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Louise. Lou. Loulabelle. Loulabelle44. Louby.
Proudly blogging about Strictly Come Dancing ALL YEAR ROUND since 2006. Always spoiler-free.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Sunday Service: Week 4

I didn't watch the show live, so it's now 12.45am, and I'm enjoying tea and toast while watching the programme.

I finally enjoyed one of Jason's performances. The paso was a nice progression from last week's tango, and thankfully didn't have any camp nonsense in the middle. I loved Kristina's choreography and it was a great song choice too. Jason was strong, and made some lovely shapes with his arms and hips. A little gallopy in places, but I liked it. Performances like that make me see what others see in Jason.

Technically, Alex & James' rumba was a failure. Alex's technique was pretty ropy. She doesn't push her feet into the floor. In fact, at times she picks them up, which in turn means she lacks hip action. A brave try, but really not very good. Her arms have improved, and are not so scarecrow. The saving grace of the routine was the choreography. James is an absolute master when it comes to rumbas, and this was wonderful. His and Alex's chemistry was nice, but not smoldering.

I loved the opening of Rory & Erin's cha cha, with Rory bounding down the stairs. I loved Rory's energy throughout the dance. He was really selling it. However, Rory's timing was all over the shop. It was a little uncomfortable to watch. Technically he wasn't great either. A good attempt, but it really wasn't his dance.

There has been a massive improvement in Audley's posture this week. He looked great, and only raised his shoulders once or twice. He seems to have really opened up from his chest now. The foxtrot is a hard dance to sell - it can be a little boring from an audience perspective - but Audley's charm made a simple dance pleasant to watch. Natalie kept it simple. He needs to make sure he brings his feet together properly on closing steps.

Nancy & Anton's paso was not good. Nancy is like a soggy bun. She has no strength in her core, and her posture is pretty bad. She looked as though she was trying to keep up with Anton throughout the dance, like a small child runs after her mummy. She was counting out loud, which is never a good look, and she needed Anton to tell her what she should be doing throughout the second half of the dance. I did not like it at all.

It's such a shame Lulu kept forgetting the routine, because it was a nice performance. It wasn't very strong technically, but it was entertaining and joyful. I'm not sure what running up the stairs for a groove with the other contestants has to do with samba. I presume Brendan put it in because it meant that it was 32 counts where Lulu didn't have to remember any steps.

The Viennese waltz was Holly's best dance by a country mile. I loved the opening, although it took way to long to get into hold. Overall, it was really solid, and it was so good to finally see Holly & Artem do well. It was really romantic, dreamy and elegant.

I loved Chelsee & Pasha's quickstep. The unlikely aviation theme actually worked really well. There was lots of quickstep content, and Chelsee seemed a lot tighter and in control. I think it was Chelsee's best dance. A total delight.

Harry & Aliona's waltz was very pleasant. Harry found his feet last week, and his confidence has not waned. I just wish he didn't look so serious. The waltz is supposed to be romantic, and I found the whole thing a tad formal. I am so glad that Alesha made the point not to penalise the celebrities for the choreography. Harry did a good job with what he was given.

Anita & Robin's American smooth left me a little bit cold. I wasn't blown away by it, but I can't quite put my finger on why. The lifts were very ambitious, and they were executed well. Anita's leg was very bent on the arabesque spin, which I didn't like. Otherwise, it was pleasant, but lacked wow factor.

As an homage to Patrick Swayze, Robbie & Ola's routine was brilliant. Robbie was Johnny Castle. As a jive, it wasn't quite so convincing. Robbie was a bit stompy when he should have been up on the balls of his feet, and it lacked precision. But in performance terms, it was my favourite Robbie number so far.

Russell & Flavia's tango was very good. It had plenty of tango content (you wouldn't expect anything less from Flavia), and Russell executed the routine very well. I just wish it had been a bit more strong and arrogant. Russell need to find his inner swine, but he has such a sweet nature I'm not sure its possible.

Chelsee & Pasha were streets ahead of everyone else this week.

Nancy remains in my bottom two, and this week it's Alex who should be joining her. The rumba was just not Alex's dance. Alex still has more to show us, but based on this week she should be in the bottom two. Naturally, it should be Nancy on her way home.

Here are the videos...

Jason & Kristina

Alex & James

Rory & Erin

Audley & Natalie

Nancy & Anton

Lulu & Brendan

Holly & Artem

Chelsee & Pasha

Harry & Aliona

Anita & Robin

Robbie & Ola

Russell & Flavia


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