Strictly Come Dancing 10 – Launch Show Summary

Oh it feels good to be back. In the country that is – I’ve been on holiday in Florence for the last week. There was a street called Piazza Dell’Olio. How (only) I laughed. Also Strictly Come Dancing 10 started yesterday with the now requisite Launch Show. It was less exciting but still contained scenes of Darcey Bussell, having been hyped up for the last month as Class Darcey Who Knows About Dancing, being flung around in the air flashing her minge to all and sundry. Apparently they had to do three retakes, because the nation will never be ready for the sight of an airbourne pudenda on Strictly unless you count Ann Widdecombe’s tango. So I’m blogging that as well.

Speaking of Darcey, she fits into the new judging panel about as well as could be expected, which is to say like one of those creepy little girl ghosts in a Japanese horror film who occasionally come into focus in the back of shot, in a mirror or something. Her general lack of impact may be because all three veteran judges are on fine form, which is to say that Bruno iss going “YEAH, SEXY LADIES WITH THEIR SEXY LADY LEGS AND BOOBS AND STUFF” every five seconds, Craig is still testing the point of self-parody where his act becomes unfunny, and Len is fully ensconced in his role of “Uncle Albert reading out Sun headlines”. Such experimental theatre is Len these days. Also Bruce is off-piste within 10 minutes and Tess is trying to be funny, but MORE so, like your mum’s fifth reading of a Christmas cracker joke she doesn’t get, hoping the gurning and eye-flicking will suddenly make things click in her head.

Mika does a song. Joy.

This year’s celeb line-up (who Len claims to recognise in their entirity HA HA HA pull the other one Len it’s Tracy Beaker and someone stood at the back of the James Bond movies) is gradually revealed over the course of the show to be :

Denise Van Outen: who is a dirty ringer because she played Roxie in Chicago (just like Michelle Williams!) and went to Sylvia Young (just like Christopher Parker!). She’s partnered with James Jordan so yes, it is the third series in a row where James Jordan is going to be there til the end, so adjust your excitement-meters thusly.
Tracy Beaker: who is a midget and gets groped by Bruce worst out of everyone. She is partnered with Vincent, because she is a midget, and so is he, and I hope for Movie Week they dance to something by The Lollipop Guild.
Kimberly Walsh: the least famous and least popular member of Girls Aloud who is serving as our official back-up RINGER BITCH in case Denise turns out to be likable. She is partnered with Pasha whose hair has been replaced by larded up back-combed cheesestrings. I was sad about Katya leaving too Pasha, but at least I washed.
Victoria Pendleton: whose presence I have built up so much in my head that I actually yelled “YAY! PENDLEBITCH!” when her VT cued up and she is partnered with Brenda and they better be the ALL-CONQUERING VILLAIN TEAM that I want and need them to be so I can stop hyperventilating
Jerry Hall: who appears to be Nancy Dell’Olio with a sense of humour about herself and really who could imagine a more pointless thing than that? She makes sex jokes and is partnered with one, as she is this year’s contestant doomed to be overshadowed by Anton spending all his time needling Tess and none of it choreographing dances.
Lisa Riley: because it is 1996, apparently. She is partnered with Robin, because one Anton du Beke on this show just wasn’t enough.
Aching unquenchable void of neediness Fern Britton who I will hopefully learn to love(/be less terrified of) and who is partnered with Artem, which is pretty much the best start you can get on that score.

Nicky Westlife: who is deathly boring and not even in a fun way like Harry “all my interviews end up being about knitwear” Judd. He is paired with new pro Karen Hauer, who is to Nicole Scherzinger what Danielle Brown is to Mel B and doesn’t even get her own intro dance. I still can’t over the new pro being someone who finished TWELFTH on So You Think You Can Dance. TWELFTH.
Louis Smith: who is an Olympic gymnast and the second most exciting cast-member after PENDLEBITCH. Seriously, all you people who claim there shouldn’t be too many Olympians in the cast due to “needing variety”, do you really think Lisa Riley and the Showbiz Editor of Daybreak are superior opitions? Anyway, Louis is partnered with Flavia and they are awkward and shy hesitant around one another because that’s just how Flavia rolls. She’ll have him in the sex-harness by week 5 just you wait.
Richard Arnold who is said Showbiz Editor of Daybreak and is probably the least-cared about member of the cast overall, but I have higher hopes. Because he is partnered with Erin who has never let a gay down yet, and I include Austin in that, because Erin clearly thought he was whether he actually liked cock or not.
Johnny Ball: the oldest contestant ever, which makes me sad, although not as sad as Aliona. Hopefully her not caring will result in her choreography being more insane, not less so. JOHNNY BALL AS A SEXY VAMPIRE PLEASE. GET SEXY RIGHT NOW (*MEOW*)
Sid Owen: who is here to be the target of “RICKAY!” jokes and nothing else. Nice hipster glasses though. He’s partnered with Ola, who has been scraping points out of the pointless for seven series now.
Colin Salmon: who is an actor who exists so that the tabloids can scare racists by pretending he’s about to be James Bond. My thoughts are, as always with the non-famous celebrities, that hopefully this means he’s a secret ringer but based on the fact that he’s been paired with Kristina, who would struggle to see over the nail of his big toe whilst dancing with him, I’m guessing no. And also based on the fact of his dancing.
Michael Vaughan: who I had a serious crush on when I was younger which I don’t get at all in retrospect. People say he’ll get far because he’s a cricketer, ignoring the fact that all the other cricketers on this show have either had massive personalities or have been incredibly magnetic charismatic forces of sexual accountancy, and Michael Vaughan is neither. He has Natalie who makes the best Surprised Face of the episode, and it’s still not great.

A full recap will be up this week some time, hopefully. Also the theme tune has lyrics now. I’m sure the nation will be singing along with them every week, and not just bellowing “DAH DAH DAH DAH DAH DAH DAHHHHHHH!” like we always did before.


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69 thoughts on “Strictly Come Dancing 10 – Launch Show Summary

  1. phollie

    AHHH welcome back Monkseal (i’ve been refreshing this page for hours)! says a lot when i look forward more to your recaps than to the show its self.
    by the way-
    ‘ the other cricketers on this show have either had massive personalities or have been incredibly magnetic charismatic forces of sexual accountancy,’ err which one was Darren Gough?

    BTW absoulutely in love with Karen

    Reply
  2. Left Feet

    Hi
    For what it was i thought the launch show was pretty good, I know that you don’t like Darcey much but her dance with Ian Waite I thought was a highlight. Still concerned not with her dance knowledge but the balance of the panel. Craig and Len seem more happy but Bruno? I read a bit of his book about Strictly and he said that last year was the best for him and that he bounced off Alesha (not referenced once ha ha!) but depsite during the usual Bruno stuff he can’t really grop Len can he?
    Other highlights James Jordan slamming a door in Craigs face, Tess’s throwaway introduction of Karen Hauer and the celebs yes I do think that Len was streching the truth a little because I had not heard of Tracey Beaker or Richard Arnold I do know who Colin (totally shafted) Salmon is and he is the only member of the cast I trying to work out why he hell he is doing the show.
    Bruce should really call it quits after this year though.

    Reply
    1. monkseal Post author

      Bruno might not be able to grope Len, but he can still use “demonstrating proper leg extensions” to stick his crotch directly in his face. He did seem a little…subdued in the Launch Show, but it seems like a strong female cast this year, and we all know how Bruno likes those. Hopefully he’ll perk up.

      Reply
  3. Poppy

    I had no idea who Colin Salmon is so I Googled him (I didn’t know who Richard Arnold was either, but couldn’t even remember his name so couldn’t Google him), and was interested to see on Wikipedia that his mother was called Sylvia Brudenell Salmon. Does that make him some sort of cousin of Bo Bruce? I hope she’s going to be in the audience to support him. Maybe she’ll pop up in the training room with a cake and balloons one day.

    I also want to put here my pet theory, which is this: the only reason Denise Van Outen is in the show is so that when she becomes a judge next year at least she’ll have a little knowledge of Ballroom and Latin, and will be able say “I was there, I did that, I know how you feel…” etc. etc.

    Reply
    1. Jenny

      You’ve totally nailed it there re Denise Poppy!

      I’d be shocked if she was crap (and I don’t buy all that guff about “Roxy just sat on a chair”).

      Craig was a tad too panto, I think him and Len bickering will be uber-tedious…it’s a long time til Christmas.

      And Poor Kristina! No, worse than that, Poor Erin – she had clearly fixed her eye on Colin in the group rehearsals – I’m holding out for a SHOCK TWIST PARTNER SWAP (not like that) during the training weeks.

      Reply
    2. monkseal Post author

      Maybe Bo Bruce can take up her role in Davearch’s Wonderful Wonderful Orchestra and sing us some Kate Bush one week. I’m always happy to hear some Kate Bush.

      Denise wouldn’t judge anything without Barrowman by her side, KNOW THAT.

      Reply
  4. Scottieboy (@merseytart)

    Len saying he knew who ALL the celebs were made me visualise him spending his afternoons watching Tracy Beaker. Which is a bit disturbing.

    Colin Salmon is from Luton, which is my home town, and was in Bond films, which I adore, so he’s obviously the first week boot.

    Reply
  5. Llwynog

    Is it just me, but does PENDLEBITCH have scarier abs than Erin??? And on the subject of Erin, how very DARE they partner her up with Soapy Dick. I think a week 1 departure (week 2 if he clashes with Craig) for Erin Island is scheduled.

    Hands up who else was praying “please be James, please be James” when Lisa Riley’s partner was about to be announced …

    Reply
    1. Carl

      When I kept seeing Pendleton’s abs all I kept thinking was how she would cope with the big weight loss every contestants deals with. Is she going to eat Brendan halfway through the series?

      Reply
      1. monkseal Post author

        *American Smooth ideas abound* *A journey into Pendlebitch’s abdominal tract a la The Fantastic Voyage with giant polystyrene red blood cells* *dances to “I’ve Got You Under My Skin” naturally*

    2. monkseal Post author

      I really do think James would really work in an official Comedy Couple and I hope they give him a chance to show it one series, Flavia style.

      Reply
  6. katy

    I loved Bruce’s partnering for Louis “The professional you’ll be bending over backwards to please is Flavia!”

    And knowing her history with her partners, this is highly likely…

    Reply
    1. Kstar

      Ha Ha waits with popcorn for a million Falviaites to turn up and say ‘She is very settled with Jimmy actually”!!
      But then again she was very settled with Vincent and Matt Di Angelo….

      Reply
  7. rodneyandsteptoe

    Pleased to see Darcey on the panel and that her preference to sit next to her bessie mate Craig has kept him away from grumpy old man Len. Some of the pairings were always obvious (short arse Sid and Ola, petite Dani and Vincent), as were two of the pros getting the ‘older celeb’ (Aliona and Artem both having had their two seasons of potential/actual winners). I think that Robin got Lisa as he might be the only one to lift her…

    My early tips for the final:

    Denise/James, Kimberly/Pasha, Louis/Flavia.

    Reply
    1. Monaogg

      Thought it highly significant Darcy got the Arlene seat on the panel.
      Biggest shame is them trying to shoehorn a Bond connection in by putting Kristina with Colin. 😦 Natalie has been robbed.

      Reply
      1. monkseal Post author

        To be fair, Natalie and Erin have both already had a chance to do a Bond-themed routine. It’s only fair to share.

    2. monkseal Post author

      It did occur to me that Robin was the only pro really equipped to deal with a woman of Lisa’s proportions. He seems to get more ridiculously stacked every series.

      Reply
  8. Doktorb

    It’s good to have you back Monkseal. I’m preparing myself for all the new nicknames and injokes by reading through your archives.

    Incidentally, if Erin hasn’t already ordered new supplied for her island by now I’d be very surprised

    Reply
    1. monkseal Post author

      I like the implication that all my new nicknames and in-jokes will only be minor variations on ones I’ve already done.

      (They totally will be)

      Reply
  9. missfrankiecat

    Could Erin have looked more pissed off? Could it be more obvious that Jimi Mistry needs to look alert? Denise, Kimberley and Louis seem to be the early faves, but I thought the Tracy Beaker girl looked ok in the dance too, and Vincent is good with youngsters. Hating how poor Anton is already being blamed for Jerry’s downfall when, having watched her dismal attempts to bop in time to a fairly obvious beat at countless Stones gigs over the years, I fear there isn’t a cat’s chance in Hell for her rhythm, come what may. Overall I thought it all looked a bit tired last night, but maybe that’s me. Looking forward to MS reviews to revive me!

    Reply
    1. monkseal Post author

      I think Dani looked fine, but she’s probably going to invite negative comparisons with Chelsee, in much the same way Nicky is going to invite negative comparisons with Harry. That said, I think they’re both good to go to the Final 6/7 at least, by which point they should be established as people in their own right.

      I thought Jerry probably looked the worst in the opening group dance. I like her, and I hope Anton gets one or two decent stabs out of her before she leaves.

      Reply
  10. Fern

    I am happy about all of the contestants and pairs this year, so yay! So glad Flavia got Louis, I hope their showdance is amazing. I’ve wanted Flavia to win for years so *fingers crossed*

    Anton and Jerry….you know this is going to be an amazing carcrash.

    Fern Britton is my namesake but I can’t say I’m a fan, and I have a sense of dread about her being paired with my favourite pro Artem. I think they might not get on…

    I’m not sure about Victoria, she’s not used to showbiz and I think it may show. But, like you, I’m hoping for a villainous supervillain team πŸ™‚

    Reply
    1. Left Feet

      He might not even make the final to do a showdance! What you say about Victoria applies to him as well found him rather dull I’m afraid.

      Reply
      1. monkseal Post author

        I feel we should bear in mind that American Smooth basically qualifies as a dry-run Showdance these days as it appears to encompass ballet, broadway and HOOOOOO, NEW YORK.

      1. Llwynog

        I’m already hoping she gets to the final. Picture it … she’s halfway through her showdance and Anna Mears appears out of nowhere to pull a Cha Cha DiGrigorio and dance off with Brenda and the glitterball trophy. Tears??? We’d be talking tsunami at least …

  11. BookWorm

    Why do SCD do this to me? I’m one of the nutters who likes James (I know, sorry…) but every year for the past few years, they’ve stuck him with female partners I don’t like so I’m not able to wholeheartedly support him. In fact, this year, I’ll be hoping he goes first. That’s how much I dislike Denise! *sigh*

    I’m looking forward to seeing just how boring Nicky Byrne turns out to be. Other than that, go Ola & Sid! *waves tiny flag*

    Reply
  12. kkonline

    You left out the none of the above option for the pairing we are most exciting about. I’m excited about Victoria Pendleton (let’s give her the benefit of the doubt and not start off on Pendlebitch, eh? I’m sure she’ll be lovely) but not paired with Brendan. I’m beginning to wonder if they are choosing the pairings on the strength of the potential team name, voila – team Brendleton. I didn’t know who Colin or Richard were and after googling them, I still don’t!

    I’m really annoyed that Darcey is the new judge. I loved Alesha as a contestant and worthy winner but couldn’t listen to her comments because she had no authority as a judge. However great a ballerina Darcey is/was, she doesn’t have the credibility and authority on ballroom and latin, so why give her the platform over someone like Karen Hardy who’s lived it her whole life. Interesting thought above about DVO joining the judging panel next year. Darcey’s saving grace is that she has split the warring couple on the panel. If that also ends up cramping Bruno’s style, so much the better. His schtick is getting very old and tiresome. And loved the dance with Ian but then I always love to see Ian.

    Monkseal, I think I enjoy your blogs more than the show itself. Good to have you back on the case.

    Reply
    1. Left Feet

      Sorry but has not Darcey given a lifetime to a field of dance as well as Karen Hardy? Its not Ballroom/Latin but neither Craig or Bruno or Arlene for that matter are ballroom expects either and they are/were on the panel? One thing I will agree with Len with is the panel should not only have ballroom/latin expects. Karen Hardy would give a similar crit to Len and I want her to replace him when he goes but they were right to not empoly her this time.

      Reply
      1. Patrick

        100 times this πŸ™‚

        Never paid a penny before whilst watching reality shows… this record may have to change now, I am delirious, cannot wait!

        I cannot warm to Louis Smith for lots of reasons.

      1. UriGagarin

        and Obviously an opportunity to do cross programme in-jokes *Kimberlypuff gags ahoy*
        Sorry, been rereading your apprentice posts almost continously since the last series finished and am waiting for the kiddiprentice to start *drums fingers*

  13. moreglitterplease

    Hm, this year I knew Richard Arnold (who I (very bizarrly) had a crush on as a youngling), Pendlebitch (yay!), Ricky/Sid, Denise VH, and Kimberleh. Oh, and Fern Britain. Awkwardly enough I was named after her.
    I have quite a limited world view it seems.

    Reply
  14. kassieq

    No ‘none of the above option’ so I didn’t vote, sorry but I am as excited about that lot as I am a snow storm in July. This has to be Brucie’s last year, surely, he has to read everything off cards and this weird slurring and stuttering delivery of his so called jokes, is plain embarrassing. As far as I am concerned the jury is still out on Darcey, I’m going to wait and see how she turns out. Thought there were some very ugly lifts in that AS, legs aloft is not a good look for anyone.

    It’s very worrying that I am getting more and more obsessed with the idea of bringing Ian and Katya back, still beats banging on about that AT I suppose.

    Welcome back Monkseal always a pleasure.

    Reply
    1. Poppy

      I agree about the ugly lifts in the AS, I was less than fully impressed with her technique, but my mum who Knows About Dance said she thought DB was better than one of the professionals. Unfortunately, although she Knows About Dance my mum finds it hard to tell the women pros apart, so I don’t know which one of them it is.

      Reply
    2. Verns

      Seconded re Brucie’s last year (please, pretty please, oh mighty TV gods) but I am embarrassed to have to admit that I laughed at one of his jokes on Saturday – in front of witnesses. I may never live it down. I was also pretty appalled at the DB dance, happy though I was to see Ian even in a mediocre role.

      A huge welcome back, Monkseal. Well jel that I didn’t spot Piazza Dell’Olio when I was in Florence this summer. I was probably too tired from the queue at the Uffizi to notice.

      Reply
  15. swanseajane

    Hi Monkseal. Great piece. But I hope you haven’t abandoned GBBO now that this is back on the air. Where would we be without your discerning eye to guide us through the maze of soggy bottoms and meat mallets?!

    Reply
  16. Min

    I loved the way Artem tried to gingerly lift up Fern. You could almost see him thinking about his injury porn prone back. If we don’t have a woobie face and at least one trip to the physio this year I will feel short changed.

    Reply
  17. rodneyandsteptoe

    Paddy Power have just released the first betting odds post Launch:

    Louis Smith 9/4
    Denise Van Outen 3/1
    Kimberley Walsh 9/2
    Victoria Pendleton 6/1
    Nicky Byrne 7/1
    Dani Harmer 12/1
    Michael Vaughan 14/1
    Sid Owen 22/1
    Colin Salmon 33/1
    Jerry Hall 40/1
    Fern Britton 40/1
    Lisa Riley 50/1
    Johnny Ball 66/1
    Richard Arnold 66/1

    Just wondering if they might regret the 12/1 offered on Dani – I think she’s a reasonable outside bet…

    Reply
      1. Penny

        I think the bookies know that kids TV personalities always underperform in the public vote, with the exception of Gethin Jones, who had certain advantages that Dani lacks. (I have years of phone bills and disappointed anklebiters to teach me this lesson).

        Also while Dani was competent in Let’s Dance for Sports/Comic (?) Relief, she didn’t look like someone who had the potential to blossom into a great dancer.

  18. Carl

    Funny you mentioned once having a thing for Michael Vaughn. When I first saw him on the launch show I thought he was attractive. Then he started winking and I began to think he was Dan Lobb. Now I’m confused.

    Darcy reminds me of Bernice from Emmerdale, only with less personality.

    Lisa Riley was a better mover than I’d expected. Now I wish she’d gotten a partner who does more than babysit insecure women for a few months.

    Fern Britton is Mo Harris. When she talked about how she and Philip Scofield laughed all I thought of was the rumors they loathe each other.

    Reply
    1. monkseal Post author

      I still think Dan Lobb is handsome, even though obviously he is pure evil and the reason they sacked Katya etc etc day that strictly died.

      Reply
      1. Carl

        I think Lobb’s handsome but when someone relies on that a little too much you don’t find them to be as handsome.

        I’m hoping Jerry Hall is going to bring something new from Anton. I don’t think he’s ever had a partner who will be so low-key and have a dry wit. Either he will adjust, or they will be awful and leave in the first two weeks.

  19. Dancing Cake

    Thoughts so far:
    Darcy is dull and trying not to be, which is really embarrassing to watch.

    The BBC brings back the Truly Wondrous Ian Waite!
    – For ONE dance.
    – With Darcy Bussell.

    And I’m genuinely sorry for all the myriad people on here named after her, but Fern Britton sets my teeth on edge.

    But I have every confidence in you making all of the above seem hystercially funny, Monkseal. Welcome back to Strictly – it woudn’t be the same without you.

    Reply
  20. Rach

    Hi Monkseal,
    Excuse my ignorance, but why is Victoria a Pendlebitch? Is she deeply and unjustifiedly hated by the general public for some reason I’m not aware of – I’m guessing because she’s a woman who is competitive, but who doesn’t look adorably cute and humble like Jessica Ennis?
    Go team Brendlebitch!
    Can’t wait for the Strictly blog to commence proper!

    Reply
    1. monkseal Post author

      She’s an accomplished talented woman who speaks her mind and has absolutely no control over her emotions. She is a Being In Total Control of Herself. SHE IS PENDLEBITCH.

      Reply
  21. Justice Bellingham

    I’m looking forward to Safety Sex Faces.

    And Man in the Hat is back! Was so pleased to see him but Davarch and the gang seem to be down lower on the stage now.

    Reply
    1. Dancing Cake

      I was in the audience two years ago (it was the week Patsy was eliminated) and it goes without saying that the whole thing was A-MA-ZING from start to finish, but by far the biggest surprise was when Davearch A.H.W.O. were introduced to the audience at the warm up stage and Davearch GRINNED hugely and waved like a loon at everyone!! (So did the Man in the Hat.)
      Can only assume Dave has an evil twin who only lets the nice one do the warm up and then pushes him out the way when the live show starts.

      Reply

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