In my last recap, I stated that “The Voice” was promising even more drama in their future episodes. Well, somebody lied. And that somebody was not me. Battle Round Two is pretty much exactly like Battle Round One, but with different contestants.
We have an entire hour to watch four two-minute duets, yet we’re subjected to so much baloney in between it’s almost mind-numbing! If you fast-forwarded through the interviews and behind-the-scenes footage and the feedback and the mumblings of Carson Daly, you would know exactly what happens in this episode in under 10 minutes and not miss a darn thing! There, I said it! Gosh I am really PMS-ing right now. Sorry I swore, but please, people, stop talking and just sing.
Up first in Battle Round Two is Cee Lo’s team. Or at least, that’s how it’s edited. The reality is they filmed this awhile ago and all of the judges have the month of May off so Blake Shelton could shoot some deer and get hitched.
He’s off the market, ladies! (Somewhere, a Southern Belle is crying.)
Remember Tje, the African American kid with white parents? Well, it turns out he’s adopted, so that clears up all of my questions. This could be ratings gold, but unfortunately Tje isn’t going to be given a chance to expand his story. Oh well.
It turns out Tje is paired with “the belter” Nakia, so he doesn’t stand a chance – even if his voice is more suited for the song “Closer.” (No, not the Nine Inch Nails version, but wouldn’t that be interesting?) Tje also makes the same mistake Terralyn did in the last episode – he holds back his true talent until the actual performance. And he states he has an instant connection with Monica, Cee Lo’s “special advisor” – and we all know you don’t mess with Cee Lo’s woman. Tje is lucky Cee Lo didn’t have him killed.
Ummmm. You smell like flowers.
And it’s too bad, because you really want Tje to kick Nakia’s butt. During rehearsal, Nakia offers some suggestions on how to make the song better and he’s shot down. Then Cee Lo tells him he has to make the song his own, and if I could see Nakia’s emotions behind those sunglasses he constantly wears, I would say he’s pretty pissed. Something tells me if Nakia moves on, he’s gonna be the diva of the show.
Watch out, Christina Aguilera, there’s a new Village Person dressed up as the sheriff in town!
Finally, they finish with all the preparations and Carson Daly brings them to into the ring. And yeah, the song is totally a Tje song. And yeah, Nakia sings it like a Blues Brother, which apparently impresses EVERYBODY. All of the coaches egg Cee Lo on to choose Nakia – and Cee Lo, being the follower he is, obliges. Cee Lo’s decision should be influenced by Monica, who actually suggests he choose Tje – and there’s no way Cee Lo is going to keep Tje around to compete for Monica’s love.
But it’s not a total loss for Tje. Adam Levine compliments his hair (I think) and Christina compliments his package. Of course, you can’t exactly sing with your penis, but it’s nice to know something’s working for him.
How could you say no to this face?
Even Cee Lo is sad to see Tje go. He calls after him just like they do in action movies when someone falls down an elevator shaft: “Tje! Noooooooo!!!” Except in this case, Cee Lo is the one who actually pushed Tje to his untimely death. Something tells me that during the last episode we’re going to find out that Cee Lo was the villain all along.
Cee Lo makes the transition to acting.
But in a way, good riddance to Tje. Every time I type his name into my computer, the spell check changes it to “The,” so at least I won’t have that problem anymore.
Oh Blake. Tall, critical, ball-busting Blake. By the time you read this he’ll be married almost a whole week. I’m anxious to see if he returns to “The Voice” as a whole new man. Not necessarily a nicer man, but a whole new one.
So Blake pits Jared against the couple formerly known as Elenowen. And this is where it starts to get tricky. Elenowen, or Josh and Nicole, is the married duo who originally had Blake and Cee Lo fighting over them. But Blake promised to make them stars, so they chose him as their coach. Actually, Josh chose Blake as Nicole stood by him, called him her leader and looked pretty. Something tells me this is not going to turn out well.
And Jared is the aging, sober rocker who was originally passed over in the first round of the blind auditions, only to be picked up by Blake in the second round with no one fighting over him. Plus, Jared has lived a hard life – drugs, alcohol, etc. He’s turned it around, but Middle America tends to empathize more with squeaky clean married couples than recovering addicts. And to top it off, well, I’ll just say it – Jared isn’t as pretty as Elenowen. Hey – those were his words, not mine. And considering these auditions aren’t blind…
One more thing – they both have hardships. Jared has six – count ‘em – six children. Children are expensive. Of course, he could have slapped one on and prevented all this, but… damage done. He needs the money. But not as badly as Elenowen, who live in her parents’ basement. And they have no idea how to get out of that basement if they don’t win this thing. Of course, they could get jobs, but whatever…
Hey guys – just lift your heads up and open your eyes and you should be able to see the exit door. You’ll be out of this basement in no time.
And (I’m not done yet)… there’s two members to Elenowen, and only one Jared. That doesn’t exactly seem fair, but as Jared has already figured out, life’s not fair, is it?
To top it off, they’re singing “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough,” a FOLK SONG that would be a great pick for the FOLK DUO, not a rock star. Sounds like this should be an easy decision, right?
I am so doomed.
Nope. Turns out Elenowen kinda sucks. Even Blake stops them mid-rehearsal to tell them how much they suck. He doesn’t really offer any advice, he just tells them that they suck. And the performance is a shocker. Jared’s voice is like buttah, and he reduces Elenowen to really good backup singers. Unlike last time, Blake chooses the best singer – and that happens to be Jared.
Blake not only banishes Josh and Nicole to a basement apartment with no apparent doors or windows, but he also goes back on his promise to help them become huge stars. Guess the guy just can’t keep his promises. Hear that, Miranda Lambert?
Adam pairs up Javier and Angela to sing “Stand By Me.” We haven’t even gotten into it and it’s become very apparent that Angela should lose by her ridiculous outfit choice alone:
Madonna isn’t one of the judges, honey.
Angela is smarter than she looks. She’s excited to do a duet with such a great singer. On the downside, Angela knows Javier’s one of the best in this competition, so she’s scared out of her mind. At least she’s humble.
Remember what I said just a couple minutes ago about Jared not being the apparent choice because he didn’t make it past the first round and his competitors had judges fighting over them – and how not everything is as it seems, and how when given a second chance you can surprise everyone and succeed? Scratch all that. In this case Angela also was a second round pick, whereas Javier had all four judges fighting over him, so there’s not a chance in hell she’s gonna win this round. Plus if we’re going on sob stories alone, Javier has a couple of mouths to feed. Angela is just another Blake Shelton stalker. Why anyone would stalk Blake Shelton is beyond me, but to each her own, Angela. To each her own.
Since the outcome is obvious, the producers try to throw you off by showing a clip of Adam advising Javier to sing less and scale it back.
How dare you talk to me like that! Don’t you know who I am, Adam Levine of the multi-platinum group Maroon 5?
But that’s about all they do to stir the pot. Poor Angela. Adam doesn’t even really acknowledge her. We don’t even get a glimpse of the dress rehearsal. They cut right to Carson blandly introducing them. Or at least, that’s what I assume happened next. I fell asleep when he started talking.
Just read the words on the teleprompter and everything will turn out ok…
It’s actually a really beautiful duet. Angela is at the top of her game – and she wears a much more modern outfit. They look like they’re having a nice time and their voices compliment each other. Too bad everyone has already made up their minds before the competition and picked Jared to win, which he does.
Don’t let this picture fool you. They really hate each other.
Oh – and Carson makes a joke at the end of the song, you guys! Want to hear what he says? Ok… you won’t believe it… it’s so hilarious… wait for it… he says, “That was so warm and battley, you guys!”
He he. I made a funny.
When Javier wins, he runs backstage into the arms of his beautiful wife and adorable daughter. Somebody’s on a roll. But don’t worry about Angela. Something tells me this won’t be the last we hear of her. I’m sure she’ll end up on the 6:00 news somewhere…
And that’s it. Oh wait – I left out Christina. So she makes Beverly and Justin sing The Who’s “Baba O’Riley.” Bev is stoked, but Justin looks confused. He has never heard of that song. So Christina explains it to him:
Christina: You’re going to be singing Baba O’Riley by The Who.
Justin: The What?
Christina: No, The Who.
Justin: Who’s The Who?
Christina: Don’t you mean what’s The Who?
Christina: The Who’s a band, so technically they’re a what.
Christina: No, the what is The Who is the who is Pete Townshend and Roger Daltrey.
Justin: So who’s on first?
Christina: No one. It’s a duet so no one goes first. You sing it together.
Justin: What you talkin’ about, Willis?
Poor Justin. He’s a high tenor and Bev is a raspy alto who specializes in singing raspy, alto-ish rock songs from the 70s. He looks terrified. It doesn’t help that this is right up Bev’s alley and she looks like she’s going to eat him alive – literally.
And when I’m done with the main course I’m going to have your balls for dessert.
Even Christina looks like she knows it’s hopeless. After she’s done explaining the song, Christina looks at the camera, shrugs and (very unconvincingly) says, “This is going to be a good battle,” to which Justin weakly replies, “Cool.”
And that was my audition for “Burlesque.” Did I nail it?
They rehearse and all I have to say is, poor, poor Justin. Christina talks about how far he’s come but he’s no match for Bev. In fact, he looks like he’s about to sink right through the floor the entire time. But on to the battle round we must go, whether he likes it or not…
Commence. Battle. Round. Now.
Although Justin gives it his all during the performance, he’s screwed. And it doesn’t help that when the camera pans away from them, you can’t tell which singer is the guy and which is the girl. Then he gets a bunch of back-handed compliments from the judges, like “You look like the guy who works at my bank.” As a formality, Christina smiles and nods throughout, but she chooses Bev in the end. Justin was never going to be a rock star anyway – he just doesn’t have the right kind of entourage:
Great. Now who am I gonna get my coke from?
That’s ok. Justin has a back-up plan. He’ll be touring the country performing the stand-up comedy of Jon Lovitz.
“Yeah, that’s the ticket!”
Next week promises to be even tougher decisions and more drama. But don’t believe them; they’ve lied to us before. ‘Til then, my friends.