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Who are the dancing couple in Stay Close? Fans find them creepy

Amber Peake January 5, 2022
stay close dancing couple

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If you think the Stay Close dancing couple are creepy you’re not alone as the duo are seen dancing their way throughout the new Netflix thriller that premiered on New Year’s Eve

The series is an adaptation of author Harlan Coben’s best-selling 2012 novel of the same name. It follows a group of people who all seemingly lead a comfortable life until their past comes back to haunt them as their once kept secrets are threatened. 

While the story focuses on the lives of a detective, a working mother and a has-been documentary photographer, it also features what seems to be a sweet couple who are often seen breaking into dance. But who are they? Let’s take a look… 

Stay Close | Official Trailer | Netflix

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Stay Close | Official Trailer | Netflix
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Who are the dancing couple in Stay Close?

**spoilers alert**

In Netflix’s new thriller, two characters nicknamed “the dancing couple” by fans have intrigued some as they are often seen dancing in sync throughout the eight-part miniseries. The duo are actually named Barbie and Ken and while they present themselves as a seemingly sweet couple, they hide something much darker as they are later revealed to be assassins

Despite their names, the characters aren’t based on real-life couple Karla Homolka and her husband Paul Bernardo, who became known as the Ken and Barbie killers in the 1990s, as reported by the Independent. Instead, Stay Close writer Harlan Coben revealed the inspiration for the characters came from a memorable NFL half-time act from the 1970s and 1980s. 

While reflecting on the performances of the group Up With People, he explained to Radio Times: “They would sing all these Kumbaya-type songs and they had these fake painted smiles on. I’m sitting there going, ‘There’s got to be more behind those fake painted smiles’. So I decided, wouldn’t it be cool if two of them were kind of psychotic killers?”

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Stay Close’s Barbie and Ken actors revealed

Stay Close’s Ken and Barbie are portrayed by Hyoie O’Grady and Poppy Gilbert respectively. 

Audiences may recognise Barbie actress Poppy Gilbert for roles in notable shows, including Call The Midwife, Midsomer Murders and Leonardo. 

Stay close is one of Hyoie O’Grady’s first major acting credits. As per his IMDb, he only has two other credits, the most recent being for 2021 film Mayday. 

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Fans think they’re creepy 

As fans share their thoughts on the new series on social media, some have found the smiley demeanour of the Barbie and Ken dancing couple unnerving: 

Thoughts? Comment Below
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Amber is an entertainment journalist with a love for anything showbiz, celeb or reality TV. After graduating with a degree in Journalism at Brunel University she became a Showbiz Reporter at Express.co.uk. Having written for both HITC and The Focus, Amber is now a staff writer for The Focus covering the latest celeb and entertainment trends.