This week had a ‘round the world’ theme, which mostly seemed to involve the costume department having fun with fez hats. Starting the night with an Amsterdam-themed Viennese waltz (surely already an Austrian dance?) were Pixie and Trent, who whirled prettily around the floor, tulips in hand. It may not have done much to minimise cultural stereotypes, but it was joyful and elegant. Even Craig agreed that it didn’t disappoint, and it scored a fabulous 38.
Next up was Mark performing a Vegas-inspired salsa, with bags of energy. The presenter/reality TV star had obviously found it a challenge, but you have to admire his gusto. Bruno in particular was a fan of his pelvic thrusts, while Craig said his hip circles were ‘second to none’.
We then went to Rio via Sunetra’s rumba. It wasn’t her best dance, and Craig felt it lacked strength and steadiness. ‘Glass half-full’ Goodman however praised her timing. The rumba is always tough as it relies on total confidence, which perhaps the actress was lacking a little this week.
Caroline had been patiently waiting for her turn at the Charleston, and her efforts were rewarded with her highest ever score. Pascha had cleverly choreographed a Turkish market scene with some daring lifts and bags of attitude – well deserving of a 39.
Simon’s waltz was a romantic ode to Austria (ah – that’s why Pixie had to go to Holland) that had Len calling him the Comeback Kid. Bruno felt he had captured the essence of the dance, but nit-picker Craig wasn’t happy with his hands.
Frankie’s jive was full of good ol’ American joy – complete with surfboards and a long wig (for Frankie, not Kevin). Bruno loved its boisterous enthusiasm and even Craig was impressed at her ability to dance on a surfboard while wearing heels.
Finally, Jake and Janette brought a rather strange medley of Greek and Argentine cultures with a plate-smashing tango. We weren’t quite convinced at the fusion, and unfortunately there were some mistakes – but we’re still big fans of the Eastenders star. The judges felt it could have been special but was actually a bit messy…
But it wasn’t all bad news for Jake, as he managed to avoid the dance off. That dubious honour went to Mark and Sunetra, and ultimately the actress was the latest Casualty (sorry). We felt this was a fair decision – as did she – and while we’ll miss her beautiful ballroom technique, it has made the competition a little hotter – the winner is anyone’s guess!