Strictly has revealed it's first celebrity to be sent home comp image of Nikita and Gorka and Nancy and Les

Strictly sends home first celebrity – and surprised fans insist: ‘Right decision’

No one wants to be the first out

Strictly Come Dancing has sent its first celebrity home after a dance off between two couples. The judges then picked their favourite, leaving one couple’s dance journey over.

After week one with no vote off, the second week saw the dreaded bottom two announced by hosts Tess Daly and Claudia Winkleman.

But who ended up in the bottom two? And who did the Strictly judges – Motsi Mabuse, Craig Revel Horwood, Anton Du Beke and Head Judge, Shirley Ballas – send home?

Nancy Xu and Les Dennis salute during their Strictly dance routine
Les had found himself bottom of the leaderboard (Credit: BBC)

Who was in the dance-off on this week’s Strictly Come Dancing?

The judges’ scores this week were added to those from last week, and were then combined with the results of the viewers’ votes to decide the lowest scoring two couples facing the dance off.

This weekend, Les Dennis and his partner Nancy Xu faced Nikita Kanda and Gorka Márquez in the dance off. Les then became the first contestant to leave Strictly Come Dancing 2023.

Both couples performed their routines again; Nikita and Gorka performed their Charleston to Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It) by Beyoncé. Then, Les and Nancy performed their Samba to Rock The Boat by Hues Corporation.

After both couples had danced a second time, the judges delivered their verdicts. Craig Revel Horwood chose to save Nikita and Gorka, saying he thought they were “the most improved”.

Motsi Mabuse also chose to save Nikita and Gorka, once again saying they were “extremely better in the dance off”.

Anton Du Beke chose to save Nikita and Gorka. And it was a clean sweep as Head Judge Shirley also agreed.

Tess Daly talks to Les Dennis and Nancy Xu
It was Les’s time to go (Credit: BBC)

Les says goodbye to Strictly after being the first celebrity voted off

When asked by Tess about their time on the show, Les said: “I’ve had the best time, this lady has been amazing, a great teacher, she’s really put me through my paces. I did as well as I could for you, I hope!”

He then continued: “That lot up there, I’m going to miss you so much. I really appreciate and understand the judge’s point of view, thank you so much [to Shirley] for giving me a 10 for entertainment. I hope I’ve entertained, that’s what I came here for. Strictly is the best and the people who put this on, you’re just all amazing!”

Nancy then told Les they had had a journey and she respects him “so, so much”.

Amanda Abbington gives Les Dennis a hug on Strictly
Les’s co-stars gave him a fond farewell (Credit: BBC)

Fans react

Those watching at home were not really surprised by the bottom two. But some were surprised to see Les go home, feeling he added entertainment value.

Amongst many cries of “right decision” some felt sad for Les’s departure.

“Wow didn’t expect him to go that early,” said one. “Wooooooah I am utterly surprised. I genuinely thought he’d be in for weeks,” shared another.

Someone else said: “Wow, that’s actually surprised me thought Les would get through at least one round of voting.”

“Personally quite sad, but definitely the right and fair decision,” agreed one more. “He seems like a nice bloke but it was the right decision. Even a short stay on something like Strictly raises your profile though so I’m sure he will be fine about it!” added another.

Read more: Strictly fans furious with Shirley’s remarks to Nigel Harman

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Strictly Come Dancing continues next Saturday (October 7) at 6.20pm on BBC One.

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Carena Crawford
Associate Editor (Soaps)