Saturday, 1 November 2014

Fright Night V

Get ready to hide behind the sofa, it's the FIFTH Strictly Halloween Special, mwaaahahahaha! We usually open these posts by being rather grumpy, and by the end we're epically grumpy (Halloween is not our favourite night of the year for SCD) - but this year I, at least, am going into it with an open mind. Just so long as there aren't more props than actual dance steps...

I'm grumpy.

Halloween Dress Watch: Tess looks like that person who thinks wearing a black top counts as a Halloween outfit...Zoe looks properly spangly and on-the-money. Speaking of Zoe, very glad to have her on board, and may the little Winkleman get well soon. I'm also still loving the judges dancing on - so there!

I do not like the judges dancing on. In the words of one of my colleagues over a watermelon mojito last week: "it puts me in a bad mood for the rest of the whole show."

Opening number? Scooby Doo acting abounds as ever - and how does every pro Halloween number just look like Rocky Horror these days?!

Sunetra and Brendan

Literal choreography alert! Running to...running from....praying! The moving around of the furniture did manage to cover up that this wasn't really Sunetra's best dance. The jive is really hard and she seems more of a ballroom girl, Brendan's kicks just looked so much sharper than hers. Good to see that they keep the original Northern Soul music though. I hope being in the death slot doesn't mean an exit in this week of all weeks!

First things first, was this bed formerly the table from last year's boardroom tango? Or possibly one of the beds from the NHS segment of the 2012 Olympic Opening Ceremony? For I thought I had not seen bedography before, but then I had forgotten about Danny Boyle's brain. Sunetra's definitely a ballroom girl. She manages the top half of latin relatively well, but below the swarovski-encrusted belt, it's all a little flollopy. I do like her - and Brendan, despite his facial get up of a ghostly version of Lorne, the karaoke demon from Angel - but sadly this week not enough to give her one of my precious votes. Loved the song though.

Alison and Aljaz

Aljaz wins the guyliner wars for the second year in a row, he's also one of the few male pros not buried under 9 tonnes of makeup. I think this might actually have been Alison's best ballroom - the American Smooth doesn't need a lot in hold and when they actually were in hold it did seem a little better. But my word, the facial expressions! Alison looked like she was on a lot of medication - can we all have some please?

Well. I'm not quite what to say because this was incredibly surreal. all. She came in like a wrecking ball (as proclaimed by a friend of mine, who incidentally also once peed next to Brendan Cole - true story) and proceeded to waft her way around the floor like linen sheets in a tumble-dryer. And yet, I loved it. I smiled from beginning to end. Alison can dance, and I actually think this week she was under-marked. 

Simon and Kristina

EPIC paso song - Poison is camp, over the top and creepy. I'd take it in a normal week, let alone Halloween week. Also, he's dressed as the Riddler in green eye shadow for some reason. This was pretty good, very strong performance from Simon, he's given 100% yet again. Kristina looks amazing in the catsuit, but think I would have preferred a full paso skirt.

Can we all just take a moment to consider the point that Simon is leading Kristina around the floor? I'm not seeing that from any other male celebs this year - no, *dodges bullets*, not even The Untouchable Mr Wood (is that the porn version of The Unsinkable Molly Brown?). I thought this was great - his lines could have been better but there was a musicality in his movement that I'm not seeing in all other contestants this year. He totes got some votes. 

Steve and Ola

AMAZING costumes, I think they might be my favourites of the night. My hopes were really, really high for this number and I was sad that it didn't turn out quite right. After his energetic quickstep I thought this was going to be epic, but I guess it just wasn't the right dance for him. Hopefully they've picked up enough fans along the way to get through this week.

In a dark, dark town, there was a dark, dark street; and in the dark, dark street there was a dark, dark studio; and in the dark, dark studio there were two skeletons dancing a somewhat mediocre charleston. This could have been very good but all mistakes were unfortunately magnified by the studio lights reflecting off dem dry bones. 

Pixie and Trent

I'm genuinely a bit scared of Trent, most weeks, not just Halloween. Although that was overshadowed by Pixie's hair, as was the audience, the studio and the sun. This was suitably bonkers, I rather enjoyed it actually. The fact that they were able to put little electric details in the routine alongside the tango just shows how far ahead of everyone Pixie is (dirty ringa klaxon!). It was pure bombast, but great fun.

So this is what it would be like if the Lannisters went to hell and took control of the underworld. And there was a musical version of that. It was packed full of tango - and exquisitely executed, but I couldn't keep my eyes off Pixie's hair - in itself, the size of a small nation. Trent sort of just looked like a waxwork version of himself. 

Judy and Anton

Well, we just knew this would be a camp as knickers, didn't we? I did worry that Judy couldn't even take off her coat without looking clumsy, but what a marvellous outfit. Anton on the other hand has just come in his own clothes. The stiffness returned, I loved how she grimaced every time they went into a lift. The steps were better, but she's still behind everyone...apart from Scott.

Judy looking as classy and as lovely as ever. But yeah, in the words of a schoolgirl-witch-doppelganger-vampire: bored now. 

Jake and Janette

I really loved this, they were wearing Halloween outfits but that dance could have come from any week. He struggled a bit with the Spanish line at first, but then really got into the grrr of it all. I seemed to be in the minority on Twitter about that, but I really enjoyed Janette's choreography.

Now I'm not saying it was bad. It wasn't. It was good. But it's not automatically good just because it's Jake. I'm glad the judges brought up issues with it because he's kind of been getting a free ride. His line was more Spennymoor than Spanish, and he's got a very straight upright kind of posture in every dance he does. He isn't dancing from his middle - something that I think Simon, for example, is doing - he's very arm-and-leg. I'm actually feeling a bit mean whilst writing this (seriously - I do have a heart) because he is, quite honestly, very, very good. But that doesn't explain why it looked like a six year old had drawn on him with a 2b pencil. (I've had a really bad week...)

Caroline and Pasha

These two seemed to get the bargain bin costumes for Halloween this year, plus the samba is the worst dance to be given for Halloween. Felt quite sorry for the two of them with this one, it was a perfectly perfunctory samba and performed well, but nothing to write home about amongst all the madness.

Besides a few rolls, I saw very little samba in this routine. The first few steps looked like poorly executed cha cha, American Rhythm style, and many of the other steps seemed more like salsa. Ish. That's no slight on Caroline though, as she's technically great; it's also not really a slight on Pasha because - again - that was an appalling choice of music for that dance. As for the aforementioned rolls though, I wonder if we should call them samba barms in the north. Just a thought.

Scott and Joanne

Joanne looks amazing as Morticia, much less jazz-hands than usual. I actually quite liked this, I can't believe I'm saying this but it was actually quite charming. There was foxtrot content in there, even with the face pulling, and he managed to do it without falling over. Despite the gimmicks, they had put some work into the dancing - I think this could save him for another week.

This does not deserve my words. Fine, if you find it entertaining. (Do you? Do you really? I worry for you.) But Darcey, praising the performance and marking as she did narks me to next September. If the show were called Strictly Come Acting, her comments would actually be relevant. 

Mark and Karen

Loving Karen's post-night-out-on-the-lash look, but not as much as I loved this jive! So cute and bouncy, lots of content, everything you'd want from a jive. Has this made Mark suddenly a real player this series? He's been quietly plugging away whilst still keeping his excitable-puppy style. He can even over shadow Karen looking like she's been pulled out of a ditch.

THIS IS MORE LIKE IT. This was my favourite dance of the evening. These are the reasons: Mark started out OK, but not amazing, hence: journey -we may not say it but we do still like it. It was also relatively gimmick free. And the dancing was spot on. They were completely in sync and his timing was excellent. Mark is the male Abbey Clancy. I am now saying this at least once a week. And the more I say it, the more I believe it. 

Frankie and Kevin

Frankie and Kevin look marvellous, but this is a terrible, terrible song choice for a tango - it screams American Smooth! Saying that, it was full of content and very well performed by the two of them. The song is so good everyone got a bit carried away - I can't say this was a bad dance, because it really wasn't, but for heaven's sake BBC, pick the right songs!

Poor Kevin. Having to choreograph a tango to a piece of music so unwholly unsuitable it might as well have been the dance of the bloody sugarplum fairy. Not only was it in 4/4 time, there were variations in tempo that made it impossible to have any consistency of movement. But it wasn't about the dancing was it? It was about the production. But whoever's 'genius' idea it was to pick that, please don't praise yourself too much. Copying a West End show does not a creative make. Grow an imagination, dumbass.

As for Frankie, she can dance, we know that. She's just an unfortunate pawn in my rant of the week. But also, weird math: Frankie + Green Make Up = Kelly Brook. Watch it back. Spooky. 


Anonymous said...

Thank goodness this week is over. P.S. I thought that Frankie + Green Make Up = Catherine Zeta Jones :-)

Anonymous said...

Nice angel and Buffy references !