Dancing With the Stars Season 17 Finale: Who Won? (Review)

Dancing With the Stars Finale

Yes, Dancing With the Stars fans — the moment is finally here, the Season Finale of Dancing With the Stars on ABC! So, who won? I’not telling, until later in this review –if you want to read ahead, that’s your prerogative, of course. Which of the Final Three celebrities will prove to be the best dancer of the season on Dancing With the Stars? Read on, to find out!

As we found out just last night, Bill Engvall and Emma Slater were eliminated, having received the lowest total score of the night. Tonight, we’ll get to see the Final Three couples perform for the last time, and find out which one becomes the victor and gets to take home the prestigious Mirror Ball Trophy.

On Dancing With the Stars tonight, the remaining three couples will dance to a new routine. It’s all a part of what’s called the “24 Hour Fusion Challenge.” Will it prove to be a “Con-Fusion Challenge” to one or more of the couples?

Each of the three couples left will be required to perform a fusion dance of two different dance styles. Last night, the couples selected songs for their opponents that melded together two different and contrasting dance styles. What’s more, they were given less than a day to prepare themselves to dance and to try to win the highest score total from the judges tonight.

There will be a LIVE performance by Lady Antebellum tonight. They will sing their latest hit song, “Compass.” Also, Enrique Iglesias will perform also, singing his hit, “Heart Attack.”

What’s more, the entire cast of this season will return, and Ylvis will perform their mega-hit song “The Fox.” Celebrity and pro dancers, alike, will join them onstage.

Finally, at the end of Dancing With the Stars, a champion will be crowned when Monday night’s public vote gets added to the judges’ scores from both nights.

Dancing With the Stars opened up with a spectacular red carpet performance involving all of the dancers, both the professionals and celebrity ones — and, even the judges took part in it! They danced to Enrique Iglesias singing “Heart Attack.” It was a cool and fantastic way to begin the season finale.

After the opening dance number, we got to see once again the amazing freestyle performance of Amber Riley and Derek Hough. Voters across America tweeted that it was the one they wanted to see again the most of all of the dances; and, why not? It was a practically flawless performance!

Then, on Dancing With the Stars, Ylvis performed his huge hit “The Fox” and all of the female dancers took to the stage to dance as he sang. Ths was yet another very cool performance — it may be a novelty sort of a song, but it’s a catchy and humorous one.

The fan favorite from earlier in this season of Dancing With the Stars,  Bill Nye, next dances the Cha-Cha-Cha with his professional partner Tyne Stecklein “Weird Science.” This was his most beloved performance by his immense fan base, and the audience loved seeing him and Tyne perform it again.

After that, Elizabeth Lauren Berkley and her dance partner, Val Chmerkovskiy — who were eliminated in an episode last week — dance together, and the audience erupts with applause at their stunning performance. They were one of the casualties of the “Engvall Effect,” as I call it, eliminated due to Bill and Emma getting tons of support from his fans.

Next, we get an intimate glimpse backstage at Jack Osbourne and Cheryl Burke practicing their upcoming fusion dance. They’re both great — I hope that they do well!

Also, we get a look back at another of the favorites this season on Dancing With the Stars, Valerie Harper. I have a lot of memories watching her on the Mary Tyler Moore show and her own show, Rhoda. She decided not to let her terminal brain cancer stop her from getting out and showing the world that anything was possible, by participating in this season of Dancing With the Stars.

Valerie was on the show thanking everyone for their support and love. Then, she and her dance partner, Tristan MacManus, danced to the song “What a Wonderful World” as performed by Colbie Caillat. It was a poignant, heart-warming performance.

After that, we get a glimpse back at how Snooki did this season, and see her dancing with Sasha Farber. She was/is actually a very good dancer, and I thought she might even make it to tonight; but, no such luck.

Also, we see Amber Riley and Derek Hough backstage, rehearsing — they are clearly into the dance, and seem ready to get it on.

Lady Antebellum takes the stage to perform their latest hit, “Compass,” and we get to watch two other celebrity couples who were eliminated perform. Leah Remini and Tony Dovolani as well as Bill Engvall and Emma Slater take the stage and dance, doing the Samba.

At last, it’s time to see the remaining three couples perform their fusion dances!

The first of the three couples to perform are Corbin Bleu (who I suspect both Carrie Ann and possibly Bruno have a “thing” for) and his dance partner, Karina Smirnoff. The dance the Cha-Cha-Cha combined with elements of the Foxtrot.  They do a really great job, particularly considering the scant time they had to practice it.

Len said to Corbin that “you are a fantastic dancer,” but added that Corbin “messed it up in one little part.”

Bruno told him that “Your gliding was beautiful, but you went wrong in the Cha-Cha-Cha.”

Carrie Ann then said that she had “respect and love” for Corbin, but added “you lost it in the Cha Cha.”

Still, despite their rather snotty remarks, the judges gave them straight 9s, for a total of 27 — a pretty respectable score.  Theiroverall total for both last night and tonight is 89.

The second couple was Jack Osbourne and Cheryl Burke. Their fusion dance was the Salsa/Paso Doble, a combo I’d think would be pretty challenging to pull off successfully. I thought they did very well, though, and they still have a decent chance of winning it all.

Bruno commented first, saying it was a “wonderful fusion” and “your timing was right; you did it!”

Carrie Ann said she “loved” seeing how they danced the two different styles together, but she added “you were too flat-footed on the Salsa.”

Len told them that they had “given me the most pleasure to watch.”

The judges gave them straight 9s, for a total of 27, and a combined total of 84 for both nights. So far, that puts them in second place.

The final couple to perform tonight, and this season, on Dancing With the Stars is Amber Riley and Derek Hough. They have been fan favorites from the very beginning, and have pretty consistently turned in amazing performances. They dance the Samba/Quick Step, and…they nail it! What a terrific performance!

Carrie Ann  said “you guys just created a whole new dance.” She called Amber’s performance “effortless” and “well done.”

Len told them “you bedazzle you little sausage.” O-kay….

Bruno added “Your performance was effortless, you did not put a foot wrong.”

The judges gave Amber and Derek the highest scores of the night — straight 10s! With the 30 they got tonight, and last night’s score, thye have a combined total score of 94, the highest score of the night!

That means that — Amber Riley and Derek Hough are this season’s winners on Dancing With the Stars! Woo-Hoo! In third place is Jack and Cheryl; in second place, Corbin Bleu and Karina Smirnoff. Each of these couples — as well as the other celebrities and pro dancers this season — gave it their all, and also gave America a lot of pleasure-filled moments watching their incredible performances. Did your favorite win? If not, who did you hope would be the winners? Please leave your comments below!


Written by: Douglas Cobb