As with last year with the week of Peter Andre’s charleston, the show flipped the usual script this week, and instead of building towards a spectacular Pimp Slot performance, it opened with a bang from a frontrunner, and told every other contestant that followed to bring it to try to keep up. The bang in this case being Danny’s Jive, which features down low and dirty splits, high kicks, higher hair and the even higherest trousers. The highest trouser you be seen on a Saturday night outside of that singing show thing that’s happening on the other side. Still. Apparently.
One after one they line up with their swings and misses – 32 after 33 after 34 after 32. Daisy’s Viennese Waltz? Sweet, but the parpy parpy oompah music brings it down a notch. Ore’s salsa? Good natural ability being stifled by ugly awkward lifts and constant “let me stand still whilst Joanne flafs her skirt about” moments. Laura’s samba? Gives good drama and sass but Giovanni overdances her to a quite terrifying degree, all culminating in the end of the routine literally being the camera just focusing on him spinning as Laura goes off for a Stephanie Beacham memorial nice cup of tea and a sit down. Judge Rinder’s quickstep? Beautifully old-school and charming, but the judges have decided his Facial Expressions are an actual storyline that needs addressing now and give him demerits. Greg & Natalie’s Viennese Waltz? Impeccably dramatic and lovely swirling but I’ve never seen anyone look as seasick on this show as Greg did from about halfway through this one. Claudia’s paso doble? A really good routine (for the second week in a row to a potentially awkward song) and actually I think a touch undermarked, but Len has decided AJ needs a slap on the wrist for something or other so here we are. Ed’s quickstep? Another good effort from him, with a lovely turn of speed but…he’s still Ed Balls y’know? 6s and 7s are the limit there outside of a random Bruno fit (and maybe a Big Blackpool Overproduction Number?). All in all these routines are better than they sound when you’re comparing them directly to Danny and ticking them off for not coming up to his standard, but that’s how the night was structured so that’s what you have to do.
The one couple to match up to Danny’s jive tonight? Randomly (and terrifyingly) it’s Louise on the Argentine Tango as she finally (and unlike last week) *actually* cuts loose, ruffles her hair, pouts her lips, flips her Tupperware wide open and spills red wine on the beige hall rug and DOESN’T GIVE A SHIT ABOUT IT. It’s all very How Louise Got Her Groove Back suburban emancipation, and whilst the technique sometimes stutters a little, it’s great to see Louise finally do something to justify her place in the ranks of the frontrunners. She even actually reacts to her scores for the first time ever. The momentum this series just keeps switching up doesn’t it?