Sunday, 25 January 2009

Well, I guess it would be nice...if you could skate

Co-ed week
Tx: 25th January 2009

Last week, ladies did skating! Jason was rude to people! Coleen whinged and cried! Bissix left, which more importantly means no more Andrei! This week! All 11 couples skate!


Phil and Holly welcome us to this week's show - Holly's looking very pregnant and lovely now, and is in a white dress with an odd black velvet belt. Phil, meanwhile, is wearing a waistcoat, and a tie pin. He promises us an action-packed show, and she reminds us of the rules of the competition.

We meet our skating stars - Ellery and Frankie; Jessica and Pavel; Donal and Florentine; Coleen and Stuart; Jeremy and Darya; Melinda and Fred; UGH RAY UGH and Maria; Michael and Mel; Zoe and Matt; Todd and Suzie; and Roxanne and Dan.

And then we meet Jayne Torvill and Christopher Dean. As predicted last week, Chris has put a stop to Jayne getting fancy ideas above her station, and has prohibited her skating today. Instead, she is standing by his side, where she should be if she's not in the kitchen baking him cake, and looking very pretty in a floor-length black dress. He moans about being jealous of Jayne skating, but he and they will be back next week.

Chris is excited about tonight; Jayne thinks this week has been overwhelming for some people. And it's time for the first required element of the series - a toe-step sequence. You all know what that is by now, I shan't explain it. Chris says it's about precision, and going from the gliding edge to the pick back to the gliding edge with speed. Jayne reveals that some people have struggled. Shocker. Phil says anything could happen. Oh, Phil, tempt fate, why don't you?

And here are the ice panel - Karen Barber, who apparently offers the skaters a shoulder to cry on, though I'd have thought that's more likely to be the other way round; Nicky Slater and his "sharp mind"; Jason and his meanness; Ruthie and her razzle-dazzle; and Lord of the Ice Robin Cousins. Holly giggles that that's her favourite introduction she has ever given to Robin. Heh. He tells us the contestants need to stop being much of a muchness, otherwise nobody will vote for them. Fair point.

Phil says Jason and Bissix argued after last week's show, and there was mascara and tears all over the place, and we all know where this is going - "I've never seen Jason so upset." Snort. [Please. Like Jason didn't botox his tear ducts closed for good years ago. - Steve]

Time for first couple Ellery and Frankie. Last week, Ruthie tried to get off with him. This week, he thinks it is like a new challenge. Mostly, I'd say, because it is. Frankie is loving his work and is generally encouraging in a rather sweet way. Ellery's rhythm is questionable [this would never happen on Strictly - Steve] - "a unique style," says Chris in an uncharacteristically tactful way. There's a walking section in the routine, and Frankie worries that he looks drunk.

They skate to Five Years Time, and it's not as bad as the VT makes out (surprisingly), though there's a stationary bit at the start with some armography (c Craig Revel Horwood) that's dreadful. Once the skating starts, it's fine, if a bit clumsy at time. Gubba tells us that Ellery's thighs are four inches thicker than Frankie's waist. Ouch. Scores - Karen 4.0, Nicky 3.5, Jason 2.5, Ruthie 3.0, Robin 3.0 for a total of 16.

Ellery really enjoyed it and thought it was thrilling and inspiring. Chris says there was a problem with coordination at the beginning, but he brings his own personality to it. Karen says that though the rhythm wasn't together, it was still there, and non-synchronicity is apparently a reason to give high marks. Jason says Ellery lacks style and grace, and the start of the routine was moronic, and not entertaining. Robin says the skating was no better than it was in the first week, and he was expecting better. So...Robin's marking relatively now? Ellery says he will work harder. Bless.


Last week, Jason told Jessica she needed more passion, but Jessica's husband, Mr Jessica Taylor, was impressed with her skating and would like her to win. Thanks for that, KP. This week, Pavel feels she still has some issues with expression. Mr Jessica Taylor is no longer in the country, as he's too busy playing cricket in St Kitts, but to help her with the emotion of this particular routine, she and Pavel are performing to a song that the Taylors had at their wedding.

It's DJ Sammy's version of Heaven. No, seriously. And they didn't have it AT their wedding; it's on their wedding DVD. I don't even know how that would work. Did they sell copies? Is DJ Sammy's video a hidden extra? [And when is it out on Blu-Ray? - Steve] It's a beautiful, lyrical programme, and the last move is nice, as Pavel drops to the ice, slides, and balances her on his knees. Scores - Karen 4.5, Nicky 4.0, Jason 4.0, Ruthie 3.5, Robin 4.5, for a total of 20.5. Jess hopes she's melted "Mr Frosty's heart", and Holly says she would have been in floods of tears if she had to skate to her wedding music. Then Phil asks the bizarre question - at her wedding, did she ever expect to skate to that music? Well, no, obviously. Jayne says it is a difficult routine with difficult lifts. Jason says she doesn't portray the emotion that she feels inside. Phil asks if it would have helped if Kevin had been her partner, and she says no, because he would fall over. Robin says the routine was lovely and the partnership is growing.

Donal has been packed off by Florentine to ballet lessons this week, except not proper ones, the ones his toddler daughters go to. Not sure exactly how much help they'll be. Chris has choreographed a slide along the judges' desk to begin the routine, and I suspect "using the judges' desk" may become the new "sitting on the steps" in terms of lazy, clunky choreography. They skate to Dock of the Bay, and the beginning section is just so jagged and ugly. The rest is all right. Scores - Karen 3.0, Nicky 4.0, Jason 2.0, Ruthie 3.0, Robin 3.0 for a total of 15.0.

Phil wishes Donal a happy birthday, and the rink is the strangest place he has ever celebrated. Chris says he's done the routine better in practice, but it is a pleasure working with Donal because he is so experimental. Ooo-er. Nicky says that there is lots of skating content in the routine, but he half-presents it, and must learn to give it large and "whap it out to me". Ruthie feels Donal falls down with performance, and is booed for her trouble.

Last week, Coleen cried and whined and really pissed me off. She has changed her mind this week, though, because getting through last week was better than any other award she has won. What other awards has Coleen won, please? Anyway, now she doesn't want to be a namby-pamby girl who says she can't do anything, and she wants to push herself more. In her mind, she's still young, and there's only so much she can talk about how old she is. Now, this is a Coleen I can get on board with.

They skate to Islands in the Stream, and the increased amount of fun that she's having is evident. There's a few tricky lifts in there, she's a bit wobbly on the spiral, but she looks happy, and that's much better to watch. Karen 3.5, Nicky 4.5, Jason 2.5, Ruthie 3.0, Robin 3.5 for a total of 17.0. Phil goes to hug her but she doesn't seem to notice. Coleen is delighted and says it feels great now. Her husband is crying like a baby. Jayne says she couldn't have skated it any better (Coleen, I mean; am fairly sure Jayne could). Nicky was relaxed and enjoyed the routine, and hails her achievement - so basically it's a 4.5 for effort and general patronising of the older lady. Jason says what she lacks in technique she makes up in performance, and she needs to improve her lines.

Jeremy has a sexy, difficult routine this week, according to Jayne. He thinks it's tricky and has many steps. We find out that his brain is like an Etch a Sketch, and he has to shake his head when his thoughts are getting overloaded. He falls down with vim while practising the toe-steps, and swears a lot.

He and Darya are in lime-green skating to Faith. Jeremy is singing along, and it's energetic, to say the least. The toe-steps are OK, but it's a bit meh. I like the circle thing he does at the end. Scores - Karen 4.0, Nicky 4.0, Jason 2.5, Ruthie 2.5, Robin 3.0, for a total of 16.0. Karen says sometimes he doesn't look like he attacks it enough, but this week she will give him the benefit of the doubt. Ruthie doesn't think he should sing along, and Jason concurs. She was underwhelmed. She is booed. Jeremy looks so angry.

Melinda and Fred survived last week's skate-off, and she is sad because either "we're not very good" (except Fred is pretty good, I'd say) or people don't like them. Chris thinks Melinda has had her confidence knocked this week and has a mental block at the moment. He tells her not to look at the big picture. Melinda's kids turn up at the rink, and they get to skate with Fred. She is full of enthusiasm again and is now going to skate for her children. Um, yay?

They're skating to Both Sides Now, and there's lots of ballet-esque moves in the routine, which look pretty and elegant. Her hair extensions on the other hand do not. Scores - Karen 4.0, Nicky 4.5, Jason 3.0, Ruthie 3.5, Robin 4.0 for a total of 19.0. Oh, Nicky, srsly? Your judging gets worse. That routine is no better than Coleen's? Melinda admires her beautiful routine and beautiful partner, and tells us that she has Vaseline on her teeth so her lips don't stick to them. Holly goes to Nicky and points out that he's giving out some very high scores tonight, and there's a pause, which is filled by Ruthie sotto voce: "Yeah, but where does he go?" Excellent point. Nicky praises the entirety of the routine, and then makes a comparison between her and Coleen. Ruthie doesn't know what Nicky will do from here, because there are more people to come, and Coleen and Melinda simply don't compare. She loves watching Melinda and her lines, and she looked like she enjoyed it.

Ray and Maria are on next. Cannot. Bear. It. My. Poor. Eyes. He and Maria bounce around backstage, he's in a shirt slashed to the navel, and I'm off to the kitchen. Sorry. Back in a bit.

Right, where was I? Gubba talks about Jimmy Tarbuck and "Silly Black", and the scores come in - 5.0s across the board for a total of 25.0. Ray says there is an element of danger every time he goes on the ice because he is so excitable and hyperactive LOLZOMG! Maria says it has been an up-and-down week, but is generally speechless. Chris fears that Ray is setting his bar too high, and then shoehorns in a self-aggrandising bit - "We know what that's like."

Then Ruthie takes on Nicky again - "How can you say that's only a point 5 better than Coleen?" Jason grins. Nicky says he would love to have given more marks, but he has had a directive from Robin, and he is putting Ray in first place, "as I knew I would". So - Robin has told Nicky not to give 6.0s, but he has not told him to stop marking relatively and generally like a twonk? Jason interrupts the bitching to talk about "our little ray of sunshine"; Karen says he is one of the best ones EVAH. Ugh. Ugh ugh.

Michael has been forced into the gym this week to tighten up his wobbly core. Everyone says "wobbly" too much and it begins to lose all meaning. There's a training montage a la Rocky, including a fabulous bit where Michael has to weight-lift Mel, and she throws Swiss balls at his face. ["My plastic surgeon doesn't want me doing any activity where balls fly at my nose." "There goes your social life." Sorry, carry on. - Steve] Their routine this week is fast - it's to Fascination. They're quick across the ice, and loving Mel's hot-pants outfit. He does still look shaky when he has to do anything by himself. Scores - Karen 3.5, Nicky 3.5, Jason 3.0, Ruthie 3.5 and Robin 3.5 for a total of 17.0.

Phil tells us that Michael took a tumble in the dress rehearsal, and Mel interrupts to say, "WE took a tumble", which could be interpreted either as solidarity or a dig. Everyone says "wobbly" some more. Phil asks if his core is stiffer now. Ha. Jayne thinks Michael did well, because she's nice like that. Jason says Michael's hands are still fused together and tight with tension, and points out that he's had much more training than all the others. Robin says that if routines get faster, he needs to think faster rather than push his body faster. Michael says that Jason is right and he has had more opportunity, though his previous training hasn't proved an advantage, but he will try hard and get better.

Zoe was happy that she and Matt got nice comments last week. Matt is pleased that they are up near the top, but now Zoe is feeling the pressure - they only have ONE WEEK to learn their new routines, and she is not quick to pick things up. In the dress rehearsal, she crashes to the ground, and then she weeps. Matt is encouraging and reassuring.

Looks like her confidence is knocked, though; they're dancing to Rise (beginning with some admirably literal choreography). As Zoe skates past the judges' panel, she stumbles slightly, and a panicking Head Judge Robin Cousins waves his hands, in an effort to keep her upright, which is entirely adorable, and entirely pointless. [I did think that was some very dignified flailing on Zoe's part. That's not easy to pull off. - Steve] Scores - Karen 3.0, Nicky 3.0, Jason 3.5, Ruthie 4.0 and Robin 3.0 for a total of 16.5. Phil admires the way she recovered from the trip. She says it's been a tough week for everyone, and she is having a wonderful time, la la la. Chris says Zoe lives every moment and challenges herself. Ruthie did not care about the stumble, and recommends that Zoe dig deep and believe. Right. Karen says nerves can undo hard work. RIGHT.

Last week, Todd was fucking dreadful, but he got the sympathy vote. This week, he is still fucking dreadful, and he manages to semi-kneecap Suzie. He too is skating for his children, who mock him roundly for his ineptitude.

They're skating to Help (Suzie's outfit is grotesque, by the way). Everyone's all "COME ON, TODD!" His facial expressions are dreadful for an actor, and he misses a couple of steps at the start, so he's standing there waiting for Suzie to take his hands for a good couple of seconds. His spiral is abysmal. And then Todd is supposed to skate by himself, but loses his footing and all ability whatsoever and just slides off down the tunnel. Poor Suzie is just carrying on with the routine regardless. He reappears at the end, and is met with a rapturous reception. Gubba tells us that something along those lines was choreographed into the routine, but not quite to that extent. [Phillip Schofield said later on his official website that Todd had to be picked up by a member of the crew and pushed back out. - Steve] What, not to the extent that he nearly fell on his arse and didn't come back out when he was supposed to? Gubba is practically incoherent (more so than usual) with laughter. Scores - Karen 2.0, Nicky 2.5, Jason 1.0, Ruthie 2.0, Robin 2.0 for a total of 9.5.

It is officially Phil's favourite moment ever on Dancing on Ice. Todd was worried that he wouldn't come back out of the tunnel, but he loved it. Chris says that Todd added to the choreography he was given. Robin says none of us will forget that in a hurry, and it was much better than a fortnight ago, even if it was entertaining for all the wrong reasons. Jason is worried that Todd will leave the competition in a body bag, and hopes he is being paid a lot of money.

Finally, Roxy and Dan. Last week, she was upset that Jason didn't like her sexy face. This week they are doing an upside-down lift which threatens to blind Dan. "Your SKATE is ON MY FACE!" he tells her. They're skating to Genie in a Bottle, and when it comes to the lift, Dan grabs her leg and pushes the blade far away from his face. Ha. Gubba calls her "little miss sexy". Ew. Scores - Karen 4.0, Nicky 4.0, Jason 3.0, Ruthie 3.0 and Robin 4.0 for a total of 18.0.

Roxy is pleased to do better than last week, even though she didn't have very long to learn the routine (though presumably the same length of time as everyone else). Dan is pleased to still have his eyes, and says he trusts Roxy. Chris has a lot of fun with Roxy, apparently. EW. Jason felt she dipped in and out of the performance, and offers advice on Egyptian arm choreography. Karen thinks she has improved a lot this week.

And that's the last one in this week's Dancing on Ice epic. Recap - Ellery being drunk; Jess reminiscing about her wedding; Donal doing ballet; Coleen having fun and not whinging; Jeremy having faith; Melinda doing it for the kids; UGH RAY UGH; Michael and his wobbly core; Zoe not falling thanks to the power of Head Judge Robin's hands; Todd skating off and failing to reappear; Roxy not blinding Dan.

The lines are now open! Vote, bitches!

Results show

Earlier! 11 couples danced ON ICE for our votes, and now one must piss off and never darken a rink again!

Phil welcomes us back, and the phone lines close. Time for a recap - Ellery thought he did quite well, Frankie thought Jason was too harsh; Jess finds it difficult to put emotion in her face; Donal was nervous, and would be happier in a maximum-security prison, and I'm sure Florentine would be happier if he were there too; Coleen's kids are living the dream, and she wants to do it for them, and she is not old, she is 43 (except nobody called her old, except herself, if I recall correctly); Jeremy threw a tantrum because Ruthie criticised him; Melinda's confidence is back up again and she hopes not to be in the skate-off; Ray is proud, like, and "couldn't do nothing without Maria" (well, duh); Michael is ready to push the boat out; Zoe likes getting lovely comments; Todd reveals EXCLUSIVELY that he slipped; Dan is relieved that he hasn't got a permanent wink, courtesy of Roxy.

Holly gets final comments from the judges. Karen thinks Ray and Melinda did well with the required element; Robin thinks the girls rocked it tonight, and Coleen and Melinda were the best ones (apart from ugh Ray ugh).

Phil has got the results, and touches his ear to prove it. The couples through to next week are - Melinda and Fred; Ray and Maria; Zoe and Matt; Jessica and Pavel; Roxanne and Daniel; Donal and Florentine; Coleen and Stuart (that's all the girls safe, if you're keeping count); Michael and Mel; and obviously the last couple who are definitely safe will be revealed right after the break.


Back after the break, and the final safe couple are - Todd and Suzie! Jeremy and Darya skate away and Phil tells them off because they have left the ice too early, and they skulk back shamefacedly. Holly asks what they should do - Ellery needs to be more rhythmic, and Jeremy needs to give a good personal performance and not sing along.

Anyway, everyone skates. Ellery looks like he's having more fun and is caught up in the music a bit more. At the end of the routine, Frankie tells Phil that she's always proud of Ellery. Aw. Jeremy has his rabbit-in-headlights face on again, and he stumbles a couple of times, and just generally looks knackered. He admits to Phil that he had a few wobbles, possibly because he used up everything he had last time. And then he says rather ungraciously, "I didn't sing along this time!" Jayne says he put everything into it, and that's all we can ask of him.

Time for the judges' verdict. Karen saves Ellery; Nicky saves Ellery; Jason saves Ellery; Ruthie saves Ellery; and Robin completes the clean sweep. Jeremy looks so pissed off, it's really quite amusing. Montage of their highlights to the tune of Macho Man (snigger) - blushing at each other when they met, falling over, their week 1 performance. Back rinkside, Jeremy tells us, "Despite what the judges said, that earlier skate was the most fun I have ever had," and then he says that Ellery deserved to win because he was best. Everyone congratulates each other and will miss each other, and then Phil takes Jeremy and Darya's bouquets from them so they can do their lap of honour. And then he thrusts the flowers at Holly, who is pregnant and surely should not be doing that kind of menial carrying work.

So we lose Jeremy without ever really getting the chance to look at his chest, even though they force us to see Ray's pecs every week. It's a cruel, cruel world. Join Steve next week!


ht said...

"...he thrusts the flowers at Holly" and also, it seemed to us, then did the rest of the out link with his hand resting on her backside, because she has her hands full and can't do anything about it except give hi a slight sideways look. (Seriously. Watch the last minute or so again and tell me you can't see it)
We think he may have been dared to do so by someone in the gallery.

Carrie said...

Oooh, I did notice that, I was wondering if she was likely to topple over if she'd lost her balance on her heels what with her centre of gravity being disturbed.