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Strictly Come Dancing will be uplifting not nasty, says Waterloo Road actor

Mark Benton hits back at critics who brand reality television as nasty and says he is more shire horse than dark horse

He may be cast as this year's leaden-footed underdog, but Waterloo Road actor Mark Benton has described Strictly Come Dancing as uplifting and has hit back at recent critics who have branded reality television as nasty.

Benton dismissed suggestions that he was the competition's dark horse – "more like a shire horse" – in BBC1's ballroom extravaganza, which returns on Saturday night.

"The lovely thing about this is it's not nasty," he said on Wednesday after the filming of the opening episode. "Even though the judges make comments, I think it's a really positive show. It's uplifting when you watch it."

Talent shows have come in for a spate of criticism in recent weeks, with Great British Bake Off judge Mary Berry hitting out at the "ghastly" programmes and

See full article on The Guardian - TV News