Hi everyone, what a show last night! The Strictly pro dancers and celebrities will all be feeling the pressure ahead of the first vote on Sunday night, and you may be wondering who I think will leave first after Saturday's performances? Right now so early on in the competition, it really could be anyone – as it's all about popularity at the moment. I suspect those at the bottom of the leaderboard like Katie Piper and Susannah Constantine will be fine though as they will have viewers getting behind them for the first few weeks. Its those in the middle that might be in trouble.
For any of the couples, finding out you are in the bottom two of the first night is depressing, and it can be really tough and soul destroying to be the first to leave the competition. You start something and it’s a big whirlwind and then it’s over and you are out. If the partnership isn’t great mind you, then some couples might be relieved to be out so soon! But even so, to be voted out first isn’t a good experience.
Pasha and Ashley's dance was one of the best
A lot of couples had really improved this week, and it's hard to pinpoint my favourite performance from last night, but there were many strong contenders. Pasha and Ashley's dance was certainly one of the best, and Pasha looked inspired by her - he has a great partner. We know she can dance and she gave a really good cha-cha, you would be pretty pleased with yourself if you gave a dance like that in the final so week two first Latin dance – just wow!
Another one to watch is Graeme – he has this infectious attitude and you just cant help but like him as a person. He gave it absolutely everything. I didn’t like the choreography of the dance but it still worked and once he understands ballroom dancing he will do well. I think the judges were a bit too harsh on him and that wasn’t particularly fair.
Katie Piper could have been praised more
The judges also could have been nicer to Katie, it's a shame that they didn’t give her a bit more praise as we can see that she is really struggling. There's no point in smashing someone when they are already down. Katie needs complete confidence and to be acknowledged that she has improved and worked hard. Compared to last week she came back fighting. I know from my own experience that when you have a partner that struggles with nerves, if you don’t give them some form of praise going forward then it's not good. It's going to take Gorka Monday and Tuesday to get her back on track confidence wise, but let's hope he does.
It wasn't nice of Bruno to be so unkind to Susannah
I think Darcey picked up that Susannah had improved from last week, but it did look like lack of training. I am sure she had trained for many hours but it just didn’t seem like she knew what she was doing, which is a real shame. The first rule is to emulate what you see and it looked like she had never seen a dance in her life. On the positive side, she got through it and hopefully the next dance will get better, plus she looked beautiful as did Anton. It was also good to see that Shirley made a positive comment about her improvement – people need to hear that. As for Bruno's vicious comments though, it really upsets me that he continues to laugh at people. There is a place and a time for people who can take it and I think he fails to recognise that an opinion may have consequences on someone's performance. If I had been Anton I think I would probably have spoken up as I did last year with Bruno when he was laughing. It doesn’t wash well with me.
I loved seeing Charles wearing a tailsuit
I was impressed again by Kate and Alijaz. Kate has such a great attitude and when she is on the dance floor she gives it everything. I will say though, I was surprised that the judges didn’t pick up on her terrible top line. She was upright throughout and her position was wrong for a ballroom dance. This of course will get better throughout the competition, and Kate really understands the theatre of Strictly which I love. Another person who is obviously 100 percent committed is Joe Sugg. He has what it takes and knows what he is there to do. I think he will only get better as the show goes on.
Seeing Charles in a tailsuit – something that doesn’t happen all too often on Strictly – was also really nice, he certainly looked the part. As a dance, I think he and Karen gave a lovely performance, Charles now needs to start driving and move across the ballroom and work on his timings to be up there with the top runners.
It will be the end of the honeymoon period now as things get tougher and the next couple of weeks the pro dancers will be getting tired, having started training since the end of July. It's when the pressure comes on and things start to build up their pace. I’m looking forward to tuning in next week.