After 16 series of Strictly Come Dancing it’s now time for the introduction of same-sex pairings, but that doesn’t solely mean gay/bi contestants only
SO, for all you die-hard Strictly obsessive’s, the dance show that we all love (and some of us secretly love) is back on our TV screens again. However, this no doubt, brings back the question of when they programme is going to introduce same-sex pairings cos after all it was only last year we had a brief dance routine between AJ and Gorka and I don’t recall a negative backlash. Looking back at it I wonder why the film crew didn’t give us a couple of minutes extra of the two guys when they were dancing together. One of the arguments that I can imagine would be from people with out-dated, old-fashioned views constantly moaning about how wrong it’d be and that’d it’d give the children ideas. Another would be from religious zealots who would quite happily (and angrily) argue how it went against their so-called ‘religious beliefs’. But in all seriousness now, who would it actually be harming, apart from a (very) small narrow-minded minority? No-one in all likeliness.
On the American version of the show, Dancing with The Stars, contestant Nyle DiMarco, did a dance routine with a male dancer, and it did actually receive a positive response from both the audience and viewers alike.
In the Israeli version, Rokdim Im Kokhavim, sports broadcaster, Gili Shem Tov, was paired up with a female dancer called Dorit Milman. This was in the show’s sixth series and did it do the show any harm? Considering that it went on for another series I’d say no.
Most recently in the Italian version, Ballando con le Stelle, openly gay fashion designer and stylist, Giovanni Ciacci, was paired up with professional dancer, Raimondo Todaro. It was a move which proved ground-breaking cos first and foremost their producers had never considered it and as you’d predict it did cause some controversy but after a while, they won both the audience and country over. They even made it to the finals. Not bad at all.
So now that you know, all this begs the big question; when is the UK version of the show going to introduce same-sex pairings to the format?
No doubt there will be numerous people out there complaining that it would just be gay/bi celebrities paired up with dancers, along with of course, potentially rumours of s******g. Seriously, when does that not happen to the couples who are rumoured by certain tabloid types to be ‘getting closer’. I mean seriously, get a bloody life for god’s sake.
But if we are going to bring celebrities from the LGBT+ community into this let’s look at who they have; Susan Calman, Julian Clarey, Scott Mills, Mark Foster, Russell Grant, Will Young, Judge Rinder and Dr Ranj Singh. Now all these were paired up with dancers of the opposite-sex, no same-sex pairings at all. And yes, I admit that Susan Calman was rumoured to have said that her dream pairing was with Kevin Clifton.
Even Craig Revel-Horwood, who’s the BBC equivalent to Simon Cowell’s Mr Nasty and Shirley Ballas have stated that even they would back the decision. The BBC, however, said in a statement that they would be open to the suggestion in the future. In more basic terms I think that probably means that we would all have to wait until they have finally grown a pair before they actually do it. Well You have had sixteen series and you are about to go into your seventeenth, what is there that is possibility stopping? apart from a small handful of angry letters from outrage parent, religious zealots and narrow-minded idiots who still probably haven’t quite got past seeing gay kisses on TV since the 80’s.
In all fairness there is probably nothing to stop them bringing in the introduction but I can imagine as with all these types of changes that they would probably have to wait for word from above. But until then there is nothing that says that we shouldn’t stop suggesting the idea to them, I mean after all, seeing two men dance together or two women dance together is hardly going to harm anyone no is it.