Strictly Come Blogging

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

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Sunday Service: Week 9

With only eight couples left, everyone needs to be amazing, or we'll all be underwhelmed.

One thing I have to say off the bat, though. Can someone please tell Sir Bruce that he is not a) a judge or b) a parrot? All he does is give his comments in between the judges, or repeat what the judges say. It's really irritating!

For a dance Susanna had said in the week she hadn't connected with, she did a fantastic job. Her performance and facial expressions were brilliant. I loved Kevin's choreography. Her cha cha walks have improved over the course of the week, but they still weren't perfect. She lacked hip action. With a performance level like that, I almost didn't care.

I thought Ashley & Ola did a solid job with the waltz. It was very romantic. Ashley's top line was improved. Bruno was right about the music, it was difficult to dance to, and Ashley coped well with that. He made it look effortless.

Natalie & Artem's tango had drive and attitude. She did a few odd things with her head, which meant it wasn't perfect for me. There was an error in the middle. It was a good tango, but it wasn't the best I have ever seen.

I like the parts of Mark & Iveta's foxtrot which were out of hold better than in hold. Mark didn't stride out enough in hold. He needed longer steps. I loved the feel of the dance, but it lacked flow and flair. Fun to watch, but I think Mark is coming near the end of the road.

I liked the second half of Sophie & Brendan's rumba better than the first. About halfway though, she suddenly connected with Brendan. A bashful smile apppeared on her face, and it was very sweet. She made some lovely lines, although her arms were a bit forgotton on the transitions. Rumbas can be romantic rather than passionate - remember Cherie & James?

Despite all the acting lessons, Ben looked the same as every week to me. Not enough personality for a Charleston. It's a good thing Ben is stong enough to chuck Kristina about, because the tricks saved an otherwise uneventful dance. It's like he's going through the motions, but he doesn't perform for the audience enough. Competent, but not great.

I really enjoyed Abbey & Aljaž's paso. She made some lovely lines, and coped well some difficult choreography. I don't like You Got The Love as a paso song. I didn't like it last time it was used either. A solid paso, but it didn't set the world on fire.

Patrick & Anya's Viennese waltz was nice, but felt more like an American smooth. Too much out of hold for my liking. I agreed with the judge's comments about the standing spins. No fleckurl either, which Patrick would have been capable of attempting.

This week was a lot of competent performances, but lacked wow factor. It's getting very difficult to pick a bottom two. I think the bottom two on the judges leaderboard were right. Ben is competent, but lacks wow factor. Mark isn't technically as strong as the others, but has more performance than Ben. I would rather see Mark stay than Ben, but I think it might have been Mark's last dance. I guess it depends who ends up in the dance-off.

Here are the videos...

Susanna & Kevin

Ashley & Ola

Natalie & Artem

Mark & Iveta

Sophie & Brendan

Ben & Kristina

Abbey & Aljaž

Patrick & Anya


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