Strictly Come Dancing is rotten to the core – tears, bullying and affairs make it Hunger Games in full swing

STRICTLY Come Dancing is the apple of the BBC’s eye.

One that is rotten to the core. . . Yes, the Beeb pulled a blinder — and convinced us that the show is woker and woker when it’s actually about the Hunger Games.

Strictly speaking, it's far from waking up - which is why it remains a staple of Saturday night


Strictly speaking, it’s far from waking up – which is why it remains a staple of Saturday nightPhoto credit: BBC
In reality, the show is a brutal Hunger Games on speed


In reality, the show is a brutal Hunger Games on speedPhoto credit: The Hunger Games: Mockingjay

Forget the rictus grin, the jazz hands, the fake tan, the sequins.

And don’t let the cute on-camera camaraderie with Tess and Claudia fool you. Oh no.

Strictly speaking, it’s a big, hot mess of tears, tantrums, and terrifying ambition.

Not to mention the dissolution of the marriage. Marriages fail, illicit fantasies thrive, and celebs are stubbornly criticized like cattle in a market.

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At the age of 7 I was a boy named James. At 39, I'm glad I never got hormone pills

On Saturday night, Fleur East reportedly broke down in tears after being told she was facing the dance-off.

And in her new autobiography, Gabby Logan cites rampant sexism and says she was kicked out of the competition because she was “too competitive”.

“I was just training hard and then maybe looking a little too disappointed when I got a low score,” she writes.

“Basically, I think I’ve shown all the signs of being an ‘athlete’.”

And what about the infamous Strictly Come Dancing curse? No fear.

It has already struck; Nikita Kuzmin broke up with his five-year-old girlfriend.

No doubt more will follow.

Because absolutely no one in a relationship—no one in their right mind, anyway—steps in sternly without acknowledging that they can fall head over heels in love with their partner’s lust.

And what are Strictly producers with a history of heartbreak doing to try and mitigate the curse?

Why, for starters, combine gorgeous single dancers with bored middle-aged married guys.

Last year poor, chaste, very Christian Dan Walker looked like a man wrestling with his soul with 5’7″ blonde seductress Nadiya Bychkova.

He resisted the temptation, but she later split from her fiancé and began dating fellow pro Kai Widdrington.

last laugh

Everywhere you look there is someone on Strictly.

And every year, fans rush to analyze the sexual chemistry, encouraging more kissing, more cheating. . . If BBC managers really wanted it to be all about dancing they would scrap the public vote.

This is pure sport. A family-friendly entertainment show? Bah! The more headlines and social media hashtags the better, darling.

This year’s show is the most diverse. Featuring two same-sex couples, a former Paralympian, as well as different ethnicities, accents, ages and body types, the BBC has been busy ticking those boxes.

Miseryguts who didn’t like this were quick to complain. As they always do.

The ratings went down, it got debated because people didn’t want diversity shoved down their constricted little throats. Nonsense.

On Saturday, 8.3 million people tuned in to see Tony Adams remove his shirt and “sexily” (the quotation marks carry a lot of weight here) to The Full Monty samba.

Ah, Tony: that middle-aged, white, multimillionaire cis guy. Box ticking at its finest.

Like many middle-aged men, Tony can’t really dance. But he’s really, really trying. . . and therein lies the magic of Strictly.

But when BBC executives cast a man nicknamed The Donkey, they knew what they were doing – they were providing the comedy act.

But for once we all have the last laugh.

Make no bones about it: Strictly Come Dancing is NOT a wake-up call — which is precisely why it remains a Saturday night staple.

No end to the stigma

THE Trans Youth Charity Mermaids was forced to shut down its vital helpline for young people last week over “unbearable abuse”.

Trans people make up about one percent of the population — yet the chatter around them is disproportionately large. And often overwhelmingly cruel.

Ms Farrow's anti-LGBTQ Twitter rants come across as anything but friendly and Christian


Ms Farrow’s anti-LGBTQ Twitter rants come across as anything but friendly and Christian

Take people like Caroline Farrow, a priest’s wife, who believes that a person’s gender is biological and immutable.

Which is perfectly fine and everyone is entitled to an opinion etc etc.

But the anti-LGBTQ Twitter rants of the staunch Catholic Mrs. Farrow come across as anything but friendly and Christian.

Why a married mother of five would be so upset by such a small portion of the nation, people she never has to interact with if she chooses to, is truly baffling.

Mermaids — by no means a perfect organization, but one that does its best to help trans children and their families — has saved countless lives.

Sporting fairness aside, will the stigma against trans people ever end?

boiling point


So MADONNA will probably not follow up on Lorraine with her new album.

“She looks like a boiled egg,” said the Scottish presenter on her show yesterday.

Nothing beats a place of female solidarity.

Desperate for Attention – 18-19

right laugh

Well, that sounds like a real laugh.

A remake of Lady Chatterley’s Lover, below, appropriately ran in 2022 (pronounced woke).

Give me a throaty jaunt over Gamekeeper Mellors reading James Joyce


Give me a throaty jaunt over Gamekeeper Mellors reading James Joyce

Gamekeeper Mellors is apparently “intellectually elevated and spends nights alone reading James Joyce” while bonding with Constance over “newly hatched pheasant chicks”. (Not a euphemism).

According to a review in The Times, “So it’s an emotionally sophisticated union and not just a throaty outing.”

Give me a throaty jaunt about Joyce any day of the week.

Horror is part of life

Yesterday was Mental Health Day.

The government unit responsible for improving national health policy has unveiled a new campaign urging people to be “kind to your opinion” to mark it.

According to The Office for Health Improvement and Disparities, which sounds straight out of Orwell’s 1984, the “Sunday creeps” affect more than two-thirds of Britons.

They are now offering people a personalized “mind plan” and tips on how to deal with Sunday night-induced anxiety.

Obviously, it’s great that the so-called “bad party” is trying to help us be collectively kinder to ourselves. BUT . . . the Sunday Night Blues have always existed.

No doubt cavemen were panicking about where their next woolly mammoth would come from or how they would heat their caves amid an energy crisis, especially in the cold winter.

I used to get psychosomatic headaches every Sunday afternoon, so I feared double math or impending doom for not doing my homework.

Low anxiety is part of life. Trials, driving tests, lovesickness – they all contribute, and without them we would never know what it is to be human. To be fallible and vulnerable.

I’m afraid by naming something so fundamentally normal we are giving the next generation a get-out clause and trivializing those with very real and sometimes serious mental health issues.

Don’t bite the hand that feeds


NOT all young Harry Potter cast members are spoiled, ungrateful little brats.

It turns out that Tom Felton, who ironically played villain Draco Malfoy, is the true hero of the pack.

While castmates are quick to turn on author JK Rowling for her divisive trans views, Tom refuses to bite off the hand that fed him.

“No one has single-handedly done more to bring joy to so many different generations and walks of life,” he said.

“I am constantly reminded of her positive work in this area and as a person.”

A master class in brilliantly handling a delicate subject. Strictly Come Dancing is rotten to the core – tears, bullying and affairs make it Hunger Games in full swing


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