darcey: 9 Shirley: 8 Alfonso: 8 Total: 33
Charles Venn and Karen Clifton ‘Couples Choice’ Commercial/Street to Get Up Off That Thing (watch here)
I really don’t like these two and can’t same I’m disappointed by his repeated dance off appearances. Even this song isn’t going to make me like him, because no belting tune will hide the fact he has picked Commercial/Street dancing, which I also really can’t stand with a similar passion as contemporary. Those suits are a bit much, and his face, I feel mean but I just don’t like his face. That little girl was my hero.
That was definitely the most I have got him, he had the feel and swagger for that. It fit well with the music and they were very in sync. The whole thing wasn’t enough to make me like him but I definitely didn’t like him as much as I usually do.
I know this is harsh, but I can’t help but wonder how genuine it is. Like I know it probably is, but I feel like he’s brought Grenfell and his father into it to drive emotion, which maybe he needs, but also makes him more human and make people vote for him. I’m sure it’s from the best place and for the best reasons, but I am doubting it and that is the reason I don’t think I like him.
Craig: 9 Darcey: 9 Shirley: 9 Alfonso: 9 Total: 36
1. Danny and Amy = 37
2= Ashley and Pasha = 36
2= Charles and Karen = 36
4= Stacey and Kevin = 33
4= Faye and Giovanni = 33
6= Graeme and Oti = 29
6= Joe and Dianne = 29
8. Kate and Aljaz = 26
9. Dr. Ranj and Janette = 25
10= Seann and Katya = 24
10= Lauren and AJ = 24
12. Vick and Graziano = 20
Well, well, this week really stood up to the plate and was pretty darn awesome don’t you think? There was some stellar performances, and only one poorish dance, and overall it was just really good. Alfonso added some extra American schabang and if I am honest, I think I prefer having him around to Bruno! Claudia’s upstairs area seems to be having a great time tonight as well, they seemed to be living everything really well and were so into it. They were all laughing and joking and it made me want to be up there with them. I ended up voting 3 times for Katya and Seann, I know they’re not popular but I like them and I have decided that I need them to stay until at least Halloween because I think they would do a great spooky dance, don’t you? Anyway, that’s all for tonight folks, so until tomorrow…
Well it took until the judges corner bit thingy where they analyse the dancing to finally get some Carlton moves but yey, I am now happy. Yes, the show as a whole though! The pro routine was a little better this week, no ridiculous music video nonsense, and even though I don’t like Paloma Faith that much, I liked the dance to her song (well, I liked the trousers Johannes wore!) I was pretty gutted that Seann was in the dance off, but he luckily came up against Vick and Graziano and they were quite poor, so they’re through to another week, phew! Once again, bottom of the leaderboard bites the dust. I like it, it seems fairer this way.