My goodness, how the time has flewn! It seems like only yesterday we were watching Christina, Blake, Cee Lo, and Adam press those comically big red buttons to make their comically big red Star Trek chairs turn around for the very first time. But somehow, ten weeks have passed since The Voice premiered -- and just a few hours from now, we'll learn who has won the first season of The Most Exciting Singing Competition On TV.™ What's more, in what may be a reality TV first, I think the vast majority of Voice viewers would agree that they'll be pretty happy no matter who gets the title. Dia, Beverly, Javier, and Vicci are all both talented and deserving; it seems likely that all four of them will come out of this show with record deals. No matter what happens, then, tomorrow's finale should be satisfying.
Before we can speculate about the results, of course, we have to talk about everyone's final performances. In tonight's episode, each contestant sang both an original song -- written, alas, by third-party songwriters rather than the show's mentors or contestants -- and a duet with his or her coach. Only iTunes sales of the original song, though, will count toward a vocalist's vote total... which is good news for the two contestants whose originals worked, and bad news for the two contestants who shined in their duets but didn't make a great impression with their originals. But which of the finalists fall into which camp? Let's find out together!
Our two-hour odyssey began with a performance by the coaches that was, according to Carson, thrown together "just a few hours" before taping. After the host noted that Xtina and co. wanted to acknowledge the stress their contestants were under and a familiar riff began to play, we all knew what was coming: a cover of "Ice, Ice, Baby." Or, you know, Queen and David Bowie's "Under Pressure." It's actually a good thing C-town warned us this song was a last-minute addition to tonight's lineup, because man, the number was... not good. Blame a combination of more crappy sound mixing (for the first time ever on this show, the backing band was actually too quiet), tempo problems, and seeming confusion over who was supposed to be singing when.
Thankfully, the memory of that faulty "Pressure" was wiped away when the finalists emerged. Everyone was clad in black and white -- everyone, that is, except Dia, who chose to stand out in a floor-length red dress. Foreshadowing? There was banter; there was Carson reminding us that this wasn't his first time at the rodeo ("It's so loud in here. It's like TRL 10 years ago," he quipped. Who else would watch a show in which Carson and Christina just reminisced about the golden age of TRL?); there was, mercifully, one of our final trips to the V Room. That place must have "Abandon All Hope, Ye Who Enter Here" emblazoned above its gates. Alison Haislip seemed to realize that her Fame Timer was rapidly approaching 14:59, so she tried to compensate by being even more irritating than usual.
NEXT: And then the show actually started