'The Masked Dancer' Crowns a Season 1 Champion!

*Caution: Spoilers ahead if you haven’t watched the season finale!

The Masked Dancerhas crowned its first-ever champion! After a fun and exciting finale, only one hopeful could walk away with the title.

Following a hard-fought and skillfully danced season, Wednesday’s finale all came down to Tulip, Cotton Candy and Sloth — and all three hopefuls brought their A-game.

As the costumed contestants danced their hearts out, the panel of celebrity sleuths got their last clues at the hidden stars’ secret identities, and a chance to submit their final guesses.

Tulip kicked the finale off with a wild and lively performance set to “Kings & Queens” by Ava Max. From side flips to sky-high lifts to ballet flourishes, Tulip left it all on the dance floor in her attempt to claim the crown.

Sloth hit the dance floor next, and brought an unprecedented level of excitement to his high-energy routine, set to The Struts’ cover of the iconic, chaotic classic “Ballroom Blitz.”

Finally, Cotton Candy brought the feels with her number, set to Kesha’s rendition of “This Is Me,” and brought tears to the panelists’ eyes with her breathtaking, gymnastic routine dedicated to self-confidence and emotional determination.

After all the last dances were performed and the audience votes were cast, it was time for the big reveal, in which all three contestants finally unmask as the winner was announced.

The first star to unmask — thus the season’s third-place finalist — was Tulip, who revealed herself to be none other than actress and professional dancer Maddie Ziegler!

https://youtube.com/watch?v=KS6XoWWk3QM%3Ffeature%3Doembed

This meant it all came down to Sloth and Cotton Candy! After a long, drama-filled cliffhanger pause, host Craig Robinson announced the grand winner to be Cotton Candy!

After some final guesses from the panel, Sloth unmasked and was revealed to be Dancing With the Stars pro Maksim Chmerkovskiy.

https://youtube.com/watch?v=zXtSRPgZW0E%3Ffeature%3Doembed

Finally, fans learned who it was that earned their love while dancing under the Cotton Candy costume. This season’s grand champion turned out to be Olympic gold medalist Gabby Douglas!

“It’s my job to make it look super light, but I’ve never done anything like this before,” an unmasked Douglas told the panel. “I’ve never trained with a mask on. It was a first time performing and not being judged. I had so much fun, and I’m so grateful and so honored.”

https://youtube.com/watch?v=a9_xMbPUhbQ%3Ffeature%3Doembed

ET spoke with Douglas on Wednesday afternoon, and she opened up about what it felt like to be on the show and to become the first champion.

“Honestly, this is one of the best experiences I’ve ever had,” Douglas marveled. “I really got to go outside of myself and do something that is so outside my normal, in a full costume and being in character.”

“I really got to challenge myself with these dances, and doing cool flips and tricks,” she continued. “It was very, very fun…. I love a good challenge.”

While her experience as a gymnast helped her with rehearsing and dedicating herself to learning new dances, she said performing with a partner, and evoking emotion through movement, was a “completely different type of vibe.”

Congrats to the new Masked Dancer champion!

If you just can’t get enough costumed craziness, the hotly anticipated fifth season of The Masked Singer is returning to Fox on Wednesday, Mar. 10 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on Fox!

Comedian Niecy Nash has signed on to guest host this season, after Nick Cannon tested positive for COVID-19 earlier this month. However, the longtime host is expected to return later in the season.

For more on this wild and wonderful debut season ofThe Masked Dancer, check out the video below!

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