Strictly Come Dancing 12 – Week 9 Performance Summary

So if there was a Blackpool Hangover this week, it only lasted for the first couple of dances, as Steve opens by stumbling around woozy-headed looking for a curry dressed like an American Football player (I’m not sure if it’s a credit to Steve’s physique that I genuinely can’t tell if he’s wearing pads or not) and calls it a jive. Caroline on the other hand appears to have settled on Hair Of The Dog for her hangover cure of choice, as she slops around in her American Smooth to Mack The Knife, tripping up over her dress, wobbling up and down the stairs and wearing a performance face that can be best described as “I LOVE YOU PASHASHSA *hic*”.

After that though? It feels like everyone is firing on all cylinders. A little bit…too much maybe in some cases, as Jake’s samba goes officially absolutely out of control, like his salsa on cocaine, with extra gyrations, extra tooth-grinding, extra snorting, and above all, extra camp, as it’s performed at full-tilt to the Macarena in a truly vomitous pink shirt. It still…kind of works? But the judges probably should note that saying something was technically poor and a bit of a mess doesn’t really follow with then giving it 10s. Also getting 10s are our two pop princesses as the show’s pretence that “Charleston” is a genre collapses utterly as Pixie just straight up-performs her climactic Musical Theatre number from her starring role in “Moulin Rouge : The Musical” (and utterly ignores Darcey’s “…less with the legs love” advice as she does so) in which Trent appears not once and Frankie does a quite nice, liddle bit dull Viennese Waltz with what sounds like someone noisily doing the washing-up in the background.

Less feted by the judges, but still somewhat adored are Simon & Kristina, who jank Scott and Natalie’s salsa music and do more or less the same routine, except without the gingham realness that made that routine so epicmazing (just me?). The show tries to make “WOW, IT’S HIS FIRST 9 FROM CRAIG!” a thing but, let’s face it, with all the 10s flying around in the air like Janette in a pro-dance, a 9 doesn’t cut it any more. In danger of facing off in the dance-off on paper though are Mark and Sunetra. Both there before, both with nice-enough but fairly underwhelming ballroom dances that get nice-enough but underwhelming scores. Time will tell if it’s the obvious combination of two out of the three of them and Steve in the dance-off, or if it’s time for another SHOCK BOOT(OM TWO APPEARANCE) after the last few weeks of comfortable cuts of stragglers.

Most important though, Claudia is back, and just about holding it together until the very end, when Kristina says something sweet that sets her off and chokes her up and then it all feels very genuine and a bit real, which let’s face it is anomalous and terrifying on this show. Fortunately we’re back with Tess repeating back what she’s just heard an octave higher and calling it an interview shortly afterwards. Phew.

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34 thoughts on “Strictly Come Dancing 12 – Week 9 Performance Summary

  1. Chris

    Is it just me or was Blackpool Hangover week better than actual Blackpool this year? If nothing it was worth it for Mary Berry’s face of LUST after Jake’s samba.

    And plus, this week Darcey finally justified herself for me. Her absolute breakdown after Jake’s samba, digging her nails into Len for obviously shit-talking her during Frankie’s critique, the phrase ‘beautiful lady charm’, and ‘a twerking 10!’ because those are real words that came out of her mouth. I actually want her to stay next year if we can get gold like this (also she seems to be way more into it now)

    Reply
  2. Minxy

    So good to have Clauds back despite the great job Zoe did. She has been missed! And am just as happy cos it means her daughter is recovering well!

    I know Claude and Tess have way better chemistry than Bruce and Tess but …. Please please let Zoe replace Tess

    The most over marked was Caroline and Pash – lonely Craig marked the dance she actually performed as opposed to what it should have been grr ( I felt for her but …). Did they really get the same marks as Simon? Not even close. Nor even as close as Mark
    Jake …. yes Len how can you say not technically good then give it a 10 You arse. You total arse
    I enjoyed it but a 10 ughhh.
    Totally destroyed the feel good from the Claud9 fun – which I enjoyed but also thought eek that’s a lot of pressure and expectations dumped on him.
    So the snake hip Jake theme is this year’s people’s champion hubba.?
    Grrr just let these things happen Evil Moira Ross in a Rainbow Wig. … It works way better organically than being forced

    I like pixie and Trent more than it may appear (she has a future in musical theatre) but Lordy Lordy Lordy That was a charleston? I think not! And wtf did she does she understand by bent and soft knees/legs? Wow I was so distracted by the strangeness of her legs the rest was lost on me

    Reply
    1. missfrankiecat

      Pixie reminds me quite a lot of Alesha in the leg department. Those are a very attractive pair of pins and she knows how to sell a performance, but in dancing terms there is just about everything wrong with her leg action that it is possible to get wrong. And yet nobody on the so-called judging panel so much as squeaks about it. Worse yet, in this Charleston (and her opening jive) the shortness of the dress and the demands of the genres made the ugliness of the leg action so obvious even non-dancers not fixated on her beauty and their own agendas can spot it and ask ‘what the f**k’ re the comments and marking.

      Reply
      1. MorticiaA

        I so agree about Pixie’s legs. I spent the whole dance transfixed by her drive-thru’ knees and wondering WTF was going on in that department? If this was evident all week, why was she wearing a fanny pelmet that only served to highlight this issue? Don’t get me wrong, I am not a jellus hatah, and really like the Trixie partnership, but this ruined (the purity of) this dahnce for me…

    2. Neio

      Tess seemed a lot more relaxed this week for the very reason Zoe wasn’t there showing up how unnatural and stilted she is in comparison.

      I absolutely hated Pixie’s Charleston. It just didn’t look like a Charleston, her legs were weird and bowed throughout, and we barely even saw Trent during it. Charleston fail.

      Reply
    3. monkseal Post author

      I really powerfully want to see Claudia and Zoe work together. I think it would be magical. People say “oooh you can’t have TWO wacky ones” but then what the fuck are Mel & Sue?

      Reply
  3. missfrankiecat

    I hated this week with a vengeance. I actually started to wonder if there was something wrong with my streaming making the dances I was watching look such messes when the judges and audience were apparently raving. Caroline, Jake and Pixie all danced with supreme commitment, and virtually no technique, routines which were travesties of the genres they were supposed to represent. They were fun, they were musical theatre but they were not AS, Samba nor Charleston. Let’s call a spade a spade and just rename this BTF for trained ‘amateurs’. Above all lest just get rid of pantomime judges and let the public vote decide as they are as capable of judging entertainment not based on any technical standards as Len and co. I won’t be watching anymore but at least it’ll be honest(ish).
    Claud’s choked emotion was heart-braking. Plaudits to the camera man who valiantly kept her out of frame for as long as possible and to Simon, the unexpected face of humanity, unable to mug for votes to camera while hearing her distress.

    Reply
    1. monkseal Post author

      To be fair, American Smooth and Charleston have ever been the most elastic of genres on this show. Charleston stretched the elastic of the term so far now that it’s basically snapped, and I’ve never ever really thought that “American Smooth” meant much, but Pasha gave the game away on ITT when he said that there are no rules in it. Well…not any more there aren’t.

      Reply
    1. Lesley Rigg

      I missed Steve’s dance because my eyes started leaking at Claud holding it together, a bonus maybe. Jake I found a bit icky for a change, then the eyes developed another leak when Kristina hugged Claud and she struggled to finish her sentence, there was some stuff in the middle none of which was terrible.

      Reply
  4. Monaogg

    No mention of the 7 league boots both Jake & Simon seemed to be wearing. Jake’s Samba I can only describe as a lift free Salsa with a couple of samba buns.

    Reply
    1. monkseal Post author

      I did love the technical discussion of whether the samba rolls travelled enough. As opposed to…the rest of the dance.

      Reply
  5. phoebefair

    Sunetra wins this round of KiddyWarz hands down, on sheer numbers alone.

    And was I the only one praying for Frankie to chuck up over the judges, Tess, the front row? A whole new meaning for Viennese Whirl.

    Reply
  6. Miss Cavie

    If Frankie had hurled all over Tess and the front row, she would have earned all my votes for the rest of the series. Loved her ‘talk to me at your peril’ face as they staggered over to the judges.

    Serious WTF? moment at Jake and Pixie’s scores. Both of them produced what appeared to be an incoherent mess.

    Simon has been a changed man since he shaved that cone off his head. Also enjoyed Sunetra going in for the kill in Babywarz, Caroline’s drunken American Smooth and Mark’s attempt at a Tango face.

    Oh, and Steve turned up as well.

    Reply
  7. John

    Claud held it together all evening until Kristina ambushed her!

    Caroline shafted by wardrobe AGAIN. I think under that billowy dress was some great legwork hidden away. I thought she was fine though. She’s in danger, along with Sunetra. Steve has been so obviously thrown under the bus it’s comical. On first, only one wearing nonsense gear, not that he seems to mind though.

    Simon’s turn out of the remaining hunx to shine this week. Very impressive.

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  8. Huriye

    I don’t think you can entirely blame the Judges for the overuse of 10s last night, as it’s obviously down to instructions. Whereas some dances were undermarked in the early weeks, now they are overmarked. Just let them score what they see, irrespective of what flippin’ week it is!

    I could be uber kind and suggest that Pixie’s legs were in homage to Josephine Baker…. that bowlegged style was very 1920s, wasn’t it? 😉 Whereas the rest of the routine was 1950s Showgirl styleee. If you compare it to the best Charleston we’ve ever seen on Strictly, Sophie & Brendan’s, then it doesn’t match up, no. (Another dance that didn’t get a 10 because it was “too early” Eville Producers).

    Jake, I’m truly sick of now, and if he wins, I’ll be very disappointed. He’s a one trick pony, and Janette’s choreo is showing severe limitations. That so called Samba was just a series of jerky bits & tricks with no smooth rhythm whatsoever.

    I do think Frankie’s VW was the best danced routine, but the music choice was awful, the dress cheap and gaudy looking, and they’d done something nasty with her hair, but she’s always watchable, and I think KFG is a bit in awe of her.

    Again Simon & Kristina’s dance…was it a Salsa? Not really. It was a Pop/Disco track and didn’t even fit a Salsa rhythm, so what should we expect? Kristina just trotted out her bag of Latin moves/lifts we’ve seen before, but I’m enjoying Simon more than Jake.

    Mark & Karen’s Tango was just strange, and the overly dramatic ending was offputting. EEK! I wish they’d create Drama and theatricality through the dancing and choreography. Why aren’t they consulting Anya more? The choreo really dropped off this week. 😦

    I just can’t believe in Brendan & Sunetra as a couple anymore. They had a few good weeks (American Smooth being the best) but to my eyes he just doesn’t relate to her in any way now, and I’m finding them difficult to watch.

    Steve AND Ola were both dreadful in that tacky Jive. Rotten costumes and dull routine, but fabulous music. What a shame!

    The audience were truly hyper and their incessant cheering and whooping as soon as anyone moved was annoying. And WARDROBE yet again!!!! Caroline should sue!
    Whilst standing still, I thought, at last she’s got a decent dress, but no! As soon as she started dancing, and the slits were revealed and the length, it was obvious what was going to happen. Why didn’t Elf&Safety trim 5 inches orf the bottom?! Felt so sorry for Caroline, and she’s a trooper for not slagging off Wardrobe in the Clauditorium. I find the most interesting thing about this couple now is how Caroline is panting after Pasha like a hormonal schoolgirl, and he’s trying to keep her at arm’s length.

    Finally, don’t even bother dragging on any other kids VT makers. Zoe’s 2 on ITT win hand down in BabyWarz. No contest!! Who knew FatBoySlim could produce 2 such adorable offspring? Zoe must have very strong genes. 🙂

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  9. Gusty Gusset

    Mark and Karen’s tango had a touch of domestic violence about it . I didn’t like itat all.

    Pixie’s dance was just way too manic. If there had been fewer steps and a bit more style about I could have got on board. Same goes for Jake I guess. I suspect that both of those dances were more impressive in the studio than on tv.

    I think Caroline’s managing to keep the Pasha-lust under control quite well actually – she’s only human after all. Imagine what your expression would be like if you were dancing with him Monkseal. I suppose we’ll get an idea on the results show when Robin dances with Aljaz.

    Reply
    1. phoebefair

      Ha – I thought that too about the domestic violence bit.
      Made me ponder what domestic life is like Chez Kev+Karen.
      On the topic of the lovely Kevin, can anyone explain what is going on with his hair?

      Reply
      1. missfrankiecat

        Having just watched the frenzy of the Kev/Karen Copacabana, I do not want to dwell on images of their domestic life. Mind you, his hair was the only particle of him not vibrating to Manilow, which suggests a sealant more powerful even than Barry’s face masque.

  10. MorticiaA

    So the great narrative race to the final has started. I can only presume that Jake has a massive lead in the public vote, and that the judges have been instructed to overmark to a ridiculous extent to justify his clean sweep to the final and eventual triumph. He had an impressive first three weeks, but after that, the same rigid shouldered stamping he does in each routine has grown pretty wearisome. That samba was a hideous dad dancing mess of epic proportions and looked more like a reprise of his salsa than bearing any relation to a samba…. the twerking brought me out in a cold sweat rather than a hot flush. Started off wanting Jake to win as the mature, untrained dancer against the bevvy of girl bots, but not now.
    Mark really cannot shut off the “sell, sell, sell” agenda, can he? He started to do his usual ‘umble old me stuff practically before Dayvarch and the man in the hat had eked out their last note. Not appreciating their tango and that pseudo comical charge at Karen like a bull in a misplaced paso.
    Very interested to see that the over enthusiastic marking of him as the j word contestant seems to have had a temporary lull. Does this mean that Simon is taking up the mantle as the come back man and the fourth contestant in the final? In a dance off between Mark and Simon or Caroline and Simon who would come through? I hope for a Simon win in that situation as I am loving his performances and increased enthusiasm, not to mention the constant non media trained awkardness and gaffes each week, which are kind of endearing in the botdom of this year’s line up. Are the producers pushing for a 2 women, 2 men final or does Caroline still have a chance to make it a 3 girl and Jake final? So many questions…..

    Reply
    1. monkseal Post author

      I’m guessing it’ll be Jake-Simon-Pixie-Frankie but part of me does think, as so often happens, we’ll end up having a series of winding twists turns and peaks and dips only to…end up with exactly the four people in the final everyone thought would be there from the start

      Reply
  11. Kitty Mittelschmerz (@Pity_Kitty)

    “But the judges probably should note that saying something was technically poor and a bit of a mess doesn’t really follow with then giving it 10s.”

    I’m so happy to see others here not feeling the love for Jake. I just think he is bad. He is not a good dancer. He has bad posture. He is awkward and wooden.

    Simon is miles ahead. I can’t believe one of the judges, can’t remember which, said something like “you’re a changed man. You look so comfortable…almost TOO relaxed” or words to that effect. It’s such utter HORSESHIT.

    Reply
    1. monkseal Post author

      As I said in the main recap I just think if you’re going to give something a 10 you shouldn’t criticise it because really…it takes away the specialness. Such as still exists.

      Reply

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