Words: Alastair James; pictures: BBC and Instagram/@john_whaite
Strictly Come Dancing‘s John Whaite and Johannes Radebe have proven themselves an exceptional dance couple scoring a near-perfect score in week three of the competition – the highest score of the series so far!
The show’s first all-male pair danced a phenomenal Paso Doble to Hans Zimmer’s Pirates of the Caribbean theme tune (which is also phenomenal in its own right) as part of Movies week and were awarded 39 our 40 from the judges.
Actress Katie McGlynn, known for her roles in Coronation Street and Waterloo Road, became the second contestant to leave the ballroom after being beaten in the dance-off against comedian and TV personality Judi Love.
“The best thing I’ve seen all night”
John and Johannes (or “team JoJo as they’ve been called by some) were given the difficult challenge of rounding up the show on Saturday (9 October) and they did so in dramatic fashion. It follows two good weeks for the pair, who’ve won high scores for their Tango in week 1 and their Cha Cha Cha the week after.
Starting the number atop a real-life-looking ship mast, John recreated Jack Sparrow’s entrance from the first Pirates film as the mast seemingly sank into the dancefloor.
What followed was an epic Paso, perfectly matching the music with both men switching roles seamlessly, in perfect sync and without fault. To end the number the pair leapt either side of a cannon which promptly fired glittering confetti into the air in a suitably camp but celebratory climax.
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As the pair embraced following the number, judges Shirley Ballas and Motsi Mabuse were on their feet as were John’s fellow competitors and the professionals.
Anton Du Beke called the dance, “the best thing I’ve seen all night,” which is a worthy remark especially given some of the dances seen earlier in the night.
John and Johannes were complimented on their strength, shape, form, with the usually hard to impress Craig Revel-Horwood describing it as “hot,” and admitting to have not made any notes whatsoever!
With such notes, it was no wonder the pair were awarded three tens and a nine (the latter coming from Craig, which upset some fans given the lack of actual criticism!) putting them at the top of week’s leaderboard two points ahead of Rhys Stephenson and Nancy Xu who scored 37 for their Couple’s Choice.
Posting on social media after the weekend shows John paid tribute to Johannes saying, “it’s truly an honour to be learning from him and spending so much time with him.”
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While Team JoJo didn’t get a perfect 40 (Looking at you Craig!) they’re winners in our eyes for flying the rainbow flag so brilliantly! We’d have given them tens, tens, tens, tens across the board!
John, who won The Great British Bake Off in 2013, and Johannes, who are both gay, are the show’s first male same-sex couple and follow in the footsteps of Olympic boxer Nicola Adams and professional Katya Jones, who became the first same-sex couple ever on the show last year. Sadly they had to leave the competition after Katya tested positive for Covid-19.
The episode also saw Johannes dance with fellow professional Kai Widdrington in a beautiful Regency-era set dance, which opened the show.
Watch the John and Johannes’s full Paso Doble routine below:
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