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SEEING RED Auditions may be blind, but the judges see nothing wrong with a little saucy strategy.
"...that i gotta go with Christina.” Finally! Diva-in-residence gets her star pupil and rightfully so.
“I didn’t think I was gonna get him, to be very honest, she says in a side confessional interview.
Then we cut to lots of product placement -- Kia cars and Starbucks beverages -- and Carson Daly traveling all over, meeting potential Voices, such as what appears to be Kaley Cuoco’s personal assistant. Muy interesante, perhaps for a future episode?
Next up is Nick, 26, who describes his style as a cross between Jessie J and Amy Winehouse. He used to travel for theater performances but stopped when his step-dad left his mom and he had to go back home to help raise his little brother who suffers from seizures. To make ends meet, Nick started bartending and teaches hip hop (including twerking). “I’m here to show America something different,” he says. Nick sings Blu Cantrell’s “Hit ‘Em Up Style (Oops).” He gives it a jazzier jingle, and his raw voice almost sounds like a weaker Adam Levine actually. And Adam is the first to hit the button.
“What’s going on, handsome?” Nick says to Adam.
“Flattery will get you... everywhere,” says Adam, before he applauds Nick’s frenetic dancing. CeeLo interjects with his musical history lesson of the night, on Beyoncé: “She mastered that rapid-fire R&B style.”
But the Nick/Adam rom-com banter continues:
“I’m like the resident white boy that loves the same things that you love,” says Adam.
“I just don’t know if I’m gonna be able to focus because you’re so good-looking,” says Nick. (At least he’s an honest student, I’m looking at you Donna!) And of course he goes with Levine. Backstage he says to his little brother, “And I hit on Adam Levine, like what? That was real?”
Tonight, another theme besides utter lack of judge craziness was that younger contestants did not fare well. A montage of teenage contestants getting the boot was shown along with their criticisms: "You need more experience”; “You sounded like you’re just going through the motions"; "Show a little more range.”
But one youngin’ tried his best to capture their attention. Matthew Brea, 15, of Georgia, dedicated his performance to his deceased younger brother Jonathan, who suffered from seizures. Matthews parents came from Haiti. “This is my one shot. I wanna take it and grab it,” he said. He sang The Jackson 5’s “I Want You Back.” And though as sweet and adorable as he was, little Matthew’s voice did not rouse the judges from their chairs. As touched as I was by his earnestness, I also became a little bored during the performance, my mind wandering off to wonder did CeeLo’s lacy head tattoo hurt? as the camera panned into his newest cranial accessory. CeeLo had his hand cupped on his button the whole time, but did not budge.
When the judges did their collective swivel, they were shocked at the kid staring back at them. “Whoa!” said Blake. “How old are you? Oh my God, you’re like a child prodigy. I thought it was somebody 40 years old singing this song,” said CeeLo. Is that why you didn’t turn around?
“Where did you get that voice from?” asks Adam.
“God,” Matthew replied.
Christina asked him for a hug and CeeLo encouraged him to never give up. The judges were definitely remorseful for letting this one go. So much so that CeeLo went backstage to share his own story of familial loss: “I can relate to your pain.”
NEXT: Pageantry and Platonic Ideal of Voices