So far on G&TV, the archival treats have included old projects from Chris Barrie, Craig Charles and Robert Llewellyn, so we thought we ought to complete the set. And it’s ultra-topical too, as news of Danny’s forthcoming stint on Strictly has resulted in several tedious tabloid articles pretending that his background as a dancer is some sort of newly-unearthed secret.
Celebrities doing things you wouldn’t necessarily expect them to do is a constant source of fascination for the British public, and it was in this spirit that LWT produced the Ian Wright-fronted Hidden Talents of the Rich and Famous at around the turn of the century. A spin-off from the former footballer’s chat show, Friday Night’s All Wright, it gave television personalities the chance to showcase skills they don’t get to display in their day jobs, and one such participant was Danny John-Jules. We can’t find the full episode – or indeed much information about the show in general – but Danny’s five minute performance is preserved on Youtube:
We’re not sure, but judging by the fellow guests glimpsed in that intro, we think this episode aired around Christmas 2000, which would be consistent with the size of Danny’s contemporary afro. While obviously we knew he had those skills in his locker, this is a genuinely impressive performance, which even incorporates the little dance he does as Duane Dibbley in Can’t Smeg Won’t Smeg. It’s also amusing to see Ian Wright dutifully describe Red Dwarf and Cat as a “top comedy” and “hilarious” respectively, followed by a clip from Back In The Red (Part One).
And if we see any unicycling, juggling, rope climbing or tightrope walking in any of his Strictly routines, we’ll know where the inspiration came from.