Strictly Come Dancing:
On Friday 5th and Saturday 6th October 2012 Strictly Come Dancing glitzed back onto our screens over a two night weekend. Who was about to sparkle, dazzle and delight on the night(s)?
Followed through over two nights on Saturday also, no couples would face elimination in the first week as a try-out session to accustom themselves to the format of the show. This is a valid decision.
Here we’ll give review, advice and agreement or disagreement on all things Strictly, along with Judges scores from Craig Revel-Horwood, Darcey Bussell, Len Goodman and Bruno Tonioli, respectively.
Part 1 – Friday 5th October
Fern and Artem
Cha Cha Cha
Signed Sealed Delivered – Stevie Wonder
From the get go Artem Chigvintsev joined telly lovely Fern Britton, with his very focal ‘chicken fillets’ to jaw drop at. Setting the premise of the show as first out is always the most difficult challenge, though Fern made sure to be confident, essential for the start but Craig was impressed with her hands, despite footwork and all else needing work. Has the personality, now needs to add the steps fully to begin ‘building a dancer’ piece by piece.
Score – 4, 5, 5, 5
Nicky and Karen
I Wonder Why – Curtis Stigers
Hunk Nicky Byrne from pop group Westlife partnered the new pro dancer on the show, Karen Hauer. It was a little too ‘lone star’ with Byrne on his own for quite some time. Byrne, separated from his partner, had his hands in his pockets and looked slightly sloppy as a result. Though he might be a ‘looker’ that gets a few votes to carry him through, he’ll need more skill to survive the series.
Bruno noted they needed more intimacy and connectivity. Craig was miffed that new pro Karen incorporated a lift into the first show, as lifts are technically banned early on in the competition, until a free style final performance or American Smooth dance.
We agree. Lifts, or the ‘Brendan Cole effect’ as its known, is not acceptable in the early stages. Breaking rules is paramount to penalty. Craig was miffed and explained he would lower the marks for this also, which any pro should expect.
Scores – 2, 5, 5, 5
Michael and Natalie
If You Don’t Know Me by Now – Simply Red
Cricketer Michael Vaughan partnered Natalie Lowe to a boring and lacklustre entry. Devoid of personality and posture problems galore, shared from the judges saw his “bum hang out like a hanging basket.”
Scores – 5, 5, 6, 4
Victoria and Brendan
Cha Cha Cha
Spinning Around – Kylie Minogue
Olympian cycler Victoria Pendleton danced to Kylie’s Spinning Around. Stereotype aside, it was a slow start on the steps before flash show off Brendan Cole typically puts himself over instead of his partner. It was flat as a result without any charisma involved. Pendleton shed a few tears realising the result would not be favourable. Technically, I would have given her a 1 as that’s what it was worth, despite my respect for her as an Olympian, she should not gain favouritism as a result on the show, and she respects that notion also.
Scores – 3, 4, 5, 4
Colin and Kristina
Cha Cha Cha
I Got You (I Feel Good) – James Brown
Colin Salmon, movie star in the James Bond films since joining Pierce Brosnan’s era, had the feisty female Kristina Rhiannov.
The pairing is suited, with high potential to have more style as the show progresses. For the first show, some would naturally be off in minor parts, though Colin proved a possible contender if he works at it fully with improvement. Though a tad slow integration to the dance, there were good steps, smiles and personality. We can’t wait for a bond villain esq Tango.
After the dance they were served a martini, while host Sir Bruce Forsyth enjoyed a cup of cocoa.
Scores – 4, 7, 6, 6
Denise and James
With You I’m Born Again – Billy Preston and Syreeta
Essex babe Denise Van Outen had lippy James Jordan. Despite the character off set, both had a strong partnership with one another, added with pleasing spins and effulgent glow and fluid transitions. Style, elegance and extended legs proved profitable. It was the best of the first part of the night dancers.
Bruce even sounded like the uncle of Terry Tibbs stating “Beautiful.” Len noted Denise needed to sort out her foot work.
p.s Please do not brand Denise as an “Essex Girl” from awful ‘reality’ docu ‘soap’ The Only Way Is Essex (TOWIE) which is NOT a representation of Essex and most living in Essex do not say “shut -up” and all that tomfoolery. She’s a real Essex girl who is a lively source with no hoopla and lets it ‘all hang out’ ‘cards on the table.’ Glad we got that sorted.
Scores – 6, 6, 6, 7
Part Two – Saturday 6th October
Kimberley and Pasha
Cha Cha Cha
Domino – Jessie J
Girls Aloud pop star Kimberley Walsh joined to the hips of Pascha Kovalev. There was an awkward pout out at the beginning which lacked charisma and looked more of a merry go round. It lacked the little piece of pizazz. Len said they needed to “make an impression” especially on week 1.
Scores – 7, 7, 7, 7
Sid and Ola
I Won’t Give Up – Jason Mraz
Soap Actor Sid Owen bagged Ola Jordan, a previous champ, she noted, in what became a very good rendition of story telling with strong narrative added to presentation and integrity. A shock to all watching, Owen looked strong on week 1.
Scores – 6, 6, 7, 7
Johnny and Aliona/Iveta
Cha Cha Cha
Drive My Car – The Beatles
With Aliona Vilani suffering an injury benching her for the first week initially now for another following, the eldest contestant Johnny Ball had a stand in partner for the starting week. Vilani will return in two weeks. The pro looked a lot better than Aliona usually dances. Consider hiring her and boot Ariola out. The stand in was called Iveta, by the way.
Lively Ball had a competent outing to begin with, despite the first week and accustoming himself to the show.
Score – 3, 5, 5, 4
Dani and Vincent
Open Arms – Mariah Carey
Teen actor for the CBBC channel, 23 year old Dani Harmer had lothario Vincent Simone to guide her. Seeing this young lady who still looks a teen in those revealing outfits highly unsettles me and some others and questions her placement on the show. Technically she is an adult. Though we mark and critique based on performance alone. Her outing was basic to begin with and needs more of a shock impression to stamp her place on the competition.
Scores – 5, 5, 6, 5
Lisa and Robin
Cha Cha Cha
Think – Aretha Franklin
Doubts over skilled beefcake Robin Windsor gaining plump princess of comedy clips Lisa Riley were cast initially, though not one to judge before shows, Riley silenced her critics with a shockingly fabulous sparkle of intent. A minor lift at the end doesn’t force a double standard with us, we agree it shouldn’t be accepted, however the first week is a safety net as no eliminations, though it did show Riley’s capabilities more than others who lifted, when they should have remained grounded for the real competition next week.
Scores – 8, 8, 7, 7
Richard and Erin
You Don’t Bring Me Flowers – Klaus Hallen Orchestra
Showbiz entertainment reporter Richard Arnold took to the floor with Strictly honourable Erin Boag, original on the show since its birth ten years ago.
Boag always makes the best of every partner given and Arnold was no exception.
Scores – 5, 5, 7, 5
Jerry and Anton
Cha Cha Cha
Everybody Loves to Cha Cha – Sam Cooke
Sultry minx and supermodel Jerry Hall held hands with Anton DuBeke. As the other half of the original couple, Anton has struggled to find a good partner, though glamour puss Hall may be a slow starter but can go far in the competition should they maintain a higher profile with the required steps and some diva style on the dancefloor. Currently the action was minimal.
Scores – 3, 5, 5, 5
Louis and Flavia
Cha Cha Cha
Forget You – Cee Lo Green
Male Olympian gymnast Louis Smith scored Flavia Cacace. As a dynamic duo and the expertise of Flavia, Louis could learn to be less “loose”, as Len mentioned. Craig felt it was “awkward.” Smith, hasn’t put in much effort as others and seems slightly lethargic and is another ‘looker’ which gets carried but female fancy votes than the talent on offer. Those are his challenges.
Scores – 6, 8, 6, 7
So what of the first weekend offering? The dress of Tess (Daly), half the celebs divided and Darcey Bussell’s quips of “Yeah” constantly irking viewers with a strong line-up of pairings that mostly matched wasn’t enough to trounce competition overall on rival channels, namely, the X Factor, with which it has an unknown rivalry with, though stood steady and made a massive impact, displayed a show that was relevant to audience need, capable to deliver the necessary fulfillment of onlookers and captured a snapshot of people being able to learn their hidden depths to a slight or overall talent. Viewers are indeed hooked for the next week with a positive attitude going into it.