Strictly Come Dancing 2013: Rachel Riley struggled with the “conviction” of the Paso Doble

by Nick Barnes

Strictly Come Dancing

This evening, Rachel Riley and her professional partner Pasha Kovalev danced the Paso Doble to ‘Maneater’ by Nelly Furtado. Earlier this week, the Countdown star said that she’s bad a mini breakdown this week over being in the dance-off last week.

The quickstep was a hard dance for Rachel last week and she didn’t keep up, she said in her VT so it was “utterly terrifying” to be in the dance floor. “I’m definitely going to come back fighting,” she said. The Paso Doble is a risk to do this week as it’s quite a strong dance and she needs to act… and she’s not an actress. In a bid to get her in the mood, Pasha brought an acting coach into rehearsals.

Last week, Rachel & Pasha scored a total of 26 point, but their dance lacked any sort of “quality” according to Len. Craig added that her top line let her down as it looked like she was being thrown around.

Each week, Rachel seems to go under some sort of transformation so that the end result doesn’t even look like her! The dance started with Pasha behind bars in some sort of weird cage and Rachel out on the dance floor on her own. It all seemed a little messy, though…

Strictly Come Dancing

Judges Comments

  • Len Goodman: “I feel bad because I know you’ve really worked hard and you’re coming out and you’re wanting to they your best. Unfortunately this wasn’t a dance that suits your personality as you had to come out with a lot of aggression – it didn’t quite work”.
  • Bruno Tonioli: “It’s hard being a man-eater… I can do it. You had all the content, but it was the vegetarian option. You needed the character to take over – you’re a nice girl, but forget the nice, you need to fight”.
  • Craig Revel Horwood: “There was so much tension in that. It was just too stiff. I didn’t find it compelling enough as you don’t dance it well enough alone. The kicks need finishing off, you need broader arms and shapes, it needed more balance. A little bit of a disaster”.
  • Darcey Bussell: “I can see you’ve worked so hard. It’s easier for the boy but it’s harder for a girl to have that conviction. I know you’ve worked hard but it needed to be crisper and sharper”


Both Rachel & Pasha received a combined score of 22 with a 4 from Craig Revel Horwood, a 6 from Darcey Bussell, a 6 from Len Goodman and a 6 from Bruno Tonioli.

Strictly Come Dancing continues tomorrow evening at 7:20pm 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