Strictly Come Dancing 10 – Week 6 Performance Summary

So…as harsh as I can be with this show, I think this was a week where mostly everything went well for our remaining 10 celebrities. Also Bruce wasn’t here, which I’m sure sat well with many of you but I kind of…missed the old duffer. What can I say, I’m getting soft in my old age. Claudia was great though, and I remain convinced that a “Bruce in front, Claudia in back” formation is the only way to go for this show’s future. Well…not for too much longer given that Bruce…you know…But still!

Denise & James & Ian : dance an OTT aggressive paso doble to The White Stripes. It’s one of her weaker efforts, technically, but it’s so melodramatic and silly that it kind of works for her? I wouldn’t have put her top of the leaderboard for it, but it feels like a breakthrough, personality-wise.

Richard & Erin : erm…it’s less of an embarrassment of a Charleston for Erin than Peter Shilton was? Hey, I said MOSTLY.

Louis & Flavia : do a very lovely waltz to Moon River, complete with Aliona’s swing. I half expect her to appear on it at the end of the dance, clutching her crutches with zombie eyes, like the surprise twist ending to a horror film. Instead we have to put up with more Louis judge drama as Craig gives it a 6 and everyone else gives it a 9 and we all whinge about about under/overmarking to the end of time.

Fern & Artem : produce by far her best dance yet. She lets go of her skirt, she shakes her boobs, she looks unselfconscious for the first time this series. A delight and a triumph.

Victoria & Brendan : because she’s back in ballroom and Brendan is dressed as an organ-grinder’s monkey and falls on his arse tee-hee.

Dani & Vincent : pound out a strong, sharp tango to Adele, which starts with Vincent in a phone-box. You can tell this is the fantasy world of Strictly, because it’s not full of phone-sex adverts, and you can’t pick up the reek of piss through your tv. Although that may just be because Bruce has the week off. (*meow*)

Nicky & Karen : produce his best dance yet – a foxtrot to “The Best Is Yet To Come”, which as a song choice is on the nose even by this show’s standards.

Kimberley & Pasha : whirl around in an enchanting Twilight themed Viennese Waltz, in between SHAMELESSLY advertising her new solo album in the most tragic manner possible. It sounds like it’s a bunch of covers as well, so it’s not even as though it’s worth it.

Michael & Natalie : grind out yet another Latin trainwreck for the ages, as Michael drifts in and out of the routine as Natalie hurls herself around like a scarecrow in Superstorm Sandy to cover it up. I would have preferred it if it had been themed though…

Lisa & Robin : finally bring the camp to ballroom that they brought to Latin way back in Week 1, all helped out by the presence of Natalie Cole. Then Robin falls over. HOORAY!

Here’s hoping that the celebrities somehow, against all the odds, bring the same standard of entertainment to Wembley next week. It’s a tall order, but maybe they can do it. To be fair, I’d take one of them given last year’s…performance.


44 thoughts on “Strictly Come Dancing 10 – Week 6 Performance Summary

  1. rodneyandsteptoe

    Nice summary – think that Denise ‘threw down the gauntlet’ tonight to the others, showing she is the one to beat, being top despite training 95% of the week with a different pro dancer.

    Think that Dani is giving solid performances week by week and I wouldn’t be surprised if she becomes one of the glitter ball contenders…

  2. Kkonline

    Claudia is a way better ‘Tess’ but Tess is a terrible ‘Bruce’ – and he’s hardly a good starting point these days. It would have been nice if she’d even attempted to keep control of the judges. Please could someone tie Bruno to his chair? I know Craig likes to play the stickler for everything but he also seems to genuinely have had enough of all the nonsense the other judges bring. It’s getting so tired – and Darcey can do one.

    1. monkseal Post author

      I mean…she managed to read all the cue-cards well enough, but she lacked any sort of personality or authority.

  3. JJ

    kimberley is annoying me now, that plug for her album got right on my ***** ….i love pasha but dont like him with kimberley , i dont feel they have any connection on or off the dancefloor 😦 louis is great but his pouting annoys me, he comes across as too serious , fern was good but i feel it may be too little too late 😦 denise is technically good but she bores me, no emotion between her and james so the dance gets lost for me…loving lisa and dani, they may not be technically the best but they make me smile and really perform 🙂 Nicky had his best dance by far tonight, think decent music helped and i think he is starting to settle down, think it helped he had support from the other westlife guy tonight, richard and michael were the worst for me by miles , dont really like richard and michael is a ball- room guy not latin , and victoria meh, dont really feel much for her , she has improved but gets overmarked imo 🙂

  4. catherinehirst

    It was a good week! Fern was great – she was so into it and that made it fun to watch. After this week, I think Denise is going to win it. She’s a better dancer than everyone else, period. I don’t like her much and I don’t know if the public will support her, but she’s really talented.

    I want Claudia every week. Didn’t even mind Tess without Bruce there!

    1. monkseal Post author

      The thing with Denise is that she doesn’t really seem to have an overarching storyline. She’s been good more or less from the start, she’s been really tight friends with James from the start, and she’s had more or less the same personality throughout. They’ve been doing a very good job of promoting her week to week, but there’s no overall picture, and I think that’s what people really go for. She might have off-weeks, but there’s no real struggle.

      1. Carl

        For someone with so much performing experience, she doesn’t really “pop.” I tend to forget her when she dances. My eye was on James during that entire paso. I sort of wished he had danced it with Ian (not in an LOLGAY way – I mean I actually would want to see that).

  5. Nibbs

    Good week. Got totally distracted by James and Vincent snuggling up and being lovey dovey after either Michael/Natalie or Lisa/Robins dance (Forgot which one they were doing that in the after bit of). TO THE FANFIC MACHINE!

  6. FOOF

    Love your blog Monkseal but Kim plugging her album? Really? Did they mention the title or when its out? No. If she is using Strictly for a bit of self promotion then so what, who isn’t?! Is it any different from Pash visiting Chelsee on the Waterloo Road set to practice last year?? I think the point of the VT was more ‘Kims been really busy this week viewers so if this dance is shit that’s why’ rather than to plug her album. No one will buy it anyway so it matters not. LOL!
    I thought their waltz was really beautiful and touching.

    1. monkseal Post author

      It just felt really stilted. I guess when people go to the set with someone you can have the other actors stood around to give interviews or footage of the acting, and it least feels like something that actuall needed to happen. Pasha dropping into the studio so that Kimberley can play him her new song? I dunno, it just felt forced.

  7. Ferny

    Well that was definitely the best show yet as far as dances and improvements go – much better for a few people (Fern, Nicky) and good for everyone else (even Michael….given what I was expecting/hoping for).
    I’m with you, I love Bruce and hope he carries on for a while yet and Claudia would be good in the backstage bit. I thought Tess was a lot better tonight than usual though, although that was probably down to lack of backstage interviewing tbh.
    Plus 2 falls in one night? They spoil us!

  8. Left Feet

    Sorry I didn’t miss the awful jokes and misreading of well everything. Think he has been fine up until this year and he can still do off the cuff well but tonight showed that Strictly will survive after Bruce.
    What helped was that it was the best show of the series with everybody stepping up and their were even more famous faces then ususal. Shame about the Judge spat over Louis although I’m sure that Craig is playing the “heel” he’s not really making that good a job of it. Pehaps if he had mentioned Louis lack of performance skills I could understand but technically as usual he looked pretty good much better then most. Len and Bruno were over the top but this has been Craig’s weakest series.

    1. monkseal Post author

      I don’t think Craig ever really works as the heel, because generally people either think he’s a mean judge generally so it doesn’t stand out, or they think he “tells it like it is” so they get serious cognitive dissonance when he disgarees with them. They should just have Len do it – it’s worked for the last two series.

      1. Left Feet

        Yeah Craig does not stand up and tell the punters to shut up when they boo him. I always love Len’s look of disbelief when he gets booed.

  9. General Hogbuffer

    Well, I have learnt the following from last night’s show:
    – When fed from an autocue, Tess is actually competent at presenting. Compared to when she has to rely on her natural ‘wit’ at least…
    – Claudia is a lot better with the backstage banter, and she seems to put the couples more at ease.
    – Apparently, the contestants can be introduced without cringeworthy jokes or rude insults. Who’d have thought ?
    – Is it just a coincidence that the ‘comedy’ VT’s where also much reduced or absent last night ? Can it be possible that Bruce is somehow involved in those ? Would explain the level they usually stoop to…
    – Kimberley is preparing to release a solo album which sounds like it’s mostly showtunes. Way to be relevant, Kim. Also, great commitment to the Girls Aloud re-union…

    1. monkseal Post author

      I still counted a few comedy VTs to be fair – James tying Ian up and throwing him in the cupboard, Fern’s mariachi band, Louis’ mum…

  10. Lazy Bones

    I soooo wish Claudia could be on it every week, I love how everything is always teetering on the verge of getting out of control with her yet she can (just about) rein it in while making jokes that actually make me laugh. Ideally her and Bruce would we the winning combo, but even Tess is better when she just has to basically say “what did you think” to the judges rather than try and inject some personality into her interviewing technique. Easily the most enjoyable episode for me this series, helped by everyone’s dancing well or well-ish.

    1. monkseal Post author

      I do think the show does suit a little bit of farce/chaos occasionally, rather than ever getting too slick.

  11. Rach

    I personally gave Fern a sitting ovation after her salsa (something I do very rarely – I’m not one of those braying clapping loons they used to get on ITT for that “how people watch it at home” feature) so it is a sign of a truly impressive dance. Hooray for Fern!

    I have followed this blog for yonks – it’s always a pleasure to read and it gets better and better; thanks so much for all the laffs. One question: why are you called Monkseal? Or is it part of your mystique that you never reveal this?

  12. Poppy

    My two favourite bits of last night were Claudia saying “I’m literally reading out loud”, because that’s what Tess does every week and still manages to make a pig’s ear of it, and also Tess telling Claudia that the telephone numbers have never been so interesting and then watching her realise that she’s just admitted that she’s boring and inept in front of however many million viewers.

    The dancing wasn’t bad either, but I’m getting very bored with Craig’s apparent vendetta against Louis. Your blog remains the high point of the show for me, and at one point last night they said something (can’t remember what) and I thought to myself, “Monkseal will have a ball with that!”.

    1. Carl

      I think they’re playing a risky game with Louis, because less and less of this becomes about his dancing and more about the show’s storyboarding. I already struggle to remember most of his dancing as it is. I assume next week it will be someone else’s turn to nitpick, or they will all suddenly see the light, but it’s just so forced.

      1. Poppy

        Do you think they’re criticising him only to increase his support from viewers? I wouldn’t put it past them. I think I’d rather believe that Craig is a blithering idiot, though, than that I’m being manipulated by some Machiavellian BBC plot. I suppose we’ll never know which it is.

    2. pamminxy

      Ooh I missed that faux pas by Toss and damn me for being too idle/unable to concentrate and listen to Toss long enough to go find it.
      Claudia was brilliant she should be there every week.
      Yes Toss was better at doing Brucie’s job than her own – but she was still shite and made me miss Notdead (who woulda thunk it?)! Her niche is voice overs and sooner she sticks to just them the better

      And I hate whoever decides that lighting the background in the same flashing, bright, glaring colours as the dancers is a goood thing – I have absolutely no idea how I thought Van Ringah danced as it all was a blur to me, even watching it again sober

      Fern was better than previously but still kept going back into drunk mam dancing with only a few moments of letting rip – but those moments were good.

      I hope Artem gets his spark back and actually gets to enjoy a dance with Lisa and let rip.

  13. Emma (@missdougie90)

    Claudia needs to be there every week. Her humour and general mental-ness brings a nice something to the show. Tess did absolutely NOTHING, especially when there was the big argument over Louis (I think? Watched it in the early hours of this morning). At least Bruce would have TRIED to stop it, whilst failing miserably.

    1. Poppy

      At one point she tried to move on from Darcey to Len, but Darcey just said “I haven’t finished yet” and carried on.

    2. monkseal Post author

      Bruce would have just contributed to the pile-on by yelling about how Len is right about everything. Which, let’s be honest, would have been even more fun.

  14. Joan Craven

    Cannot enthuse about the two girls presenting – that is not to say that Bruce is any better but can we not have someone with personality and not full of themselves to present the show? Karen Hardy or Ian Waite would be ideak, Ian is very popular. Same with Take Two – it should be renamed Take One because nobody can get a word in edgeways

    1. Poppy

      I saw the suggestion somewhere that Mel & Sue should do it, Mel upstairs being supportive and Sue downstairs being Bruce (only much, much better at it). I’d watch that.

      1. Penny

        Sue would be infinitely better than Bruce or Tess, but Mel, though lovely, would not be better than Claudia, partly because Claud has built up a rapport with the pros over years.

        Zoe out front and Claudia in back might work, but I’m not sure Zoe has the authority that’s needed.

        Basically we need to kidnap and repatriate Cat Deeley.

  15. Carl

    This year really goes back and forth between good to mediocre, but the weeks where the B-level pack of dancers seem to improve are the weeks that I like most. You have a lot of question marks about who is getting votes. With the dance-off, that matters much less this series – even if Louis, Denise, and Kimberley each hit bottom week after week, as long as they’re not against each other, it might not matter (although I don’t think all three of them will hit bottom anyway).

    I think Nicky went into this series with promise, and then he and Karen were so disastrous the first two dances that even improvement is likely to be ignored, since people aren’t going to get invested in that, or see Nicky as oppressing Karen, or whatever. I think there’s been a great deal of improvement in the last 2-3 weeks, with the foxtrot probably being my favorite foxtrot this series – glamour, good choreography, and, for once, Karen and Nicky seemed like real partners. He and Michael are the two I’m most keeping my eye on as potential upsets, although something tells me when either of them hit the bottom two (in Michael’s case, again) they’ll be gone.

    Michael is just so likeable, far more than I thought he would be. I probably enjoyed that comedy Latin even more than I have most of the “good” Latin dances this season, because he and Natalie work so well together and he was really trying. I thought even with the mistakes he was better this week than the foxtrot last week.

    I was hoping Tess would be a big improvement over Bruce but mostly I found her to be brittle and dull. I just wonder if showing Vernon Kaye in that opener means the old rumors of him replacing Bruce will be true. I’d rather have Su Pollard.

  16. Penny

    Richard’s dance was enlivened for me by playing “How much of this dance can Erin possibly choreograph with him standing behind her so he can copy her moves?”

    Likewise am waiting for Victoria to do ballroom in a backless dress so the HD watchers can zoom in and read Brendan’s fingerprints on her at the end. (interesting (if obvious) comment from Bruno, but I wonder why he said it).

    1. monkseal Post author

      I think Victoria might be getting a bit bored of the show now. Not to psychoanalyse, but she seems to be getting a bit worn down at putting so much effort into something she’s not very good at. I think this might be the show throwing her as dignified an escape line as they can, before she has to jive.


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