Strictly Come Dancing 2020 ended on Saturday after a shorter but largely successful streak amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Bill Bailey fended off competition from HRVY, Maisie Smith and Jamie Laing
to be crowned winner of this year with his partner Oti Mabuse.
The 55-year-old took the title of Oldest Winner Strictly from Joe McFadden, who won it in 2017 at the age of 42. Mabuse also becomes the first professional to triumph two years in a row.
The finale included music by Robbie Williams and a group performance by the show’s professional dancers.
It was an eventful and unusual series. Here are seven of the most memorable moments:
1. Anton Du Beke’s beginnings as a judge
“After a lot of persuasion, Anton reluctantly agreed to intervene,” joked Claudia Winkleman when Motsi Mabuse had to take two weeks off to self-isolate.
It’s no secret that Anton is keen to join the Strictly panel after more than 15 years as one of the show’s professional dancers, but so far he hasn’t made the jump.
That finally changed this year and many viewers were surprised that he was actually quite good, albeit a little generous with his scores.
2. Bailey’s delight
Bill and Oti’s dance to The Sugarhill Gang’s Rapper’s Delight was by far the biggest viral moment on this show – it was the only routine to cross the million mark on YouTube, with several million more. watch it on Twitter.
It’s easy to see why – Bailey could easily have fallen into the trap of daddy’s embarrassing dance, but instead he fully embarked on a routine that is chock-full of content and detail. He even found the time to rap the lyrics at one point. Her dance wasn’t perfect, but it didn’t matter. It was a turning point for him and for the series.
“The three members of the current Sugarhill Gang sent me a personal video message of congratulations and thanks for using their song,” Bailey then wrote in The Telegraph. “I’m still a little dizzy with all of this to be honest, but in a good way. I even became a Gif.”
3. Jamie and Karen get questionable honor
We are in 2039. The coronavirus has been eradicated for a long time. Humans travel by hovercraft. All packages are delivered by drones. And Jamie and Karen survived another week in the final two of Strictly.
Last week’s semi-final saw Ranvir Singh knocked out despite never being in the dance-off before, much to the amazement of viewers who had also just put Jamie there for the fourth time.
It was the first time in Strictly History that a couple had survived the dance four times, even surpassing last year’s Mike Bushell, who was knocked out in his fourth appearance.
“I know a lot of people think dance-offs are really bad, but for us they’ve been one of the best things ever,” Karen said earlier this week, “because during a dance -off [Jamie] everything is fine, and i have never seen this before. Usually people get scared in a dance, but for us it was like, ‘Come on let’s bring it, we deserve to be here.’ “
4. This Simpsons routine
Max George of Wanted may not have lasted long in the competition, but this routine from The Simpsons of Movie Week will be remembered for a long time by viewers Strictly, for better or for worse.
We loved it, a lot of people hated it, but either way the creativity is flawless.
5. A single victim of Covid
The surge in publicity surrounding the first same-sex couple on Strictly was quickly extinguished after Nicola Adams found herself in the final two early in the series, then had to give up entirely.
Her partner, Katya Jones, tested positive for Covid-19, which meant she and Nicola had to self-isolate for two weeks, making their continued participation on the show unviable.
But thankfully, she was the show’s only coronavirus victim, with HRVY just managing to return in time for the show’s launch after testing positive during rehearsals.
The Strictly team overbooked this series to allow a few celebs to step down due to Covid, but as only one did, we ended up with an unusual (albeit not unprecedented) four-way final.
6. Priscilla, queen of complaints
Away from competitive dance, there have been many notable group and guest performances this year.
The group dances were all filmed in advance so that the professionals could knock them out in one fell swoop while isolating themselves together in a hotel. Additionally, we have had guest performances on the results of The Vamps, Gary Barlow and the cast of & Juliet shows.
But the BBC has received more than 150 complaints after professional dancers Gorka, Johannes and Giovanni appeared trailing during a routine for Priscilla, Queen Of The Desert during Musical Week.
This is actually not the first time the series has mingled with the drag. Although, to be fair, Craig Revel Horwood’s drag performance on last year’s series was so impressive and compelling that we bet a lot of viewers didn’t even realize it was him.
7. CGI, street dance and Chatterpillar by Claudia
Social distancing meant that the contestants couldn’t all snuggle up with Claudia as usual, so the informal name of the upstairs area changed from already glowing Clauditorium to Chatterpillar maybe even better.
Other changes this year include significantly increased use of CGI. From Bill kneeling in front of a huge digital elephant to Clara Amfo dancing on a gigantic virtual record player, it added a new dimension to the dance, although not all viewers were enthusiastic.
And finally, it was the year that street dancing really reigned supreme. Not introduced until 2018, it became the default option for Couple’s Choice. It’s garnered disapproval from fans of traditional ballrooms, but we’re totally here for it.
The finalists in quotes
Earlier this week, the four finalists spoke to BBC News and other media about their experiences on this year’s show.
One of the most remarkable things for HRVY is how much the experience has aged him. “It’s a really weird thing, I do what my dad and grandpa do now, which I really hate: every time I get up and down I make noises, it’s just because that my body and my knees are in agony, ”he said.
Despite his sore muscles, the 21-year-old’s participation in the series sparked the interest of young viewers in dancing. “I got so many comments and DMs from young people who watched the show saying they want to dance. And not just the cool street dancing, the Latin stuff, salsa and cha-cha, this whole generation of dancing is coming. Hope we can inspire the younger ones to dance because we are having so much fun. “
While HRVY may have inspired other young people to take up dancing, there is another competitor looking after the other end of the spectrum.
“Guys get a bit shy sometimes, especially guys my age, they feel like they’re going to be called the dancer daddy,” Bill Bailey said. “And I think if I show that I can go out and watch a little more than someone dragging themselves around, then why not?” On encouraging older people to try dancing, he adds, “If that’s a consequence of my being on the show, that’s wonderful.”
His partner Oti Mabuse revealed, “I had a conversation with Rob Brydon, and he said he always looked Strictly, and he always saw the older gentleman being a comedic act. But for the first time ever. , when he saw Bill, he thought, ‘Oh my God, when I look Strictly, there’s a possibility that I could go far. It’s just a different take, because he’s a respected man and is a respectable figure in English society if he ever got to Strictly he would be taken seriously. “
Jamie laing reached the final despite struggling whenever he didn’t have Karen Hauer by his side. “If I’m alone on the dance floor it’s no-no, I have to be connected with Karen most of the time, because if I’m doing a solo dance, that’s where things go wrong,” he’s laughing.
Laing has landed in the dance-off several times, as has his fellow finalist Maisie Smith. But, she says, it only served to motivate her. “Being in the bottom two kind of made me realize how much it meant to me, and it gave me a huge boost to keep working as hard as possible,” she says. “And I think that was the turning point for me that got me thinking, ‘I have to put it all in this,’ and I think it paid off since.”
The dances and songs for Saturday’s final were:
- Maisie and Gorka: Samba (played at Conga! By Gloria Estefan), Showdance (We Need A Little Christmas by Idina Menzel), Quickstep (When You’re Smiling by Andy Williams)
- HRVY and Janette: Jive (Faith by Stevie Wonder feat. Ariana Grande), Showdance (Boogie Wonderland by Earth, Wind & Fire), American Smooth (One Singular Sensation from A Chorus Line)
- Bill and Oti: Quickstep (Talk To The Animals by Bobby Darin) Showdance (The Show Must Go On by Queen), Couple’s Choice (Rapper’s Delight by The Sugarhill Gang)
- Jamie and Karen Charleston (Zero To Hero by Hercules), Showdance (I’m Still Standing by Elton John), Couple’s Choice (Gonna Make You Sweat by C + C Music Factory)
- Come strictly dance