A Hug For Sugg

Nov 9, 2018 by

A Hug For Sugg

One of the most telling aspects of last Saturday’s Strictly was Danny avoiding the dance-off despite being last on the judges’ leaderboard and no leaderboard ties making his bottom 2 escape look even more impressive.

It is, in fact, the first week of the entire series when the leaderboard last placer hasn’t ended up in the dance-off and subsequently been eliminated. And it wasn’t as if the judges actively encouraged people to vote for Danny, merely focusing on his loss of timing and how it threw off the whole routine. If he had nailed it perfectly you sense it would have been scoring 9s.

Danny’s pv may take a hit this week, however, after a brutal assassination of him in The Sun appeared today, alleging bullying behaviour in the training room.

This story reads like a vendetta against him and it will be interesting to see whether it is addressed in tomorrow night’s show.

Danny’s pv may take a hit this week after a brutal assassination of him in The Sun

Last week’s Dr Ranj vs Charles dance-off could have gone either way with only a 1pt difference between them on the judges’ leaderboard (Bruno’s 8 for Charles compared to his 7 for Dr Ranj). The judges chose to ignore Dr Ranj’s greater popularity across the series and saved Charles. It was a third dance-off save for him and he is becoming this series’ dance-off assassin.

Joe’s paso was a surprise pimp slot on the night. More surprising was his dance being awarded three 9s for what was an unimpressive routine. Shirley giving him a hug was another peculiar aspect. It is as if they are treating Joe like a special project in this series, largely immune from criticism and generously scored up to now.

Should we read this as Joe doing very well on the pv and the judges having to be seen to get behind him? It remains a difficult one to answer and we will only learn more in the weeks to come. Whether or not Joe makes the final remains in the hands of TPTB regardless of how he is doing on the pv.

Samba for Joe this week looks another tester for him and again he hasn’t looked a natural trying to get to grips with it in training. With Danny also having samba it will be informative to see their comparative scores and respective treatments at the hands of the judges.

More surprising was Joe’s paso being awarded three 9s for what was an unimpressive routine

Danny’s samba should be on later, and he has looked in training to have more natural affinity for the dance. Danny also has the more dance appropriate song to produce something authentic.

The battle for survival this week looks to lie between Charles, Graeme, Lauren and Kate. Charles has Charleston and a cool track for his and Karen’s routine. Based on training VTs this looks like being a triumph and after his dance-off appearance last week a good chance for him to escape the bottom two.

Lauren did a decent job with waltz back in week 1 and AJ was bullish on ITT this week, anticipating Lauren’s VW to be her best dance of the series so far. Training has looked promising.

Graeme and Oti look like having an extremely fun routine, with Graeme in gym instructor attire, complete with leg warmers, and the party spirit of their salsa being sold to the max. This could be the sort of thing TPTB select for the pimp slot, and after being drawn 3, 1 and 2 in the last 3 weeks, Graeme is due a late slot which would aid his survival prospects massively.

So the arrow starts to point towards Kate as most vulnerable pre-show. She is dancing QS and the speed and lightness of feet required for this will not play to her strengths.

Stacey has waltz to the perfect waltz track in ‘Moon River’. Past winners Tom Chambers (series 6, week 11, 35pts) and Louis Smith (series 10, week 6, 33pts) both danced their waltzes to this track.

Graeme and Oti look like having an extremely fun routine, with Graeme in gym instructor attire, complete with leg warmers

Faye has jive to an ideal jive track in ‘Reet Petite’. This looks the most likely show opener after Faye has enjoyed a series of later r.o. slots.

Ashley is doing a Contemporary dance as her and Pasha’s Couples’ Choice. It looks like being performed barefoot and she has a good track to sell what looks like being a highly artistic routine aimed at tugging the heartstrings.

In other news, the celebs taking part in this year’s Strictly Christmas Special have been revealed and it is an interesting field. William Hill has issued a market on this. The studio audience get to decide the winner.

We also now know the week after Blackpool we will see a Lindy-Hop-A-Thon for the first time.

Lindy Hop is kind of a mix of jive and Charleston elements. With Ashley not having done a jive yet she might be pencilled in for that at Blackpool. Among the big guns, all of Stacey, Faye and Danny are yet to dance Charleston, while Danny and Joe still have their Couples’ Choice card to play.

This week’s songs and dances:

Ashley and Pasha – Couples’ Choice (Contemporary) to ‘Unsteady’ by Erich Lee (Gravity Remix by X Ambassadors)
Charles and Karen – Charleston to ‘No Diggity’ by Minimatic
Danny and Amy – Samba to ‘Feels Like Home’ by Sigala, Fuse ODG, Sean Paul, Kent Jones
Faye and Giovanni – Jive to ‘Reet Petite’ by Jackie Wilson
Graeme and Oti – Salsa to ‘Follow The Leader’ by Soca Boys
Joe and Dianne – Samba to ‘MMMBop’ by Hanson
Kate and Aljaz – Quickstep to ‘I Want You To Want Me’ by Letters To Cleo
Lauren and AJ – Viennese Waltz to ‘You Are The Reason’ by Calum Scott and Leona Lewis
Stacey and Kevin – Waltz to ‘Moon River’ by Audrey Hepburn

Last week’s judges’ leaderboard:

Craig – Darcey – Shirley – Bruno

Ashley & Pasha (7) Foxtrot 9 10 10 10 = 39 (10)
Faye & Giovanni (8) Tango 9 10 9 10 = 38 (9)
Stacey & KfG (5) Couple’s Choice Street/Commercial 9 9 9 9 = 36 (8)
Joe & Dianne (10) Paso 7 9 9 9 – 34 (7)
Lauren & AJ (1) Jive 7 8 8 8 = 31 (6)
Graeme & AJ (2) Waltz 6 7 8 8 = 29 (5)
Charles & Karen (9) VW 6 7 7 8 = 28 (4) – Bottom 2
Dr Ranj & Janette (4) Samba 6 7 7 7 = 27 (3) – Eliminated
Kate & Aljaz (3) Argentine Tango 4 6 6 7 = 23 (2)
Danny & Amy (6) QS 4 6 5 7 = 22 (1)


  1. James

    I’ve had a small bet on Charles to receive the highest score this week at 16/1 (each way) with Star Sports.

    Charles has a top score of 36 for his couples choice, and Karen has achieved 36 on two previous occasions when performing the Charleston (with Nicky Byrne & Mark Wright).

    Sadly the each way part of the bet is only for two places this week, so even if Charles gets a score in the mid 30s, I am still reliant on one of Ashley or Faye to under perform.

  2. Keley Ann

    Are you seriously questioning whether Joe will make the final? I’d be surprised if he doesn’t win.

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