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Strictly Come Dancing 2019, Week 9 thoughts

Published November 18, 2019

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Blackpool! That’s all we need to say about that. In other news, at this point, all the dancers left are really good and have earned their spot on the big ballroom floor, so I was looking forward to this show being of really high dance quality… and I wasn’t disappointed!


Great opening number with all the professionals, celebrities, and the bonus Blackpool dancers. It was quite weird to see our contestants dancing with each other, ie. at one point I spotted Karim and Alex having a boogie. Very odd.

At this point they’re known as the Magnificent Seven which is a great nickname for them, but only lasts one week. Boo.

Chris and Karen go first. There was a bit of faffing around at the beginning and although you could see the beginnings of hip movement, it was definitely lacking. However, it was a great party dance, wonderful mood-setter to open the show with. Chris does really well at the stuff that isn’t salsa, leading the other dancers. Felt like it was slightly overmarked but hard to complain such a feel-good start.

Anton and Emma saw the former in his absolute element of course, but I found the dance pretty boring. Emma was great, very strong in the lifts and you could tell she was loving it. She got quite emotional at the end, and then probably so did Anton with his first ever tens!! That’s an incredible statistic.

Alex and Neil’s Paso Doble was AMAZING. Loved the version of the song by the band, and what an incredible performance by Alex. All that confidence she’s gathered over the past few weeks has led her to this stage. She loved being with a full team of dancers and the song spurred her on to take over the world.

Kelvin showed off his muscles once again, what the hell were those flying pushups? Jives are always really good but this one was special. Oti choreographed a great dance, and Kelvin brought great character. Bruno’s take: “Professional standard.” That’s all there is to say, really.

Saffron and AJ did a very good job, it was hugely quick, that quickstep. But I just didn’t like it and can’t explain why. I didn’t like the dress too much. And I guess the choreography was just too quick or too hard? I don’t think AJ did her any favours really. And it might seem hardcore to need to take five minute naps during training because you’re working so hard but actually it just makes me think you’re overdoing it and need to chill.

There’s no denying the sentiment behind Michelle and Gio’s couple’s choice to Vogue. The intro video was moving and inspiring and it felt like a great confluence of things - Michelle, the song, the costumes, the location. I just think as a dance, it wasn’t complicated enough for this stage in the competition. Just a lot of walking and armography. Great crowd-pleaser and Gio was in his element, but is it enough?

Closing the show, Karim and Amy lit up the floor with their Charleston. It was clear this was going to be his dance because it requires energy by the bucketload. It wasn’t too silly like some Charlestons are but had all the right elements to it. He’ll be glad to have got all the steps right too. In all honesty, he seemed better than Amy in places.


Saffron and Michelle ended up in the dance off, which at first feels like a surprise but from my comments above actually makes sense. Unfortunately, it was Michelle’s time to go, which is a real shame for her to go on this dance. But she had a great run and gave us some iconic moments.

The magnificent seven becomes the startling six and on we go!

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