This has been a season of firsts, and this week was no exception. As well as seeing Edyta replaced Julianne as Cody’s partner whilst the lovely Ms Hough recovers from surgery, our remaining six couples all have to compete in a team dance- three couples doing paso, three doing cha cha, for extra marks to add to their individual scores.
Six couples, two teams, three judges- but someone has to go home
- Warren & Kym (foxtrot): After a proper showbiz start, somehow Warren really failed to go anywhere with this foxtrot- it never really picked up into a proper dance, which is a real shame. A good effort, but he still isn’t hitting the heights he reached earlier in the season.
- Susan & Tony (paso doble): This one blew hot and cold for me- there were moments when I didn’t really ‘believe’ in the power and passion of dance, but then equally there were points when I was swept along with it all. It didn’t light my fire, but it threw off a few sparks.
- Maurice & Cheryl (cha cha): The judges seemed pleased with this, but Maurice’s cha cha didn’t really wow me- it was another case of the professional looking great and the celebrity not really keeping up or having nearly as much to do. A solid effort, but not an outstanding one.
- Cody & Edyta (Viennese waltz): coping with a new partner is never easy, especially not partway through a dance competition- and to be honest I much prefer Julianne’s choreography over Edyta’s. Still, I was prepared to give this Viennese waltz the benefit of the doubt, but unfortunately it didn’t take off- it seemed to be all about showing off Edyta than showcasing what Cody can do.
- Lance & Lacey (rumba): With a park bench and no shoes, Lance and Lacey’s routine was literally barefoot in the park (or at least on the dancefloor), and overall it left me with mixed feelings. I didn’t see much point in not wearing dance shoes, and whilst the actual dance had both good and bad sections, overall it generated this lovely atmosphere of two lovers enjoying a day outside. Good on performance, not so consistent on technique.
- Brooke & Derek (foxtrot): After being knocked off the top spot last week, Brooke and Derek seemed to be determined to come back with a vengeance, performing a foxtrot that scored a perfect 30 with the judges. An elegant and charming routine, this foxtrot flew by so fast that it seemed a shame when it came to an end. If Brooke can raise her game this much, she should be able to truly go all the way.
- Team cha cha (Susan, Cody and Lance): First onto the floor were Susan, Cody and Lance and their respective partners for this group cha cha, and unfortunately it wasn’t really as polished as it could have been. Everyone looked a little awkward and out of place during the weaker group sections at the start and finish, with only the solos faring somewhat better. Lance and Lacey did by far and away the best solo section, with Cody trying hard on his part but not really living up to them, and Susan getting the ‘proud as a peacock’ attitude right but not really impressing in general.
- Team paso doble (Brooke, Warren and Maurice): With their strong and passionate performance, Team Paso completely outshone Team Cha Cha- admittedly, the paso lends itself more to a group dance, but even so credit must be given for an excellent routine that worked well through both group and solo spots. Oh, and I love those dark blue dresses.
- Lionel Ritchie performed his new single, but for me the highlight was Alec and Edyta and their lovely accompanying rumba. What a great dance. Later in the show, he returned with ‘Dancing on the Ceiling’, last used in the cha cha face off, and always good fun. But why has Max shaved his head?
- Macy’s Stars of Dance: this week, we saw a fusion of dance and magic- not something I would particularly go out of my way to see, but it was a fun and fluid routine.
- Elimination: After Team Paso and Lance & Lacey were saved, Susan & Tony and Cody & Edyta were left in the bottom two, but in the end it was Susan & Tony who went home. She’s had a good run, but at this stage in the competition I think it was right for her to go.