Will Mellor's reaction to Strictly semi final disappointment splits viewers

Will Mellor's Strictly reaction split viewers. (BBC)
Will Mellor's Strictly reaction split viewers. (BBC)

Will Mellor's reaction to a disappointing performance in the Strictly Come Dancing semi final has split viewers, with some calling him "bitter" while others said he was simply expressing his feelings.

The actor and his partner Nancy Xu attacked an intense Paso Doble for their first dance of two in Sunday's episode, but were told by the judges that there were numerous problems with it.

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Head judge Shirley Ballas rattled off a list of gripes, from shaping to his use of a cape as a prop, and told him: "You had the arrogance part, you came out and delivered a good strong message, I'll give you that."

Will Mellor's cape work caught viewers' attention. (BBC)
Will Mellor's cape work caught viewers' attention. (BBC)

But after listing the issues with his performance, she told Mellor: "These are basic fundamentals from the very very beginning, they were very much missing for me.

"And, when you choose to use a cape at the beginning, you have to extend it, it can't feel like it's a little scarf round your neck, it is an extension that reaches."

Meanwhile, Anton Du Beke told him: "I just thought you tried a bit too hard."

Nancy Xu and Will Mellor dance the Paso Doble. (BBC)
Nancy Xu and Will Mellor dance the Paso Doble. (BBC)

Mellor looked annoyed with himself and following the comments told host Claudia Winkleman when she asked how he felt: "Rubbish. I've worked hard and I've let (Xu) down. I'm not fishing for compliments, she taught me right and I've gone too aggressive, she told me to be calm and I forgot a few fundamentals.

"I tried, but it's tough, isn't it, the semi finals. We're all in the same boat though, I should have done better."

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However, his reaction split viewers.

One person tweeted: "It makes me so uncomfortable watching Will get criticism I feel like he’s one comment away from walking off."

Someone else wrote: "My god. Will Mellor doesn’t half spit his dummy out when he gets actual feedback that’s not praising him. He did that last time too. #strictly Mate, you gotta take it on the chin and come back better. Not bitter."

Another person added: "Will is raging," as someone else replied: "So awkward."

Other fans stuck up for Mellor, who had previously cried at the emotion of another dance earlier in the series.

A viewer tweeted: "Everyone saying Will was in a mood following that criticism are exactly the reason men don't talk about their feelings and mental health. Quite literally the message of one of his dances earlier this series."

Someone else wrote: "Why did Shirley attack Will so fiercely? Completely out of order."

Will Mellor
Will Mellor is hoping to make the Strictly final. (BBC)

But many viewers were simply distracted by the routine with the cape, as one person tweeted: "sorry didn’t enjoy Will and Nancy the cape looked like he was trying to dry himself with a towel."

Someone else wrote: "Will’s cape work did look a bit like he was trying to fight his way out of a hairdresser’s gown, but I loved the flamenco bits."

Another person commented: "The start of Will's paso gave me flashbacks to when I got a dress stuck over my head in a Topshop communal dressing room in 1996."

Strictly Come Dancing's results air tomorrow at 8.15pm on BBC One.

Watch: Who is Strictly's Will Mellor?