With Super Bowl Sunday’s one-day teaser behind us—and scoring an absolutely mind-boggling 37.6 million viewers, the highest rating for a non-sports program in six years—we’re into our regularly scheduled Voice programming, with a two-hour block of blind auditions last night. There were successes, there were failures, and all in all, we’d say about ten things happened. In case you missed the episode—and if last night’s ratings were any indication, you were one of maybe ten people in your entire home state that did—here’s the roughly-chronological rundown:
1. The coaches jammed out some Prince songs. Highlights: Adam Levine’s “You have no idea how well this works on the sorority girls” falsetto on “I Wanna Be Your Lover,” Blake Shelton’s gruff, rocked-out rendition of “Kiss,” Christina Aguilera’s backing vocals on everything, and Cee Lo Green’s sequined red pantsuit thing. Seriously, can we get a picture of that thing?
There we go.
2. We have our first Will They or Won’t They couple of the season. Haley and Leland of Nashville country-rock duo The Line swear that despite their incredible on-stage chemistry—and despite the fact that Leland apparently first met Haley by trying to pick her up with a free shot of Jack—the couple swear they’re not actually a couple. The coaches, naturally, assumed otherwise. “You guys love each other, obviously…are you guys a couple?” asked Cee Lo. “No!” insisted Leland. “Not yet,” qualified Adam. Stay tuned.
3. Cee Lo has his first stan of the season. 29-year-old Jamar Rogers—who rivals Sunday night‘s Jesse Campbell as an H.I.V.-positive recovering meth addict for Best Backstory of the Season thusfar—called Cee Lo his personal idol before his performance, and boy howdy, he wasn’t kidding. Rogers’ version of “Seven Nation Army” was so obviously reminiscent of the Lady Killer, that once Cee Lo pressed his button, none of the other judges even bothered. “I’m not on the brand new like Gnarls Barkley wave,” Jamar gushed to his new choice after being chosen. “I loved you since Goodie Mob, I loved you since the Perfect Imperfections, I loved you since Cee Lo Green & the Soul Machine.” All good, but if Jamar shaves his head, gains 50 pounds and starts wearing dark sunglasses and a mumu, look out.
4. The Return of the White Cat.
5. Cee Lo missed out on a hot chick. 28-year-old Pamela Rose failed to impress the coaches with her pitchy (no Idol) rendition of Kelly Clarkson’s “Already Gone”—at least until they turned around. “Cee Lo’s killing himself right now,” commented Adam upon seeing what a comely young lass they had missed out on. “Definitely,” agreed Cee Lo, shaking his head. “I’m very disappointed.” Nonetheless, it was too late: The coaches’ decision had been made. “You’re beautiful, obviously, so…congrats on that,” comforted Adam, again rueful about the show’s title.
6. Adam really, really liked another contestant. 50-year-old Kim Yarbrough (nope, not one of Yarbrough & Peoples, I checked) had herself a quick fan in Adam Levine, who was quickly swayed by her rendition of Rufus’ “Tell Me Something Good,” getting out of his seat to cheer her on by performance’s end. “What is your name, darling?” he asked her. “No it’s not,” he responded upon hearing her answer. “Your name is Chaka Khan, baby!” Well, if she knew it was gonna be at trick question…
7. Christina looooooovvved doing the buzzer-fakeout thing. Seemingly with every contestant that she didn’t actually end up choosing, Christina levitated her hand over her button, always intimating like she was considering pressing it, then invariably failing to do so. It’s like when you were young and your brother would offer you a candy bar or something, and each time it looked like he was going to hand it to you, he yanked it away, until eventually you tackled him, strangled him to death and sat over his dead body, savoring that Kit Kat while your mother cried in the background. Good thing none of the contestants can see Xtina’s teasing, then.
8. Christina missed out on a hot dude. Dez Duron, All-American quarterback (setting the Louisiana record for most TDs in a season!) turned pop singer, did not impress any of the coaches with his lukewarm rendition of Backstreet Boys’ “I Want It That Way”—again, until they turned around. “Now we all hate each other for not pressing our buttons…because how adorable are you?” remarked Christina upon being confronted with Dez’s Darren Criss-like good looks. “Can we go back around? Can we start over?” (Nope.)
9. A quirky white chick and a black R&B back-up singer switched songs. Lindsey Pavao, a 22-year-old Fiona Apple disciple from Sacramento, chose Trey Songz’ “Say Aah” for her audition song, while Jermaine Paul, a 33-year-old back-up singer for Alicia Keys, sang Avril Lavigne’s “Complicated.” Amazingly, both performers were awesome, and both wowed the judges with their unlikely choices of covers. “It took me a minute to catch what record that was,” an impressed Cee Lo remarked about Pavao’s Trey Songz rendition. “It’s probably the coolest thing that’s happened on this season thusfar.” Might have to agree with you on that one, Cee.
10. We Have Adele. It’s amazing that it took this long, but the second episode of The Voice ended with 23-year-old L.A. local Angel Taylor having a go at “Someone Like You,” marking the first official appearance of Adele’s music in this season’s auditions. Angel did the UK diva proud, getting swivels from three of the coaches, and making Cee Lo feel “warm.” (Probably a good thing, almost definitely a creepy thing.) We’re sure it’s not the last time we’ll be hearing from Ms. Adkins on this season—we just hope the contestants switch up the song choices occasionally.