Was the BBC right to axe Brendan Cole from Strictly?
PUBLISHED: 17:37 30 January 2018 | UPDATED: 09:27 31 January 2018
Norwich Theatre Royal
For 13 years and 15 series he has been a fixture of autumnal Saturday night TV but Brendan Cole will not be returning to Strictly Come Dancing in September.
The BBC has axed the original bad boy of ballroom, but was it right to? Two Strictly Come Dancing super fans share their conflicting views on the dancer’s departure.
Jessica Long - He is the spirit of Strictly
The powers that be have decided that Brendan Cole’s time on Strictly Come Dancing is now over.
Now as a fan of the show since day dot I have come accustom to some of my favourite professional dancers leaving the show, although Lilia Kopylova’s axing is still a sore point nearly eight years on.
But Brendan’s departure feels a little different.
He has been on the show since it first aired and like Anton Du Beke, was one of the first professional dancers to become a star in his own right.
Whether it was the rumours surrounding his relationship with Natasha Kaplinsky, his back chat to the judges or storming off set when the judges had torn into his celebrity partner - his personality and passion for what he did got the viewers talking just as much as his superb dancing.
And despite watching this for 15 series, I am not ready to see the back of Brendan.
I looked forward to seeing what he has to say to the judges, I looked forward to watching his antics in the Clauditorium and I looked forward to seeing the routines he created for his partners.
And from the outpouring of support from fans, fellow dancers and former partners, I’m not alone in thinking this.
Now I know the show needs to change and fresh faces need to come in but I fear with the departure of Brendan, the show will miss a certain spirit.
The professional dancers are what set Strictly apart from similar shows and the BBC need to keep the personalities that have helped make the show the juggernaut it is. And I can’t think of many others who have done that like Brendan.
He deserves more respect and a better send off.
I can only hope the likes of Anton Du Beke do not see the same end to their Strictly journey.
Emily Revell - Bye Brendan and it’s time for Anton to go
As a Strictly devotee I’ve watched the show since day one and along the way we’ve lost lots of my favourite professional dancers.
Today the news broke that Brendan Cole has not had his contract renewed for the next series.
While I am a little disappointed in the way it seems to have been handled - I would rather he had chosen to walk away, instead of being forced out because that’s not nice for anyone - I was never a fan.
I fleetingly warmed to him when he partnered Sophie Ellis-Bextor but I won’t miss him when the next series comes round.
We’ve lost professionals that I’ve grieved for far more (Aliona Vilani, Artem Chigvintsev, Natalie Lowe and of course Lilia Kopylova and Darren Bennett, to name but a few).
It’s a little sad to wave goodbye to one of the last remaining original pros, but perhaps it’s time for Brendan to move on as the newer pros have definitely injected a new lease of life into the show in recent years.
The only remaining question is, when will they finally get rid of Anton?
• Do you think the BBC was right to axe Brendan? Let us know in the comments below.