Similar to Strictly Come Dancing (and a lot like the SCD on ice special), for the past few years, ITV have tried to create the same success with Dancing On Ice. Does it measure up to the giant that it is SCD? Well, it has consistently high ratings, although one could argue that there isn’t much competition in the Sunday evening slot. I feel that the format itself however has flaws. With SCD you have the different styles of dance and techniques, providing variety with each dance. With DOI, you only have skating…skating fast or slow. It feels like there is no structure, we just watch skating performances that are no different to any others. The judges on SCD are infinitely better – with the acerbic wit of Craig Revel Horwood, the traditional and granddad-like Len Goodman and the craziness of Bruno Tonoli. Compare that to DOI and you see that the judging panel doesn’t really match up. This year, Louis Spence has made an improvement to the panel – bringing personality and his experience in dance to the show, but overall, the ice panel just doesn’t sparkle. Katerina Witt was particular horrible saying that one skater should never attempt lifts because she is a “big girl”, which is completely unfair, and lifts are part of the skating routines. They are the parts that wins over the audience, no celebrity would ever win because they skate around the stage for 2 minutes. Christine Bleakly doesn’t suit the presenting role to DOI – she doesn’t have the same chemistry with Schofield that Holly Willoughby used to have with him, and she often looks uncomfortable on screen.
DOI will continue to be a ratings success for ITV for a few years to come but it just doesn’t match up to SCD. It feels like a poor man’s version of the BBC extravaganza. There are some talented skaters in Matthew Wolfenden, Jorgie Porter, and Sebastien Moran (with his rolling around on the ice) but it lacks the spark that SCD has.