Strictly Come Dancing 13 – Week 8 Performance Summary

The Week Before Blackpool it is then. And this year sees the contestants and pros go further than ever before to get their arses parked on that Megabus to The North. Normally this week is just another week, marked out by more mention of rock and donkeys than even those…special videos I watch sometimes but this year? Even though a Jamelia boot feels like the most bolted on thing since Mark Benton crawled his way through three weeks of dance-off in a row, the sheer levels of pyrotechnics going on in some cases make me fear that these couples are going to have nothing left for the Tower Ballroom itself.

Anita, for once, feels like she’s delivering one of the more traditional and understated routines of the evening – a quickstep based around a first date. With Gleb Savchenko. In a park. In full evening dress. And, I repeat, this is one of the more subdued dances of the evening. She does a good job, almost gap-free, but it does still linger slightly under the weight of the shadow of Harry’s effort to the same song (“Don’t Get Me Wrong”). Requiring a performance breakthrough in foxtrot of all dances, Aliona goes full American Smooth contempowaft to a Sam Smith number. It’s a very good job and personally I feel the smouldering romance to it, but he does do a massive stumble right in front of the camera, and Craig sticks rigidly to the “ONLY GURNY DANCES COUNT FOR PERFORMANCE BREAKTHROUGHS!” rule, leaving him perilously close to the bottom of the leaderboard in ballroom again. Helen also feels somewhere in the middle – doing a great tango and finally shaking off the weeks and weeks and weeks of hip-waggling latin by being as stiff as she wants to be – but the whole thing is undercut by an awful music choice on a week that’s choc with oddities (“Hold Back The River”). Doesn’t really scream “tango” does it?

Everyone else though? Full throttle all the way down the A1. I can see a lot of differences in opinion of what worked and what didn’t, but at least everyone’s erm…trying. For me the only real stinker is Kellie’s samba, a 90s hip-hop infused effort to “Boom Shake The Room”, that only increases the sense that having hit the dance-off she’s getting a bit desperate. Twerking, body-popping and frenetic colours abound and it’s all…a bit much, only topped off by Craig fully morphing into Simon Cowell mid “I didn’t like that…I LOVED IT” and giving it a 9. Peter’s theming as well could come close to provoking a vomit break (Dead Cilla AND His Kids? IN THE SAME DANCE?!) but mercifully there’s no real traces of them in the dance itself, which is nonetheless still a pretty mediocre Viennese Waltz.

Everyone else? I kind of love. Jeremy’s quickstep is as dreadful as you’d expect given the height difference and the speed problems and…everything he’s done in ballroom so far but the bizarre 90s PC Text Adventure Mining Game choreography is legitimately a hilarious confection and if he was ever going to get the Pimp Slot I’m glad it was for this. The audience oddly seem not at all into it compared to weeks past which leaves me utterly confused both in terms of what makes *me* like a Jeremy routine and also what makes the public like one. Maybe there is no answer here. Jamelia similarly fails to come to grips with the technicalities of samba but goes out and has the sort of rump-shaking party you can tell she’s wanted to do all along, to “Respect”, with a prom theme. Given that it’s likely to be her swan song, not a bad job at all.

The night though, and hopefully a guaranteed slot for an embarassing VT centered around the Blackpool Tower next week, is owned by Katie, who does a GALACTIC SHIRLEY BASSEY RUMBA that exceeds all limits of what you’d expect either from her or Anton in latin, and Georgia, who finally gives the show, after several abortive attempts in years past (Patsy Kensit’s Charleston, Holly’s Cellblock Tango, Lisa’s American Smooth) the definitive Chicago theme dance it deserves, as she absolutely nails Hot Honey Rag to the floor and makes it pregnant. It all makes Peter’s effort from last week look pretty small beer and stakes a convincing claim to be the best Charleston on this show ever YES BETTER THAN SOPHIE’S I WENT THERE.

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49 thoughts on “Strictly Come Dancing 13 – Week 8 Performance Summary

  1. Martin

    For me, Georgia was the only WOW of the night – a shoe-in for the Final now, I feel…strange that the producers put Jeremy in the ‘pimp slot’, a last ditch attempt to get comedy to Blackpool?

    Reply
    1. Kiki

      Agree. I thought they placed the expected best as the last dance. How could they have watched dress rehearsal and put Jeremy last?
      I avoid the spoilers and I’m not worried for Jay but I am worried for Anita or Helen, not that I think they’ll go if up against Jamelia or Jeremy, but their confidence could be knocked if in bottom two.

      Reply
    2. DJ Mikey

      Georgia’s Charleston is 2nd only to Sophie’s – it’s taken a while to get here, but I defo want her and Joe Varney in the Final.

      Blackpool week is defo Jeremy’s last week, I actually liked his Quickstep – it was far too slow but at least they eased up on the props and set dressing for this one. It was tame in comparison with his bloody Tango.

      Reply
    1. Miss Cavie

      I had such high hopes when I saw Jezza wielding that pickaxe. Sadly it didn’t come close to Michael’s iconic demonstration of complete and utter ineptitude!

      Reply
  2. Huriye

    Oh! I went there too Monkseal! But deemed it a draw with SOPHIE, but more points for technical merit for Georgia. What a little star she’s become?! A pocket rocket, and so enjoyable to watch. I would crawl over broken glass to get Hot Honey Rag for a Charleston, and they certainly used it to full effect. Well deserved 10s! πŸ˜€

    Peter & Janette got off lightly from the Judges who over scored them. How can you give 9 for a VW approx. 30% in hold? Compare it to Katie/Anton’s, permanently in hold traversing the floor. Not fair scoring at all. The song and Janette’s dress were gorgeous, but the endless separation and armwafting totally got on my nerves! 6

    I really enjoyed Anita & Gleb! He’s fully adorable now he gets what Strictly is all about. They’re a great couple. His choreo is always interesting and she always performs full on. 8

    Helen & Aljaz, stunningly beautiful couple, super red dress/hairdo. What a shame it wasn’t Jealousy or the Adams Family or something more suitable. But Aljaz did his best with the choreo making it watchable. 8

    Jay & Aliona Foxtrot. She’s starting to annoy me by choreographing too much spinning and arm wafting for herself in front of him whilst Jay remains stationary on two legs. Why? He’s a great natural mover. Give him a routine where he moves as much as you. 7

    Katie’s Rhumba! Oh why does Anton insist on putting that back drag slide move followed by layback in between his legs move? It’s shaky every time! He can’t support her properly, not tall, muscley enough, so she invariably looks awkward. But she lived and breathed that Dance from the first moment posing on her own, looking drop dead gorgeous in that stunning dress! Loved the song and basic Rhumba choreo. Katie could still get to the Final! 9

    Like Len, I’m a Yorkshire Tea Bag in a world of mocca lattes. Their VT irritated me, they can give me heebeegeebees. I expected to loathe it. But Kellie & Kevin’s Samba was a pleasant surprise!! Full of Samba steps and moves, Kellie danced very well, and it worked. 8

    Unlike Jamelia’s Samba with few authentic moves apart from isolations and bum wiggling, but hey, that’s what Tristan gave her. She did her best, and gave it some energy, so good for her. We can’t all be natural dancers. 6

    Jeremy is so believing his own publicity now, it’s too knowing and not as much fun. I didn’t enjoy the routine as much as his Charleston or Thriller. I don’t care what Matthew Bourne says!! πŸ˜›
    I’m always a bit dubious when posh middle class boys claim to love The Jam, Joy Division and The Smiths. Karen’s Ballroom choreo is soooo static as to almost come to a halt. You’ve got a 6ft plus geezer Kazza, why not give him some big, flowing steps. Or can you not choreograph Ballroom? 5 for the props.

    Reply
    1. wulie

      I think Jeremy might have fared better coming after any dance other than Team GG’s Charleston. I wouldn’t be surprised by a Jezza v Jamelia dance-off, with Jeremy getting through to ride the donkey in Blackpool.
      Helen disappointed tonight, feet too turned-out and terrible music for a tango – it felt more like a stroppy foxtrot to me.

      Reply
      1. Isolde

        If they’re in the bottom two, surely Jeremy will go. He was 5 points behind Jamelia, and I can’t imagine the judges turning their opinions round to such an extent.
        Having said that, I’m hoping for a Kellie/Peter dance off then at least one of them can go and be with their kids.

    2. Tal27

      I agree with all of that – Peter Andre annoys me start to finish and if that dance had not been announced as a VW you would have had no idea what it was! Fair play to Janette as she knows he cannot perform in hold but still… and the smoke was so blantantly to cover his tertible footwork. Kellie and Kevin’s routine was embarrassing and hideous in equal measures. This is the first time i enjoyed Georgia and also Katie was magnificent in a dress that has redeemed Vicky Gill this series (along with Janette who looked beautiful like one of thisr ballerinas in a music box,,,)

      Reply
    3. monkseal Post author

      As a posh middle class boy who went to a school of posh middle class boys…you would have been dubious of a lot of people.

      Reply
  3. Left Feet

    Georgia has been a little lost in the shuffle at the start but the last three weeks first class. Best by a long way. Despite this she is still behind Jay in the betting, I suppose the show will be happy that somebody else is creating a buzz. Having a runaway winner (despite his dancing being rather average this week) means that there is no excitement. Peter Andre is this years villain and the rest to the woman all have serious weaknesses. Jay is a good dance but I would like to see more wow from him.

    Reply
    1. Marcela

      I couldn’t agree more with all that. I feel like “What’s the point in supporting X, Y, or Z if Jay’s going to win anyway?”. I want to see more from him too because at the moment it’s feeling he’s a one hit wonder.

      Reply
      1. Left Feet

        The last two years of Strictly were better because you could not call the winner. This year its think its clear from the 3rd dance who will win. I don’t dislike him I liked his Paso and A Tango and hopefully he will show more.

  4. Elaine

    Peter goes back to stomping AGAIN! Travesty of a Viennese waltz. Really loved Georgia & Giovanni! She is so delirious with joy, it makes me smile loads! Jeremy made me laugh loads, but fear his shtick has worn rather thin. At least Clauds was not a Dr Who villain tonight. The universe is restored…

    Reply
  5. dancing cake

    What’s the record for being in dance offs? Have to say if it was Mark Benton and Iveta, I could have watched him every week even if the dance off was guaranteed . Come back Mark and Iveta, much as I love Jeremy, he can’t touch you …

    Reply
    1. monkseal Post author

      A few people (John Barnes, Heather Small, Mark Benton) have been in 4. And there’s quite a few people who did 4 bottom 2s in the non dance-off years.

      Reply
  6. tabithakitten

    Georgia was… as good as I expected her to be. Very, very good. In a Charleston. I don’t see why people are seeming to be bowled over by something that has been telegraphed for three weeks.

    Craig was a massive dick and everything else… meh.

    Reply
  7. Sparklemotion

    I agree with you Monkseal – I thought Jay’s dance was a step up romance-wise and you can’t really gurn through a foxtrot…unless you’re Peter. A 6 was not fair, even with the stumble.
    What week did Louis reach ultimate-gurn and finally win over Craig? Feels like Jay is on that path but hoping a decent salsa/samba in Blackpool might do the job…
    Loving Georgia and Giovanni. Reminds me of Chelsee – offensive northerners-aren’t-they-delightfully-common VTs included- though Georgia is less of a surprise package.
    Dearly hoping that the recap of Katie’s rumba won’t uncover a revisit of that thing we’ve all blocked out from FF’s Westlife number. I would have to sew up my eyes.

    Reply
    1. monkseal Post author

      I believe Louis breakthrough was Charlestonm officially, which was week 9. Although Craig still only gave it an 8.

      Reply
  8. Miss Cavie

    I don’t know which was more cringeworthy – the 90’s neon hip hop oozing desperation from every pore, or Andre reaching peak “I love my kids” with added Cilla. Both of course were heinously overmarked.

    I thought Jay did OK with his contemporary waft-trot, but I guess the PERFORMANCE BREAKTHROUGH is scrpited for his Blackpool Charleston/Samba/Salsa whatever.

    Kudos to Anton for producing a Rumba that didn’t make me want to flee the room in embarassment. Katie is still clunky and awkward in anything resembling a lift, but that wasn’t bad as Rumbas go. Possibly also in the Blackpool script is ANTON GETS A TEN with full on Fred ‘n’ Ginge Hollywood Foxtrot (or they booted with a shitty Samba).

    Reply
    1. missfrankiecat

      I’d lay good money that Anton and a Hollywood Smooth pimp slot are on the cards for the Blackpool story board. I’m away this weekend where the bandwidth is too ropey to catch up on last night but looking forward to a grown up rumba and and an on-point Charleston.

      Reply
    2. monkseal Post author

      If Anton gets a 10… I dunno what will happen. It’ll involve the space-time continuum whatever it is.

      Reply
  9. Marcela

    I also agree with you Monkseal, Georgia’s Charleston was the best evah. FACT!
    That, of course, until Jay does his one where he’s going to gurn to high heaven and get the performance breakthrough everyone is expecting from him. Ah, and also four 10, obvs.

    Reply
  10. Pops

    I agree that Kellie and Kevin’s samba didn’t really work, but I did like the joke that his boom box was tuned to Radio 4, so that’s something.

    Reply
  11. dancing cake

    I have to admit to being really anti-Kellie by now but it’s obviously not just me who can smell the desperation. Just watched the last two dances again and realised that surprise, surprise, Kellie had positioned herself right behind Georgia for maximum “and me! ” effect .

    Reply
  12. Rose

    Thank you Monkseal for your entertaining recaps. Looking forward to the next one. πŸ™‚ (What are the posting rules, can I post my thoughts on the dances here)?
    So Week 11 will be Stage and Screen Night? What are the odds that we will get Dirty Dancing? πŸ˜€ It will be very tough to top Louis’ and Flavia’s routine from 2012.
    Dances:
    Jay. I couldn’t watch him live as usual, I get too nervous. When I did watch the dance I thought it was beautiful. A tiny misstep and Aliona elbowing him, but otherwise fine. I think Bruno “gets” Jay, so I hope Jay listens more to him than to Craig. As for Craig’s WTF score of 6, I think the same as the conspiracy theorists (deliberate underscoring etc). I also think Craig might be pi**y about Jay not wanting to go and hang out with him in the bar after the shows. I wonder if this is why Craig mentions the bar on the live shows. As for looks, Jay looked beautiful. But would it have been too much to ask of wardrobe to get him a waistcoat that didn’t gap, trousers that fit, and sewn-up pockets? 😦
    Georgia. Good. I’ll forgive her for shrieking this week since she got 10’s. (Note to self, be quicker with the mute button).
    Helen. Good. Not sure if Aljaz’s hand was supposed to be like that on her back.
    Kellie. Oh dear. Yet another horrid outfit that took the focus away from the dance. If I was Kellie I’d buy my own dresses in the future. Anything retail off the peg will be better than what she is getting from wardrobe.
    Anita. Good. I always like her routines. Very nice dress.
    Katie. Much better than expected.
    Jamelia. Poor Tristan. He looks like he’s thinking “help me, I don’t want to do another week” whenever they are waiting for the dance off. I feel so bad for him I even dreamt about him last night. 😦
    Jeremy. Not as entertaining as last week, I thought.
    Top 3 dresses IMO: Anita, Karen and Aliona.

    Reply
      1. Rose

        I sometimes mute Vicky too because of her giggling. πŸ™‚ Some of the fun of Strictly for me is looking at pretty dresses, if/when there are any.

  13. Ross

    Kind of hoping we get the Galactic Shirley Bassey Rumba as a Judges’ Choice in the final for Katie, with an American-Smooth-To-End-All-American-Smooths Showdance, and their Ultimate Melodrama Tango to finish it off; all that combined might *just* be enough to beat Georgia and Jay to the glitterball…

    …might.

    Reply
  14. BeyonceCastle

    Bah humbug, hated it last night, music choices flipping awful (ironically, awful keeps defaulting to Setup but that would means the producers wanted every bugger hobbled bar Anita and Georgia). The only thing that kept me going were your tweets Chris, namely boobs hashtag, M1 eyebrow and the Power of NPPLFHK (no pants pduh’s love for his Kids). I want Anita, Katie, Jay and Georgia in the final ( I did want to See NPP showdance but Georgia deserves it more).
    Want the rest out as follows….Kellie, Jeremy, Helen, Peter, Jamelia but know J+J will be gone as soon as judges get chance to get shot of them.

    Reply
  15. Sparklemotion

    Just watched that Charleston again and you might be right Monkseal…that lift! And the fact it showed you can Charleston without taking a specialist gurn module at SCD College, Rainbow Wig campus.

    Reply
  16. Perfect Custard

    I was thrilled with Katie and Anton’s very smooth & sophisticated Rumba – she looked really good out on the floor. And she was underscored. How they can give Kellie’s crackpot Hip hop Samba higher marks than Katie’s Bond Girl Rumba I will never understand.???

    Otherwise my two favourites did well – the G&G team were awesome with the Charleston.
    Georgia should win this year if it hadn’t already been decided that puppy dog Jay was the one.
    I liked Helen’s Tango and Anita’s whatever it was. Helen’s red dress was great. say what you will about the music choice, wardrobe loves Helen, Katie, and Anita.

    Peter Andre and that oozing false sincerity. (Cilla & Kids)
    Why does Peter get so over scored? I realize he’s one of the few men at this point but what is the deal? Why so much over scoring for him and underscoring for Katie?
    Any inside gossip on why or how the powers that be do what they do would be appreciated.

    Reply
    1. monkseal Post author

      In fairness, Len scored Katie’s rumba higher than Kellie’s samba and was also the only one not to have it lower than Peter’s V. Waltz, all hail Len.

      Reply
  17. BeyonceCastle

    I do wonder, I really do. He was probably a highly paid signing so they don’t want a Martina Hingis on their hands. Plus, with his background, they probably were expecting him to be better than he is and a decent all-rounder, when in fact he’s shaky in hold and jerky in the Latin seen so far. Janette has jive with him on Saturday and is clearly holding back salsa and samba to the end to try and get him through (in the same way Anton still has waltz and foxtrot left). Plus they think his fan base will help against X factor (hence more favourable slots overall) when, in fact, they are trouncing ITV anyway and his fan base might not be as strong as envisioned. He was heralded as the one to watch and beat from launch show onwards (last in titles, last to be paired, last to perform) and that was only called into question when it became clear he was “too pop” and Jay could dance. That said, Craig was tipping him, Jay and Kellie for the final a few days ago so we shall see. I would prefer to see Georgia and Anita than Bright/Orange.

    Reply
    1. monkseal Post author

      I’m not really sure that going last in the credits is much to be tooted about. Judy Moo was last last year.

      Reply

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