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The Times
  • TV Show Recaps - Dancing with the Stars Episode Recap: Tuesday, Nov. 26, 2013

  • It's themoment120 minutes we've all been waiting for: the Season 17 finale ofDancing with the Stars. Who will go home with the Mirrorball trophy? Judging byour poll, TVGuide.com users are putting their money on Amber Riley and Derek Hough. Will ...
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  • It's the moment 120 minutes we've all been waiting for: the Season 17 finale of Dancing with the Stars. Who will go home with the Mirrorball trophy? Judging by our poll, TVGuide.com users are putting their money on Amber Riley and Derek Hough. Will they be proven right?
    The episode opens with all of the season's contestants - hey, remember Keyshawn Johnson and Christina Milian? - shimmying into the ballroom. But of course, the focus of tonight will be on the three remaining finalists: Jack Osbourne, Amber Riley and Corbin Bleu.
    The three remaining pairs have had less than 24 hours to prep their final fusion routines for tonight's show - which Len describes as the hardest challenge they've had to face thus far. But before the show gets to that, viewers are treated to the usual finale fluff, including live performances from Enrique Iglesias, Ylvis, Colbie Caillat (twice) and Lady Antebellum.
    Amber and Derek Hough also have to revisit their freestyle from Monday, after being chosen as the night's repeat performer by fans on Twitter. If it's even possible, the routine is even better than it was the first time. Amber looks more relaxed and the choreography is just as impressive even without the element of surprise.
    Team "Foxing Awesome" (Jack and Cheryl Burke, Derek and Amber, Corbin and Karina Smirnoff, and Brant Daugherty and Peta Murgatroyd) also get to repeat their group performancefrom Week 7, accompanied by a live performance of "The Fox" by Ylvis. There's also an all-female pro/troupe group performance and an all-male pro/troupe group performance.
    Of course, all the previously-eliminated contestants get one final time in the spotlight as well. Bill Nye and Tyne Stecklein do a cha-cha to "Weird Science," with Bill doing flips and splits all over the place! Has he been taking some superjuice since being eliminated or something?! "It was like he was a completely different person!" a wide-eyed Tom Bergeron says after. Valerie Harper and Tristan McManus' dance, set to Colbie Caillat singing "What a Wonderful World," is also very touching, especially because Valerie points out beforehand that she was "supposed to be dead in March."
    At long last, it's time for the final dances! ("We've only got another three hours, and then we award a prize," Tom quips.)
    Corbin & Karina (Cha-cha/Foxtrot): Icona Pop singing "We could do this all night" are really fitting lyrics for Corbin and Karina, who have been the most consistently strong pair in the competition this season. They fall out of sync once or twice during the cha-cha portion of this fusion dance, and it's definitely not their strongest number, but does its job in terms of showing what a strong dancer Corbin is. He sweetly says it's because he got "lost in the moment" of his last dance with Karina, and his adoration of her seems completely genuine.Score: 27
    Page 2 of 2 - Jack & Cheryl (Paso doble/Salsa): Jack and Cheryl have never done a salsa before, and Jack says of their fusion dance: "I don't know whether it's a reward or a punishment." The only thing punished here, however, is the dance itself, which Jack and Cheryl tame into submission like two circus performers. I have to say, with Bill gone, Jack is the frontrunner if the show is based solely on overall improvement throughout the competition. (Len sort of notes this in his critique.) Carrie says he was "a hair flat-footed" on the salsa, which Jack says he only recently learned wasn't "something you ate." HA.Score: 27
    Amber & Derek (Samba/Quickstep): Amber has really had a late surge in this competition. A few weeks ago, I never would have said that she'd be the one to beat in the final, but ... she is. Like Corbin and Karina's final dance, this isn't her and Derek's strongest routine, but it's solid enough. And she doesn't have any of the glaring missteps that Corbin or Jack did. The judges love it. "It was like a brand new style of dance," Carrie Ann tells them.Score: 30
    Now for the big announcement. The pair in third place is ... Jack and Cheryl. Jack ties his sister Kelly with a bronze finish, and it's true that he's not at the same level as Corbin and Amber, so this is fair.
    So which couple is going home with the Mirrorball? This isn't an easy choice. They both deserve it.
    It's ...
    Amber and Derek. It's Derek's fifth time winning the competition. It's hard not to feel bad for Corbin and Karina, who really haven't faltered at all in the contest.
    And that's a wrap, folks! I've enjoyed recapping this weekly circus with you all. What did you think of the results? Which of the fusion dances was your favorite? And which stars would you like to see on the next season of Dancing? Sound off in the comments!
    View original Dancing with the Stars Episode Recap: Tuesday, Nov. 26, 2013 at TVGuide.com
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