SPOILER ALERT: If you don’t want to know who the new “Dancing With the Stars” champion is, stop reading now.
Momentum that began building early in the show’s 13th season carried over into the “Dancing With the Stars” finale and saw war veteran-turned soap opera star J.R. Martinez emerge as the latest mirrored ball trophy winner.
Martinez and professional dance partner Karina Smirnoff earned a perfect 30 score from the judges for their final dance on Tuesday night, as did fellow finalists Rob Kardashian and his partner Cheryl Burke.
But when the judges’ scores for the week’s performances were added to the viewers’ votes, Martinez and Smirnoff took the title. Kardashian was the runner-up, and Ricki Lake finished third.
“My friend, you have been an inspiration since the first time you stepped on this floor,” “DWTS” host Tom Bergeron told a gleeful Martinez.
The “All My Children” star replied, “First and foremost, I want to thank everybody who voted for us for 10 weeks. Thank you, America, for believing in us.”
And before hoisting his trophy above his head and getting a victory shoulder ride from Derek Hough, Martinez told Smirnoff, “You are amazing, and I am so grateful I was able to be a part of your first mirrorball trophy. Thank you very much!”
Now, it’s time for season 14, which, yes, is already on ABC’s schedule, for March 19, 2012.