Strictly Come Dancing 10 – Week 11 Performance


Last week : Denise & James were in the dance-off.

It did not end well. They’re still picking bits of her dress out of the Man In The Hat’s digestive system. Pray for him. Still, she was against Nicky, who had the combined forced of the judges, the producers, the presenters, all the other contestants and the four horsemen of the DAHNCEPOCALYPSE all working against him, so James & Denise live to glower and pout another day.

This week : it’s two-dance week, and so the celebrities have even more demanding training than usual. What better time then to

don the dirty yellow headband of truth and do yet another tragic Comedy VT? Why not? This one sees all the contestants sprinting around backstage at Television Centre, in pursuit of the Glitterball. Lisa trips Denise on a banana skin, Kimberley locks Louis in “Brucie’s Gag Archive” (how very “50 Shades Of Grey”), and Tracy blocks Lisa from taking the lift. It makes absolutely no sense whatsoever but it does

encompass a Harry Judd cameo (IN KNITWEAR!) so I guess it’s not a complete waste of time.


Apparently Jerry Hall did this show? I’d totally forgotten. And yet somehow even in having totally forgotten I showed more commitment to her stint as a contestant than she ever did.

To the dance-floor and this week the opening dance goes even more wrong than usual, as for some reason Bruce goes for a high-five rather than a fist bump, which gets them behind the beat and

this is the rather inelegant result. I always knew it was a mistake to add more choreography to that bit. He can barely cope with reading out loud most weeks. He welcomes us all to the show, and Tess gushes that last week’s Dance Fusion Show was great, WASN’T IT BRUCE?!

THE JUDGES GAVE OUT SEVEN TENS, SO IT MUST HAVE BEEN GOOD! Whatever Tess, they’re going to give out about 50 tonight, it’s not going to make Louis’ jive any less of a hot mess. Bruce says, yeah, sure, it was amazing, because he hasn’t got where he is today by NOT just parroting whatever the show’s official line is. He’d just like to remind us of some of the amazing things the judges said – Bruno said that “stylistically the dancing was perfection”, Craig said “the choreography was brilliant”, Darcey said it was “extraordinary” and then Len said “you wot? she just stood there whilst Robin ripped her dress off, and ven she forgot ve BLAHDDY ROUTINE, I’m not giving that any more than a 6”

But then they took him off for reprogramming, and he’s much happier now. You can barely see the Lisabotomy scar. Somewhere in the audience

Cheryl Cole wonders why Denise van Outen was so kind as to buy her a ticket to see Kimberley again, and got her seats right in the line of sight of the cameras. It’s a real mystery.

Tess explains to us all that, after 10 weeks of blood, sweat, tears (mostly tears) we have reached the Strictly Semi Finals. The contestants will perform two dances each, then one of them will leave, because apparently we just can’t have a final WITHOUT Denise in it, hovering over it like the ghost at the feast, wondering why nobody likes her. IT JUST WOULDN’T BE A STRICTLY FINAL WITHOUT A SPARE PART! Tess tells Bruce that he’s in for a treat tonight

Poor Wilnelia, as it’s time to meet the STARS OF OUR SHOW!

Apparently she requested to be dressed in that colour. There’s no accounting for taste.

Once everybody’s out, Bruce reminds them all that there’s only nine shopping days left until Christmas.

Don’t worry Pasha, whatever you choose to give me, I’ll always be happy to receive. Even if it’s a bit sloppy and last-minute. In fact…maybe more so. Bruce asks everyone if he got the bars of chocolate “he” left in their dressing rooms for Christmas. I hope that isn’t a euphemism. I guess they can be glad it wasn’t a full Yule Log if it is. Speaking of turds that hung around long past their time

the toilets are blocked on Starship Karen. How lucky for her that she’s got a big strong man in to fix them for her. Looking more and more like the lost Bee Gee every day.

Tracy Beaker & Vincent Simone dancing the American Smooth

Can’t wait for Julien to reveal on It Takes Two that this week Tracy had the first Strictly dress constructed entirely out of Refreshers. Bruce tells us that Tracy has been called the Dark Horse of the competition, about a billion times. Despite her being a 20something stage school trained actress who has been appearing on stage since the age of 5. When normally that title is reserved for…you know…Carol Smillie and James Martin and people like that. Not that it bothers me, you understand. Also Vincent is her Italian Scallion and they are galloping towards the final and when she wins she’ll munch on his sugar-lumps whilst he massages her fetlocks. Or something.

Training now, and Tracy tells us that she was really nervous before her fusion last week, because she wasn’t sure if she was going to remember which parts of the routine she was supposed to quickstep in, and which she was supposed to Charleston in. See, this is why Vincent will never be as amazing a choreographer as Robin, who helped Lisa out with this by having her do one dance after the other, with a bit in the middle where she stood still so he could rip her dress off whilst yelling “WE’RE DOING THE CHA CHA NOW!”. I’m sure you’ll agree the effect was spectacular. Anyway, Tracy sighs with relief that it all went fine on the night and she got

two tens. She thinks it was the first week she really truly enjoyed herself on the dancefloor. And as Strictly is basically a “look like you’re enjoying yourself” competition half the time, that’s probably enough. She closes by saying that it was great to get a standing ovation and for Bruno to tell her she was perfect and for all of the judges to say nice things about her dance. Oh Tracy. That’s not anything special, that’s just what happens to everybody once we get to the end. Lisa Snowdon was being treated like the second coming of Dance Jesus at this point. And then we rolled back the boulder and saw the Bacofoil…

Training now, although more accurately it shouldn’t really be called “training” this week, as it’s really a segment where the couples very briefly tell us which dances they’re doing before hauling out their last best hope at winning BABY WARZ! Sadly, Tracy hasn’t got any toddlers in the family(/neighbourhood/area outside Television Centre ripe for snatching), so she’s had to resort to her

“lovely dad and gorgeous sister” to cheer her up. Presumably her pug-ugly sister was washing her hair. Tracy tells us that it was really nice to have her family there with her, because what with the 30 minutes a week of training she’s been doing, she’s had no time to see them at all. And what does Tracy do at this family reunion? Ask how Auntie Pam is? Gossip with them about how Victoria was a massive PENDLEBITCH? Get them to sneak in a better dress under her dad’s raincoat? No, of course not, they

dance their American Smooth at them. The absolute boredom on their faces is quite something. When she’s finished, her sister claps her hands and says “yay! that was adorable!”. Nothing in the world would make me feel more proud than being called “adorable” by my kid sister. Only at that point would I feel like a real adult.


I’m not definitely saying I would have had that statue pee on Vincent’s head to start the dance. I’m just saying I’d consider it. Then again I’d also have a giant ladybird roaming around and a ride-on lawnmower fly across the dancefloor midway through, narrowly missing our intrepid miniature couple, so maybe I shouldn’t be left alone in the props department. Vincent tosses a giant coin into his giant fountain and makes a wish.

At which

Tracy appears, as if by MAGIC. They’re dancing their American Smooth to “Just Haven’t Met You Yet” by Michael Buble, the song where he makes it most explicit that he’s totally messing with the heads of his female listeners. Michael Buble would TOTALLY do you ladies, it’s just that, because you live in a terraced house in Nantwich, he’s never had the chance to meet you! Please fantasise about coming to his house and buying him tokens of your love and also buy his records please. (*Please note : do not actually come to Michael Buble’s house. He WILL taze you*). The dance itself is very sweet and light and throwaway. I think it’s obvious that this is the dance that got less focus in training, but I kind of appreciate it more for the fact that it all seems so effortless and unaffected. I do hope Tracy starts a trend for all 8 year old girls to

dress themselves up in their bedroom wallpaper. I half expect a My Little Pony head to be sticking out of her armpit.

To be honest, it does share a lot of the same faults as the rest of her ballroom (she can’t really do elegant, her face is very poochy and she’s still got the old

Lindsey Lobsterhands when she does her lines) but I enjoy it far more than I did the boring clod she did last week.


It doesn’t get a standing ovation, probably because the audience aren’t fully warmed up yet. I think Nicola Roberts is probably still bumping her way along the front row, spilling popcorn on everyone and not even saying sorry. Hard to stand up through that. Bruce’s first words to Tracy when she makes it over to him?

“You’re such a tease”. Quite. He tells her that when he thinks of how she was 12 weeks…14 weeks…whatever ago, when she started the competition, compared to how she is now, it makes him so pleased. Maybe because in Week 1 she didn’t have her “front” out on display, eh Bruce? We quickly move on from this to the introduction of the judges, and the news that they’ve

started actually clapping themselves. I guess it was only a matter of time.

Bruce tells us that Craig is doing panto this year,

he’s the Wicked Queen, ha ha “Queen”, let’s move on. Len starts for the judges, as Tracy

leans on Vincent all casual-like. The styling kind of makes it look like Skipper’s out on the razz and feeling a little unsteady. Anyway, Len says that the more he sees Tracy dance, the more he likes it. Well…that is the aim, yes. I know they don’t mention it much these days, but these people are supposed to be learning. He tells Tracy that her technique is improving, her heel turns were clean, and that the lifts were good but her posture could be better. From the audience

two of Strictly’s elite look on approvingly. That’s right, it’s Ricky Nipple and Holly Valance. Who now goes by “Holly Candy”. TEAM LAZY RICH BITCH WHO DOESN’T GIVE A SHIT WITH A PORNSTAR NAME 4 LYFE!

Bruno is next, and he says that he agrees with Len. If she carries on like this, her wish may well come true. I’m not sure an American Smooth is going to get “Dani’s Castle” the BAFTAs and International Emmys it no doubt deserves, no matter how cute. He tells her that he liked the touches of “Ginger Rogers”

presumably from Ginger’s Hawaii’n Special, as he’s totally just doing the hula-hula dance there. Ginger was wearing a coconut bra whilst Fred went surfing. It was amazing. All in all he thinks Tracy is going in the right direction, and she should persist. Craig follows by saying that he liked how she and the choreography set the scene at the beginning of the dance, and “the lovely heel turn was lovely”, but her hand position needs working on and she could have held her rondes for longer.

I’m sure Bruce will volunteer to help with that one…

Meanwhile in the audience we see another Strictly Legend

it’s the Gethbot! And behind him, Project Catwalk Series 3 winner Jasper Garvida. All the stars dahling, all the stars. They are there to witness Darcey telling Tracy that she had a lovely quality all the way through her dance but she missed the sparkle and felt the routine was a tad safe. I envy them being present for such an iconic moment of Strictly judging. Before they scuttle off up to the Tessanine, Vincent points out to Bruce that Tracy is shaking like a leaflet.

Whether this started before or after Bruce grabbed her by the arm, it’s hard to tell.

Once up there, Vincent frets aloud about the tension in the studio tonight. And not just because everyone’s afraid Bruce is going to give them flu. Tess reminds them that Darcey called their dance “safe” and Tracy says there will be nothing safe about their Argentine Tango later. Are they going to do in on a bungee? Tess asks if it’s been tough learning to do two new dances in one week. Tracy replies that it has been tough learning two new dances in one week. Tess asks Tracy if the pressure is getting to her, because she’s so close to the final. Tracy replies that the pressure is getting to her, because she’s so close to the final. This interview is going NOWHERE fast isn’t it? Scores are in


Louis Smith & Flavia Cacace dancing the jive

Bruce tells us that he used the opportunity of Tess’ interview with Tracy to stick his head in the fountain to freshen up. Presumably because if Tess were anywhere other than the Tessanine she’d rush over and hold his head under. He then goes on to say that Louis will be dancing to a song by Frankie Lyman & The Teenagers. This causes him to do yet another “Bruce speaks in the youth slang of 10 years ago” bit. Here it is, transcribed in its majesty, to enjoy for all eternity.

“Respect! Get your besties round to watch this! This routine is going to be sick and dope! And babes are going to find Louis so buff! Not like me, I’m butters. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, you’re a noob. You watch them in training, cause I’m off to do some planking.”

Brucie faffs impotently that he doesn’t even know what he just read out MEANS. Yeah, that makes such a change.

In training, Louis

wearing an ikkle bobble hat bless him, says that he found last Saturday Night “unbelievable”. He thinks the fusion worked very well, because the rumba was slow, passionate, and emotional, and then they did 5 seconds of tango at the end. He really stepped it up and tried to perform, and he was really gratified to get a Standing Ovation at the end, because it’s not as though he gets one every single week is it? He really wanted to thank everyone standing up for him, but he didn’t have the time. Or the restraining orders that he’d need to stop them following him home.

He reminds us that Craig only gave him a 9 for the dance, because of his thumb, just like so many contestants before him, and Louis has this hand gesture to give Craig in return.

Not the one I was hoping for, but ok. We close with Flavia telling us that Louis is the “last man standing” and that she’s so pleased he got “tens again”. Oh Flavia. He got one. I know you’re viewing the end of this series through a haze of Camilla Madness, but don’t detach yourself from reality entirely. AND it was a Bruno 10.

Training now and Louis’ Very Special Guest is

the JLS Midget. If he’d shaved, I think Louis probably could have drafted himself into BABY WARZ, but then I guess if Midget JLS had a better eye for winning reality shows then JLS wouldn’t almost have been eliminated in favour of the aggressive single mother who made gang signs when she was voted in. Louis tells us all that he’s known Midget JLS for years because they grew up together (and probably both auditioned for X Factor together) but some of us may know Midget JLS from JLS. Not many of us though, because JLS SUCK!

JUST KIDDING! BANTERLOLS! You can really tell they grew up(/got older) together can’t you?

He then

drives Flavia directly into Midget JLS’ face, and calls him Craig Revel Horwood. Such mates. Louis says it’s really great having Midget JLS there to give him performance tips, and Midget JLS says he’s so proud of how far Louis has come. He also thinks it’s really great that Louis has got two really different dances for his semi-final, as they’ll allow him to show really different aspects of his personality. Well, hark at Mr Expert here. And yet it was MEWWY CWISSMASS JLS they invited onto the Xmas Special. You can tell Midget JLS is seething inside a little.


Yes, this is a routine set in an American High School, where Louis is the star of the school basketball team, and he’s set out to seduce the cheerleading

coach. I’m not saying that Flavia’s not pretty. I’m saying she’s not a teenager. I’m a little disappointed that they haven’t get her in the full Sue Sylvester gear to be honest. Nice to see that she’s got a Nutter’s Den in her locker to Louis though. You should see the shrine Camilla built to Gethin during Series 5. Sadly it was burnt down by…somebody after the semi-final. All that remains is a little fire-damaged Blue Peter badge. *sniff*

Being nice, I can say that

his performance skills have definitely improved, and that’s about it, because this jive is a HOT MESS. They’re dancing to “Why Do Fools Fall In Love?” and it’s all really bobby, flat-footed and, to be honest

camp. His kicks are abortive and the choreography is a little uninspired. It feels like Nicky’s jive all over again, albeit for different reasons. At least there we had some half-decent training footage to suggest it might have been good. But there’s no swagger, no coolness, and it’s all a bit

awkward and un-coordinated and all danced far too large and loose. The absolute worst bit is where Flavia succumbs to her basest instincts and just

throws in a gymnastic maneouvre because she can. I’m always in favour of dumb gymnastic tricks, but only if the vibe is “LOOK WHAT I CAN DO!” rather than “well…we might as well stick one in”. There’s no triumph to the move, and it feels like a placeholder. It’s the gymnastic equivalent of scratching your arse and burping.


Bless him for having a picture of his mother in his locker. What a good boy he is. The only redeeming feature of the entire routine comes next :

Louis nearly pulling the entire set down around him. Either that or he’s actually humping his locker. The audience of course give the routine a Standing Ovation, which Bruce assures Louis that he’ll remember for the rest of his life. Along with the 10 others he’s got, presumably. Bruce goes on to say that Louis’ dance took him back to his youth.

It reminded him of when he used to go to the Mecca with Patricia every Saturday Night. I’m going to use “going to the Mecca with Patricia” as a euphemism for “wanking” from now on, and I suggest you do too. It being the second routine of the night, it’s also time to introduce Davearch, The Man In The Hat, and our singers, who have another new addition to their line-up tonight.

Vigo from Ghostbusters 2. So if you’re wondering why that purple sludge starts dribbling out of Lisa’s plughole later, that’s why. So to speak.

Bruno is first for the judges, doing his best impression of an

aroused camel, and throwing “everyone clearly loves you” sops to the audience before coming for his kicks and flicks and telling him that they were neither clean or sharp. His timing was off as well. Up on the Tessanine we saw the formation of a little

Chorus of Disapproval that will be running rampant all evening. Meanwhile Bruce sets up a chain reaction of fist bumps with Louis, resulting in this

and Louis’ near disqualification. So would have been worth it though. I’d give up my chance of the glitterball to punch Bruce in the arse. Craig follows, and says that he’s going to be nit-picky. He didn’t think Louis’ finger-clicks were sharp enough. Trust Craig to find the tiniest nit possible when there’s a whole colony of fleas just around the corner. It was flat-footed, and awkward, and it seemed like there was a mistake, although he doesn’t quite no what was accidental and what was on purpose there to be honest. Louis handwaves that it all went fine. Honest.

Darcey’s next

apparently having ripped the wings off a tiny little sparkly butterfly (JUST LIKE WHEN SHE REPLACED ALESHA, AM I RITE?), tells Louis that that was certainly a fun routine, and that he got the style and performance just right. But the kicks were too soft, and he needs to work on being sharper with his legs in general. She was expecting more, and it’s such a shame *pats head*. She tells Louis to really pull something out of the bag in the next dance, and Louis promises that he will. Unfortunately in saying this he is ENCROACHING ON LEN’S VALUABLE TIME TO SPEAK WHEN HE TALKS ABOUT PIGS BUMS AND HIS PROSTATE AND PICKLING HIS WAWNUTS and we all know how Len gets when that happens, right?

He tells Louis that that dance didn’t cut it, and was far too casual. He thought Flavia’s choreography was samey, the whole thing was too slow, the kicks and the flicks were crap, and the overall quality of dancing wasn’t good. Just note all that down for when the scores come in.

Up to the Tessanine they flip, where Louis

mugs his discomfort. His performance skills really ARE improving aren’t they? Tess says he should come up to her Tessanine, to get some TLC. That’s “Tess’s Loving Clun[JOKE REDACTED ON ADVICE OF LAWYERS]. Tess tells him not to worry, because he got the “first standing ovation of the night despite some harsh comments from the judges”.

a) there’s only been two dances
b) map your sentences, Daly.

Louis replies that his second routine in training is always better than his first, and he thinks that he should have another go and get it right. Oh Louis. The only way you’re doing that routine again is if you’re in the dance-off and your second routine is somehow WORSE. And neither of those are going to happen, let’s face it. Tess then decides to remind us all that Louis is the only contestant remaining who isn’t a stage-school RINGAH BITCH /(“from a performance background”) and he’s come so far with that in mind. Would he say that Strictly has in fact changed his life? Louis says that it has, in that he hopes he’s more outgoing now, and all the people who come up to him in the street just want to talk about Strictly. It’s as though he was never a gymnast at all! Because I’m sure all of the rest of the GB Gymnastics team get approached all the time about their Olympic glory. Like Ginger and Thing-Face. What’s his name? The Brummie one? ALL THE TIME. Scores are in

31. “That was shit to the point of unwatchability – 8!” You can tell it’s a semi-final can’t you?

Denise Van NOTARINGER & James Jordan dancing the tango

Bruce reminds us that last week Denise did a very fast jive, combined with a very fast quickstep, all coming together to make one of the fastest dances ever seen on Strictly. They did very well, and got 38 points from the judges…no they didn’t they got 35 points from the judges, erm…and they got 3 points for speeding WA-HEY!

The secret of comed TIMING!

Bruce tells us that his only excuse for that mess-up right there was because he had the flu this week. And…every other week? Apparently Len, Bruno and Darcey all also had the flu this week as well. I shudder to think how that was communicated.

VT now, and Denise tells us all that the fusion of quickstep and jive last week was really tricky because they’re both really fast and an accident was really bound to happen. We’re then treated to

Denise’s heel getting caught in her dress, in slow motion, with tinkly pinkly piano music playing over the top, straight from a hard hitting indie rom-com about quirky cancer. Denise says she was devastated that her wardrobe malfunction put her in the position of being in the bottom 2, because she’s loved this whole experience so much, from the mild whiplash to the constant traumas of the dress rehearsal to having Chris Evans on her back all the time. SUCH FUN. She’s got to stick so many new names on Denise’s Enemies List.

Anybody want to guess who Denise’s Very Special Guest is?

That’s right, it’s her own adorable moppet child from her unholy coitus with Lee Mead. Denise tells us that it’s so nice to have a distraction from the strains of having to learn two dances, especially as

James has stopped playing these sorts of games with her. He thinks he’s too grown up to do sock puppets with Denise now! Well WE’LL SHOW HIM BETSY! Denise & James dance for Betsy.

Betsy doesn’t give a shit. BETSY FOR HEAD JUDGE 2013 PLZ! Not least because when Denise finally abandons all pretence at subtlty, and just points Betsy at the camera to vomit cuteness over everybody,

Her “KEEEE DANSGIGGAGGG!” is more coherent than Bruce’s and her hold with Denise is more elegant and his with Tess. Such a little pro.


Denise’s utter soppiness over her kids is almost as endearing as Gavbot’s was. This is supposed to be a TANGO Denise, look like a moody prozzy please.

That’s better. She and James are dancing their tango to “Roxanne”, like so many couples before them, although in this case it’s the Police original, not the Moulin Rouge Cookie Monster remix. I think I just like Denise better in these aggressive, more passionate dances. She’s kind of like a reverse Ali Bastian. Combine the two of them and you’d have the perfect Blonde Ringerbot, but as it stands, the whole package just isn’t there. Cracking tango though, especially her head-snaps, and not a spin to be seen.

Some random bits of paso doble though. And some bits where she’s just

kicking James in the face. You can tell she’s imagining it’s Chris Evans.


It gets a Standing Ovation and people jumping up and down in the aisles and screaming. Which must be nice for her. Of course Bruce does his whole “oh Denise! you will remember this sight forever!”

Yes Bruce, and now it’s tainted by you staring her down going “LOOK! LOOK!” in the middle of it. There’s a reason it’s not “SOME PEOPLE ARE ON THE PITCH! LOOK! LOOK AT THEM! LOOK AT THEM STANDING! NO! GO ON GEOFF! LOOK! LOOK! Oh you’ve missed your goal, never mind…” Somewhere in the middle he growls at Denise to stop her daughter nicking “his catchphrases”. You can tell he means it as well. (Also LOL at that being “his” catchphrase when Tess says it at exactly the same time as well).

Craig starts for the judges, and says Denise could off to a cracking start with her floor spin, and it didn’t stop there. Unlike Lisa later. Flailing around like a drowning ladybird. But we’ll get to that.He loved Denise’s flamenco port de bras and her posture, but he saw a bit of gapping on occasion. This of course sets Len and Bruno off, yelling

“YOU’RE WRONG! RUBBISH! RUBBISH!” because…they have Craig’s eyes now, apparently. Denise meanwhile

just grins throughout like a woman who fell face first into the Ribena factory and LIKED IT. On the other hand, in the audience

Elaine Paige is pulling s spectacularly sour face. I’m not sure if it’s at Craig or Denise, but either way I hope it’s because of a spectacular West End Wendy feud. Darcey is next and says she really loved Denise’s attack and aggression but her kicks were a little bit wonky because they were too high. To be fair Darcey, she WAS trying to get Chris right in the brain, so it’s understandable. Len steamrollers in next, saying that he hates it when the other judges bring out such trivial objections. Darcey squeaks “trivial?!” and pulls

a face to match. They are going to have such a cat-fight at the wrap party, I swear. Len says that Denise is the “No Stress Express” and whilst he thought the beginning of her dance was “too paso-dobley”, once she got into hold she did a PROPER TANGO and no mistake. Bruno closes by yelling stuff about “ROXANNE WARRIOR PRINCESS!” and “YOU CAN GRAB ME ANY WAY YOU LIKE!” and I realise that, sadly, we have reached the part of the series where Bruno is functionally useless.

Up to the Tessanine they put on their red lights, and Tess congratulates Denise on being the cause of the first judges fracas of the evening. I don’t think that’s anything to be proud of, really. Tess asks her if being in the dance-off gave her the motivation to come out tonight all guns blazing. Denise replies that it did, and also she’s forgotten it completely and put it behind her. Well that makes a TON of sense.

Artem in particular looks very confused. Then again he’s been with a partner who was never bottom 2, a partner who went out in her first bottom 2, and a partner whose reaction to being in the bottom 2 was entirely obvious (in that she didn’t give a shit) so he’s never had to navigate the choppy waters of post Bottom 2 blues in the way that James…so often has. Tess closes by asking Denise if it’s been a grind having to put so much work in, day in day out, for 11 weeks, and Denise insists that she has fun, even thought the BANTERTRON5000 got broke when James kicked it following their dance-off last week! Honest! She did that one VT with the sock puppets once! FUN FUNNITY FUN! Scores are mercifully in…


Kimbotley Walsh & Pasha Kovalev dancing the American Smooth

Before introducing them, Bruce asks the judges if his voice sounds sexier than usual this week, what with his cold and all. This is a bit like asking if the Kalahari is any wetter than usual because someone spilled their teacup in it. Bruce reminds us that Kimberley scored a perfect 40/40 in their Fusion last week, so the pressure is really on this week to deliver. Oooh, ahh, etc.

VT time now and

Kimberley’s signature pout wheels past us in slow motion, as she tells us that she loved Fusion Week and that Pasha’s choreography was amazing. She really liked it when Len got to his feet to give her a standing ovation, and in fact couldn’t believe what she was seeing. If it had been Bruno however, she would have been insulted, because if Bruno’s not grinding his crotch around and yelling obscenities, you can tell he didn’t really like it. She closes by saying not at all smugly that she was hoping just to push her score up a point or two from her usual berth of 34 but

OOPS, SHE BLEW IT OUT OF THE WATER BY BEING AMAZING, NEVER MIND. She certainly wasn’t expecting it to be her who’d get the first 40 of the series but it turns out she’s just that much better than everyone else. I kind of love Smug Kimberley.

Training now, and Kimberley’s visitors are

an assorted ragbag of family, friends, well-wishers and random children. It’s the oddest assortment of people crammed into one studio ever. I half expect to see Lennox Lewis in the back there randomly. Again, she doesn’t so much interact with them as just randomly dance all up in their faces. The random odd-bods say they already knew that Kimberley was an amazing performer, but they never realised just how hard she’d worked at that until they came into the rehearsal studio with her. Clearly they’ve edited out the part where Kimberley walks around punching herself in the face yelling “STUPID KIMBERLEY, STUPID!”. Kimberley for her part says she’s not sure how she would have got through her Strictly experience without them. Particularly the guy at the back.

Oh, no, wait that’s just me. Carry on.


Ooh, dramatic! Right into the cunniliftus. The dance is to “Fever” and begins with a

dramatic head-turn followed by a

super-ridiculous lift, as Pasha squashes all of Kimberley’s greatest hits so far into the first 5 seconds of the dance. Where can she possibly go from here? The answer being

1930s femme-fatale encouraging Pasha to murder her husband for the life insurance money realness, obviously. As you can see her face sometimes gets a little…Hyacinth Bucket falling into a hedge, but other than that it’s sultry, seductive, and sexy as hell. The second lift is a little Cupid Stunty, but then I guess you can’t expect Pasha to get the cultural reference, to avoid it really, can you?


It gets a Standing Ovation, and when they arrive at Bruce he says that he never thought that that was a song you could dance to, but Kimberley just proved him wrong. Feel free not to try it yourself Bruce. Please.

Darcey starts for the judges, pie-eyed, saying that Kimberley reminded her of a true film star out there on the dance-floor. This is what Darcey thinks a “true film star looks like.

It’s practically Vivian Leigh isn’t it? She praises Kimberley for her timing and all the lovely details that she had throughout, particularly when she did the splits. The sexy sexy splits. Len follows by saying HE’S got a fever! A NIT-PICKY FEVER, because the dance wasn’t in hold enough. Like, one person boos, which is enough to set Len off with his

faces that he does. Fortunately Kimberley’s no Kara, so he’s not going to score her…2 or whatever she got.

Not whilst Nicola Roberts is there to STARE HIM OUT anyway. Len goes on to say that Kimberley was like that classy old movie star Jessica Rabbit, at which Darcey hoots up that she was like Cyd Charisse, and Len pitches another petit mal at being questioned. Bruno’s next and yells

“THAT FEVER CAN CAUSE AN EPPYDEMMIC! THAT WAS AN AMERICAN SEX BOMB!” Thanks Bruno. He does at least land on a more appropriate actress than the other two numpties, by calling her Rita Hayworth. We mos know our tragic old Golden Age actresses, and that was Pure Gilda. Craig closes by saying that he would put that routine right on stage in one of his shows.

What he doesn’t tell Kimberley is that he’d get Lisa Riley to dance it. He says that the dance was liquid, mellifluous and contemporary and he loved it, apart from the part where her chin was too far down. Pasha claims it was because she was looking into his heart. Sometimes I think Pasha is too smurfy to live.

Up to the Tessanine they burn, where Kimberley gives Tess her most ridiculously extravagant hug yet.

Sometimes Erin’s Background Bitch-Faces are worth the licence fee on their own aren’t they? She wouldn’t hug Tess even if she was on fire and needed to put the flames out on something. Tess gushes that Kim truly is a RED HOT RITA, and that the audience loved it, particularly Nicola and Cheryl. The camera CRASH-ZOOMS on Cheryl Cole with such indecent haste that even she laughs about it. Tess then tells us that she has grown male friends who cried when Kimberley got her 40. Is she talking about Pasha? I think she’s talking about Pasha. Kimberley says that she was on a low before her magical 40/40 experience but it gave her the strength to carry on and dance again. Tess asks her how it feels now that people are calling her a contender, and she says she’d really love to be in the final next week. SO MUCH. Scores are in

38. Well it’s looking more and more likely Kimberley.

Little Lisa From Manchester & Fun Bobby dancing the salsa

So! Much! Fleshtone! Also, I swear I hear booing from the audience, but given that you’re apparently obliged to express yourself in as primal a fashion as possible from the second you enter the Strictly studio, maybe it’s a good thing? Bruce tells us that Lisa’s dances have a truly international flavour, with her salsa being Caribbean (or, if you’re Len, from Croatia) and her American Smooth being…erm…American. Yes, that really distinguishes them from all the Morris dancing everyone else is doing.

VT now, and Lisa tells us that she’s never been as nervous as she was last Saturday. With good cause it turned out. Her tango was “foot perfect” (even if she does say so herself) but she went wrong in the cha-cha, where you’d expect her to be AMAZING! Yes, because when I think of Lisa, I think “perfect Latin technique”. Particularly after her samba. We’re reminded of Lisa’s terrifying sex noises of safety, and I think that’s all I can deal with for one VT.

Lisa’s visitor in training is

her nephew. To say she reacts like she’s being reunited with her own child, AFTER IT HAD BEEN STOLEN BY THE NAZI, would frankly be an understatement.

Robin meanwhile, keeps his distance at all times. I’m not sure if he’s really a kid person. Which would be ironic given the target of…most of his choreography. Lisa explains that her nephew is the love of her life and she hasn’t seen him for 11 weeks. Having him there was just what she needed at this stage of the competition. I guess we should all have so close a bond with our families.

Close and…vaguely terrifying.


Darcey’s complete unwillingness to play along with Robin playing the bongos on her head is quite something. Lisa is dancing her salsa to “Best Years Of Our Lives” by Modern Romance, with a random jungle theme. It doesn’t start off awfully, in that she’s moving her hips and hitting the choreography (although her shimmies make Denise’s look positively WILD). I mean, it’s all a bit pedestrian, but it’s still better than her samba. Then

this happens. I’m not sure why Robin thought Lisa should be doing a death spin. Naturally she flobs over herself awkwardly and winds up

facing completely the wrong direction, such that Robin has to actually twizzle her around to face the right way, Then, in the ultimate indignity, he has to pull her up off the floor because she can’t make it up herself. The audience are actually laughing at her as all this happens, which makes her little speech in the Results Show about how DETERMINED she was not to be the Comedy Contestant a little sadder in retrospect. Then they do the

Oops Upside Your Head dance, but standing up. Then Robin does a move where he does a headstand in which Lisa is playing the role of the playground wall. There is absolutely no recovering from ANY of that, sadly.


Do you know who liked that?

Anton. Says it all really, doesn’t it? Oh and the audience give it a Standing Ovation. How must Tracy be feeling at this moment? To be beaten in the Standing O stakes by THAT? Lisa cackles to Bruce that she couldn’t see Robin whilst she was lying on the floor! To be fair, the fact that his shirt is more or less the same colour as his skin can’t have helped either. Len starts for the judges, guffawing that Lisa makes him a “happy chappy”. He says that routine had it all going on, with bits falling off all over the place.

What is it with these cameramen and zooming in on Lisa’s face at the worst possible moment? Anyway, Len says the technique was crap and laboured, but it was all fun, so who cares? We’ve all been there, haven’t we ladies? Bruno is next and he tells Lisa that she was a “good time girl who said to hell with the salsa!”. Thanks Bruno. He goes on to say that a technical assessment would be irrelevant. Coming from you Bruno, yes it would.

Craig is next, but he’s too choked up laughing to give a critique.

Darcey closes by just talking about Lisa’s blessed “energy”. Again. Some more. Forever.

Up to the Tessanine they spin, where Tess tells Lisa that in her 9 years on the show, she’s never seen Craig crying in a good way. She wasn’t around when someone told him what happened to Jan Ravens’ career post-Strictly then? Tess asks Lisa what it’s like to bring the fun to Strictly, and Lisa says that she’s having the best time of her lfie dancing with her Beautiful Bobby. She loves performing – it’s just like food to her! Yes, both of them seem to involve the use of her mouth prioritised over any other part of her body for a start. Scores are in

31. Somehow. Brenda’s face afterwards is…interesting. As is his yelling “SPIN ROUND ON THE FLOOR AGAIN!”.

Halfway leaderboard?

Now let’s all regroup and prepare ourselves for the second half.

Tracy Beaker & Vincent Simone dancing the Argentine Tango

Bruce introduces them by saying “here they are again, and why not?” What a ringing endorsement. Then again, by this stage “why not?” is the most enthusiasm I can rustle up for a lot of teams. “Why not? It’ll fill some time I guess”. Bruce tells us that Tracy will be appearing in panto this year as Cinderella. He then goes on an EXTENDED rant about how, when women go shoe shopping they have to go in every shop, try all the shoes in each shop, THEN go back to the first shop and buy the first pair they tried on, THEN go off and buy accessories.

I’ve never seen him more angry. Maybe he’s cottoning on that that’s just what Wilnelia TELLS him she does when she leaves him at the golf course…

Anywho, it’s this time of the series, so it’s time for

JUDGES HOLODECK! Within three second Tracy has been called a pocket rocket and a smurf. What a legacy. Len tells her that being small is in some ways an asset and in some ways a disadvantage. An asset in that her dancing is always neat and precise, but a disadvantage in terms of the therapy bills she’ll rack about the recurring dreams with Brucie as Gargamel chasing her around a giant mushroom. Indeed, Craig says that Tracy is so short that he didn’t even notice her until she flashed her foof at him in the jive, and that was over a month in.

Bruno goes on to say that his favourite dance of Dani’s was the Viennese Waltz, because it was just magical, and Len says that he agrees that it really showed her potential, but he thinks she struggles in the slower dances to really show her musicality. Craig meanwhile grizzles that he wants to see something new and exciting from her, and Len agrees. He says that he wants to expect the unexpected, because when things aren’t unexpected you just expect them. Thanks Len. He goes on to say that he’s given Tracy more 9s than any other contestant whilst Darcey pulls her best village fete

“so tell me more about your prize-winning marrows Mr Davies” face. She, incidentally, has absolutely no opinion regarding Tracy at all. Whatsoever. What’s the point of rigging up Judges Holodeck if you’re just going to stay mute DARCEY? Hmmm? Len closes by saying that he hopes that Tracy elevates her Argentine Tango to the level that she deserves 10s, and with Tracy herself busting in to say that she’s going to get her wow factor out in the Argentine Tango, because she loves Vincent and she doesn’t want to leave him.


Oooh, someone’s left the toilet-seat up AGAIN.

And it looks like he’s peed on the floor a bit again. And

you don’t even want to see the mess in the medicine cabinet. Yes it’s time for Tracy Beaker to transform into a GROWN SEXY WOMAN before our very eyes, via the magic of Argentine Tango. At least, I’m sure that was the plan, but it never quite takes for me. It’s all a little awkward

and a little kiddish. Vincent has absolutely gone to town on the choreography though, with lots of flicks and scuttles and leaps and slides and DIRTY LOOKS and puffing your chest out like a sexed-up pigeon, and is clearly really pushing her, and I don’t think she’s quite matching it. The most awkward part is how the routine is presumably supposed to start with a dramatic silence, but the audience are so busy going “ooooh” and “ahhhh”, cheering, clapping, and generally acting like they’re in the audience of Friends, that you can’t really tell. Maybe Nicky was telling the truth about his cha-cha ALL ALONG. On the other hand it’s the best Argentine Tango of the series, easily, and at least it’s not to a SODDING BOND THEME.


Inside the studio, it gets a rapt standing ovation. Well, rapt apart from Cheryl Cole

who’s having a natter with a friend. Once they’re over to Bruce he tells them that he really appreciated the use of authentic tango music. Yes, Bruce is so often the last bastion of the PURITY OF DAHNCE on this show. Len starts for the judges, after a bit of a kerfuffle over whether he’s speaking first or last, resulting in Bruce actually having to point his cue-card at him to prove the point. Then again if we went by what Bruce has scribbled on his cue-card, Tracy would be receiving her comments with one boobie hanging out so…anyway. Len liked the start, where Vincent got his leg over, and from there Tracy capture the mood and the technique of the dance perfectly. So long as the mood was “newlywed bride discovers husband’s poor toilet hygiene after moving in togehter”. He also tells Tracy that she has captured his heart, as though it hasn’t been clear all along that his love for her burns as bright as Darcey’s disdain. Bruno tells her that she is a lady of the night who morphed into Vincent and grew up on the dancefloor. Tracy’s “…yay?” when he tells her that she looks like a hooker is officially my FAVOURITE TRACY BEAKER MOMENT OF THE SERIES BY FAR.

Craig is next, and sighs that Vincent has taught Tracy so much, and she’s such a great study. He thinks one of her lifts was bumpy, but other than that it was spectacular. Bruce makes sure to hype up that Vincent is “master of the tango” some more, just in case we missed that one of the 70 other times they’ve mentioned it, before Darcey closes us out by saying that she enjoyed Tracy’s intensity, and her control but her legs weren’t straight or crisp enough. I hope if Tracy wins, Darcey goes full-on Len with Tom Chambers. Just stands there slow-clapping with her face twisted up with RAGE. But that would require Darcey to be interesting.

Before she’s sent up to the Tessanine, Bruce clutches her hands and whimpers gratingly at her, in the tone of someone who blogs about opera, that she just performed one of his very favourite dances so so well. Once she’s up there Tess bobs down to her level and grins

“YOU’RE A LADY!” in her face. Because, you know, she’s the expert. Tess goes on to ask her if she was daunted working with the Master Of Argentine Tango (*drink*) and she replies that actually she thinks that Vincent was more nervous about living up to his reputation than she was. Yes, many men have that problem. The next issue of business for Tess is beaming merrily to Tracy that she stole Len’s heart. Can I just remind you that she started off this Tessanine by saying “you’re a lady!” and not 30 seconds later she’s talking to her like she’s Shirley Temple

like this. She then asks if Tracy thinks she did enough to earn one of his “elusive tens”. That’s one of LEN’S elusive tens. It is to laugh. Scores are in


Louis Smith & His Mum dancing the foxtrot

I feel like that little old lady is judging me SO HARD. Bruce tells us that he learnt this week that Louis is bringing out a saucy calender for 2012. Erm…surely that should be 2013 Bruce? Oh…no…wait…it’s for Louis fans. Like they’d care what year it was for. They’re not going to be using it for marking up dates.

Judges Holodeck now, and Len beams that “our Olympic Hero” Louis Smith has turned into a “dancing demon”. Let’s be honest with ourselves. You may love Kimble, or Denise, or Lisa, or Tracy, or Michael or Nicky or even…I dunno…FERN or somebody, but this year really should have been an Olympian Special. IMAGINE!

Louis Smith & Flavia Cacace
Ben Ainslie & Natalie Lowe
Andy Murray & Kristina Rihanoff
Mo Farrah & Iveta Lukosiute
Peter Wilson & Erin Boag
Greg Rutherford & Karen Hauer
Jason Kenny & Ola Jordan

Victoria Pendleton & Brendan Cole
Nicola Adams & Vincent Simone
Laura Trott & James Jordan
Katherine Grainger & Anton du Beke
Jessica Ennis & Pasha Kovalev
Jade Jones & Robin Windsor
Charlotte Dujardin & Artem Chigvintsev

Don’t even pretend that that wouldn’t have been the greatest thing ever televised. Fourteen COMPETITIVE SPORTSMENS all clawing one another’s eyes out and crying everywhere over winning THE GREATEST GOLD OF THEM ALL. Len would DIE.

Oh yeah, erm, Louis. Anyway, Darcey oddly enough has words to say about Louis. She thinks he has the

full package. I think she might be a little disappointed at the wrap party. Not that Flavia is letting him anywhere near her boy after she’s been on the shandies anyway. Everyone mocks Darcey for being a dirty birdie, particularly Bruno, like he’s got ANY room to talk. Then everyone sighs over his BREAKTHROUGH Charleston and how it was such a BREAKTHROUGH and had lots of tricks in. Darcey was particularly impressed by the one where he nearly smashed “Flavia’s beautiful face” in. I wonder why.

Craig then reveals to us all that Louis’ problem is in his performance and acting skills. Well that’s why they pay Craig the big bucks I guess. Who else could have picked that out? Craig picks out Louis’ paso doble as particularly poor, and then we get to relive his scrunched up angry hamster face. Bunton would be so proud that her legacy found a torch-bearer that day. Everyone agrees that Louis needs to start putting 100% of himself into every performance, or he won’t win. Yeah, that sounds right. (*face*) We close by cutting to Louis saying that if he wants to get to the final, his foxtrot needs to have a perfect combination of technique and performance.

I’m too distracted by his Edd The Duck hair to really care either way what he’s saying.


Where they’re in Washington DC for some reason. Maybe he’s supposed to be Barack Obama and she’s supposed to be Monica Lewinsky, back for a crack at another President. GOTTA CATCH EM ALL! Given the state of Wardrobe this year, I wouldn’t be surprised to see the infamous stain either. They’re dancing to “Somebody That I Used To Know”, because Flavia’s been at the choreographical crack-pipe again, and has liberally sprinkled the routine with odd accents and

strange moments. It’s an odd, clingy, needy, bitter sort of foxtrot, with Flavia playing the role of a spurned lover or possibly she’s chucked Louis out of the house because she KNOWS SHE SMELLED MARIJUANA IN YOUR ROOM LOUIS, DON’T LOOK AT ME LIKE THAT, I GREW UP IN THE 70S YOU KNOW, I’M WELL AWARE OF WHAT MARIJUANA SMELLS LIKE and now she wants him to come back. He dances it very well, because Louis always does suit the dances where he can dance big and make grand sweeping gestures. My only real problem is that they appear to be dancing it like they’re on pontoons. There’s a lot of bobbiness and funny lurching angles. Ah well. Better than his jive, but clearly this wasn’t his week.


(The band’s rendition of the song was…truly special, it has to be said. Although not quite to this level.)

They get a Standing Ovation, and Bruce says “there they go again”. You can tell even he’s getting a bit bored of it at this point. He tells Louis that he should have brought a camera with him to capture the moment. It’s alright Bruce, I think someone’s filming it. Bruce then starts singing “Baa Baa Black Sheep” because that’s what the song reminds him of. Or maybe just because. It’s been a long night.

Craig starts for the judges with his

verbose and considered critique as ever. Louis jokingly asks if Craig is giving him a “thumbs up”. Flavia’s Mum Laugh is, as ever, terrifying. Craig does go on to say that, apart from the thumb, he loved the dance. He thought it had fantastic rise and fall and great authority and drive. Darcey follows by saying that Louis “got it” in this dance (she wishes), and she’s so relieved he did. She loved his control and his rise and fall and thinks he made the dance look too easy.

Len is next, and says that actually he thinks that Louis’ rise and fall was a bit too bobby on occasion. You can hear Darcey muttering “…trivial” in the background. It’s so amazing. Len goes to call Louis a TRUE SPORTSMAN! He gets knocked down, and then he comes back stronger (wielding an axe). It was a much better performance and a nice routine, so well done. Bruno calls Louis a smooth operator with a twinkle in his eye who is back on top where he belongs. Thanks Bruno.

Bruce dispatches them off up to the Tessanine with a bizarre combination of fist-bumps and high-fives, straight out of the Gay Masons. Once up there, Tess thanks Louis for not lying to her when he told her he was going to come back stronger in the foxtrot. Louis says that he was REALLY nervous, but Tess says that she saw no emotion pass over his face whatsoever during the dance. Makes a change. She then asks him just how much he wants to be back for the final next week, and he replies that he knows it’s a long shot (!) because there are so many amazing people still in the competition.

Even Flavia’s struggling to keep a straight face for that one. Although she’s not so secure that she doesn’t promise that Louis will get his tits out in the showdance if they make it to the final. Oh Flavia. That was desperate. Tess reminds us all that “anything goes” in the showdance. Usually it’s dignity. Scores are in


Denise Van Doomed & James Jordan dancing the rumba

Bruce reminds us that Denise has been both top of the leaderboard and in the dance-off, so in terms of her Strictly journey, her highs could not have been higher, and her lows could not have been lower. She’s never managed both at the same time though (HI ZOE! HI BUNTO!).

TO THE HOLODECK! Where Bruno is calling Denise “the Blonde Bombshell” as the screen flickers still frames of her like she’s in a regional theatre version of Gone With The Wind. And maybe, one day, she will be. A week next Friday seems about right. Len beams beatifically about her wonderful footwork, clean lines, and general precision. Nobody however bigs up her

“taking praise” face, and rightly not.

The next issue is everyone saying how marvellous her Charleston was, and then ganging up on Craig for not giving it a 10. His excuse this time? “It didn’t explode enough”. Man, just give it up and say you don’t know Craig. Nobody cares. We’re then reminded of the never-tiring Craig vs James feud that has

bobbled back up to the surface again this year. Always fun. Len tells us all earnestly that whoever wins Strictly has to beat Denise van Outen, like that means anything. They also had to beat Fern Britton Len. And they did. He goes on to say that this doesn’t mean she’s going to win (well no Len, because if she won then she’d have to beat herself which would be an ugly scene indeed) and then Darcey finally cracks and announces that Denise

HAS NO HIPS! WHY DON’T THEY WORK?! She says that there was no hip action in her salsa and her samba, and it was annoying. Oh Darcey, she hasn’t even DONE a samba. I’m sure that would still be true if she had though. (SALSAMBCHA!) Craig agrees that Denise can’t take her own technical superiority for granted, as we all saw just how bad she can be, in that cha-cha she did. If she wants to get into the final, she has to come out and absolutely WOW the judges. Yeah, the public probably are a lost cause at this point. Never mind. Bruno says that he’s worried about her rumba, because it’s basically a slow cha-cha (SALSAMBRUMBCHAMBO!). Denise, from the training room, promises some that she’ll give the judges great technique, and the public something to remember with her rumba.

Oh I know I’LL remember it.


Oh good, an undone bow-tie. I’m on side already! The story appears to be that Denise is throwing a strop after being in the Bottom 2, and James is there to comfort her. All to the strains of a really harsh rendition of “First Time Ever I Saw Your Face”.

I’m sure there’s some way that Denise could have made this more overwrought and ridiculous, but I’m not sure what it is. It’s not so much a rumba as it is too people walking around pulling sad faces and occasionally wiggling their bums, somehow without moving their hips very much at all. I think the point where I have to check out is the

EMOTIONAL ROLL AROUND ON THE FLOOR OF PAIN. Her arms are quite nice and fluid, but her legs occasionally seem a little sharp and jagged, especially in the splits, where she goes down like she’s buffering. I half expect a little revolving “loading” wheel to appear.

As Jordan rumbas go…that wasn’t the best.

It gets a standing ovation

sort of. Elaine Paige is NOT HAVING IT. Once they’re over at the judges, Bruce wants to know if he’s got the story right. “Denise rejected James’ kiss, James begged for more by getting on his knees, then they did a couple of the floors and wound up on the floor watching telly”.

I feel when BRUCE is making fun of your choreography, it might be time to reconsider some thing. BRUCE! Originator of the Velociraptor Dance. Darcey starts for the judges, telling Denise that she has the most stunning arms, with feeling right to her fingertips, and she has throughout the competition from the very beginning. Such beautiful, wonderful, magnificent arms. But crap legs and it was all jagged and passionless.

Len follows, saying that for one couple tonight will be their last chance to dance, and for him, the final wouldn’t be the proper final without Denise in it. Oh bog off Len. Bruno follows up, saying he was deeply moved by her rumba, and that’s never happened before.

What? You mean all those other times…you were faking it? The jumping up and down, the touching yourself in inappropriate places, the grunting orgasmic sex noises? That was all a LIE? I feel so hurt and let down Bruno. I can’t even look at you. He thought it was beautiful, well acted, and perfectly executed. Craig closes by praising her fantastic storytelling but with great extensions and finishing to match. He does however, admit to a desire to lift her skirt up. And yet when LEN SAYS THE SAME THING, HE’S SOMEHOW SEEN AS A PERVE!

Anyway, Craig wanted to lift Denise’s skirt up to see her hips, because he couldn’t see what they were doing, and it looks like they were fading in and out. James cracks that he would have thought that Craig was looking at HIS hip action, because he is a GAY HA HAHAH HA AHA.

A ha ha ha.

Up to the Tessanine they rise, and Denise cackles “YOU’RE SO CHEEKY!” once they’re up there. I see someone patched up the BANTERTRON then. Tess tells her that her acting skills obviously came in handy for selling that rumba, and then asks her how she’d feel being here next week, lifting the glitterball trophy. Nervous maybe? Like the police were about to walk in? For being in Louis’ house? Denise turns to James and says that she just wants to do it for James

for all the hard work he’s put in training her, buoying her up, and throwing giant balls at her injured neck. James for his part would just like to announce that their tango, whilst powerful, was nothing compared to that rumba, which was his favourite dance ever in the history of Strictly. Especially now all of his ones with Hamela are…tainted. Scores are in


Chinbotley Walsh & Pasha Kovalev dancing the Charleston

I think Denise & James and Kimberley & Pasha really should have swapped outfits for their dances. Would have made it even more special. Bruce tells us all that Kimberley & Pasha will be dancing their Charleston to “Those Magnificent Men In Their Flying Machines” and as a result will have an actual PLANE in the studio. How exciting! I’d take a ride on Pasha’s Jumbo any da[JOKE REDACTED].

Judges Holodeck now and Len is still trying to make “Nimble Kimble” happen. Give it up Len, it’s not going to happen. He then goes on to say that he really liked it when Kimberley came up and shook her tits in his face. He gave her an extra mark for that, and he promises that he’ll give an extra mark to every female celebrity to do that from now on. QUICK, SOMEBODY GET WIDDY BACK! (NOT REALLY! NEVER REALLY!) We’re reminded that last week Kimberley scored 40/40 and everyone marvels that she’s just as good in the ballroom dances as she is in the latin stuff. Bruno says that he would have expected her to be good at Latin because of her “hip hoppy” background. I don’t even know where to START with that one.

Len goes on to say that Kimberley has really

ANNOYED HIM, because he saw so much potential there, and she’s only started delivering on it recently. Hey, remember when Len yelled at Kimberley that one week and everyone was OUTRAGED? Feels so long ago now. Craig also, apparently, doesn’t rate her core. For some reason he doesn’t mention her one weakness of the public “hating her” that he spent abut a month going on about after her Bottom 2 appearance. I wonder why. Darcey assures everyone that it’s just Kimberley’s lack of stamina that’s the problem. If she just works on her endurance her

core will get much stronger. Oh so THAT’S what your core is. I thought they were talking about her vagina this WHOLE TIME. Silly me.

We get a brief bit of Kimberley in training next, and it’s revealed that those cartwheels keep on going wrong in the training room as well. You’d wonder why Kimberley didn’t tell Pasha to take them out, but one picture of where her hands go when they mess up

tells a thousand words. ENTIRELY INNOCENT WORDS!


And do you know what, I just can’t. This is the FIFTH WEEK IN A ROW that a Charleston has been at least in the top two on the leaderboard, and I officially have nothing more to say about them. I am CHARLESTONed out. I haven’t had a week off from them since Wembley. Here, in pictoral terms, is Kimberley’s Perfect Charleston Journey. You can write your own words, whichever ones fit best.

Consider it your very own silent movie. Another 40.

Little Lisa From Manchester & Fun Bobby dancing the American Smooth

Bruce grins that he’s so glad that Craig finally found his 10. It’s alright Bruce, I doubt he’ll be needing it again. He goes on to say on Day 1, when she first stepped out onto the dancefloor, Lisa surprised everyone, including him. Just the once though. Since then it’s been grimly predictable.

Within 5 seconds of Judges Holodeck has started, Bruno has called Lisa “larger than life” and a “ray of sunshine”, and Len has called her a “great big bundle of joy”. We must sow our clichés whilst we may, I guess. Bruno recounts for us gleefully the time when Lisa got so excited she started leading Robin around the floor.

I don’t think Darcey likes being touched like that Bruno. She’s not Alesha. She’s not numbed by vodka and counting down the days until she jumps to ITV. Craig then suddenly announces to everyone that they are all to remember Wembley, and Lisa doing the splits.

In a tone that has unfortunate shades of “REMEMBER WHEN RUSSELL CAME OUT OF THAT CANNON!”. I dread to think how they’re going to recreate it in years to come on It Takes Two. That poor hamster.

Len slides in as the voice of reason (ish) by saying that Lisa always has the “wow” but she doesn’t always have the “how”. Her technique is lacking, her footwork isn’t that good, and she really needs to improve her technique if she wants to get to the final. Lisa for her part says that to get to the final would be the icing on the biggest fattest cake she’s ever eaten, and that’s saying something.

Well…the diet starts here I guess.


I loved her partnership with Vincent as well guys, but Louisa Lytton is not coming back. Also, it’s not spelt LOISIA. Honestly, the academic syllabus at Sylvia Young isn’t what it used to be. You used to get LEARNING along with your tits and teeth. Lisa & Robin are performing to “All That Jazz” aka that song from that show with the chair in it. In tribute to the decadent, licentious, downright DIRTY world of Kander & Ebb, Lisa has come

heavily medicated by the looks of it. Even her jazz hands look like they’re being done underwater.

It’s a shame, because Robin’s gone to such great lengths to craft a Goodbye Dance for her. Her name in lights, the big booming triumphalist music, the musical theatre, the broad brush strokes choreography and she’s under-performing it wantonly. I don’t know if it’s because she’s trying to focus on her technique after her “Widdy Moment” but it’s the closest I’ve ever come to being bored in a Lisa routine. At least normally there’s something to laugh at if it isn’t very good.


It gets a standing ovation, and it appears that Bruce is now directing traffic in terms of getting the celebrities to thank the audience as well as LOOK! LOOK! at them. Remember when the entire audience, in unison, got up for Ricky Whittle in his semi-final, in both dances, having barely ever given standing ovations before in the history of the show, after he was summarily rejected two weeks in a row by the public. Remember how spontaneous that felt? And now this.

I’m yearning for the pure and innocent days of Series 7 is what I’m saying.

Bruno starts for the judges, telling that she’s “Lisa with an S! An S FOR FOSSE!”. Thanks Bruno. He goes on to say that in terms of entertainment, Lisa is in a league of her own (they play Saturdays in pub car parks nationwide! Glittery muu-muus for goalposts!) but in terms of technique she still needs to step it up. Her hands are too throwaway and there were quite a few stumbles. Craig follows, saying that he loved all the stylised Fosse stuff and the “ball change kicks” but she needs to watch her free arm, there was occasional gapping, and her timing was occasionally out.

Don’t worry Lisa though, he’ll still let you talk about your LIFE IN DACE to an audience of 35 in Catford whilst Artem & Natalie play the role of her disapproving parents in the background. Her disapproving Australian mum, and her disapproving shirtless dad.

Darcey follows, and says that Lisa is the Next Musical Theatre Star! But that’s a different reality show entirely (judged by Denise van Outen probably). Here’s Lisa’s Winner Face anyway.

Not a patch on La Prenj is she? Darcey tells her that she mirrored Robin perfectly throughout, but in hold, her shoulders were too raised. But that’s her only fault. Honest. She closes by telling Lisa that her dance was very “enjoyable”, except with Darcey’s accent it sounds more like “endurable”. Which is also true.

Len is next, and strap yourselves in, because he’s about to tell Lisa that when she kicked her leg up, he could see her razzle dazzle.

If you look down her throat, you can probably see it from there as well. Everyone laughs at Len’s vaginal humour, and Bruce says they’re clearly Len’s “Fan Club”. Bruno then yells “FANNY CLUB!”

And if he doesn’t win “Best Judge” at the Monkies for that moment alone, then I judge you all very harshly indeed. Especially as Len then queers his pitch by declaring Lisa “The People’s Champion”.

Here’s what we know about Lisa’s Public Vote :

In Week 4, she beat Colin Salmon
In Week 5, she beat Colin Salmon
In Week 6, she beat Kimberley Walsh
In Week 7, she beat Nicky Byrne
In Week 8, she beat Michael Vaughan
In Week 9, she beat Nicky Byrne
In Week 10, she beat Denise Van Outen & Nicky Byrne

That is, quite literally, it. ZOMG PEOPLE’S CHAMPION! The person who the ACTUAL PUBLIC NOT JUST LEN crown the People’s Champion next week will just have to make do with a bitter secondary tin-foil trophy of LIES. We all know Lisa was the true favourite here.

Up to the Tessanine they CHAMP where Tess gins merrily about Lisa’s razzle dazzle

That big huh, Robin? Tess repeats that Lisa is the People’s Champion because she’s made Top 5 without being in a Dance-Off. Like other People’s Champions Alex Jones, Natalie Cassidy, Christine Bleakley and James Martin. All names that will live in Strictly Infamy forever, I’m sure you’ll agree. THEIR NAMES SHOULD BE ON THE GLITTERBALL WALL OF FAME RATHER THAN WHATEVER DUMBASS NON-PEOPLE’S CHAMPIONS WON THEIR SERIES! WUZZROBBED! I DON’T EVEN WANT TO SEE THE JUDGES SCORES, BECAUSE THEY OFFEND ME!





19 thoughts on “Strictly Come Dancing 10 – Week 11 Performance

  1. ooh

    They’ve really made a mess of the Denise Pity Arc. Just as I was starting to feel sorry for her, James piped up with his lectures and then the entire BBC followed him with honking on about how she works so hard and isntaringer and etc etc. It reminds me of classic Simon Cowell “Vote ye for the Chosen One” semifinals.
    Also the structure of the final sounds pitiful. Four couples (so the early show is basically a true semifinal), no new dances, acres of gurning. At least the result isn’t 100% guaranteed.

    1. monkseal Post author

      The sad thing is, you know it’s not going to stop now. They’re going to be finger-wagging at us for not letting Denise win for years to come. After spending the entire series sniggering up their sleeves and calling her a “professional” (*nudge nudge*)

  2. Jenny

    Denise could have had a decent chance of overcoming the curse of ringerdom with any other pro (except Anton, obviously). That rumba was so ridiculous (and the big white pants – she’s got a great figure, but that dress did nothing for her) that I really, really want to see their showdance now.

    Sadly now that Lisa is gone, she’s the only “hate figure” left 😦

    Dear BBC Moles (we know you are here), please can we have an Erin-Cam next series please?

    Strange series overall, a high standard of dancing and a good set of finalists, but I’m generally feeling “whelmed”. Last week watching the show I actually told my boyfriend that I’m only still bothering so I can understand Monkseal’s recaps!

    And blimey eh, four in the final – it’s going to take you ages to write up their stories!!

    1. Poppy

      After seeing the footage of Denise & James’ showdance in ITT this evening, I’m just waiting for the bacofoil to be unwound from around the cardboard tube.

  3. Catherine

    I too thought it was weird that Darcey didn’t have anything to say about Tracy. What’s that about? I don’t think she legit hates her or anything, but she certainly seems underwhelmed by her.

    It’s a bit premature, but I wanted to congratulate you on another fine series! I would have stopped watching this crapfest long ago if it wasn’t for you and your hilarious commentary – the best of what TWoP used to be. So…thanks? I think?

    No, seriously. Thanks.

      1. Bashful82

        Careful – you might end up getting a warning for no apparent reason or the mods have twitchy fingers…….*annoyed at the warning which has been in my profile for 3 years*

        Also, the two guys from The Bot’s group look a bit fit?

  4. Soph (@dexychik)

    Aston from JLS is going to be a judge on Got To Dance this year. Because being able to do a handspring, and pose with a microphone makes a dance MASTER.
    Was Nicole Roberts’ ENTIRE FAMILY there? Much was the ginger in the front row.

  5. Stormy

    For all the times I’ve wanted to crawl through the screen and beat Bruno to death with my shoe, I just can’t vote him as best judge. One fanny joke can’t wipe away a series of shrieking “RUBBISH! RUBBISH!” at Craig every time Craig opened his mouth. I may just have to abstain from it this year, because all the judges made me want to drink heavily this series. Usually Craig at least gives me some hope. Not this year.

  6. Marie


    I like your Strictly Olympians lineup, but feel a little sorry for lovely Laura Trott getting James. I’d put him with Zara Philips (and her with Artem).

    Anyhow I can see you’re hoping for a dream finale of Jess ‘n’ Pash v Ben ‘n’ Nat … Jason and Ola to take the third spot I reckon.

    NOT looking forward to Andy Murray’s rumba though. Undone bow tie guaranteed!

    1. monkseal Post author

      But this way we can have a married couple competing with/against/alongside a dating couple! It’ll be like Logans vs Jordans but EVEN BETTER!

  7. Pops

    Great blog as always, I hadn’t noticed Dame Elaine Paige refusing to join in Denise’s standing ovation. If I had to make a mortal enemy of one Radio 2 DJ, I’d rather it was Chris Evans than Elaine Paige. EP’s ‘interview’ with David Essex on her Sunday afternoon show was mainly her moaning about how they were shamefully passed over for the Broadway production of Evita in favour of Patti LuPone and Saul off Homeland, while David didn’t seem that bothered – the woman can hold a grudge. I’d love her to be on Strictly proper, unless they put her with Anton, in which case I’d stop paying my license fee.
    I was quite glad that the judges brought up Denise’s lack of hip action in the holodeck. As much as I can’t get worked up about her being a dirty ringer, i also think this whole ‘she’s clearly techincally the best dancer, it’s just that the public hate her’ line that’s been pushed recently ignores the fact that her latin hasn’t always been that hot. Some of Denise’s dances have been great, but I’d say Kimberly was probably the better all-rounder.

  8. Poppy

    While watching Lisa’s AS I found myself thinking that Robin was auditioning for Chicago. My mind’s been wandering a lot during this series. Elaine Paige’s bitch face is indeed an amazing thing, although I didn’t recognise her, so as far as I was concerned she was some random woman they’d sat in the front row. But then quite a lot of them seem like that to me. If it wasn’t so heavily signposted I wouldn’t recognise Cheryl Cole either. Or any of the other ones, apart from the redhead, because I remember that Louis Walsh flatly refused to have her in the band, and then the public voted her in just to spite him. That’s all I remember from Popstars: The Rivals.

    Anyway, thanks for another great write up. You manage to make some sort of sense of it all, which is a huge achievement when it’s as…odd…as this series has been.


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