Strictly Come Dancing week 8
Eight celebrities and just four weeks remaining.
Dani and Vincent kick off the show with a samba to Beyoncé. Dani starts alone, sizzling with confidence in canary yellow and there is a good mix of tricky samba steps. Len thought it was brave with lots of basic steps. Bruno said it was charming and “bubblier than Babycham.” Craig loved the bounce action and body ripples and references to Beyoncé in the routine. Darcey loved the detail and attitude but she wants stronger and cleaner finishes in Dani’s arms.
bubblier than Babycham
They score 36
Kimberley and Pasha dance the tango and Kimberley starts with her game face on. Staccato and fierce, dressed in electric blue, studded with silver sequins Kimberley attacks the dance. It looks like an unresolved fight. Bruno said “the ultra vixen with a killer attitude.” He thought the dance was brilliant, “your staccato attitude was just killing it.” Craig noticed a slight wobble in the middle but he loved the drama and the storytelling all the way through. Darcey loved the moodiness and Kimberley’s pout. Len loved the mood of the dance but he thought their hold was a little loose and there were no heel leads so her feet were a little flat.
the ultra vixen with a killer attitude
They score 34
Victoria and Brendan dance the salsa this week. The floor is strewn with candy canes in lieu of the song (Candy, Robbie Williams), and Victoria is dressed in candy pink. She loses her place quite quickly and looks very flat-footed and stompy. She does look as though she’s enjoying parts of the dance but overall she lacks confidence and has to be in danger this week. Craig thought the props had more fluidity. Darcey was amazed that Victoria managed all the armography and the amazing lifts. Len thought it was “a light Victoria sponge.” He liked the clean lifts he just wants a bit more oomph. Bruno said “when you stand still, you are fabulous. You have so much to offer, and you still don’t deliver.”
a light Victoria sponge
They score 21
Louis and Flavia dance the Paso Doble to a fabulous track, Dirty Diana by Michael Jackson, which Louis has also been enjoying in training. Will it translate into his performance ? Louis isn’t quite strong enough in his arms and he’s not into the floor enough, but he is strong in his frame and his feet are fast. There’s no story here though; no connection with anyone, least of all with Flavia. It’s soft and fluffy; the polar opposite of a Paso. Darcey lost the storytelling and the arrogance; the attitude wasn’t there. Len wanted thunder and lightning not cupcakes and ice cream. “There was nothing going on.” Bruno agreed; it wasn’t the fight to the death that it should be. Craig wants acting and says that Louis can go no further unless Louis starts to act these dances.
It’s soft and fluffy; the polar opposite of a Paso
They score 27
Lisa and Robin dance the Rhumba this week. Dressed in flaming red and patting her face with a powder puff at the mirror, Lisa acts the role very well as you’d expect, but the dance is very exposing. It doesn’t suit Lisa; she is too robust with it and the fluidity is absent. The extensions aren’t there, nor is the refinement, until the final move. Len liked some of the detail but the feel of the dance wasn’t there. Bruno said it was understated and wanted a bit more power, “nice, but not overwhelming.” Craig thought it was slightly aggressive. Darcey didn’t think this was Lisa’s dance.
nice, but not overwhelming
They score 27
Michael and Natalie are next with their Argentine Tango. Can they rescue the mood tonight ? Michael has the intensity but it’s not carried through to his footwork. The lifts are there but even so he looks uncomfortable. Natalie is doing all the work. Bruno said the concentration only amounted to a series of steps. Craig thought it lacked resistance and lead from the man and it didn’t look like an Argentine Tango. Darcey loved the focus Michael has on Natalie but the mood and arrogance just isn’t there. Len said it was a full routine but the performance was lacking a bit.
the mood and arrogance just isn’t there
They score 26
Nicky and Karen dance the Charleston. Here comes the train and Karen is on the tracks. Rescued by Nicky they launch into a fairly strong routine. Nicky is trying with the swivels, and he’s acting well. Timing is good and the lifts are fun. Craig said it wasn’t a disaster and it really suited Nicky. Darcey said “it was magic. I loved it. You look like you’ve just come off that movie, The Artist.” Len liked the damsel in distress start and Bruno said it was “character driven slapstick. Imaginative, fresh, brilliant.”
damsel in distress
They score 36 to Karen’s utter astonishment!
The last couple to dance is Denise and James, who perform their American Smooth with a dangerous lift at the end. Starting quietly and with supreme elegance, they float across the floor below read lanterns. Fabulous underarm finger turns, and that final lift ? Perfect. Darcey said it was musical and graceful and extraordinary. Len said “it was like the sea. Wave after wave of effortless motion.” Bruno loved the smooth and weightless quality and seamless flow of movement, “for me, it was perfection.” Craig said it was perfect. “Another triumph.”
it was like the sea. Wave after wave of effortless motion
They score 37
All photographs © BBC Pictures. Strictly, no unauthorised reproduction.
Tonight’s Strictly music was …
Kimberley Walsh and Pasha Kovalev tango to When Doves Cry by Prince
Victoria Pendleton and Brendan Cole dance the Salsa to Candy by Robbie Williams
Denise Van Outen and James Jordan dance the American Smooth to Imagine by Eva Cassidy
Louis Smith and Flavia Cacace dance the Paso Doble to Dirty Diana by Michael Jackson
Lisa Riley and Robin Windsor dance the Rhumba to As If We Never Say Goodbye by Barbra Streisand
Michael Vaughan and Natalie Lowe dance the Argentine Tango to Bust Your Windows by Jazmine Sullivan
Nicky Byrne and Karen Hauer dance the Charleston to Doop by Doop
Dani Harmer and Vincent Simone dance the Samba to Single Ladies by Beyoncé
Strictly So Far …
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