The final of Strictly Come Dancing 2018 is upon us at last and one of this year’s four finalists – Stacey Dooley, Joe Sugg, Faye Tozer and Ashley Roberts – are thrillingly close to lifting the coveted Glitterball Trophy.
We’ll be updating this article LIVE with all the antics on the dance floor tonight.
Watch this space…
8.54pm: AND THE WINNER IS… STACEY DOOLEY
There was a lot of screaming.
8.50pm: Michael Buble singing Such a Night went down a treat. And all the contestants from this series also came back for a final dance. There were awesome lifts from Vick and Graziano, Dr Ranj donned his white coat and Graeme bench-pressed Oti. Love it.
8.26pm: The last paired dance of this year’s series was Joe and Dianne’s Charleston to Cotton Eye Joe by Rednex, which they did all the way back in week two. They scored 38, a huge improvement on their original score of 31. Boos for Craig and Darcey as they revealed their nines!
8.18pm: Faye and Giovanni finished their Strictly journey in style with their Couple’s Choice from earlier in the series, which was Theatre and Jazz to Fever by Peggy Lee. Such a joy to watch and so precise, a third 40, wowzer. So many tens in this year’s final! Faye was very emotional indeed.
8.12pm: Stacey and Kevin got 39 points for their Paso Doble to Malaguena by Brian Setzer the first time, so it’s no surprise they chose it as their Favourite dance. It was fierce and sultry and sassy. The big three. The pair matched their original score and Stacey told Craig, who was responsible for the nine of course, that she’s no longer going to his party. Shade!
8.02pm: Time for the Favourite dances! Ashley and Pasha did the Charleston to Witch Doctor by Don Lang and it was even more goofy and endearing than the first time. “You are a beautiful troll,” smiled Shirley. THIRD 40 of the night.
7.51pm: It was pure rock ‘n’ roll for Joe and Dianne who did their Showdance to I Bet You Look Good On The Dancefloor by Arctic Monkeys. “A wild beast has been let loose on this dance floor,” said Darcey. And wild, it was. 39 points!
Next they’ll be dancing their Charleston from week two, hoping to show how much Joe has improved since then. Bring it on.
7.42pm: Craig was grinning like an idiot after Faye and Giovanni’s Showdance to Lullaby of Broadway by Various Artists, which scored them another perfect 40. Well deserved for an old-school dance brimming with elegance.
Their Favourite dance will be their Couple’s Choice from earlier in the series, which was Theatre and Jazz.
7.35pm: Stacey and Kevin whipped out their Showdance to Land of a Thousand Dances by Jessica Mauboy and it brought the house down. Bruno said it was a medley of “Stacey’s Greatest Tits” and the studio audience (including Mary Berry who I’ve just spotted in the front row) broke into hysterics. They scored 36 thanks to an eight from meanie Craig. Kevin was clearly miffed: “I expect it from Craig in every final I’ve been in. One day I’ll impress you Craig. Every year.”
They’ll be dancing the Paso Doble for their Favourite later on…
7.25pm: Showdance time! Ashley and Pasha chose to do theirs to Keeping Your Head Up by Birdy and they got a standing ovation from the judges and the audience. “You are the epitome of extraordinary,” said Shirley. Wow. “I had a small problem with your right toe, darling, and then I decided to get over myself,” joked Craig. It’s another 40 for these two, unsurprisingly.
And they revealed they’ll be doing the Charleston for their Favourite pick, to end their Strictly journey on a humorous note.
7.15pm: “What a comeback!” marvelled Darcey. Joe and Dianne’s Judges’ Pick was the Paso Doble to Pompeii by Bastille and it was “incandescent” according to Bruno, scoring the pair 39. Joe has stayed true to his word and dyed his hair red to match Dianne’s for the final. It’s a strong look.
And voting lines are now officially OPEN!
7.04pm: Faye and Giovanni’s Judges’ Pick was a smouldering Viennese Waltz to It’s a Man’s World by Seal which they had danced all the way back in week two. Shirley sassed Bruno by bringing up a quote from week two when he told Faye not to listen to the head judge’s criticism so early in the competition. Meow. They clearly did listen as they scored a whopping 40.
6.57pm: “When I first saw this, I said, ‘Watch this girl because she’s a contender’ – and you proved me right,” gushed Bruno. Stacey and Kevin’s Judges’ Pick was the Foxtrot to High Ho Silver Lining by Jeff Beck and they triumphed with a score of 39, six more than the first time. No ten from grumpy Craig!
6.50pm: Ashley and Pasha were first up to open the grand finale – no pressure! They performed the Judges’ Pick which was the Salsa to (I’ve Had The) Time of My Life by Bill Medley and Jennifer Warnes from all the way back in three. Ashley said “we’ve got to go out there and give it a smasher”. And they certainly did.
The pair scored a fabulous 40, beating their original score of 35, and it was a beautiful way to open the final because, as Tess said, “the lift was spectacular”. It was the first 40 of the final, and we have a feeling it won’t be the last…