Top 12: 22nd October 2011
Last week, The Voice of Tess informs us, the stars gave their regards to Broadway. Whether Broadway expressed the same sentiment in return is, at this moment in time, still to be determined. Some couples were declared a must-see, while others were critically panned, and ultimately Dan and Katya were eliminated, leaving Dan to run off and cry to anyone who would listen that it was all about gimmicks and props these days and that he'd clearly been focusing too much on the dancing which...would not be the opinion of anyone who'd actually seen him dance, I'd wager. This week, it's back to ballroom basics, which for some reason are illustrated by a close-up shot of a bull, and Jason twatting around Tesco in a cheap-looking cape. "For our dozen, it's getting dirty," Tess opines. But who will be getting a clean sweep with the judges, and who'll just be a muckraker? This is Strictly Come Dancing 2011!
Titles! I love how Nancy looks confused and overwhelmed even in the five seconds' worth of footage she gets in this sequence.
We're live from Television Centre, and we have a Bruce, and a Tess, and...DEAR GOD, WHAT IS TESS WEARING? I mean, I know we do the Daly Dresswatch every week and display some level of disapproval on matters sartorial, but this is a new low. It's a Vimto-coloured full-length figure-hugging dress with black slashes across it and some sort of Nefertiti-esque gold ring around her neck. I swear it is not a word of a lie when I say that my Twitter timeline was pretty much enveloped with screams of "WHAT THE FUCK IS THAT?" when she first appeared. I'm afraid I can't answer that question, but I have a feeling it may be here to claim our firstborn children, and I recommend we do not look directly at it.
Bruce welcomes us, and we see that Widdy is in the audience tonight. Is it just me, or has she lost a bit of weight? Bruce perves about bumping into Holly backstage. This will be nowhere near the least tasteful thing he'll say tonight, just so you're prepared. Tess reminds us that Dan is no longer with us, but we still have 12 couples to look after this week. Bruce babbles a lot of unnecessary filler and Tess looks vaguely uncomfortable throughout. I'm no Tess Daly apologist, but Bruce is becoming such a liability during these off-script segments that I think it would test the skills of even the most confident ad-libber to look calm next to him. Eventually, after Tess has suggested that tonight's couples are "good to go" and Bruce has screamed "WE DON'T WANT THEM TO GO!" in her face like some drunken uncle, it's time to meet the stars of our show: your designated comedy contestant Russell Grant and his partner Flavia Cacace, the former caked in so much make-up it's a wonder his entire head hasn't slipped down into his ribcage with the excess weight; singing abomination Bloody Lulu and her long-suffering partner Brendan Cole; "comedian" and "impressionist" Rory Bremner and his partner Erin Boag, who seems to have checked out of the entire thing and might well spend tonight mentally planning her next haircut; future Daisy Duck impersonator Chelsee Healey and her partner PASHA KOVALEV (*swoon*); stealth show subverter Holly Valance and her partner Artem Chigvintsev; It's Hard For A Tall Person Like Audley Harrison and his partner Dame Natalie Lowe; my future husband Harry Judd and his partner/millstone Aliona Vilani; permanently overexcited Anita Dobson and her partner Robin Windsor; live-action Sindy doll Robbie Savage and his partner Ola Jordan; total loon Nancy Dell'Olio and her partner Anton Du Beke; the increasingly endearing Alex Jones and her increasingly toolish partner James Jordan; and finally, runner-up to Gary Barlow in World's Most Boring Man 2011 Jason Donovan and his partner Kristina Rihanoff. Look at them all, aren't they lovely?
Bruce cracks an impenetrable joke about "eyes and teeth" before he and Tess explain the scoring system to anyone who hasn't witnessed the previous eight series [it's a theatrical motto - eyes, tits and teeth, as mentioned by Sheila Hancock - Carrie], and we're reminded that Future Head Judge Karen Hardy is available on red button commentary as always, and this week she's joined by former contestant and pioneering lady-caper Kelly Brook. Ah, Kelly Brook. She really was quite good. By rights, the series five final should've been Alesha vs Kelly. I mean, that never would have happened even if Kelly hadn't had to drop out, but still, the version in my head is amazing. Bruce yells crazy old man things at Karen and Kelly, and Karen and Kelly smile and nod, which is pretty much all you can do.
Up first are Jason and Kristina, going in the front-half of the show for the very first time. When a frontrunner who's generally been saved until near the end is suddenly shoved on first, it often means a bit of a turnaround in their fortunes - will that be the case this week? Let's find out. In his VT, Jason says that he was overwhelmed by the judges last week because even grumpy old Len had a big smile on his face. We're reminded of Len calling him "the midwife, because you keep delivering". I suppose that's better than being called the midwife because you show up after several hours of pushing and grunting and demand to look at someone's cervix. It hasn't escaped Jason's attention that he's been top of the leaderboard for three weeks in a row, and he's going to dig deeper to maintain that. What this means in reality is that he will prepare for his paso doble - which he admits he's finding a bit of a struggle - by donning a comedy Spaniard outfit and running around the Edgware Road branch of Tesco Metro (I've been in there a few times, so I totally recognise it) and running around like he's on his way to audition for an Old El Paso advert. He harasses various shoppers, all of whom look entirely unimpressed. Meanwhile, Kristina is in what looks very much like the James Street branch of La Tasca (I've been there as well) wondering why her partner is fart-arsing around the supermarket and not meeting her for their scripted VT hilarity as expected. I note that Kristina has a table full of food and a plentiful supply of sangria, so I think that all things considered she's got the better deal here. Jason interviews that his matador might not be one of his best roles. He doesn't specify whether, on the grand scale of things, it's higher or lower than being in Echo Beach.
Their paso is to 'I Want It All' by Queen, and like a lot of Jason's dances, the vast majority of effort is being concentrated in the face. I don't think I've seen a Paso Face quite so tongue-swallowingly constructed since Tom Chambers. From the neck down, there's not a lot to write home about as the shaping is a bit loose, the walking is too much like actual walking, there's a bit of business with Kristina's skirt that doesn't look like it goes quite as planned, and it's all a bit lumpy. On the bright side, Kristina has managed to work in a tribute to her iconic routine with John Sergeant and allowed Jason to pull her across the floor like a sack of spuds for a brief, glorious moment.
Jason tells Bruce it was a "difficult birth" this week, and Bruce welcomes Our Fabulous Singers Dave Arch, And His Wonderful Orchestra. Bruce also says that last week's dancing raised the eyebrows of the judges, or would have done if it weren't for all the botox. It's not exactly the most original or compelling joke in the world, but it's completely made by Alesha innocently asking "whose botox?", indignantly echoed by Bruno, and then everyone turning to look at Craig and giggling. Len tells Jason that the first thing he looks for in the paso is the buttocks, because if the buttocks are firm, the posture will be good. Jason's buttocks were good, but unfortunately his technique was all a bit amiss. Len thinks he looked great when he was standing still, but the twist turns were "plonky" and it wasn't his best dance. Alesha thought it was a confident performance, but that he felt a little unsure (eh?) - that most of the character was projected in his face and she wants the balance between the technique and the passion. Bruno says that Jason tried to make a big meal out of the paso, but got indigestion. He says that the feet were off-timing, and he wasn't on top of the routine. Craig says that Jason needs to keep his shoulders down at all times, and follow through all of the lines that he creates, and he's lifting his knees too much. Jason agrees with all of those comments, apparently. [This made me laugh so hard. The graciousness! - Carrie]
They scamper up to the Tess Circle, where Jason reminds us that it's been a tough week and everyone's tired, and it's been a whirlwind, so the judges' comments were fair, and he says that next week is another week and they'll give it 100% - crucially neglecting to add "if we're still here". Tsk tsk, that's Reality Show Humility 101, Jason, you really need to work on that. Scores are in: Craig 6, Len 7, Alesha 7, Bruno 8 for a total of 27. For some reason, Flavia and Russell find this hilarious. Either that or it's some private joke, but it does look rather unsporting either way. Tess reminds them that there was a member of Queen in the audience, and asks if that was unnerving; Jason says that he hopes they did "Brian's song" justice. I've not seen that film, so I can't offer an opinion.
Next on are Alex and James, who've got a rumba for us. Bruce explains that it's a dance in which the man "woos" the woman, and that Alex spoke to him before the show and said she thought she was going to get wooed tonight. Hand on heart, for one brief moment of horror, I thought this was going to end in a "get wood" joke, but instead the punchline is "you'll get very wude", à la Jonathan Ross. Even so, it still took Bruce's obligatory explanation of the gag for me to confirm that my interpretation was wrong.
Alex says that they were both over the moon with last week's performance, especially being third on the leaderboard. She confesses that she doesn't want to be negative, but since there's a chance it may never happen again, she freeze-framed her recording of it on Sunday a few times. Bless. I honestly didn't expect to like Alex Jones, but there's something quite charming about her on this show. Admittedly it may well have something to do with most of her rehearsal footage from the last few weeks looking like James Jordan's homemade video nasty, but still. Alex gets the obigatory "it's so hard to be sexy" VT that people get when they have the rumba, and then there's a random bit where James grabs her by the legs and swings her around the floor until she squeaks like Beaker from The Muppet Show. I'm beginning to think we need to stage some sort of intervention here to save Alex from this awful, awful man. We end on a bit of comedy with Alex trying to be sexy for James, arriving in the style of a reverse-gendered Diet Coke advert and getting wolf-whistles from the boys, until she gets strangled by presumably the same vindictive feather boa that sabotaged Nancy's first dance. Hilarity itself, clearly.
Their rumba is to Leona Lewis's version of Snow Patrol's 'Run', and Alex is wearing an unflattering lace catsuit for it. Bizarrely, it starts in a manner reminiscent of all those Boleros they do on Dancing On Ice, and most of Alex's choreography once she's on her feet appears to be walk-walk-pose, walk-walk-pose. Last week, when the choreography for her Viennese waltz was criticised as being too basic, I didn't actually mind because I'd rather see basic choreography executed well than advanced choreography executed poorly (see: almost everything Robin gave Patsy Kensit last year), but the choreography for this is completely phoned-in, and because Alex doesn't really have a lot of performance skill or technique to bring to it, there's no veil over the "will this do?" nature of the steps this week. There's a brief moment in the middle when it picks up, but for the most part it's just so infuriatingly dull and plodding. It frustrates me so much, because when a rumba is done well it's one of my favourite dances, but everything about this is just wrong. I mean, there's even a bit where James drops Alex to the floor and she starts rolling along, and if that didn't make you think of this, then you're a better person than I am. There's also something that looks uncannily like a lift, though because it's shown in an aerial short it's pretty much impossible to tell if Alex has her feet on the ground or not.
Alesha tells Alex that she's sexy, and that the beginning of the dance was beautiful, and that Alex had nice arms and control throughout, but Alex plays it safe and needs to take more risks if she wants to grow. Bruno tells Alex she looks "sinfully sexy", but her performance was too demure and hesitant. He complains that Alex never really went for James with passion, and demonstrates this on Alesha, as is his wont. Len pulls a face of disgust, which is odd, because he spends so much time complaining about being surrounded by excessive gayness you'd think he'd welcome a bit of heterosexuality for a change. There's a cut to some of the other pros and contestants up in the Tess Circle here, and Aliona looks so bored, it's hilarious. Craig calls it "sexless, cold and stiff", with no hip action whatsoever, and "you spent four counts of eight just on your knees". I dunno, that sounds pretty sexy. James Jordan: People's Champion interjects here that "the public seemed to like it", because that's exactly the kind of lowest common denominator-grabbing douchenozzle he wants to be these days. Len, quite rightly, picks him up on this, and says that the public judge on "efficacity" and that the judges are here to lend the benefit of their many years of watching, competing and well, judging. He thought it was a good performance, but there was too much on the floor, there was a lack of hip action, and while it had romance, he would've liked to see more content in the routine.
Up in the Tess Circle, Tess asks Alex if she feels she's overcome her fear of being sexy. "Well, obviously not," Alex replies. Heh. Tess asks, since the rumba is the dance of love, who was Alex imagining as she danced it? "Me!" James hoots indignantly. Alex says that "you can't think of a lot" while dancing (bless her, I suspect that's the case even when she isn't dancing). Then - oh boy, here we go - James decides that he hasn't been quite enough of a dickhead yet this evening, and asks to speak "probably on behalf of all the professional dancers here" that it'd be nice "if the judges stopped commenting on our choreography, because we've been in the business a long long time, and we know what we're doing." I have a lot of thoughts on this, so I think it's best if I express them all in a numbered list.
1. Shut up, James.
2. Shut up, James.
3. This really is not about you. Your role on this show is to teach and support your celebrity. How is any of this little hissy fit helping Alex right now? She is stood next to you right now, TRYING TO GET YOU TO STOP, for crying out loud, because she fears - perhaps correctly - that she might be penalised for your little outburst.
4. Saying that the celebrity should not be judged harshly because of the choreography they were given is one thing, and an idea I would actively support, but saying that the choreography on this show should be immune from criticism? Get real. Should this piece of work not have been criticised? Or this? Or this? Or this? Or this? Or this? Or this? Just because you've spent years doing something doesn't mean you don't fuck up occasionally.
5. If you don't want to be criticised for your choreography, then try not to make your apathy quite so obvious. I mean, Erin lost interest in this series about two weeks ago, and she still managed to turn out something more interesting this week than that load of shit you just made Alex do.
6. Being the pro who refuses to let their celebrity be criticised at all is quite annoying. Being the pro who refuses to let anyone be criticised is utterly ridiculous.
7. Finally, SHUT UP, JAMES.
[Can I add another? 8. The choreography is fair game for judging. It always has been. Hence the pro partners winning the glitterball too. If choreography wasn't part of the competition, they'd give everyone the same routine each week. - Carrie]
I think that covers it. Anyway, shall we get the scores? Craig 4, Len 7, Alesha 7, Bruno 7 for a total of 25. James can't let it lie, of course, so he witters on about how a "four is ridiculous" and he's "forgotten more about dancing than Craig will ever know." James, I refer you to points 1, 2 and 7 above.
Next we have Rory and Erin. He was very happy with last week's performance, but he's worried about having to do the cha cha cha this week. On Tuesday, he says that Erin is trying to turn him into a sex god "when we all know I'm a middle-aged Scotsman". Well, Len didn't know that last week, Rory, so there might be some hope. Rory does the old "I'm an impressionist, I'm not comfortable being myself" schtick, and says that whenever Erin tells him to be butch, he ends up being camp. The footage seems to back this up. [Also, Rory says that it is a "cha-cha-challenge", which Alesha said prior to her cha cha cha. Plagiarist. Or impressionist. You decide. - Carrie]
They're dancing to 'Dance To The Music' by Sly And The Family Stone, and taking the unusual step of beginning the routine on the steps to the Tess Circle. It doesn't get off to the best of starts, as the promenade section across the floor sees Rory turning in the wrong direction, and not being there to meet Erin, throwing them both off for a second or two. There's a whole section of them apart, dancing up opposite sides of the floor, which shows confidence on the part of Erin, but the dancing as a whole is rather embarrassing. I feel bad for Rory, because he's clearly giving it a good go, but this is just not his dance at all.
Bruno says that Rory was "like a cocky rooster" and reminds him that he needs to step on the ball of his foot to get the correct hip action, but it was very funny. Craig calls it "gauche" and "gawky", and says that his flat-footedness made him look uncomfortable. Bruce witters on about how this and the quickstep are very different dances, and you are not a judge, Bruce, so kindly button it. Len says that he's like the government - "there's a lot going on and not all of it's good". He liked the New York section and thought that by and large he kept on time, but the gyrating wasn't his cup of tea. Alesha says that Rory's work ethic is brilliant and he's committed to the dance, and she enjoyed it.
Tess tells Rory that he threw himself into it, which Erin agrees with, and Rory cracks that he and Erin are a coalition, like the real government. Tess tells Rory that his hips "told the truth out there", and if she can't even quote Shakira correctly, I think it might be time for Tess to be put out to pasture like the useless bovine that she is. Tess finishes by saying he's getting fitter every week, and Rory asks her what she's doing after the show. Heh. Scores: Craig 4, Len 7, Alesha 6, Bruno 7 for a total of 24. Erin begs the viewers to vote because "I think we might need it." Spoiler: they do.
Audley and Natalie are next on, and he showed improvement last week despite tripping over his feet. Audley begs the viewers to keep him on because he wants to keep losing weight. In rehearsals, his feet are still a problem so Natalie recommends a ballet lesson, and Audley reacts with comical macho horror. However, Natalie Lowe is scared of no one and nothing, so she gets her way and Audley goes to a ballet lesson. I commend the show on its restraint for not forcing him into a tutu, by the way. Audley is complimented by the ballet teacher on his "gorgeous plie" (OOH MATRON!) and he admits that he quite enjoyed the ballet, and thinks his dancing will benefit from it. Sometimes Audley seems to be behaving so sensibly in his VTs that I wonder if he understands this show at all.
They're dancing to 'I Just Don't Know What To Do With Myself', which is one of my favourite songs ever by the way, and we open with Audley sitting on That Damn Bench while Natalie indulges in a bit of skirtography. It's actually pretty good when it gets going - there's not a lot of noticeable rise and fall, but there's a pleasing fluidity to his movement and the choreography is absolutely lovely. There's one frankly terrifying spin section where Natalie actually looks like her head has detached, but even that works somehow.
Craig says that he's seeing some improvement, particularly in Audley's frame, but it needs swing and sway and the pivot turns were a bit mean, though overall he really liked it. Len thinks some dances are more challenging than others, and the foxtrot is "probably the hardest, technically, to do" (bollocks it is - even Kate Garraway managed a decent foxtrot) and finishes by telling Audley that "I'm sitting here, giving you a standing ovation." Hold on a minute - did Len just actually say that a dance gave him a hard-on? Excuse me, I think I need to go and pour an entire bottle of Domestos directly into my cerebral cortex. Alesha loves that Audley rises to the challenge, and she could see the concentration in his face which was the only thing that spoilt it for her, but she thinks he should be proud. Bruno agrees with the concentration issue, and says that while Audley got lost a few times, he covered it very well.
Natalie grabs her boobs on the way up to the Tess Circle, confessing to Tess on her arrival that she did the whole dance with her dress undone. Have I mentioned that Natalie is my favourite pro? I love her SO MUCH. I'd totally want her as my partner if I went on this show. (I am TALL, so that probably helps my chances.) She pops herself back in, and Tess asks Audley if the ballet helped. Audley says that it did, that the comments from the judges were helpful, and that he had a knee problem this week which threatened his chances, but he got there in the end. Blimey, that's about three weeks' worth of storyline. I guess after that early visit to the bottom two they're cramming it in while they can. He thinks that it was the best they've danced that dance. Scores: Craig 6, Len 7, Alesha 6, Bruno 6 for a total of 25. I think that was a little underscored, to be honest. Tess asks Audley what's next for him, breakdancing? Thanks for that bit of ethnic profiling, Daly. Audley says that he will be doing nothing of the sort.
Up next are Team Nanton with their paso doble. All of the rehearsal footage for this routine looked abysmal, so this should be interesting. There is a truly spectacular amount of filler from Bruce relating to the presence of Widdy and Edwina both being in the audience tonight. I think this show was running a little under time in rehearsals, given how much he and Tess seem to be padding things out. Nancy's face after all of this is an utter picture, by the way; one of despair as painted by Edvard Munch. There's a lovely bit of sly humour in her VT from the music editors, who decided to soundtrack Nancy's reflections on last week's performance with Tina Turner's 'The Best'. Once that's over, Anton reminds new viewers that the paso doble is the dance of the bullfight where the man is the matador and the woman is the cape. He tells Nancy that he's got a surprise planned for her, a trip that will conjure up the feelings of the paso doble. "I think he's probably taking me to Madrid! Where else could be the best place to get into spirit?" says Nancy, either gamely playing along or as delusional as ever, depending on your personal perspective. Surprise! He's taken her to Stepney Farm. "This is no Madrid!" Nancy howls. Anton shoves Nancy into a pen full of bulls as she insists "I no want to get into the spirit of the dance!" I seriously covet Nancy's purple stripey wellies in this scene, by the way. Nancy points out that nothing in being shoved into a field of bulls (while Anton remains on the other side of the fence) is going to help her dance better on Saturday, and she's...got a point, hasn't she? Incidentally, I would like to point out that there was still less bull in that entire segment than there was in James Jordan's post-dance interview with Tess.
Their paso is to 'Rodrigo's Guitar Concerto', and it's every bit the mess you'd anticipate - even Anton's pretty sloppy. Nancy's dress is hideous and looks like it's been attacked by moths. She stumbles around the floor, at arm's length from Anton and often visibly counting the beats. Despite this, she's frequently out of time with the music. There is, however, one truly spectacular leap in the routine that took my breath away, and makes me wonder if Anton is a lot stronger than he looks or if Nancy just has secret powers of levitation.
Edwina Currie gives the routine a standing ovation; the rest of the audience does not oblige. Bruce asks Nancy if she was the cloak or the bull, and with pitch-perfect comic timing, Nancy plays it to the crowd with an eye-roll: "Well..." She complains to Bruce that Anton keeps putting her upside down all the time. "There must be a reason, dear," Bruce responds. Nancy informs us that being upside down increases the flow of oxygen to the head and this is how Anton is getting her to improve. Sure, why not? Anton says he's going to start with her upside down next week. Heh.
Len wonders if she might be better on her head because she's no good on her feet. He thinks there was more content this week and he enjoyed it. Alesha finds Nancy intriguing, and in this dance she thought she was a rag doll, but she loved it. Bruno calls Nancy "fabulous with your legs in the air" and wishes she'd stayed like that all the way through, because she was trying to count and still went off-time "which is almost impossible to do!" Note the word 'almost'. Craig thought it was more like "a paso set in Oklahoma" with all the skipping and the hoedown. I wait for a "put that ho down" joke that never arrives. He thinks it was "lift city", and while Nancy messed up after the dip, but he thinks there is secretly talent beneath the surface and we need to invest in that. Yes, ANTON. At this point, Bruce gets completely disgusting and asks Anton if he's ever danced with a Nancy before. Nancy Dell'Olio, God love her, breaks this awkward moment by lunging at Bruce and kissing him, thereby shutting him up. She won my vote tonight with that alone, let me tell you.
Up in the Tess Circle, Anton declares that it was "close". Tess asks how Nancy made the part of the bull look so glamorous. "She's the cape! The cape! She's not the bull!" Anton screams, before adding for good measure: "CAPE!!!" Heeheehee. I don't have a lot of time for Anton's crap, but I did find that very funny. Nancy chucks his chin and apologises for messing up. Aww. Scores: Craig 3, Len 5, Alesha 5, Bruno 5 for a total of 18. Anton: "I can't tell you how good it was going to be."
Next to dance for us are Bloody Lulu and Brendan. They get no joke in their intro. Last week they were penalised for the illegal lift, by Craig at least, and Bloody Lulu exclaims that being fourth from the bottom is "progress". This week they have the samba, and Bloody Lulu spends most of her training running around the room and cackling like Witch Hazel. I can only assume that Brendan has developed selective deafness in order to deal with her. She does appear to be picking it up quite well, though. Brendan tells her that this is the one dance he always gets kicked out of Strictly on. Number of times Brendan has actually been kicked off after a samba in eight series: three. The show, however, counts it as four, which means they're including Kelly Brook which, considering she withdrew from the competition after the death of her father, would be in poor taste even if she weren't the one doing red button commentary this week. Anyway, Bloody Lulu vows to break the curse.
They're dancing to 'Sir Duke' by Stevie Wonder, and the opening has them stood in front of the judges' desk miming with some trumpets. When they've finished, they place the trumpets on the desk, and Len and Alesha stow them away. I secretly hope Alesha's planning to insert that trumpet into Len if he even thinks about mentioning the phrase "getting on my wick". As for what Len plans to do with it, I feel it's best we don't ask. Bloody Lulu's hair is absolutely grotesque this week, but her dancing isn't that bad - it's rather flat-footed and sluggish in places, but for a samba it's not so bad. They waste several beats by running up the steps of the Tess Circle and cavorting with the other dancers before striding down again (remember this, it will be important later). Bloody Lulu gets a bit lost at one point and looks around to Brendan for guidance, but recovers a lot better than she has done in the past. She ends a second or two behind the beat, too.
Alesha thinks the samba suits Bloody Lulu because it's full of beans and energy. Bruno thought it was bubbly and effervescent, but then has a small psychotic break: "A couple of mistakes, though, WHY YOU ALWAYS DO IT?" Steady on, Bruno. Bloody Lulu blames a wardrobe malfunction. Craig thinks it needed more content and that they wasted time running up the stairs, but he thinks this dance suited her. Brendan: "In a 1:37 dance, we had one minute and fifteen seconds worth of content; I think that's enough for you, [Bloody] Lulu." Snerk. Len finishes off by saying that he liked the gusto and enthusiasm and the carnival spirit, but it felt repetitious. James Jordan, still feeling a need to burn out whatever goodwill he built up with Pamela Stephenson last year, decides to holler something from the balcony. Len turns and yells for James to "turn up, keep up, and shut up", which I believe is the exact same retort he used on Brendan in last year's Hallowe'en special, right after Brendan had returned from his father's funeral. Still, James does need to do all of those things, and I think the sound engineer who decided to mute James's microphone for his response to all of this deserves a Bafta of some kind. Outstanding Service To Silencing Douchebags, perhaps.
In the Tess Circle, Bloody Lulu slurs that she found her rhythm this week, and Brendan insists that she's messing with his mind. Scores: Craig 5, Len 6, Alesha 7, Bruno 7 for a total of 25. Tess invites us to vote for Bloody Lulu and end Brendan's alleged curse.
Who's next? It's Holly and Artem. In her VT, Holly notes that she was "a little low on the ol' ladder" last week. When she was fifth. I mean, I appreciate her point because I'm sure she's not exactly raking it in as far as the public vote is concerned, but it probably doesn't help her case to be saying it out loud. She says it's making her hungrier to impress the judges and get back up the top. Her VT is all about her not being naturally ladylike - as she and Artem dance around some poles (not like THAT) he tells her not to bend over, and she snarks that some viewers might like that. In the latest of this week's education-themed segments, Holly visits etiquette queen Liz Brewer, who makes her walk with a book on her head. Holly finds the whole thing hilarious, because Holly is taking this entire series with a fairly sizable pinch of salt, which is one of the reasons why I love her. Meanwhile, Artem sits in a chair and giggles, so Liz makes him do it as well. Then Holly is instructed to repeat "how now brown cow" in the plummiest of accents, again failing to keep a straight face. She and Artem stride out of the room, him reciting "how now brown cow", and she kicks him on the rear, which Liz declares "a bit inappropriate". Holly informs us that she will be "how now brown cow-ing" during her performance on Saturday, and that she will "nail it - like a lady". Love her.
They're dancing to 'Cry Meow' by Pixie Lott, otherwise known as Sheila Hancock's favourite song, and there are three lamp posts in the middle of the floor across a diagonal axis. Holly starts at one end, Artem at the other, and they meet in the middle, avoiding each other like Gavin Henson avoids rugby. There's a bit too much arsing around with the lamp posts for my personal taste, particularly the visually unappealing bit where they're dancing around the same one and have to duck under each other's arms, but once they take hold it's rather lovely. There's still perhaps a lack of commitment in Holly's performance, particularly in her arm placement at times, but this is easily her best dance so far, and after last week's rather unfortunate tango, an encouraging sign about her ballroom.
Bruno commends the storytelling and the fluidity, but says that Holly could be amazing if she just focused a bit more. Craig found it bumpy, but loved the storytelling, and points out that they missed a hand pass. Len got fed up with the poles in the end (didn't Arlene get in trouble for saying that to Ola back in series five?) and tells her that she needs to step forward on her heels, but she was light and fluffy and lovely. Alesha thought it was elegant and composed and that Holly did a great job.
In the Tess Circle, Holly remarks that she's annoyed with herself for missing that hand pass, adding "not that we're hard on ourselves or anything" and pulling a massive "ERP" face. Heh. Scores: Craig 7, Len 7, Alesha 8, Bruno 8 for a total of 30. Tess calls her "our Aussie corker Holly" and asks if she likes being called that. Holly: "Yeah, that'll do." Seriously: LOVE HER.
Next are Chelsee and PASHA! Chelsee admits that last week her cha cha cha wasn't quite as secure in her head as it could've been, and says that she sometimes gets a bit overexcited when she's dancing to music she likes. This week, Pasha explains that Chelsee's schedule at Waterloo Road is keeping her busy, so if she can't come to him, he's going to go to her. Curiously, the scenes that Chelsee is filming at this point involve her wandering around in a wedding dress, and being carried to a pink stretch limo by Chalky. It seems a bit odd of the BBC to air a massive spoiler for Waterloo Road in the middle of another show like this, but I guess it was all cleared by those in the know at some level. Incidentally, there's a brief scene of them chatting with Britain's Got Talent winner and Waterloo Road cast member George Sampson - I wonder if they were comparing dancing notes? Philip Martin Brown, aka Mr Budgen, says that he doesn't know Chelsee finds the time to rehearse, but they're all rooting for her. Chelsee says that she hopes the extra rehearsals have paid off
Chelsee's in a blue air hostess-style dress not a million miles away from the one Britney Spears wears in the 'Toxic' video, and Pasha is a businessman who can't find his ticket, so...they dance. Well, it still makes more sense than most of Aliona's routines, I guess. And it's more imaginative than the porn version of this scenario probably would've been. They're dancing to 'Sing Sing Sing', and there are lots of lovely touches here, including the superimposed shadows of planes flying overhead on the floor. I'd say this is the first genuinely memorable routine of the series (for the right reasons at least) because it has a real wow quality to it - the storytelling is good, the choreography is ambitious, the performances are strong. There are moments where Chelsee looks a bit off-balance, but that's pretty much all I can find to fault in it. It ends with her pulling a novelty oversized ticket out of his jacket (seriously, Pasha, you couldn't find that? I guess when you're that pretty, you don't have to be smart) and waving it in the air. Afterwards, Chelsee fans herself with the ticket as the audience give her a standing ovation.
Craig declares it "first class". Len thinks Pasha checked in, and Chelsee will not be checking out tomorrow. Alesha thinks they have great chemistry, and her only criticism is that it ended too soon and she wanted to see more. Bruno calls Chelsee a "pocket rocket" and says the whole routine was great.
Up in the Tess Circle, Chelsee squeals with delight, and Tess asks her how on earth she managed to pull that off in so little training time. Chelsee says that she's just enjoying herself, so that's spurring her on. Pasha says he doesn't know how she's managing to do it either, and Chelsee says "it's him, he's really good." D'awww. Scores: nines all round for a total of 36. Chelsee and Pasha are ecstatic, and it is ADORABLE.
Having to follow that are Harry and Aliona with a waltz. We're treated to some treasured memories of Harry's bare chest, and Harry says that while it meant a lot to get praise from Craig, he has to keep working to keep the standard up. Harry explains that this week's waltz has a little romantic moment in it, so he's "got to get my romantic hat on". Very sensible, and I would advise all the impressionable youngsters out there to do likewise. He's having trouble getting the hang of the romantic side of dancing (it says here), and needs some sort of self-help guide, which is a cue for one of those spoof public information films, involving a dour-faced Harry looking sharp in a pinstriped suit learning how to pull a rather blowsy-looking Aliona in a bar. Aliona is a massive ham throughout this - I feel like I should've noticed this sooner, but I suppose she was gone rather quickly in her first series, and it was impossible to notice anyone else's scenery-chewing last year when Pamela Stephenson was around.
Their waltz is danced to 'Come Away With Me' by Norah Jones, and it's really lovely - soft, elegant, and very romantic. As a couple, they still don't have masses of chemistry, but somehow it's not an issue in this dance because - and I don't say this easily - Aliona's choreography here is pretty good. There's a break in the middle where she goes up on the stairs, and he pursues her, whispers in her ear, kisses her, and invites her back onto the floor. This proved pretty divisive, but for what it's worth, I actually thought it worked perfectly fine within the context of the story they're telling, and certainly in terms of both Aliona's usual propensity for batshit gimmicks and the strange insistence on staircase-faffing tonight, it was remarkably restrained. So honestly, no complaints here.
Len's got his having-a-conniption face on, so let's get it over with: he claims to be distraught because the first half was fantastic, the hold, posture and footwork were beautiful, and it had rise and fall, but then there was the stair bit. "I DIDN'T GET IT! I DIDN'T GET THAT BIT!" Len screams. Not liking it is one thing, but...not getting it? It wasn't exactly Ulysses, Len. It seemed perfectly self-explanatory to me. The audience boos, and Len continues screaming that he loved it and thought it was a ten, and then that happened. Aliona attempts to explain herself, and Harry shushes her, which may not be gentlemanly, but is perhaps very wise after the sort of precedent James laid down earlier tonight. Alesha insists on taking her turn next and points out that the celebrity dances the choreography that they are given, and that she's not going to penalise Harry for the whispering bit. Which is basically the rational human being's version of what James was wittering on about earlier. She tells Harry that he makes ballroom look cool, and that it was exquisite. Bruno thinks Harry is a smooth operator ("you can whisper in my ear any time", to which I say HANDS OFF BRUNO I SAW HIM FIRST) and says that his musical phrasing was superb and he was riding on every bar. He thinks the bit on the stairs is "a question of interpretation", but he needs to work his lines when he's shadowing Aliona. Craig loved the whispering and the whole storytelling, and he thinks Len is wrong. Len, of course, takes considerable umbrage at this and calls Craig a "puerile little git". "Puerile"? Really? I don't think that word means what Len thinks it means. Len then continues screaming about how it was supposed to be a waltz and how it should've been a ten, and Craig is all "show me exactly where I disagree with any of that, dear" and Alesha has to bang on the desk and remind Len that Harry didn't choreograph it. Bloody hell. Bruno decides to add some levity by suggesting he and Harry practice the shadowing together, and Harry winks at him and makes "call me" gestures. I'm warning you, Bruno: call my man again and I'mma ***k you up.
Harry and Aliona head for the Tess Circle while Len continues to fume, and Tess tells us that Russell loved it. Harry says that he enjoyed himself, though it was the hardest week, and it wasn't until Thursday that he really got the hang of it. Tess asks if he'll be doing that on the next McFly tour, and Harry replies that Tom's in charge so he'll have to ask him. Tom hollers "NO!" from the audience. Hee. Scores: Craig 8, Len 8, Alesha 10, Bruno 9 for a total of 35. Seriously, Len docked two points for the staircase? Also, in a depressingly predictable fashion, the internet exploded with outrage over Alesha daring to give anything a ten without being sanctioned by the other judges first, because God forbid she know her own mind or anything. I have no problem with that routine getting a 10, and I understand that Future Head Judge Karen Hardy said it deserved one on the red button commentary as well (I didn't witness this myself, but I shall be checking as soon as it goes up online), so if it's a choice between siding with Alesha and Future Head Judge Karen Hardy or siding with Len...well, I don't think you need me to tell you that. [Oh God. I'm on Len's side. If pro and celeb got different marks, then I'd be Team Kalesha, but it's supposed to be a partnership. Including lame-ass choreography. - Carrie] Anyway, Harry's rather shocked to get the first 10 of the series.
Anita and Robin are next. She really enjoyed her jive last week, particularly getting a standing ovation. This week, they've got the American Smooth, and Robin is looking forward to getting all glamorous in the old Hollywood style. He mentions Fred and Ginger in rehearsals, so we must all drink. Anita recalls watching the movies as a young girl and wondering how it would feel to be a movei star, and we segue into a vaguely creepy dream sequence sex fantasy between her and Robin which is best left well alone, I feel.
They're dancing to 'I've Got You Under My Skin' and it starts out a little stuttery and incorporates a bizarre-looking bit where Anita stands on one leg while Robin rotates her 360º like a weather vane, but it soon picks up with some impressive lifts and a lovely sequence of kicks.
Alesha says that the dance fits Anita very well, and she just needs to straighten her legs because on occasion they were really bent, and she did a great job with the daring lifts. Bruno says that she's never been lovelier and it had the '40s glamour, but he thought the arabesque was a bit dodgy. I think that's the technical term for the weather vane bit that I didn't like. Craig spotted a couple of little mishaps but nothing major, and they lost body contact quite a lot throughout, but he thought it was sophisticated and classy, and Anita is a consummate pro. Len liked the little things, like the two heel turns that she did, and the overall ease and elegance of the routine.
Anita runs rigidly up to the Tess Circle as Tess explains that Anita's been nervous all week. Tess asks Anita if she felt like a movie star, and Anita concedes that she did "at moments". Tess then decides to poke that bag of insecurity with a big sharp stick and asks Anita if she can ever imagine a time when she won't be dancing with Bobby, and Anita's face immediately crumbles, like WELL DONE TESS. *slow clap* Scores: Craig 8, Len 8, Alesha 8, Bruno 8 for a total of 32. Anita is verklempt.
Our penultimate couple of the evening is Robbie and Ola. Robbie was thrilled to have improved with each week, and hopes that things will continue along this line. Ola has a plan to sort out Robbie's nerves, by dancing at halftime during a Reading football match. It backfires slightly, as Robbie isn't so nervous while Ola is terrified. Luckily, they get through it and don't get booed - indeed, they get cheers. Robbie says that it's still not as terrifying as dancing on a Saturday night, though.
They're dancing the jive to Otis Redding's 'Love Man', and it's...not the continued improvement Robbie was hoping for, let's put it that way. The kicks and flicks aren't too bad, but the rest of it's all rather lumpy, and his free arm just hangs around limply. There's also far too much time spent with him on his knees (fnar). He ends it with a knee slide into the camera and kissing it. I didn't need to see that.
Bruno says he's never seen anyone work the golden locks like that since Jerry Hall. Heh. He declares it "insane" (if anyone would know, Bruno would) and while technically "not perfect", he had a good time. Craig found it sloppy and ploddy, and the timing wasn't always there, but he adored the characterisation and the way Robbie went for it. Len reaches for the "you loved it, the crowd loved it, everybody loved it" well, and Alesha loved how his energy was on a different level tonight.
Tess asks Robbie if he's been surprised by the support he's had from football fans, and Robbie has. Well, that's that sorted. Scores: Craig 5, Len 8, Alesha 7, Bruno 7 for a total of 27. Bloody Lulu smacks Robbie on the bum. No idea why.
Finally we have Russell and Flavia, who have been on last in every show in which they've performed bar one. Jesus Christ, show, push this shit a bit harder, why don't you? We're reminded that Russell was dragged kicking and screaming into the ballroom section of the competition last week but still managed to be gayer than Christmas, and Craig remarking that Russell could do with toning the camp down a bit. Russell makes the point that there are plenty of celebrities being Rambo ("like Harry in leather" he says, in the tone of voice that I might use when considering Harry in leather, and seriously Russell, I WILL FIGHT YOU TOO) and that you can't really be macho when dancing to a Barbra Streisand song. And yup, he's pretty much on the money there. Their tango is to 'Sweet Dreams' and Flavia has gone for a literal interpretation, making a routine that is about dreams. I'm worried already. This leads into a VT in which Russell dreams about dancing with Flavia on some cliffs, with rainbows and sunshine and puppies and...
*vomits into a bucket continuously for half an hour*
Right, sorry about that. *wipes mouth surreptitiously* Where were we? Oh yes, Russell and Flavia's tango. It begins with Russell in bed, being woken by dream sorceress Flavia, who forces him to tango with her. I don't actually mind ballroom Russell quite so much, because there's less of an opportunity for Flavia to just choreograph any old Mardi Gras shit for him - here there's an actual tango with structure, and while not the most exemplary display of talent or technique I've ever seen, it is at least a good effort and recognisable as a tango, and that's pretty much all I'm looking for. I could do without the end pose, mind, which is Russell doing a Macauley Culkin in Home Alone face while clutching his teddy bear.
Craig thinks that it's good for him to give machismo a bit of a go, but the shoulder shrugs didn't really belong, and occasionally his head didn't look like it belonged to him either. Len says his head is like a nodding dog, and it was all too whimsical and airy-fairy, but there is an endearing charm about Russell. Alesha thinks it wasn't the best tango she's ever seen, but she appreciated Russell's interpretation - and at this point she can't keep up the pretense any more and just starts cackling, which is fair enough. She thinks he's too nice for the menacing tango, and she wants to see him have a go at a jive. Bruno thinks it was "from Sleeping Beauty to night terror". Flavia and Russell congratulate him on his correct interpretation of their routine.
Russell, Flavia and Teddy head up to the Tess Circle, and Russell is thrilled that Bruno got the whole storyline. Tess asks what reaction he gets from people, and Russell says that everyone's so kind, and they're always dancing for him. "It's worth doing this just to be in touch with the people again," he says. PLEASE NOTE THAT RUSSELL LIKES PEOPLE, WE WEREN'T SURE IF YOU GOT THAT. [He also likes MEN. In a SEXUAL way. Because he is A GAY. - Carrie] Scores: Craig 5, Len 6, Alesha 6, Bruno 7 for a total of 24. Russell apparently has the samba scheduled for next week if he's still here. Cripes. Everyone starts cracking up for reasons that shall remain a mystery to me.
Leaderboard, anyone? Chelsee's at the top this week, with Harry close behind, then Anita, then Holly, with Jason and Robbie tied, then Alex, Audley and Bloody Lulu all tied behind them, then another tie between Rory and Russell, and poor Nancy at the bottom again.
Recap: Jason's paso don't-ble; Alex's rumba that WAS AMAZING AND DEFINITELY HAD NO CHOREOGRAPHY PROBL--get off my keyboard, James Jordan; Rory's reluctant cha cha cha, Audley's foxtrot where Natalie's head fell off, Nancy definitely being the cape and NOT THE BULL, DAMMIT; Bloody Lulu wearing Dougal from The Magic Roundabout on her head; Holly being a pole dancer (ho ho ho); Chelsee taking to the skies; Harry and Aliona on the stairs and incurring Len's wrath from now until the end of time; Anita giving it Hollywood old-school; Robbie dancing on hot coals, and Russell's tango that could've been a sweet dream but was in fact a beautiful nightmare.
And that's it! Someone's going home on Sunday, but who will it be?
Results Show: 23rd October 2011
We open with a close-up of Pasha. Note to directors: please begin every show like this. It turns out there are actually other people present, and in fact this is a routine from James, Ola, Kristina, Robin, Katya, Pasha, Aliona and Artem - I think it's a salsa, but frankly it could be anything. It's very lively, whatever it is. They're dancing to 'I Know You Want Me', by Pitbull, and there are podiums involved. I like to think this is what they all get up to after the show each week, when the cheap watered-down BBC beer starts flowing. At one point it looks like Aliona almost falls over and is only saved by Artem puling her up, but maybe that was intentional - who knows?
Tess is here, and wearing a different dress from "last night" - sadly this one is equally hideous; it's see-through with polka dots and sheer black panels to cover up her more unmentionable parts. At least there's nothing around her neck. She re-introduces the judges, and tells them all they're looking fine. Unsurprisingly, they do not return the compliment.
Over to Claudia, who's looking better than she did last week, thank God. She says that we have a performance from Vincent and Flavia coming up, and someone called Caro Emerald singing for us. I thought having Professor Green on The X Factor was bad enough, but at least I've heard of him.
Recap of last night's action: people got ready, then they went out and danced. Robbie kissed Harry on the cheek. Do I have to add Robbie to the list of people who are after my man as well? This is just getting silly now. Jason's routine got rather muted reviews, and backstage he says that he doesn't think he did a bad job, he hopes he hasn't peaked completely. Backstage, Alex thinks that being called sexless is the worst insult you can call someone (really?) and gets rather teary. James is mercifully silent. Rory was called gauche and gawky, and he says backstage that his overall mission is to please Craig. He then mimics Len's "the gyration isn't my cup of tea" and adds "well, that's Latin, isn't it?" HA! Good point, Mr Bremner. Len got a stiffy for Audley, and Audley was very appreciative of it, in a non-sexual way. Bruno said Nancy was out of time, and backstage admits that she "probably" was, yes. Bloody Lulu got told off for her repetitive samba, and Brendan thinks that YOUR MOTHER IS REPETITIVE, SO! Holly got good feedback for her Viennese waltz, and seemed oddly emotional backstage. Chelsee was "over the moon" with the scores for her quickstep. Len thcweamed and thcweamed until he was thick over Aliona's choreography, and Harry remained diplomatic about it backstage, though he did allow himself to get excited about scoring the first 10 of the series. Anita screamed about her scores backstage, and had a bit of a verbal failure. Robbie shook it all about, and Ola laughed that Bruno loved the hair more than the dancing. Russell's happy to have been called a Strictly legend, so that's nice.
Time to find out the first lot of people who can breathe a sigh of relief this week. Safe, and through to next week, are: Chelsee and Pasha, Audley and Natalie, Anita and Robin, Harry and Aliona, and Bloody Lulu and Brendan. In the bottom two, however, are Rory and Erin. Holly has spent the entirety of this section looking terrified, by the way, and having to wait another 15 minutes to learn her fate might actually kill her.
Len is OUTRAGED that Rory is in jeopardy because it was definitely not his worst dance. Because that's how the scoring works, we judge their progress from week to week, grading on a curve, and if they fail to improve they go home. Jesus Christ, Len, are you NEW? [Len definitely needs his week off. - Carrie]
Claudia's with the five safe couples, and Chelsee is excited to have been top of the leaderboard this week and is absolutely loving it all. Claudia tells Anita that she looked emotional this week, and Anita said she wanted to get better each week, so she was nervous that she would blow it and not come up to par. She says that she had a sneaky suspicion she'd love it, but not this much. Claudia asks Harry if getting the first 10 of the series was better than having eight number ones. Harry grunts, which clearly means "come off it", though he hastily corrects himself. Nice safe, McFly. Nice save indeed.
Then somebody called Caro Emerald sings a song called 'That Man'. I have no idea who she is, but it's all fairly standard retro bollocks, like we need another Imelda May. It's all very dull until halfway through, when the previously silent crowd suddenly scream because Pasha and Katya have come to do the most frenetic jive I've ever seen in ages. I love them both, and I have never been so glad to see either of them in my life, because this shit was seriously soporific before they turned up.
After that, Claudia's with the judges for Len's Len, which has picked up Len having a little play around on the trumpet during Bloody Lulu's samba. He is cross that it didn't work: "you'd think it would be easy to blow up one end and spout out the other." Well, if anyone would know, he would. Len's selected Anita and Robin to watch in slow-mo, possibly because he thinks he can see her knickers. We get a slow-mo of Anita's fabled heel-turn as well, and Len points out that if he's being pedantic, he'd like to see her feet together, but it was lovely. Alesha has selected Robbie gyrating, which she declares "like an animal". She thinks he deserves a hair advert when the show's over. She also wants to see Rory gyrating again, and she's disappointed that he's in the bottom two, because he did so well with his hip action.
Craig has selected Nancy and Anton with the sound amplified, which is a series of terrifying grunts from both dancers. The colour drains from Craig's face throughout, and he says he's so pleased they don't get to hear that every night. We see the lift in slo-mo, which Craig calls "the lobster claw". He says that he loves her because she's great fun, but he'd like the dancing to live up to the personality. Bruno has selected Russell Grant And His Giant Slab Of Ham, which he calls "slightly demented, but very very funny".
Trail for next week's Hallowe'en special: essentially a recurring gag in which something looks terrifying at first but turns out not to be when you look closely. You know, a bit like Bruno in reverse. I'm not going to recap the entire thing, but the people who come out of it the best are: Holly for above-average girl-in-horror-movie face acting, Harry for looking hot in a hoodie, Nancy for being Nancy, Robbie for doing a surprisingly good Blair Witch homage, Anita for also giving good horror-movie-face, and Audley for the best/worst fake-drinking ever committed to film.
We're back with Tess, who has the results for the remaining six couples. In no particular order, safe and returning next week are: Russell and Flavia, Holly and Artem, Robbie and Ola, Jason and Kristina and Alex and James, leaving Nancy and Anton in the bottom two with Rory and Erin.
Tess turns to Craig and asks if he's worried we won't get the chance to see the talent beneath Nancy's surface that he suggested might be lurking somewhere, deeply submerged. Craig says that he is, and he would miss her campness if she went, and he's sado-masochistically enjoying her struggle from the dance gutter. Tess throws to Claudia, who introduces Vincent and Flavia doing an Argentine Tango. Couldn't Tess have just introduced them herself? Anyway, Vincent and Flavia do an Argentine Tango, and it is excellent and mad. There's a limit to how much I can say about the pro routines after this many years.
Claudia's with the bottom two couples and asked what went wrong, and a very gracious Rory says that he just didn't dance well enough. He adds that Erin doesn't deserve to be in the bottom two right now because she's "such an inspiration" and a "real ambassador for dance". Erin tells him that he's very sweet. Rory says it's been a real privilege to work with all the dancers and he'd miss it all like a limb. Who knew he was such a sweetheart? Nancy is asked if she's surprised to be here again, and she says she's disappointed because she knew she could do better, and she felt they did the dance fantastically in rehearsal, but the live show is unpredictable. After the mess-up on It Takes Two earlier this week, she clarifies that it's lovely to see Claudia, but she's unhappy to be here. Claudia asks Anton how scary he can be for Hallowe'en next week, but Anton thinks he and Nancy have been frightening enough already. He's hoping to be "un-scary, just for a change."
Montage of potential loserdom: Nancy has found it a great experience of life, far more than just dancing, and she wants to promise us that it's worth keeping her in the competition. Rory has found it an amazing experience, and he'd love to stay in because you never know what's coming next. He's loved everything about it, and it's been a wonderful experience.
The bottom two couples take their places on the floor, and Tess has the results. The couple leaving tonight is...Rory and Erin. Aw.
Asked what his highlight of the series was, Rory says that shimmying next to John Prescott was a close second, but above all was his quickstep, and he thanks Erin for teaching it to him. Erin tells him he's been completely wonderful, and she wants him to hold his head high because he's done great. She tells him she'll miss him, and gives him a hug. That's it for this week, then - we'll be back again next week for Hallowe'en week, and we do hope you'll join us then.