Strictly Come Dancing 10 – Week 1 Performance (1) Summary

We’re back, and dancing! With…probably the lowest average score ever for an episode of this show? Even Denise Van RINGAH only gets a 25, which is only 1 point more than Esther Rantzen got for her first dance, way back when. Either this is a herald of a brand new era in Strictly, or everyone kind of sucked. Speaking of which, somebody needs to tell Darcey not to end every setence with yeah, yeah? Because it’s really annoying, yeah? Also possibly that telling Nicky Byrne “summon all the musicality you utilised in Westlife and UNLEASH IT UPON DANCE!!!” isn’t really as constructive a criticism as you might think, ok?. Otherwise she seems to settle in well enough, and we all remember how nervous Alesha was on her first show yeah? I’m sure she’ll be cussing people out as drunken rag-dolls and turning up pissed as a fart within a few episodes, yeah?

Please? (Yeah?)

Team Fartem are up first (without even get the usual “well done for being the first couple on of the series, it must be SO daunting, have a biscuit”, poor lambs) and have probably the best natural chemistry of any of the teams. Which comes in handy, as Fern’s cha-cha seems to be her stomping around pulling sexy-menopause face whilst grimly gripping onto the hem of her skirt like some provincial Lady Mayoress in an Alan Ayckbourn play, giving out rosettes for flamenco at the country fair and trying to keep her Sunday Best dress out of the mud. Never mind, Artem got his tits out, that’s the main thing.

From there the rest of the evening is marked by people both trying too hard

  • Karen throwing in an illegal lift, lots of goofy faces, and yelling “I’LL DO ANYTHING TO WIN!!!” in Tess’ face, all to cover up a fairly stilted and stiff waltz from Nicky, dressed as a sexy mime, dancing to CURTIS STEIGERS (no).
  • James & Denise in general, although particularly Denise’s face, all over their training footage
  • The judges by low-balling James & Denise’s pretty good (albeit apparently utterly lacking in heel leads) waltz to a frankly bizarre degree to show she is NOT A RINGAH, NO SIR

and maybe not hard enough

  • Michael, after a better-than-expected but still pretty indifferent waltz, talking over Natalie’s usual drippy attempts to praise her amazing partner to the skies to waffle on for about half an hour about some bar bet he made with Shane Warne
  • the wardrobe department, who apparently ran out of Cha Cha costumes in Colin’s size, and settled on “gay prostitute from 1968”. And the same for Kristina whilst you’re at it. He, incidentally, is also a lot better than perhaps expected, but then the bizarre height difference is always going to work against him less than in ballroom

The CROWNING moment of the night though, is of course, Pendledrama, as she totters out on 6 inch heels, dressed in harem pants (WHY WARDROBE WHY?) then utterly forgets her routine about 20 seconds in, and is dragged around by the wrist like a stroppy pre-schooler who’s wet herself in Woolworths by a clearly frustrated Brendan. She then bursts into tears.

I am already frankly PASSING OUT with excitement at the Pendledrama to come. I can’t wait for her glorious comeback next week. At least…I hope she’ll have a glorious comeback next week, and isn’t in fact a bit shit, because otherwise that would just be depressing.


46 thoughts on “Strictly Come Dancing 10 – Week 1 Performance (1) Summary

  1. Neil K

    Sooooo happy to be back with Strictly evenings and logging on to see what you thought when I get back pissed from my friends house. πŸ™‚
    I didn’t respond to the previous reply about my bet regarding my Outen, Harmer and Smith vs Kimba, Boyband Boy and Pendlebitch, but it’s the overall winner that wins the cash between my deputy and me. (Her maths skills aren’t great so it would be too easy to swindle her if we based it on average positions) Who do you think might win (bearing in mind you’ve had the chance to see the crappy attempts at dancing they’ve produced thus far when we bet at the announcement of who had entered)?

    Thus far I’m liking Outen and Salmon, who neither of us picked ‘cos he was black and white middle classed female voters apparently don’t like ethnics unless they cackle when they laugh like Alesha. πŸ˜‰

    1. monkseal Post author

      *cop out answer ahoy* I genuinely couldn’t say at this stage. I think of the six Kimberley and Louis probably have the best chance (Dani and Nicky don’t seem good enough at this stage, and Denise and Victoria too divisive personality wise) but it all depends if either of them can find a personlity. Really it’s all down to Zoe Ball’s fine interviewing to tease it out.

  2. teacherlady

    Salmon’s looking good. Tasty! *lame, I know*
    Pendleramas are going to be THE highlight. She can’t dance worth a tuppenny ha’penny piece but keep the wench IN! For the larfs, yeah!

    1. monkseal Post author

      It would be Punners Delight if the two winners of the big Autumn reality shows were Salmon and Ella.

  3. Jayne58

    I am really looking forward to Jerry – “Not all fillies give a smooth ride the first time out!” Oh wow, my goddess!

  4. Jenny

    The Man In The Hat doffed his hat πŸ™‚

    That was my highlight. It was okay and if Darcey stops with the “yeah?s” she might turn out to be a decent judge.

    Bruno (has he been to Craig’s Doctor, he was looking quite “fresh”?) was the best thing in it, as ever. The Shane Warne gag was worth tuning in for, even after Tess hammered home that it was a FUNNEEE and nearly ruined it.

    Fully expect Kristina to come out in platforms one week.

  5. Penny

    Did you see the Radio Times interview where Kristyna enthused that Colin was the perfect candidate because he was “musical, theatrical and charismatic” (and not Jason)?

  6. Penny

    Oh, and photos of Brendan’s increasingly clenched Pro smile as he steered Victoria round the floor and muttered instructions out the side of his mouth will be much appreciated in the full recap please thank you.

    1. monkseal Post author

      It’s very hard to get good-quality in-motion caps with such VIBRANT (*euphemism alert*) colours going on all routine.

      1. Penny

        Oh that’s a shame. I’d settle for Pasha’s resigned “Season 9 all over again” expression as he applauded Louis from the balcony.

  7. Alli

    Who knew that inside that surly, monosyllabic, stroppy Russian was a sweet, cutie pie, cuddly wuddly Artem? I want one!

  8. Lily

    I quite like that the scoring is starting out so low. Last year I felt like everyone started scoring too high and there was nowhere to go. 10 needs to be reserved for perfection only.

  9. Ferny

    I thought I would like Artem less with Fern, but I think he will show a different side which is so far so good (and I’m not finding Fern at all annoying yet either)!

    1. monkseal Post author

      They do seem to get on rather well. He WILL get injured and alternately grumpy and looped on meds though. It is a Strictly inevitability.

  10. Amy

    So looking forward to more PendleDramz!!! in future episodes. Also I enjoyed her transformation into Mercedes McQueen hugely.
    I have now had that Curtis Stigers song – a frequent earworm of mine which I feel is unfair considering I hardly ever listen to Magic FM – in my head now for over 12 hours. Ugh.

  11. pamminxy

    The whole show felt like they had had an exorcism to get rid of the remains of evil Moira Ross!! This may be the series Strictly was reborn … let’s hope so.

    Was Tess there last night? I must have totally tuned her out, have a vague memory of her with Pendlebitch but it wafts away when i try and grasp it. Absolutely no idea what she wore or said … can we haz Amanda Lamb instead? Even Brucie had some moments where he came back from being Notdead.

    Loved loved loved the proper scoring and constructive criticism and helpful advice. Keep it up and let a 10 be a 10 again please. Don’t know about the dancers but i learn from it and like it much more than the fake gush. Darcy surprised me in a good way, yeah? I hated her as a guest judge! She reminded me of the best parts of Arlene without the embarrassing letching, and tho the yeah is annoying yah I like having something to snark about and at least she is talking to and not at people. I thought i was Alesha neutral but last night made me realise how much I tuned her out.

    I like the journeys (so suck it bitches lol) and can see some good arcs on the horizon that will actually get me connected and invested to the show and the dancers again.

    Michael was the one i was really dreading and always forgot. When i heard Nat say she was really glad to get him was WTF??? bit ott and fake there Nat gurl. Wow what a surprise, actually had a personality, still got a ways to go but what an improvement already. And she can push and push and not break him!! Yes!! Hope Erin is as lucky with Richard and she doesn’t piss off to Erin Island this season.

    Fern wasn’t expecting the criticism and I foresee a trip to the dentist if she keeps gritting her teeth and forcing that smile so hard lol
    Even liked Brenda last night.

    Tonight better be more of the same

  12. Poppy

    After the endless initial Story-So-Far VT at the start, when the music kicked in, I had an almost Pavlovian response thinking, I’m really looking forward to Monkseal’s blog tomorrow. I think this marks the moment when I look forward to reading your blog more than I look forward to seeing the show itself.

    When VP appeared in those pink trousers I actually said, “She won’t be marked well, no woman wearing trousers ever is,” and my brother (who I never knew liked SCD before…but he revealed that he’d been to watch it in the studio when Kara and Artem were in it and Kara kissed his wife but not him, which he was fed up about. How could he not tell me that before?) agreed.

  13. Kelly

    Someone needs to tell Colin that he wasn’t actually James Bond, since it looks like the show isn’t going to disabuse him of that belief.

    Pendleton…I think I might just find her a bit tiresome if she continues in this vein.

  14. Missfrankiecat

    James Jordan is a fine one to lecture anyone about posture given the way his bum sticks out in ballroom! Also loving the slightly more realistic scores, the Fern/Artem rapport and Kristina’s joy at getting a cool partner. We’re going to be watching Pendleton melt down from behind sofa cushions before this is over though!

  15. Carl

    I can’t wait to read your full blog! Please consider taking many screencaps of some of those hideously uncomfortable people in the opening “I swear I know who ___ is and I love them, don’t kill my family,” (the best being the woman with the short grey hair at the table). And Erin’s ENDLESS face of frozen terror while Karen and Nicky were blathering to Tess.

    That “bum check” with Michael only made me think he has no ass at all, which in turn causes my interest in him to decrease considerably.

    They seem to be setting Karen up as a hate figure, since she’s not able to do the victim routine when Craig critiques her. Some viewers may just think she’s a bitch, whether she actually is or not. I hated her choreography for Nicky but she has serious charisma.

    Didn’t you just love how Brendan, in the VT, went from “I’m crying tears of amazing luck,” to, “People shouldn’t expect anything!”

    Colin’s outfit was from the Blanche Devereaux Collection. “Best cha cha of the night” was faint praise indeed. I thought he’d be better.

    Tess looked horribly dehydrated, as if she was sleeping rough outside for days and someone threw an old suitcase at her to make into a dress.

    After tonight I think Natalie Cassidy and Denise Van Outen hate each other because they’re competing for the same gurning trophy.

    1. monkseal Post author

      Those poor members of the public. They never saw it coming. Those two old dears in the park especially.

  16. Libra Lady

    Pendledrama πŸ˜€ Good one. Last night was cringeworthy for so many reasons but especially for fake emotions and Victoria was the leading light there. When she started crying I wanted to smack her one and I suspect she wanted to smack Brendan for giving her a ridiculously complicated routine so that he looks good as a dancer in spite of an incompetent partner. The sooner the leaves, the better. Tonight’s show was better although fake emotions continued. I never thought I’d miss Alesha, but I do …

    1. Koalagirl

      Agree, give the girl a break! I thought she actually wasn’t bad although her nerves were obviously terrible, hence her forgetting the entire routine…I’m also expecting her to get a grip and do a blinder next time.

      1. Penny

        Why are/were people expecting Victoria to be any good? She’s a cyclist. Gymnasts, girl band members (Michelle honourably excepted) musicians, stage school graduates, and of course people who’ve been starring in dancing roles in the West End (so that’s three counts for Kimberley there) yes.

        But for any sports people other than gymnasts dancing talent is pretty much a coin toss.

      2. monkseal Post author

        Cyclists are really an unknown territory for this show, probably because it’s a bit of a niche sport. Tennis players and boxers are ALWAYS shit. Gymnasts are always at least a little bit good, as are ice-skaters. Rugby players are uniformly ballroom boys and Crap At Latin. Nobody ever votes for footballers, and cricket players are about a 60-70% bet. American Footballers ALWAYS win the US version, but that’s not even a sport is it, let’s face it, all that padding, the big jessies.

  17. Diane

    I just find it strange that people are surprised at Pendledrama , did they not watch the Olympics. Honestly it will be Pendledrama all the way because that is who she is, a complex very interesting, dramatic high achiever. If she could learn to dance in the studio as well as she can dance in the training room, we may be in for some excellent technical dancing with an edge of drama to make them truly special. Entertainment performance coaches get your CV’s ready Brendan will be on the hunt right now


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