Tv treats

Been struggling to find something to blog about since my last post in January. I haven’t felt compelled to write about anything in particular and when an interesting topic has risen I have shied away from writing because I don’t have a clear view on the topic and don’t want my post to be a long, rambling list of contradictions!

I have had a few things that I’ve been watching on television over the last few months which don’t warrant their own individual posts but to make up for my lack of posting in the last 2 months I am combining for this sort of master post. (Also helps that I have time to write – yay 4 day weekend!)

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Strictly 2015 Favourite Dances

I have loved this series of Strictly Come Dancing. At the start of the series the only celebrity I didn’t know was Daniel O’Donnell but he soon won me over. The new pros have been great additions to the show with exciting choreography and great relationships with their celeb partners. It was possibly the highest standard of dancing the show has ever seen – by the quarter finals it was basically down to popularity of the celebs/pro dancers.

Jay and Aliona won making Aliona the first pro to win twice. I have loved Jay and Aliona throughout the series. However, if Jay hadn’t won, I would’ve liked Georgia to win. Once they were allowed to drop the Vincent and Louisa mark 2 facade, they came into their own, formed a great relationship and some showstopping dances.

Click continue reading to see what my favourite dances were of this series…

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Strictly New Pros

Last week the BBC announced that three new professional dancers are joining Strictly Come Dancing this year. Strictly fans, myself included, scrambled to see the news as when new dancers join, it means others have left (or been dropped) to make room for them. Three questions are in the minds of strictly fans when these announcements are made: Who are the new pros? Who is returning? Who is leaving?

The new pros were announced as Giovanni Pernice, Gleb Savchenko and Otlile Mabuse. Special mentions in the announcement were given to Iveta and Trent who are not returning and Robin Windsor is also not returning (though the executive producer neglects to comment about Windsor at all!) bringing the total number of pros to 16 for this year’s series in the Autumn.

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The Voice Lives (Series 4)

Back in January I wrote a blog post about The Voice UK returning for its fourth series and compiled a list of my favourite blind auditions. About 2 months later and all the blind auditions have been completed, the battles and the knockouts done. The live shows start tonight with the quarter final.

The live shows seem to be the point where the programme’s audience changes. I know myself and people my age like the blind auditions stage the most. I suppose this is because it is the show’s unique selling point; what makes it different from other reality talent shows. The same can be said for the battle stages and the knockouts. When the shows are live I guess the format is standard talent show like The X Factor and Britain’s Got Talent so the Voice loses some of its enticing features. However, whilst The X Factor and all of Simon Cowell’s replica shows have a relatively young audience, I would say that The Voice loses most of its younger audience at the live stage. This leads to singers progressing or winning (series 2 I’m looking at you!) that you wouldn’t have expected.

I won’t be watching the programme live tonight as I am at a concert but I will be watching on catchup. This blog post will discuss each team’s live show contestants ahead of tonight’s programme.

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This is The Voice

The new series of The Voice kicked off last week with the start of the blind auditions and introducing Rita Ora as a new judge. I like the blind auditions stage because the contestant is allowed to sing without being judged by their appearance first. It’s interesting to see which judges turn around and if more than one judge does turn, which one the contestant will choose to be their mentor.

So far this series I like Lucy O’Byrne (Team Will) and Howard Rose (Team Tom). I also liked the guy who sang House of the Rising Sun but unfortunately he didn’t get through. I’m not going to blog properly about this series yet as there has only been one episode at the time of writing this. Instead this post is going to be about my favourite performances from all the preceding series.

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Strictly 2014 Stats

I was so involved with Strictly 2014 this year. I watched the main shows, most of the result shows, most It Takes Two episodes, lurked but never posted on forums to see the opinions of others, blogged about it, read blogs especially the brilliant recaps by Monkseal, waited patiently every Wednesday on my lunch break for the music and dances to be revealed etc. I knew who all the contestants were this year so it was really engaging and entertaining for me.

I have decided to choose my favourite of each style of dance. For someone who isn’t a fan of too many props and overtheming, there are quite a few theme week dances in the mix. Click continue reading to see which ones I chose…

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The final four

After a shock boot in the quarter-finals (Team Trixie – my favourites and if the show was based purely on dancing ability, the clear winners) and a slightly less shocking but still a surprise boot in the semi-finals for Jake & Janette, the finalists of Strictly Come Dancing 2014 have been chosen.

I thought the public vote might have pushed Jake through to the final but I am not too bothered about him leaving because at this stage he was the least technical/improved dancer left. However, I feel that we may have been deprived of a fun showdance of gurning, bumwiggling and seeing how high he can throw Janette.

Obviously as a Team Trixie supporter I would have loved Pixie & Trent to win but I have had to switch my allegiance to another couple.

Click continue reading to find out my thoughts on the final four.

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Strictly week 1

So week 1 of the new series of Strictly Come Dancing is officially over. I have been so excited all week (this may have contributed to me winning the living room tv problem with my housemate – strictly vs xfactor) and was glued to my television this weekend. This weekend’s programmes definitely didn’t disappoint. The standard seemed to be the highest it has been for the debut weekend in the last few years – definitely better than the opening weekend last year despite still having a few dodgy dances!

I’m loving Tess and Claudia presenting it. There’s a few odd scripted jokes/puns that Tess has to say but on the whole there’s less joking around and more focus on the dancing which I am loving! I also love Claudia – she’s so funny!

One thing that’s really annoying me (already!) is the studio audience. Firstly, you do not need to give standing ovations in week 1. It’s just going to get boring seeing the audience stand up everytime someone dances and by the time in the series when a couple really deserve a standing ovation for an excellent routine or closer to the final when they’re almost professional standard, the sentiment and appreciation behind the standing ovation will not be felt. The novelty will have worn off and standing ovations will not mean anything important. Secondly, do not boo the judges unless they are being intentionally mean or insulting. As it’s week 1 none of the celebrities are perfect dancers so constructive criticism is needed. Just because the judge is not praising the celeb does not mean the information isn’t important, the criticism helps the dancers! Audiences need to work out when the judge is being useful and when they’re actually being mean. In my opinion, all the criticism this week was constructive and none of the judges deserved to be booed for expressing that criticism. If the audience wants to jump to their feet after every performance or listen to judges who only praise the contestants then they should attend x-factor or itv talent shows and NOT strictly!

Ok. Rant over! Click on continue reading to see who my favourites are and what I thought of the dances…

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Strictly speaking

As a massive Strictly Come Dancing fan I am so excited that the series is nearly upon us. The launch show took place about two weeks ago and officially introduced the competitors of 2014. This series looks to be the best yet from the line-up. I’ve been worried the last few years that they were running out of credible celebrities but I have actually heard of ALL this year’s contestants and know who they are!

During the launch show the celebrities are paired with their professional partners and they will have been training for 2-3 weeks before the series starts next Friday.  I was going to write this blog post sooner but having started a job 2 weeks ago and various other things going on, I haven’t found much time or made the effort to sit down with my laptop and just write. At least I’ve got round to it before the series properly starts or I don’t think I ever would!

I’m going to discuss the pairings based on the launch show and the First Steps clips available on the programme’s website  but before that I just want to say how happy I am about the all-female presenting team. Sir Bruce Forsyth decided to retire from presenting duties earlier this year although he is still returning for charity and Christmas specials to maintain some sort of presence and continuity. I’m happy to see Bruce go. I appreciate his contribution to the show but I have felt he has been a bit all over the place for the last two series at least.

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I’ve preferred the shows where Claudia had to step in which makes me so excited for her and Tess to be the official presenting team now. I also think it’s a bold move from the BBC to have an all-female presenting team. Yes I know they already have Mel & Sue presenting bake-off on a Wednesday night but I’m pretty sure this is the first female presenting team for a primetime Saturday night slot!

Now back to the couples…

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