Anastaciagate and beyond.
Zoe Lays Down The Law : The show started with Zoe, dressed all in black, telling us no really, that they definitely have rules written down somewhere, and she’s seen them, and they definitely say that what happened on Sunday Night was what was supposed to happen in these circumstances. Would Zoe Ball lie to you? Ask yourself that question.
Melvin & Janette : Janette also in her interview made it very clear that she also saw the rules and they had to abide by them, and it’s nobody’s fault, and hey, have you all heard Melvin’s impersionation of his mother tum ti tum. As for Melvin, everyone agrees that he was very gracious about his departure, and if he’d like to check the rules for himself he can find them online at http://www.hrrnfrrf*cough*cough*.com. HEY LOOK, HERE’S MAMA MANRARA!
ISN’T SHE CUTE! We also learnt that Melvin has made FRIENDS FOR THE LIFE with both Tameka and Ore, and Zoe offered to let Melvin come round to her house to show her personally what his routine for next week would have been. This is how rumours get started.
Backstage This Week :
Anastacia has friends, she definitely has friends, friends friends friendly friends, who cares about a danceoff? (COOL!) (In all seriousness Anastacia and Louise at least are close because I saw them gabbing the whole way through the live shows)
Celebrity Tweeting Corner : Gemma Collins likes Judge Rinder.
Louise & Kevin :
Honestly truly either Louise has just come from painting the living room (MEGAMUM!), or she’s actively trolling people with these outfits now. This was again a very nice safe interview from Louise, although there was a dry moment of subversion from her and Kevin as they chuckled that oddly enough it turned out that spending the day Zorbing didn’t really help her balance and poise in the Viennese Waltz. Zoe also brought us a Stat Attack illustrating that Louise has the third best ever start for a girlband member on Strictly (only behind Alesha “36 On Her Second Dance” Dixon and Emma “Overmarked And Loving It” Bunton) and we were informed that Jamie is already poking head into the training room, so get ready for that VT. Her dance this week is the cha cha.
Karen’s Khoreography Korner : On today’s Khoreography Korner, Karen went into raptures about Laura’s beautiful head position in her waltz, hacked me off by using my least favourite word in reference to buttocks to talk about Greg (“pert” – seriously, it’s like “moist”, it goes right through me), quoted Dirty Dancing in relation to Ed Balls for probably not the last time, expressed a desire to give Naga a great big hug and wrap her in cotton wool (and by extension have her eyes scratched out), and finally gave admiration to Anastacia for learning a routine (ish) in one day, when in the real world of ballroom, professionals have the same sold routine for up to 5 years. Longer even, in the case of “when I won with Ramps”.
Danny & Oti : Distresingly, Danny appears to be going even further down the patented Abbey Clancy “ME NERRRRRRRRRRRRRVES” road, which somebody needs to tell him to snap out off. Preferably Oti. With a big stick. Oti also marvelled happily that Len liked that their routine had a modern choice, like he has any choice these days. The last routine on this show that didn’t have a “modern twist” was in 2011. Unless you count Every Kevin Clifton Routine. Also there was a training VT that featured Oti pinching Danny and saying things like “oh he’s been melodramtic, I’m not really hurting him”. I feel this could have come across better. His dance this week is the paso doble.
Naga & Pasha : A lot of this interview was given over to entirely sincere talk about how much everyone just *loved* Naga’s wig on Saturday. It was GREAT. Social Media in particular were GUSHING about how BEAUTIFUL it was. Naga was particularly sad about having to give it back because it accidentally got Diet Coke spilled on it, then set on fire oops. We also learned that Pasha has CRACKED THE CODE regarding why the judges give different scores for the dances. It’s because they’re watching it from different angles! Bless Pasha, so innocent. Finally Naga got the Stat Attack of the episode, which rubbed in her face that she’d got of to the worst start of any BBC Breakfast affiliate other than Carol Kirkwood. Yes, even crotchety old beekeeper Bill Turnbull got off the blocks faster. Naga looked THRILLED by this news I can tell you. Their dance this week is the tango.
Tunes On Tuesday : The jukebox revealed (before we all ran to the website to check out the full list) that Joanne & Ore got a plum draw for their American Smooth with Singing In The Rain, Louise & Kevin got an exciting draw in terms of costumes (ie her not wearing a smock) with What A Feeling and that we ALL got a great draw with Tameka & Gorka as they got The Heat Is On from Beverly Hills Cop. Yes, that’s right, Policeman Gorka. I am ready. Also as if we didn’t already know we determined that
Pasha can give POWERFUL Woobie Face
Pro Dance Rehearsals : Bill Deamer dropped in via pre-record to let us all know that this week our pro routine will be themed around the musicals of Rogers & Hammerstein, with tributes to The Sound Of Music, Carousel, The King And I, and Oklahoma. I’m looking forward to a pro dance! For the first time in…longer than I can remember! Also Kevin sang. Kevin should not sing.
Karen’s Khoreography Korner : PART TWO! A bumper crop with Karen tonight as she ploughed through everyone she didn’t get through yesterday. Along the way we contrasted the strengths of the Viennese Waltzes of Danny (THE POWAH) and Louise (THE FOOTWORK) and Karen praised Lesley Joseph for “asserting her own energy” with Anton. Yes I bet she does. She also agreed with the judges that Tameka needed more swivel and that Claudia was over-extending, and interestingly enough said that there was an easy enough way that Aljaz could have kept Daisy’s feet on the floor during their “lift” and he just chose not to. Then, in a rare moment of 100% solid content Karen told us all how Judge Rinder doing an excess of heel leads led to his American Smooth looking stop-starty, before returning to…more typical Karen climes by saying that Ore’s arms were too fluffy in his cha cha and then assessing Will’s jive by saying that Rhythm Is A Regular Recurrence Of…Thingummy Doo-Dah, I lost interest mid sentence.
Ed & Katya : We closed on Ed & Katya, with Katya looking styled like Princess Diana picked the set designers of The Adventure Game to make her wedding dress. The segment was almost entirely about him feeling the love from the audience at home and in the studio for his charleston, and then him subtly shading individuals he didn’t deem worthy (Widdy, George Osbourne) by immediately talking about the praise of someone else (Darcey, Theresa May) when Zoe tried to get him to talk about how pleased he was to receive their backing. Once a politician, always a politician. He also subtly came for Craig, saying he was most surprised that Craig scored his Charleston lower than his waltz when it was clearly better. It was. And so the Ed Balls Spin Express picks up speed. His dance this week is the samba.
Anastacia & Brendan : AND HERE THEY ARE! A little subdued, feeling a little awkward with one another to discuss the events of the weekend. You will be surprised to learn that Anastacia was shocked that she was higher in the public vote than Melvin and also surprised to learn that it’s quite clear that Anastacia has obviously not watched one second of this show before appearing on it, as she spoke about the whole “…erm…IT GOES TO PUBLIC VOTE!” (*blows ink dry on copy of parchment marked “The Rules”*) business like it probably happens all the time, she doesn’t know SHE’S AMERICAN, SHE JUST GOT HERE Y’ALL! Their dance this week is the Viennese Waltz, to that “A Thousand Years” song from Twilight. Brenda decided to win friends and influence people by all but saying the show’s audience are too decrepit to have heard of it, but it’s this really hip movie the kids all just LOVE. He also said they’ve probably never heard the song before. KIMBOT DANCED TO IT THREE FLIPPING TIMES BRENDA. I know Pendledrama had you…busy that series but still.
Greg & Natalie : A lot of arse talk here, as Greg expressed surprise that ANYONE would EVER want to talk about his arse, like he hasn’t got it out for pretty much whatever gay mag has asked. In truly monumentous news, it turns out that Greg’s anus trending on twitter has led Natalie to change their official Team Name from “Team Gregalie” to “Team Legs & Bum”. Might I suggest “Team Tits & Arse” instead? (Why don’t they get me to pick all the team names, I’d be great at it). It was also brought to Greg’s attention that he is the latest male contestant who Sir Matthew Bourne is trying to pick u…I mean the latest male contestant who Sir Matthew Bourne really deeply admires. Greg seemed flattered, also kind of like he didn’t know who he was.
Waite’s Wednesday Warm Up : Today’s Warm Up covered 8 of our remaining contestants. Daisy (quickstep) needs to sit more deeply into Aljaz’s lap, whilst Tameka (tango) needs to stop clinging to Gorka’s torso like she’s a koala. Or me. (Also Tameka needs to start doing the tango, no offence). Naga’s tango is also going poorly as she’s not even bending her legs yet. Which is, y’know 90% of the point of the tango. Laura’s salsa rehearsal caused Ian and Zoe to remenisce over how difficult salsa is for tall women, even though Zoe never did one (SALSAMBCHA!). Both Rinder (Shoeless Charleston) and Danny looked a little too overexcited for Ian, with Danny somehow contriving to introduce bounce action into a paso doble. Finally Ore (American Smooth) needs to pay more attention to his extremities (I’LL HELP!) and Ian is officially at this point predicting that Cloudia (Charleston) will top the leaderboard this weekend. And will put money on it.
Lesley & Anton : Forget Anastacia’s injury, the most concerning development this week was the fact that Anton turned up UNSHAVEN. AGAIN. Can someone please run and check that he’s not living out of his car? Did some sort of timeshare fall through? Is this why he’s had to come back this series, even though Katie Derham was clearly designed as his last hoorah? Regardless this was another joyful interview with Lesley doing most of the talking and clearly having the time of her life, saying that she knows she goes too far on the dancefloor but she JUST DOESN’T CARE. What an inspiration.
Rinder & Oksana : I’m currently working on a theory that these two are not in fact a contestant and pro, but instead a ventriloquist and dummy, at least based on their It Takes Two appearances. There’s something very Keith Harris & Orville about the constant “And what do you think Oksana?” and the “Isn’t that so Oksana?” between them, and the fact that their sentences never ever overlap. Look carefully and I’m fairly sure you’ll see his hand up her skirt, bank on it. Otherwise discussion was mostly of the lifts in their American Smooth, and how lucky they were that they went off succesfully as, as Zoe put it “we’re not sure we have anybody in reserve to replace Oksana” should she get broken. Somewhere off at the side Chloe weeps into her Cindy lunchbox. Oh and also Judge Rinder implied that Craig cruises building sites for sex. The saga continues. His dance this week is a Charleston.
Waite’s Thursday Thumbs Thup Today’s round of training began with Zoe saying that she was reminded of Ian when watching The Night Manager this last spring. The poorly drawn overacting villainous gay sidekick character? NO! TOM HIDDLESTON! In terms of training, Will (salsa/Bollywood) looks on course for another trousers based disaster as he’s performing in harem pants, Louise (cha cha) got her first official “DOESN’T SHE LOOK LIKE A PROFESSIONAL WINK WINK” of the series, Anastacia (Viennese Waltz) got very ginger “this looks crap but possibly because of her injury maybe I don’t know don’t look at me” treatment, Ed (samba) got a very gentle suggestion he sort his bloody arms out, and Lesley (Quickstep) and Greg (American Smooth) both got hit with classic Wednesday’s Wednesday Warm Up complaints. Gapping! and A THUMB RIGHT UP IN HIS FOXTROT! respectively.
Cloudia & AJ : AJ got a lot of focus tonight, as he got in an Innuendo Count classic with “In practice I said “let’s go for it” and whacked it out” (he was talking about a nearly-lift. I think.), and sat not a little awkwardly through a discussion of precisely which Disney Prince he is. Flynn Rider? Aladdin? Peter Pan? King Arthur In The First 20 Minutes Of The Sword In The Stone Before His Voice Breaks? One of the above. AJ also got to weigh in on which judge was right in terms of whether Claudia was hyperextended or not (SPOILERS : the one who said she wasn’t) AND tell us about how his parents were in the studio last week. Probably with Cloudia’s dad following them around the whole time muttering under his breath and checking to see if they drive a nice car and look like decent folk. Her dance this week is a Charleston.
LET’S GET FUCKED WITH VICKY GILL : Cloudia will be wearing a blue dress this weekend
Tameka & Gorka : MORE injury drama here, as Tameka talked about nearly going arse-over-tit off the stage at the Inside Soap Awards. And indeed I have first hand testimony from a…blog associate that it was spectacular. Apparently this is affecting her tango training, as she’s been having trouble with her knees as a result, and tango is a dance that requires constant bent knees. Gorka decided to demonstrate this by getting down on his knees and shuffling around on the floor, which I am very much in favour of, for the record. Also apparently she has a phobia of being leapfrogged by Gorka. Again, I would not have the same issue. Gorka The Corka Count : 3 for the episode.
Gethin’s Backstage Adventures : Yes, apparently we’re getting Gethin every week now, trawling backstage, havin’ adventures, and occasionally stumbling across
terrifying monsters like whatever’s living on Kevin’s head. Kevin’s growing on me again (I know, I know, so fickle) but if this is some sort of covert sign that he’s supporting Donald Trump, I’m agin him again. Gethin also encountered Danny & Oti, and discovered they are quite happy to do only one hour of training on any given day (SUPER MEGA ULTRA RINGAH) and also got trapped in a fairly excruciating three-way banter slapfight with Pasha and Brendan in which I’m surprised anybody came out alive.
Ore & Joanne : As YouGov release their own private polling revealing that Ore is operating at popularity levels on this show somewhere between Augusto Pinochet and whoever got rid of the separate Lemon and Lime Starburst (FUCK YOU BLACKCURRENT), he appeared on It Takes Two dressed as an Eddie Murphy character. People still like him right? RIGHT? Everybody loved (*checks imdb*) “A Thousand Words” (?). A lot of the interview focused on Ore’s adventures in pole dancing in his cha cha, with everyone very pleased that he didn’t pull the entire set down around his head and Zoe having to confirm via fact-check that there has never been a fireman’s pole on this show before (and there never will be again). Still Joanne was pleased that it all pleased Len. Just Len. And that only for storyline purposes. Their dance this week is the American Smooth.
The Friday Panel : It comes to something when a Friday Panel leads you to long for the air of excitement, tension and controversy that only Daniel O’Donnell can provide. The panelists this week were Sam & Mark and Sophie Ellis Bextor, with Sophie doing her best “I was somewhat popular on the show for a bit, please heed my words when I tell you that Anastacia is lovely and she and Brendan love one another like brother and sister or Princess Margaret and gin shooters” job. We also learnt that she loves Mary Poppins and The Great Gatsby. None of this was any great surprise. Sam and Mark were more or less of a similar level of usefulness, although somewhere in the spinning of the globe I started fancying Sam more than Mark. How things change (I still don’t fancy either of JK & Joel at all, I checked). Speaking of which, at some point Mark managed to proposition every single halfway decent looking man currently on the show and also Anton which…explains how he got his start in kids tv anyway. Everyone is tickety boo and marvellous (apart from Naga who they Do. Not. Like) especially Ore, who is their best mate apparently. When asked who was going to be eliminated there was one vote for Naga and one vote for Lesley and one vote for “PLEASE NOT ANASTACIA, SHE’S EVER SO NICE SHE SMELLS OF WATERMELON!!!”. This Friday Panel also meant we get to start this :
The Totaliser Of People Who The Guests Say They Want To Win So People Can Whinge On The Internet About Favourirism Totaliser :
Ore Oduba : 2
Anastacia Probably : 1
Laura & Giovanni : I am sad to inform you that Laura is falling into the early stages ofThoopafan Fever. She’s so totally in the zone during every performance she doesn’t even realise the audience is there any more. She’s crying all the time, often for absolutely no reason. She’s learning phrases in her pro partner’s native language and not remembering she should probably give a translation at some point. In short, don’t be surprised if within a few weeks time she’s running around constantly hoiking her boobs, implying everyone else is overmarked, and preparing for her very own Snowdance. We’re on the track ladies and gents!
Great Movie Moments : A section wherein Ian was dressed as James Bond blowing on a golden shoe (?) and took us through the greatest moments from Strictly Movie Weeks past. With the show’s usual attention to detail, all of the dances (bar Scott Mills as a lobster) were either from last year or Series 8 (in fact HALF of the dances from Series 8’s Movie Week were referred to, and probably the only reason they left off Dr Hamela staring off into space is because James Jordan has been airbrushed out of show history officially now). The segment did not, however, feature Shirtless Spaceman Pasha once, so it was a COMPLETE waste of time and a load of old bollocks frankly.
Daisy & Aljaz : Daisy was introduced with Zoe telling us that she’s been part of some of the MOST ELITE FASHON CAMPAIGNS IN THE WORLD, and then came on aand tried to pass off how normal and relatable and just like us she all is. Which didn’t entirely come off, but I like her anyway so P’NEURR. More importantly we also covered Liftgate, like anyone cares about that any more when we all know that Anastacia literally carved off three fingers with a butcher knife to avoid doing the Dance-Off, all whilst cackling madly and shouting “YOU CAN’T ELIMINATE ME, I HAD TIT CANCER!” (Source : The Daily Star and the Strictly Come Dancing Facebook Page). Anyway, this was a great excuse for Aljaz to look naughty.
I approve this message. Aljaz also laughed at one point at the pun on his chyron after he caught sight of it on camera (again : adorable), and Daisy told us that actually the lift was supposed to be bigger and MORE outrageous, but she mucked it up and it ended up dinky. Which only makes me love her more. Their dance this week is the quickstep.
Karen & Will : Karen spent this entire segment eating popcorn on camera. Karen likes eating a lot on Theme Weeks I’ve noticed. Not sure if it’s her way of numbing the pain of having to roll around on the floor whilst Mark Wright runs around with a red tablecloth stapled to his back pretending to be Superman. There was a lot of talk of Will’s injury, which depending on who you listen to was either to his left glute, his left cheek, or his left bum. Or if you listen to Tess it was to his LUNGS, HE’S GONNA DIE, CALL AN AMBULANCE CALL THE POLICE! Will did rather snarkily suggest he was faking his injury the entire time for sympathy votes which…interpret that as you will, I’m saying nothing. There was some brief froo-fraw over Craig giving Will a 5 (Will is apparently going to send him a scented candle as a bribe) and also Zoe saying that Will should be in safe hands this week, as Karen is a “salsa specialist”. SALSAMBCHAMBO!
Chloe & Neil : We closed the show with Chloe and Neil finally getting their turn to rampage around the abandoned carpark with the gold Nissan Micra. We didn’t learn an awful lot, other than that Neil thinks he’s quirky (so looking forward to that) and that Chloe says “whole notha level” a LOT in a way that’s kind of adorable, but only because I know someone’s about to sit down backstage with her and tell her to stop it, like they did with Darcey’s “yah” way back when. Chloe also promised us, for the second week running, LOTS OF PROPS IN ALL THE PRO DANCES, in a way that has led me to confirm within myself that they’re just trolling us on this now.