Proper halfway - eight couples left and I have to wonder how Rachel’s feeling - her best dance (for me) last week and she ends up in the dance off?! But the rumba training looks hot! Austin meanwhile, bless him, thinks one mistake or fall and you’re out. No, not quite - if you’re popular with the public you’re in! (You are, Austin so don’t fret - we know that because of last week) Tess is wearing a curtain pole to hold up the pink curtain this week. Celeb spotting, Gary Lineker and Teddy Sheringham - next year maybe? Gethin was there - and I missed him!!! It must have been a pretty fleeting glimpse.
We’re off to a flying start with Jodie and Ian - she looks amazing and they’re so good together. A couple of footwork issues but Ian’s quicksteps are always entertaining with fantastic songs. Enjoyable. Len: Excellent posture…skipping across hot coals. Great job; Bruno: You relish and enjoy what you do; Craig: So much better than last week … like lightning, brilliant; Arlene: You whipped round that floor. Judges score: 33. Now she’s the most improved dancer.
Lisa and Brendan samba, the party dance. A nice start (gypsy turns?) but I fear the music (Rock the Boat) is letting it down - it’s very quiet and incidental. She performed it nicely but no wow factor and I’ve pretty much forgotten it already. Sometimes lacked bounce and the first rolls were more like jam mini ones than samba ones. Craig: Liked spot voltas and running promenades …overall very good; Arlene: There’s a moment of tension; Len: You’ve really really impressed (she’s tall; it’s Latin *rolls eyes*); Bruno: The rolls were good …overall a good job. Judges score: 30 - inc. a 9 from Len?!
Christine and Matt. Much expectation for the waltz after Matt’s effort with Alesha. It was lovely and she pulled it all together, however (Craig impression - if it’s good enough for Brucie, it’s good enough for me!) much as I love both them and that song, it didn’t engage me like a more ethereal song (eg. A Time for This, If I Were a Painting, or see my list on the left down there) I’ve got ‘See the Day’ as an AT. I was probably expecting too much. Arlene: Big song, big dance, your best yet; Len: I agree with Arlene - thought it was great; Bruno: Polished … refined…fluid performance; Craig: Top and bottom working in unison. Judges score: 34 - their best to date.
Cherie and James Char char char (Brucie’s still at it, hee hee). Fantastic song choice and she nailed the moves, but not quite as down and dirty (or wild) as it should be, still very ladylike. Fun though, easily her best Latin (I think her jive could be her best) Bruno: What a pair of pins - a breakthrough, I loved it; Craig: A little bit more punctuation needed, however, magnificent to watch; Arlene: Very neat, accurate; Len: Like that song … neat, precise, little bit more wild needed. Judges score: 32.
Austin and Erin with a smashing traditional tango to Libertango . I love Erin’s dress and it’s hard to concentrate on Austin - not a good thing. It looked and felt right but I just had a sense of Austin concentrating very hard - and I thought his posture wasn’t as upright as it should be or his head movements as sharp. Proper attitude though, very strong overall. I’m being picky I think, because they’re all so good and I want to be wowed. Craig: Aggressive, passionate, driven, rugbylicious; Arlene: Tingling with torrid passion; Len: Go on my son, moody start, loved it; Bruno: Rampaging beast. Watch out Daniel Craig. Judges score: 38 (10’s from Len and Bruno)
Rachel and Vincent finally find her raunchy side for the rumba. This is her comfort zone, but although I’m sure it was technically good and the song was very sexy and Rachel wouldn’t look out of place in a strip club, why did I not find it amazingly sensual? I only felt the longing from Vincent - Rachel barely looked at him when they were in close hold, her eyes were gazing downwards or sideways but not into his eyes to really give that connection. Len: If you’re in the bottom two, I’ll dance the next Masterclass naked *scrabbles for phone*; Bruno: Needing a bucket of ice, could revive the dead. Fantastic; Craig: Lewd, lustful, almost indecent …I loved it; Arlene: First time this series I had goosebumps. Judges score: 39 Hm, I don’t know - 3 tens? Didn’t I say early on she might be the Emma Bunton?
And here they come, John and Kristina. American Smooth. Two lifts. True Love Ways. You see, the trouble is - they’re charming! This was a huge improvement and much as Rachel was stunning - it’s John’s I’m smiling through. What can you do? Entertainment versus dance competition - it’s both and I’m entertained by dancing that makes me smile. Since I don’t know my toe leads from my toe loops I don’t always agree with the judges. Here we go. LOL - they walked away from the judges. Bruno: Surprisingly appealing; Craig: Lacked energy and drive …your timing is very good…splits moment a wow factor (Kristina, not John!); Arlene: I get what other people see in you, quite endearing. Hollywood feel, work on posture; Len: Brilliant (compared to Terry Wogan) You’re best performance to date. Judges score 25. Finally the judges have cottoned on about sympathy votes. Way too late but there you go.
Tom and Camilla - is it just me or has anyone else noticed they always seem to be first or last up? And do any of the celebs understand how the scoring works - Tom, darlin’ - you were three points clear of Rachel last week! You see, now this is what fully engages me and why he consistently gets my vote. He loves to dance and he can dance - ie. move fluidly in time to the music (another triumph) He feels the music and responds to it and that works for me every time. Camilla is nailing the choreography and music again this year - the arms were fantastic, almost a blur and didn’t miss a beat. Arlene: Saucy, steamy, sexy, sensuous; Len: Rhythym, overall fantastic; Bruno: The Spice Boy has risen to the challenge again; Craig: Loved the choreography /armography, boundless energy (then went on about Tom dancing for himself - he’s not the choreographer Craig! Strangest comment I‘ve ever heard, hope Claudia takes him to task) Len called him a Born-again Plonker! Judges: 35
So there we are, not long to go for another Gate! Based on my values, the leader board would look like this: Tom, Austin, Jodie, Christine, Rachel, Cherie, Lisa, John. I'd really like to not say goodbye to anyone in my top four.