Strictly Come Dancing: week two – live

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Aside from this ritual slaughter of Lady Gaga, this is a great Cha-Cha from Helen. She has fabulous energy and makes it all look effortless. A couple of the transitions are a bit clunky, but we can just focus on Gorka’s chest instead. Really enjoyed that – think Helen is going to prove herself to be a brilliant all-rounder.

Next up it’s Helen and Gorka!

This week they’re dancing the Cha Cha to ‘Rain On Me’ by Lady Gaga and Ariana Grande. This was my favourite tune of 2020 – the lockdown anthem we all needed. Very happy to see it join the Strictly playlist.

Last week Helen showed us she can definitely do elegant ballroom, but can she bring some sexy sass to Latin?

Scores: 7,8,7,8 – a total of 30 for Ellie and Nikita.

Craig thought it was good – he wants Ellie to lift up into her chest and focus on her heel leads, but it had lovely expression. Motsi agrees – Ellie’s arms and hands had great extension, and the way Nikita and Ellie dance together is special. Shirley thought there was magic in something so simple, but agrees more work needed on the heel leads. Anton thought it was lovely, Ellie had a beautiful line.

Elly’s dress is gorgeous, and this dance has a lovely romantic feel to it. Ellie’s footwork is lovely, and Nikita is doing a beautiful job of showcasing her natural elegance. Should a Waltz have a floor spin? Not sure that’s allowed, but never mind. Simple, classic, enjoyed that very much.

It’s time for Ellie S and Nikita!

Tonight they’re dancing the Waltz to ‘Can’t Help Falling In Love’ by Elvis Presley. Hopefully this will assuage the disquiet of Allison Pearson in The Telegraph, who can’t see it working and is worried that this beloved dance conversation is becoming a ‘woke box-ticking exercise.’

God forbid that Strictly delivers a dance that doesn’t fit the traditional Ballroom/Latin mould. I mean, where might that take us? A hip-hop Paso? A dance that has 20 seconds of profound silence? Couple’s Choice? *clutches pearls*

Scores: 5,6,6,7 – a total of 24 for James and Amy.

Anton loved the open work but James needs to dominate Amy through posture. Craig thought it was ploddy and lacked the v-shape, and it also lacked intent and drama, but James has amazing musicality. Motsi felt James was a bit hesitant and he needs more power and push. Shirley saw a glitch in the middle, but it had good atmosphere.

Some postural issues from James – he’s got nice timing, but his frame isn’t locked and this all needs more drive and intent. Just a bit wispy, really. Oh, what do I know.

Next up it’s James and Amy!

They’re taking the Slot Of Death to dance the Tango to ‘Bad Habits’ by Ed Sheeran. Is there any Sheeran song that hasn’t done a spin on the Strictly dancefloor? Does he write these songs thinking ‘this would make a banging Viennese Waltz’?

Bonus drink if any of the judges reference ‘bad habits’ in their critiques. My money’s on Craig.

Scores: 6,7,6,7 – a total of 26 for Will and Nancy. Generous.

Shirley manages to get ‘easy on the eye’ and ‘your little face’ into the first sentence (drink everything) – there were too many mistakes for her. Anton spotted Will missing a step – he has a great groove, but his posture needs to come up. Craig thought Will danced it too heavily and it was a bit jagged, but he has exceptional rhythm and performance. Motsi thought Will’s hips weren’t lying.

I usually love Motsi’s outfits, but that looks like one of those scouring sponges from Lidl.

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