Strictly Come Dancing final: 5 talking points, from Stacey Dooley's win to the return of Danny John Jules

Emma Bullimore

So there we have it, Stacey Dooley and Kevin Clifton are your Strictly champions for 2018! They were bottom of the judges’ leaderboard, but the audience didn’t care. On this show, if you don’t have a journey you’ve got no chance of glitterball glory. Here’s what happened:

Kevin turned into Brendan Cole

The stakes were high for Grimsby’s finest Kevin Clifton. This was his fifth Strictly final and he was fed up of coming a close second. So perhaps that’s why he got so stroppy with Craig when he refused to give them a ten and poured scorn on Kev’s showdance choreography. ‘He does this to me in every final!’ moaned Kevin as Craig dismissed his masterpiece as ‘lots of running around’. Ouch.

The showdances!

The highlight of any Strictly final, amid all of the strung-out VTs and voting reminders, it’s the showdances we tune in to see. Faye’s was by far the best – an old school Hollywood number with glamorous, cinematic choreography. It oozed showbiz and Faye sparkled.

Joe’s attempt to be a rock and roller wasn’t quite as successful (although his trampolining was good) and Ashley’s contemporary routine was technically amazing but hardly a crowd pleaser. Stacey’s energetic jive-based number was full of commitment but it split the judges. Clearly it was enough to make people vote though.

Great dancing won’t win the glitterball

Ashley faced the dance-off for three weeks in a row and did her best to ignore a huge backlash about her dance background. Tonight, both she and Faye produced clean show-stopping performances, scoring a perfect 120 out of 120. But it wasn’t enough. Alas, it’s not just about the dancing ladies, but you did yourselves proud.

Look who’s back!

Let’s face it, Strictly is on telly for a long, long time every year. So it’s easy to forget who graced that dance floor until they reunite for a special nostalgic routine in the final. It was great to see Danny John Jules put his ‘show must go on’ smile on after boycotting It Takes Two when he got eliminated. And nobody batted an eyelid when erstwhile national villain Sean(n) Walsh recreated his Matrix number. Dr Ranj was great fun, Susannah brought back her ridiculous props and it was great fun to get the gang back together.

Naughty Brrrruno

Yet again Brrrruno said a naughty word on telly as he tried to talk about Stacey’s ‘Greatest Hits’. To be fair, it’s quite a minor slip-up for Mr Tonioli, he’s said a lot worse. The judges were falling over themselves to praise the contestants tonight, although for once Bruno didn’t actually fall off his chair.

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