It is the glitz and the glam and time for the longest running dance show in England that has spawned spin offs all over the world including the US Dancing with the Stars, that’s right, it is time for Strictly Come Dancing! At the launch show several weeks ago we saw the pairs partnered up and prepare for this day and today marked the first of two shows to show off the couples’s hard work over the last few weeks. We open with a fun reminder of who is on the show this year and of course the coveted credits before the dancing begins.
The Strictly music sounds and with the retirement of Brucie for this year we have Tess and Claudia as our beautiful hosts this year which was a great choice. One question many who have watched the show however ask is who got Claudia to give up her eye liner and put on pink? We love you Claudia but that was not a fun choice they did for you. We are reminded that this week is going to be a double header and the first 6 couples go tonight. The judges make a fun dance themed entrance which is different than usual and really does get the tone going and get you excited for the show. Enter the stars of the show!
There are the obligatory reminders that this week there is no voting but next week it starts and then those in the bottom will have to do the dreaded dance off. A rundown of the dancers that will be taking the floor tonight so let’s dig in and give the rundown of how the dances went for the couples on their first night on the floor.
Caroline Flack & Pasha Kovalev: For their first week Pasha and Caroline are doing a Cha Cha to the Jackson 5 song “Can you feel it”. The training room is looking pretty good with Pasha schooling Caroline that the Cha Cha is a fun and playful dance, and he should know as a Latin specialist. Caroline asks if it is the hardest dance but Pasha tells her it is actually the easiest, and works on getting her to smile more during the dance. On the dance floor Caroline comes out with a sassy, well done Cha Cha. She clearly is having fun and the choreography is cheeky and made to feel like a fun dance party and that really comes across well. Another win for Pasha in the choreography department, he does always seem to deliver. What did the judges think however? Well Len thought it was like a fresh glass of champagne, Bruno loved how expressive her arms were, Craig liked her groove and would have liked to see a bit more hip action but he always nitpicks while Darcy said she was a natural dancer. Scores: 6, 7, 7,7 Total: 27.
Tim Wonnacot & Natalie Lowe: Another fun Cha Cha and this one is to Captain & Tennille “Shop Around”. In the training room Tim looks to be having a little trouble getting the steps but he is upbeat about it and it will come together. Natalie even takes a trip to his show bargain hunt and they look to have fun. On the dance floor, it is a bargain hunt theme a routine with a start in bidding and then Natalie takes the floor Tim looks like he is focusing very hard and there is not to many smile throughout however you can see he is trying. It is not the best Cha Cha ever seen but it is still an enjoyable little dance to watch. What did the judges think? Bruno appreciated the confidence and that he embraced it, Craig did not enjoy the dance at all and did not like the wide gate comparing them to soiled nappies OUCH! Darcy tried to be gentle and she said that the dance was entertaining and cheeky, Len finally said that you must not step forward on your heel in the Cha Cha and his footwork wasn’t very good but he came out full on with personality. Scores: 3,5,5,5 Total: 18
Jake Wood & Janette Manrara: A Tango to “Toxic”. In the training room the dance is essentially going to embody his character on East enders Max although the footwork seems to be going a bit rough, his frame is looking fairly good. The Tango is a difficult dance to draw as your first dance but he has an upbeat outlook to it. On the dance floor Jake is strong and leads well keeping his frame well. It slipped a little towards the end but overall he does a fantastic job and gives a very strong Tango that is impressive for a first week. What did the judges think? Craig was impressed and pointed out he took the lead and it was sharp labeling Jake one to watch, Darcy thought it was cool and said he looked comfortable with good attack. While Len said it was far better than he expected and appreciated the spirit and body contact and Bruno said he was a brute in all the best ways, he loved it. Scores: 7,7,7,7
Judy Murray & Anton Du Beke: A waltz to “‘Mull Of Kintyre” by Wings. In the training room Anton travels to Scotland to work with Judy and she is having a little trouble letting him lead. However as a special surprise as they continue along on the training Anton brings a Birthday cake for Judy on her Birthday, sweet but how will the dance turn out? On the dance floor the first thing you notice is Anton in a kilt but the dance itself has a lovely flow and overall is a nice start with a well done waltz. Although there were a few little bobbles here and there. What did the judges think? Darcy felt that Judy was allowing her nerves to win and it was a little edgy for her, Len commented that he saw Anton’s bonnie prince Charlie but for the dance said that Judy need to work on her posture some. Bruno said that she looked beautiful but that she hit some turbulence the dance was a new experience but she needs some work, finally Craig felt that Anton was dragging her around a little bit. Scores: 3,4,6,5
Scott Mills & Joanne Clifton: A Cha Cha to “Rock DJ” by Robbie Williams. In the training room Scott does not think that the Cha Cha is easy at all and he is having a little bit of trouble. Joanne is a Robbie Williams fan girl and Robbie sends a good luck message to Scott to give him a little extra support so hopefully it all goes well on the dance floor. On the dance floor the dance starts with a lot of faffing about and when it finally kicks into gear there is not a whole lot of real Cha Cha involved in it. He does give a good go of what he has been given though it is not my favorite dance of the evening by any means. I think Joanne let Scott down with the choreography. What did the judges think? Len thought the footwork was poor and that the dance would have been better on the radio, Bruno said he had the club vibe going but that it did not travel down to the feet. Craig as usual had the most to say and said it was horribly stompy and that it looked like he might be having a tantrum, Darcy said it was cheeky but it might have been better in a nightclub. Scores: 2,4,5,5
Pixie Lott & Trent Whiddon: A Jive to Jive to ‘Shake It Off’ by Taylor Swift. In the training room Pixie looks to be picking things up pretty fast although she hits Trent in the face once. Then they head off to Fashion week where Trent watches the photographers and they call it research, lets see how it translates on the dance floor. On the dance floor Pixie brings some strong energy to the dance and she really gives it a try. Her footwork is a little bit weak but overall it is not a bad Jive, this is a hard dance to draw first week. What did the judges think? Bruno says that it is like Lolita doing the Jive he loved it but wanted to see a better sharpness, Craig really enjoyed it said the energy was fantastic and that there was a little hesitation in a side kick. Darcy loved the armography and wanted to see better leg action, while Len said there was a lot of energy and content he thought it was terrific. Scores: 7,6,7,7