Strictly Come Dancing final – what you need to know

Nicola Agius, Tom Eames
Photo credit: BBC/Jay Brooks / Matt Burlem

From Digital Spy

Yes, it's that time of year again – the Strictly Come Dancing final is upon us.

There are just four celebrities left in the competition, which is being described as the most impressive series to date. But when we will find out who's won? And who is favourite to get the all-important Glitter Ball Trophy?

Here's everything you need to know about the Strictly Come Dancing 2017 final...

1. When is the Strictly Come Dancing 2017 final?

The last ever episode of this year's Strictly will be on BBC One, Saturday December 16 at 6.30pm. Yep, that's just nine days before Christmas!

The Strictly Come Dancing live shows officially kicked off on Saturday, September 23 on BBC One at 6.25pm.

Zoe Ball's spin-off show Strictly Come Dancing: It Takes Two launched on Monday, September 25, on BBC Two at 6.30pm. It's now on at the same time on BBC Two every weekday.The last episode this series will be broadcast on BBC Two, Friday December 15 at 6pm.

2. Who are the Strictly Come Dancing 2017 finalists and who is set to win?

Joe McFadden – 8/13

Photo credit: BBC

Holby City's Joe McFadden proved all the doubters wrong when he made his ballroom debut on Saturday, September 23. Originally, Ladbrokes had him down as just seventh favourite to win – now, he's favourite to win!

"Strictly is one of the biggest, most entertaining shows on TV and being asked to be part of it is a once in a lifetime opportunity that I'm thrilled and terrified about in equal measures," he said of the show.

Debbie McGee – 5/2

Photo credit: Rex Shutterstock

Debbie signed up for Strictly as it was the wish of her late husband Paul Daniels.

The magic icon competed back in 2010 with professional Ola Jordan and finished in second-to-last place. But it looks like Debbie is set to do better than Paul, and after some impressive performances, she's being tipped as a potential winner.

At one point, she was favourite to win, but is now in second place.

Alexandra Burke – 6/1

Photo credit: ITV

X Factor winner Alexandra was tipped to win Strictly Come Dancing 2017 by bookies.

However, after a disappointing couple of weeks on the dance floor, she's slipped into third place with the bookies.

She said: "I'm a singer, not a dancer at all. This is such a challenge. It's the one show I've wanted to be a part of for the longest time. It's a massive dream come true."

Gemma Atkinson – 14/1

Photo credit: ITV

In fourth place in the odds is Emmerdale star Gemma – the bookies' confidence in her ability has slipped in recent weeks after she failed to deliver on the dance floor.

From the very start, the actress admitted she wasn't going to find Strictly easy. She told BBC Breakfast: "Learning to dance is so out of my comfort zone – so I just want to challenge myself. I'm beyond excited and incredibly nervous, but looking forward to learning a new skill."

3. What dances did the celebs perform in the semi-finals?

Alexandra and Gorka danced the Samba to 'Finally' by Ce Ce Peniston.

Debbie and Giovanni danced the Jive to 'I'm So Excited' by The Pointer Sisters.

Gemma and Aljaz danced the Tango to 'My Sharona' by The Knack.

Mollie and AJ danced the Samba to 'Whenever, Wherever' by Shakira.

Joe and Katya danced the American Smooth to 'Have You Met Miss Jones' by Robbie Williams.

4. What dances will the celebs be performing in the final?

Debbie and Giovanni will perform the Salsa to 'Can't Take My Eyes Off You' by Boys Town Gang (Judges' Pick).

They will then perform the Showdance to 'One Day I'll Fly Away' by Vaults.

Alexandra and Gorka will perform the American Smooth to 'Wouldn't It Be Loverly' from My Fair Lady (Judges' Pick).

They will then perform the Showdance to 'There's No Business Like Showbusiness' by Ethel Merman.

Gemma and Aljaz will perform the Paso Doble to 'Viva La Vida' by Coldplay (Judges' Pick).

They will then perform the Showdance to 'Show Me How You Burlesque' by Christina Aguilera.

Joe and Katya will perform the Viennese Waltz to 'Somewhere My Love' from Doctor Zhivago (Judges' Pick).

They will then perform the Showdance to 'You Make My Dreams' by Hall & Oates.

5. Which Strictly Come Dancing celebs have already been eliminated?

Mollie King – eliminated week eleven

Photo credit: David M Benett/Dave Benett/Getty Images

Oh dear. Some weeks back, Mollie was a contender to win. However, The Saturdays singer Mollie was the 11th celebrity to leave Strictly Come Dancing 2017, which means she's just missed out on a place in the Grand Final.

Speaking after her exit, Mollie made sure to wish all of her fellow Strictly contestants luck for the final and thanked everyone for being a part of her journey.

"I have so many thank yous. Thank you to everyone who has voted us through to the semi-finals, it's so far beyond what we ever thought would happen; I'm so grateful for that. Thank you to all the professionals, you have been so much fun and so encouraging," she said.

"Thank you to the judges, you have just been unbelievable and I will forever remember everything that you said and I will take it on board when I'm dancing at home or wherever I'm dancing. And to Tess, Claudia and Zoe, you have been amazing, you have been so just lovely.

"And above all, AJ, you have been just incredible and you have been my hero for the last couple of months, so thank you so much. I couldn't have done any of it without you."

Davood Ghadami – eliminated week ten

Photo credit: BBC

EastEnders star Davood, who plays the Square's resident ladies' man Kush Kazemi, lost his place in the competition after failing to secure enough public votes.

Opening up about his decision to compete for the trophy, he said: "Having the opportunity to take part in this year's Strictly is such an honour.

"It's going to be exciting, challenging and terrifying all at once and I am so looking forward to stepping out of my comfort zone and learning to dance."

Unfortunately, all that enthusiasm wasn't enough to help him win.

Susan Calman – eliminated week nine

Photo credit: Getty Images

Susan, who is best known for her work on Radio 4 as well as hosting CBBC show Top Class, had been practising ever since she was invited to be on the show. She was doing everything in her power to stay in the competition for as long as possible but it wasn't enough.

"Being on Strictly is a dream come true. I've been practising in my kitchen to the nation," she said.

"I am an enthusiastic home dancer and now on Saturday nights I'll be dancing in other people's homes in a (hopefully) entertaining way. I am terrified but excited to start my Strictly journey."

Sadly, she was eliminated in week nine, but at least it was towards the latter end of the series.

Jonnie Peacock – eliminated week eight

Photo credit: Anthony Devlin/PA Wire / PA Images

Jonnie made history as the first Paralympian to ever grace the ballroom on the BBC One series – and industry insiders had high expectations of him.

"I think this is the first time they've had a disabled person on the show. I'm hoping we can change the stigma," he said.

"I've got no previous dance history outside of the occasional 'worm' at a mate's party, and I know this will be a challenge and new experience. I can't wait to see what I achieve and how far I can push myself."

Although he's no longer in the competition, he certainly impressed on the dance floor.

Ruth Langsford – eliminated week seven

Photo credit: ITV / YouTube

Ruth wasn't the most natural dancer on Strictly and was often bottom of the leaderboard.

The Loose Women and This Morning presenter struggled mastering routines, but lasted in the competition far longer than anybody expected.

Bookmakers had tipped her to leave the show for weeks before she was finally eliminated. But her huge fan based kept voting to save her.

Although she may not have left the show thinking she is the most talented performer, at least Ruth walked away knowing how popular she is!

Aston Merrygold – eliminated week six

Photo credit: Jon Furniss

Nobody saw this one coming.

Aston's sudden departure sparked outrage from the nation as he had been the clear favourite to win Strictly Come Dancing 2017.

He lost his place on the show after Craig Revel Horwood harshly awarded him just four points.

But there's no bad blood. After his elimination, Aston said: "All you Strictly pros, you are all ridiculously talented and I've loved watching and learning from you all. But the biggest shout out and thank you goes to my dance partner [Janette Manrara] also known as the Latin sensation!

"You have made this whole experience perfect! From amazing routines every week, to fun and help in rehearsals, to being a great friend from it take 2 to chill time with team 45!"

Simon Rimmer – eliminated week five

Photo credit: Mike Marsland/WireImage / Getty Images

Simon's elimination didn't come as a shock to many.

Not because he was a bad dancer, but because he strongly hinted at it on Sunday Brunch before the results were aired – oops!

But we miss him (and his Buzz Lightyear outfit) all the same.

Brian Conley – eliminated week four

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It wasn't Brian's elimination that got people talking, but rather an alleged tantrum he threw after the results were announced.

Following his departure from the show this weekend, The Sun reported that the star bizarrely complained to the audience the studios were a "shit-hole" and that the toilets were a dump (excuse the pun).

However, he later spoke out to explain that the so-called 'rant' was just a joke and was meant to make people laugh.

Charlotte Hawkins – eliminated week three

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Charlotte was booted off the competition pretty early on – and was ripped to pieces by her Good Morning Britain colleague Piers Morgan for it. But she doesn't have any bad feelings about it.

After the results were announced, she said: "I've had an amazing time, such an amazing time, it's been brilliant from start to finish, it really has been.

"I was trying to get better, I'm going out knowing that I gave it my best and that's all you can do."

Reverend Richard Coles – eliminated week two

Photo credit: BBC

He didn't exactly wow us on the dance floor. And Strictly insiders admitted from the very start that he would probably be one of the first to get the boot – and he was.

Speaking after his elimination, Reverend Richard said: "It's been a joy. It's been completely joyous. I only forgot to reckon into my strategy that I can't actually dance!"

Chizzy Akudolu – eliminated week one

Photo credit: Kieron McCarron / BBC