How much do I love dancing? Enough to watch both the British and American versions of this dance competition and take notes comparing the two styles of production! The Argentine Tango is so so coooool.
*, at Blog About Nowt and Red sent us the British season of Strictly Come Dancing. In America it is called Dancing With The Stars. At first I wasn't sure if I would get the same kind of edgey nervousness watching the British show because woulnd't know any of the stars...but I got right into it after a couple of episodes. The only competitiors I knew were Louise from East Enders(I used to watch the soap) and Baby Spice, Emma. Second episode I was hooked and had my faves.
We watched the show in the kitchen which was a different pace and right away I yelled "hey it's Len" happy to recognize one of the judges. Stagg says,"there are two judges" meaning also the crazy Bruno who also is a judge from American show. I was so happy to see both Bruno and Len as they are amazing critics and lovers of the dance. The British version has four judges, the American three judges, one being Carrie Ann (who was a dancer on tour with Madonna)
It was fascinating to notice the difference between the two productions, the British concept being the original. Right off the top, the British version is way funnier. I never laugh watchign the American one although I am vaguely aware that some people fid the host funny, I don't notice him even making one decent joke. So I loved the British sensibility and light touch. The direction and camera work was frustrating and not as good as the American. I liketo see the legs on the dancers in jive...but the camera would often go to their faces during dances whih is fine for some, but not jive people!
The British versions band is.....well they seem to flatten every song they perform, sometimes I would be laughing. "Come on come on come on" was barely recognizable as Janis Joplins hit. And it took almost to the end of the season for anyone to mention or thank their band. The American version has one tightass awesome band with incredible singers...and everyone thanks them and puts them in screen Very little of that in British program. Made me sad...but the band did too unfortunately. The audience is put way up up in focus, lots of attention and energy directed towards including them, not so much in American version. Again, the band gets a lot of attention.
The female host on British show, Tess, is very good and personable and excellent in interviews. The American female host is usless.
I was very pleased to find that the structure overall in both shows is similar with behind the scenes of the training and rapport between professional dancers and the celebrity wanna be dancers. It is absolutely amazing to see a celelbrity get inspired and ambitious to learn all the dances. The pogram makes me nuts when excellent celebrity dancers are voted off in favor of popular personalities, but what can you do. when Spoony was voted off I yelled "fucking bullshit!" Yes, I am like a frat boy when watching my reality tv shows.
I think when I find out if * and Red have Dancing With The Stars aired in England or not...and if not I should record this program for them here, because it's really a riot to see the nuances. I am dying to find out Red...why why do they have such weird program times. At first I thought I was hearing things wrong..."tonights show at 9:35.
9:35 what? I was howling with laughter when the hostswould say things like, next week we are back at "five past six"...I couldn't contain myself. Other show times, 5:50, 9:50 and 6:35...say what? (was it because of the world cup?) Thanks Red and *....we loved seeing this competition and I think the British version is better for overall "spirits" and humor!
My favourites were Spoony, Ray (HOT!!!!!) Mark(HOT!!!) Matt and Louise...as much as Emma was "accurate" and "proficent" she didn't have half the entertainment value and style and personality of Ray and Spoony and Louise. I was furious when the judges, especially Craig would be sopping all over her. YAWN.
We haven't watched the finale yet...so shhh till tonight! (but it has to be Mark...what a marvel his dancing is...to think his whole life he didn't dance before!)