So this is it, the end of Big Brother in the UK. Or, more likely, the end of Big Brother on Channel 4.
I've watched most of the series over the years and I even applied once (in 2002) and now my summers are to be bereft of the show which went from gameshow in the guise of social experiment to an out and out spectacle.
By turns funny, outrageous and controversial, Big Brother changed the face of UK television reality shows, a subject I've blogged on previously.
This year the producers pulled out all the stops to make Big Brother 11 a suiting finale to the show. They upped the production values, made subtle and not-so-subtle references to previous years and tasks and still managed to introduce new features. In some ways they rejuvenated the show and, ironically, saw audiences rise from last year's lows.
But Big Brother 11 was merely a warm up to the show's final final hurrah - Ultimate Big Brother. Unashamedly self-indulgent, Ultimate Big Brother has crammed in old tasks, brought back as many old housemates as were available (and that's a lot!) and even re-instated the infamous Bedsit from Big Brother 5. Davina has gone in, Marcus Bentley (the show's narrator) has gone in) and a mock funeral has been held, complete with wake.
Of course, Big Brother may live on. Channel 5 look set to buy the rights. But one has to think that any resurrected show will be different in look and feel to the existing format. One of the biggest lessons that Channel 4 learnt is that the show needed regular twists - not least as contestants became increasingly able to second guess the intentions of the producers. A new channel will provide an opportunity to bring something fresh to the viewer and surprise the contestants.
But that's all potentially in the future. For Channel 4, and for now, tonight is the end. It'll be a sad occasion, not least for Davina who has fronted all 11 series and for which the show has been her life. There'll not be a dry eye in the house by the time the final curtain comes down.
Ladies and Gentlemen, charge your glasses and join with me in a toast: To Big Brother.
To read my post from the start of this series, click here.