Can you believe it’s the end of Season Seven? And that the winner is about to be named? And it won’t be Alex? Excuse me while I take a moment… anyway, it’s been a long, strange season of injuries, crying judges, National Dance Day plugs and some really great dancing. Looking at the final three, it’s hard to say which one was better or who’s more likely to take home the $250,000 prize. But, as it’s a two hour marathon of endless timewasters and some good dancing, let’s just get to it, shall we?

[Full recap of Thursday's (Aug. 12) "So You Think You Can Dance" finale after the break...]

Aw, the opening number is the whole gang – the top eleven and the all-stars. Even Alex is in there, doing some chair dancing to this Christopher Scott piece.  It’s like “Glee,” except the chair is only temporary and no one’s singing. At the end of the routine, Cat promises to not only name the winner, but says we’ll get a performance by a “genuine superstar.” Don’t ask me why, but I’m extremely doubtful.

The judges table is might crowded tonight, and it’s apparently not enough to just introduce everyone and get the show moving. Instead, we have to see Nigel’s hair through the seasons. Then Mia’s malapropisms. And discover that Adam is the man of a thousand faces, most of which seem to be variations on Blue Steel. Ben Stiller must be so proud. Joining our regular judges are Toasty, Stacey Tookey, Kenny Ortega and Mary Murphy. Whose hair extensions are looking ridiculous, and not in a good way. It’s like she scalped all three original Charlie’s Angels, dyed their hair a dishwater blonde, then stapled the whole mess together. Oh, and attacked it with a curling iron. Seriously, Mary, you’re too old to look like a member of “Jersey Shore.”

Time for the judges to pick the routines they’d like to see. Kenny picks Toasty’s Shoeless Joe piece for Kent and all-star Neil. Kenny thinks this is the routine that made Kent the front runner of the show. I can’t disagree. Again, Kent’s just made for Broadway revivals.

Nigel picks Stacey Tookey’s homeless/”Mad World” routine for Billy Bell. I do love this dance, too. I still can’t believe Billy got the boot after this. This may actually be better the second time around.
 
Hey, Neil Patrick Harris in the audience! Love him.
 
Now it’s time for a performance by dance crew Quest. It’s all kinds of good and Nigel is inspired to shake his clenched hands triumphantly over it, although I’m already finding this night of a thousand dances a little wearing. It’s just an awfully long time to wait to get to a nugget of information that will take less than thirty seconds to reveal. And I get it, it’s all about the dance, but c’mon, how much patience can you really ask for?
 
Time for Mia’s pick. She chooses a filthy routine by NappyTabs for Comfort and Adechike, “Fallen.” Ironically, I think this is more Comfort’s routine than Adechike’s, but hey, the competition’s over, so who cares.
 
Oh, no. Time for a romance recap for the season. Most of which was on the stage. Or involved groping Cat. Although it is cute ending on Adam proposing marriage to Nigel. Still, timewasting has begun!
 
Now, it’s Kent and Anya dancing to “My First Kiss.” Cat doesn’t say who picked this one, and honestly, I can’t imagine any of the judges picking it. Yeah, still not liking this one much. Granted, Kent is more convincing as a bad boy than he was at the beginning of the season, but that’s relative.
 
Time for Toasty’s pick. He wants to see Robert and Dominic do the NappyTabs hip-hop clown dance. This was, of course, super fun, and it gave Robert a controlled space to get his goofy on, which was probably necessary.
 
Oh my GOD, are we trotting out National Dance Day again? It’s great that people got out and dances, and I love that NASA sent video, but seriously, there’s always a Very Important Holiday on the calendar, like National Pet Memorial Day or National Secretary’s Day, and maybe there’s an initial flush of interest, but mostly no one cares if there aren’t TV cameras around. One day out of the year isn’t curing obesity or colon cancer, people.
 
Time for Nigel’s performance. Oh, great, he’s pretending to have stubbed his toe and a seven-year-old kid offers to perform in his place. This has the misfortune of being cloyingly cute (thanks to Nigel camping it up) and also involves tap dancing. And it goes on forever.
 
And now, more tap by two brothers Nigel likes. They are clearly very talented. And I still hate tap.
 
Nigel picks a dance – Lauren and Pasha’s tango. Still a super sexy routine, and very cleverly, it slows the tango down enough that someone who isn’t a professional tango dancer can do it without looking like an idiot. That being said, Lauren could probably handle anything the choreographers dished out, honestly.

Adam’s turn. He picks Travis Wall’s “Fix You” piece for Robert and Allison. Which Adam says is the one that makes everyone cry, which is kind of overselling it, as Travis pretty much ripped off last season’s cancer dance. But it did make our overly emotional judges cry like babies, so I guess that’s enough. Seriously, after this season I think everyone needs their meds checked, because I think these guys teared up over toothpaste commercials.
 
It’s time to announce the winner! What? This early! Oh, no it’s not. We need to see Russell, the season six winner, dance with Lil’ C first. And we need to watch more dancing. And see more guest stars. Oh, crap, this is going to take two solid hours, and don’t you forget it.
 
Mary is picking Dominic and Jose’s dance, just the thought of which makes her start screaming in such a way that I remember exactly how nice it was not having her as a judge this season. I mean, she is a great, great judge of ballroom. Couldn’t ask for better. But that hot tamale train was making me deaf.
 
And another routine, the winner of “SYTYCD” U.K., Charlie Bruce, who will dances with Neil. It’s all very nice and floaty. Wouldn’t it be nice if we had a chick win the U.K. and U.S. versions?  
 
And now it’s time for all the finalists to come on stage. Eeek! Robert emerges in his Indian dance outfit. Now it’s time for one dancer to be eliminated. The dancer in third place is…Robert. Waaaah! But I guess someone had to come in third. Have to hand it to Robert, though, he really did improve the last few weeks and came into  his own. And stopped acting like a goofball. That alone, huge.
 
We watch his montage, and he thanks the show and his voters and is very humble and grateful. Poor Robert.
 
Adam makes his pick. He wants to see Lauren dance cowboy hip-hop with Twitch. Have to say, Lauren is pretty damn good at the hip-hop. But, again, she’s good at everything.
 
Now, Cat picks her dance. But it can’t be danced live. It’s the Sonya Tayeh routine by Alex and Allison to “Hallelujah.” Not actually what I would have picked for Alex, if we only get one routine from him. Not that it’s not fabulous and moving and all kinds of wow, but watching it again, you realize how much of the dance’s power is from the music. And if I had to see another hip-hop routine, I’d pick Alex’s dance with Twitch over Lauren’s.
 
Stacey’s pick is Billy and Robert dancing Bollywood. Mia picks Travis Wall’s Neil and Kent routine. All good, yada yada yada, can we just get to the big reveal?
 
Time for a performance from Black Gold performing the “SYTYCD” sign-off song. Yeah, still not memorable, sorry. If you held a gun to my head I still wouldn’t remember they play this on the show all the time. And the lead singer has a voice that’s only slightly less whiny than my vacuum cleaner.  
 
More commercials! And Cat promises one last surprise. I’m guessing this is the big star she mentioned at the beginning of the show, because no one we’ve seen thus far qualifies.
 
Hmm. Cat says a dance superstar wanted to recreate Alex’s dance with Twitch. And it’s… Ellen Degeneres? Are you friggin’ serious? I am SO disappointed. Nothing against Ellen, but this was such a great routine and Ellen is not a dancer. This is like watching Betty White rock out. Which would be funny for a half a minute, then not interesting. At all. Ellen gets through the routine without breaking a sweat and then plugs National Dance Day.
 
So, time for the winner to be announced. Except we have to take a look at both Kent and Lauren’s journeys. The winner of season seven is… Lauren. Wow! I’m surprised, but I’m thrilled, too. And she is presented with a jug of Gatorade. Personally, I’d prefer a big check, but that’s just me. All of the dancers clamor on stage to hug Lauren, including Robert, but I don’t see Kent. That could be me, since I’m watching on a tiny computer screen, but did he disappear? I wouldn’t blame him. Coming in second, even though that’s still pretty amazing, is also pretty crushing and he may have needed a minute.
 
I have to say, it’s great to see that Lauren, who was so consistently strong and so versatile, is the winner of the show. Would I have cried if Kent won? Maybe a little, only because he isn’t quite as adaptable – he kicks ass with those Broadway numbers, but the minute they put him in leather or a dog collar, it just rings false. That being said, Adam was absolutely right that he’ll work, and work a lot. Same could be said for Robert. All in all, a good ending to season seven. But I’m still hoping that Anthony Burrell and Alex are back for season eight, just saying.
 
Do you think Lauren was the best dancer? Do you think having Ellen Degeneres on the show was a great idea or a big mistake? And are you hoping Alex comes back for season eight (say yes)?