Strictly Come Dancing 2013: Natalie Gumede tops Unreality TV’s leaderboard!

by Nick Barnes

Strictly Come Dancing Natalie Gumede

We’ve had the scores from the judges, the votes are in and the result has already been determined. However, last night there was a bit of dodgy scoring going on from the judges of Strictly Come Dancing.

Even though we saw the highest score of the series so far come from last night’s Blackpool spectacular, we’re still not convinced that some of the scores were on point. So, on that note, welcome to Unreality TV’s very own Strictly Come Dancing leaderboard.

As much as we love Susanna Reid, the clear winner of the night was Natalie Gumede. After having such a dreadful weekend last week, Natalie came out on top on last night’s show and really showed us how much of an amazing dancer she is. A lot thought it was a farce that she had last week’s episode off, but with the talk of epidurals and painkillers strong enough to knock an elephant out, all I can say is… Rather her than me! Susanna came a very close second on the leaderboard. The middle of the leaderboard on last night’s show got a little bit jumbled, but the latter end seemed to be correct.

Here goes… check out how we thought the leaderboard should have gone last night.

Strictly Come Dancing Ben Cohen

1. Natalie Gumede & Artem Chigvintsev – Natalie came out fighting last night and gave it everything she had. It’s safe to say that Natalie is one of the more seasoned and serious dancers in the competition (compare her to Dave Myers and you’ll catch my drift). I think Craig really let the team down last night by only scoring Natalie a 9 as she deserved 10s across the board for her spectacular, Great Gatsby-inspired Charleston. The only thing I’d fault with the dance is the hair… it didn’t work. The performance was full of energy, character and charisma.

2. Susanna Reid & Kevin Clifton – Susanna Reid is the dark horse of this series and is definitely one to watch. When she started off eight weeks ago, I wasn’t sure that she would last until the half way point, but she’s surpassed that now and I think she’ll easily make it to the final. Each week Susanna seems to improve and last night’s Paso Doble was full of fire and OOMPH! I’d have still given her the 39 points.

3. Ashley Taylor Dawson & Ola Jordan – I think Ashley was unfairly treated last night only coming fifth on the leaderboard. He scored a total of 35 points, which is still very high, but I’d have given him higher marks. Visually the cape and the cowboy outfit didn’t work, I’ll hold my hands out with that one. However, this week the performance was full of character and we saw a masculine, serious side to Ashley and let’s face it, Ashley is more of a cheeky chappy than anything else. He also dances very well out of hold and his timing in the middle mirroring section was impeccable. Therefore, Ashley scores a little higher on our leaderboard.

4. Sophie Ellis-Bextor & Brendan Cole – This is the one performance of the night that I really had to question the judges on. Sophie performed a brilliant Quickstep on last night’s show but ended up in the bottom four in terms of the leaderboard. The dance deserved to be a lot higher as it was fast, it had life, it was full of character and those lifts were absolutely brilliant. I’m not sure what it was the judges were getting at last night but I don’t think in any way that Sophie will be in trouble on tonight’s show.

5. Ben Cohen & Kristina Rihanoff – Oh come on, Ben is a big guy and he carries himself so well each week. He may not have the flexibility of Ashley Taylor Dawson or Natalie Gumede, but that’s the way the show goes. Last night, Big Ben was back in town and his competitive spirit also seemed to make an appearance. His American Smooth was romantic and well… very smooth. There may have been one or two hitches in the footwork and his top line throughout the performance but I think he deserved to get a bit of a higher score last night as it was one of his best performances of this series so far. Ben is another like Abbey, we all know who he is but I feel he may be falling into the crowd a little bit.

7. Patrick Robinson & Anya Garnis – Last night Patrick Robinson showed us all how to dance when we reach his age. One of the things I noticed is that he can still swing those hips. Patrick is a great dancer, but I feel that there was something missing from the dance last night. The pair recovered very well from Anya’s wardrobe malfunction last night when she got her heel caught in her dress, and the breakdown near the end in which he danced out of hold was brilliant. But, I feel like some of the footwork was a little off.

6. Abbey Clancy & Aljaz Skorjanec – Abbey Clancy isn’t standing out enough in the crowd like Susanna and Natalie are. She has the talent, she can definitely dance, but she isn’t sticking in my head as the weeks go by. After watching last night’s performance back again, there’s no denying that she performed a great Quickstep but there was so much gapping in between her and Aljaz. The footwork may be been good, but the gapping and her arms at times just let the performance down. It may well have been lively and energetic, but that’s not what always makes a good dance. Could Abbey be in trouble on tonight’s results show?

8. Fiona Fullerton & Anton Du Beke – I think Fiona is just chugging along in the competition at the moment. She’s like an old car that is on the verge of a breakdown, but you just don’t know when. She could possibly survive another week this week as she has been doing every other week. I’ve mentioned it a few times in this article about some celebrities just falling in with the crowd and not being noticed. That hasn’t been so much of a hinderance for Fiona as I think that has helped her to sail through each week and not be given the boot yet. Last night’s dance just felt a little sub-standard, there were a few footwork errors and her top line was a little off. I feel for Fiona as she putting her all into it every week and you can see in rehearsals that she’s loving her time on the show, but technically speaking, she should be in trouble this week. However, since she fell into the crowd again last night, it might just be the case that she makes it through.

9. Mark Benton & Iveta Lukosiute – For me, this week it’d be the turn of Mark Benton to be given the boot. He’s falling behind all the other dancers in the competition and his dances aren’t technically up to scratch. Plus, the wardrobe department always dress him in the most ridiculous clothes. The Tango was one of the hardest dances Mark has danced on this series so far and I applaud him for that as he made it through. But, he’s looking tired at the moment and I’m not sure how much puff is left in him. His footwork wasn’t on point last night and his shape/lines weren’t working for me either. Unfortunately, I feel Mark was the worst of the bunch last night.

So, there you have it, Unreality TV’s Strictly Come Dancing 2013 leader board. Do you agree or disagree with the celebrity placings from last night? As you can see, some of them have been shifted around as the likes of Sophie and Ben were unfairly treated with the scores last night, but other than that, I think the top 2 and the bottom 2 were spot.

Strictly Come Dancing continues this evening at 7:20pm with the all important results on BBC One.

Nick Barnes

Nick is the Assistant Editor at Unreality TV, along with being a full-time Beyoncé obsessor! Email him at or catch him on Twitter @ImNickBarnes


  1. XFF on November 18, 2013 at 2:55 am

    I thought Saturday’s Strictly was excellent – the best of the series so far – but the scoring was all over the place. I agree that Sophie was under-marked, as she managed to raise her performance level, which is what the judges have been banging on about. Similarly, I didn’t think that Mark’s dance deserved 3×8’s. I really enjoyed Abbey and Aljaz’s routine, but I don’t know how it got 3×10’s when there were obvious mistakes. Whilst Craig was stingier than ever, I think the other judges got a bit over excited with the whole Blackpool thing, and were whipping their 10’s out every 5 minutes!

  2. Sophie on November 18, 2013 at 7:20 am

    Patrick was undermarked but I’m not complaining. He’s just behind the leaders on ability alone but he has shown the most improvement. I see him as a surprise winner this year. People will not vote for Natalie and Susanna is nothing special.

  3. nick on November 19, 2013 at 5:50 pm

    Abbey Clancy is my favourite for the finals.

    so everyone VOTE!! for Abbey&Aljaz.

  4. patrick howard on December 15, 2013 at 7:45 pm

    what is happening. The Great British public strikes again, in what reality is Susanne a better dancer than Natalie, I watched with disbelief when Susanne went through to the final and Natalie was put into the dance off, susannes dances were full of mistakes her second dances looked as if it was performed with lead boots on. Yet she goes to the final. This competition should be judged on dance ability not personality.

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