But why stop at a double elimination? Let’s take out three of these bastards next week! OR EVEN FOUR!
Brooke & Matej : So that long stint of Brooke being on at the end of the show every week came to a crashing halt this week, when they put her on at the start. Oh and this was also the week they opened the lines at the start of the show for absolutely no reason. Not that I’m suggesting they need to keep Brooke around as long as possible to keep the coveted Pervy Dad demographic still keyed in. Ah who am I kidding, they’ll do the vote reveal at the end of the series and it’ll turn out she was getting 90% of the vote every epsiode because she’s in CORREH. To give Brooke her due, she rose admirably to the challenge of Being Competent this week, as she actually managed to perform this week’s JUDGES CHALLENGE (which was skating without clinging on to your partner for the entire length of the ice rink) (yes, the new ice rink, for this series, the one that Greg Rutherford could leap over without much of a run-up) better than pretty much everyone else on the show other than Jake, given that most of them only did half a length or stumbled over repeatedly. What a talented cast you guys! Imagine if Cheryl were still here, they’d have been trying to detach her dentures from Dan’s forearm for days afterwards. Matej managed to choreograph sympathetically as well, with a jazz hands Charleston-y sort of routine that allowed for plenty of room for wobbling artistically. Speaking of which, demerits for Brooke repeatedly making out that her nan is an alcoholic, because that’s just rude. It also needs pointing out, that Jayne giving this a whole 0.5 points lower than the other three is the only difference of opinion amongst the judges all evening. ALL OF THEM. The Torville/Dean Hive Mind is REAL.
Alex & Brianne : A real disparate mish-mash of elements with Alex & Brooke this week, although mercifully we did get through the entire episode without a sob story so that’s a start. A routine with a Brief Encounters theme, complete with luggage props, to a Tropical House song, featuring the famous lift from Dirty Dancing (if the famous lift from Dirty Dancing involved Patrick Swayze holding Jennifer Grey much higher up on her body, and also if Jennifer Grey had been crossing her legs like she was really trying to avoid pissing herself) and also some very late 90s hip hops shapes, it all felt a bit like it was trying to appeal to all generations, and didn’t really land on any specifically, but that’s our Brioche I guess! Whatever it was it was enough to get Alex through to next week somehow, despite the fact that Alex did a massive stumble, and also despite Phillip asking him “What’s harder? Piers Morgan or Dancing On Ice?” after which point the nation spent the next 15 minutes liberally vomitting before resuming watching. And that’s valuable voting time!
Max & Ale : Poor Max though, found himself in the Bottom 3, from 2nd on the leaderboard as we finally found out which of the four fairly interchangable hunks is the least popular with the public. Whether this is down to a long term embedded lack of popularity, or a situational thing because the VT for this pairing this week featured Max storming off because of how difficult the Judges Challenge was (/because he needed a poo) who can say? Certainly Max couldn’t have shown that level of unprofessionalism in his previous life as a model, Thom was already having to fluff that damn thing up enough as it was without his scene partner having to go off and have an artistic moment (/poo). It’s a shame, because Max’s routine this week was glorious cheese – all skating around looking earnest with bare arms to Bon Jovi and desperately trying to emote through his face. I mean…it didn’t work, but you could see he was working muscles he hadn’t tried to use in a long time and frankly I thought that deserved more recognition. Still Max was stoic about his disappointment (probably happy enough that he’s now officially done much better than Thom did on Strictly, not that that would be difficult) putting everything that happens to him down to the fact that he’s a Virgo. That’s right, the Virgin. And Thom’s an Aries, making him a Ram. Write it better, I dare you.
Anthony & Brandee : The evil is defeated! And all it took was a triple skate-off! Having teased it since Week 1, and having failed to get a rise out of the implacable Jayne Torvill last time, Anthony declared all out war on Jason Gardiner this week, squeaking that THE GLOVES ARE OFF and I WON’T BE TOLD WHAT TO DO and JASON DOESN’T KNOW WHAT A STAR TURN LOOKS LIKE (ooh burn) before full on yelling “THE AUDIENCE KEEP ON VOTING ME IN, IT’S NOT MY FAULT I’M SO POPULAR!” right down his face at the judges panel. And never let it be said that the British Public couldn’t take up a challenge to promote irony, so off he popped. Much to Brandee’s relief based on her face when they were called into the bottom 2. Not that she was trying to get rid of him herself you understand, passing him through a really basic routine to some forgotten piece of 70s kitsch ephemera, in which he dressed from head to toe in nigh-on unbearable neon pink and spent most of the time riding around on top of a hostess trolley pretending to be a flight attendant. Ah well, at least he didn’t call anyone “toots”. Or “babes”.
Kem & Alex : Now whilst I do still have these two as my favourite, it would be remiss of me not to mention that I actually forgot both of their names for a good five minutes whilst watching the show this week, and had to wait for a cue from one of the presenters to put it together. Invested! This week Kem was in full on gurn mode as he was skating around basically just skating around groping Alex’s boobs and arse (can I point out that now a full 30% of the people remaining in the copetition are called Alex in some way shape or form? Diversity!) whilst pulling outlandish, and frankly orgasmic faces to Justin Bieber. Presumably in some attempt to provide counter-programming for everyone in black doing #MeToo at the BAFTAs on the other side. As with Weatherman Alex, Kem also stumbled this week, and it also didn’t matter, and Kem also revealed that if he could body-swap with any of the judges, it would be Jason, because he can do the splits, or Ashley Banjo, because he is tall, and Kem is not. Notice he wouldn’t attempt to steal the bodies of either Jayne or Chris, because if he did, their combined terrifying psychic powers would send him into the Sunken Place for the rest of his miserable life.
Donna & Mark : After shaking off Lemar last week, the show decided that frankly, they’d had enough of Donna Air’s nonsense as well, sending her out for yet another ethereal waft-around to an edit of “Frozen” by Madonna that was pretty much just the bit where she goes “hmmmmmmmmmmmm” over and over again (which would have been bad enough if she hadn’t been lip-sync’ing for her life for most of it, making her frankly look a bit constipated), and blatantly ignoring the part where this week she was supposed to, y’know, skate on her own for a bit. Far be it from me to suggest this change of priorities vis a vis Donna is associated with her giving an interview to the press this week saying “oh oops wait, I stopped banging the future king’s brother-in-law somewhere around Christmas did I not mention that when you cast me tee hee” but here we are. Also apparently she’s doing The Tour, and she’s really really looking forward to it. Mark seemed…less excited.
Jake & Vanessa : ITV went all in this week with their attempts to improve the show’s flagging ratings, as Jake Quickenden this week attempted (and succeeded!) in carrying out Dancing On Ice’s Signature Move, The HEADBANGER! This officially leaves the other men (because let’s face it, Brooke ain’t doing it) with three weeks to grab their partner by the ankle and shake them up and down like an umbrella after a light shower. Unfortunately, the brief blip of excitement prompted by a life-threatening move was somewhat flattened by the fact that Jake was skating this week to “Let Me Entertain You”. Yes “Let Me Entertain You”. I’m surprised that the ceiling didn’t open and drop a load of balloons congratulating Jake on performing reality tvs 1000th performance to “Let Me Entertain You”. Enough with “Let Me Entertain You” already! In Jake’s VT you played both “You Spin Me Round” AND “X Gon Give It To Ya”! Do a routine to one of them instead! NO! MORE! LET ME! ENTERTAIN YOU! EVER!