HOLLYWOOD – After more than 10 weeks of competition, it came down to the final three on “Dancing With the Stars.” In one corner there was Meryl and Maks, in another corner Amy and Derek and then there was the underdog Candace and Mark. In the end it was a fight to the finish for two Olympians who fought beyond what many have ever expected and the winner of season 18 were Olympic ice skater Meryl Davis and professional ballroom dancer Maksim Chmerkovskiy.


It was a longtime coming for the bad boy of dancing who has come so close time and time, but Meryl was his secret weapon, which put him over the top. Well-deserved and definitely a tense moment, as I had jitters that Amy and Derek might claim the prize. Both stars were deserving of the Mirror Ball trophy in my opinion.


Candace and Mark found themselves bounced from the final two after being so close. I think many would have been upset if Candace and Mark had made it to the final two, above Meryl and Amy.  There was still plenty of outrage from fans who were furious that James and Peta didn’t make it.


But before we go into the final three, audiences were treated to a encore performance by Peta and James whose freestyle overwhelming won the audiences’ vote. He was absolutely robbed from his shot at being in the top three. There was an extremely cringe worthy moment during rapper Iggy Azalea, as she performed her hit “Fancy.” A bit of technical difficulty caught the performer off guard, but she quickly recovered from the mishap. Still awkward to watch though.


The series just like in the past was a recollection of memorable moments during the season. Something not necessarily needed in my opinion. What was the whole thing with the guest judges this season? I truly don’t think we needed that at all.


All three finalists had one more dance to tackle before ending the season: the fusion challenge. The challenge forced the pros and their partners to fuse two dances together. Up first were Derek and Amy who were tasked with the Argentine Tango and Cha Cha where they scored a perfect 30. Underdogs Candace and Mark fused the Quickstep and Samba, which surprisingly scored Candace 27. Maks and Meryl wrapped up dancing for the season with their fusion of the Foxtrot and Cha Cha, where the duo scored a perfect 30.


Season 18 has been a whirlwind from start to finish, and now I can only wonder what surprises are in store for audiences come season 19. Will fans be treated to another all-star version, or will we see a new crop of celebrities hit the dance floor. Guess we’ll just have to wait until the fall to find out.