A burst of joy... with Anton the one-man HRT patch: JAN MOIR reviews Strictly Come Dancing

A burst of joy... with Anton the one-man HRT patch: JAN MOIR reviews Strictly Come Dancing

Viewers certainly weren’t put off by Strictly Come Dancing’s new pandemic-era format when the show finally returned to the screen on Saturday. The audience was the biggest for a launch show since 2017. Clearly looking for some light relief from the doom and gloom, an average of 8.6million watched this year’s celebrities get partnered up with the professionals, with a peak of 9million. This is a significant increase from 2019’s average of 7.8million, while the 2018 launch show attracted 8.1million viewers. Hostesses Claudia Winkleman and Tess Daly were socially distanced, but the dancers had created bubbles earlier. Strictly Come Dancing returned on Saturday night, providing a joyous burst of fun for viewers starved of sparkle and gagging for glitter. Amid the cultural desert of thrill-sucking Covid, this homecoming seemed particularly opportune; a dear old friend rising up from the schedules like a twinkling mirage, an Emerald City of all that is pretty and fun. Indeed, there were moments when I had to rub my eyes at the utter marvel of it all, including hostess Claudia Winkleman shuffling on in what looked like Liberace’s crumpled old jim-jams; her drumsticks no doubt crisping nicely under the excess yardage of pink-tinged tinfoil. Sidekick Tess Daly was not to be outdone, and came dressed as Perdita in 101 Dalmatians. Why? Perhaps in tribute to the fact that she is always so spotty at remembering her lines. Tess, I mean. Not the dog. ‘It has been a tough year. Are you going ...
More on: www.dailymail.co.uk