Due to a tragic fluke of semantics, this contest is not Strictly Come Standing. If it were, Scott Mills would be the man to beat. Nobody else can stand quite as well as he. Sometimes he stands on his partner’s toes, but let us not carp. Let us instead applaud his ability to look at his hands as though seeing them for the first time; give a big hurrah for the way he practises feverishly all week only to arrive on the dance floor with no idea of a single step; how he gamely wears any costume he’s given, be it a large lobster or Uncle Fester. Scott Mills is fun.
What he’s not is a dancer, although he is not alone in this – neither is Judy Murray. This week’s Strictly was the famed Halloween Week, and Judy was dressed as Cruella De Vil for her routine, which featured a loose American Smooth, a car, a wig and two dalmations, both of them better dancers. But Judy is unashamedly having fun, and the voting public are loving watching her blossom. She once again got through to next week’s competition. This is why far better dancers, such as Thom Evans, have gone out. Admittedly, Thom had all the personality of a week old potato, which probably didn’t help him. But still. This is a dancing competition, dudes.
By contrast, Pixie Lott, who began this competition as an excellent dancer, has not progressed at all and in fact got worse marks this week than she did in Week Two (eat that, TV geeks). Neither has Caroline Flack, although it must be said she seems like she would be a great mate to go down the pub with. She might run off with your son afterwards, but this is a mere detail. Caroline danced a terrific samba, despite wearing a purple afro wig the size of the Shard, but was rewarded with only a “seven” from Craig. Bucking this trend was Frankie Saturdays (yes I know that’s not her real name) who scored a 10 from Bruno for her beautiful tango.
Mark Wright danced a fabulous jive – the dance that, along with the Rhumba, sorts the real dancers from the wannabes – and Alison Hammond danced the only American Smooth I have ever seen that did not feature a single lift, a subject studiously avoided by everyone, from her partner to the judges to Tess and Zoe. Yes, Zoe Ball was standing in for Claudia. She did an excellent job. It cannot be long surely before Strictly is presented by Claudia and Zoe and the hapless Tess, a woman who cannot even walk downstairs unaided, is retired off to spend her days exchanging unfunny jokes with Brucie.
Anyhoo, Scott and Alison were in the bottom two. Alison was hampered by the costume department dressing her as a marquee in a gale, Scott by his inability to recognise any kind of rhythm even if wore a t-shirt saying “Hi, I’m Rhythm”. Anyway, despite most of Alison’s dance looking like Aljaz making a bed and Scott’s routine to the Addams Family being enormous fun, Scott went out.
What will it take to get Judy out – a tank?