Danny Mac lit up the dance floor as Strictly Come Dancing went to the Blackpool Tower Ballroom, getting a perfect score for his Charleston. But Ed Balls crashed and burned with his jive…
The seven remaining couples in the Strictly Come Dancing contest strutted their stuff in the Blackpool Tower Ballroom…but it was only Danny Mac who didn’t put a foot wrong.
Danny danced a Charleston with partner Oti Mabuse to “Puttin’ On The Ritz” by Gregory Porter which Craig Revel Horwood summed up in “one word, three syllables: fab-u-lous”.
“That was a showstopper,” added Bruno Tonioli. “It was like watching a Broadway show. It was pure, good dancing.”
“It was fantastic,” agreed Len Goodman.
“The speed of it!” said Darcey Bussell. “Unbelievable!”
And none of the other couples could keep up with him. Danny and Oti topped the leader board with a perfect score of 40 points.
Louise and partner Kevin Clifton danced a paso doble to “Explosive” by Bond and “I was blown away”, said Len.
“It was dynamic and passionate throughout,” Darcey said.
“A luscious Game of Thrones paso,” Bruno added. “It had beauty, artistry, power…Fabulous!”
“It did not disappoint,” said Craig.
Ore’s Blackpool dance was a Viennese waltz with Joanne Clifton to Frank Sinatra’s “That’s Life” which Craig thought was “a little bit skippy”.
But “it had the longest-lasting fleckle I have ever seen on Strictly”, said Darcey.
And Bruno thought it was “cool, sophisticated and slick”.
Claudia Fragapane opened the competition at Blackpool, dancing a jive with AJ Pritchard that, said Craig, “would have scored a 10 but, unfortunately, there was a tiny mistake. I really and truly loved it”.
“Fast, pumping, bags of beans, both of you!” Darcey exclaimed. “It was dynamic throughout but there was a tiny mistake.”
“Yes, something did go wrong,” added Bruno.
And Len noticed it, too.
All the judges knocked off a point for the mistake, putting Claudia and AJ third with 36 points.
Judge Rinder’s salsa with Oksana Platero to “Spice Up Your Life” by the Spice Girls earned him a new name from Craig: “Judge Grinder”, and a score of 33.
“I thought it was hip-tastic,” Craig told him.
“That was certainly your dance,” added Darcey. “I’ve never seen a guy shake their cheeks like that!”
“You re-invented the term ‘booty-licious’ – and I think that’s why you lost some timing,” Bruno told the Judge.
Greg Rutherford also had problems with his quickstep with Natalie Lowe to “Hand Jive” by Sha Na Na, which scored 32.
“There was too much power, making it a bit bouncy,” Craig told him.
“I think you mucked up the leap,” Len added, “which is ironic for a long jumper.”
But it was Ed Balls who failed to impress the most, scoring just 23 points for his jive with Katya Jones to Jerry Lee Lewis’s “Great Balls Of Fire”.
Ed made a spectacular arrival to the dance floor, being lowered on to it while playing a flaming piano (and he really can play), but his dancing was a spectacle for less exciting reasons.
“It looked like you were playing hopscotch in an all-girls school,” Craig told him. “But you are committed and I love that about you.”
“I’ve booked a shrink, a chiropractor and a retreat in the Himalayas to recover from Ed Balls syndrome,” Bruno said. “But most of it looked like a jive.”
“I thought you were going to expire at the end!” Darcey added.
Has Ed had his last dance?
Find out in the Strictly Come Dancing results show on BBC1, Sunday, November 20, 7.15pm.