Strictly Come Dancing returned to Blackpool’s famous Tower Ballroom on Saturday night, with Angela Rippon experiencing a full circle moment.
The television presenter, 79, took to the dancefloor with her partner Kai Widdrington after hosting the original version of the show, Come Dancing, in the Eighties and Nineties.
The duo danced the American Smooth to Tea for Two by Ella Fitzgerald, scoring 28 points out of a possible 40, despite fans having raised complaints that she never seems to be given any fast dances.
Angela’s appearance at the Tower Ballroom was hanging in the balance when she found herself in the bottom two for a second time last week.
After failing to impress the public she was saved once again by the judges, despite her suffering a near fall during her Paso Doble.
Strictly Come Dancing returned to Blackpool’s famous Tower Ballroom on Saturday night, with Angela Rippon, 79, experiencing a full circle moment
She’s bacK: The television presenter took to the dancefloor with her partner Kai Widdrington with duo dancing the American Smooth to Tea for Two by Ella Fitzgerald
The first Come Dancing programme was aired in 1950 and presented by Peter Dimmock, with Leslie Mitchell as the master of ceremonies.
Angela joined as a presenter a few years later alongside the likes of Terry Wogan, Judith Chalmers, David Jacobs, and Rosemarie Ford.
Come Dancing ended in 1998. However the success of the film Strictly Ballroom rekindled interest in dance and so, in 2004, Strictly Come Dancing aired on BBC.
The presenter came under fire last week after she sent Krishnan Guru-Murthy home in her second dance off.
Angela and Kai won the majority vote keeping them in the competition, but head judge Shirley Ballas said she would have decided to save Krishnan and Lauren.
Judge Craig Revel Horwood said: ‘Well Krishnan you really upped your game in that dance off, it was magnificent. Angela you nearly lost your supporting leg darling in the kick but you saved it, miraculously.
‘But the couple that I would like to save and go through to Blackpool is Angela and Kai.’
While Shirley said: ‘Well I picked the person that I felt was more grounded on their feet without any technical errors and I would have saved Krishnan & Lauren.’
Wow: The presenter returned to the seaside resort after hosting the original version of the show, Come Dancing, in the Eighties and Nineties (pictured in 1988)
Drama: It comes after Angela came under fire last week after she was saved in the dance off in a performance which saw her suffer a near fall during her Paso Doble
Raging: Strictly Come Dancing fans accused the show of being a ‘fix’ after Krishnan Guru-Murthy was sent home on Sunday night
Fix: But viewers at home fumed at the decision to save Angela and accused the show of ‘favouritism,’ arguing that her slip up should have sent her home
But viewers at home fumed at the decision and accused the show of ‘favouritism’ towards Angela, arguing that her slip up should have sent her home, but that bosses wanted to ensure the TV presenter made it to Blackpool next week.
One person tweeted: ‘Sorry this is such a fix. How can you say “angela, you literally almost fell over. Krishnan you were significantly better but i’m still gonna save angela?” This is such a fix. Never agreed with shirley before wtf is going on.’
Another echoed: ‘At this point I feel like Angela could have stood there for the whole song and she would have still made it through. For once I agree with Shirley, Krishnan was better.’
The previous week saw Angela saved from the dance off as the contestants reached the halfway point of the competition.
The broadcaster, was forced to go head to head with Adam Thomas and Luba Mushtuk in the dance off with all four judges choosing to save Angela and her partner Kai.
Yet despite the unanimous decision, fans were left fuming that the ‘wrong person’ went home after the fearsome showdown between the two couples.
Appearing on It Takes Two with host Fleur East afterwards, Angela opened up about how it was ‘tough’ going up against Adam in the dance off.
As Fleur asked her whether she was nervous to go up against Adam to fight for a place in the competition, Andrea explained that the show is really toughening up and nobody is safe.
‘I think the situation we’re in at the moment is the pool is getting so small now, there’s only eight of us now. If there are only going to be three people in the final then every week it gets tougher and someone is going to be the one who is going to be eliminated.
Bittersweet: The previous week saw Angela saved from the dance off as the contestants reached the halfway point of the competition
‘What was tough about it is Adam is such a lovely guy. We all absolutely adore him, we’ve all become great friends.
‘When you are the other person in the dance-off, you know you are going to battle it out with someone who’s become a mate. It’s tough, it is tough.’
Yet Angela confessed she also saw the positives in getting to redo her routine, as she explained: ‘Oh it was really upsetting. I was cross with myself because clearly I hadn’t done everything that Kai had been drumming into me in the week.
‘At the same time the upside is we got to dance it again. It was lovely to be able to do it again.’
Strictly 2023: Week Nine Leaderboard
Layton Williams and Nikita Kuzmin – Couple’s Choice to Ain’t No Other Man by Christina Aguilera – 39 points out of 40
Ellie Leach and Vito Coppola – Charleston to Love Machine by Girls Aloud –
Nigel Harman and Katya Jones – Quickstep to It Don’t Mean A Thing If It Ain’t Got That Swing by Duke Ellington –
Angela Scanlon and Carlos Gu – Argentine Tango to Black To Black by Amy Winehouse –
Bobby Brazier and Dianne Buswell – Jive to Wake Me Up Before You Go Go by Wham! – 35 points out of 40
Angela Rippon and Kai Widdrington – American Smooth to Tea for Two by Ella Fitzgerald – 28 points out of 40
Annabel Croft and Johannes Radebe – American Smooth to Unchained Melody by Benedetta Caretta –