TEAM ADAM: Melanie Martinez
Poor Melanie. No one told her that you can't sing Gnarls Barkley's "Crazy" when you don't sound crazy at all. First of all, this smash has been covered by so many people (including Adam Levine!) it's hard to make it unique anymore. And all of Melanie's attempts to make it quirky—playing the world's tiniest piano with one hand, dying half of her hair blue, performing amidst headless department store mannequins with electric guitars, sighing the lyrics like she's one Quaalude away from hibernating for the winter—just make it feel more painfully conventional. There's not nearly enough intensity here. The judges are generous. ("The props are great!" says Christina. "You and Adam have such great taste in music!" insists Cee Lo.) But even those headless mannequins are ashamed to play guitar for this girl.
Elsewhere, when Adam picks Lenka's "The Show," it's even more cloying. How condescending is it for him to get a 17-year-old high school student to sing,"I'm just a little girl lost in the moment"? That doesn't show a lot of confidence in his teammate. And don't get me started on the set design, which was like the New Girl intro gone terribly, horribly, kitten-adorably twee. The little cut-out-paper car was bad enough, but when I saw some poor actor pretending to row a paper boat through the ocean, while life-size paper dolphins jumped around him, I just feel embarrassed for everyone involved. Even Blake is surprised. "You're definitely a darker artist, and you're there, holding balloons?" he asks, puzzled. But who cares about the balloons? Tonight, I'll be rowing a paper boat away from the devil in my dreams.
I'll be shocked if Melanie doesn't get kicked off soon. As for tonight's winners? I love Trevin on "And I Am Telling You I'm Not Going," Terry on "I Wanna Know What Love Is," Amanda on "Here I Go Again," and, of course, Nicholas on "Somewhere Over the Rainbow." Tell me your own picks in the comments. And remember: if those paper dolphins come to kill you in your sleep tonight, just take some oil of oregano and call me in the morning.