Strictly Come Dancing 2018: viewers react to the new couples – and hot new pro dancer Graziano

Check out all the reactions to the Strictly 2018 launch show, and find out who the new favourites are after seeing the stars in action

Tess Daly, Vick Hope and Graziano Di Prima during the Strictly Come Dancing 2018 launch show (BBC)

Strictly Come Dancing 2018 is back – and with a whole new class of celebrities and some eye-catching new pro dancers, there’s plenty to talk about.

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Saturday night’s pre-recorded launch show saw the celebrities dancing in the Strictly ballroom for the very first time.

Viewers also found out those all-important couples, as the celebrities discovered who they would be dancing with this year.

Check out some of the best reactions from the night below.

Vick Hope nabs new hottie Graziano

With Brendan Cole leaving the show, Strictly needed a new pro to plug the gap. But who could it be? Say hello to Graziano di Prima

Quite the entrance, don’t you think?

Viewers had a lot of thoughts about Graziano, not all of them appropriate for a family show. But in the main, people seemed to be getting serious Game of Thrones vibes off the new recruit.

But which lucky celebrity would be partnered up with Graziano? That would be radio presenter Vick Hope.

Almost immediately viewers were touting them as potential favourites, and it’s not hard to see why.

If nothing else, their Halloween theme is surely a given now right?

Yet another predictable partner for Anton du Beke

Cast your eye down the Strictly celebrity list for this year. Now put money on who you think Anton will get.

Congratulations, you bet correct!

Yes, Anton and Susannah Constantine are now officially a couple – but the group dance didn’t exactly fill Anton fans with confidence.

Hey, let’s keep our hopes up – maybe we’re in for a surprise?

Reigning champ Katya is back to the comedy routines

Last year Katya Jones secured the Strictly Glitterball with Joe McFadden, but this year she may have to take a little more inspiration from her previous year coaching Ed Balls.

She was partnered up with comedian Seann Walsh, and viewers were intrigued to see her choreography skills put to the test once again.

The early signs however are that they will could be firm favourites among the Strictly voters, so maybe this journey has a way to go yet…

Susan Calman gives Stacey and Kevin her blessing

Documentary presenter Stacey Dooley and pro favourite Kevin Clifton were very, very excited to be partnered up together. Hyper doesn’t quite cover it.

But even though some viewers felt they could do with toning it down a bit, frankly only one person’s opinion matters when it comes to Kevin’s future partner. That person is Susan Calman.

Last year’s pair were so close that Susan even had a tattoo ‘I heart Grimsby’ made after her Strictly journey took her all the way to Blackpool, so whoever was coupled with with Kevin this year had a lot to live up to.

Luckily, Susan gave Stacey her blessing. Now, what does the future hold for Strictly’s new power couple?

‘Pashley’ looks a winner already – but is Ashley Roberts too good to be true?

Arguably one of the strongest partnerships of the night, Ashley Roberts and Pasha Kovalev are certainly ones to watch when the dancing begins in earnest.

They’ve even got a couple name that works straight out of the box.

However, among all the glitter and the lip gloss, there is the annual Strictly shadow: is Ashley too good a dancer already?

The Pussycat Dolls star had plenty of dancing experience thanks to her years in the girl band, and even went on to judge ITV’s Dancing on Ice.

Will viewers turn against her because of her dance history?

She has frequently explained that the style of ballroom in particular is something she’s wholly unfamiliar with, and that she like others will have to learn “a skill and a new style that I have never done before”, so it’s not quite as easy as saying she’s a certainty for the final.

With Pasha putting her through her paces, however, she definitely has a chance to go all the way.

Strictly now takes a two-week break to give the celebrities a chance to train with their pro dancer partners, with the first live show scheduled for Saturday 22nd September.

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Who else from the launch show caught your eye? Let us know on Twitter and Facebook, and keep checking RadioTimes.com for updates from training and the latest Strictly news.