Strictly Come Dancing 12 – Week 3 Performance


As it’s a Theme Week, we start with a comedy montage VT themed around this year’s contestants auditioning for various iconic parts in movies.

Thom must be grateful to be at an audition where he doesn’t have to spend 10 minutes in the gents beforehand giving himself a fluff. (Kelly Brook’s auditioning process is such a trial). Highlights include Steve Backshall as

Geri Halliwell in Spice World : The Movie, this comedy double act for the ages

(seriously, Judy is having more fun here than she is ever going to in the actual show, I feel like there should be an entire segment on It Takes Two devoted to Judy Murray titting around doing comedy VTs) and

Alison Hammond proudly standing there beaming that she is Drew Barrymore in very much the same tone of voice that Nancy used to tell us all that she WAS THE CAPE in her paso doble with Anton.


Lord, even their credits shot looks like it’s been Photoshopped together from two entirely different shoots doesn’t it?

Into the studio we go, with Kevin’s clapperboard heralding the arrival of a pro-routine to celebrate the magic of the movies.The magic of the movies being apparently best heralded by Craig, Len and Bruno all singing “There’s No Business Like Show Business” as loudly as possible. A song originated in the public consciousness by Ethal Merman, and indeed, there’s something very fishy indeed about the performance of these three.

That’s right, it’s that Darcey didn’t join in, the crashing bore. Arlene would have (so long as she could be carried around by hunks) and Alesha would have full on busted out one of her best raps (KEVIN CLIFTON WIV DA BUMP AN FLEX (FROM GRIMSBY)!). Also in attendance is

Donny Osmond, being afforded the sort of big surprise entrance you’d expect from a big name cameo/the reveal of the creature at the end of a horror movie. He’s here to judge, and sing, and spread good cheer throughout the land! So let’s see how that works out…

Of course the whole thing turns into a big tits and teeth kick-line number featuring the entire cast with

varying degrees of enthusiasm from the celebrities involved. It’s also noticable that Janette is dancing around with a

STRANGER. For those of you wondering who it is, it’s probably a Clifton. Zeppo Clifton, coming a pro line-up near you in 2015.


Tess and Claudia emerge on the arms of Aljaz and Tristan and

no, really, is Tess being dressed much better now that Bruce has left? I hate to think that the reason behind her notoriously awful wardrobe for the last decade has been because the budget has been being blown on Bruce’s M & S Signature collection wear, but it may well be the case.

Tess explains to us that tonight’s designated theme is Movie Week, aka Musicals Week With Even Worse Costumes. All 14 celebrities will be performing to iconic songs from iconic films and you will be singing Under The Sea in your head for the next week yes you will. She also asks us for a moment of sympathy and regret for the departure of Gregg Wallace (lol) and this gives Noted Celebrity Bisexual Duncan James a chance to audition for an iconic roll of his own

Jar Jar Binks.

Once the stars of our show are out, Tess explains to us all why Donny Osmond is here. He’s had a musical career spannning five decades, he’s appeared in many to Broadway shows, he’s a past winner of Dancing With The Stars and also “Puppy Love” was the first record Evil Moira Ross In A Rainbow Wig (our esteemed producer) ever bought and she LOVES HIM SO MUCH OH MY GOD DONNY YOU’VE STILL GOT IT SQUUUUUUUUUUUUUUEAL. (I should say before the next 10,000 words (or whatever) of negativity that I really liked Donny on Dancing With The Stars and wanted him to win and in fact like him generally, so you know, no posting shit through my letterbox please Donny’s Angels).

Ren & Ariel dancing the jive

Tess tells us all that this week is great for Alison because normally she just gets to interview film stars, but this week she gets to BE one. Yes Tess, but the film star in question is Lori Singer, whose only screen-credits in the last decade have been an episode of Law & Order : Sexy Victims Unit and a role in a short film entitled “Little Victim”. I think fetching Holly Willoughby’s sandwiches is probable more glamorous than that.

VT now, and Alison tells us that she really enjoyed last week’s foxtrot because it was really character driven and she loved playing the boss (/riding Aljaz’s crotch round the floor like Lewis Hamilton drives a Mercedes). She was a bit disappointed by her scores, but she’s happy that she got above 5. Given that Len and Bruno wouldn’t go below 5 unless you literally hid the paddles under cement and even then they’d probably just wave around thin air in protest, you should probably be aiming higher Alison. SCOTT MILLS has got above a 5, it’s not hard.

In training, Alison tells us that she’s dancing a jive to “Footloose” from the movie, which is also called “Footloose”. That Alison is not playing Mama Morton this week is the greatest travesty of all, I don’t even care if none of her songs fit any of the genres danced on this show. I WANT TO SEE ALISON HAMMOND LOCK ALJAZ UP IN HER FILTHY CLINK, DAMNIT. Anyway, Alison gushes that Footloose is all about people who love dancing, which is JUST LIKE HER. This is illustrated with a shot of Alison “loving dancing” so much that she starts to resemble

a dog sticking its head out the car window. That’s also the face she had on whilst interviewing George Clooney by the way.

She says that Strictly Come Dancing has inspired her so much that she’s started dancing everywhere – in the kitchen, in the park, “doing the weekly shop”

and no offence to Alison but if you expect me to believe she does her weekly shop with a basket then… Aljaz says slightly wearily that it’s great that Alison loves to dance, but it’d be great if she occasionally stopped. Oh Aljaz don’t worry, she does. It’s very hard to watch someone sleeping through their bedroom window if you’re doing the cha cha at the same time. Believe me I’ve tried. The climb up Pasha’s Fire Escape leaves me too exhausted for dancing as it is…


I love that two series in a row now Aljaz has choreographed his jives to be mostly sitting down. He’s the only pro I know who uses the dance as a Rest Week. The point I guess is to mirror the point in the film where the DAHNCE slowly overtakes the kids despite the wicked rotten rules laid down by John Lithgow but the lasting effect of all the balloons and Aljaz and Alison’s feet tip-toeing just off the floor bring to mind more the movie Up. Although as ever Aljaz’s attempts to play a sexually awkward geek are


Once the dancing gets going, Alison gives it a good go but, despite what people have been saying about Latin being “her thing” I don’t think she’s got the energy to do a routine this high tempo. Fair play to her, she manages to get

more air off her high kicks than I ever could, but the whole thing is very very stompy and manic and by the end she’s whole bars behind Aljaz, let alone beats. Alison as a whole definitely suits sassy rather than outright showbiz.

They do still make a lovely couple though.

Once they’re over at the judges Tess prompts Len to start for the judges, with him saying that it was all very FOOTLOOSE and in fact loose in general, which causes two whole people to boo and Len to then

lose his rag again. I swear there were rulers of 14th century caliphates who took dissent better than Len. Fortunately for Alison Len still thinks she CAHM AHT AND GIVE IT SUM AND WHERES ME WASHBOARD MY SON GORRRRRRRRRN. From the audience

Ruth’s just so glad to be out of the house and away from Eamon that she applauds rapturously. Unless that’s him in drag next to her in which case…he makes for a prettier woman than I thought he would. Bruno follows up Len by saying that he doesn’t see anything wrong with a loose woman from time to time, and Aljaz shakes his head vigorously. I guess if that’s the sort of thing Aljaz had a problem with he wouldn’t currently be dating a woman who apparently worked her way through the cast of Burn The Floor like diarrhoea through a coach party of middle-aged sightseers to Turkey. Anyway, Bruno liked the fun, but thought Alison was a little wild and sloppy technically.

Craig follows, saying that Alison needed more precision in her legs and more specificity to her movement generally, and Darcey tells her that she knows she’s improving generally but this really wasn’t her dance. Alison guffaws that she almost had a heart attack halfway through (possibly somewhere around the point where she had to stand up). Donny closes by yelling “HELLO ALISON, HOW ARE YOU BABY?” and Alison giggling “Hi Donny, have you got my 10 ready?”

I think maybe if Donny had only been allowed to talk to Alison all evening we would have been fine.

Up to Claud 9 they scoot, with Alison picking up a

bucket of popcorn on the way. Of course she wouldn’t be allowed to eat the popcorn before her dance, because there’s every chance she’d wind up exerting herself too much and choking on a kernel (just ask Kristina). Claudia congratulates her on starting the show and impressing Donny Osmond, that stern taskmaster. Alison says that she’s just going to sit back, relax, and enjoy the rest of the show now. Aljaz says that he’s really really proud of her, and Claudia goes on to tell us that, as there are five judges tonight, all scores will be out of 50. Not if I’m doing the adding up they’re not.


King Louis And A Banana dancing the quickstep

Given that this is a long show, I’m just going to skip Tess if she doesn’t say anything I can work with. And given that all she’s giving me for Steve is a half-arsed pun about “monkeying around”…

In his VT, Steve tells us that he knew that his cha cha was going to be a pile of pish, but he gave it everything he could. Right into Ian Beale’s face. We’re reminded that Craig said it reminded him of going into a dodgy club in Soho. Oh Craig. I know drag queen technology has advanced over the years but no amount of breastplates are going to give any guy boobs like Ola’s. Steve closes by saying that he was having such a good time that he forgot where he was or what he was doing. An excuse given by many straight men to their wives after an evening out in a dodgy club in Soho.

Training now, and Steve tells us that this week he’s doing the quickstep, and the theme will be The Jungle Book. He and Ola are going to be playing primitive chimps rampaging around out of control brutishly and causing chaos.

For inspiration, Steve is thinking back to his years spent in the jungle researching wildlife. Ola is thinking back to watching her husband on Celebrity Big Brother. Steve however decides that this research isn’t authentic enough (even in an era when BBC nature documentaries are basically all “this is what we’re going to pretend dinosaurs were like to create a narrative for 60 minutes of docubollocks”) so he’s going to to take her to the zoo.

He says he’s there to show her lemurs which are “sort of like monkeys”. Wow, educational. Ola’s day

doesn’t really ever pick up.


WHEEEE! Steve is dancing/pretending to be a monkey to “I Wanna Be Like You”

dressed up as a leopard. And in trousers so tight you can almost see his rattlesnake. I guess as an animal expert you want to cram as many animals in there as possible. As a dance it’s very charming and fun and light, and the jazzy brassy music and the monkey stylings both serve lift the whole thing, as do

Ola’s constant “wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!” faces, although he’s really very loose in hold

and there’s an extended Charleston section in the middle that does go on a bit too long. As does the bit at the end where Steve

grips his banana and screams like a chimp. Save it for your inevitable post-series Attitude photoshoot mate.

They waddle over to Tess, who sighs that Steve definitely has the stamina for a quickstep and grips his guns. Steve protests lightly that he is PUFFED OUT.

Never mind Bruno (what? with Bruce gone someone has to make mildly homophobic jokes about the judges leave me alone). Bruno calls Steve his King Of The Jungle and praises him for his speed and energy. He saw three mistakes (four if you count sticking Ola in yellow zebra-print) but other than that it was brilliant. Craig follows by saying that Steve is now BACK IN THE COMPETITION

although obviously he still has stuff to say about hands because it’s CRAIG, when doesn’t he? He does say that he’s not looking forward to Steve’s Charleston, based on all the Charleston in the routine. Between this and his paso arms halfway through the tango I’m starting to think Ola is taking a leaf out of The X Factor and introducing adverts of products we might like to buy in future into the middle of Steve’s part of the show. Clever girl. Beats Widdy squealing “I’M DOING A ZOLZA NEXT WEEK LOL!” after every dance anyway.

Darcey’s next, dribbling over Steve’s arms (think on the fact they’ve found a way to show off his muscles in a quickstep thanks a lot Movie Week) and saying how FAST and ENERGETIC he was, and Donny follows on saying that it was all a bit stiff and awkward and he thinks Ola needs to take Steve clubbing to loosen him up.

Ola looks like she’ll get right on that.

Up to Claud 9 they swing where I’m already amused that despite their best efforts to make Kevin look like one of the rough tough Sharks from West Side Story

he resembles more closely Daniel Whiston from Dancing On Ice. Claudia grins that Steve’s parents are in tonight and Steve gamely jokes that they were probably watching the whole dance from behind their fingers

going “nooooooooooooooo!”. Oh hun, if they were embarrassed by that just think of how they’re going to react to the horrors that are about to follow. He goes on to say that that was the most fun dance he’s done so far, and Claudia asks Ola if she’s going to now take Steve clubbing. Ola’s reply is as close to “well apparently I have to now” as you can get without sounding rude about it. Scores are in


Donna Sheridan & Sam Carmichael dancing the foxtrot

Tess introduces them by saying that they will be dancing to the title track from “Mamma Mia!” which she calls a “film with a complicated plot”. Oh Tess…I get the feeling she sometimes has to turn back to the start of a colouring-in book because she’s lost the thread.

In her VT, Jennifer tells us that she was really looking forward to her waltz last week, but when she went out onto the floor she made a mistake and it threw her off. Tristan sympathises that it’s awful when that happens, and Jennifer sadly says that she agreed with Craig’s comments about how bad she was, but at least being in the dance-off gave her the chance to do the routine again and get it right (/righter).

Training now, and we open with Tristan asking Jennifer how she’s feeling.

I will say this, as much as I’m really beginning to question Tristan as a pro on this show, I would personally quite happily be stuck with him in a doomed same-sex-seleb partnership that goes out in wk 2 in a hail of controversy and pearl clutching from The Daily Express if it meant that he even once asked me how I was feeling. Sigh. Anyway, it turns out that Jennifer is all ready to put last week’s nightmare behind her and carry on smoothly to an ABBA foxtrot.

Sadly though, this is one of those weeks where Jennifer is really busy filming Mrs Brown’s Boys, so Tristan has to go up to Scotland to fit in practice around her rehearsals. Jennifer says that the plot of Mamma Mia is really very much like the plot of Mrs Browns Boys, except without the joys of a perimenopausal Julie Walters sprinting around trying to seduce everything with a pulse. If it did I might watch it. Although even then… In Scotland Tristan meets the cast of Mrs Brown’s Boy, apart from Mrs Brown herself who pops up via VT all

“I heartily endorse this dancer or product, Tristram MacManaman is now very much in the heart of my family”.


Jennifer is busy watering her shrub when she sees Tristan approaching, gripping his oars

and from there it’s all kind of a shambles.

Honestly, it’s really hard to tell it’s supposed to be a foxtrot. It looks a bit like some of Artem’s pateneted waftography, but instead of being performed by a stage-school ringah who could do contemporary waftage better than half the pros could, it’s being done by…well…Jennifer Gibney. It looks really under-rehearsed, there’s a whole lot of stuff being done out of hold, the foxtrot that’s done is pretty much “spend 6 seconds going in a straight line then break hold” three or four times, and when your routine starts with your pro having to physically turn you round 180 degrees because you’re facing the wrong way and doesn’t really improve from there it might be time just to give up and go home. I will give her this though, if it’s on purpose she’s doing a killer impersonation of Meryl Sreep’s awfulmazing



Once they’re over at Tess, she beams at Jennifer that she loved how Jennifer was singing along the whole way through. I wouldn’t be drawing attention to that Tess, especially as Craig is about to start and he hates that sort of thing. Spontaneous displays of affection have always upset and confused him unless they’re expressed via the medium of jazz handage.

Yeah, no he wasn’t here for that. And also thought the whole thing lacked grace and style. To this Tess replies with the 8 words nobody ever wants to hear : “Darcey, lighten the mood would you my darling?”. Darcey tries, by pretending to be impressed that Jennifer could mime all the way through a song, because she’s never seen that before. Obviously she’s as zoned out during the Results Show as she seems every week then.

Donny follows, saying that the routine really wasn’t risky, edgy, and different enough for him. It was all a little trad and safe.

He says to the woman wearing dunagrees over a ballroom gown dancing foxtrot 85% out of hold to an ABBA song. Len closes by saying that Jennifer looked really relaxed and confident but she needs to lift her ribcage up, drop her shoulders, and stop holding her breath when she’s in hold. I do love that the one time Len bothers to give technical ballroom critique that might be helpful it’s to the woman who’s about to leave the show. Bruno closes by saying, in the nicest possible way, that it didn’t look like a foxtrot, she was trying too hard to be Meryl Streep, and she danced like she was plastered on ouzo.

Other than that though, well done on being so relaxed.

Up to Claud 9 they hike, where Claudia asks Jennifer if she really enjoyed the dance, and she replies by saying that she loved it, and that it was great craic (that Tristan was on when he choreographed it). Scores are in


Maverick & Charlie dancing the rumba

Calm down Simon! I know you’re hungry but there’s popcorn waiting for you at the end! Because there’s not enough filler going on (we already had to skip Len’s comments for Steve’s quickstep) we now have Darcey explain to us what you have to do in a rumba to make it good.

Apparently the man has to pursue the lady right up until the very end of the dance, with sensual feelings and plenty of caressing of the floor. I have to say, many times at Yates Wine Lodge of a Friday night have I seen a man pursue a woman and end up sensually caressing the floor. Wasn’t a rumba though. Mostly.

In his VT, Simon tells us that the tango last week was totally out of his comfort zone. He says he understands what Bruno said when he told Simon that he wanted to see the animal in him (oh Simon, we all worked out what that meant it wasn’t subtle, the only surprise was Bruno being a top) but he was personally more worried about getting the steps right. Well LAH DI DAH. You wouldn’t get anywhere on this show with that attitude Simon.

Training now, and Simon tells us that he will be doing the rumba to “Take My Breath Away” from Top Gun. Kristina tells him that it’s very different from the jive – it’s slow, romantic, and the DANCE OF LOVE

AND ME, KRISTINA RIHANOFF, IN MY PANTS RORWWWR! She tells Simon that it’s important that he show Bruno his animalistic side like he suggested. It might be the difference between him scoring him a 7 and him scoring him a 7 but shouting “BANG BANG SEXY SIMON’S SEXY HIPS OF SEX BANG BANG JESSIE J BANG BANG!” whilst he does it. Simon thinks the best way of doing this will be to

go out on the pull with the rest of Blue. If you’re wondering where the other two are, Anthony’s off pissing on an ATM and Lee’s in the toilets shagging a promo girl.

In a twist of fate,

A WILD KRISTINA APPEARS, but she ends up going home with Simon’s wing-man Duncan because she’s always up for a Goose.


Simon and Kristina are dancing their rumba to “Take My Breath Away” which as I said in the summary will always remind me of Julian Clary’s “An Officer And An Erin” showdance always. Kristina

can come out having forgot to put her trousers on all she likes, it will never erase the memory. Actually that shirt serves a practical purpose beyond suggesting nudey-nakedness – Kristina flails and twirls around with it so much, directly between Simon and the cameraline, such that it’s quite hard to see any of what he’s doing. Which is probably a good thing given that what he’s doing really looks exceptionally BLOKE-RUMBAish. He’s not really got a constant flow of movement and his arms are kind of flipperish. Also he and Kristina don’t really have a lot of sexual chemistry, as hard as she’s trying.

And she is trying very very hard.

There is no end-pose.

Just an end “shuffling off”. Which I guess is what this dance deserved.

I guess at least Duncan liked it. He’s certainly the only one giving it a Standing Ovation.

Darcey starts for the judges, saying that she really appreciated how much care and attention he was giving to Kristina, but it would have been great if he could have focused on him as well. I’m sure she could direct the same instructions to the cameramen. Lord knows it can be hard to keep your wits about you during a Kristina eye-fucking but some of us are here for the celebs as well as the pros. She tells Kristina to try increase Simon’s self-confidence. I’m…not entirely sure that’s the problem here Darce. Tess next asks Donny to tell us all, from his own personal experience, how difficult rumba is for men, like we haven’t heard that enough for one lifetime. Donny agrees that it’s SO SO DIFFICULT. He didn’t like Simon’s hips or how he occasionally broke character but he did really enjoy

when Kristina went down and he grabbed her thighs. A bit too much.

Len follows saying that he finds Simon really frustrating because he has so much potential to CAHM AHT and he isn’t doing it. He saw heel leads, the hips weren’t moving and it was all too measured. He then follows with I think the most purely bitchy thing Len has ever said on this show ever :

“You need to look back at what you’re doing, and then come back and do something else”.

MEOW! (And probably not the first time a man’s faced abuse about his life choices with a bit of Kristina’s hair dangling from his chin). Bruno follows by saying that he thinks Simon is presenting the dance rather than participating in it – it all feels a bit shallow and meaningless to him. Nothing wrong with a bit of shallow and meaningless rumba’ing once in a while Bruno, trust me. Craig closes by saying that the whole thing was cold and passionless.


Up to Claud 9 they swish, where Claudia immediately orders Simon to try to hug Kristina out of the rage-spiral she always has a tendency to enter into in moments such as these.

Feel the warmth. Scores are in


Fanny Brice & Nick Arnstein dancing the quickstep

In her VT, Judy says that she’s really disappointed that she didn’t perform better in her cha cha, and she was gobsmacked that the public chose to save her. You and me both Judy, but let’s not question it now. Onwards downwards!

In training, Judy tells us that she’ll be dancing a Quickstep to “Don’t Rain On My Parade” from Funny Girl. This is a source of crisis for her as she tells Anton, in a scene featuring truly Made In Chelsea levels of acting ability, that she

doesn’t really “do” glamour, being a down-to-earth working mum and sports professional. Anton has the answer to this though. A weekend in a Forte Travelodge will do the trick to bring out Judy’s glamorous side, MARVELLOUS! It also appears to be the excuse for a lot of

Judy Murray sexual shenanigans, as Anton walks in on her wearing only a towel. He tells her that it’s time for her to ditch the drab look and put on a full ballgown and high-heels, to which Judy protests that she’s really rather just do the quickstep in her trainers instead. What follows is the greatest forced makeover since She’s All That, as Judy goes from this :

to this :

Judy’s response to this makeover? “I feel…………sparkly”. It’s hard to quite capture the magic of her delivery, but if you were wondering why people are voting to keep her in then the essence of it would be buried within it.


It really is a joy to watch Judy in Movie Week, as I don’t think I’ve ever seen on this show, or at least not in a long time, someone with such little performance skills and also with no real interest in trying to hide it. Her face does nothing other than the same benignly terrified grin the whole way through, her responses to the phrasings and timings of the music are mechanical in the extreme, her arms turn on and off like they’re being operated by a lightswitch, she wears the dress she’s got on like a sullen bridesmaid with no inate understanding of how to make it move flatteringly about her body and her bodily response to being in a lift is just

divine. There’s something so dogged about Judy’s absolute refusal to look like a dancer in any way that I find sort of charming. There’s an effortlessness to her hopelessness. You could try and try and try and try to suck at dancing for years and still not be as hopeless as Judy is just like breathing. At the end she HURLS HERSELF around Anton’s throat, her little legs cycling in the air, clearly so so proud of herself and having genuinely loved every second. My favourite part is probably Thom up on Claud 9

looking around frantically for Iveta, all Thombot not compute, dance was bad, why is tiny squealing Caledonian human so pleased with herself? Maybe my professional dance maintenance operative can explain.

Once she’s off her post-dance high, Judy walks to Tess, who turns to Donny and asks for his advice given that he got such great scores for the quickstep and loved it so much. Donny immediately replies by saying that he hates the quickstep and got his worst scores for it (he didn’t incidentally – he got worse scores for foxtrot, tango, and I’m sure you will be surprised to discover, rumba). He likes Judy, but he was worried that Judy was going to burst out crying at any point. He tells Judy that dancing really is a 50-50 proposition, and it really felt like Anton was leading her for the whole dance. Oy vey. Anton points out that that kind of is his job as the male professional, as Craig actually smirks to someone off camera, all “what an idiot”. Donny then ploughs on regardless, telling Anton that it all felt a little under-rehearsed to him.

Rare is it that something crack Anton’s “HA HA MARVELOUS!” facade but I genuinely think he would strangle Donny here and now if he could get away with it.

Len tries to save us all by just yelling names of movies (SATURDAY NIGHT FEVER! MISSION IMPOSSIBLE! THE ADVENTURES OF BUCKAROO BANZAI ACROSS THE EIGHTH DIMENSION!) in lieu of criticism and saying that he liked Judy’s fish-tail. As did Anton last week by the looks of it.

Bruno follows by saying that he sympathises with Judy, but as soon as she puts a foot wrong she goes as rigid as Nelson’s Column.

Yes, I think Anton had that problem with Fiona in her cha cha last year as well. She needs to loosen up a it, and develop more control over her body. He tells her that Anton can’t do the whole dance for her and Anton’s all “you watch me”. Craig whinges about the illegal lift at the end next, and then Darcey finishes by telling Judy that she looks like a glamorous film-star and she really loved her beautiful smile. Meaningful critique as ever.

Up to Claud 9 they go, with Judy declining the offer of popcorn on the way up. For those keeping a spreadsheet going, she and Steve are the only ones to decline the offer so far. Judy says that she really enjoyed it, but based on the comments she seems to be getting worse. I wouldn’t worry Judy, you, Alison Simon and Jennifer by my count are all on the same precipitous scripted decline. Just enjoy the wind rushing past your face as you go. Claudia asks her if she’d like to say anything to the people who voted for her, and Judy asks if they could maybe do it again please. Bless. Scores are in


Sally Bowles & The MC dancing the Charleston

Tess tells us that Tim will be dancing to Money from Cabaret which means that if he doesn’t do well, he can always bribe the judges to give him high scores. Does Tess think that the contestants literally get whatever’s in the title of their song? Does she think Alison’s foot will now actually fall off? Is Frankie Bridge going to be elected as the first Female President Of The USA after tonight? Will Scott Mills drown, and if he did, will people still keep on voting for him anyway? This show hasn’t had a bloated waterlogged corpse win this show since Dar[PUNCHLINE REDACTED FOR BEING TOO MEAN]

In his VT Tim tells us that last week’s waltz felt like he was dancing on thin ice. That would have been one way to improve that show, yes (SO LONG, RAY QUINN). He feels that the routine ultimately went well though, and he was really pleased with the performance he gave. Natalie reminds us that when they were revealed to be safe at the end of the show she actually jumped up and down. She misses out the part where she squealed like there was a 50% Off sale at Swarovskis.

In training, Natalie tells Tim that they will be Charleston’ing to “Money Money Money” from Cabaret and that there will be lots of props and “lots of moments”, whatever that means.

Hopefully they all involve winking somehow. To guide Tim through these moments, and the rigours of the gurny gurny Charleston Natalie has brought in an acting coach why not.

Oh…that’s why not. Neither Natalie nor Tim strike me as the sort of people who need encouragement to pull giant outlandish gurning faces when required to, but if Evil Moira Ross In A Rainbow Wig wants an acting coach in a VT, then I guess that’s what has to happen.


Every time I hear they’re doing a dance to a song from Cabaret I get excited, then I remember what actually happens. Natalie as Liza is admittedly a slightly better fit than Erin was. Honestly I would give good money to see Nat doing “Maybe This Time” at Lucky Voice with a couple of tinnys down her. Tim on the other hand

resembles The Penguin a bit more than the sleek sinister lines of Joel Grey. Really looking at it I think the time spent on an acting coach could have been better spent getting the choreography down because I don’t think he knows it, at all. There’s a lot of looking at what Natalie’s doing and following half-a-beat later, like someone trying to learn a Steps routine off their big sister. Also this

is actively nightmarish and shouldn’t have happened once, let alone twice. Tim’s giving good seedy underworld figure but that’s about it for this dance.

Natalie yells “WELL DONE!” right at him a couple of times as they go over to the judges, which is how you would have known that went badly, if you didn’t have functioning eyes throughout, for whatever reason. Len starts

feiging a headache. Either that or his eyebrow glue’s come loose again. He tells Tim that he “puts the boy in flamboyant” which a) doesn’t make sense and b) he’s used before (about Richard Arnold? I really can’t be faffed to check). Regardless he just wants to see Tim Paso Doble next week, so he’ll let him off that mess. There then follows this exchange between Tim and Natalie :

Natalie : “WELL OI LOVED IT!”
Tim *vaguely baffled at Len’s empty critique* “…what actually was the matter with it?”
Natalie : “I DUNNO!”

Bruno follows saying that Tim invested everything into the character and lost the technique. Natalie bellows “BUT IT’S MOVIE WEEK!” right at him. I love her so much. I like to think she spent the whole week beforehand just bellowing “BUT IT’S MOVIE WEEK!” at anyone who tried to tell her that she couldn’t do something. Craig is next and doles out his first “disahhhhhhhhhhhhhster” of the series, but by this point Natalie is NOT HAVING IT. There was a PROP ISSUE with the jewellery which was HER FAULT and that PUT HIM OFF. She then starts patting Tim

furiously on the shoulder like someone’s over-protective mum. I would ponder on what possibly could have gone awry with her rummaging around in Tim’s pocket that might have caused things to go awry but… let’s not, eh? Darcey follows by saying that if nothing else it was fun to watch (Natalie : “THANK YOU!”). Donny closes by saying that it was really more of a comedy routine than a Charleston (you know, unlike the PROPER Charleston which is dead dramatic an that) and also he’d like to take the prop jewellery home for his wife. Such a romantic.

As they go up to Claud 9 Natalie actually starts telling the audience off for not applauding Tim enough and then loudly snorts “WELL THEY’RE A BORING LOT!” to Tim. She then pulls

this face, right at Claudia and loudly announces again that if you didn’t enjoy that dance you must be SOOOOOOOOOOOO BORING. Natalie seriously is 80% of the way here to becoming a Channel 5 Big Brother contestant. If she was phrasing it as “BORE OFF!” then we’d be all the way. Claudia then points out to Natalie that her parents are here, possibly to stop her being so aggro.

I have no idea how those genetics work out, but ok. Scores are in

17. Natalie then spends the rest of the segment basically wishing death on Craig and everyone he’s ever met.

Grace Stamper & A.J. Frost dancing the rumba

Yes, those are names the movie Armageddon tried to pass off as belonging to actual humans, why do you ask? Anyway Claudia throws popcorn at Tess’ tits and

the inevitable happens. God bless Claudia.

In her VT, Caroline beams happily that she’s SO PLEASED AND EXCITED with how her tango went last week. Honestly at this point I was beginning to forget that this show occasionally includes people who can actually dance well so the sudden REMINDER via footage of Caroline’s tango almost knocks me backwards over the back of my sofa. She says that she was telling Pasha all week “Pasha, this is REALLY HARD”. Yeah, you wish love. She then says that she’s doubly excited for this week, as she’ll be dancing to a GREAT SONG. No.

In training, Pasha tells us that this week they will be dancing to “I Don’t Want To Miss A Thing” from Armageddon. (*develops nervous twitch*). He tells Caroline to get into character by thinking of him as a spaceman. Well after the last hour of performances the studio should be nicely devoid of atmosphere anyway… Caroline, giving it some with all her years of Xtra Factor acting experience is all


“ONLY WITH A MUCH LOWER BUDGET!”. This VT features Pasha acting so you know it’s good (apparently in space you have to whisper?). Needless to say it all ends with Caroline screaming “NO PASHA, I LOVE YOU, I NEED YOU!” at him because of course it does. I have to say that I personally couldn’t possibly imagine myself in this scenario with Pasha at all – if I was sending up my rocket with him on it, it wouldn’t be to prevent asteroids from colliding with my [FOR THE LOVE OF GOD END THIS SENTENCE NOW, NOBODY WANTS TO HEAR THIS).


So obviously Caroline’s been a reasonably good dancer until now, but this is actually the first dance where I’ve found her interesting mostly because she is crazy overacting it and it is amazing.

I’ve never seen anyone work a power ballad fist-clench into a rumba before. Not even BRENDAN has tried going there. Maybe some good can come of Aerosmith after all. Also, yes, it doesn’t hurt that Pasha has got his shirt undone and is wearing

spray-on trousers either, I’m only human. I think the routine would have been better only being ornamented by one moment where she stands on the spot being artfully spun round like an ice-skater/a prize on Wheel Of Fortune, but she is very good at it so I don’t begrudge her. It all ends with Pasha

walking off onto the moon or something I dunno I’ve only seen Armageddon half of once.

It gets a Standing Ovation and also Donny yelling “YEAH BABY!” repeatedly. Fun Fact : Austin Power is the only film that Donny Osmond has ever seen. Tess gives Donny time to calm down and starts with Bruno for the judges (think on that sentence for a little bit). He calls her a “generator of body heat” but notes that he noticed her stumble a little in one section. Probably a holdover from training when she kept on accidentally stumbling and falling on Pasha’s Sputnik. Craig follows, saying that it was all a bit punchy for his own personal rumba tastes, and her transitions could have been a little smoother but otherwise he loved it. Darcey loved the passion and commitment and…oh alright Donny, get it out of your system. He yells “YEAH BABY!” again and tells Caroline that he forgot which one out of her and Pasha was the celebrity and which was the pro. I mean…it’d be more of a compliment if he hadn’t about 20 minutes ago forgotten who was supposed to lead and who was supposed to follow but ok. Len closes by saying that even though she was dancing to a song from ARMAGEDDON which is about THE END OF THE WORLD, tonight certainly won’t be the END OF CAROLINE’S WORLD on Strictly. But she needed more hip action. Thanks Len.

Tess sends them off up to the “Clauditorium”, a term coined on our sister-blog (sister being used entirely in an Alabama sense here), where Pasha immediately

takes custody of the popcorn. Caroline gushes about all the emotions she was feeling during that dance, and then tells us all that “I Doe Wanna Mishatheheng” is her favourite song of all time. You can go off a person. Scores are in


Sebastian & Ariel dancing the samba


Tess tells us all that Scott has been savaged by the judges but he’ll surely be safe UNDER THE SEA, right? The band play the Jaws theme tune over a slow panning out to Craig, but someone’s neglected to realise that the first couple of bars of the Jaws theme tune played out of context kind of sound like a rusty old toilet failing to flush, so it looks a bit like Craig’s taken advantage of some…under the desk facilities. And now, seven hours into a three day show, who can blame him?

VT now, and Scott says that the general gist he’s got from people’s comments is that his tango was better than his cha cha. And Spiderman 3 was better than X-Men 3 Scott…it’s all a matter of context. Scott also recalls how Joanne was really confused last week about whether she and Scott had been put through to this week because she doesn’t quite grasp how the concept of the show works. I’m saying nothing.

Training now, and Scott reminds us all that he’s doing this series’ very first samba, to Under The Sea. Joanne says that Scott’s really struggling with the concept of being a crab, so let’s go and see some in their natural habitat!

Oh no wait, let’s call in David Hasselhoff instead. This is all part of Scott’s ongoing VT theme which is apparently him showing off that he knows other famous people. Anyway, the joke, as it always is, is that David Hasselhoff is a delusional old loser who lives in a trailer park and occasionally breaks into the slow-motion Baywatch run for no reason. I would roll my eyes at the predictability of it all but the slo-motion Baywatch run never fails to make me crack up so…

tee hee hee. Oh and also Joanne frantically mugs about how David was first boot on Dancing With The Stars which is actually the only Dancing With The Stars fact to be correct in either episode this week, so I’ll include it for probity’s sake.


So the idea of “Under The Sea” is that the human world is a bizarre and grinding place and really we’d all be much better off living in a magical imaginary calypso kingdom of talking fish. And on the basis of this routine, sign me up. Scott is dressed up as a fibrous tumour in sunburnt blackface and is using his “claws” as a dramatical excuse to just stick his arms out at all times. Most of the bounce action is coming from his head, which is lolling around like it’s been attached with spaghetti veins and the less said about his attempts at a shimmy

the better. Everything’s very bobbly and murky and indefinite and I guess if the aim was to make the whole thing feel like it was being danced underwater than mission accomplished because it looks a bit like Scott’s dived down for a brick in his pyjamas and can’t find it.


After they make it to the judges Tess tries to trump up some sort of wardrobe malfunction but it just turns out that one of Scott’s claws almost fell off. Pfft. Give me nipple or give me death. Craig starts for the judges saying that the whole routine was like a lobster on acid. I’ve got a feeling that the reality of that would be less entertaining than it sounds. Also ANIMAL IMAGERY KLAXON. Darcey follows saying that there was plenty of bounce but it wasn’t Double Bounce (With Added Freshness) and the whole thing was a bit ploddy. She praises Joanne for giving Scott lots of dance content, but she doesn’t think that any of it really looked like the samba.

Donny’s next and he yells that he loved it but he doesn’t know why! Ideally placed to be a judge then. Tess gushes that Donny is so lovely and that she’d like him to come back and judge every week. Mmm hmmm. Len is next and says the technique was fishy and he’s seen more life in a kipper. Just think of the whole wide world of fish puns available, and coming up with that. Bruno closes by snorting that the crab is obviously “off-menu” and that Scott is allergic to shellfish, but also he’s improving and he needs to think of Esther Williams. Say what you will about Bruno but his judging is always full of…erm…content.

Up to Claud 9 they scuttle, where Claudia asks Scott if he heard her screaming. To be honest, I’d be surprised if he couldn’t hear me screaming. Scott beams that he had loads of fun, and Claudia asks him how she can achieve the flawless shade of burnt sienna that Wardrobe have given him because she wants in.

Given wardrobe’s attempts to make you over in Week 1 Clauds, I’d stay away. They’d probably chuck Joanne’s wig and seashell bra on you as well. Scores are in


Anita & Bernardo dancing the paso doble

Tess tells us that West Side Story is the tale of a girl falling in love with a man on the mean streets of New York. Or in this case, Grimsby. Because KEVIN IS FROM GRIMSBY. Although given the last routine and the fact that Joanne is ALSO FROM GRIMSBY…the true identity of the lost city of Atlantis just got a lot more mundane.

In her VT, Frankie tells us all that she was surprised that she had the energy to get through the whole routine, and Kevin reveals that something went terribly wrong in their final lift when he got distracted by having a lady’s skirt in his face.

Like this. I’m surprised that isn’t a position that he and Karen work into their regular rotation to be honest. Anyway, he had to improvise, and he thought it looked fine, but the judges marked them down for it anyway, DAMN THEM. Frankie closes by saying that she was glad to be high up, but not right at the top of the leaderboard because it keeps the pressure off her. Oh well…

Training now and

how sadly I long for the days when Erin was still here and this would have been a trap. Instead Kevin wants to train with Frankie up on the roof, because that’s where the scene from the movie they’re recreating takes place. I notice he didn’t spring for the trip to New York that would have guaranteed full authenticity, the cheap Grimsby bastard. Anyway, there’s some LOLs as Frankie trudges up 20 flights of stairs only to be told that there’s a lift

WAH WAH WAH WAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH. (I know The Saturdays aren’t exactly a brains trust but…I’m sure she knows which way a roof is guys…) Frankie really enjoys rehearsing up on the roof, hooray, end VT.


Before the music even starts

that skirt is OUT and it is READY TO SWISH.

With the swish being maintained by Kevin when her

hands are busy. I’m not sure I’ve ever seen a routine with quite so much skirt swishing since Fern Britton actually had her hands surgically glued in there for three weeks by Wardrobe and she was too polite to tell anyone. It’s a good job Frankie is a seasoned skirt-swisher and can pull it off. Generally though it’s a fun routine and very redolent of the movie. Frankie is haughty, superior and aggressive throughout, and whilst it’s not quite the full on flamethrowers and fainting fits fantasmagoria of Susanna’s paso last year, it’s just as fun in its own right. Also apparently Kevin split his trews at one point but I sadly can’t detect it. Lord knows there would be pictures if I could, if only to determine whether he does in fact wear Batman or Spiderman underwear.


It gets a Standing Ovation, including from Denise van Outen.

When she was in West Side Story, all she did was sit on a chimney. Darcey starts for the judges, saying that Frankie is on fire. Well that would explain why they let those extinguishers off at the end. She was so proud of what a feisty woman Frankie was, and what beautiful lines she produced. Donny is next and cackles that he doesn’t want Frankie to be MAD AT HIM, BABY!

He does realise that’s not supposed to influence his scoring right? I mean I wouldn’t want Iveta coming after me with the…full array of skills apparently at her disposal but I’d still try to be professional… He tells Frankie that if they ever do a remake of West Side Story she’d be the perfect Maria. Now, Donny’s taken a lot of stick because it’s Anita who sings America but…imagining meek and sweet Frankie trying to be Rita Morreno scares the bejesus out of me, so I’m with him on this one.

Len crows FRANKIE GOES TO HOLLYWOOD and calls it her best dance so far, and Bruno praises Kevin for successfully melding West Side Story with paso doble whilst still keeping an authentic flavour of both. Craig closes us out by saying that he agrees with everyone else. Five judges really is too many isn’t it?

Up to Claud 9 they swish, and I realise that

the fact that that giant Oscar has been hovering at the backing looking like it’s about to lob that star right at whoever’s getting praise has been bugging me all evening. Although on that form it’d fit in well with some of the current pro line-up. Claudia briefly touches on the whole TOO NICE TO PASO DOBLE angle that half the Nice Young Women who do this show get, and she snarks that her husband will probably tell you that she definitely isn’t.

You know it. Scores are in


Michael Corleone & Kay Adams dancing the waltz

I’m kind of disappointed they haven’t made him full-on Brando with a dodgy wig and cotton-wool balls in his cheeks, but here we are. Tess segues in by doing a really really weak joke about the waltz being an offer Jake couldn’t refuse, which gets no reaction from the audience whatsoever.

You can tell even she’s sick of even trying at this point.

In his VT, Jake grumpily says that he’s got no idea how he’s ever going to top his salsa. THAT’S THE SPIRIT!

In training now, he does on to say that he’s doing a waltz to the Godfather Theme, and as The Godfather is a film all about (murdering your) family, he’s decided to

fire a pretty solid salvo in this year’s Baby Warz. Both Buster and Amber turn up for training and get hurled around and played with (I can’t help but think there are more fun dances to watch the training for than a waltz, but ok) and then Jake starts to get all weepy over how DADDY WON’T BE THERE TO TUCK THEM IN AT BED-TIME and alright Jake, you’ve made your point. You can store up a certain amount of Schmaltz Points to burn off with weeks of stoic grumpiness, but we’re not quite at “WHERE’S DADDY GONE MUMMY?” levels yet.


Any jokes vis a vis Janette and horse’s heads will not be tolerated in the comments section, I warn you now. Oh alright, maybe just the one. So as Jake said he’s doing his waltz to the music from The Godfather, which is odd because Karen decided to do the same thing in Series 5 with Brian Capron and it did not work at all, with the major problem being that the theming of the music and hence of the dance ended up feeling too moody and almost tango-life to be passed off as a waltz. So…why are we doing it again? Obviously Jake is a much better dancer than Brian was and there’s some

nice moments of quiet, but it all feels very stiff and stop-start and a bit heavy, especially in the couple of pivots he does. Regardless, I think we’ve established that Jake can do mean and moody ballroom now and we can maybe move on to something else.

It doesn’t get a standing ovation either which suggests a slight loss of momentum, although not nearly as much as Sophie when she went from her Week 2 Charleston into her…erm…samba.

Donny starts for the judges by saying that for such a nice man who plays such nice roles that sure was a mean waltz (pssst, Donny, if your scriptwriters have given you sarcasm to do then pause for a laugh) and that Jake is the coolest man in the room right now. I mean…looking at the competition it wouldn’t be hard. I think Ed Milliband would be the coolest man in the room right now. Len follows by yelling that he’s going to make Jake an offer he can’t refuse (reusing Tess’ jokes apparently being an offer Len (AND NOBODY ELSE) can’t refuse) – get swing and sway into the waltz. Because that was stiff and lacking. He goes on to say that waltz isn’t an “incy pincy woo woo dance” which…ok. Never said it was.

Bruno’s next and he says that he liked that Jake’s waltz was “tinged with darkness” and he’s never seen it played that way before. I mean…besides Brian and Karen, Scott & Natalie got dinged for the same thing in Series 8. I guess all that sugar is playing havoc with Bruno’s memory. He tells Jake that if he does a waltz again (…on a Christmas Special?) do it like Len said, but otherwise he liked that. Craig sweeps in to agree and says that he liked the theming and if it had had swing and sway it would have ruined it. Len jumps in affronted to say that IT’S SUPPOSED TO HAVE SWING AND SWAY COZ IT’S A WAWTZ! and then Craig replies by saying that he’ll mark them down for it, but he still liked that they took it out.

I’m with Bruno. None of that made a lick of sense. Darcey closes by calling the dance interesting. Let’s move on.

Up to Claud 9 they go, where Jake is obscenely proud of being called cool by Donny Osmond, and thanks Janette for her choreography. Scores are in


Belle & Lumiere dancing the quickstep


I hope you’re happy Cr…READERS. HOPE YOU’RE HAPPY.

34 points

Gabey & Claire Huddeson dancing the Charleston

In his VT Thom tells us that his salsa was very nerve-wracking because he had to open the show. Well that’s nothing compared to what Iveta had to open to entertain us all, so hush your mouth. He goes on to say that the judges were very harsh but they know what they’re talking about (?) so it’s all good with him.

Next up in training, Iveta says that she’s looking for a leading man with a BIG PERSONALITEH (good luck with that) and Thom says that he’ll turn up in a variety of costumes, and Iveta can pick which one he would most like him to wear. Again, very similar to the audition process for being Kelly Brook’s boyfriend, except with fewer ball-gags involved.



They’re dancing to “New York, New York” from On The Town and already I’m slightly in love with both of their attempts to portray the wide-eyed wonder of two out-of-towners seeing New York for the first time.

For…slightly different reasons. Thom looks like he’s being introduced to something big and fruity for the first time, but I’m not sure it’s The Big Apple. Actually though, for a guy who’s about as naturally suited for expressing emotion as I am to expressing milk, he’s doing a good job at doing the goofiest dance in the pack.

Bless him. His faces may look like they should be on the front of the trains from Thomas The Tank Engine but he’s trying. The whole routine is really fun and upbeat and he performs it reasonably well (although he and Iveta are in sync…not terribly often) and the more I see dances like this the more I think they should just bin Charleston and American Smooth and just replace them with Broadway. You can do all the Fred N Ginge and 1920s nostalgia stuff without having to hear SWIVEL and THAT WAS ONLY 27% FOXTROT I’M GIVIN IT A 4 all the time.


It gets a standing ovation and Bruno asks Thom to sail away with him, because he feels Thom’s tide is turning. I doubt you’re the first to make that offer to him Bruno… He tells Thom that his timing was “almost good” until it wasn’t but hey, he didn’t quit and go and sit on the stairs so well done him. Craig follows by saying that he was really impressed with how Thom coped with all the changes of rhythm thrust upon him in that dance (…) and any mistakes he made would only be noticed by SUPERIOR DAHNCE BEINGS like what the judges are, rather than any of the peons at home. Thanks Craig! Darcey follows, saying that she appreciated Thom’s effort, but he needs to shut his mouth and dance like a man.

Well that escalated quickly.

Donny is next and tells Thom to watch his shoulders hunching because he had the same problem on DANCING WITH THE STARS WHICH HE WAS ON AND HE WON. I would get annoyed with the constant reminders, but they’re reminding me of a finale in which Kelly Osbourne did a bloody awful Showdance and finished dead last so…I’m all for it. Len closes by just

grinning and telling Thom he’s going to score him 8. The standard of judging this week has been something else. So glad I was alive to witness it.

To Claud 9 they rampage, where Claudia congratulates them on their standing ovation and Thom, because he’s a nice boy, says that he was up all night analysing On The Town in minute detail so he could replicate the exact shape of Gene Kelly’s mouth, so that’s probably what Darcey was noticing about his jaw being constantly flapping open. Claudia asks him to replicate it again

Oh Natalie. (Given Thom’s career trajectory in “modelling” it’s probably wise of him to be practising opening his mouth as wide as possible etc etc). Scores are in

31. Thom takes this opportunity, after thanking Pasha for giving him a hand two weeks ago, to give props to Olivier Award winning choreographer Bill Deamer for choreographing that routine. I’m only mentioning this because apparently it really surprised people that Iveta didn’t choreograph this, even though I’m fairly sure historically not a single pro has ever choreographed a Charleston on this show ever.

Penny Carroll and John Garnett dancing the American Smooth

(Yes I had to wikipedia that one as well)

In her VT, Sunetra tells us that live last Saturday night was the first time her cha cha had ever gone right all the way through. She tells her crying was a combination of that, getting nice comments from Craig, getting nice comments from Brenda, moving from the second page of the leaderboard to the first, and most of all scoring a MIGHTY 26 POINT. You might want to have the tissues handy this week Brendan…

In training, Brendan tells us that this Movie Week he’ll be choreographing an American Smooth to “The Way You Look Tonight” from Swing Time. Sunetra asks Brenda if she can bring in some outside experts to help her get the feel of the dance, and how you can tell this is a scripted VT is that Brendan doesn’t yell “OH AM I NOT GOOD ENOUGH FOR YOU? IS DANCE-LEGEND AND THREE TIME STRICTLY FINALIST BRENDAN COLE NOT SUFFICIENT?” and storm off. It turns out these outside experts are

Sunetra’s son and a mate, because she’s DAMNED if Jake Wood is bringing in two cute kids when she only gets to use one. DAMNED.

The charming kids are here to appraise Sunetra’s rehearsal technique although

this one appears to be cribbing from Bruno’s notes, the big cheat. The end result is that Sunetra gets scored 10 by her own son but only 7 from her son’s mate, so that’s him not allowed to come round and play on the X Box for the next month then.


Here comes your classy Old Hollywood American Smooth of the night, where the dames are

coy, and the gents are

debonair and everyone knew where they stood vis a vis corporal punishment and saluting the Queen. It’s a very elegant light and floaty number and the lifts are well and lightly done. Sunetra’s definitely improved a lot since the last time she was in hold, although she still has a habit of lifting her elbows up like an 8 year old eating out at an Angus Steakhouse for the first time. My only other issue is that Wardrobe have conspired to make it look like she’s got

glittery bum-seepage. Which is never nice, I can tell you.


It gets a Standing Ovation, and Craig starts for the judges, saying that it was smooth and stylish and that he adored her arms. Her shoulders did hunch up towards the end of the dance though. So there. Darcey follows by saying that the dance so suited her, and Brendan’s choreography made her look like a star. The cameras at this point cut to a woman in the audience that

looks so much like Sunetra I wonder if human cloning might in fact now be real.

Donny is next and tells Sunetra that he thinks he saw a little Ginger Rogers in her tonight (must have got an eyeful during one of the lifts), Len calls it “style with a smile” and Bruno closes by telling Sunetra that she had just the right combination of elegance and sass.

Or as he likes to call it : Sassegance (For Men, by Bruno).

Up they go to Claud 9 with Brendan hurling popcorn everywhere

because, as much as people might claim he’s mellowed since becoming a dad, he’s still Brendan. Claudia tells them both that she found them incredibly moving to watch and really admires how Sunetra is making the show work around her Casualty schedule. Well…it’s easier when you don’t give the Casualty stars Comedy VTs that literally hobble them Claud. Sunetra beams that an Indian Scouser doesn’t get to dance like that very often, and everyone goes “awwwwwwwwwwwwww”. Scores are in


Superman & Lois Lane dancing the paso doble

I know they were aiming for Clark Kent, but it looks a bit more Joe 90/sinister dentist.

In his VT, Mark says that he was happy with his scores last week, because they were higher than his scores the week before. Hey, as long as they keep on adding one extra guest judge each week nobody’s scores ever have to go down. AUTOMATIC JOURNEY FOR EVERYBODY, LET’S DRAFT IN A K-POP BAND AS GUEST JUDGES! SCORES OUT OF 50,000! Mark goes on to say that he was so petrified waiting for his name to be called out on the Results Show, and we get to relive in great deal Mark’s quivery mouth, eyes and nostril rims. Please please please when it’s appropriate can we leave him til last to be revealed safe like we always used to do to Patsy Kensit to make her do a mental?

In training, Karen asks Mark who his favourite superhero is, and Mark says “Superman” because he is laaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaame.

Karen tells him that that’s convenient because this week he will be playing Superman in his paso doble! I would have loved for them to try to paso to the Spiderman theme tune with a cape made of webbing. Loved it. Anyway Mark declares this to be “SICK!” which is a word the kids are now using to mean good, if this were 1992. This all somehow segues into a Comedy VT wherein Karen is screaming for help and Mark turns into

a rubber fetishist cos-player to save her but it turns out that all she wants is coffee WOMEN EH TSK.


Where we find Superman quite literally stood there reading about how amazing he is, what a bloody narcissist. Lois meanwhile is

having a full on tantrum on the floor, kicking and squealing like a kid in Morrisons whose mum won’t buy her any Yop. After we’ve heard far too much of Karen Hauer’s squealing for one life time, Superman wanders over and tells her to stop being such a daft pranny and get up off the floor.

And Lois is all like

DO YOU FIND ME SEXY DRESSED LIKE WONDER WOMAN SUPERMAN, DOES THAT TURN YOU ON, DO YOU WANT ME TO GET MY GOLDEN LARIAT (ie my mobile phone charger tied into a noose and wrapped in the foil from Ferrero Rochers)? And Superman’s all

Bitch no, I spend all day with Wonder Woman, she smells of gym locker rooms and won’t stop going on about Michael Buble, do you think I want to come home to that as well, geez, now get changed out of that stupid outfit and make my dinner and then maybe dress up as Captain America and we’ll see. And then Lois is all

how the fuck do you wear these capes all the time anyway, I keep on getting my heels caught in mine and falling arse over tit and then Superman’s all

I know babes, that’s why I’m trying to get out of the game and move into catalogue modeling, here, what do you think of my Blue Steel look and Lois Lane is all

oh, right, catalogue modelling, what a noble calling, is that why you appear to have the actual Green Lantern shoved down the front of your pants and then Superman’s all




Scenes from a life there.

It gets a Standing Ovation, and it’s then left up to the judges to try to bring some level of technical critique to what just occurred there. Darcey pulls

this face and complains about the lack of pelvic tilt, Donny yells “YOU ARE SUPERMAN!”, Len calls the paso doble “one of those dances where you just have to CAHM AHT!” (really narrowing it down there), Bruno talks about Mark’s “Paso Nuts” (and yes we can all see them) and Craig says it was hugely entertaining but let’s face it, in terms of making sense this evening hasn’t since about an hour ago so let’s just have the scores

26, let’s have the final leaderboard

let’s have a poll

let’s have a picture of Claudia in cardboard pants

let’s have a Standing Ovation Count Leaderboard

Caroline/Frankie/Pixie : 3
Alison/Jake/Mark/Simon/Sunetra/Thom : 2
Scott/Steve : 1
Jennifer/Judy/Tim : 0

And let’s call it a night.



39 thoughts on “Strictly Come Dancing 12 – Week 3 Performance

  1. Monaogg

    Hope the wig Steve wore got washed before Joanne had to wear it. Although nothing could be worse than Donny’s syrup/weave/rug whatever it was it looked like it was trying to escape his scalp.

    Hope you have learnt your lesson about asking the GBP to decide what you blog about. πŸ˜‰ Guaranteed an unhappy ending.

  2. Rebecca

    Not sure if you saying you couldn’t see where Kevin split his pants was a joke but his trousers are split in the screencap you have put of their end dance pose – they split when Frankie ‘fell’ and he fell to his knee and caught her.

  3. Jan

    I love your scribbling out of Donny’s scores. If that kind of frighteningly advanced mathematics didn’t take me so long I would have been mentally doing that for every contestant while watching the show. Bloody Osmond. I suspect that Craig’s exceptionally bubbly demeanour on It Takes Two may have been the result of Osmond leaving and reflection on the whole episode giving Craig a new perspective and lease of life.

    I think I might print out that picture of Len with “You need to look back at what you’re doing,
    and then come back and do something else” underneath it and put it on my wall as an Inspirational Image. I’ve never been moved by photographs of footprints on beaches and definitions of true friendship, but that resonates with me deeply.

  4. Minxy

    I’m ok with the 10 score when I realise Alison got a 9!
    Sad you didn’t do a final leaderboard with the real scores tho! I giggled a little each time I saw Donny’s crossed out. He really has killed the last vestiges of the adoration I used to have for him as a teen!

    No more guest judges

    And I have no remorse about evicting Pix n Tix either

    1. monkseal Post author

      I legitimately was so puffed out by that point of the recap that I just plum forgot BUT I will leave the blank space as a testament to Donny.

      1. Minxy

        I forgive you! Lol
        I am so tuckered from reading it and lolling and frankly being too lazy/chronically and debilitatingly ill (actually lolling causes severe pain) to do it myself (and normally I would happily do it for you ) in the slightest repayment of what you do for us

        But I bet the judges leaderboard and the overall results would have been way different . ITT reminded me that he gave Wrighty a 9 too …
        No where else to go but a 10 then was there. And did the arse also mark PixnTix lower … Really? Or Steve? Etc

        The judges need to judge on the technical on the show and then vote for their faves like like the rest of us. Or give two sets of scores like ice skating
        One for technical One for enjoyment or other reasons

        Thanks again for all you (and Steve ) do
        It is appreciated

  5. min

    It would have been great to have Marie as guest Osmond. She could have spontaneously fainted at Jake and he could have given her his patented Strictly ‘get a grip’ look. Missed opportunity there.

    1. monkseal Post author

      They should have had her do the Doll Dance just to show that Snowdance might not be the worst showdance ever.

  6. Dancing Cake

    Love the deleted Donny marks – and everything else, including Iveta’s random animal faces in the corner and Thom’s reaction to Judy – but am really regretting voting out Pixie and Trent. I’m still completely creeped out by them, but the only thing that might have helped would have been a Monkseal description of that truly shudderous bit near the beginning where they both look icily into the camera and then suddenly change expression to evil witch-like grins. It reminded me of those movies where the corpse suddenly opens its eyes and had the the same traumatic effect on me for hours afterwards. But YOU COULD HAVE MADE IT FUNNY and it was all my fault for voting them off your recap. I need to be careful what I wish for.

  7. Agrippina

    If any Strictly producers are reading this, I have a suggestion for Halloween week. Pixie and Trent could reprise their quickstep, except to See My Vest, with Trent dressed as Mr Burns.

  8. Left Feet

    I don’t really mind having a guest judge, if they add to the program. Donny Osmond perhaps would have been better during a Big Band Week or Broadway Week. If they wanted a guest judge from DWTS either Carrie Anne or Julianne would have been fine who are both dancers. We also have plenty of Strictly Champions as well if they want to go down that route of a celeb champion.

    1. monkseal Post author

      If we need a Guest Judge they should really replace somebody already there – 5 judges are too many I think. Everyone got far too sound-bitey, especially Len.

  9. Ferny

    3 Thoughts:

    Thom is becoming hilarious to me and I can’t quite put my finger on why…I’ll think about it and get back to you.

    Aliaz as a shy geek needs to happen every week, Alison or no Alison.

    In the photo where Duncan is giving a standing ovation – the guy in the bottom right corner made me laugh πŸ™‚

  10. John

    About Donnie’s ‘Anton was leading you’ comment – I rewatched this bit and I noticed Darcy and Craig pointing to a notepad (or a phone) on the desk and then looking off camera and smiling at something or someone. So I’m not sure Craig was smirking at what Donnie said, the timing was a bit off. (Unless he found the entire comment funny, in which, quite possibly).

    Natalie this week, OMG. That girl’s a riot. This Natalie every week please. The Thom mouth X-D

    This week was really rather funny.

  11. Huriye

    NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! I say Boo to your Campaign to bin the Charleston and American Smooth! They’re not all “Broadway” stylee. Think Sophie’s glorious typically English “The Boyfriend” style Charleston from last year. Frankly TAAAAHM & Iveta’s was more Broadway routine and very little Charleston, but that’s what the music called for. Thank you for saying who Bill Deamer is. Thought it was very rude of Claude to mutter “whoever that is” after TAAAHM thanked him for choreography. Get to the Theatre more Claude, and see less crappy films! Previous Charleston choreographers have been Ryan Francois & Jenny Thomas, who choreographed Team Cola’s one, and won it for them. Ryan & Jenny are World Lindy Hop Champions, and even though he speaks with a bit of an American accent now, cos they live there, his bro still lives in Bow, east Lahndan, and got me a lovely signed photo via a friend last time they came over for Strictly, the Team Cola year. (They’d also left 2 complimentary tix, but the bi*ch took someone else, though I’m not bitter…..)

    Jenny’s face looks vaguely calm in your screencap. But I thought she looked ready to swing for Donny after he criticized her, especially after she swooned and said her first record was “Twelfth of Never” in an earlier VT.

    I think Hotlips Hauer & Mad as a Box of Frogs JFG are using all their creative energies tweeting eachother craziness to have anything left for their celeb’s routines.

    The way some folk are dissing lovely, quiet Trent now is EXACTLY the way they dissed Natalie in her first series. Now they all lurve her. I hope he remembers WHO spoke up for him in future years, cos I’m enjoying his work! πŸ˜€

    1. Huriye

      Sorry Monkseal, I can’t keep up! I see you have Jenny’s pursed lips, screwed up Face at Donny in the Results Recap! Cheers!

      Thanks for the gorgeously delightful screencaps of Natalie Poppins. What a dream. πŸ™‚ So pleased her parents were there to see her starring in that Pro routine, and not just a fumbled Cabaret Catastrophe, after which she turned into Bette Davies in ‘Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?’….BTW maybe she was adopted, but she has got their noses……

    2. monkseal Post author

      I remember the Nat-hate well and it had more of an air of “OVER-COMPETITIVE BITCH!” about it. The Trent hate is really more calling him boring/creepy.

      All SO VERY WRONG obviously (Antipodean pros <3)

      1. Huriye

        His partner is boring/annoying, but she can interpret his choreo, so I’ll forgive her.

        Yay for lovely Antipodean DWTS Pro Kym Johnson too πŸ™‚

  12. Marquis

    Didn’t you LOVE Donny giving an encouraging speech to chap from blue? Simon (?) “do it for your daughter” like he was about to fly a mission and Simon actually saluted i think without irony. (He was about to do the dahnce off is all not fly the channel in a spitfire!!)

  13. detectivesandsidekicks

    “Oh Craig. I know drag queen technology has advanced over the years but no amount of breastplates are going to give any guy boobs like Ola’s.”

    Not even from India Ferrah gave it a go with her $600 breastplate.
    Great recap as usual, monkseal! πŸ™‚

  14. Gusty Gussett

    Excellent recap as always Monkseal… the show was sooo long, I don’t know how you do it. By the time we got to Mark’s Superman dance, Mr G and I were about as sober as Steph and Dom off Gogglebox . When Mark spun Karen around on the floor and her rainbow skirt swirled out, I said ” is she supposed to be gay pride Wonder Woman or is it the flag of the Seychelles?” (thanks Pointless Celebrities). So I know I had spent far, far too long glued to the sofa.

    1. monkseal Post author

      I swear, the part where it looks like he kicked her right in the face is where I stopped pretending I even knew what was going on any more.

  15. DJ Mikey

    Suddenly, without precedent Pasha’s trousers just became the best thing on strictly. Never before has a garment screamed lick me everywhere, without having Ben Cohen or Ashley Taylor Dawson squeezed into it for an Attitude cover shoot.

    In my head a new Monkie has been born – “Outfit that most made me want to reach into my pants/lick the body that was under it” – feel free to use it. I won’t even claim a royalties..


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