Sparkling Gem

Nov 10, 2017 by

Sparkling Gem

The UK media has been having a field day this week with Aston’s ‘shock’ elimination. But it looked like one of the most blatant, pre-meditated hatchet jobs the show has ever carried out. The running order, the comments, the leaderboard positioning… it was all perfectly executed.

It is perhaps the strongest indication yet a male winner is not wanted this year.

While Joe has had great treatment pretty much series-long leading into his rumba tomorrow night, he could find the rug pulled from under him performing the ‘dance of death’. Early training footage has not looked convincing.

It looked like one of the most blatant, pre-meditated hatchet jobs the show has ever carried out

Jonnie looks teed up for a potential comeback after 2 tough weeks, dancing foxtrot to an evocative Adele track.

Davood has a chance to ham it up in a Cockney outfit and setting performing an entertaining Charleston that he should be able to sell well. Last night’s ITT training footage suggested this should come together well enough.

After a high profile elimination casualty like Aston there is usually a duffer backlash and given we are currently left with a 6-3 split female-male Susan or Ruth might be the more likely target tomorrow night compared to Jonnie. But assuming these 3 depart the show in the next 3 weeks TPTB may not care about the order they leave, leaving a potential 4-2 split in the quarter-final.

Ed Balls was eliminated doing tango and it looks on paper a dance that is unlikely to suit the pint-sized Susan. ‘Firework’ is a decent song and Susan/Kev have been playing the Strictly game astutely, talking up what they are looking to achieve – expect them to be first in line to spin a story as to how important it is for them to get to Blackpool next week – but their time might be up.

Mollie may well be talked up and over-scored so the judges can run with the ‘we were right to save you’ narrative

Ruth has a classic ballroom track for her foxtrot with Anton, it looks a routine in Anton’s sweet spot incorporating top hats and canes, Ruth should do a competent enough job, and it has the potential to outscore Jonnie’s foxtrot.

Mollie may well be talked up and over-scored so the judges can run with the ‘we were right to save you’ narrative. Alexandra gets the first AT of the series. Might this be a 2nd pimp slot for her? To ensure her safety we can probably expect to see her at the top of the leaderboard once more.

This looked very much part of last week’s narrative with her CCC awarded a very dubious 39 from her first trap 1 of the series and earliest running order slot to date. On ITT this week it was amusing to see them reprise the moment she lost balance and had to be hauled back by Gorka while Joanne Clifton was telling viewers the routine was perfection.

Over-scoring Alex will not endear her to viewers and if Aston’s departure was done in part to encourage viewers to ensure they vote for their favourite this likely won’t help Alex much either. If she is struggling on the public vote it is highly debatable this is down to voter apathy.

If Alex is struggling on the public vote it is highly debatable this is down to voter apathy

Debbie has had 3 great weeks and salsa to that Boys Town Gang track doesn’t look a great fit. It may well be a week when they apply the breaks on her.

Gemma looks to have an open goal to produce something very good by way of a VW. On paper, it is the ideal evocative track for a classy VW and Aljaz has a track record for producing strong VWs. It might even see a first pimp slot of the series for her if it is in the script to continue to try and build her up as a challenger to the clear front 2.

To try and ensure one of the lesser dancers is eliminated we can probably anticipate no leaderboard ties.

Ruth, Jonnie, Susan and Davood were all on late last week and look potential early starters this week. Pre-show Davood or Joe look the 2 among the better dancers most at risk of bottom 2 but it looks more likely one of Ruth, Jonnie or Susan will be lined up for a take down tomorrow night. Only the live show will tell us more.

This week’s song and dances:

Alexandra and Gorka – Argentine Tango to Mi Confession by Gotan Project
Debbie and Giovanni – Salsa to I Can’t Take My Eyes Off Of You by Boys Town Gang
Gemma and Aljaz – Viennese Waltz to You Don’t Have To Say You Love Me by Brenda Lee
Mollie and AJ Paso – Layla by Derek and the Dominoes
Ruth and Anton – Foxtrot to Mack The Knife by Bobby Darin
Susan and Kevin – Tango to Firework by Katy Perry
Davood and Nadiya – Charleston to The Lambeth Walk by The Pasadena Roof Orchestra
Joe and Katya – Rumba to One by U2 and Mary J. Blige
Jonnie and Oti – Foxtrot to Someone Like You by Adele



  1. Stoney

    happy to see Joe escaped the dreaded Rumba unscathed. Also got a decent enough score with it. Susan has not been in a dance off yet which suggests she has a strong support. Can’t wait for Joe to inherit most of that. I think we will see Joe unleashed at Blackpool possibly getting a few 10s.

  2. Stoney

    The market now seems to be taking Joe as a serious contender for the glitter ball. He is polling extremely well and is generally well liked and is on ‘a journey’
    I have already pointed to the fact that he picks up a huge vote transfer once Susan goes out. Am I the only 1 here that thinks he wins from this point?

    • Rob

      Hi Stoney. I sense this year’s Strictly is going to be decided by TPTB and I still have doubts whether Joe’s face fits as their ideal winner.

      On the plus side, it seems to have been in the script series-long to big him up and (imho) regularly over-score him. Having just seen his salsa training for Blackpool… it didn’t impress me. But this has often been the case only for him to be scored highly and talked up on the live show.

      In my view there is very little in it in terms of dance ability between him, Davood, Mollie and Gemma. My guess is, Joe is probably touring next year so the show would like him to be a finalist.

      I also have doubts votes will transfer to him from Susan. I think most Strictly viewers have their favourites they vote for each week. While others purely decide on the night who they are going to vote for.

      • Stoney

        Hi Rob, I would be more than happy with a Debbie win and Joe to come top 3. I guess this is a likely outcome also. In fact the only winner I wouldn’t want from the top 5 in the odds is Alex. Shes my max red.

      • Kelly M

        Rob, when’s the new Strictly analysis

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