Hey All :)
Welcome to the season finale of season twenty-six of Dancing of the Stars. After four weeks of competition, only three couples remain to battle it out for the special athletes edition mirror ball trophy. Will it be the figure skater with the big personality in Adam? The figure skater with the redemption story in Tonya? Or the football star who has been a consistent dancer all season in Josh? All of our answers by the end of tonight’s one-hour special finale.
Last week, we said goodbye to three couples as Mirai, Chris, and Jennie were all eliminated from the competition. Mirai was the big surprise boot, and while the others were a bit expected, both Chris and Jennie are two people who would have benefited from having a regular length season where they could grow as dancers. Tonight, the final three are tasked with the usual finale performances- an unlearned dance plus the popular freestyle. Let’s quickly review last week’s (final) poll results.
Adam & Jenna are the overwhelming favorite partnership with nearly 70% of the vote. Josh & Tonya are both close together for second and third. In another 70% vote, Adam & Jenna‘s contemporary was the favorite routine. The only dance battle which saw MJ readers disagree with who actually won was the battle between Josh and Chris. Chris came away with 53% of the vote for you guys even though Josh was the official victor on the show. It was another average to above average episode for you guys with a B/B+ spread.
You guys believe Adam is taking this with 80% of the vote. Josh has 13% and Tonya has 7%. I am really torn as I don’t think it is that obvious. I could actually make a case for any of them. While Adam is clearly the best dancer left with the most buzz, he also has the least known partner on this show. That could hurt him. Tonya fits right in with this show’s demo and people love an underdog story. And you could never count out the football players on the show. Let’s not forget, many people feel Sasha and especially Sharna are long overdue for a victory. I want to place my money on Adam but truly, a win by one of the other two would not surprise me at all.
There will be a short live vote tonight for the audience and that, in addition to last week’s judges scores, audience votes, and tonight’s judges score will all be added together to come up with our winner. Let’s see how it all shakes out.
Tom and Erin welcome us to the finale. No opening routine as we are a bit crunched for time. Tom tells us we will have the opportunity for some online voting later on. We begin right now with round one and Tonya…
Tonya Harding and Sasha – Vinnese Waltz
A lovely viennese waltz. Simple but elegant. Lots of wonderful rise and fall, good fluidity, decent posture, and clearly from her face, emotional and expressive for Tonya.
Len says Tonya hasn’t had an easy journey. He feels it was danced with an elegance and sophistication. He calls it a great start to the finale. Bruno feels like he is watching a born again Tonya. He says it is lovely to see. Carrie Ann thought Tonya looked a bit nervous tonight but she compliments that Tonya’s moves are so expressive.
Carrie Ann- 8
Josh Norman and Sharna – Foxtrot
Good dance. I would caution (if this show had more weeks coming) Josh to watch his bum in these close hold dances as he has a tendency to stick it out a bit much. Sharna and he should have closer contact to where it is pushed in. But that comes with practice and time and well, we don’t have the luxury of either one right now. But this was a solid foxtrot danced very well and choreographed to be simple yet effective by Sharna.
Bruno enjoyed how far Josh has come. He wishes the season was longer. Carrie Ann says Josh brings to life what the season is about. She sees the poetry in Josh’s dances. Len feels Josh has an ease and elegance about his dancing. He loved the style and just mentions one simple mistake but says who cares?
Carrie Ann- 9
Adam Rippon and Jenna – Jazz
Ha. That was adorable. I loved the song choice and it fits this couple to a T. Jenna was smart with the choreography here. This was the first really memorable routine out of the three we saw tonight in that it had something different and put a smile on my face. Good stuff.
Carrie Ann calls this couple the wonder twins of dance. Len calls it fantastic. Bruno loved the theatrics and feels the timing and partner work is flawless.
Carrie Ann- 10
Tonya Harding and Sasha – Freestyle
LOL. That was like a 70’s inspired disco workout video. Between the steps and the aerobics, all we really needed was some star from a sitcom to come out advertising a piece of equipment. I joke of course. This was a really good freestyle allowing Tonya to show character and personality and enabling her to put in some of those figure skating spins and twirls. Good choreography from Sasha and a great way to end her DWTS journey.
Len says it was fill of fun and energy. He feels everything was put in there and it was terrific. Bruno says Tonya became the ultimate disco diva. Carrie Ann gets out of her chair and to hug Tonya. She loved the joy in it and feels it was so much fun.
Carrie Ann- 10
Josh Norman and Sharna – Freestyle
I love the little fusion of argentine tango and paso sharna has put into this. Hey, speaking of… no finale fusion dances huh? Bummer. I like those. Anyways, a strong freestyle from Josh using his football background as the backdrop for a dance that had some great technical aspects and wonderful showmanship. I saw him being in-sync with the other dances, so that’s a plus too. Just all around goodness in this one. Two freestyles so far ans two thumbs up from me.
Bruno comments that Josh is…wet. He feels it was a strong performance. He loved that Josh was the boss in the dance. Carrie Ann compliments Sharna’s choreography. She loved it and saw a champion. Len doesn’t think Josh is the underdog in the finale. He calls it great and loved the drama and power.
Carrie Ann- 10
Adam Rippon and Jenna – Freestyle
Interesting. They say DWTS freestyle routines can win or lose the competition for you. I am not so sure that was a winning freestyle. It was everything Adam is about personally- so I absolutely commend him on doing what he wanted and to Jenna for helping to bring his vision to life. But did it make enough of an impact on voters who are about to cast final minute votes? I don’t know. It was in-sync, fun, and very stylized. But was it enough? The jury is out for me personally on this one.
Carrie Ann felt there were moments where she saw some out of sync moments. She feels like it was missing something. Len loved the invention of it all. Bruno calls it a high style freestyle. He calls it absolutely fabulous.
Carrie Ann- 9
All the athletes return, choreographed by Mandy Moore for one last routine. This is basically an opening routine you would see during weeks one or two. But hey, at least everyone gets the opportunity to shine one more time. They all look like they had a blast so who are we to judge? LOL
Time for results…
THE WINNERS AND CHAMPIONS OF DWTS SEASON 26 ATHLETES ARE…
ADAM AND JENNA!!!!!!!!!!!!
Jenna is of course, in tears as she celebrates her first ever mirror ball trophy. Adam is ecstatic. The rest of the cast (pros, troupe, and celebs) come on over to celebrate. A well deserved and earned victory for Adam. He probably had this locked up way back in week one but I won’t lie and say both Josh and Tonya didn’t give him a run for his money tonight. That freestyle was interesting to say the least and I thought it would hinder final votes. Perhaps it did but he was so far ahead already that it didn’t matter? We shall never know. We will also never know who actually came in second and third, which annoys me as I am sucker for statistics. Ah well.
So, this mini-season comes to a close as fast and rushed as it started. But I had a load of fun blogging it. Thank you to MJ for allowing me to do so. Thank you to everyone who watched with me, voted in the polls, commented, and took the ride for the last month. This fall, DWTS 27 will premiere. It will be a regular length season (thankfully) with a whole new crop of contestants and surprises. I hope to be back for that and hope to see y’all as well. For now, have a happy, safe, and wonderful summer everyone. :D