Strictly Come Dancing Spooktacular Halloween week 4
Strictly’s Halloween week is one of my favourite themes. The wardrobe, make-up and hair departments deserve massive credit for the transformation of the dancing couples. Tom Daley is in the audience tonight to watch the 12 couples take to the haunted ballroom floor.
Thrillerkicks off the night with the Strictly Pros dressed in ghoulish white and black and the celebrities in blood red.
Bruce kicks off the Gangnam style dancing for a bit of current interest before the first couple take to the floor.
Dani and Vincent are the first couple to dance this week, and they take on the Cha Cha Cha. Dani is dressed in orange (including socks) and Vincent has a blond wig as they dance to the Scooby Doo theme. It’s not totally clean but a surprise ‘reveal’ from Anton finishes the routine on a high note. Len thought the dance was like a “sausage sandwich” – tasty and satisfying and setting you up for the day. He loved it. Bruno was confused by Vincent’s blonde wig but he liked the tight footwork and timing, but he wants expansion. Craig thought it was clean but he wants more extension through Dani’s lines. Darcey loved the speed and was happy with Dani’s work and disagreed with Craig.
They score 27 from the judges pumpkins (the score is out of 40)
Richard and Erin dance the Paso Doble on Halloween week which should be a great choice. Richard tackles the cape quite well, and once in hold you can see the improvement although Richard isn’t sharp enough. Bruno liked the drama “Gary Newman in a temper” but the execution wasn’t refined enough and the timing wasn’t there. Craig liked the cape work from Richard but wants more “earth” and he was disappointed, saying the jeté en tournant shouldn’t have been attempted. Darcey liked the character of a spooky matador and she can see the work but the tilt of the hips isn’t there. Len said “you great big butch bull fighter” and he agreed that it could have done with a bit more shaping, but he loved the drama.
They score 22
Lisa and Robin “wicked” Windsor dance the Charleston to Witch Doctor this week. They head to Hogwarts for training… Starting at the blackboard, Lisa grabs Robin from his school desk and their crazy routine kicks off with Lisa in spookiest green tights. It’s fun but Lisa loses the odd moment and it seems quite heavy in between the tricks and high moments. Craig liked the acting but not the dancing. No cross or swivel, so it’s not the Charleston. Darcey loved the speed and didn’t quite agree with Craig. Len said it was fun and speedy. He thought it was a parody of a Charleston and thought it was great. Bruno thought the pace was “facial aerobics” but the timing was great and very enjoyable to watch. Robin takes responsibility for the lack of swivel as he put rubber soles on Lisa’s shoes as she had been slipping in rehearsals.
They score 26
Sid and Ola dance the Cha Cha Cha, and start off with a pair of guns as they have Ghostbusters as their theme. They have the least amount of Strictlyfication for Halloween – plain beige costumes – and Sid gives it his best shot given Ola’s difficulties this week, but it wasn’t great. Darcey liked cheeky Sid. Len thinks it’s all too safe and wants Sid to be less careful of going wrong. Bruno said “it looks like it’s smothered in ectoplasm” but he wants Sid to come back next week and do it better. Craig said “Halloween nightmare.”
They score 17
Nicky and Karen dance the Tango. Nicky brews the potions and brings Karen to life to Weird Science. It’s sharp and has plenty of character throughout. Len liked it, except the stomping, as did Bruno. Craig wants Nicky to sort out his posture and doesn’t want him to pick his feet up so much, but he really liked it. Darcey loved the entertainment but wants less stomping and more stalking in the Tango.
They score 26
Fern and Artem “Chiller” Chigventsev dance the American Smooth to Killer Queen. Fern has great extensions once she’s off her silver throne and Artem has choreographed a great routine for her while channelling his inner terminator with a ripped outfit. Bruno thought it was “too beige” and it didn’t match the character of the music. Darcey liked the bad queen in Fern but she doesn’t want her to lift up her shoulders when Artem picks her up. Len wanted Artem to push Fern more. She has the “how” but not the “wow.”
They score 21
Denise and James “jinx” Jordan dance the Cha Cha Cha to Circus Freak. Starting in a cage, Denise responds to grey haired James’s crack of the whip. Denise has perfect characterisation and her hips are really working it. Craig loved the timing and energy. Len said the standard was good but he wanted crisper leg action. Bruno said “kinky and slinky and all in the best possible taste!”
They score 28
Michael and Natalie “living dead” Lowe dance the Quickstep. After a bit of a shimmy in silver and pink from Natalie, Michael barely touches the floor, travelling well and looking confident. Darcey loved the routine and loved Michael’s topline even when he was tired at the end. Light and precise feet; no messy transitions. But she was sold by his cheeky grin. Len loved the dance. Bruno said “that was more than magical, it was a miracle! I cannot believe what we’ve seen, what a transformation.” And Craig clapped.
They score 31
Victoria and Brendan dance the Tango to White Wedding. Dressed in a bridal gown and chains, they have the look. It’s strong and kooky with sharp turns and great characterisation. Victoria’s turning is improving and the end is perfect as they collapse in front of the crypt. Len said “this was a proper tango” even though there was a little moment. Bruno loved the haunting beauty with a hint of madness. He absolutely loved it. Craig thought the routine was brilliant and Darcey loved seeing the musicality and fight in Victoria.
They score 31
Colin and Kristina dance the Salsa to Superstitious. Colin is the wizard and Kristina is his cat. They launch straight into a lift, with Kristina all fur puffs and flashing sequins. It’s a little heavy from Colin and he went wrong. He could do with more attack and really working the floor. Craig wants more concentration on Colin’s footwork which looks flat-footed and messy. He liked the disco groove going on. Darcey liked Colin’s long arms and the sauce of the salsa. Len picked up on the mistakes.
They score 24
Lewis and Flavia dance the Tango among a tower of cobwebs. Zombie Lewis takes Flavia in hold and they cross the floor in sharp staccato movements with Lewis going for a bite of Flavia’s neck to keep in character. Lewis finishes with some of his gymnastic training. Craig said “ineffable, darling. I loved it.” Darcey said “spookily good.” But she wants Lewis to watch the kicks because Lewis can’t have higher legs than the girl. Len wishes he could go back in time and have another look at the routine. Bruno said “that really was a tango with a bite. Amazing execution. The first killer tango of the season.”
They score 35 (the first nine of the series and the highest score tonight)
Kimberley and Pasha “creepy” Kovalev dance the Paso Doble and they have Little Red Riding Hood as their Halloween theme. To a howling moon, Red Riding Hood searches for Grandma’s house. Finding the Wolf, they take hold and Kimblerly quickly loses her cape. They are dancing to Hungry Like the Wolf from Duran Duran and it’s matching the routine very closely with Pasha hunting her down. Darcey loved the intensity and scared look in Kimberley’s eyes, and the rond de jambe. Len said it was very competent and would have liked a tad more aggression. Bruno found love and hate, and excellent lines. Craig though it was fiery and punchy with fantastic shaping.
They score 31
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