Les Dennis and Nancy Xu Tango perform a tango
James Jordan has described Les Dennis’ Strictly Come Dancing debut with Nancy Xu as “stompy” and “really poor”, claiming that he’d made “lots of mistakes”.
In spite of that, the 45-year-old is keen for him to progress further in the competition – but has stressed that there is a serious need for improvement.
Critiquing Les, 69, in the first of his Strictly: The Truth video diary series for Hello! magazine, he made it clear that his version of the tango, in time with The Human League’s Don’t You Want Me, wasn’t what he’d hoped.
“As much as I love him, it was really poor and you can’t compare his dance to someone like [fellow contestant and newsreader] Krishnan [Guru-Murthy],” James began.
“Technically [his performance with pro Lauren Oakley] wasn’t much better than [Les and Nancy’s], but [Krishnan] threw himself into it more.”
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James continued: “I know it’s a totally different dance and tango is more serious, but Krishnan entertained.
“I love [Les] and I love watching [him] and want him to do well, but for me it wasn’t great, wasn’t that entertaining,” he declared.
“He was a bit stompy, his posture wasn’t good, his timing wasn’t great, he made lots of mistakes on steps.”
In spite of that, the former Strictly finalist concluded that Les was “one of the people that I want to stay in the competition for a long time”.
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“I want to see if he can improve week after week. I don’t want him to go yet,” he lamented.
Les wasn’t alone in receiving less than complimentary criticism, after radio presenter Nikita Kanda and pro dancer Gorka Marquez’s waltz didn’t meet with James’ approval either.
He exclaimed: “Waltz is one of the easiest dances to make look good on the show… but in comparison to everyone else, [Nikita] was bottom of the leaderboard.”
He added that, like judge Craig Revel-Horwood, he would have given her a score of just three out of ten for her efforts – and hopes that she and Gorka, whom he described as one of his favourite pro dancers, can improve.
Meanwhile, Les and Nancy attracted attention for the wrong reasons after the public noticed that the latter had blood pouring down her neck and chin just after his debut dance.
The accident came just hours after Les dropped Nancy in a presumably heart-pounding moment during the dress-rehearsal.
The 2018 finalist Joe Sugg had revealed all during his official Access All Areas podcast, confiding: “Let’s just say the dress rehearsal for Les didn’t quite go as planned.
“Right at the end of the dress run there was a dip at the end and Les did the dip and sort of followed through with it and they both ended up on the floor laughing.”
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