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Strictly Come Dancing 2018 week 4 recap

All eyes were on one couple tonight following their kissing scandal.

Seann Walsh and Katya Jones
Credit: BBC

Strictly Come Dancing 2018 has been rocked with a scandal this past week after video footage and photos emerged of professional dancer Katya Jones and her celebrity partner Seann Walsh kissing.

While Strictly hook-ups are no new thing, it was shocking because Katya is married to fellow pro Neil Jones and Seann was in a long-term relationship (not any more). The two issued apologies once the photos surfaced and did a very awkward on-air apology during It Takes Two on Thursday night.

The couple were due to dance the Rumba tonight but their routine was been changed to a Charleston. It doesn’t really matter what they danced, all eyes were on them any way.

Other than scandal, Lee Ryan left the competition last week after landing in the dance-off again. Tonight the remaining 13 couples danced again to keep their place in the competition.

Find out how everyone got on…

Joe Sugg and Dianne Buswell

YouTube star Joe Sugg came in for some criticism last week but he was determined to show the judges he had what it takes with his Cha Cha tonight. Dianne admitted during training that Joe’s hips were causing problems so she took him to see Pasha Kovalev for some advice.

The dance: Oh poor Joe. That really wasn’t his dance. He looked like he was concentrating so hard and there were a fair amount of timing issues. Joe gave it a good shot but it’s definitely not his best dance so far on the series.

The comments: Shirley told Joe that he needs a bit more work on his hips but complimented his musicality. Bruno called it ‘quirky, individual, charming’ but told Joe to be careful as he gets too angular sometimes. Craig said he thought it was ‘overplaced’ and ‘flat-footed’ but told Joe he surprised him. Darcey commended Joe’s attitude and his arm placement telling Dianne she’d worked wonders.

The score: 5, 7, 7, 7 – 26 out of 40

Vick Hope and Graziano Di Prima

Quickstep was the dance on the cards for Vick and Graziano tonight and Vick wasn’t feeling very confident about it. During the week Graziano took Vick boating to get into the theme of their dance. Vick admitted she’d overcome her fear of Latin dancing now she was a few weeks into the competition but tonight she was back in Ballroom.

The dance: It looked like there was a mistake toward the beginning of the routine to me. They recovered well from it and Vick is definitely improving week-on-week. She’s still got further to go until she starts challenging the top of the leaderboard.

The comments: Bruno said it was ‘sweet, light, fluffy’ and compared it to candyfloss before telling Vick she’s improved both her dancing and expression. Craig said the improvement has been vast and told Vick she’d come to life. Darcey told Vick there was a little too much bounce but commended the work on her frame. Shirley agreed that Vick has made huge improvements since week 1.

The score: 7, 7, 7, 8 – 29 out of 40

Danny John-Jules and Amy Dowden

Last weekend Danny found himself in the middle of the leaderboard but this week he had his eye on getting closer to the top. The judges didn’t love Danny’s performance but this weekend he was feeling a little more optimistic about doing the Viennese Waltz.

The dance: Danny and Amy’s routine was gorgeous tonight and so beautifully danced. They have great chemistry and Danny is such a strong, and sophisticated, dancer. Ballroom really suits him.

The comments: Craig complained that Danny had over-expressive hands and told him he was a bit skippy. Darcey told Danny the start of the routine was divine and said he had one of the best postures in the competition. Shirley said that Danny wasn’t consistent all the way through but told him it was a step in the right direction. Bruno said Danny filled the space and joked about how he covered his mistake.

The score: 6, 7, 7, 7 – 27 out of 40

Faye Tozer and Giovanni Pernice

Steps singer Faye did very well last week picking up four 9s for her performance. During training Steps was finding the Rumba routine tough to grasp and admitted she was getting very frustrated. Faye’s band-mate Claire Richards popped into training and cried as she watched them practice.

The dance: What a beautiful Rumba. Faye is without a doubt one of the best dancers this year and she’s consistent. There was a lot of emotion during that Rumba and a little kiss too! Amazing!

The comments: Darcey told Faye she has a wonderful ability to express her feelings but warned her to be careful with her shoulders. Shirley told Giovanni that he found a good balance with the choreography but said she didn’t believe the story between him and Faye. Bruno said he felt it and compared Faye to a goddess saying she gave herself to her man. Craig agreed with Shirley and said he missed the connectivity between Faye and Giovanni.

The score: 7, 7, 7, 8 – 29 out of 40

Katie Piper and Gorka Marquez

Craig told Katie that she’d made a breakthrough with her Foxtrot last week. This week Katie and Gorka were dancing a Jive but Katie’s busy schedule meant they had to squeeze in training wherever and whenever they could. Gorka visited a burns victim centre that Katie worked with to meet some of the patients there.

The dance: Katie is really growing in confidence. It shows through the improvement in her dancing and she’s got a very good partner in Gorka. The routine was cute and fun with some lovely moments.

The comments: Shirley said Katie had a lot more content in her routine this week but told her to continue working on her timing. Bruno said Katie and Gorka had fun together but agreed with Shirley that Katie needs to work on her timing. Craig complained that the dance was stompy with poor timing. Darcey said she found the routine endearing and that she liked the way they bounced off each other.

The score: 3, 5, 5, 5 – 18 out of 40

Charles Venn and Karen Clifton

Actor Charles ended up in the dance-off last weekend but he beat Lee Ryan to stay in the competition. Tonight Charles and Karen danced a Salsa themed around a launderette. Charles admitted that he was trying to stay optimistic but in training he struggled with a key spin. Did he do enough to stay out of the bottom two?

The dance: Karen crafted a fun dance with plenty of impressive lifts tonight. Charles threw himself into the swing of things and he moved effortlessly around the ballroom. The man can wiggle his hips too!

The comments: Bruno said it was like a disco-Salsa telling Charles it worked but it wasn’t traditional. Craig said he loved the lifts but criticised Charles’ hips. Darcey told Charles he was hot but told him that taking smaller steps would improve his technique. Shirley said she liked the choreography and the crotch-thrusting action.

The score: 6, 6, 6, 7 – 25 out of 40

Lauren Steadman and AJ Pritchard

Paralympian Lauren invited AJ to compete against her in a triathlon during the week as she said he was getting too big for his boots. The exercise certainly helped the pair as they prepared for their Quickstep and AJ admitted he didn’t know how Lauren could have so much energy and stamina.

The dance: The routine was light and bouncy but I wasn’t completely convinced by the footwork. It looked like Lauren was struggling to keep up in parts. Still it was a good effort!

The comments: Craig said there were a few mistakes but told Lauren it was the most energy he’d seen from her so far. Darcey said ‘beautiful work’ and told Lauren it was a shame she came out of sync twice. Shirley commended some of Lauren’s footwork but pointed out the mistakes. Bruno agreed but cheered Lauren on.

The score: 6, 6, 6, 7 – 25 out of 40

Dr Ranj Singh and Janette Manrara

Dr Ranj didn’t get the best reception for his Quickstep last week. Tonight he was dancing the Paso Doble with Janette and during the week Dr Ranj took his pro partner to visit the hospital he works in. During training Dr Ranj admitted he was finding it tough but promised to show a different side.

The dance: I liked the routine but thought it lacked the power that a Paso needs. Some of Dr Ranj’s shapes were a little too soft and didn’t have the strength they should have. He had fun and it was enjoyable but not a great Paso.

The comments: Darcey said Dr Ranj was a nice surprise commenting on his focus and drama. Shirley told Dr Ranj that he made no mistakes and congratulated him on his technique. Bruno said Dr Ranj expressed himself well but told him the Spanish lines needed more depth. Craig told Dr Ranj he felt it was too placed but said he did well.

The score: 6, 7, 7, 7 – 27 out of 40

Kate Silverton and Aljaž Škorjanec

Following her near fall down the stairs last week, Kate was hoping that she’d do a bit better with her Samba tonight. During training Kate shared stories from her time and work in Africa with Aljaž to get into the spirit for their dance. Kate revealed that she was enjoying the routine and would be giving it her best tonight.

The dance: Kate had a huge smile on her face during the entire routine and she acquitted herself well. She’s not one of the strongest dancers in the competition but she’s certainly giving it her all. Kate is improving too.

The comments: Shirley told Kate she had a beautiful charisma but said it wasn’t her dance. Bruno said it was ‘a trip’ before telling Kate she got stuck a few times. Craig said the dance belonged behind the news desk. Darcey told Kate she was trying to achieve a lot but her face gave her away.

The score: 4, 5, 5, 6 – 20 out of 40

Graeme Swann and Oti Mabuse

Graeme said that last weekend ranked among the best experiences of his life. His Spider-man themed routine was well-received and it gave Graeme a confidence boost. Tonight Graeme and Oti were dancing a Jive to Queen but during training Graeme’s eagerness was annoying Oti. Was it another good week?

The dance: Graeme’s confidence shined through tonight. He looked like he was having the time of his life doing the Jive. There was plenty of energy and Oti was very happy by the end of the routine.

The comments: Bruno told Graeme that he didn’t miss a beat but was a little flat-footed at times. Craig said it needed to be more precise but commended Graeme’s showmanship. Darcey pointed out Graeme’s energy and timing but said she wanted sharper kicks. Shirley said she liked the routine and told Graeme he was becoming consistent.

The score: 5, 7, 7, 7 – 26 out of 40

Ashley Roberts and Pasha Kovalev

Pussycat Dolls singer Ashley had to face the Tango tonight with her partner Pasha. Coming off a very strong week last week, the pressure was on for the couple tonight. During training Ashley video called Dr Ranj and Janette for support as she admitted to struggling with the routine. Did she pull it all together on the night?

The dance: Well if Ashley was struggling in the week, it didn’t show tonight. Her performance was strong and confident but her previous dance training is clear. It was another great performance.

The comments: Craig said he loved it. Darcey told Ashley that she gives 100% but told her to be careful with her neck line. Shirley agreed with Darcey and told Ashley to work on her stillness in the Ballroom. Bruno said ‘check mate’ calling Ashley ‘the red Queen’.

The score: 8, 8, 8, 8 – 32 out of 40

Seann Walsh and Katya Jones

What a week Seann and Katya have had. We already mentioned the kissing scandal but Tess Daly was keen to point out that it was all about the dancing for them this weekend. In training Seann and Katya consulted with a Charleston expert to help finesse the routine.

The dance: The pressure on Seann and Katya tonight must have been immense but they dealt with it really well. The routine was fun with some daring lifts and Seann did a decent job of keeping up despite almost dropping Katya at the end.

The comments: Darcey said the routine had great energy and attack, and told Seann she was impressed with the lifts. Shirley said the choreography was outstanding and very entertaining. Bruno said they threw everything at it but the kitchen sink. Craig commended Katya’s ambitious choreography and told Seann he danced very well.

The score: 6, 7, 8, 7 – 28 out of 40

Stacey Dooley and Kevin Clifton

Closing out the evening tonight was Stacey and Kevin, who had a great week with their Minion-themed Jive last weekend. Stacey was working all around the UK during the week so Kevin accompanied her so they could train. Tonight they were dancing the Foxtrot.

The dance: It was always going to be hard to match their Jive but I thought Stacey and Kevin did well with their Foxtrot tonight. Stacey has really, really improved and she could be a dark horse in the competition.

The comments: Shirley said she loved the theme comparing the routine to a bottle of champagne. Bruno said the performance was styled to perfection. Craig said it leaned towards an American Smooth but said he really loved it. Darcey said Stacey was timeless and elegant in hold.

The score: 8, 8, 8, 9 – 33 out of 40

The leaderboard for the evening was:

Stacey Dooley and Kevin Clifton – 33
Ashley Roberts and Pasha Kovalev – 32
Faye Tozer and Giovanni Pernice – 29
Vick Hope and Graziano Di Prima – 29
Seann Walsh and Katya Jones – 28
Danny John-Jules and Amy Dowden – 27
Dr Ranj Singh and Janette Manrara – 27
Graeme Swann and Oti Mabuse – 26
Joe Sugg and Dianne Buswell – 26
Charles Venn and Karen Clifton – 25
Lauren Steadman and AJ Pritchard – 25
Kate Silverton and Aljaž Škorjanec – 20
Katie Piper and Gorka Marquez -18

Strictly Come Dancing 2018 continues tomorrow at 7.45pm on BBC One.

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