What happened in the Strictly Come Dancing final? 8 amazing moments we won’t forget

As Joe and Katya lift the Glitterball Trophy, here are all the best bits of the Strictly final 2017

Strictly Come Dancing 2017

The glitter has been swept up for the final time, a new name is being carved into the Glitterball Trophy and – somewhere – the class of Strictly 2017 is probably heading out onto the dance floor at the most glamorous afterparty of the year. But what moments will we remember from this year’s Strictly Come Dancing?


Here are all the best bits of an epic grand final:

1. Joe and Katya won the Glitterball Trophy!

Strictly Come Dancing 2017 - TX13 LIVE SHOW

“There’s only one word really that will describe that, darling,” Craig Revel Horwood said as Joe McFadden finished his final dance of Strictly 2017. “It has three syllables and it begins with F. Fab-u-lous!”

Joe and his partner Katya Jones have become this year’s Strictly Come Dancing champions, beating Debbie McGee, Alexandra Burke and Gemma Atkinson in the grand final. They scored 118 out of an available 120 points and had a perfect score with their “toy soldiers” Charleston, earning praise from the judges and votes from the public.

Shirley Ballas picked him out as a “dark horse” many weeks ago (as did we!) and she was delighted to see how far he had come. “If I had an 11 paddle for that fleckerl you would be getting it,” she declared. “I’m very proud of you Joe.”

Joe and Katya looked shocked and completely overwhelmed as Tess Daly read out their names, with Joe insisting he had never imagined winning “in a million years”.

2. The class of 2017 came back for a sentimental reunion dance 

The Rev Richard Coles flew in on a cloud! Aston Merrygold did a backflip! Susan Calman was hopping around all over the place! The class of 2017 were Walking on Sunshine, and as Tess Daly said, “It was like the whole series just flashed before our eyes.”

All those wonderful moments from series 15 of Strictly Come Dancing were united in one joyful, upbeat dance. Sure, it’s barely been more than three months since Strictly 2017 began – but we were overwhelmed with a feeling of nostalgia. Let’s rewind and do it all again.

3. As is traditional, Bruno fell off his chair

So close and yet so far! It looked like Bruno Tonioli would make it all the way to the end of the series without falling off his chair, but it was not to be.

The Strictly judge tumbled sideways while Craig Revel Horwood was delivering his verdict on Gemma Atkinson’s final dance of the Strictly final, ejecting himself from his seat and landing dramatically on the floor. As he scrambled to his feet he explained he’d somehow got caught in his own wires.

Did somebody get their wires crossed while setting up the studio?

4. Giovanni’s unique pronunciation of “Debbie”

The judges picked Debbie’s Salsa for her to dance again in the final, and we strongly suspect they just wanted to hear Giovanni say “DEBBIE!” again.

So did we. The dance to Can’t Take My Eyes Off You by Boys Town Gang features Giovanni in an optician’s chair taking an eye test and reading out some letters: “DEH EH BEH BEH I EH” – that spells DUBBIEH, of course. The lovely Debbie McGee seems delighted with Gio, whatever he calls her, and when they went running up to the balcony to chat with Claud they were met with the chant: “Dubbieh, Dubbieh, Dubbieh”.

5. Gemma Atkinson was “stunning” with a sexy Showdance

Gemma Atkinson in Strictly Come Dancing

One of the most amazing partnerships of Strictly 2017 has been Gemma Atkinson and Aljaz Skorjanec, and they did not disappoint with their Showdance to Show Me How You Burlesque by Christina Aguilera. At the beginning of the series Gemma was a little hesitant and unsure on her feet, but in this Showdance – wow.

It was perfectly aimed at Bruno, of course. “Oh yes. Where have you been hiding?” he declared. “You went out there erotic sultry stunning.” And even better: “The quickstep itself was actually technically perfect.”

Shirley Ballas added: “I’m actually quite in shock… you come out there, you lift that leg, you look with that fierce face… you just gave every single thing you had.”

Her Paso Doble was also a hit, with high praise from Darcey: “Gemma you are on fire. The determination, the drama, very strong shaping as well. And actually well done because you held on to the passion until the very last beat of the music and beyond.”

6. Alexandra Burke’s jive will go down in the “Strictly hall of fame”

Alexandra Burke Strictly Come Dancing final

Alexandra Burke killed it with her Proud Mary jive, earning herself a perfect score. “I thought I was watching Tina Turner live!” Bruno exclaimed, adding: “It really is an instant classic. It is my favourite dace of the season and I’m sure it will go down in the Strictly Come Dancing hall of fame.”

As for his feedback, Craig simply stood and clapped, murmuring: “Fantastic”.

“Oh Alexandra you are shining so bright,” said Darcey. “You are outdoing Mr Gorka.” Mr Gorka himself looked understandably put out.

7. Debbie McGee was compared to a Tardis…

Debbie McGee in the Strictly final

… And not because she’s a blue box packed with alien time-travelling technology. But is Bruno a secret Doctor Who fan? Gesturing wildly towards Debbie, he announced: “She’s a Tardis. She defies all the laws of physics and the concept of time. You dance like a 20 year old!”

On a personal note, he added: “You really have exceeded my expectations week after week after week and you have been such a source of inspiration.”

And he wasn’t the only one impressed by the lovely Debbie, who is (in case it wasn’t mentioned) 59 years old. “I just want to bottle a little bit of Debbie McGee,” Darcey said, while Craig added: “This is not the end of anything for you my darling. This is a new beginning and it is just stunning watching you.”

8. Craig Revel Horwood was weirdly… nice?!

The pantomime villain forgot his act. Instead of overly-critical takedowns and long lists of everything everyone did wrong, Craig seemed to be just enjoying the show.

There was a slight boo as he told Alexandra Burke, “Well I thought it was absolutely dreadful…” but then he added: “…because I couldn’t find a single thing wrong.”

The only negative feedback he gave was to Gemma Atkinson, and he did seem to genuinely regret having to be the bad guy: “I liked it but I didn’t love it I’m afraid.” He followed that up quickly with: “I’ll tell you what I did like though, I liked that you danced outside the box.”


Has he turned over a new leaf? Stay tuned for Strictly 2018…