Dancing With The Stars recap: And the winner is ...

For The Baltimore Sun

We start with Len Goodman as Santa and then a big opening number featuring all the dancers from this season at the Grove.

To keep this short and simple, I'm not going to write up all the ousted contestants' reprise dances, nor any of the live performances. This recap is all meat, no filler.

The first round is a "redo" round with each couple picking one of their own dances from earlier in the season to perform again.

They're redoing their jive from Week 3, the one with the bed. It's good, but I remember Lindsey doing it better in Week 3. Her kicks aren't as high and her steps aren't as energetic as they were. Or maybe they are, but based on recent weeks, I know she could do better. I almost thought they weren't being scored on this because she was underdancing it so much.

The judges lavish praise on it anyway because it's the finale and they're nice.


Carrie Ann: 10; Len: 10; Bruno: 10

I guess Frankie wanted to wear eyeliner again because they're redoing their Pirates of the Caribbean Argentine tango. I wish they'd picked a dance that showcased Witney less and Frankie more.

Bruno Tonioli says it was even better the second time around. Carrie Ann Inaba says it was a bigger and better performance with improved lines and more confidence. Len Goodman says it was fantastic.


Carrie Ann: 10; Len: 10; Bruno: 10

Oh, so it's another one of those “Everybody gets a perfect score" finales.

Aw, man, I know it was only last week, but I would've been happy to see their jive again. It may be my favorite dance of the whole season. Instead they reprise their samba.

Carrie Ann says Jordan makes it look easy. She says this routine was much improved. Len praises Lindsay's choreography. Bruno calls him "world class."


Carrie Ann: 10; Len: 10; Bruno: 10

Round 2 is the 24-hour fusion round. So, presumably, as in seasons past, they got the styles/music after Monday night's show.

They've got a tango/cha-cha fusion. The slow tango parts look really weird with the uptempo music. The cha-cha parts look more natural with the song.

Len says Lindsey is amazing. He likes that Mark went straight into the routine with no messing about. Bruno praises the blend of the two styles. Carrie Ann says it went beyond fusion into alchemy.


Carrie Ann: 10 Len: 10; Bruno: 10

They've got Foxtrot and Tango which feels like an easier match. You can definitely see Witney talking Frankie through a lot of the routine. I don't know why theirs seems so much shorter than Lindsey & Mark's?

Bruno says in the excitement of it all, Frankie lost a little bit of control, putting bounce in the tango when it doesn't belong there. Len says Frankie epitomizes the show. But then he says there was some "confusion in the fusion."


Carrie Ann: 10; Len: 9; Bruno: 9

Carrie Ann seems surprised that Len and Bruno actually judged the dance on its merits.

I've not been commenting on most of the reprise dances, but Barbara Corcoran is on the outside stage at the Grove and dancing so very badly with the male pros, who are all shirtless. C'mon, if this were a male contestant dancing with a bunch of scantily clad female pros it would look so gross and I can't say it's a good look when the genders are switched. She's just so … leering about it all.

They're putting together salsa and paso doble. I love the speed with which these two dance. It's dizzying and yet precise. Lindsay very smartly pulls in some of the tricks Jordan's gotten praise for in past routines, like the aerial and the over-the-shoulder flip.

Carrie Ann thinks Lindsay has grown as a pro by being partnered with Jordan. Len says Jordan is the "most complete" male celebrity ever on Dancing with the Stars. Bruno calls him "impeccable."


Carrie Ann: 10; Len: 10; Bruno: 10

For the first time ever, fan voting is going on during the live finale. But only for the Eastern and Central time zones. Sorry, Mountain and West Coast viewers.

They announce that Jordan and Frankie will be headlining the live tour - Jordan might be enough to finally get me to go to one of these.

The final three couples are forced to listen to Nick Lachey sing while not looking like they want to throw up from nerves. It's fun for everybody.

Unsurprisingly, Frankie comes in third.

While they're doing the big drumroll for the final announcement, Mark Ballas looks like he just swallowed a lemon. Did he get a tip off about the results? Is he that pessimistic? Is this just how his nerves affect him?

Moment of truth...and the big winner is Jordan & Lindsay!

I'm really tickled with this one. Both of the top couples were really, really good.

Tom says in the Spring they're back with a special four-week "All athlete" competition. Huh. I wonder if that's in addition to, or instead of, a regular season in the spring. Stay tuned to find out...

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