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The celebs I will particularly hate this year based pm their VT on the launch show

4. Joe - didn’t hate him as much as expected but feel he isn’t taking this seriously.  I may be wrong.

3. Seann - says not trying to be funny, which is lucky because he isn’t.

2, Lee - just really annoying.

1, Ashley - wow.  I thought Lee was going to be this year’s bete noire and then she came on in all her overconfident glory.  She came across as a really awful person, IMO.  She can’t have realised, surely?  Please let her go out really early, ideally first.

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I'm also not thrilled about these new styles that the pros have not mastered. We've seen pros like Janette struggle with choreographing traditional ballroom and it is not fair to have both the pro and the celebrity try to learn a dance they are not familiar with. It is painful to watch them on Dancing with the Stars flailing about because they think that is what Contemporary dance is supposed to look like. I'm dreading Hip Hop/Street. The good thing is that they get to choose which one they'll do.

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not a bad start.  Dr Ranj and Joe Sugg were surprisingly good, as was Graeme.  Faye, Ashley, Stacey and Lee also very good.  Charles and Danny pretty strong too.  Vick I felt was under marked and looked really disappointed in the crowd after the other performances.  Unless she does better next week she could be at risk of the first boot.  Susannah was poor but a 1 from Craig seemed a bit harsh.

Edited by Occasional Hope
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Nice dancing, for the most part, but that Samba from Anton and Susannah was painful to watch even by Anton Latin standards. I know he's actually better at dancing Latin than that and has to dial it WAY back to match her skill level lest he make it look as though the routine is all about HIS dancing, but trying to make it a comedy routine somehow only compounds the atrocity.  I love Anton to death, but that 1 from Craig was deserved.

Edited by legaleagle53
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The overall standard is pretty high this year.

My rankings for ep 2:

GREAT

1. Joe - really enjoyed that performance, and he showed signs of an engaging personality too.  If he wins this, it isn't going to be because of his youtube followers.  BUT - was doing two fast dances in a row a tactical error?  We don't know if he can replicate this form in ballroom or a sensuous dance like the rumba.  Also, if this Charleston had been delayed a few weeks, I reckon he could have got a significantly higher score for it.  But right now, he's my favourite.

2. Faye - dramatic, sexy and elegant.  A real contender for the title.

3. Danny - excellent performance.

4. Vick - lovely graceful balletic performance, perhaps now reaping the fruits of her earlier training.  Could be at risk of B2 due to lack of fanbase, but I think tonight will have won her enough votes to escape.

 

MID-PACK/GOOD

5. Ashley - undoubtedly a very competent dancer, but it was a bit cabaret showgirl for me.  Is in danger if she ever drops to the bottom half of the scoreboard, imo.

6. Dr Ranj - fun, fun, fun, making up for  technical shortcomings.  Possibly same tactical error as Joe.

7. Stacey - good, confident performer.  Out of sync in places but I felt undermarked.  Could develop into a contender.

=8. Kate - not bad.

=8. Lee - pretty decent jive, but still not warming to the personality.

 

NOT SO HOT

10. Lauren - a bit limp, especially compared to the week's other Charleston.  Possible B2.

11. Charles - not too bad, but rather heavy footed.  Showed some charm in his performance.

12. Susannah - much better than last week, but still not up to much.  May survive thanks to Anton's fanbase and a sympathy vote.

13. Graeme - walky and hunched over, but delightful personality will carry him through.

14. Seann - he tried.  Another B2 candidate.

15. Katie - stiff and ploddy.  B2 and possible boot?

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8 hours ago, Occasional Hope said:

5. Ashley - undoubtedly a very competent dancer, but it was a bit cabaret showgirl for me.  Is in danger if she ever drops to the bottom half of the scoreboard, imo.

I disagree. I thought Ashley's Cha-Cha was one of the best I've ever seen on any version of Strictly/DWTS.  I mean, Pasha got THAT level of hip action from her?  I know people are screaming that she's a pro-level ringer, and that may well work against her down the line, but I have to give credit where credit was due -- I'm surprised it didn't get at least one 10 from the judges, as I think it certainly would have on DWTS!

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2 hours ago, Occasional Hope said:

I think it's too early in the season for 10s. 

Yeah, watching a person who got tens in week 2 win is boring. Even if a dance deserves a 10 (and I don't think this did)*, they wouldn't give a ten if they want the dancer to be someone to root for. 

I'm rooting for Kate and Lauren at the moment. I like a bit of a dark horse and I think they have room for improvement without being completely crap. 

*For a dance to get a ten it can't just be technically good, it has to be entertaining and memorable to me. I thought this was a pretty standard cha cha.

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3 hours ago, Occasional Hope said:

What a very gracious exit.  The judges can’t have had to think much about that decision.

Yeah, I had to give it to Katie when she agreed that Lee deserved to stay over her.  The poor woman gave it her all, but she knew that she just didn't have it in her to be the star pupil that Anton needed her to be.  I felt especially bad for her when she said that she felt that she had let Anton down.

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Incidentally, someone had apparently started a rumor after Susannah's elimination that Anton was leaving the show.  Anton was very quick to deny it -- in fact, he most emphatically said that "DuBekxit" wasn't happening!

Edited by legaleagle53
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Movie week: my rankings

 

GREAT

1. Ashley - spectacular.  That could have been a pro dance on Sunday night.  My only criticism is that she was a bit too smily..

2. Faye - excellent.

3. Danny - dramatic, very good, undermarked.

 

GOOD

4. Charles - beautifully acted and well danced.

5. Vick - liked it.   Worried that her early performance and lack of fanbase coming in could just put her in this week's bottom two, although not that likely.

6. Lauren - another good dance. 

 

MID RANGE

7. Dr Ranj - light and charming, makes up for flawed technique.

8. Graeme - seemed a bit slow for a Charleston but very entertaining.

9. Joe - as expected, a bit more tentative in ballroom than he was with the fast dances, but not at all bad.

 

NOT SO HOT

10. Kate - overmarked, felt she was rather awkward, not to mention the unfortunate stumble.

11. Stacey - competent enough dancing but I felt the quirky costumes were an attempt to hide how utterly boring the actual dance was.

12. Katie - much improved from last two weeks, but still not a natural mover.  But nice to see her looking happy and confident.

13. Seann - the judges may have liked it, but I fund his demeanour laughable, and not in a good way.  Lucky they told us it was the Matrix, because otherwise I would have said he was playing the older Jedi in that really bad Star Wars prequel.

14. Lee.  He didn't deserve to be in the danceoff last time.  This week, he really really does.  Very awkward and out of time.  

 

I predict a danceoff of Lee versus Lauren, Katie or Vick, Lee to go home.

 

Bruno seems to be more OTT than ever.  Shirley spent half the time he was talking literally cowering in her chair.

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Katie was the right one to go this week.

Ashley and Faye continue to be a cut above the rest.

No real surprises this week, everyone performing more or less at their usual standard.

Am I a horrible person for wanting Seann and Katya to dance to 'I Want Your Kiss'?

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I feel a bit as if I.m talking to myself here, anyway:

No total disasters this week.  It’s hard to predict a bottom two with Charles who would have been an unhesitatingly choice seemingly saved by high judge scores.

THE EXCELLENT AND IT WOULD BE A TRAVESTY IF THEY LEFT

AShley, Stacey, Faye, Danny

THE GOOD AND I SOULD BE SAD TO THEM GO

Ranj, Graeme, Seann (dance wise, not warming to the personality, ignoring the kiss),Joe

NOT SO GOOD BUT NOT AWFUL

Lauren - looked a bit ungainly, not sure about contemporary as a genre but not her fault

Kate

NOT FOR ME TONIGHT

 Vick, who was boring and is my prediction for the boot

Charles - well danced but I hated the choreography and music and suspect a lot of the audiences will too.  He was VERY LUCKY to get such good judges scores.

I enjoyed Alfono’s Bruno impersonation, but otherwise he was pretty useless.

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I want Seann to go. It's too awkward and he's not worth the trouble. I also hated the guitar gimmick. Vick wasn't great, but I think the real difference in Seann and Vick is the skill of their partner.

Stacey is becoming a typical Kevin partner. She's good, but the last two weeks she's been a touch over-scored. Kevin's reaction to the scores last week, after years and years of getting good scores on the show, was obnoxious. 

I really liked Danny. Good for Amy. Charles danced well, but I hate Strictly going further away from ballroom.

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1 hour ago, Dots And Stripes said:

I hate Strictly going further away from ballroom.

That's pretty much what James Jordan said on Twitter:  "Why do we have to turn into Dancing with the Stars?  We're not Americans!"

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I loved Stacey's outfit, it was glorious. 

Danny is probably my favourite at the moment. I like Kate too, and I love watching Graeme (okay Oti, but still). 

A lot of the dances this week were quite forgettable. Hopefully next week will be more fun with it being halloween. 

11 hours ago, Dots And Stripes said:

I hate Strictly going further away from ballroom.

I totally agree. The pros already add elements of contemporary and jazz to their regular routines, why do we need a seperate routine specifically? We already have movie week and musicals week to show off more theatrical dancing. It's completely superfluous. 

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9 hours ago, doesntworkonwood said:

 

I totally agree. The pros already add elements of contemporary and jazz to their regular routines, why do we need a seperate routine specifically? We already have movie week and musicals week to show off more theatrical dancing. It's completely superfluous. 

It’s frustrating for me because I live in the US and I have given up on out version. The show still pretends to judge the Dancing, but so much of the comments and the reaction are based on the overall production. There are so many props and extra dancers that it doesn’t matter what the actual dancing looks like. Strictly has done a better job of keeping props limited to the start of the dance and still having the dancing matter. 

Charles is a great example bugs me about the “couples choice” thing. He’s been bottom 2 for 2 weeks. Now he gets to pick a style completely unrelated to anything else on the show and is near the top of the leaderboard. It’s completely out of left field and it creates the illusion of growth. It will also probably play well for Jeannette, who once again struggled to teach her partner ballroom. Ashley will do absurdly well too considering she was basically a backup dancer for the PCD.

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Poor Vick.  I really felt she had potential but for some reason she never managed to fulfil it.  I think the specific problem this week was (as well as Charles quite likely being kept out of the danceoff by artificially high scores) that the routine was forgettable, but more generally a lack of big fanbase coming in, a new pro, and not being great all did for her.

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1 hour ago, Occasional Hope said:

Poor Vick.  I really felt she had potential but for some reason she never managed to fulfil it.  I think the specific problem this week was (as well as Charles quite likely being kept out of the danceoff by artificially high scores) that the routine was forgettable, but more generally a lack of big fanbase coming in, a new pro, and not being great all did for her.

Yeah, even James Jordan was surprised -- and a little disappointed -- that she was eliminated.  He said that the judges had made the right call, but he really felt that Vick had a lot more potential and she just never got a chance to develop it. Of course, it didn't help that she had one of the worst pros ever for her partner!

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Per Wikipedia, the lowest scoring couple has gone home every week so far this series. That strikes me as unusual, in the past the worst dancer has frequently escaped the bottom 2 because of their popularity. I blame Graziano for not putting together a better cha cha for Vick. She should have been able to out score Seann and a few others this week.

1 hour ago, legaleagle53 said:

Yeah, even James Jordan was surprised -- and a little disappointed -- that she was eliminated.  He said that the judges had made the right call, but he really felt that Vick had a lot more potential and she just never got a chance to develop it. Of course, it didn't help that she had one of the worst pros ever for her partner!

James and Ola have been all over Graziano for dancing off time. I know James also pointed out yesterday how strange it is to have Graziano with a celebrity while Neil Jones is just there as an extra. I assume they were going for eye candy with Graziano, but I don't think he's worked out.

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7 minutes ago, Dots And Stripes said:

Per Wikipedia, the lowest scoring couple has gone home every week so far this series. That strikes me as unusual, in the past the worst dancer has frequently escaped the bottom 2 because of their popularity. I blame Graziano for not putting together a better cha cha for Vick. She should have been able to out score Seann and a few others this week.

James and Ola have been all over Graziano for dancing off time. I know James also pointed out yesterday how strange it is to have Graziano with a celebrity while Neil Jones is just there as an extra. I assume they were going for eye candy with Graziano, but I don't think he's worked out.

If Graziano is their idea of "eye candy," I'm glad I'm a diabetic!

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Yeah. Vick is a much better dancer than Sean(n) and tbh I thought she did better in the dance off. The biggest problem with her dance was the choreography and not the dancing itself. It's a real shame that they let her go.

The judging has been a bit off this year too. They're giving pretty messy routines really high scores, and decent routines lower scores without really mentioning why. According to Vick's show this morning there might be a bit of producer meddling unfortunately. 

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Seann and Katya leaving is for the best. Katya's choreography was cool this week, but Seann's dancing wasn't worth the circus. 

Lot's of struggling this week. I think Kate had the worst dance. I can't tell what the doctor did, I was so distracted by that costume that took over everything. 

The ringers are clearly in a league of their own. I was a little underwhelmed by the jazz, if I'm being honest. I want to like Faye better because I love Gio. Below them seems to be Kevin's partner (Stacy?) and Joe. I wish I could get more on board with them but neither is bringing much personality to the dances. I expect more personality for Joe, maybe its the ballroom dances that are making him feel flat. Danny might be the best combination of ability and performance for me.

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I felt sorry for Graeme and Oti. It's hard to be a zombie and do the cha cha at the same time, I wish they were given a better song. 

Glad to see the back of Sean(n) and Katya. They should have gone last week, but hey. 

I didn't think that Ashley's charlston was that great (and the singing was pretty offensive to my ears) but it's halloween week so I should have expected over inflated scores. 

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Graeme and Dr Ranj are probably the worst dancers still in, but they both have engaging personalities so I'll be sorry when the inevitable occurs.  I was surprised Charles escaped the B2 this week, especially with that awful wig.  Stacey OTOH looked better in the wig than she does au naturel.

I didn't particularly like Faye's dance but she performed it well.  Ashley was excellent imo, but I hated the costuming.

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15 hours ago, doesntworkonwood said:

I thought the dances were quite boring this week, no one really stood out. 

Oh, I don't know.  My favorites were Graeme's Waltz and Ashley's Foxtrot.  I thought Graeme was elegant and graceful, and if he made any mistakes in his footwork or missed any heel leads, I didn't spot them.  And Stacey's Foxtrot was exactly the kind of old-school Hollywood style dancing I love to see.  I'd be shocked if she didn't get at least one 10 for it.

Edited by legaleagle53
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4 hours ago, Occasional Hope said:

Dr Ranj was so lovely, I’m sad to see him go, but he was one of the poorest dancers left.

Yeah, I knew he wouldn't win, but I had hoped to see him stick around just a little longer.  He always showed such joy in his dancing, and I could tell that he was having a LOT of fun.

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5 hours ago, legaleagle53 said:

Oh, I don't know.  My favorites were Graeme's Waltz and Stacey's Foxtrot.  I thought Graeme was elegant and graceful, and if he made any mistakes in his footwork or missed any heel leads, I didn't spot them.  And Stacey's Foxtrot was exactly the kind of old-school Hollywood style dancing I love to see.  I'd be shocked if she didn't get at least one 10 for it.

Stacey had "street and commercial." Do you mean Ashley? She received 3 10's. I'm slightly bitter that Shirley gave that a 10 but not Faye considering Ashley is very close to Mark. The other judges scored them identically. I know Ashley judged a show over in the UK, but I can't adjust to seeing her a star.

Speaking of "street and commercial," did Strictly explain what that style is? I assume it's something related to hip hop? Is this something British audiences would understand because I am an American and I am completely lost. I thought Stacey's dance was a mess and did not deserve the 9's she and Kevin got.

I happy that we finally broke the pattern of having the lowest scorer leave when Danny was at the bottom of the leader board. His dance was strange. I don't know that I've ever seen someone lose their timing that badly in hold while seeming to have it together the rest of the time. I like him. I'm still missing some sort of electric performer this series.

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8 minutes ago, Dots And Stripes said:

Stacey had "street and commercial." Do you mean Ashley? She received 3 10's. I'm slightly bitter that Shirley gave that a 10 but not Faye considering Ashley is very close to Mark. The other judges scored them identically. I know Ashley judged a show over in the UK, but I can't adjust to seeing her a star.

Speaking of "street and commercial," did Strictly explain what that style is? I assume it's something related to hip hop? Is this something British audiences would understand because I am an American and I am completely lost. I thought Stacey's dance was a mess and did not deserve the 9's she and Kevin got.

I happy that we finally broke the pattern of having the lowest scorer leave when Danny was at the bottom of the leader board. His dance was strange. I don't know that I've ever seen someone lose their timing that badly in hold while seeming to have it together the rest of the time. I like him. I'm still missing some sort of electric performer this series.

Yes, I meant Ashley.  I corrected my original post.  Thank you.

I saw "street and commercial" as a kind of fusion of Jazz, Broadway, and Showdance.  And I really enjoyed the routine.  I know some people feel that Kevin is overrated as a pro, but his choreography and expression cemented for me why he's always been a favorite of mine and why he can do no wrong in my eyes.  Strictly is lucky to have him.  I just wonder what DWTS would make of him if we ever persuaded him to come over here (which could happen since he and Karen have apparently split, as I just found out today!).

And James Jordan summed it up perfectly yesterday on Twitter regarding Danny's disaster of a Quickstep (he even channeled a bit of Craig/Len while doing so): "You did just fine in the beginning -- AND THEN YOU GOT INTO HOLD!"

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On 11/3/2018 at 5:29 PM, One4Sorrow2TooBad said:

Giving Ashley props :).   Enjoyed Faye's Tango, but what was the point in using the cube ? Nice song choice though.

I liked this dance, but I had to agree with Craig about the Cube.  I had ideas in my head about how the cube would affect/relate to their dance, but in the end it was just there as a prop.  I saw a couple of moves that might have informed the reason for it's existence (Faye kinda rushing back to it for... some reason? Maybe?) But it turned out to just be a thing they thought looked cool.

Aside from that, I'm really enjoying Giovanni this year.

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4 hours ago, Dots And Stripes said:

Speaking of "street and commercial," did Strictly explain what that style is? I assume it's something related to hip hop? Is this something British audiences would understand because I am an American and I am completely lost.

The tiny blurb they put up on the Strictly website blog back in September doesn't tell us much:
 

Quote

 

Contemporary - takes inspiration from Ballet, lyrical and modern dance

Street/Commercial - covers all styles of urban dance as well as allowing couples to go in a more pop, commercial direction

Theatre/Jazz - very much the style of musical theatre, including elements of tap, soft shoe, burlesque and Jazz

 

A poster on a British forum (who's got connections to a lot of dancers in the British Ballroom world and therefor the Strictly world) hunted down a "definition" of Street/Commercial which appears to mesh with what we've seen of that genre to date:

Quote

commercial refers to dancing done in concerts, live shows, music videos, movies, industrials, and, obviously, commercials. There are many different styles of dance that can be worked into the commercial category, such as hip hop, jazz, locking, popping, breakdancing, krumping, and more. Sometimes, you'll find ballet and ballroom thrown into the mix, although "street dance" is more common. Generally speaking, commercial dance is super sexy and super entertaining.

I'd say that the Great British Public knows about as much about all these styles as you do - judging from the confused posts I read on a Brit forum.

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20 hours ago, Anothermi said:

I'd say that the Great British Public knows about as much about all these styles as you do - judging from the confused posts I read on a Brit forum.

Thanks so much! Your explanation was helpful. It sounds like a pop star's version of hip hop. Such a strange choice of styles. I would think theatre/jazz would have been more up Kevin's alley.

On 11/4/2018 at 8:28 PM, legaleagle53 said:

Yes, I meant Ashley.  I corrected my original post.  Thank you.

I saw "street and commercial" as a kind of fusion of Jazz, Broadway, and Showdance.  And I really enjoyed the routine.  I know some people feel that Kevin is overrated as a pro, but his choreography and expression cemented for me why he's always been a favorite of mine and why he can do no wrong in my eyes.  Strictly is lucky to have him.  I just wonder what DWTS would make of him if we ever persuaded him to come over here (which could happen since he and Karen have apparently split, as I just found out today!).

And James Jordan summed it up perfectly yesterday on Twitter regarding Danny's disaster of a Quickstep (he even channeled a bit of Craig/Len while doing so): "You did just fine in the beginning -- AND THEN YOU GOT INTO HOLD!"

But there's a theatre/jazz option! I think Kevin (and likely an outside choreographer) kind of went the theatre route borrowing some elements of hip hop. IMO, she didn't pull of hip hop. I don't see Kevin from Grimbsy making the jump to the U.S. He'd be a fool to try it. The Strictly producers love him and he is one of the more well known pros. I would see less of him if he came here because Strictly>DWTS at this point. 

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This week I thought Graeme was very much drunk uncle at the wedding, but Joe was my least favourite.  I predict that the danceoff will be Graeme versus Danny (I thought Danny was actually really good, but bad comments, some dodgy press during the week and early placement will all affect his vote), with Graeme reaching the end of the road.

Ashley's dance was stunning, but it didn't really feel like it should be on this show.

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1 hour ago, Occasional Hope said:

This week I thought Graeme was very much drunk uncle at the wedding, but Joe was my least favourite.  I predict that the danceoff will be Graeme versus Danny (I thought Danny was actually really good, but bad comments, some dodgy press during the week and early placement will all affect his vote), with Graeme reaching the end of the road.

Ashley's dance was stunning, but it didn't really feel like it should be on this show.

I disagree about Graeme.  Unlike Grocery Store Joe on DWTS (who on his best day would be the "drunk uncle"), Graeme actually CAN dance and is still having a ton of fun, and I thought he did a great job with the Salsa.  I don't expect him to win, but I would love to see him make the semi-finals at least.

Edited by legaleagle53
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I loved Graeme's Salsa. He's not the best dancer in the world, but he's willing to take the mick out of himself and I appreciate that. It gets really boring if all of the dances are quite 'serious'. 

I thought Joes samba was weird

I suspect Charles and Danny to be in the bottom two. The public just doesn't like Charles (and neither do I). 

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