Sunday, 18 November 2012

Wembley I See You Again

WEMBLEY Week
17 November 2012

Last week!  Everyone was surprisingly good but someone had to go, so Fern left, taking Artem’s tits with her. [*sniff* - Steve] To add insult to injury, Pasha was also dumped unceremoniously in the bottom two, although he and Kimberley were saved by a clean sweep of judges.

Tonight!  Last year’s WEMBLEY (Arena) show was the worst in this series’ history, so they’re doing it again!  Hooray! (It makes me even miss BLACKPOOL, as annoying as it was).

And to celebrate the WONDER OF WEMBLEY, we have a half-baked theme (just how half-baked will only become apparent as we get into it.  I warn you to expect a lot of grump from me about this so-called theme – not least as every week has songs from a range of eras and they don’t usually need to dress that up with any kind of theme nonsense) and as we all know, half-baked themes must have a terrible comedy VT.  The premise is that they’re in a limo – possibly the same one from last week that Fern couldn’t get into (prophetic or what?) although the weird grass skirts seem to have gone – and Craig is the driver.  It then becomes like the Delorean from Back to the Future and takes them back in time –  to 1970 (represented by Michael, Nicky and Louis doing Saturday Night Fever, from 1977; surrounded by flower power symbols from 1969) , to 1920 (represented by Dani looking like Charlie Chaplin and Victoria in a flapper outfit), 1980 (represented by Richard, Lisa and Kimberley in trackies and ra-ra skirts – from later in the decade (and not even from the 80s judging by Richard’s top) soundtracked by ‘Footloose’  - from 1984).  This whole segment is replete with BANTER.  The punchline to it all?  Dani is still in black and white and dressed as Charlie Chaplin.  SPOILER: This doesn’t continue into the main show.

Cue titles!

Because one comedy VT is never enough, we open with a terrible skit done in a mock-WW2 style with Len telling the other judges they’re launching ‘operation sequin’ and it descends into a bunch of nonsense and innuendo.  Hooray for Wembley!

We then see Bruno and Craig descend in harnesses as if they were pilots, which cues us into a 1940s themed pro-dance to ‘Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy’ that has more than a nod to the 00s in the form of the female dancers wearing outfits in the colour of the Britney Spears ‘Toxic’ one (possibly also a nod to Chelsee and Pasha from last year).  Our regular pros (Erin and Anton, Brendan and Natalie, Flavia and Vincent for this bit) are joined by a troupe of others throughout.  It then fuses into Len and Darcey doing some random dancing nonsense before the rest of the pros arrive – including Aliona, BACK FROM THE DEAD! – to ‘Proud Mary’ which appears to be a mash-up of the 1960s and 70s (with very 1980s coloured clothing) – although I’ll let them off as the Credence Clearwater version was around in 68-69 and the Tina Turner one 1970.  For no reason we then have a load of military drummers.  Then the celebrities come out to another decade mash-up: this time the 1980s and 1990s, for they are now apparently one and the same – a medley of some of the best bracketed songs ‘Gonna Make You Sweat (Everybody Dance Now)’, ‘I Wanna Dance With Somebody (Who Loves Me)’.  They’re all wearing T-shirts with slogans on.  Sadly the slogans we can see (and that’s not all of them as the mens’ jackets obscure theirs and the stupidly large stage obscures everyone else’s) mostly seem to be Len-isms: ‘Love Lisa Lightfoot’, ‘Love Nimble Kimble’, ‘Lovely Ooh Van Outen’, ‘Byrne Baby Byrne’, ‘Love Tricky Dicky’, ‘Love Victorious Vic’.  Aliona gets her paws on Louis for a bit, which she seems inordinately pleased about.  Then it all goes Gangnam Style yet again.  Look, I sat through Children in Need, and there was one bit where that song/dance happened three times in a row in different sections.  ENOUGH!  Then there’s an Andy Warhol-esque portrait of all the celebs’ faces projected onto the floor and some fireworks.  

Well that was… somewhat shambolic.  And already the perils of Wembley are visible – even though all the celebrities and pros are on the stage, accompanied by backing dancers, people waving flags and a load of projections, it still feel vast and empty.  There’s also a really ugly raised stage bit in the middle of the floor which will scupper a few people tonight (whoops, spoilers).  Can’t we just kill WEMBLEY WEEK with fire already? [Agreed. I know that there are noble intentions behind it because it's for charity and everything, but couldn't they just make BLACKPOOL the charity night instead? - Steve]

After last week’s triumphant Claudia takeover of the Tess Circle (and Tess’s rather less successful attempts at being Bruce), Bruce and Tess are back doing their usual duties.  They have to walk so far to get to the stage in the middle that Bruce only does a couple of dance steps and doesn’t even do the velociraptor dance.  He then panics that ‘we haven’t done the leg’ and Tess reluctantly shoves it at him.  The ‘nice to see you’ bit then goes on FOR AN ETERNITY as a lead-in to Bruce saying it’s because Craig has a headache. Bokay then Bruce. He then reminds us of the stupid non-theme and Tess says they’re going ‘from the 20s to the 00s’.  SPOILER: Notsomuch.  Now if you really were going to do that theme, you would, I suppose, need to give everyone a different decade.  And make everything feel decade-appropriate.  But I have nine dances to exercise THEME RAGE on, so best not spend them too quickly.

Daly Dresswatch, BTW?  Adequate black thing let down by a nasty shrug with a horrible neckline.

Bruce then says we need to start with ‘the decade we’re in’ (it’s called the 2010s, Bruce.  Not hugely snappy, I know) and YET AGAIN MORE GANGNAM STYLE.  Was that necessary?  No it was not.  Tess thanks everyone for buying tickets and raising money for Children in Need and Bruce and Tess remind us how the show works. On the red button this week, Russell Grant.  Can you imagine how loud Russell and Karen together would be?  *Shudders* [Imagine if she'd actually been his partner on the show. I bet the results would've been...special. - Steve]

Lisa and Robin are up first.  Lisa is very excited that Bruno compared her to Liza Minelli last week and she’s all ‘Liza Minelli, Lisa Riley – SAME SENTENCE!’  Heh.  She blames her bosom for not giving a big enough gap between her and Robin.  This week they’re going to the 1970s for their samba, which is the cue for them to prat about like they’re in a Flares bar.

They’re dancing to ‘Car Wash’ and there is a literal car wash on stage.  In a tribute to Artem’s tits (RIP) there are two male backing dancers in bare chests and dungarees washing the car.  Lisa is wearing a pink and orange dress which is an interesting colour choice.  Robin's also got his tits out and is half-wearing dungarees – with red converse for… reasons, I guess.  The other dancers then lift her and all four of them start dancing – is that even allowed?  The dance has its moments, but it’s mostly pretty sloppy and imprecise and Robin is having to drag Lisa around for a lot of it. [And he blatantly stands on her foot at one point. - Steve] It’s not *that* samba-y either, but then I blame the disco music for that one.  It ends with Lisa in the splits, though, which gets them a massive whoop from the audience. [I laughed, because all I could think of was how much she reminded me of Mystique doing the same thing on RuPaul's Drag Race, and how the editors always used to soundtrack it with a massive THUD. - Steve]

Bruce welcomes the judges as Lisa looks overwhelmed at the audience reaction.  Bruce then makes a semi-OK joke about the judges going out for a meal: ‘Len says he could murder an Italian’.  Len then makes a load of innuendo about Lisa’s bumpers and headlights.  So classy.  Lisa, bless her, looks somewhat affronted by this – although it’s probably best not to draw attention to these things in your VT if you don’t want them mentioning, I suppose.  Bruno calls her ‘funky, frisky and frothy’ and continues his bisexual moments by telling her she can polish his bonnet anytime.  STOP THIS SICK BBC FILTH NOW.  Craig calls it big, bold and beautiful.  Bruce asks if that was a film, ‘The Bold and The Beautiful’?  It was a Channel 5 daytime soap import from the US, Bruce, as well you know.  Darcey loved it but felt they needed more spring, which gives Lisa and Robin an excuse to bounce up and down.          

It’s a very long way from the judges’ desk to the Tess Circle at WEMBLEY.  Lisa is freaked out by being ‘Lisa from Manchester’ at WEMBLEY.  If only this were BLACKPOOL, you could pretend it was a homecoming.  Tess notes that Robin’s guns are out.  Naturally.  Scores are in: 8,8,8,8 for a total of 32.  Really??  I’d have given it a 6 if I was feeling particularly generous. [I can't believe they got eights when he STOOD ON HER FOOT. It's like the judges on this show are genetically predisposed to overmark anyone called Lisa. - Steve] For some reason Kristina gets to be central in the Tess Circle, even though she’s not playing.  I can only presume it’s so we still get the full extent of her epic bitchfaces.

Next up: Nicky and Karen.  Bruce implores the audience to have a riot for some reason, which is HARDLY APPROPRIATE BEHAVIOUR and I expect a FULL PUBLIC APOLOGY.  Bloody BBC.  Nicky and Karen say  how happy they were about getting good comments last week, but this week it’s a jive, so this is the excuse for Nicky to put on the worst and least-Elvis wig ever and threaten to have a Jedward haircut.  He says Westlife have played Wembley Arena the most times and have their handprints in concrete outside (only four prints are present though, clearly this was from when Bryan had been erased from history).  Karen comments on how little their hands are.  And we all know what little hands mean, eh?  *Nudge nudge wink wink* [If this was supposed to be some suggestion that Nicky has a small penis, I LAUGH HEARTILY. We've all seen the evidence to the contrary, Karen. - Steve]

The 1950s theme consists of Nicky being dressed like Him from The Script and he starts by jigging about on the judges’ table before jumping off uncomfortably.  The dancing is very leaden and clumsy, Nicky is clodding around rather than having the nimble energy the jive needs – although it’s marginally better in hold than out of it.  His kicks are really ungainly and it’s incredibly flat-footed, although his rhythm is better than Michael’s, I suppose.  It ends with him skidding into a cell at the bottom of the stage and Karen being the jailer with a terrible ‘Criminal Record’ sign.  And this happens before the music ends, fans of the comments about Dani and Vincent's timing last week. 

Bruce thanks the singers, DaveArch and the wonderful wonderful orchestra and then asks Nicky if he’s a lifer or a Westlifer.  Nicky says ‘Westlifer’ and Bruce gets offended and is all ‘it was just a joke’.  The joke was just as much lost on me as it was Nicky, Bruce.

Bruno says his timing was good but his kicks and flicks weren’t very sharp.  They were the bluntest thing I’ve ever seen.  Nicky attempts to high-five Bruce and Bruce misses it and Nicky just stands there, awkwardly, with his hand up for ages until Bruce reciprocates.  Craig calls it flat-footed and says he needs to straighten his legs more when he jumps but he loved the energy and character.  Bruce then snarks that it’s better when 6000 people boo Craig, even though there weren’t that many boos for this.  Darcey says he isn’t kicking properly and Karen needs to ‘get him on the ground and stretch his hamstrings’ which prompts a ‘whooo’ from the audience.  FILTH!  Len calls it ‘quick, slick, with plenty of kicks and flicks’ because he wrote this line even before the dance and he’s going to say it, dammit, whatever the quality of the thing.  He then snarks that it wasn’t a jive anyway, it was Rock’n’Roll which has a different leg action.  To which: a) it was supposed to be a jive, and that’s what it should be judged on and b) I thought it had been agreed to never mention the abomination that was the Rock’n’Roll ever again?

Nicky then falls over on the way to the Tess Circle.  The perils of Wembley!  Tess asks him if he’s finally found a love of dancing.  Ha!  (And probably not)  Nicky is pleased he’s performed at Wembley more than the others in Westlife now.  Scores: 6,8,8,8 for a total of 30.  Even the 6 was too high, if you ask me.


Next up, the ‘time machine’ is taking us back to the “1920s” for Denise and James’ Charleston.  Denise is going to be Cleopatra (69-30 BC according to Wikipedia) and Bruce makes a rubbish joke and then asks the audience to boo him, which they do.  Bruce is really weird again tonight.  Denise loved her Paso Doble last week and this week in their dance, she’s going to be Cleopatra and James an explorer.  Their VT is all about Denise not being able to jump because she’s not a BLOODY RINGER, honest.

Their ‘1920s’ dance, set in approximately 40BC, is done to a cover version from the 2000s by the Puppini Sisters of ‘Walk Like an Egyptian’, a track from the 1980s.  So, presumably, they’ve just come as ALL THE DECADES AT ONCE.  Whereas if they’d not mentioned the stupid decade thing, they could just have got away with it.

James enters as Tarzan (origin: 1910s) on a rope and Denise enters as Nancy Dell’Olio from the Tour – same props and music and everything.  Now, when I read they were Charleston-ing to Walk Like an Egyptian, I thought it’d be a car crash of epic proportions, but actually, it works really well and is one of the most interesting Charlestons I’ve seen on this show – although as our erstwhile colleague Carrie pointed out on Twitter, she did spend an age in Chicago, which has several Charleston-esque sequences in.  Despite the obvious RINGERness, I could watch that routine several times and still enjoy it. [I really enjoyed it too - this week was the point I actually became okay with the idea of Denise winning. I'm not proud of it, but there you go. - Steve]

Craig calls it the best Charleston he’s ever seen on Strictly, although (spoilers) he won’t give it as high a score as he gave Chris and Ola’s.  Darcey says it was brilliant and clean, Len liked it when Denise’s skirt flew up and says it’s the best dance of the series so far, whilst Bruno makes some Nefertiti/titty remarks and calls it the jewel of the nile.

On the Tess Circle and Tess has already pinched the topless men who carried Denise on.  And then she goes on about how much she likes the boys a few times.  Scores: 9,10,10,10 for a total of 39 and whilst that score might be a tad on the high side, it’s still the least overmarked dance of the night.  Tess makes a really, really bad joke which I won’t repeat and tells us there is gossip on Facebook and Twitter.  Gossip like how much Louis hates training?

And on that note, Louis and Flavia are next.  In Bruce’s lead in, we see people moving the set and he seems to carry on quite professionally for once, saying the people are ‘just moving the ancient relics’ – then two men come and lift him off.  Bravo, scriptwriters and Bruce, that was actually pretty funny.

The VT reminds us of JUDGEBRAWL over Louis’ dance last week.  This week, like Denise and James, they are ‘dancing through the decades’ in their American Smooth, rather than sticking to any one in particular.  Their American Smooth is Quickstep-based and the lifts involved lead into a comedy VT of Louis carrying Flavia in Fireman’s Lifts all over the place.

They’re dancing to Ray Charles’ ‘I Got a Woman’ (1950s) wearing clothes that are hard to place but could be any mid-20th century, really, and there’s a break in the middle that is taken from ‘Gold Digger’ (2000s).

As is par for the course at stupid Wembley week, the camera is so far from them for most of the performance that it’s hard to tell whether or not it’s any good.  Some of the kicks are nice and there’s an unnecessary gymnastics/breakdancing showcase in the middle which is hardly in the spirit of the dahnce – and it’s potentially a bit worrying that Flavia’s resorting to those tricks already.  Darcey says she loves the tacky tricks, but says he needs to save them for SHOWDANCE (well, ‘just in case you’re in the final’ which is the same thing).  Len thinks it’s just an enhanced Quickstep rather than an American Smooth.  I thought American Smooth was essentially just an enhanced whatever you choose, but then I’m no expert. [Something about FRED AND GINNNNGE, that's all I know. - Steve] Bruno is disappointed that they didn’t have any of the side by side Hollywood-esque moves.  Craig says it was refreshing and nice that they weren’t doing Fred’n’Ginge.  Bruno snarks that ‘it’s still wrong’.  Bruno being the arbiter of the PURITY OF DAHNCE.  Who knew?

Up in the Tess Circle and the ‘olympic feel of the arena’ comments come out.  Le sigh.  Scores: 7, 8, 8, 7 for a total of 30.  Not their best score, and an agreement from Craig and Bruno despite the sniping.




Next it’s Richard and Erin, which is the dance I’m most looking forward to after what they said about it on It Takes Two this week.  Last week, Richard loved gurning his way through the Charleston and he and Erin are going to the 1980s for their salsa, via the medium of ‘Club Tropicana’.  He is very excited to be sharing the stage with Girls Aloud and Kylie.  LOLGAY.  But also: who wouldn’t be?

The stage is the best one of the night: the central platform is a beach, replete with three backing dancers in nothing but tight yellow speedos – one of whom is Shem from the dance troupe - and some sparkly palm trees and a deckchair (Which Richard sits in reading a ‘Strictly Gossip’ magazine) and surrounding it is water full of turtles.  But what’s more exciting, is that this is ERIN ISLAND, for REAL.  Now, you may not know about Erin Island, but our good friend Monkseal has been mentioning it for the past several series, and here it is – I can only wonder if this is Erin’s swansong to the show (before taking up her destined role as Head Judge), because how on earth can she top that?

Then the singer fluffs the lines massively – the main line he misses being CLUB TROPICANA.  IT’s the name of the song, you idiot.  He also James Arthurs it later by saying ‘fun and sadness’ instead of ‘sunshine’.  The dance itself is not brilliant, nor irredeemably terrible, but it’s pretty clunky and Richard’s hips don’t move very much – and again, much of it is seen from OUTER SPACE, stupid Wembley cams.  It ends with Richard pushing Erin onto a crash mat in the sea, i.e. KILLING HER, so he can take the speedo-clad men. 

Bruce is shocked that any man could forsake Erin just for some other men.  Bruno is very excited about the banana hammocks and says he bets Richard can’t wait to go back to Speedo world (other brands are available) and it was sketchy but fun.  Craig says it was stompy and flat footed and Richard’s hips need to do more figure 8s.  He likes the boys though.  Richard asks if he has a VPL and Darcey mishears and says ‘what, no knickers?’ And Richard’s all ‘I can’t go commando on the BBC’ (not in this climate anyway).  Bruce has had enough of the gayness and the filth and packs them of to the Tess Circle, where Kristina is getting drunk.  Scores: 5, 6, 7, 6 for a total of 24.  Tess says ‘it’s not your lowest score’.  Thanks for the faint praise, Tess!

Coming up, the “60s” with Dani and Vincent and the “90s” with Kimberley and Pasha.  But we’re back in the 1970s now, with Team Brendleton (sorry, that’s terrible, I know).  Bruce reminds the audience he was on telly in the 70s (and the 90s, Bruce) and pleas for them to bring the Generation Game back.  Victoria loved her quickstep last week and tries (fails) to sound excited about Wembley.  They do a 1970s impression in hippy gear, which really is late 60s and early 70s and probably not 1978 when ‘Bicycle Race’ came out.  Victoria can jump better than Denise.  It’s possibly the only thing she can do better though (cycling aside).  And Victoria is going to fly.  I think we’re all worried.

The costuming for their paso doble is inspired: Victoria’s in a lycra glittery catsuit (very period) with Union Jack printing and a caped skirt in the same colours.  Her hair is crimped and woven with blue and she has mad eye make up on – so far, so glam rock.  She enters flying on a bike, which she doesn’t even pedal – meaning Victoria is probably trailing Louis in gratuitous use of Olympian skills right now.  Then Brendan capes about for ages with a Union Flag whilst Victoria is nowhere to be seen and he gets it stuck on his face at one point.  This song, by the way, is entirely wrong for a Paso – it has totally the wrong tempo and rhythm.  And whereas odd song choice paid off for Denise and Brendan, here it really doesn’t.  Victoria looks a bit lost swishing the skirt (I can just imagine Fern screaming at her TV at home) and she mostly stands about looking angry – although she at least does angry face quite well.  Her arms aren’t very strong and she’s a bit awkward, although she can indeed jump.  She then staggers down into the final pose and it’s all a bit ungainly – but that whole routine was hampered massively by the music.  It just wasn’t much of a paso.

Bruno says the shaping wasn’t there and Brendan was being too ambitious in the choreography.  Craig says her arms need shaping and her shoulders need to be down, Darcey says it started well but she was overwhelmed by the space (which is stupidly big and can hardly help any of them).  Len says the jumping was a bit repetitious but there were some good twist turns and sometimes her arms were placed.  Darcey tries to interject and Len snarks that she’s had her turn.

In the Tess Circle, Victoria says she enjoyed it ‘but unfortunately you don’t get points for that’.  Scores: 5, 6, 7, 6 for a total of 24 and a space rooted alongside Richard and Erin at the bottom of the judges’ leaderboard unless anyone else coming up is worse, but I imagine that’s unlikely.

Dani and Vincent next and Bruce makes a rubbish joke about hotpants which you can guess the punchline to.  After their visit to the 1950s via the medium of a 1970s TV show, they’re off to the 1960s for their quickstep although Vincent’s bright pink costume still looks a bit 1950s in style.  Maybe he just liked it so much he decided to stay there.  Their comedy VT is all about how exciting and big Wembley is and how TINY they both are.  I’m so bored of a) Wembley and b) the tiny storyline. 

They’re dancing to ‘You Can’t Hurry Love’, which apparently hasn’t been a quickstep song since Will and Hanna in series two although it feels like it’s been used a lot more than that.  The song, by the way, is from 1966 and the lighting is in the design of the colour test card, first used in 1967, so hooray for being closer to your decade than most other people. 

As usual, the camera work means you can barely see this dance, but from what you can see, they’re struggling a bit with the enormity of the space, and Dani’s kicks could have more conviction, but the pace is really quick and they look good together. [I wasn't really taken with this - Dani's face just looked so strained throughout. - Steve]

Craig calls it fast, efficient and fearless.  Darcey says it was light and clean.  Len says the quantity of steps and the quality of movement were there.  Bruno calls her his ‘gorgeous little Smurf’.  Isn’t that a bit heightist?  (Like the whole of this series hasn’t been a bit heightist where these two are concerned) and liked the Motown touches they put in the routine.

Tess notes that they had a good go at covering the whole floor.  Vincent says it was too much and Dani concurs, as do I.  Tess drops the ‘dark horse’ bomb and Dani says you’ll have to ask ‘Papa Smurf’ (Vincent.  Also: ewww) whilst Vincent calls her the ‘Dark Pony’.  They don’t really help themselves, do they.  Scores: 9, 9, 9, 9 for a total of 36 which I think it probably would have earned in a smaller space, though I’m not convinced the performance we’ve just seen merits it.  But then the scores tonight are... something else.

Next up it’s  Kimberley and ‘Pasta’ and Bruce decides his mistake is a thing now and calls him Pasha Carbonara.  Last week they got their best score ever and were second on the leaderboard but nobody voted for them so they were in the dance off.  This week is the samba.  Pasha says there’s a lot of shaking in the carnival in Brazil and Kimberley says she likes to shake it.  Like everyone else, they’re going to resort to extreme showboating this week in the form of Pasha’s tits. And Kimberley’s judging by her outfit – something for everyone!  She enters shimmying with a long skirt attached to the stage.  There’s then a clumsy bit where she has to undo it, but they recover.  The song, by the way, is ‘Livin La Vida Loca’ but nothing else about this screams ‘90s’.  Stupid theme.

The dance is better when they’re side by side rather than together, as they’re in sync and working things well, but it’s energetic and fun, if a little strained in a few places – not as strained as the singer trying to get out the last refrain though.  MINE EARS.  Darcey says she needs to do more work on her core, but otherwise it was fiery and she can shake her tush.  Bruce asks what a tush is.  Oh, Bruce.  Len says he’ll pickle his walnuts if she’s in the dance-off.  I’d rather hoped we would be free from that image this series, but… it’s Len.  Bruno makes a perv joke about her reaching his core.  Craig says her steps were fabulous and he hopes people vote.  Bruce then tries to make more pasta jokes but Pasha has already run away.

In the Tess Circle, Kimberley says she had so much fun  She and Tess pervs over Pasha’s chest before reminding them they were in the dance-off.  Sensitive as ever, Daly.  Scores: 8, 8, 9, 9 for a total of 34 and their joint highest score today. [Craig and Darcey are ON MY LIST for apparently thinking Kimberley's samba was no better than Lisa's. Fuck's sake. - Steve] Tess says 'Livin La Vida Strictly'.  I think the stint of her being Bruce last week has gone to her head.  Bad Tess!

And finally, it’s Michael and Natalie.  They’re dancing to an ‘old Frank Sinatra song’, ‘Theme from New York, New York’ which I am genuinely shocked to hear is again from the 1970s (70s domination!  Where’s Bake-Off Brendan when you need him) and was originally a Liza Minelli song –which is one of those facts I should totally know and feel ashamed about not doing.  Last week, Michael was thrown a bit when he made a mistake but this week he’s excited about BLOODY WEMBLEY.   SIGH.

Their costumes aren’t at all 70s, but that’s fine because the theme is bobbins anyway.  They have a lot of leotard, jacket and top hat wearing female dancers behind them – I’m not sure I approve of all these extra cast members everyone has tonight.  Except the residents of Erin Island and that’s only because it was exactly how I imagined her island in my head.

Anyway, the dance is elegant, with some accomplished lifts, although in one of them, Natalie’s skirt smacks Michael right in the face and in another he looks completely terrified of dropping her, although he doesn’t.  His legs are a bit awkward in a couple of places and he’s not much of a one for the kicks, but these are small things in a bloody good routine.  It earns them a standing ovation and Bruce tells him to remember it forever.  Michael just says he was frightened of dropping Natalie and asks who would believe he nearly left six weeks ago?  Well, anyone who’s seen his Latin, Bruce, but bless his heart.

Len says it was a proper production that deserved to be the last dance.  Bruno says he lived up to the production values but there were a couple of places where you could see the terror in his face.  Craig says it shows how hard he’s been rehearsing and Darcey invokes the dreaded Fred’n’Ginge and says the lift was perfect.  Bruce says it’s amazing what Natalie has done and Natalie says ‘it’s not just me!’  Bless these two, I love them so much.

Tess says the lift was ambitious and Natalie says she trusts him and Michael says he was rubbish at catching when he was a cricketer.  Tess asks if he has his eye on the goal.  Wrong sport, Tess.  Scores: 9, 9, 9, 8 for a total of 35.  Bruno is booed and he says it was for the arms, although I thought his arms were pretty decent and his legs needed work.  Still, what do I know?  (And of course I couldn’t see half of it.  THANKS CAMERAS.)

Leaderboard:
Denise and James 39
Dani and Vincent 36
Michael and Natalie 35
Kimberley and Pasha 34
Lisa and Robin 32
Nicky and Karen 30
Louis and Flavia 30
Richard and Erin 24
Victoria and Brendan 24

I’m not sure what kind of world we’re living in when Louis and Flavia are both below Lisa and Robin (especially after their effort tonight) and on a par with that clomping about Nicky and Karen did.  But also: OUCH at the gulf of marks between the bottom two couples and everyone else.

Well, we made it, everyone.  Just the results show to go and we can put the horror of WEMBLEY behind us for another year.  And please for EVER?  It just doesn't feel fair on the performers to make them use that space, and it certainly isn't fair on us viewers.  

Bruce calls it 'Ballroom's Biggest Night of the Year'.  Latin didn't come out of the experience quite so well,, however.  He reminds us KYLIE will be here 'tomorrow' and also Girls Aloud with their slightly ropey new single.  Tess reminds us to give to Children in Need and then the pros and celebrities all run back on with Aliona centre stage - then all the pro/celeb couples get namechecked and do a little dance - were they running under time or something?  I know it's in front of a live audience, but the live audience will be seeing them all again in a few minutes for the results.  Fireworks explode, Bruno cries, we get told to keep dancing, and then it keeps going a bit and Brendan showboats all over the place.  I'm not sure that was all entirely planned.

Anyway, join me tomorrow for KYLIE!  And someone going home as well, probably Richard and Erin seeing as there's no way she will ever top tonight.

1 comment:

Phil said...

Just read this and love it as always! But even though Lisa Snowdon was also overmarked, she only got 30 for her samba which was way better than that shit.