Robin Windsor observed the Strictly Come Dancing Halloween special from the studio audience this weekend (just as we did!) so he was able to really pay close attention to the remaining couples and their routines.
Scott Mills hung up his dancing shoes after losing the dance-off to Alison Hammond but in all honesty it was his time to leave the competition.
We caught up with Robin to talk about Scott’s exit, Mark Wright’s status as a dark horse and the incredible talent of his pro partner Kristina Rihanoff.
Scott Mills finally ended up in the bottom two at the weekend and he was sent home by the judges. Do you think it was the right decision?
Yeah I think it was the right time for Scott to go. He did what was for me was probably his best dance so it was good to go on a dance that was good rather than one he wished he could have done again and do it better. I think it was his time to go. Judy Murray is still holding on in there.
Judy’s performance was more about the production and the cute puppies than anything else. Do you think that helped keep her in the competition?
I think the production helped. Anton was extremely funny as well and that’s something people warm to. I was a bit disappointed because the week before she really let herself go but this week she went back to being really stiff again. If I was Anton I’d start tickling Judy while she’s dancing to make her laugh and smile a bit.
We felt torn about Alison Hammond and Aljaz Skorjanec being in the bottom two. Although technically it wasn’t one of the strongest this weekend there were other couples that messed up or forgot parts of their routine. Do you think she should have been in that position?
It could have been four couples in line for the bottom two this weekend. Scott, Alison, Judy and Steve – any of those could have been in the bottom two because you just don’t know how the judges are voting. Steve messed up a lot of choreography and I felt sorry for him because if he’d got it right it would have been a great dance. He made so many errors I thought he could be in trouble.
Simon Webbe also make a mistake in his routine during one of the tricks with Kristina but the public got behind him this week…
I think Simon, although he made a mistake, went out there and performed and it was a great Paso. I had a feeling he would be safe and the judges loved his dance. Yes he had a little bit of an error but he performed it very well.
Speaking of Kristina, she was incredible during the pro dance on Sunday night…
(Gasps) That pro number was one of the best I’ve seen in a long time. Kristina, Aljaz and Janette…it was magical. It was everything that it needed to be for Halloween. Kristina played it so perfectly and that kiss between Aljaz and Janette made everyone in the country go ‘awww’.
She’s a little pocket rocket Kristina. There doesn’t seem to be anything that she can’t do…
Kristina is an exceptional dancer. I’m a very lucky man to have her as my professional partner. I just love dancing with her. The power that comes off that woman when we dance is incredible.
Going back to the couples this weekend. Jake Wood was rather harshly criticised we felt…
I think it was a great dance. It wasn’t his best. He didn’t really have enough shaping for me for a Paso Doble but he definitely didn’t deserve the dressing down that he got from the judges. Perhaps in a way it was to make sure he didn’t get too complacent and at this stage in the competition they do start to get pickier about what they’re looking for. I’m sure he’s going to come back and blitz it next week.
Speaking of being picky, Caroline Flack and Pixie Lott were both criticised by the judges for being almost too perfect this weekend. What did you think?
It’s a tough one. With the Samba, you need a lot more rhythm and to let yourself go and I think Caroline was just too placed. It was placed beautifully; it just needed a little more oomph for a Samba. Saying that I absolutely loved it. The Samba is a tough dance for anyone to do and I thought Caroline was fabulous.
Pixie’s hair was the size of a small country. I don’t know how she danced with that on her head. She did a brilliant job and Trent was fabulous as the joker.
Trent was a very good joker…
He gave himself a role to play and he played it brilliantly.
Something seems to have happened to Mark Wright the past two weeks. He’s going from strength-to-strength and all of a sudden he’s just getting it absolutely right isn’t he?
Mark Wright is what I’m calling the Comeback King. He was in the bottom two a couple of weeks ago and he’s come back fighting. You can see that he wants it and not just that but he’s loving it. His cheeky little smile when he was doing that Jive was just infectious. He had great kicks and flicks and amazing bounce action in his legs. He matched Karen step for step at the speed they were going. I thought he was brilliant and he thoroughly deserves his place on the leaderboard. He’s now one to watch and is going to be pushing for that final.
We’ve talked a lot about dark horses this series and I think we’ve been backing the wrong ones. We think it could be Mark…
I think he was simmering under at the beginning but now the temperature’s rising he’s boiling and he’s going to be boiling right over. I can’t wait to see what he does next.
Frankie Bridge and Kevin Clifton topped the leaderboard again! That was an incredible routine wasn’t it?
When I first heard that Frankie and Kevin were dancing to Defying Gravity for a Tango I was a little hesitant because I thought ‘it isn’t really a Tango’. It was going to be either make or break for them. Kevin did such an amazing job with the choreography and Frankie exceled in the number. With the production it all came together on the night and for me it was one of the best performances of the series. It was just wow, wow, double wow and we got the first real 10 of the series. It was thoroughly deserved.
Frankie and Kevin have been taking a lot of risks this season and they seem to be paying off…
Kevin and Frankie are thinking outside of the box this year and it’s a real pleasure to watch. If you’re going to think outside of the box you’ve got to be very careful how you do it. Kevin’s excelling and I’m really enjoying what he’s doing with Frankie.
Sunetra Sarker and Brendan Cole opened the Halloween show with the Jive. What did you think of their performance?
Sunetra’s Jive wasn’t her best dance. It seemed a little too flowy for me. I think she’s going the Foxtrot this week and I can’t wait to see her because she’s at home in the ballroom and she is a ballroom dancer. She’s going to do a fantastic job.
Will Judy Murray finally land in the bottom two this weekend?
I really want to say Judy but I think that the public are going to decide otherwise. We’ve had another two completely different couples in the bottom two at the weekend and I’ve got a feeling it’s going to be a brand new two in bottom two this week.
Strictly Come Dancing 2014 continues at 6.30pm Saturday on BBC One. Watch Frankie & Kevin’s show-stopping Tango: