Strictly Speaking: the grand final!

Awww, look at them! So, yes, Kara and Artem were victorious on Saturday. Yay! I’d love to be able to do a proper recap but I’ve got a house to clean, presents to wrap and an ENORMOUS amount of telly to watch. So here are my slightly condensed thoughts on the grand final (imagine the bullet points are tiny little glitterballs). Let me have your thoughts in the comments!

  • HOW cute was it when Kara and Artem got all emotional in their VT? When Kara started crying I must admit I started to tear up a little. I blame my Strictly cocktail (vodka, Cointreau, Chambord, cranberry juice and a twist of lime. ‘Tis delish).
  • I was really looking forward to the show dances this year. I actually thought that Matt and Aliona would win it with theirs, so I was a bit surprised when it wasn’t really much cop. Yes, Matt is great at gymnastics. WE KNEW THAT ALREADY. It would have been nice if Aliona had choreographed a routine that included some actual dancing. After all, as Mike said, it’s not called Strictly Come Gymnastics, is it? And did they glue that cap onto his hair?

  • Kara and Artem’s show dance was very ambitious, too much so it transpires as Kara tore a ligament in her arm while doing a backflip. OUCH. How she managed to even finish that routine, let alone perform two more, I don’t know (I imagine the painkillers were super duper strong). I did like the routine, despite the mistakes, as Artem included a lot of dance content alongside the acrobatics. Although, as much as I love Don’t Stop Me Now, perhaps a slightly slower song *might* have eased the pressure somewhat?

  • Now, I’m a sucker for anything with even a hint of Dirty Dancing-ness, so I’ll admit to squeeing when Pamela and James started dancing to The Time of My Life. And, yes, it was a lovely routine, performed beautifully. But! It didn’t feel like a show dance, it felt safe. There were a few lifts, and I certainly wasn’t expecting the same level of acrobatics as from the other finalists, but it lacked pizazz. I wish they’d thrown caution to the wind!

  • Despite finishing the first half top of the leader board Pamela and James are out first. I was really looking forward to seeing their Argentine tango 😦
  • I wasn’t keen on Matt and Aliona’s paso, probably because I detested the version of Please Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood that they used (love the Nina Simone original). They reprised their Viennese Waltz, and finally Craig was happy with Matt’s thumbs.
  • Kara and Artem’s waltz was lovely, if a little tentative due to Kara not being able to bend her arm and being in PAIN. They performed their American Smooth again – I LOVE that routine, and at last they got a ten from Craig. Len, of course, was still unhappy with the lack of time spent in hold. Next year the Strictly powers that be really need to make sure the judges are consistent in penalising rule infringements (see also Craig’s illegal lift pernickerty-ness), and that the pro dancers are given an official rule book.
  • All the couples, bar the finalists, return for a fun, lively group dance. Patsy! I’ve missed her. I WON’T miss seeing Widdy flung around the dance floor.
  • I was so convinced that Matt would win that when they announced that Kara had won I was positively jubilant. I may have done a little dance of my own on the sofa 🙂 I love how Artem stood back to let her lift the trophy (shame she only had one working arm!), and how emotional he was. Oh heck, I just love Artem.
  • So, that was this year’s Strictly. Despite a fairly lukewarm start I’ve ended up loving it just as much as ever. I’m so pleased Kara and Artem won (in case you couldn’t tell) – it’s the first year since Alesha that the person I’ve wanted to win actually has 🙂 I leave you (until the Christmas special, of course) with my favourite picture from the final. Altogether now: awwwwwwww!

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