ENTERTAINMENT

'Strictly Come Dancing': Susan Calman And Kevin Clifton Dismiss Brendan Cole's Call For Handicap Scoring System

'It would make you feel terrible.'

25/11/2017 17:54 GMT

‘Strictly Come Dancing’ contestant Susan Calman and her professional partner Kevin Clifton have dismissed Brendan Cole’s suggestion a handicap system should be introduced in the judges’ scoring.

Following his and Charlotte Hawkins’ elimination from the competition last month, Brendan went on record to say he believes the format should be tweaked to make it fairer for those who don’t have prior dance experience. 

BBC
Susan Calman and Kevin Clifton

He suggested the judges should handicap those like Alexandra Burke and Debbie McGee with their marks, which would give those like Charlotte and Susan more of chance to stay on the show longer. 

However, Susan has said this idea would make her feel “terrible”, telling HuffPost UK: ”‘Strictly’ isn’t a dance competition. It isn’t ‘So You Think You Can Dance?’ or ‘Come Dancing’ - it’s an entertainment show. 

“It’s been shown year after year that the public vote for their favourite dancers, so it’s not about dancing.”

She continued: “If I came into the competition, it is difficult enough when you are faced with incredible dancers, it would make you feel terrible. 

“The point of ‘Strictly’ is that it’s a beautiful mish-mash of people who can dance and people who can’t, and about what you do for 90 seconds on the floor on a Saturday night. It shouldn’t change - it doesn’t need to. 

“The viewing figures are higher than they’ve ever been and people are loving what’s been happening.”

BBC
Susan and Kevin have become surprise favourites with the public

Kevin was in agreement, adding: “It does come down to the people voting, and that’s what people forget. People are voting for who they like watching the most. They not necessarily have to vote for who is the best technically, they choose who they want to keep watching. 

“You don’t really need [the handicap] because that’s what the audience vote is for. If it was just a dance competition based on who’s the best, there would be no audience vote. It would just go on the judges scores and whoever is bottom would be eliminated.”

During the interview, Susan also opened up about her friendship with J.K. Rowling, after the Harry Potter author was spotted in the audience supporting her last week. 

“We have a social media group - my little geek girl gang. We’ve been buddies for a few years and she’s an incredible support and a wonderful woman to know,” she said.

“When you’re in a show like this and there’s suddenly a lot of attention on you, there’s no better person to ask in the world about attention than J.K. Rowling. She’s tremendously supportive.

“She loves the show. I cannot tell you how many questions I get from them on a Monday morning about the show and the critiques of who’s done what.”

BBC
J.K. Rowling was spotted in the 'Strictly audience

Despite being a “superfan” of the show, Susan doesn’t believe her pal will follow her onto the ‘Strictly’ dance floor. 

After Kevin requested Susan to get J.K. to do it in 2018, she replied: “I don’t think she wants to do it next year. She would only do it if she could dance with you and do a Harry Potter number.”

Kevin laughed: “She sent me a collection of signed Harry Potter books, which was possibly the best day of my life.”

“I don’t have that!” Susan joked. “He got a signed collection, and I’m like, ‘I’m right here!’”

‘Strictly Come Dancing’ airs on Saturday and Sunday on BBC One. 

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