Longtime Dancing With The Stars judge Len Goodman shocked viewers during Season 31’s Semi-Finals episode, announcing that this will be his final season with the long-running dance competition series.
The 78-year-old has been a staple on dance reality TV for 18 years, first with Strictly Come Dancing in the UK from 2004 until 2016, and then doing double duty for many seasons during his 2005 to 2022 run on DWTS.
“It’s been a huge pleasure to be a huge part of such a wonderful show,” Goodman said during the episode, noting his desire to spend more time with his grandchildren and family.
“I cannot thank you enough, the DWTS family. It has been such a wonderful experience for me. I’m looking forward to next week’s finale. I’m sure it’s going to be absolutely brilliant.”
It’s hard to imagine the series without Goodman’s critical but kind approach to judging celebs as they do their best to keep up with professional dancers. But like any reality TV competition, the show must go on. And so it will.
The DWTS official Twitter account sent out a Tweet shortly after the announcement, thanking him for his 17 years of service to the show.
Giving the biggest thank you to Len Goodman for being a part of our #DWTS family for so many years! 💜 Wishing him nothing but the best as we celebrate his last season before retirement! pic.twitter.com/ho1z65Dsa8
— Dancing with the Stars #DWTS (@officialdwts) November 15, 2022
No word on who will replace him, but considering how former pro Derek Hough joined the panel in recent seasons, there’s always a chance another pro could make the switch.
Catch the season finale, and Goodman’s final appearance on the series, next Monday, November 21, when the winner of Season 31 is crowned. Who do you think will take home the Mirror Ball Trophy?
Dancing With the Stars, Mondays, 8/7c, Disney+