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S13.E96: Week 4

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Lots of good dances this week.  I thought Anita was undermarked, and should have been up there with the 8s (and Georgia too).  But even Peter A wasn't too detestable this week - although are you supposed to bed your knees all the time in that dance?  I liked most of the dances enough not to have a specific favourite.


Rather unprofessional for Darcey to be distracted by Gleb's Gorgeousness; it's OK for me though ;)


The not so good:  Jeremy was the worst, I thought, but I'd pick Kirsty to go, because in her dance she was really just kind of there.  Carol was better than her.  Jay flopped this week, but I felt they over egged it a bit because of the ringer backlash after last week.  Daniel's really not that bad for a bloke in his 50s without a dance background.



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James Jordan talked quite a bit about Jeremy on Twitter and Periscope today.  He said that Jeremy represents what he feels SCD is all about, and I can see his point.  Would Jeremy ever be mistaken for one of the pros?  Hardly.  But every week, he works his ass off in practice, fully commits himself to the dance, gets completely into the routine, and clearly has the time of his life while doing it.  Today's Jive was no exception; in fact, I think it was Jeremy's best dance yet precisely because despite his technical flaws, he's dancing full-out as if he has nothing to lose.  


I agree with James that watching a non-dancer grow and give entertaining routines that might not be technically perfect is much more fun than watching trained dancers do routines that are technically better but boring as hell because they don't have anywhere else to go but down.  James even said -- and I can see where he's coming from on this -- that if he wanted to watch only technically perfect dances, he'd watch professional competitions instead of SCD.  So would I.

Edited by legaleagle53
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Hmmm. Not sure I buy that from James. When the boot was on the other foot and he had ringers or talented dancers he would get very indignant at the 'cult of the duffer'.

He was adamant when dancing with Cherie Lunghi (elegant, older lady with ballet background) - against the juggernaut that was John Sargent - that people should vote for the best dancer not the comedy duffer. He whined that people were being unfair to Denise Van Outen, that she wasn't 'all that experienced' (*cough*), and deserved just as much credit for working hard, as did the non-dancers. He was furious when Gabby Logan (über competitive, former gymnast) was a shock boot in an unfortunate dance off, because it should 'be about the dancing'.

It is great to watch people grow (and I love Jeremy), but is he really 'what the show is all about'? For me it's about a lot of things, one of them being great dancing. Another 'the enthusiastic tryer'. Occasionally it's the utterly hopeless but totally loveable (Judy, I miss you!). Or teamwork and great partnerships.

I don't want to see 15 Jeremies .....or 15 Jays. They each have their role to play and one wouldn't be so satisfying without the other.

Ola had a dud this year and I think James just wants to have his cake and eat it ;-)

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Ola had a dud this year and I think James just wants to have his cake and eat it ;-)

I agree with your assessment of James. I'll add it was rumored Ola really wanted to be paired with Peter, probably the male with the highest expectations this series. I don't know enough about his background to really assess his ringer-ness. 


The weird part of James' non-dancer fixation this time is I don't think there are many true ringers. Peter, Helen, Jay, maybe Kellie (I saw a lot of high expectations for her, but I have no real idea about her background) isn't really a high volume of ringers. I don't feel like anyone in that group has so far looked unbeatable. Peter seems to be getting the biggest push, but he's handicapped by Jannette. (Which reminds me, I would love to hear a James rant on the US version having a star who participated in real ballroom competitions being paired with a pro who dd not. Talk about subverting the point of the show.)


Jeremy definitely goes for it. Anita and Jamelia seem to have the same just go for it spirit. Both are better than Jeremy, but still lack the refinement of other celebrities. Certainly they're more fun to watch than Kirstie. She looks so uncomfortable all the time.


Ainsley had a great week. I thought it was a real improvement over his tango. I'm still liking Georgia but that song this week was aweful.


Thank goodness for live streams because some of my favorite moments this week were with Claudia. Specifically, Jay seemed so sweet and so sincere when he said he was happy to receive a 5 from Craig. I love sincerity. Also, Claudia's non-reaction to Peter's hug was great as was Kevin ripping open is vest in celebration while leaving his shirt underneath completely buttoned. I like Kevin but Kellie is boring me. 

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I'm quite enjoying that James is managing to be as much a part of viewers' Strictly experience as some of the actual on-the-show Pros (if not more of a presence sometimes).


Not surprisingly, James' opinions are as inconsistent and varied as the opinions coming from the rest of us.


Using myself as an example. I would classify Helen George and Sophie EB as the same Strictly "type" - for lack of a better alternative coming to mind I'll call them "fragile ice queens". Both can be acknowledged (generally) to be beautiful. Both come/came across as very nervous. Both appeared quite stiff in their first dance attempts and both have/had a difficult time projecting a TV "personality".


Despite their similarities I loved Helen from the start and went from meh about Sophie to having to fight against actual dislike (due to rabid fans mostly).  The obvious difference is that I knew Helen from Call the Midwife, which I grew to really like her in. I assume that Sophie's rabid and not-so-rabid fans knew her from her pop career. So, not related to how they actually danced - to start with - but likely to influence how I react to the dances.


What's interesting about James' support for Jeremy Vine is that Jeremy is Karen (Hauer) Clifton's partner.  If what he said were consistent (and who can claim to always being consistent) he'd have carried over the Karen/Ola-fighting tabliod story in his choice of who to support no? (OK, so it doesn't actually surprise me because James' Twitter is a persona and he posts based on that persona which is all a bit of social media fun.)


I'll give my thoughts on the show in another post.







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I'm still enjoying this season. Possibly because I don't have to worry about how Pasha is doing (blush). I started watching Strictly because he joined. Now that he's won, my expectation is that he will be stepping back a bit anyway (show mandated if I understand Strictly's history).


So, the only person I didn't want to see on my screen was Iwan - and he's mostly gone except for ITT which I can tolerate.  Kirsty dropped pretty fast in my estimation by not having a Strictly "personality" and not being a good mover. Still, I'm giving her time to improve. Heck, I thought Daniel O'Donnell was a robot the first couple of weeks, but even he grew on me.


Given that I like quite a lot of the contestants this year, I'm noticing I am leaning more to feeling supportive of the underdog ones.


Jay is surprisingly good (at least to me) BUT he seems to have no lack of support so I enjoy his dances when they are on. Except of course this Quick Step due to the compounding effect of his initial error with his inability to recover from it. I'm fully expecting him to be able to reprise this dance in the finals. I WILL be shocked if he doesn't make it, but I think I'd rather have someone else win (who is not Peter Andre).


My top favourite underdogs are Anita, Helen, Katie. These are the ones I hope make it to the final, or close to it.


Anita piqued my interest right from the Launch show. I didn't know who she was, but she is doing fab-u-lously so far. She's got the ability to throw herself into the dance, pick up the attitude and learn a bit of technique as well. I'd like Gleb to step back a bit and let Anita be more front and centre when they aren't dancing, but that's not annoying me (yet).


Glad that movie week is schedule early - for Helen's sake. She found what she needed to bring personality to her dances in the Marilyn inspired dance. I thought she brought performance to her salsa (samba?) again and that she loosened up a LOT more. She was like one of those stick insects during her cha cha (except she looked beautiful). She's still got quite a bit more to learn - especially in Latin - but Aljaz seem to be getting more and more out of her. They are one of my fave pairings.


Katie is just lovely. Thought I knew who she was, but only as a voice. Enjoying her but really wish Anton would calm down. If this is what he always was like I can understand why he got so many duffers. Not much space for Katie to express herself when Anton is in the room. That said, the VW was lovely (and I know nothing) and I am hoping we get to see her do better rather than see Anton do better. I'm of two minds with this pairing. Love her, wary of him.


My other faves underdogs span the gamut of good to good God!


Loving the Jeremy/Karen pairing. She's not so OTT as she's been previously and he is undeniably enjoyable/entertaining to watch. He's what I would have liked Scott Mills to have been. (never would have happened with any Pro however, so not blaming Joanne).


Also loving the Ainsley/Natalie pairing. He's made me smile right from the start and she is getting the best she can from him.


I'd likely be putting Antony/Oti in with this grouping - but of course they, sadly, are gone.


I'm surpisingly meh! about Georgia, Kellie and Carol (although she has Pasha to put her at the front of the line and I actually want her to stay, albeit for selfish reasons). The first two did lovely dances that I enjoyed watching and then forgot about. Carol surprised me with how much character she brought to her Paso so I was happy for her.


Still waffling about Jamelia. Her Charleston was spectacular. I want to like her so I was very happy. But she's got a ways to go to win me back. I was predisposed to liking her because of Tristan but was initially put off by how she came across on the show. However, I liked how she came across on ITT. Her dancing wasn't doing it for me until this Charleston, so I'm holding my breath for her. Hope I don't expire doing that.


Don't like Peter Andre that much, but enjoy his dancing with Janette. Don't know how much more of him I can take. Really didn't like the (failed) hug he foisted on Claudia (but she turned it around and he still looked like an ass. She's got a job to do! Don't interfere with her unless she initiates it!!!)


Was hoping that Kirsty was going to go home, but I thought her second Paso showed improvement AND a better level of performance. Nothing to write home about, but enough for me to give her a second chance. Now. Brendan's another who needs to cede the interview space to his celebrity. She ends up coming across as nasty when she has to fight for air time (and she is an interviewer, so she knows if she's being shut out). One of my least fave pairings.

Edited by Anothermi
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