Strictly 2017: Week 8

This week is a HUGE week for the couples because if they get through this week, they will get to perform in the beautiful Blackpool Tower Ballroom, I’ve actually been there and it is just amazing! I always feel that this week, along with the week before the final, are the worst weeks to go out on because it means you’ve just missed out on a huge milestone in the competition. So, let’s get on with discussing the performances.

Susan and Kevin – 8
I loved this dance, I think Susan is improving every week and this week was no exception. It was the first dance they have done that didn’t have a story or a character and wasn’t fun but it just goes to show that they don’t need to do that – don’t get me wrong, I love that they are always fun and story/character driven dances but this dance was proof that they don’t need to hide behind a performance and she is becoming a dancer. Her footwork was excellent and it shows that they really have been working on it, I would say the only thing that they need to work on now is her frame and the top line, everything else is magical.

Joe and Katya – 8
I think this was such a great dance. Joe is another one who is improving every week and I just love when that happens with the non-dancers and I always want them to win over a trained dancer. Joe’s acting really came in handy for this dance and it made the performance so much better. His technique is also improving – a few weeks ago he did the cha-cha and it’s pretty similar in the leg and hip department to the Rumba and he has come on leaps and bounds from that awkward cha-cha! His hip action and legs were so good! I think the biggest thing they need to work on now is his hands and arms, they were in some strange positions during this dance. Sometimes, his wrist was bent which looks odd because it breaks the line of the arm.

Ruth and Anton – 4
Never have I seen a foxtrot with actual trotting before, if I had to watch this dance without knowing which style it was I would probably have guessed quickstep. The VT was just Anton emphasising it was a slow foxtrot and a slow dance but it just wasn’t. There was a lot of backwards running and the first time I saw it, I thought they were both doing it but on watching it again, it was just Ruth but I do think the music may have been a bit fast.

Davood and Nadiya – 9
This was my favourite dance of the night! The only reason it’s not a 10 is that they lost synchronicity a few times but it was brilliant. The lifts were incredible, especially that last one, I don’t think I’ve seen it done like that before, Georgia and Gio did a similar one in their Charleston but she landed whereas Davood caught Nadiya before she reached the floor. His swivel was excellent but he did lose it a tiny bit when she was on his shoulders which is understandable because he’s obviously not as light with her on top of him like that. Last week was their turning point, if they can keep this standard up, they will be around for a while!

Gemma and Aljaz – 7
This was definitely an improvement on last week for these two but there was something off about it for me and I can’t put my finger on it. I watched this back twice but I can’t see where her shoe came off but anyway, her footwork was a bit wobbly, maybe because of the shoe thing but because I couldn’t see where it happened, I don’t know how long the shoe was off for. I think her posture has improved and there wasn’t much gapping in this at all which is great!

Alexandra and Gorka – 9
I love the Argentine Tango and I’m so glad they gave the first one to someone who would be able to execute it well. I really enjoyed this dance which is something I can’t usually say about Alexandra’s performances (don’t kill me please). I love that they started at the top, I wish more people danced up there on the balcony! I was a little nervous while the stairography was happening because it was so quick and I didn’t want it to go wrong. Her kicks were so sharp but she still needs to work on her feet, although they are a lot better than they were a few weeks ago, at times, she is still a little pigeon-toed but for the first AT of the series, it has set the bar very high! Also, Vincent Simone (king of the Argentine Tango) was in the front row and he looked very happy with it!

Mollie and AJ – 7
I’m getting quite frustrated with the judges now – the last couple of weeks they have been so mean to Mollie, this dance was full of attack and you could see how hard they have been working this week. Her arms had good shaping, her performance level was very high and she acted it brilliantly. Yes, she may have lost balance a few times and needed more shaping through the body and she still needs to work on her core but you can’t do that in a week, it takes time to build up the core muscles. I really hope they are able to avoid the dance-off because they just don’t deserve it and they shouldn’t have been there last week (neither did Aston).

Jonnie and Oti – 5
I feel like Jonnie’s getting worse which is a shame because I really wanted him to do well at the beginning because he was the first person with a disability etc but this was quite a boring routine. His footwork is a bit heavy and he was looking down quite a bit, maybe because Oti let him lead so he was looking where he was going? I think Oti is such an incredible choreographer, one of the best on the show but this wasn’t her best.

Debbie and Giovanni – 7
I wasn’t a fan of this dance at all. It was full of mistakes and it just didn’t flow for me. She had a few balance issues and missed a few moves. The lifts were so much better than their Charleston week but I don’t think this was Debbie’s dance. I did like the beginning when Gio shouted Debbie, it made me laugh, only on Strictly would you get a huge applause for shouting a name😂.

The Results
Based on the dances, I thought that it may be Ruth and Jonnie in the bottom two, and rightfully so. I was also a bit worried about Mollie because she’s been there for two weeks in a row which wasn’t right so I’m glad that people got behind them and voted. There’s nothing like a shock elimination to get people to vote well! I would have been happy for both Ruth or Jonnie to go this week because, for me, they are the worst in the competition but based on the dance-off, I would have saved Jonnie.

I’m so excited for Blackpool next week! I’m over the moon that Susan and Kevin are through because as you may have noticed from my previous posts, they are my favourite couple! What did you think of this week’s performances? Did the right couple go home? I’d love to know what you think in the comments! If you missed my post on week 7, you can read that here .

Thanks for reading, Em xo

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