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Strictly Come Dancing (@StrictlySA) Season 7 Episode 1: A review

Our favourite local dance show returned to our screens last Friday to much fanfare (and more viewers, we hope). The SABC 3 show, which is hosted by Expresso’s Katlego Maboe and MTV Choice’s Roxy Burger, started with a bang, with a tribute dance to Nelson Mandela, choreographed by judge and first season champion, Michael Wentik.

But enough about the niceties etc. Here’s the review of the show, the hosts and of course, the dancers

The Show

Immediate improvement from last season’s show. The sound is better, the band is better and the vocalists are AWESOME! Thank you Rapid Blue for listening to your viewers about this. Half the time we couldn’t even comment on the dancing because the singing was so bad, we’d focus on it. The judges are great and 

The Hosts

Katlego Maboe is an excellent presenter. He’s the definition of the new South Africa. He’s multilingual, which makes conversing with contestants so much easier. He’s bubbly (like Berocca in a glass of champagne, bubbly), plus he’s a pro when it comes to presenting live TV, thanks to doing it every weekday on Expresso.

Roxy Burger on the other hand, was very timid, yet as the night wore on, she started relaxing and her personality shone through. Its clear she’s not that used to live TV, but in a few weeks that should be sorted.

The Dancers

Khanyi and Quintus 
We predicted that Khanyi Mbau will be the one to beat and she is. She showed everybody how to do it, getting the first 8 of the competition. She danced the waltz and she was ethereal to watch. Either it’s the dance skills, the white gown or that fact that, as Samantha Peo said, she has a good sense of her body. We are looking forward to great dancing from her this season.

Boity and Ryan 
Ryan Hammond is the defending champion and has a lot to prove. And he did. It’s unbelievable that they only had a week to train for the show. A week. Boity was in Brazil and Ryan was taking part in a competition. It’s impressive, then, that their samba was so good. Imagine if they had the three weeks their fellow contestants had? Looking forward to these two and like Lalla and Zakeeya last season, it’s clear the race will be between Boity and Khanyi. Let the games, begin and may the odds ever be in their favour!

Leandi and Brandon
Another couple to watch. Brandon still hasn't won the show and he must be feeling very pressure. Watching him and Leandi dance was great. The judges were tough to them, and that's because they know they can do well. Easily one of the couples to watch to season. 

LeAnne and Johannes
The Princess and Prince Charming glided on the dance floor during their waltz. It was pretty, but there was no personality. But then, who could blame them? It was the first night and everyone was nervous. They could surprise, but they are middle tier in our books. 

Ashish and Lindsey
Now Ashish and Lindsey had so much personality, we wanted to eat it all up! So much bravado and fun on the dance floor and generally, that's what former champion, Lindsey Muckle does to her partner- unleashes the dragon. Their Michael Jackson inspired Cha Cha Cha was great and we want to see more. 

Janine and Tsholo
Not bad at all, but they need to find their groove ASAP. They are a stunning pair and beautiful to watch in the post-dance interview with Roxy, but they didn't set the dance floor on fire with their waltz. But then it is the waltz... 

Donovan and Mary
So much fun! Donovan is a hilarious. But then he needs to rein it in when on the dance floor so as to not think this is a joke. Fun couple though and their samba had its moments. Plus the song choice was interesting. They are a couple we are going to keep an eye out for. Mary is a former champion and knows what she's doing, so Donovan could be the underdog right now. 

Siv and Marcella
The thing with comedians is that they think they have to be funny all the time. That's not the case. Siv and Marcella (a newbie :)) disappointed as we had high hopes. Let's hope it was just nerves. 

John and Nombulelo
Nombulelo joined the show last season and was mostly great with Mpho Poops. John is a retired rugby player, so imagine the amount of work that she has to do with John? Imagine a rugby player being flexible and being boss on the dance floor? While it didn't happen, it's a start and John did better than we had anticipated.

Jonathan and Hayley
Should we bother? This was such a disappointment. Hayley is such an excellent dancer (even though she does tend to rely on themes a lot) and Jonathan makes such a great partner on paper, but man, their dance was really sad. Really sad. 

Catch the show tonight at 8pm on SABC 3 and the results show on Saturday at 7pm

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