BLACK BETTYDance number 69 by Legs & Co __________________________________________________________
Performed byRam Jamand reaching number 7 in the UK charts __________________________________________________________
Original broadcast date27/10/77 Duration of dance -- 2.00 mins
Dancers -- Gill, Lulu, Rosie, Patti, Pauline, Sue __________________________________________________________
The Legs & Co attendance register so far after 70 dances
Well i dont think you folks will like my assessment of this dance. The song itself whilst being a real barn stormer and most listenable is in my book a very hard song to create a dance sequence too. There are so many tempos to this one and the middle section of the song is just frantic to say the least.
If i split this into two halves then the first half is fine. All six dancers decked out in their black dresses with stockings to match, well they really look the part don't they, all very eye catching and most sexy indeed. Gill gives us one of her sultry looks and Lulu presents us fans one of those iconic Legs & Co moments, with her clenched fist.
For me the dance breaks down once the hair swishing really starts towards the middle. I realize its almost impossible to ask all 6 girls to swish their hair in unison, but the half and one second delay makes it all rather untidy. Some of the dancers seemed to struggle to keep up with the song, Sue even had a moment were she lost it for a second. Once again i thought Gill had a poor day here and seemed way of the pace. At least the final scene all came together okay.
Would it be considered sacrilege for me to suggest that a dance troupe more lissom in nature, say Arlene`s Hot Gossip would have suited this song better, obviously on the KE show ? Well im standing by to have rotten tomatoes thrown at me, but the more i view this one, the more untidy it looks.
Just 3 out of 10
No, I reckon these six young ladies are lissom enough for "Black Betty", and for old SF for that matter and those costumes are mighty fine. Yet having said that this is not a favourite. Big hair yes; head banging frenetic hair tossing no. And, in the same way that I find Patti as the sister in "Lonely Boy" out of sync with the overall feel of the piece, in this instance it's Lulu's fist clenching that doesn't work for me. A move for one of the other girls perhaps but not Lulu, she just looks too young. So it is but a 6 from this judge.
So much harshness, thus far in this thread about this particular dance routine, but I'm really rather fond of this one, the dress, while they seem to be the most daring yet, are quite exquisite, & combined with the dance moves, must surely get a few pulses racing.
As for Lulu's clenched fist early on in this performance, I think it looks kinda cute, it's like she's saying 'guess what I'm holding in my hand', I just what it'll be as I'm watching her.
Overall, a good substitute for the routine that we most probably won't get to see on television again for quite a while yet.
A rocking good song and scrumptuous ladies in shredded black with stockings to boot; sounds like a recipe for top marks. However I do agree to some extent with the majority so far that this performance fails to hit the bullseye and seems just a little out of sync at times. Nevertheless I don't think it's a Troupe problem and I have never yet seen the Dance I feel would be better performed by another set of Dancers. Instead I think some of the choreography is just not easy to do at this speed so I prefer to focus on the this being a somewhat freestyle interpretation in that middle section and to think of the ladies being given free reign to just go out there and rock to their hearts' content. Incidentally I totally agree with SF about the casting of sweet young Lulu in this "fist out and thrust my hips" role and I would have nominated Pauline or Patti or Sue for this scene, with no disrespect to Lulu (who could have been totally right for this a few short years later IMO). Anyway after all this I give this 7.5/10 as let's face it, it is great fun to watch for all it's little imperfections.
Some Dancers who gave a good time, broke all the rules, played all the fools, yeah yeah yeah they blew our minds
There is a problem with ‘Black Betty’ and that is it should have been a lot better than it turned out to be. High expectations at the start with the Girls in saucy stockings and suspenders, oh la la Legs & Co are costumed as Femme Fatales and with the long flowing black dresses [what else with Literal Flick at the helm?] they conjure up an image of sexy sorceresses. Perhaps not Lulu as indeed she does look too young to play the part in this Legs & Co display. As mentioned Lulu’s fist in your face rebelliousness is far too tame, she’s still only a schoolgirl here in comparison to her more mature looking dance-companions. The Routine does become increasingly disorganised, too much so. Are they dancing or have they got ants in their hair and down their backs, which they are trying to get rid of? Towards the end Legs & Co do an odd-looking stomping step and turn, it fits in with the romp-a-stomp music I suppose; or maybe they are stamping on those ants?
Gill looks mighty fine to me so no bad day for her in my book. I am of the opinion that Pauline is more suited to the less subtle displays of the choreographic art, the no nonsense clear cut raunchy moves, however the dance steps are not as crisply defined as should be in ‘Black Betty’, that is Flick’s fault in offering up a messy affair dance-wise. Were Patti and Rosie in this one? Saw Patti early on then she seems to have opted out which is a pity as Patti can rock your socks off when so inclined to do so. Rosie kept at the back not wanting to let headmistress Flick notice her lack of enthusiasm.
5/10 Girls you looked great, not Girls really [even if capitalised to indicated Youthful Maidens as I mean it to be in deference to “Wimmins Lib” but Women: Proud, bold and strong! I’ve said this before but I find Sue in this to be as attractive as I’ve ever seen her, with that sensible haircut you would have been a good choice for the role of Purdey as seen in The New Avengers tv series.
Sue once again giving the Routine her most focused effort. Sue did you never question a particular performance you were given to do? You always seem to put your best foot forward unhesitatingly no matter what is asked from you.
Nope, as much as the Legs ladies look stunning in this, it's not a song to be danced to. I agree some of it looks out of sync, poor Gill was way behind and looked lost at some points. The moshings bits are ok, and not so sure bout the stamping...
Sadly so short as well, probably too much of a headache for all that headbanging, not the girls at their best.
3 stars for the look, 1 for the dance = 4
I'll have a better exploration of this when it goes up on YT
Somehow I like this routine even though I have difficulties to put it in such well-placed words as others have, anyhow, the average valuation of this dance is much too low, so I will help to rectify this a bit by giving it 7.25 out of 10.
Perhaps I should have chosen a different word than sync with regard to my earlier post, as in common with later remarks the free for all approach adopted works well for me. What I find just a little jarring, and hence out of sync with my expectation, is that fist. Flick may have included this deliberately to challenge the viewers preconceptions but with my stick still in the mud I'm going to put my neck out a little further. For me this would have worked a little better with only five, or perhaps just four dancers, each being given more room to work in.
Ive listened to Dave Jensons intro to this for years and i still cant make out what he says after he says the words "Legs & Co` ? He also says it at the end of the performance also, though its not on the link provided. I feel i should know what hes saying but i just cant work it out, please somebody provide a translation or explanation.
Only just noticed this thread about individual routines, great idea to rate and score them individually Ryan, I wish I'd noticed it earlier. Anyway I'll start to contribute from here. This particular routine I really enjoyed, I do tend to prefer these higher tempo ones. Without going in to too much detail I thought it was a sexy routine to a great tune where the girls were allowed to show their character. I'll give it 8/10.
P.S Although it's too late to go through all the other routines now, I'd like to point out I would've given two routines the full marks 10/10. These routines are 'love hit me' and 'mah na mah na'.
Okay Stuey, if you`re going to give your thoughts and ratings on certain dances, i wont include the two maximums you mentioned until you post on that particular thread, just keeps things tidier that way. Please visit this comments section every week by the way.
Another wild sound but the scene is a little gentler on the eye, south bala lam from Ram Jam, or words to that effect. I think I get the gist of Kid's introduction. This is a great routine absolutely perfect for this track, it has to be wild, uncoordinated and all over the place the keep up with the song. All six girls look on top form and it makes it a memorable routine in this correspondents opinion. Consider that rotten tomato returned to sender! 10/10
Great performances by Lulu, Patti and Gill to this one, particularly like the Lulu fist clenching part, always have to rewind that bit and replay it a few times when watching Black Betty. 7/10 from me.
Another tough one to dance to because of the change of tempos, but I think they do a decent job. I must say that I like Gill's hairstyle in this one and combined with her moody look she proves to be very watchable! An OK 8.
Sandy Borne and Tricia Roberts Appreciation Society