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‘Are We Going To Have To Do This?’: Christian Wilkins May Have To Dance Naked Thanks To Ed Kavalee

Ahead of Sunday’s grand finale of Dancing With The Stars, Christian Wilkins is out of quarantine, though he may be wishing he could stay in isolation.

Ahead of Sunday’s grand finale of Dancing With The Stars, Christian Wilkins is out of quarantine, though he may be wishing he could stay in isolation.

Due to the finale being bumped up a week, it means this year we have a final four instead of a final three -- and unfortunately for Christian -- one of those stars is Ed Kavalee.

In the very first episode of this season, after Ed and his dance partner Jorja performed their first dance (a very charming foxtrot), Amanda Keller and Grant Denyer joked about how buff Ed is.

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Ed Kavalee's naked dancing with the stars promise
In the premiere we got a glimpse at Ed's guns, but he promised we'd see a whole lot more in the finale. Photo: Network 10.

”You can’t tell through this outfit but you’re quite well-built up the top,” Amanda said to Ed before showing the audience a photo of Ed’s gun collection. “Which week are we going to get the shirt off?” Amanda then asked.

In a surprise to many, especially Christian, Ed said:

“I guarantee, if I’m here for the finale, Christian Wilkins and I are going to do a dance fully nude with only superimposed emojis. That is a promise.”

Speaking to 10 daily, Christian said he had “no idea” how he got roped into a Fully Monty situation.

“Ed just started saying it and someone was like, ‘Will you do it if you’re in the finale?’ Come week one I thought yeah, sure whatever… and now everyone’s bringing it up and I’m like well, shit. Are we going to have to do this?”

“We’re already suffering enough as a country,” Christian said, “We had bushfires, drought and COVID-19. I don’t think they need to see Ed and I naked.”

His time on Dancing with the Stars has already been quite eventful as it is, following the news that his dad, Richard Wilkins, had tested positive for the coronavirus, Christian and dance partner Lily Cornish were put into quarantine after being tested themselves.

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Despite both returning negative results, they still had to remain in isolation for the recommended period, meaning they were forced to rehearse for last Sunday’s show in their hotel room, performing a routine on the hotel roof.

“It felt amazing to have this weird connection that was just us,” Christian said. “We didn’t have any camera crew, it was just [Lily] and I performing this dance we had been consumed with the whole week.

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“It was the one shining gem we could hold onto and get us through a really emotional time. It felt quite magical -- but also freezing. It was 14 degrees, not including wind chill.”

The coronavirus, and the efforts taken to slow the spread of the virus, have affected so many facets of life, impacting hugely vulnerable communities. Christian’s chosen charity is the Wayside Chapel, an organisation he and his family have volunteered with for years.

“I feel like how you help people experiencing homelessness is through connection,” he said, “and that’s one thing we can’t give at the moment.” Despite social distancing rules and many self-isolating, Wayside is still open for reduced hours and offering takeaway meals and still offering core services for the community.

“The fact that they’re able to evolve and adapt during these times is amazing,” Christian added.

The show itself underwent some dramatic changes in an effort to reduce the risks of spreading the disease, most notably removing the live studio audience for the last few weeks. The first time he and Lily had to perform to empty chairs Christian said he was surprised by how much he enjoyed the change.

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“It felt like that one day at school where the teacher doesn’t rock up and us kids can mess around. That’s the attitude I took on but it’s now Ed, Celia and Claudia’s third week without an audience so it will be interesting to see how they feel.”

Throughout the competition one thing has been crystal clear: Christian and Lily have been the most perfect pairing. Though they’ve only been paired for a few months, they appear like they’ve been friends for decades.

“We did the math and we’ve seen each other every day for 55-56 days,” Christian said. “Come Monday, when I’m not going to see her little face, it tears me apart! That’s awful. I feel like we’ve become like an extra limb on each other.

“We literally know when we need snack breaks, we prep snacks for each other,” he said before stopping to exclaim, “Oh my god, that man has so much toilet paper. Jesus Christ. But yeah, she’s the best.”

His time on Dancing has been so joyous, with his lack of filter, razor-sharp wit and refusal to be anything but himself, Christian said the response from the audience has been an added bonus to the experience.

“The amount of messages I’ve had from young boys and girls, and of parents of potentially queer children, about how important it has been to have someone who doesn’t necessarily fit in,” he said, adding that despite his young age, he didn’t get to see that on TV growing up.

Now nearing the end of the competition, Christian said it feels so bittersweet to be heading into the finale.

Dancing has been such a joy. Having Lily’s friendship, I have been so glad I get to walk away with that and having something to do each day, plus offer a distraction to some people. It has been the most incredible time.

“I always knew it would be amazing but I didn’t think it would be this amazing.”

Dancing With The Stars Grand Finale will air Sunday, March 29 at 7.30 on 10 and 10 Play.