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Thank you and goodbye (until 2011!)

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BBC Eurovision Paul BBC Eurovision Paul | 16:49 UK time, Tuesday, 21 December 2010

Hi everyone!

Just wanted to say a huge thank you to everyone who's taken part in the discussions on the BBC Strictly Come Dancing News Blog in 2010. Not only have we had been able to host some fascinating discussions and debates between the public on all sorts of topics (most notably a certain ex-MP!), we've also turned in the space of just four months into the most visited, read and used blog on the entire BBC website! So well done all of you!

We're closing the News Blog at midday on Wednesday 22nd December - although you'll be able to read all of the posts that have already been made.

And although this is the end for the News Blog for this year, don't forget the Strictly Come Dancing Christmas Special, which will be broadcast on the big day itself, 25th December, at 7pm.

The ten dancers competing in the Strictly Come Dancing Christmas special 2010.

Five brand new celebrities, including Business Secretary Vince Cable MP, comedienne Ronni Ancona, EastEnders legend June 'Dot Cotton' Brown, presenter Fern Britton and all-round entertainer John Barrowman will compete to win the special Christmas trophy. There'll also be special festive showdance by the final five couples from the 2010 series - and if you're very lucky, you might just see the Strictly judges throwing some shapes on the dancefloor as well...

The contestants from the 2010 Strictly Come Dancing series dance in the Christmas special

So that's it. We really hope you've enjoyed this series of Strictly Come Dancing - we've certainly had a brilliant time bringing you all the latest news, info and backstage gossip.

So from me and the rest of the Strictly website team - Andrew, Gemma, Emily and Kirstie - we all hope you have a brilliant Christmas and a fantastic New Year in 2011. Roll on Series 9!

BBC Strictly Paul


  • Comment number 1.

    Andrew, what about dancers' blogs?

  • Comment number 2.

    Until 2011... if you mean the Tour, then yes, but alas, having watched every single series of SCD, this will be my last.
    I won't watch again until:
    1)Matt Baker receives an apology for the mauling he got on the semi-final show
    2)The judging panel explain their marking this season and the bias towards certain celebs in particular
    3)The panel - 3 of them- are replaced by qualified, impartial judges who do not see themselves as legends in their own right.

    This season's SCD was ruined for me by the silly scoring, the VTs that were spun against some by showing nasty out of context clips, by Tess Daly and by Brucie.

    I don't think I'm alone in my views.

    Goodbye SCD.

    Matt Baker and Aliona Vilani were a pleasure to watch and the only reason I stuck it out as long as I did!

  • Comment number 3.

    Next season please do make sure that the rules for each dance are made explicit - and strictly adhered to by the judges rather than the ad hoc ignoring we've seen this year.

  • Comment number 4.

    Many, many viewers feel like this but will the BBC take any notice?

  • Comment number 5.

    I totally agree with the above posts, we need judges that are fair and judge every couple the same!

    It would also be good if the BBC published the voting figures!

  • Comment number 6.

    Thank you for all the blogs and opportunities to support our teams and make our feelings known.

    Please BBC take heed of what has been written above. (Post 2) There are many of us in agreement with these sentiments. Many Many people have commented on the obvious inconsistencies in the marking and comments of judges particularly with regard to Matt and Aliona. Something fishy was going on - please don't take the british public for fools. After all, we pay your wages.

  • Comment number 7.

    Thanx BBC for another great series of SCD.
    Here are a few suggestions for next year:

    1. Please bring back the dance off to save good dancers going out too early (Poor Jimmi)

    2. Please make sure the judges are polite to the contestants (Poor Matt)

    3. Keep the final simple. Too many dances compromise the quality of the show.

  • Comment number 8.

    No Alesha as judge anymore, there have been many disagreements on these threads but we are all united in wanting Karen Hardy to replace her.

  • Comment number 9.

    I've never really taken much interest in Strictly Come Dancing(thought it to be rather'fuddy-duddy'!!) but by chance whilst flicking through channels I saw Matt Baker dancing..and WOW! from that moment on I started watching..but ONLY because of him.

    I doubt I'll watch the next series though...I've been appalled at the blatant bias shown towards some of the contestants and very unfair scores awarded....unwarranted top ones to judges' obvious favourites and lower scores for some of the least favoured dancers' best performances!

    For some reason the judges after the early dances turned against Matt Baker as I feel did some of the professional dancers at the end.It seemed the male dancers wanted one of their own to win!

    For me you had a star attraction in your show which kept me watching & voting...Matt Baker and his partner Aliona Vilani who brought a fresh, young,innovative,& exciting approach to dancing.They were the most attractive,sexiest,consistent,committed,hard working,& the most pleasant& genuine couple on the show.But goodness me were they often slated & criticized for it!

  • Comment number 10.

    Thank you to everyone for making blogging fun - it was as good as watching SCD itself. Ok we didn't all agree but at least we got the rants out! On reflection I probably wouln't have changed anything this series. Even Widdy was funny at the start. Well, up to the point she appeared anyway. I hope the judges keep the way they are - I'd hate SCD to get too serious. But no more politicians please.
    Merry Christmas to all and hope 2011 brings an even better line up in SCD.

  • Comment number 11.

    The producers of this show must be thrilled to bits.....

    they've achieved fantastic viewing figures by not going head to head with the X factor

    the mix of celebs has been seen as one of the best..[ for me since series 3]

    the standard of dancing has been higher than in recent years

    they've achieved a woman winner...which must have been a worry as since series 2 only 2 women have won.....

    no dance off which has been a great return to viewer power

    However...many viewers have watched the show for years....and dont like

    use of props

    leniency in allowing "looser" rules on dances, breaking "hold", allowing "lifts"

    the comments about the judges made above, I would add my endorsement to that...needs massively sorting out

  • Comment number 12.

    got to agree with irishmattfan and babette; the bias demonstrated against matt baker has rendered the judges pointless. there's a point where saying 'they're there to provide entertainment as well as expertise' stops having any meaning- i'd say it did with the comparative treatment matt recieved from judges against how they scoreed other competitors. it's like they had a different set of criteria for him from the others.

    also, really disappointing that the judges were so unsupportive (lacking understanding?) of aliona's choreography. she has brought an innovative style to an 8 year old show which needs it- she should be applauded and the judges should be encouraging the (less informed?) public to understand it. instead, you have the public cheering something new (ie, the american smooth) and the judges at a loss

    really hope the judges or producers, or whoever decides the tenor of this programme, decide what they want it to be, and display an unbiased, unmanipulative approach to strictly.

    and please stop len and bruce making such tawdry end of the pier jokes. it's like they've been left with a pile of mike reid dvds in 1973. makes me shudder with it's unpleasant, sexist overtones

  • Comment number 13.

    On the whole thought all the changes they did made the show better- what will the props, more staircases, opening the top level so people could use that level to dance on, strangely no-one used it in the final. I liked that they had the partnerships between the celebrities and professionals on the show and thought the pairings were really good. The list of celebrities involved was the best I've seen and it was wonderful to see them all dancing. They got some really good singers on the show which was brilliant to see. I am in two minds about the public deciding who should go out and who should say and the Judges haven't no say in that regard because I think some of the good dancers went out the show before we really saw the talent they had like Tina O'Brien, Jimi Mistry and Goldie. It would have been great to see what else they could do but then I can see that the Judges too will have their favourites. I liked that they had a few theme nights, really made the show a lot more interesting- Halloween, Movie Night. I was a bit sad not to see a few more group dances with the celebrities and professionals. On the whole, it has been good and I have even enjoyed the updated blog site. It has been really brilliant and I want to thank everyone at Strictly- Bruce, Tess, Claudia, Judges, Professionals, Celebrities and all the stage and costume/makeup/hair and of course the bloggers for all their hard work and can't wait for next year and who will be in the lineup for next year.

  • Comment number 14.

    You all need to dry your eyes and stop complaining, Kara and Artem deserved to win. There is no way Matt should have won the competition, sorry if that upsets all you Matt lovers.

  • Comment number 15.

    Im certainly not saying that Kara and Artem didnt deserve to win, the point we are trying to make is that Matt and Aliona were reated unfairly by the judges!

  • Comment number 16.

    sorry meant to say treated

  • Comment number 17.

    Moira C - sorry to disappoint, but the only tears we 'Matt Lovers' have in our eyes are tears of laughter! We've been having a ball (glitterless, yes, but hey ho! See we can joke about it) on the mattiona blog. we are all chilled and happy. But I defy anyone to say the judges scoring has not been inconsistent and biased this year. kara and artem suffered at the hands of the incnsistency too. That's what we are complaining about, and it was Matt and Aliona that copped the worst of it.

  • Comment number 18.

    moira c

    I've already relayed congratulations to Team Kartem for winning, and I am very pleased for them. I'm even pleased that Matt & Aliona came second. There are no eyes here needing to be dried, thanks.

    The points made by posters above are not trying to quibble that Matt should have won. Instead, it is felt that he and Aliona deserved to be treated better, and more fairly. This point has been acknowledged by viewers who were not Mattiona fans, but who clearly saw the bias and lack of respect accorded to Matt.

  • Comment number 19.

    I am very pleased that Kara and Artem won, she was consistently the best dancer.

    The series on the whole has been spoiled by many of the decisions made by the new producer. I was particularly annoyed with the replacement of Matthew, Ian and Darren by inferior dancers, with the exception of Artem. The dance troupe was a complete joke, as we hardly ever saw them, just a token to shut up the viewers who disagreed with the producer's dumping of the other professionals. The props were over-used and spoiled many of the dances. The judging on the whole was pathetic, because none of the rules were explained to the audience and most of the judges changed their judging criteria depending on which celebrity was in front of them. Finally the Ann Widdecombe farce - please can we get rid of the pantomime horse role next year, it results in many of the good dancers being voted off.

  • Comment number 20.

    #14 My eyes are well and truly dry I mean after the scd tour Kara will most probaly never be seen again not unless she pops up in the jungle at least with Matt we will be seeing him nearly every day. Complete and utter heaven.

  • Comment number 21.

    15....Moira...its not mentioned that Matt should have won, that is you putting your thoughts on these posts!!!
    What is stated by myself and others is that Matt should have been treated equally, I don't think that is too much to ask, do you?
    Kara won and well done to her and her boyfriend Artem, Matt himself said she was a worthy winner.
    What alot of us objected to was the way in which Matt was spoken to by the judges in both the finals and semis... it smacked of bullying.
    We also didn't like the way some of the VTs were put together-eg showing Matt storming off after the Salsa when in fact he had only 2 minutes to change. If you notice that on semi-final night all the others had slower dances and then had lots of time to recover, Matt with the most energetic dance was not given that luxury, and was then shown in a bad light.
    Tess on many occasions asked Matt how much he wanted a ten, and then how much he wanted to win the competition-making it seem like that's all he cared about-none of the other competitors were pushed like this.

    For many weeks some celebs mucked up their dances or put illegal lifts into their routines, but were given elevated scores, while Matt (and indeed Kara on occasion) were given lower scores for better dances. If you think I am biast, maybe I am, but this fact has been mentioned by some other professionals. The judges had obvious favourites (Pam and Scott) this year and that is not how they should behave.

    So, all we ask is fairness and for ALL contestants to be treated with respect.... even Ann Widdecombe who was also subjected to some very cruel remarks.

    Congrats to Kartem, you danced beautifully.
    Those of us who support Matt and Aliona are entitled to do so and to say how talented we know they are.

    No tear drying here, no need, we are looking forward to watching and supporting Matt in all his future ventures .

  • Comment number 22.

    I am with 2_Red_Shoes. - A great series with the usual ups and downs. Some unwarranted high scores and harsh comments to some (not just Matt for goodness sake). The best quality of contestants nicely balanced with a few lame ducks & earnest triers.

    Clarity on why a particular score was given might help; although Alesha has no traditional dance experience at least she justified her high scores even if it was just to counteract Craig. More helpful advice earlier in the series from the judges may avoid the need for the belated hard comments (provided said advice is heeded of course).

    For the professionals.
    First & foremost teach your celebrity the basics. Only then should you work to their strengths and push their learnt and natural skills.

  • Comment number 23.

    I have writen a formal complaint to the BBC. Here is a summary

    1 The undermarking/overmarking which helped less popular good dancers get to the final stages. Giving 10s in dances when there were obvious mistakes/basic footwork was weak.
    2 The obvious bias of the judges against Matt and in particular the verbal mauling he got on semi final night.Totally undeserved.
    3 Overlooking faults and mistakes in some routines while others were heavily penalised.
    4The negative VTs Matt and Aliona got in the latter half of the competition. Every couple have their tense moments. Matt and Aliona's were re run in their final VT in case we had forgotten any. These cannot compete with a lovely romance in Kara's VT.
    5 Claudia and Tess kept asking Matt how much he wanted to win. Made him look desperate. No one was more desperate to win than James. He is so competitive and his wife won last year.
    6 Props make the poor dancing at the beginning look more entertaining but should not be used once the real dancing competition begins towards the end.It can distract the attention from poor dancing.
    7 Pro routines on the whole lacked the wow factor thhis year. The show dancers looked like the B team. Not impressed with them. Too much show dancing this year. Prefer to see some latin/ballroom as well.
    8 When the judges did not like choreography they addressed the pro. except for Matt baker who had to bear the wrath of the judges if they did not like Aliona's choreography.(Salsa night worst example Also the AS)
    9 Asked the reason the show dance was not at the end as usual. I think I know the reason but we shall see.I certainly know who benefitted the most for the change.

  • Comment number 24.

    I would be missing SCD already but I sky plussed the lot and can watch whenever. Kartem were worthy winners and I congratulate them, especially with Kara being injured but carrying on like a true professional. I agree with other posters, though, (1. don't bother with a circus act again [Ann Widd.] 2. not really very fair to have the swingathon straight after a dancer had performed - couldn't they have slotted a show dance in so whomever [Matt/Aliona] had just danced could catch their breath. 3. cutting the footage to make it look like Matt was storming out of the studio -when he was merely racing to change for the swingathon). I would add that it was somewhat of a joke when Scott got such high scores for THAT dance (you know the one I mean...), when he completely, and by his own admission, forgot the steps. I also thought that some of the comments directed toward Ann Widdicombe were downright rude and unnecessary. It is irrelevant that she is the sort of person who can 'cope' with that type of treatment - in this day and age of anti-social behaviour on our streets, left, right and centre, rudeness should not be used as part of an entertainment programme. If you use such behaviour in such a blase manner, in the name of entertainment, then those who are subjected to such treatment will find it more difficult to get people to take their hurt feelings seriously.
    I DO think its daft that the pro dancers continue to put illegal lifts in. WHY do they do it? Do the producers urge them to do it, to make the show 'confrontational and interesting'? Because it bores me. For all the extra viewers they may get for any headline grabbing issues (John Sargeant/Ann Widdicombe/spats between judges), they must lose some die hard viewers who just want to watch celebs trying hard to learn the steps, and get their sequin fix on a Saturday night. Oh, and P-L-E-A-S-E don't bother with a sunday nights result show. Leaks get out. How about having (on Sunday night) an indepth interview with the outgoing celeb&pro dancer duo, all four judges, and a properly qualified 'arbitrator' (like Karen Hardy) during which they can critique the dance routine and the pro dancer can stand up for their choreography and explain the meaning behind their steps (I have to say that I missed all the meaning in Matt/Aliona's 'New York' dance). We already know that the judges CAN get it wrong (James Jordan pulled Craig Revel Horwood up on something, and Craig admitted he was wrong) so it would be good to have a properly qualified independent person there. They could have a group dance or two too.
    All that aside, I'm not going to say that I won't watch next year - because I know I will. I hope that the BBC won't resort to desperation tactics to get people to watch. If you look back at previous years, you will surely see that the ones who get to the final are the ones who can actually dance and who are nice people. So that just proves that those are the type of people that the viewing public actually WANT to see!
    OH, AND P-L-E-A-S-E GO BACK TO DONATING MONEY TO A CHARITY! How about letting each celeb choose their own charity?

  • Comment number 25.

    I would like to thank Matt and Aliona for the many entertaining and memorable routines this year. From the moment Matt somersaulted across the floor in the cha cha I was well and truly hooked. You were a joy to watch and did not deserve the treatment you got. You had to work harder than most other contestants because of Matt's workload but got very little recognition for all your efforts from the judges. You mastered techniques, were not afraid to try something different and you were so entertaining when you were interviewed. The audiences loved you and you got more standing ovations than anyone else. No other couple had a standing ovation every night and some of those went on for longer and were a lot noisier than anyone else got. I hope the love you felt in the studio and in the Tower Ballroom Blackpool helps to make up for the judges being so biased against you. Thank you, thank you.thank you. You are my most favouite couple ever to appear on Strictly. Thank you for brightening up my Saturday nights.

  • Comment number 26.

    Not the best of series, in my opinion, but still the best light entertainment show by a country mile!
    Fewer props, a recall for some former pros and more consistent judging would all help.
    Keep Claudia, Tess and Brucie and make a results show more meaningful, but NOT by returning to the dance-off; after this years' judges performance, that is unthinkable!
    Ignore the knockers and continue to give us the widest range of celebrities possible.
    See you in September!

  • Comment number 27.

    Congrats to Kartem and also to worthy and equally gracious runners up Mattiona.

    Comments for next year:
    I hope we have less VT (we don't like the editing for reasons given above) and more dancing, preferably seeing more of the professionals that many of us have missed. By the end of the series they weren't even dancing in front of whoever was singing on the Sunday show and this is strictly not the X-factor - we watch for the dancing.

    We also want consistancy from the judges, don't overmark one man who can barely stand up through his routine, then criticise another who doesn't put a step wrong and put it down to personal taste. If a move is illegal then all should be penalised by all the judges, if not then we don't need to hear about it. If the professional champion showdancers in past years get standing ovations from the judges for the guy standing and chucking the girl around for 2 minutes, then the celebrities should not be criticised for lack of traditional dancing when doing a lot more actual dancing. The judges should give a PROFESSIONAL opinion, without bullying and playing favourites, the latter being the whole point of how the public vote.
    Following on from that can we replace judges who cannot offer a balanced professional view with those who can. I echo the praise for Karen Hardy who has shown her professional eye on ITT.

    A number of us would also like a presenter who doesn't stumble over the autocue and stop the whole show when the audience don't laugh at some appalling excuses for jokes.

    Thank you to all the hard working professionals on the show, dancers and many more besides, although why do the singers and orchestra get a mention every week when hard working costume designers and others are ignored.

    Well done for the ever informative ITT with the lovely Claudia, not everyone's cup of tea I note, but I've always enjoyed ITT. If the BBC want to be "VT happy" that show and the internet are the place for it, not the Saturday night show.

    I'm with those who don't want to see a joke contestant stealing the limelight from those who can perform a dance with skill and precision and I would rather such people were not included in the line-up, but there will always be an underdog.

    And PLEASE can you sort out the mockery that is the Sunday night show.
    Everyone knows the result is filmed on Saturday and the internet means that the result is often known. Without the dance off this show is hollow and pointless. Sort out the scheduling and give us a shorter update on Saturday night, you can always rerun it Sunday morning for those who can't wait up.

    Overall I was pretty happy with the order in which people left, with only one or two staying longer than their talent suggested, which means I'm in no hurry to see the return of a dance off that led to some terrific dancers leaving, the most ridiculous of which for me was Gaby Logan.

    I've loved a lot of the dancing, particularly some showstoppers from Kara and Matt.
    The blogs have been terrific, giving genuine fans an opportuntity to share views with other like-minded people.
    Thank you strictly for another impressive series, but we want even better next year!

  • Comment number 28.

    Loved this year! Thanks Strictly cast and crew! Happy Christmas!
    I look forward to the Xmas special

  • Comment number 29.

    This message is for Dave Arch, his orchestra and singers:

    Thank you, you were all simply brilliant.

    I hope that we get to see more of you all on ITT next season.

  • Comment number 30.

    In the Final next year can we have quality over quantity. It was cruel to expect Pamela to learn a new dance and then not let her perform it.

    In the Christmas special can you stick to the old formula of previous champions and familiar faces who have learned the ropes.

    No maverick next year which causes good dancers to go out before their time.

    No 9's for contestants who forget the routine.

    No running upstairs after a performance.

    No rudeness and vulgarity from the judges, only constructive criticism.

    Never again a repeat of the appalling treatment Matt Baker received.

    No Alesha Dixon. If you must have a previous winner, Karen, Lilia or Camilla who will know what they are talking about.

    Previous winners to present the trophy.

    Thanks for putting on a good show but no more tampering with a winning formula.

  • Comment number 31.

    Perhaps even, dare I suggest it - no Tess?

    Made us all cringe the questions she asked Matt Baker and no on else.

    "Just between you and me, Matt, how much would you like to win".

    "Just between you and me" live on national television indeed.

  • Comment number 32.

    My last SCD.

    Have enjoyed the dancing but have been infuriated by the rudeness of the judges to many of the celebs, the inconsistent marking and the openly admitted bias towards some contestants by judges and in VT's.

    Thank you Matt, Kara, Pamela etc for bringing us some lovely dances to watch.

    Biggest thank you goes to Matt for bringing a little something different to the party and for being such a lovely person!

  • Comment number 33.

    Dear All,
    A Happy New Year 2011 to all!

    I enjoyed this series very much and it is not my last SCD (hopefully).
    My comments are regarding the Website.

    If I am not wrong,
    we could watch all weeks' performance until the end of the season in the previous years.
    Now they are only for a week until the next week (as it was and is with ITT).
    There were also all clips of all dances and now only some selection.
    One could also go through all quizes (in the case if you missed one), now only one latest quiz is kept.

    Please, reconsider this.

    And a question to the crew:
    is it true that it was possible to see performances on the BBC website in some countries?
    I am certain I was able to do watch them whwn I was in Japan in 2008.
    Or it is my imagination?

    Best wishes to all,
    Keep dancing,


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