The Voice's Final Battle Round: A Noticeable Lack of Montage Magic

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The Voice S03E16: “The Final Battles”

They’re over! They’re FINALLY over. Last night marked the conclusion of The Voice’s Battle Rounds and honestly, it felt a little anticlimactic. Maybe it was the lack of montages?

The final three battles were waged with some surprising and not-so-surprising results. Team Christina kicked things off, pitting New York waitress Adriana Louise against former Disney Channel All-Star Jordan Pruitt on Katy Perry’s “Hot N Cold.” Christina encouraged them to embrace a tougher take on the “silly” tune. I found myself preferring Jordan’s approach to Adriana’s, which was startling and horrifying because she toured with the Jonas Brothers and that hits all sorts of my peeves when it comes to The Voice:

1. She toured with the Jonas Brothers and I knew who she was even before the woe-is-my-career introduction way back at the blind auditions.

2. She toured with the Jonas Brothers.

But hey, fair is fair and I liked her performance better, as did Blake and Adam. Cee Lo couldn’t decide between the two, but Christina went with Adriana because apparently she doesn’t like winning.

Team Blake’s final battle featured country girl Kelly Crapa and punk rocker Michaela Paige singing “I Hate Myself for Loving You,” which Blake picked because he felt that it could work as a country song. Dude, this is why you had such a hard time recruiting non-country singers to your team this season.

Kelly Crapa immediately took on a campaign of country-frying as much of the tune as she possibly could while Michaela kept on with her brand of Hot Topic punk. During the performance, which despite the auditory terror featured in the rehearsal footage was actually quite good, both singers successfully sang their own style. Ultimately, it was Michaela’s superior stage presence that swayed my favor in her direction. She was clearly the dominant force on the stage, to the point that I kind of wanted to lead Crapa away and give her a teddy bear—she TRIED to bring the same fierceness as her counterpart, but I honestly thought that she looked seconds away from bursting into terrified tears the entire time.

Still, Blake wants to win with a country singer. We’ve heard this practically every episode since the beginning of the season. Blake wants to win with a country singer, Kelly Crapa was the country singer between the two, and honestly, while her stage presence seemed so much smaller than Michaela’s during their battle, if featured by herself or paired with a softer partner, Kelly would probably be just fine in the future. I’d make a token grumble about OF COURSE, Blake chose the country singer, but I’d get over it pretty fast because Crapa can actually sing. And then he went with Michaela. What? Really? Awesome!

Blake picked Michaela but encouraged Christina to use her last steal to snatch up the perfectly capable Kelly. Christina said no because she’s building a POP team. Ugh. Please stop with the musical-style pissing match. It’s called THE VOICE, not THE GENRE. This obnoxious, excessive concern with the type of music a contestant sings rather than how well the contestant sings does more to make me root for the other judges than anything else Blake or Christina could do. And no, it’s not because I hate country or pop. They certainly aren’t my favorite genres, but I’d be lying if I claimed that there aren't any country or pop songs (that I thoroughly enjoy, some of which are even by Blake and Christina themselves) on my decrepit old iPod. I just feel like it misses the entire point of the show, the thing that supposedly makes The Voice so superior to those "other" talent shows, when the judges pigeonhole themselves and their talent into rigid identities.

Christina ultimately spent her last steal on former Lady Gaga backup dancer Chevonne, who faced Avery Wilson on Team Cee Lo’s cover of “Titanium.” Wilson easily blew Chevonne away. That’s not to say that she was horrible because she wasn’t, but Avery was the clear winner in their battle. He made those soaring high notes look easy to hit, whereas Chevonne seemed to struggle a little more.

Christina snatched her up, citing her diva qualities, and I couldn’t help but wonder what a battle between Chevonne and Kelly Crapa would have looked like. Crapa had the same sort of smoothness in her voice that made me prefer Avery to Chevonne and despite her protestations, she was more than capable of carrying a pop tune. I mean, she auditioned with a Taylor Swift song and I don’t know about your neck of the woods, but when it comes to my local stations, I hear Swift a lot more often on the pop frequencies than on the country ones. However, when faced with an opportunity to branch out musically, Crapa shied away from the opportunity and wasn’t encouraged to branch out at all. Because, you know, she was on “The Country Team.” She didn’t need to show her versatility... until it would have really helped to have shown some versatility. However, it would have benefitted both her AND Christina if Christina had been passing judgement on her voice and not her twang.

Oh well, congrats anyway, Chevonne!


STANDINGS

Sticking Around:

Adriana Louise (Team Christina)
Michaela Paige (Team Blake)
Avery Wilson (Team Cee Lo)

Going Home:

Jordan Pruitt (Team Christina)
Kelly Crapa (Team Blake)

Steals:

Chevonne (Team Cee Lo to Team Christina)


QUESTIONS!

1. Are you satisfied with this week's results?

2. Are you ready for the Knockout rounds?

3. Don’t you think the Knockout Rounds sound EXACTLY like the Battle Rounds?

4. Wouldn’t it be nice to get to the live performances already?

5. Aren’t the teams just too damn big?

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