Strictly's Helen Skelton says rumors of a fix are 'so funny' as some claim she's got the upper hand, after her dancing past was revealed.
The Strictly 2022 contestants haven't even taken to the dancefloor yet, but already there's consternation among the show's devoted following. Said following are so serious about Strictly 2022 that even the mere suggestion of unfairness in the competition leaves them incandescent with rage.
What it all comes down to this year is claims made by contestant Helen Skelton who made some bold claims while appearing on BBC Radio 5. She said, "People keep saying, 'Can you dance?' And I say, ‘No’ because isn’t it the point to learn to dance?" Such a statement wouldn't ordinarily cause a fuss but some cried foul after a 2016 interview with The Sun (opens in new tab) was unearthed, revealing that this isn't her first experience on a dancing competition.
💪 @HelenSkelton's next big challenge: bringing the splits back for #Strictly! pic.twitter.com/upjO9qqGOUSeptember 7, 2022
The former Blue Peter host told the publication, “I won a Ken Dodd tap-dance award when I was 17. Not a lot of people know this, but I’m very good at tap dancing. People are often amazed I can tap dance."
Speaking on the ITV chat show Lorraine, shortly after the Strictly 2022 trailer dropped, Helen responded to the consternation over her past. Laughing, she said, “I found it so funny when they said it was a fix – Helen’s a tap dancing champion. When I was seven, yes, I did tap dancing.”
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The star added, “Like lots of little girls and boys, I did dancing and absolutely loved it. Hit an age where I didn't want to be in a leotard in public and I gave it up. I wish I hadn't.”
Lorraine Kelly, host of the eponymous chat show, pointed out that the show doesn't generally feature tap dancing, to which Helen cheekily responded, “Well, you never know. If there is, that’s my week.”
Helen's fans were quick to leap to her defense, with one fan tweeting, "Being able to tap dance doesn’t mean you’re the best dancer at ballroom. I hope Helen Skelton does really well and shame on the media for being ridiculous as always."
Aoife is Junior News Editor at woman&home.
She's an Irish journalist and writer with a background in creative writing, comedy, and TV production.
Formerly Aoife was a contributing writer at Bustle and her words can be found in the Metro, Huffpost, Delicious, Imperica, EVOKE and her poetry features in the Queer Life, Queer Love anthology.
Outside of work you might bump into her at a garden center, charity shop, hot yoga studio, lifting heavy weights, or (most likely) supping/eating some sort of delicious drink/meal.
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