’Twas the week before the Masked Singer finale, and five creatures were stirring — not a mouse, but a Fox, Rottweiler, Leopard, Flamingo, and, um, Thingamajig — on a Christmas-themed semifinals episode that totally seemed like it took place on the Island of Misfit Toys. Yes, forget about visions of sugarplums dancing in my head. Wednesday’s visions — of dancing, cosplaying mystery celebrities — were bonkers enough to make me feel like my egg nog had been spiked with peyote. The only thing missing was Christmassy contestant the Tree (a.k.a. Ana Gasteyer), who, ironically, had gone home the night before.
But on Wednesday, the reindeer games came to an end for not one but two contestants. And in a true Christmas miracle, clueless judge Ken Jeong actually guessed the identity of the first castoff, the Thingamajig, correctly. No, it wasn’t Björk. It was basketball player Victor Oladipo. And it looks like Victor and another judge — his crush, Nicole Scherzinger — will continue their Hallmark Christmas movie-worthy showmance offscreen, because he said he’d love to take her on a date. I can’t wait till these two get married in a giant Masked Singer theme wedding, complete with bridesmaids in Poodle dresses and groomsmen in Skeleton tuxedos.
The second celeb to go was Seal. No, not a B-list celebrity dressed like a seal, but actual A-list ’90s pop/rock/soul star Seal, all gussied up as the fancypants Leopard. Well, Seal did once say we’re never gonna survive unless we get a little crazy… and what’s crazier than competing on The Masked Singer? Host Nick Cannon said the usually stoic and serious singer gave The Masked Singer “credibility” (what… and Gladys Knight and Patti LaBelle didn’t???). But Seal said he signed up just to give his “cubs” a laugh, because his four children are big fans of the show. And in a way, the show gave Seal cred, too.
Seal was certainly the coolest contestant this season, always willing to laugh along, and even laugh at himself. More than any other celebrity of both seasons, he really embraced the silliness and ridiculousness and camp of it all, and he always seemed like he was having a blast. He wasn’t the best vocalist of Season 2 — that would be three listed below, who are now moving on to next week’s grand finale — but he was always the consummate entertainer, and I am going to miss him.
But it’s still a wonderful life... because have one more episode left this season! Who’s going to win the Golden Mask next week? Check out the three finalists below and make your final guesses and predictions.
The Fox, “This Christmas”
A friend of Season 1’s Joey “The Rabbit” Fatone, the Fox loves the anonymity that this show had given him, something he hasn’t been able to experience for 20 years. And with a voice like his, he should be famous for his stellar vocals.
Judges’ guesses: Jamie Foxx, Wayne Brady, Tyrese, or another member of ‘NSYNC.
My guesses: All of the clues this season add up to Foxx, but the voice is pure Brady.
The Rottweiler, “Mr. Brightside”
I don’t know why the Rottweiler did this song, when the Killers literally have recorded literally 10 Christmas tunes that he could have gone with instead. But I suppose “Don’t Shoot Me, Santa” wouldn’t have been such a crowd-pleaser. Regardless, the Rottweiler’s passionate performance was cause for celebration. This was fantastic.
Judges’ guesses: James Franco, Journey’s Arnel Pineda, Darren Criss.
My guess: It’s Chris Daughtry; of that, I am certain. If this week’s clues about family and art weren’t already tipoffs, a reference to “Cadence” — the name of one of Chris’s pre-American Idol rock bands — confirmed it. So finally, Chris Daughtry has made it to a singing-show finale! And I predict he is going to actually win. He’s never pitchy, dawg.
The Flamingo, “Hallelujah”
In case you thought you’d seen every possible type of reality-show rendition of this over-covered Leonard Cohen staple, now you’ve seen it belted by a giant pink bird that is most likely a Cheetah Girl in disguise. But hey, this version was pretty solid. It was at least as good as Lee DeWyze’s or Jason Castro’s!
Judges’ guesses: Adrienne Bailon, Jessica Simpson.
My guess: It’s Adrienne, for sure. Clues about “Israel” (the name of Adrienne’s husband) and getting her start in a church choir made this one as obvious as the beak on this contestant’s face.
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