Strictly Come Dancing Week 1 | Saturday night
The Strictly pro dancers kick off round two with a novel intro from dressing room to stage.
Good to see that Darcey Bussell has a stylist with taste, in an understated golden embellished dress – but who is dressing Tess Daly ? Loving Robin Windsor’s sparkling vest though. Anita Dobson is back for more – this time from the audience! Karen Hardy and Jason Donovan are on the red button.
Kimberley Walsh and Pasha Kovalev are the first to take to the floor with the Cha Cha Cha tonight. It’s a good start; Kimberley could get into the floor a little more and work those shapes with her hips but she looks happy and confident even if the nerves aren’t far behind. Pasha always comes up with innovative routines and this one is no exception.
Len called Kimberley “Nimble Kimble” and wanted more pressure on the floor, but she’s made a fantastic impression. Bruno said Kimberley could sell ice to Eskimos and commented on how glossy it was. Craig recognised the dance talent and loved the timing, finding the routine incandescent. Darcey loved the wow factor and wants hip action by strengthing the core.
They score 28
Sid Owen and Ola Jordan dance the waltz; Sid in tails and Ola in whispy moonlit blue. Sid is quite strong and doing a good job of leading Ola, though he slid along the floor at one point and sometimes looked as though he was struggling to keep up with the timing. But it was really well acted, as you’d expect from an EastEnder of 20 years’ experience.
Bruno could not believe it. I wasn’t expecting the intensity and erect posture, and loved the creation of the moves. He was pleasantly surprised and said it was very, very good. Craig pointed out Sid’s hands and arms, but loved the movement around the floor and the storytelling. Darcey loved the presentation and the intensity but she wants to see the change of direction from Sid’s core, not his shoulders. Len said Sid scrubbed up well and loved the movement and said it was a good job.
They score 26
Johnny Ball has a temporary partner following the injury sustained by Aliona Vilani two weeks ago in training. Iveta Lukosiute and Johnny dance the Cha Cha Cha with Johnny singing along. Iveta is working every beat, leaving Johnny with little to do, but he’s doing his best. Arms are a bit all over the place and he’s skipping around the floor rather than using it with his hips, but it’s a fun routine.
Craig wasn’t a fan of the distracting miming and said Johnny looked as though he had a disorder of the central nervous system, and wants more fluidity. Darcey liked the energy and said the partner change doesn’t make it easy. Darcey wants the Latin dances to be more on the ball of the foot – Mr Johnny Ball! Len said it was all a bit Last of the Summer Wine but he enjoyed it. Bruno felt Johnny was a little out of tune be he’s looking forward to seeing his ballroom.
They score 17
Dani Harmer and Vincent Simone, aka the Smurfs, hit the floor with a waltz. Dani isn’t secure in the turns but they are both in tune with the music and very elegant in hold.
Darcey was impressed with the illusion Dani created even though she’s small. Len says it’s all in the detail; it was close but needs slightly better posture and less wobbly spins. Bruno noticed all the tension in Dani’s face but said the talent is there. Craig wants a fully extended leg in the developpe and says that Dani is going wrong on the spins because she is spotting the floor.
They score 21
Lisa Riley and Robin Windsor dance the Cha Cha Cha and from the get go Lisa is on fire. She has loved the training and it shows. She too needs to use the floor more, and her arms are quite wild, but it’s great high energy and she has a mean move right in front of the judges.
I am loving Darcey’s intelligent comments which make such a change from the scripted remarks of the other judges. She has also taken note of the criticisms from last night and cut out the extraneous words. Len thought it was great; whatever was missing in technique was made up for in enthusiasm. Bruno said it was grand and exuberant entertainment. He said he’d never seem people in the audience look so happy. Craig said “three words darling. You can dance.” Darcey loves someone who can take risks and is looking forward to watching Lisa in the show.
They score 30 – the highest score of the weekend so far….
Richard Arnold and Erin Boag dance the waltz, in Richard’s own words, “like a collapsed Pavlova.” He has a cheesy grin and is stamping around the floor. There’s a fair bit of gapping between them too, and Richard’s frame needs a lot of work.
Bruno said Richard looked as though he was in the trance of the sedated, and found it boring. Craig disagreed and liked his grin but his transitions are lumpy and he has “spatulistic” hands. Darcey missed the real Richard in the waltz and wants Richard to take the music home with him, to really get used to it. Len wanted a waltz with strict technique and said Richard’s footwork was the best of any waltz he’s seen, though there are moments when it could be better.
They score 22
Jerry Hall & Anton Du Beke dance the Cha Cha Cha. Jerry says she feels like that that penguin in Happy Feet. She is tall for dancer, and predictably starts slowly with a red carpet entrance, but the dance never speeds up. Issues with timing, even so, spoil the routine and Jerry spends too much time standing around wiggling her arms and grinning wildly.
Craig said “you’ve certainly taken minimal to a new level darling.” He noticed the quantity of wiggling too. Darcey wants Anton to make Jerry work harder on the steps, not the poses. Len wants to be excited, and it was a little bit careful. Bruno commented on how Jerry worked the frock, and enjoyed the small amount of Cha Cha in the routine.
They score 18
Louis Smith and Flavia Cacace dance the Cha Cha Cha and as expected, they roar into the dance. Louis isn’t looking entirely comfortable and his hands and arms need attention, but it’s a fast, confident, and dare I say it, sassy routine.
Darcey wasn’t expecting the rhythm and can see the hard work with the hip action. Len thought it wasn’t a gold medal performance; it’s too loose and needs to be crisper. Bruno enjoyed the snake hips, but there is a danger of over-extending and losing the rhythm. Craig found it a little bit awkward and thought he was very serious through the routine.
They score 27
Lisa and Robin are at the top of the leaderboard, and tonight’s scores will be carried over to next week, where the public vote is counted. The bottom two couples face the dance-off. The judges save their favourite and the couple with the lowest votes will face, in Len’s words, “the boulevard of broken dreams.”
It Takes Two starts on Monday 8th October at 6.30pm, every week night for the duration of the series.
All photographs © BBC Pictures. Strictly no unauthorized reproduction.