Fans accuse Shirley Ballas of unfair treatment of Karen Clifton - as the dancer posts cryptic message about 'critics'

Karen and Charles were in the dance-off on Sunday night

Fiona Ward

It was another bumper show on Saturday night for Strictly Come Dancing fans, with Movie Week seeing the celebrities and their professional partners take to the floor for a variety of blockbuster numbers from the likes of Dirty Dancing, Aladdin and Minions to name a few. But, some viewers have pointed out that they've noticed some tension between Karen Clifton and head judge Shirley Ballas, particularly after Karen and her partner Charles Venn found themselves in the dance-off on Sunday night's show.


Charles and Karen found themselves in the dance-off on Sunday

Karen and Charles made it through to next week, winning votes from Craig Revel-Horwood, Darcey Bussell and Bruno Tonioli, though Shirley revealed she would have kept Lee Ryan and Nadiya Bychkova in the show if she could. And after Karen posted a sweet photo of herself and Charles on her Instagram page, many fans were quick to share their opinions.

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"I believe in you and will always believe in our work together @charles_venn. We will always give our best to give others hope of believing that anything and everything is possible," Karen captioned the post. "I'm sorry you guys were in the dance-off. Definitely not deserved. And neither is a certain judge's attitude towards you, Karen..." one fan commented, while another said: "Noticed from week 1 that she showed animosity towards you...very unprofessional… Karen and Charles’ dance was better by far!"


Karen's Instagram Story

Views have been mixed, however, with some fans agreeing that Lee showed more promise than Charles – and that Shirley was simply judging on technique. Shirley has previously critiqued Karen for her disco-style choreography in week one's cha cha cha, and for missing a step in week two's quickstep.

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Karen also took to her Instagram Story to post a cryptic message about dealing with critics. It read: "It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points how strong the man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The strength is in the man who is actually in the arena… because there is no effort without error and shortcoming."

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