I’m sorry. There, I’ve said it. I’m sorry this post is quite so late, but surely it’s better to post something rather than nothing? I have absolutely no excuse other than I was tired and I am in a blogging slump and struggling at the moment with it all! Anyway, the show, I feel like we suddenly have no people at all! Last week’s Blackpool Spectacular saw us say goodbye to Kate and Aljaz, and even though I was gutted, I was pleased that we didn’t lose anyone that I really liked.
Ahead of next week’s quarter finals, the couples will be gracing the dance floor an extra time this week. They are all doing a dance as normal, then they’re all joining each other on the dance floor for a Lindyhopathon (what on Earth could possibly go wrong?). I’m hoping it makes things interesting, but I have a feeling it will just highlight the gulf in talent even more than when they dance separately. I’m hoping to be proven wrong!
This week, the ladies seem to have dressed in matchy matchy in black numbers, an unusually sleeved jumpsuit number for Tess that I don’t mind but don’t love, and Claudia’s pretty (if booby) dress. I love Darcey’s dress too, it’s bright and red and jazzy, and I love how bloody extra Shirley has decided to be. Like, that’s such a huge big dress, and it’s stunning and all, but it’s going to be hidden under a judging table all evening which is such a waste.
Graeme Swann and Oti Mabuse Quickstep to ‘Sing, Sing, Sing’ (watch here)
I bloody love a good quickstep and I really like Oti’s choreography so I have high hopes for this. I think this really could be his dance. He has the athlete’s background that often helps with the training and fast steps involved, and he is tall with a good frame. I’m excited for this, and once again, can we stop to appreciate how beautiful Oti is?
Oh, oh dear. That stumble, the mistake, that was just not a very good dance. I’m really disappointed because I think it would have been alright had the falls not happened.
Craig: 6 Darcey: 6 Shirley: 6 Bruno: 6 Total: 24
Ashley Roberts and Pasha Kovalev Samba to ‘Hot, Hot, Hot’ (watch here)
I have a huge problem with this song choice because one of my favourite dances ever (Mark Ramprakash’s microphone disaster with Karen years ago) and so I am concerned this will just ruin it, or be a disappointment. That said, she should be on a high after last week’s 40 points and her dancing background should mean she is good at this dance.
I think that was OK, but it didn’t set anything on fire and I really didn’t live the weird feather fans at the beginning. I actually would go as far as saying that it was a little bit disappointing, but that could just be because it was a samba and I don’t like sambas. It seems to have split the judges too!
Craig: 8 Darcey: 9 Shirley: 9 Bruno: 10 Total: 36
Faye Tozer Smith and Giovanni Pernice Waltz to ‘See the Day’ (watch here)
I don’t think I have ever heard of anyone having to change a dance on medical grounds. He must have really hurt himself and not just tweaked his back! I am kind of excited for their waltz though, I think this will be super elegant!
OH MG GOSH I love that dance. The red dress, the drama, the elegance. That was stunning and I adored it. Dem pivots. That is one of my favourite moves in dance and it looked absolutely stunning when they did it, it drove across the floor and was incredible! I may have to rewatch that a few times.
Craig: 9 Darcey: 10 Shirley: 10 Bruno: 10 Total: 39
Joe Sugg and Dianne Buswell ‘Couple’s Choice’ Street and Commercial to ‘Jump Around’ (watch here)
I really don’t know what I am expecting from this. They were so great last week and this is such a different type and not one that I feel would come naturally too him. I don’t know how I feel about this. These have become one of my favourite couples now, I’m not even lowkey supporting him, it’s just full on!
That was, d’you know what, that was good. I liked it. It was ambitious, and full of tricks and props, and it was like a throwback to old school hip hop and for some reason worked. It was properly good, but it was a bit whether it’s to your tastes. This is going to split the judges for sure!
Craig: 7 Darcey: 8 Shirley: 10 Bruno: 10 Total: 35
Charles Venn and Karen Clifton Tango to ‘Eleanor Rigby’ (watch here)
Oh I just don’t like these two and they really irritated me last week with their reactions to their 10’s. I have a feeling that this is going to be disappointing, I think he’ll find it hard and when he finds it hard, he tends to give it less beans.
I didn’t like that. I hated the version of the song. Karen was being so over the top it’s not true. The frame looked weird and it just didn’t look right at all. His Tango face was like a creepy pout too. No thanks.
Craig: 6 Darcey: 8 Shirley: 8 Bruno: 8 Total: 30
Lauren Steadman and AJ Pritchard Salsa to ‘Familiar’ (watch here)
I know this is harsh, but at this point I am wondering if the reason she is still in this competition is because she only had one arm. I say that as someone who couldn’t give a shit whether you have a disability and as someone who believes she is good when she wants to be (that waltz anyone?) but I think this going to be poor and yeah.
Right, that wasn’t good and let’s not pretend that it was acceptable for this stage in the competition. I have this feeling she won’t go as well, but she deserves to be in the dance off at least.
Craig: 5 Darcey: 6 Shirley: 6 Bruno: 6 Total: 23
Stacey Dooley and Kevin Clifton Paso Doble to ‘Malagueña’ (watch here)
I cannot lie to you, this is the dance I have been looking forward to all night. Kevin choreographs a mean Paso and I think she will embrace this dance style. I think this will be amazing, they look awesome.
Wow that was dramatic and dynamic, she had the fierceness with the flamenco femininity and Kevin was back to his best show off his partner self. It was an epic end to the normal dance portion of the show.
Craig: 9 Darcey: 10 Shirley: 10 Bruno: 10 Total: 39
OK, strap in and hold on tight because this is about to get hectic. The Lindy hop is a lively dance that is based in jazz, tap, and Charleston, and the dancers are allowed to throw in lifts which means you know that this is going to be energetic and big. I don’t know about you, but I’m suddenly looking at that Strictly dance floor and thinking that it’s not big enough for 14 lindyhopathoning dancers.
If you fancy checking it out, click here.
That was SHAMBOLIC. Someone is going to be on the wrong end of a Shirley bollocking later today and I do not envy that person in the slightest. I mean, what the hell happened? They were all dancing merrily along and things were happening and no-one crashed and it went a lot more hunky dory than I expected and then BOOM, Shirley screwed up the scoring repeatedly because she couldn’t read her own handwriting and the tablet broke and then confusion rained down on everyone. I think that may well be the first and last lindyhopathon we ever see. It made next to no difference to the scoring as well.
1. Faye and Giovanni – 39 + 6 = 45
2= Stacey and Kevin – 39 + 4 = 43
2= Ashley and Pasha – 36 + 7 = 43
4. Joe and Dianne – 35 + 5 = 40
5. Charles and Karen – 30 + 3 = 33
6. Graeme and Oti – 24 + 2 = 26
7. Lauren and AJ – 23 + 1 = 24
I have to say that I didn’t rate this week’s show that highly and I am not quite sure why. I think the lindyhopathon fell faster than a damp squib, and the dances were good but not spectacular (the Paso aside). I am suddenly aware of how few dancers are left in the show and I am getting to that point where I am fed up when the people at the bottom don’t go because the gulf between the top and the bottom is getting ridiculously big at this point.
I think I have also realised that now is the time that I am happy for Lauren to go. I don’t think she will, I think the dance off will be between Charles and Graeme and that we’ll sadly see the back of Graeme and Oti, but I’m ready for Lauren to go. I think she’ll struggle in two dance weeks and I don’t particularly find her entertaining to watch.
I don’t usually get the chance to post all about the results when I do this post on a Saturday so this is about the only benefit of being super late. I want to start by saying that I really like that Arlene Philips has put her beef with the BBC behind her to produce a brilliant opening number. Not only does it showcase spectacular professional dancers from the show and elsewhere, but it showcases the incredible talent of some of the country’s best disabled dancers. They were stunning and spectacular and they mixed the dance troupe and the Strictly pros really well. Not only that, they nonchalantly had Graziano dancing with another man and I think Luba dancing with another woman, and this is really refreshing to see as it was beautifully put together.
I usually say you can watch it here, but please, take the time to watch the 3 minute video linked because it was something else!
Sadly, the dance off went the way it was feared to and Graeme left. That wasn’t the shock of the night though, which came when Ashley and Pasha were announced as the couple they were dancing against. It’s probably the most straight forward dance off I’ve ever seen to vote, but even so, a shock to see them and a formality for those who went.
I hope to see you all next week when we hit Quarter Finals and Musicals week. It’s going to be one hell of a show, see you there…