Opening show of the series, first eight celebrities
Tx 9th January 2010
Happy New Year! And of course welcome to the new series of Dancing on Ice, which necessitates a new series of Bitching on Ice. We're back every week to tell you what's going on, what's not going on, who's wearing horrible costumes, who's a tosser, who hates their partner, and who we've taken irrational dislikes to (or perfectly rational dislikes, as we demonstrated with Gary Lucy and Ray Quinn and Chris Fountain).
Know who's NOT back every week? Two-fifths of the judging panel. No weepy Karen Barber this year; and NO NICKY SLATER. In one way I am (obviously) delighted about this, and in another I am veritably crushed. After all, how will I remember the name of the show? Who will award marks relative to previous performances? Who will recite doggerel poetry? Sad times, my friends, sad times. (Still, don't forget about his crazy website, which is always a source of fine entertainment. And I can exclusively reveal that the Ghost Of Nicky Slater will be joining us later!) This means we are lumbered with Bunton and Jason, with Sir Robin of Cousins the only sensible expert judge there. [Seriously. I don't even know why they bother having a judging panel. They might as well have got rid of Robin as well and put Christine Bleakley on there or something. Apparently knowledge of skating is a disadvantage to being a judge on this show. - Steve]
He is also the only chap worth crushing on this year (if you're me, anyway; I know Steve still has a penchant for Lovely Matt), because we have LOST Andrei and Pavel. Honestly. No Andrei OR Pavel. It's like they don't even WANT me to watch. Anyway, they seem to have been replaced by a proliferation of slender lean continental boys, which is of no interest to me whatsoever. Still, the DoI publicity shots may be deceiving - maybe they'll look better in action. Let's hope so, eh?
So you probably know who this year's contestants are, and the confusing structure of the first few weeks (split into two pools with most of the proper famous people going this week, then the three who receive fewest public votes will face the skate-off, with the two least popular celebrities going). Sounds fun, I'm sure you'll agree. So let's get going!
Tony Gubba tells us that Torvill and Dean have been whipping the stars into shape, and for a minute I'm hoping for a pro routine to Whipped Into Shape from Legally Blonde, complete with skipping ropes, but maybe they'll save that until props week. Fingers crossed. Craig McLachlan crosses himself despite not being a religious man. Some people talk but I don't know who they are. Dominic Cork says he is out of his comfort zone (drink!); Angela Rippon says she shouldn't be written off because she's over 60. Vanilla Ice assures us that his dancing skills are good, and reveals some horrible tattoos. Denise Welch reckons she may have a breakdown. Not if Katona gets there first! Nadia Sawalha reckons the pressure is on (drink!). Craig McLachlan is looking pretty nice for a man of his age. I wish Peter O'Brien was on this too. [Ooh, yes please. Maybe next year? Although I think Peter O'Brien still gets fairly regular acting work, so probably not. - Steve] Could do with some inter-Ramsay family rivalry. There's a storyline you didn't think of, producers. Give me a call next year.
OK, so we're in the rink and Jayne and Chris are dressed in Cheryl Cole's military outfit for that bloody awful single she had [you'll need to be more specific - Steve], skating round to something that appears to be from West End show Stomp, and then merges into Let's Get It Started. They're joined by the pros, who have very few clothes on, and Matt's hair looks weird. It always makes me laugh when Jayne and Chris do their modern street-dancing moves. I think I may love Sean, who is Angela Rippon's partner. He couldn't look less like the rest of these little boy pros with their lovely Bieber hair if he tried; he is tall and muscular and bulky - a Real Man. Hooray for Torvill and Dean and the pros!
And here are Phil and Holly. She really does look good pregnant. He mocks her for having nasal hair visible in HD; she mocks him for having a facelift. They remind us of the rules - eight couples skate tonight, only six go through to the competition proper. And here are our couples - tabloid fodder Kerry Katona and Dan; ex-footballer and Jade Goody's ex Jeff Brazier and Isabelle; Hollyoaks' Jennifer Metcalfe and Sylvain; actor Sam Attwater (should I know him?) [He was in EastEnders fairly briefly - he came, he knocked up Lucy Beale, he left - Steve] and Brianne; TV legend Angela Rippon (hooray!) and Sean; cricketer Dominic Cork and Alexandra; presenter and actress Nadia Sawalha and Mark; star of stage and screen Craig McLachlan (with his belly button on show) and Maria; nonentity criminal driver Chloe Madeley and Michael; soldier Johnson Beharry and Jodeyne (who try and fail to do some kind of spin); celebrity-shagger Elen Rives [be fair - she was at least MARRIED to him - Steve] [She wasn't! - Carrie] and Lukas; Corrie's Steven Arnold and Nina (dressed for the circus); children's TV's Laura Hamilton, who isn't famous, and Colin; Comedy Dave, who isn't famous, and Frankie (who now officially has only one name because she's THAT FAMOUS); Loose Woman Denise Welch and Lovely Matt; and international one-hit wonder Vanilla Ice and Katie. Also, Torvill and Dean are involved in the show too. Not sure if you know that. Gubba reminds us anyway.
And then we get a lovely montage of lovely Head Judge Robin Cousins, who is looking FINE. Has he lost weight? Followed by Jason and Bunton, like anyone cares about either of them. Seriously, if they wanted to pare down the panel this year, they could've just got Robin back by himself. He's the only one any of us cares about, surely? Anyway, Bunton is wearing a net curtain, and Robin and Jason are lifting their heads at an angle to avoid double-chins. Bless 'em. [Don't forget me! - The Ghost Of Nicky Slater]
'Course, it's time for a break now, isn't it? /rushes to Twitter to tell everyone she misses Andrei WHICH SHE DOES
Bit of Holly/Phil/Jayne/Chris chatting about the format this week. The only thing of note is that Jayne tips Laura (who isn't famous), Jeff and Vanilla Ice tonight. And then we learn that the judges are scoring the skaters out of ten tonight, but it's only for guidance - it's all down to the public vote.
Right, some skating now, yes? Steven Arnold first. Chris says they gave everyone a basic skating test, and there's a little report card that they're gleefully filling in with a "C-". And here is Nina, who speaks English with a heavy Russian accent, obviously, which makes for a surprisingly amusing cue-card reading episode. [Also, she looks enough like Frankie Onename that we now have a spare if we ever lose her. Result! - Steve] Anyway, they send Steven off to the gym for being fat and lazy, and Nina is happy with his progress. They've got a comedy routine to skate tonight, which is why they have comedy hats and trousers. And tops, actually. And it's to House Of Fun. Complete with Madness walking ON ICE, which is done quite well, and some literal choreography (to "no no no no miss, you misunderstood"). Gubba claims their costumes have more "colour variation than a traffic light"; traffic lights have three colours, as do these costumes, so Gubba hasn't got any better. Scores - Jason 2, Robin 3 and Emma 2 for a total of 7 out of 30. Holly takes Robin to task and then Robin reveals that he has taken on Nicky's mantle of marking relatively - "you skated better than that in the dress rehearsal." Oh, Robin! [I fail to see the problem here. - The Ghost Of Nicky Slater] Jason says that Steven has to be the "male presence in this partnership", which is offensive to Nina. Emma urges him to become more relaxed. Steven looks a tad upset.
Now, ANGELA RIPPON and Real Man Sean. She informs us that over-60s are not all in rocking chairs and knitting. She falls over incredibly elegantly. She is quite SLOW OVER THE ICE, and Chris fears her wobbliness. Her report card is a C+. She gets frustrated with herself and keeps shouting, "Knickers!" in a cute boarding-school way, and Sean seems worried that she's going to wear herself out. Bless. They're skating to At Last, and yes, it's still SLOW OVER THE ICE, but it's a sweet routine, and as you'd expect, Angela's lines are nice when she's not wobbling. At the end, Sean pats her hair, which might be patronising or adorable, I'm not quite sure yet. Scores - Jason 3, Robin 5, Emma 3 for a total of 11. Angela tells Phil about all the old people who skate; I'm momentarily distracted by the vision of Sean's nipple through his white satin shirt. Emma says it was sweet and Angela has nice legs. Robin admires the serenity of the performance, but he is concerned that her attention to detail will stop her from enjoying it, and then tells her that she should not DANCE ON ICE, but should SKATE ON ICE. Angela says that the show is called DANCING ON ICE. [Sob. It's like they don't even need me any more. - The Ghost Of Nicky Slater] Jason talks as well despite nobody asking him. Head Coach Karen Barber is wheeled on to tell Jason he's a bitch and Angela that she's great. So we've got an ex-judge doing judging but without being able to award any marks? Good times!
Oh, Laura Hamilton is skating next. Perhaps we can learn who she is. She seems to be on Nick Jr and sing annoying songs. She is FAST OVER THE ICE, and gets a B+. Colin, her partner, looks like he might be quite attractive when he grows up. They have a mishap in training where she wobbles and gets her toepick and blade in her thigh, taking out a chunk of muscle. Colin strokes her hair while the paramedics look at the injury. Cute. I do enjoy when the partners like each other. You never saw Mumba stroking Pavel's hair when she nearly sliced off his testicles. Now, they're skating to My Life Would Suck Without You, and as a children's TV presenter, she's got the cheesy beam off pat, so that's good. She does a clumsy splits, and Colin does a pointless backflip, channeling the spirit of Matt Baker. It's all quick and they're definitely having fun. Scores - Jason 4, Robin 6, Emma 6 for a total of 16. Laura confesses that her costume "pinged". Colin was worried that she'd panic when she saw the VT of her leg being mutilated. Chris says that Laura is like Lewis Hamilton ON ICE. Robin suggests that she pull back on the adrenaline and let Colin lead her, but he admires the attack. Brilliantly he then says, "They might not know who you are," which is FACT. ["Might"? - Steve] Bunton tells Laura to enjoy being led around by "that lovely man there". Jason is a bitch and Chris and Jayne pull epic faces.
Next, Johnson Beharry and Jodeyne, and there is a horribly embarrassing moment when they get the wrong tape in. We're reminded that Johnson is the only living, serving VC holder; his platoon holder talks about the time that an injured Johnson saved his life and the lives of a score of others. He incurred head injuries so even being able to talk is a blessing, let alone skate. He says that he's from Grenada so the only time he has ever seen ice is when he puts it in his drink. HA! They work hard; Johnson isn't a natural, but as you'd expect he's incredibly determined. He says that he wants to show other injured soldiers they can still do things. And seriously, I can't mock him. As they prepare to skate to Wishing On A Star, a random audience member shouts, "You're a hero!", because obviously he and we didn't know that previously, as a VC is NOTHING, and only the approval of Dancing on Ice audience members really instills a sense of self-worth. The routine is a little hesitant, but some of the technique looks pretty good, and there are some good lifts too. Scores - Jason 2, Robin 5, Emma 4 for a total of 11. Johnson tells Phil that he couldn't even STAND ON ICE at the start. Maybe that'll be a new spin-off show. [Maybe there's a job for me on that show? - The Ghost Of Nicky Slater] Jodeyne says Johnson is an inspiration and is conquering huge obstacles every day. Robin says Johnson's blades move like an ice-skater, and he could skate the routine without Jodeyne, because he was leading her well. He suggests that he should start trying to present some warmth to the audience. Bunton says some things. Jason is a bitch. Karen pulls another epic face and tells Jason that his marks are ridiculous, and then gets to give her thoughts. Seriously, why is she not a judge this series? She'd be in her element without Nicky. [That Jason is still a judge and Karen is not is a CRIME AGAINST THE UNIVERSE. - Steve]
Time for a look forward to next week, when the other eight "celebrities" will perform. Craig McLachlan is excited about the costumes and then says "Blade McLachlan", which doesn't really make that much sense. Jennifer Metcalfe wants to know if Sylvain is straight and single. Dominic Cork tells us he's a SPORTSMAN. That'll do you no good on this show, Corky, you should've gone to the other channel. Denise Welch talks about giving up fags and booze. A couple of non-famous people talk a bit. Elen Rives promises us that she can dance because she is Spanish. And it's genetic? Sam Attwater talks about going ice-skating to pull girls as a teenager. Nice.
Back at the rink, and Craig McLachlan says that his middle name is "sequins"; Dominic says that it is ON ICE and DANCING; all the men are towering over Phil on their blades; Chloe says her parents will be there next week, which I'm sure we're all thrilled about.
Nadia next. She is bad at skating and gets a D on her report card. She's partnered with Mark, who's going to play the nationalist card a la Aggie Mackenzie, for he is FROM SCOTLAND. She frets when she's told she has to skate in the first show, and confesses that she is not the greatest skater in the world, as if we hadn't noticed that. She stumbles on her way out on to the rink, which is a rather inauspicious start. They're skating to Proud Mary, and the opening section, where they're leaning against each other, just looks a bit like they're pissed in a pub at closing time. Mark pushes her around a bit. On the plus side, Nadia's dress is lovely - navy blue, silver sparkles, assymmetric skirt. And then it's over and...I'm not sure I saw her do any skating. Maybe I missed it. Straight 3s for a total of 9. Nadia is delighted, and says that nobody has any idea how slippery the ice is. Um, I think we probably do. ON ICE. She does leaping around when Chris says her mark on her report card has gone up to a B. Nadia shouts at Jason that she LOVES him for such a nice mark. He says that he thought it was going to be exciting, but it was like her legs were anaesthetised when she wasn't with Mark. Karen is hiding a smile. Bunton agrees with Holly that Nadia was sexy. Nadia wants to know if the show can be changed to DANCING ON A TABLE TOP DOWN THE PUB. Heh. [Coming to ITV2 this spring! - Steve]
Now it's Kerry Katona and Dan! She's claiming to be a TV personality now, and that she wants to make her children proud! (Drink! and also /puts her on the blacklist.) C- on the report card. She seems to be surprised that she gets partnered with Dan, despite the fact that she is from The North and partnering ladies from The North is his job. Kerry cries in rehearsal and in the rink. Everyone concurs that this is a bad idea. They're skating to Make You Feel My Love WHICH I AM SICK OF, and Kerry does look as if she's going to cry, but the intensity kind of works with the routine, which is quite elegant and gentle. Scores - Jason 4, Robin 5 and Emma 5 for a total of 14. Kerry would prefer a witchetty grub to skating, apparently, and then shouts out to her CHILDREN who are IN THE AUDIENCE (drink! and also /puts her on the blacklist some more). Robin comments on the intensity; Karen is crying (drink!); Jason says the dress rehearsal was a disaster, but this performance was controlled. And then in case we didn't know that Kerry has children, we see a glimpse of the McFaddenspawn. DANGER!
Jeff Brazier next, and he too wants to make his children proud. I have conflicting feelings about Jeff Brazier; I always admired the way he and his ex managed to share custody of the kids and not sell each other down the river too much, but on the other hand I find him INCREDIBLY ANNOYING. He skates a bit like Bambi at first, and falls over a lot. He is partnered with Isabelle, who he's hoping isn't "too keen". Right, because professional sportspeople are often not that keen on a) their jobs and b) winning stuff. In the dress rehearsal he's still cocking the routine up. What will happen? Well, I'm sure you won't be surprised to learn that his children are in the audience and waving a banner. Seriously, Brazier, did you and Katona learn NOTHING from the errors of Gary Lucy? He messes up getting up from the knee slide again, as he has all through rehearsal, which puts him off a bit for the next section, but he seems to have pace across the rink [surely you mean ON ICE? - The Ghost Of Nicky Slater], and he lifts teeny tiny Isabelle well. Though to be fair I think I could probably lift her. Scores - Jason 3, Robin 4 and Emma 4 for a total of 11. Jeff and Phil lie that the knee slide went well. Isabelle is proud of Jeff, of course, and he says that his performance was dedicated to all the men who cling to the bars along the rink when they are trying to skate. Bunton wants Jeff to commit more to the dancing, but she fancies him so it's all OK. Robin also has a soft spot for Jeff but only based on skating ability, lest there be any confusion. Jason says there's not enough power in his execution of the choreography. Karen disagrees and then she and Jason have a spat. This is the most pointless de-judge of all time. Although I'm thinking that as judges' scores don't count for the first fortnight, maybe they'll do an X-Factor style RETURN OF DEPOSED JUDGE for when the actual competition starts?
Time for Vanilla ICE ON ICE! He doesn't want to look like a jackass. I'd venture it's about 20 years too late for that. Chris calls Vanilla Ice "Rob", as does Phil's v/o. I will not be doing this. He meets his partner Katie Stainsby, who...looks like Lightning off Gladiators. They're rehearse in Miami; at least, they do when Vanilla Ice is not answering his phone or buying cars on eBay. Eventually Katie tapes up his mouth and they make better progress. They're skating to Word Up, and I genuinely think this may be one of my favourite things I have ever seen on this show. Vanilla Ice is trying to be all metal and street, and putting in some really impressive lifts, but nodding his head like the Churchill dog. Still, this is a strong routine. Well done, Vanilla Ice ON ICE! Gubba's commentary invokes Ann Summers. No more needs to be said. Scores - Jason 5, Robin 5, Emma 5 for a total of 15. Hooray! Vanilla Ice tells us that it was awesome; Katie is proud of him, of course; Jayne calls him "Rob" again and says how well he did to get those lifts in; Chris tries to do ice-cream-related gags and fails. Jason says the routine played to his strengths and the partnering was good, but wonders how he will do with the more lyrical, romantic routines. Hang on, so is Jason marking him down on ROUTINES THAT HAVE NOT YET BEEN PERFORMED? [Again, I fail to see the problem here. - The Ghost Of Nicky Slater] Emma smacks Jason down. Robin promises us that Vanilla Ice will be around for some weeks to come. And then Phil tells us to vote for Vanilla Ice if we want to see "how much fun we can have with his name". (On ice.)
We then see a pointless judges' leaderboard, which has no bearing on the scores this week. So let's crash on then with a recap. What have we learnt so far? Steven had comedy hats; Angela has nice legs (and a Real Man partner); Laura is good at skating but not famous (do you think she is more or less famous than Emily Atack? I'd say less. Emily did at least have a famous mum) [More famous, definitely - I might not have known the name Emily Atack, but at least I knew who she was when I saw her face. Laura's still a blur to me. - Steve]; Johnson is a hero; Nadia and Mark are pissed and at the pub as I type; Kerry has children and didn't cry; Jeff has children and can't stand up from a knee slide; Vanilla Ice was ON ICE and can do lifts; Karen's de-judging was pointless; this series I will be mostly crushing on Robin.
That's it for now! You've got an hour to vote!
OK, we're back! Phil and Holly welcome us back, and inform us that the lines are now closed. But we're not going to the three-person skate-off yet - we need a recap! Steven says he wasn't that nervous; Angela doesn't know what was safe about her routine because it was VERY DANGEROUS INDEED; Laura is desperate to qualify; Johnson promises he has much more to give; Nadia doesn't think she'll stay in (going down the Coleen Nolan route, evidently); Kerry wants to make her children proud and not embarrass them, because she's done enough of that; Jeff agrees with Jason that he was a bit sloppy; Vanilla Ice ON ICE does not want to leave the ICE because it is such an awesome experience.
So that's this week's mob. Phil asks next week's lot what they think. Denise feels sick at the thought of losing two couples this week, and informs us that Coleen is at home with a takeaway and her fags. Sam is feeling confident. Elen is not. But it's OK, because she has a new boyfriend, Peter Andre, who is coincidentally with the same management company as her! The man from the radio doesn't want Chris Moyles to come to the rink. I think we all share that wish.
Then over to the judges, who all call Vanilla Ice "Vanilla" now, which is strangely brilliant. [NO ICE. - The Ghost Of Nicky Slater, Who Occasionally Enjoys Anagrams] Holly mocks Jason a bit for being a miserable old bastard and a poor man's Craig Revel Horwood. Emma thinks there are some great people in the competition. Thanks, Bunton!
Time for some more ads? Oh yes indeed.
Phil assures us that the celebrities have skated their hearts out. Then he touches his ear, and we know what that means - some results! The couples going through to the competition proper - Vanilla Ice and Katie; Johnson and Jodeyne; Jeff and Isabelle (meanwhile, Vanilla Ice and Johnson are doing manly hugging at the side of the rink); Steven and Nina; and Kerry and Daniel. That leaves Angela and Sean, Laura and Colin and Nadia and Mark in the skate-off. Jayne and Chris implore us to vote for the best skater, and Holly feigns surprise that the woman nobody has heard of is in the bottom three.
Right, the skate-offs. They've also introduced Strictlyesque VTs where the contestants talk about not wanting to leave yet. Angela and Sean go first and she tells Phil afterwards that she is devastated to be in the bottom three, and Sean adds that Angela lives to inspire, and inspires to live, or something. Laura and Colin next; she utterly botches the start (perhaps on purpose to make herself more accessible?), and then she tells Phil that it's been a wonderful experience (being on television viewed by more than half-a-dozen under-fives?). Nadia and Mark go last, and they're HILARIOUS; she screeched, "I LOVED THAT!" at the end. Mark says the pressure is off now, and she scolds him: "Well, not REALLY, Mark, we're about to go home." However, she does concede that she would give her house to stay, which seems a bit excessive. More comments from Karen, and then the phonelines close once more...which means time for more ads!
And we're back again. Straight to the result - the sixth couple to progress...Laura and Colin. Rightly so. Poor Angela and Real Man Sean, and poor drunk Nadia and Mark. Farewell to them. [Boo. I liked Angela, and I think we were robbed of a really good comedy contestant in Nadia. Instead, we'll probably get stuck with "Comedy" Dave for weeks. YAWN. - Steve]
And kudos to the VT editor who managed to get a clip of McLachlan saying, "I'm an Aussie, I'm built for winning," in the preview for next week. Bit of Ashes gloating, much? Join us next Sunday for more ridiculous lack-of-judging and viewer-voting! Bye!