Strictly Come Dancing 16 – Week 5 Performance Summary

Remember how the problem last week was that everyone was kind of mediocre, and that, coupled with The Situation, made the show a muddy beige mess? Well NOT THIS WEEK. At the top of the leaderboard, we get two performances that feel like the audience have had a real jolt put up them, for the first time this series, and at the bottom we get three genuine Grade A trainwrecks.

So the two barnstormers? Both Danny and Charles deliver on their training footage in spades, both producing high energy throwback routines – Danny to The War with some primo GI style jive, and Charles back to the 70s with a James Brown soulboy routine – and both getting rapturous receptions from the audience. Danny’s gets the edge with the judges, with Darcey hauling out the first 10 of the series. For a year with so many ringahs, you’d think it would have come earlier.

At the other end? Compared to the effort put into Charles’ routine to get street dance over as a genre, Lauren gets a really grim contemporary routine for her Couples Choice, all Bonnie Tyler power fists, dumb lifts, walking about angstily and truly baffling moments where she pretends to be about to start to run coz she’s a runner innit? Seann’s quickstep is 100% energy and bluster to hide the fact he has no technique to speak of, at all, which is even more noticeable in quickstep than it was in jive and Charleston, and that’s even before we factor in some awkward guitarography and the fact that no, really, Katya has run out of special moves. (Either that or…they were Neil’s the whole time and he’s stopped dishing them out for…reasons). It’s Vick whose downfall is the most sharp though, as after the last few weeks of upswing, Graziano nukes her chances of winning from space with hands down the worst cha cha choreography I’ve ever seen on this show, all done to a terrible remix of a song that was already probably a bit too modern for this show’s audience. (In fairness, Dr Ranj’s American Smooth isn’t that much better, but it’s one of Janette’s usual 50s Housewife Routines and they all just wash over me at this point)

Elsewhere? Stacey and Graeme probably have the best night of it, with a samba and a tango respectively that deliver in terms of the character of both routines if not 100% with the technique. Joe holds his ship steady with a Very Nice Waltz that has some Definite Technical Improvement, although it’s starting to feel like they’re doing a Louis Smith with him and trying to sweep the fact he was getting multiple 8s in Week 2 under the rug so he can be a proper Jurnee Contestant. Kate unfortunately doesn’t quite have the comeback she needed after her samba, mostly because it feels like we’ve been to the “dance with my imaginary soldier boyfriend who is off doin’ a war” well too many times now, as much as she puts her full back into acting it out at the level of Dr Hamela. Oh and our ringers? They’re still going, with Ashley doing a good (albeit thrashy and accidental lift studded) rumba and Faye doing a good American Smooth comma foxtrot (albeit with her hands vibrating the entire time like she’s mid-comedown). In terms of motivating a vote though? It’s finally looking like they might have to get a move on and do something sensational rather than nipping around one another’s edges.

(Oh and Carlton’s here as guest judge. He was on Dancing With The Stars, but they hardly mention it)

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18 thoughts on “Strictly Come Dancing 16 – Week 5 Performance Summary

  1. jgcameron1992

    For me Dr Ranj was the worst, too cheesey! There was at least one good thing about everyone else.

    Incredible show though tonight considering last weeks mess. Can’t argue too much with the leader board (although I would have thrown Kate and Joe a few more points and Ranjie a few less).

    Less graziano next year please and more Neil.

    Reply
  2. ChaChaChavvy

    What gorgeous dogs Lauren’s family has. I was quite disappointed they weren’t the inspiration for an interpretive routine about life as a couple of Alsatians. (Running, running, running, running for my Bonio. Let’s wee on a tree.) I bet contemporary is dropped like a stone by next year.

    Reply
    1. monkseal Post author

      I think it depends whether Ashley picks it and does something TRANSCENDENT MARVELOUS WONDERFUL ORIGINAL GROUNDBREAKING ONE-OF-A-KIND BEAUTIFUL ARTISTIC or if she decides she’s gonna just copy what Faye just did again and do Musical Theatre.

      Reply
  3. Marcela

    I thought Ashley’s Rumba was a bit frantic. A bit more contrast would be good, it felt too rushed. I didn’t like Faye’s FT either. Once a series Gio does a routine that I look at and think “Bit odd this, love”. There was some kind of weird moves in the middle (bopping?) that I didn’t get it.To me she’s this year’s Louise: competent but bland and forgettable.

    I loved Danny, finally a breakthrough but some timing issues and he was a bit gassed towards the end. Charles will be saved this week, unfortunately, because I can’t stand the whole Idris Lite schtick. Can’t wait for the full recap

    Reply
    1. thespb01

      I don’t think it helps with Faye that, Quickstep aside, she’s been given boring dance styles. I’m guessing Giovanni’s saving the good stuff for when it matters.

      Reply
  4. Fish Pie

    While we’re getting predictable boots every week, Strictly France has just had the equivalent of a Faye v Ashley DO in week 4.

    Reply
  5. Huriye

    Summed it up nicely, as always, there Monkseal. I voted for Charles, Danny and Stacey, mostly because I enjoyed their routines, they were entertaining, and Charles’s VT made me cry. 😿
    Honourable mentions – and if I wasn’t on a tight budget I’d have used my phone to vote for them – go to Joe’s charming Waltz (I saw Pashpot clapping approvingly and nodding at his excellent technique) and Graeme’s sultry Tango. Oh, the joy of having 2 female pros in Oti and Dianne who can teach their celeb to dance Ballroom correctly.

    Dr Ranj needs to close his mouth and use a different form of facial expression. But as usual, for a Janette Ballroom, we got 3 seconds of the stiffest hold before breaking out into the usual little clichéd moves. So stilted! Compare that to the majesty of Faye’s Foxtrot, all movement, sway and elegance. Faye is definitely winning the Ringah off for me. That was a beautiful routine, I loved the Autumn splendour of the set, and that song is one of my faves. The bit in the middle was Joe Varney expressing their love in choreography, but it was a little ditzy compared to the sophistication of in hold.

    I genuinely was so pleased that the Street was a proper routine, with choreography, props, musicality, and interaction between the couple, not just hip hop gestures as I was expecting, and don’t enjoy. Hats off to the choreographers, and especially Charles who captured the loose feel of 70s Huggy Bear off Starsky & Crutch to perfection. I didn’t even notice Karen. And Yay to the band, that tune was banging! More 70s innit! The best decade for music Evah!

    I don’t follow him but my Twitter timeline threw up James Jordan slagging off the new Italian pro. Frankly I think there needs to be a few Pro line up changes, or else stop having a predominantly Ballroom based show, because quite a few can’t dance it much less teach it.
    I see Kevin did a retro Samba with every required move known to man in answer to his Dance Sport teacher who was giving him a hard time on Twitter! When Shirl said that was a “Basic routine” she meant it as a huge compliment but no one clapped. Pity it wasn’t the Blackpool audience. That was the best Samba since Pixie & Trent’s.

    The clueless audience did annoy me a bit, when they whoop and holler for every minute hop and lift Janette did in that duff AS, I just think, ‘Oh do shut up!’

    Oh, and the bloke from DWTS was good. Make it permanent.

    Reply
  6. fromrusholmewithlove

    Never knowingly having heard a Steps song, I treated myself to a little wibble round the internet last night. As far as I can tell, the most ‘dancey’ Faye has ever got is executing an isolated shoulder shrug: she can shrug ONE SHOULDER AT A TIME. Am I missing something? Why is she a ringer?.

    Reply
    1. monkseal Post author

      From the Official Steps website :

      “Faye trained at the Anne Gale School of Dance where she achieved advanced qualifications in all aspects of dance, including Ballet, Tap and Modern. After her A-levels she then began dancing professionally with the Belinda King Dancers for two years and sang at the Hilton Hotel Park Lane London until joining the international pop phenomenon that was STEPS.”

      She’s a ringah baby.

      Reply
  7. Jane

    Lauren and AJ’s contempo-crap was truly extraordinary. I know comparisons with other legendary dances tend to court controversy, but for me the level of toe-curling watch-through-your-fingers cringe-tastic awfulness was up there with Snowdance.

    Reply

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