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.