Back in September, when Strictly Come Dancing launched this year’s contest, EastEnders’ star Jake Wood set the dance floor alight with his snake hips and topped the leaderboard. Jake was quickly a hot favourite to win the contest, while reality TV star Mark Wright was a self-confessed “Marky No-Moves”.
But when Jake and Mark faced each other in the semi-finals dance-off, it was Mark who had the moves to get him to the final…
So, what happened to Jake?
He had finished bottom of the semi-finals leaderboard, with 61/80 for his cha cha and Viennese waltz with Janette Manrara.
“Your hips were back in action,” Darcey Bussell commented, after Jake’s cha cha. “They were working very hard but not always in the right places.”
“Yes, your hips were going full pelt in every different direction,” added Craig Revel Horwood. “Your cha cha lacked any finesse, skill and subtlety.”
“You’ve got to believe you’re a good ballroom dancer,” added Darcey. “I can see you doubt that.”
“You’re almost paralysed by all the dance technique in your head,” Len Goodman told Jake, after his Viennese waltz. “You just have to come out and dance.”
So, even before the viewers had voted, it didn’t sound good for Jake, who opted to dance the cha cha again.
Mark, on the other hand, has impressed the judges with his efforts, helped along by Karen Hauer, and they danced the rumba again.
“There’s very little in it,” said Len, after the dance-off, where Darcey and Bruno Tonioli voted for Jake. Craig had voted for Mark, which left head judge Len with the deciding vote. “It’s the toughest decision of all but I’m going to save Mark and Karen.
“I admire you so much,” Len had told Mark after his Viennese waltz. “You’ve got no dance experience and have fought your way to the semi-finals.”
And, now, to the Strictly Come Dancing finals on BBC1, Saturday, December 20, 6.30pm.
Click here for our semi-finals photo special