Jives to the left of us, American Smooths to the right, with a Salsa and Viennese Waltz chucked in the middle just for the fun of it!
JLS's JB Gill the winner of the night, partnering Ola in a bright and lively jive to Rockin Robin'. We won't harp on about it being grossly overmarked (a little flat footed, raggedy technique, a slip) because it was damn good fun, full of personality with magnificent timing and musicality. But the judges weren't holding back with the 10s, considering he was first out! 39 put them top of the judges board; support from the audience gave them the trophy.
Also dancing a jive were Blue Peter's action girl, Helen Skelton, with Arten Chigvintsev, to All I Want For Christmas is You. As you'd expect, there were well executed flips but also a few hiccups. However, these didn't detract from an overall great routine and 37 points gave them second on the board.
There were American Smooths from Bobby Ball and partner Katya Virshilas and Sheila Hancock with Ian Waite; Bobby and Katya's charming routine to a jaunty version of White Christmas (with his famous braces getting a starring role) while 79 year old - I can't believe that - Sheila brought us a gorgeous mini panto of The Ice Queen to Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas, danced with a wonderful top line, very elegant and classy. 29 points and 36 points put them third and sixth respectively on the leader board.
An outing, finally, for my favourite Christmas song which sums up the Strictly season - The Most Wonderful Time of the Year, as Anton du Beke whirled Katy Brand around the floor beautifully for a delightful Viennese Waltz. Fluid, lovely extensions, great footwork, movement and timing - we knew she could dance anyway - but as Len put it: "Like Christmas snow: deep and crisp and even." Anton's jumper deserved a ten on its own and Katy said the whole experience was like "being dipped in molten tinsel". Only 33 points felt undermarked!
When Fabrice Muamba apparently rejected Dancing On Ice and said he'd rather dance a salsa on Strictly, we just knew he'd pitch up here somewhere! Recovering amazingly from a cardiac arrest, Fabrice partnered Aliona Vilani in a wonderfully groovy routine to Christmas Wrappin', showing the nifty footwork that had served him so well in his previous career. Brilliant natural rhythm; he had a ton of fun and so did we. Mid table respectability with 35 points!
Rod Stewart got the judges swaying with a finger snappin' toe tappin' rendition of Let It Snow, before there was no faffing about with eliminations and b-boom music, instead, it was straight out with the Moment of Truth naming JB and Ola as winners.
Another season gone then *sob* and the finale bringing not only the cast of this series and the judges out on the floor, but the Strictly All Stars revisiting their signature moves: Kelly and Brendan; Erin and Colin; Chelsee and Pasha; Chris and Ola; Rachel and Vincent; Tom and Natasha paired with Kristina and Ian.
Time to wrap up those glittery paddles and stick them back in the loft till next year, awaiting the the return of Strictly. But feel free to join me for Dancing on Ice, which begins on Sunday, January 6th. See you then :)