I also want to say that I'm thrilled, really, really, really thrilled that Neil was in the final four because watching this reminded me why I was so uninterested in the finale last year. My fave wasn't there and it's so, so heavy-final four (as it should be). Uhm, unless your name is Sara. Okay then. I did love her routines chosen, but that many? Really?
As I edited into my last post, Neil coming in third was way, way, WAY better than I ever thought he would do, so I'm happy about that. And I'm really happy that his reveal came with Sabra because I love, love, LOVE those two together. And I was waiting and watching after Sabra's (clearly pre-ordained) win was revealed to see if Neil would be the first person back up on stage and sure enough, after she won, she and Danny hugged, then Danny left the stage while Cat/Sabra hugged. Next shot showed Neil, with Danny behind him and then the rest coming up to Sabra, and Neil -- still in his 'Time' suit -- carrying the flowers for Sabra. He gave her the flowers, was the first to her and was the first to give her a hug. I LOVED THAT!
I also loved seeing my three absolute favorite routines by him tonight. As I loved his reaction to his placement, his smile, his genuine looking happiness at how far he got, the way he stroked the flowers, the way he made sure to thank the people in his hometown who voted and single out those who were there. He made me dang, dang proud to be a fan tonight.
Congrats to all of the final four, I would have been happier with a different final four (as long as Neil and Sabra were there), but I can not and will not say that a single one of them did not deserve to be there. I think if Lacey had tried out next year or the year after, she would have won. This was too close. Just too close to Benji's win. Danny is an amazing dancer, he still doesn't do anything for me personally, but he is an amazing dancer and deserved to be number two. Is Sabra the best dancer? No. But she touched me more than any other dancer from the earliest point (who stuck around -- I did love my Ricky best to start out) on. Yeah, Neil overtook her, but I never did NOT love Sabra, and while I did not vote for her -- all of 'em went to Neil, of course -- she was definitely my favorite after Neil, so I was happy with her win.
In the end though, it's all about the Neil for me. I love him, love him, love him and I'm so very proud of him. Lovely lad, indeed.