Strictly Halloween Special

Strictly Come Dancing Week 6 – Halloween Special

Sophie Tolley gives us her views of Strictly Come Dancing week 6. As an avid Strictly fan, Sophie was keen to give us a blog on the highs and the lows of an exciting week on Strictly. Sophie and offer staff members at The London Academy Of Dance are available for private dance lessons throughout the week along with wedding dance lessons.

The Halloween special started with an explosive opening number. It was good to see the celebrities joining in with the group dance but it would have been nicer if we could have seen more of them in spotlight as they were hidden at the back. I do always enjoy the Halloween special as the make-up, costume and special effects are always outstanding. Speaking of which, I loved Tess and Claudia’s outfits –much better than what their stylists usually dress them in! The judges were dressed as the Adam’s family which was very entertaining.

First up were Katie and Anton with a Paso Doble to Phantom of the Opera. The song was very dramatic which helped with the illusion that the dance was also but in fact I thought it lacked the necessary passion which is required of the Paso. There was good characterisation but there were a couple of mistakes. Bruno said he felt her “feet were insecure” but Darcy was more positive saying “She looked the part” and that she was “working in the right direction”. She received 21 points overall which was fair except Craig’s 4 which was harsh.

Next up were Kirsty and Brendon with the Charleston (my favourite dance). Last week she scored 29 and had really improved. The start was promising with a tricky lift but unfortunately the next lift epically failed as she couldn’t get the correct hand grip. She attempted the swivel but it wasn’t maintained throughout and much more energy was needed. For me there were too many attempted tricks and not enough Charleston content but of course that’s Brendon’s fault not Kirsty’s. Darcy said it was “impressive how you through yourself into the lifts” and Len said she “coped very well”. However, she only ended up with 17 points, her lowest score to date.

Then came Jeremy and Karen with a Salsa to Thriller. He had good characterisation and Darcy agreed with me saying his “characterisation was spectacular” but his hips were incredibly stiff (perhaps taking the role of a zombie too literally!) and I felt more salsa content was needed. The actual Thriller moves were danced with conviction, which was entertaining. For the last 4 weeks Craig has given him a 3 but Jeremy jumped in delight as Craig finally pushed this to 4 points this week and that gave him an overall score of 22.

Anita and Gleb were next dancing the Waltz. Her costume was fabulous as she mimicked Maleficent. She received 32 last week for her excellent Tango. Overall the choreography was fabulous with quite a contemporary feel. It was a little stop-start in places which isn’t reminiscent of the Waltz. Bruno said she “immersed herself in the character” but Craig thought she needed to be “much more lyrical” which resulted in a 6 – very harsh I thought, however she received a respectable 29 overall.

Next up were Jamelia and Tristen. Up to now Jamelia has had a bit of a rocky ride having been in the dance off on more than one occasion and the only dance I’ve really enjoyed was her cheeky Charleston. This week she was dancing the jive. There were some timing issues and she wasn’t using her free arm effectively. She also tired towards the end and it’s so important to maintain energy throughout especially in the Jive. The judges said she did have energy but I totally disagreed with that comment. Len said it looked “under rehearsed” which I did agree with. She scored 26 points.

Then came Jay and Aliona. I must admit I do have a major soft spot for Jay I think he’s an amazing dancer and it’s clear he’s had previous training. This was the first time he had assisted with lifts and he did it very well with excellent control. He had lovely arm placement and was very elegant. Craig said he “loved his lines and he pointed his feet beautifully.” The judges felt he needed more characterisation throughout to be an all rounded dancer. I think he’s going to have a challenge to beat THAT jive. 34 was his score (1 more than last week).

Kellie and Kevin were dancing the Paso Doble also. Last week they were joint top of the leader board with 35 points for their Jive. I adore Kellie, I think she’s brilliant and always gives 110%. Tonight was no different as she had bundles of energy, putting on a great show. Darcy said she was “fuelled with energy” whilst Craig called her a “wonderful dancer”. They did comment that because she was so full on she slightly lacked finesse and the Latin line that they were after. She received four 7’s giving her a score of 28 which I actually disagreed with – I would have given her an 8.

Next up was Carol and Pasha dancing the Rumba. To be fair to Carol I think Pasha had chosen the wrong concept completely as they were dancing as Frankenstein and his bride but how can Frankenstein demonstrate smooth hip action??? There was a complete lack of flow and limited hip action. Darcy was quite right in saying “this isn’t your dance”. Len was mortified that she used a heel lead which is completely against Latin rules as it needs to be ball flat. She received a measly 13 points which I believe is the lowest score in the competition so far.

Georgia and Giovanni were dancing the Tango and received a standing ovation. There was very good story telling, good top line, it was sharp and staccato in the right places. Len said she was “Queen of Halloween”. There was loads of content which was really impressive how she coped with it very well. She received 35 points which was well deserved and placed her at the top of the leader board.

Then came Peter and Janette. Last week I was disappointed with their Rumba as there was literally no content. This week they were dancing the Foxtrot. He was very strong both in and out of hold. Darcy described him as “such a natural performer” but Bruno rightly said that he has to “become a new character…not the same thing every week”. He received 28 points – not his best.

Finally we had Helen and Aljaž who last week was joint top of the leader board with Kellie and Kevin. Up to now Kellie and Helen have been neck and neck. This week they danced the Samba. The choreography was great and they maintained great characterisation throughout – I really believed they were Mummies. The judges said that she had “delivered again”. She received 34 points which placed her second on the leader board.
Sunday night presented us with the results show. It opened with an outstanding dance by the professionals. The concept was fabulous – it was based on a chess board and each dancer was one of the chess pieces. The partner work and mirror imaging was fantastic.

Jamelia and Kirsty ended up in the dance off. I felt quite sorry for Jamelia because she was there yet again and this week she didn’t deserve it. Both improved dramatically in their final dance but in the end the vote was unanimous and Jamelia was saved by the judges, which meant we had to say goodbye to Kirsty and Brendon.

The question is who’s voting for Carol?

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