Why the first week of Strictly Come Dancing is always the best

Forget Blackpool, forget the final, Strictly's opening episode is the one you shouldn't miss, says Ellie Walker-Arnott

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When you think about Strictly Come Dancing, crisp, chilly Saturdays, dark, drawn out evenings and festive cheer quickly spring to mind.

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As well as glitter and bronzed bodies, obviously.

What doesn’t so naturally associate itself with BBC1’s hit dancing competition is late summer, still weeks away from Halloween, bonfire night or the first note of a Christmas carol.

That’s because the early weeks can feel a little unmemorable – I’m sure even the most dedicated Strictly fans would struggle to name any of the celebrities who fell at the first public vote. 

It’s easier to get caught up in the theatrics of it all later in the series when the public have grown attached to the remaining competitors and you can spend each weekend rooting for your chosen celeb.

But you’d be a fool to miss out on all those first forays onto the dance floor. Because the first week is actually the best.

It’s the only time when you really don’t know what to expect as each nervous famous face takes to the dance floor. Next week there are expectations. And let’s not forget that in week two things also get that bit nastier as one of the wannabe foxtrotters has to hang up their dancing shoes.

Week one is just about a group of glitter-covered celebrities trying their very, very hardest to be good at dancing.

And you can’t help but get caught up in their enthusiasm for it, with no real need to pass judgement, offer up your own criticism or reach out for the phone and vote.

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What time is Strictly Come Dancing on? Friday at 9:00pm and Sturday at 6:20pm on BBC1

Strictly Come Dancing week one: song and dance list revealed

More Strictly news and interviews with all this year’s celebrity contestants… 


Robin Windsor, Alex Jones and Sir Bruce Forsyth will be at the Radio Times Festival this weekend. Tickets are available here.