Warning: This article contains spoilers from Thursday's episode of The Masked Singer.
It was ladies' night on the season 8 semifinals of The Masked Singer on Thursday.
For the first time in the show's history, only women competed in the penultimate episode, which saw Snowstorm, Harp, and the Lambs singing for a chance to win the Golden Mask Trophy. Thanksgiving spirit abounded, with the panelists and contestants revealing things that they were grateful for. And, because this is The Masked Singer, a grown adult dressed as a gobbling turkey presented clues throughout.
After performing their respective songs, the episode featured a small twist: For the first time this season, there wouldn't be two separate votes, but just one, and therefore, all three singers had to compete in one epic Battle Royale. They each had to tackle Kelly Clarkson's banger, "Since U Been Gone."
Unfortunately for Snowstorm, the audience vote did not go in her favor, and she was forced to unmask, meaning we will see Lambs and Harp in next week's two-hour finale. Before that, though, Snowstorm's true identity had to be revealed, and unlike Wednesday's semifinals episode, which did not go well for the panelists, at least one person did guess correctly this time around, and the guesses overall were much closer. Everyone zeroed in on the fact Snowstorm was likely a comedian, with Robin Thicke guessing Whitney Cummings, Nicole Scherzinger going with Iliza Shlesinger, and Ken Jeong opting for Kristen Wiig. In the end, it was Jenny McCarthy-Wahlberg's guess of TV host and comedian Nikki Glaser that was a winning pick.
Below, EW catches up with Glaser to get her to spill the beans on her plans for a career in music, why she thinks her dear friend, the late Bob Saget, is the reason she did the show, how The Masked Singer changed her life, and more.
Michael Becker/Fox Snowstorm performing on season 8 of 'The Masked Singer'
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: First of all, oh my God, you can sing!
NIKKI GLASER: That's so nice. It's pretty wild to speak on this, because it hasn't been revealed in the timeline that I'm living in right now, as opposed to when this will come out. It's so weird to be on the show, because you don't get any accolades for what you do from your friends and family, aside from the people that you let in on the secret. But most people in my life don't know. So usually when you do something extraordinary, or just extraordinary for me as a comedian to sing, you get so much feedback and texts and tweets, but because no one knows it's me — people think it's me, but no one really knows — it'd be eerie the next day, [because my] phone's not blowing up, and no one's talking to me. I can't have like a viewing party. I didn't hear a lot of it.
Ever since I became someone that people have opinions about, like mildly famous enough for people to care, I just avoid comments, I avoid tweets, I avoid Instagram, I avoid Facebook, I avoid it, especially YouTube. And so I don't read anything about myself. And I thought, "Oh my God, this is the first time that I can read about myself, because no one knows it's me." You know, if they say anything mean about Snowstorm, they don't know it's me, so it's not going to be laced with this idea of, "Oh, we just don't like her, she's a dirty comedian," because some people just have that bias already. But it was so funny, because I'd go look at the tweets, and already you can find people just not liking this character that they don't even know who it is. So you can just see people are still mean online, but anyone who suspects it's me has definitely been kind of taunting me online. And I have to just kind of ignore it. People being like, "We know it's you." I have a lot of fans just DMing me being like, "Your voice is amazing. Who knew you could sing like that?" And that's nice to hear, but I can't say thank you to anyone. I'm just like, "Oh, I'll check it out. Someone sounds like me, that's cool." It's so hard.
One of the fun parts of the show, to me, is when people come on that are not known for singing and they're actually pretty good.
When I did Dancing With the Stars, I was not a good dancer, I was actually the opposite of one. And it's nice to do something that's out of my wheelhouse, but that I'm actually adept at and like can kind of impress some people with. And it's nice, because as a comedian, the bar is so low. So if I'm at all kind of good it's surprising to people. But singing has always been what I wanted to do in my life and career ever since I was probably in middle school and high school. I've always loved music and wanted to be a singer-songwriter. But I took voice lessons in high school, and I had a really mean voice teacher who discouraged me and told my mom it was a waste of money for my lessons, because I didn't have quote-unquote "it." And so I just let that dream die right in that moment, because you hear from your voice teacher who you've spent hours with, and she says you don't have it, and you just feel like she's the final say in the St. Louis singing community. So that's what kind of led me to comedy a couple years later, because it was like, "Okay, well, I can't do this one thing I'm really passionate about, what else can I find in entertainment where I can be on a stage and I can have people's attention, where I can share my feelings and my thoughts?"
And then when The Masked Singer came up, I couldn't have said yes fast enough. I was always wanting to go on it and then through the process, it was just great to work with a singing coach again and to treat my voice like a musical instrument. I think a lot of times people think the voice you have is just, you either have it or you don't. And it really is something that you can learn to use and to perfect, and since then I've really become obsessed with singing. And it's my new passion. It's something I want to pursue beyond The Masked Singer. So this was just the jumpstart of like, "Oh, I really love singing as a means of performing, more so I think than comedy at times." And so now I'm singing on my standup tour, I'm singing every day, I'm singing the national anthem at the Thanksgiving Day Parade in St. Louis on Thursday. And they don't even know I'm on The Masked Singer you know? People are starting to see that this is something I want to do. So it's very exciting.
So it's safe to say you'd like to record an album?
Yes. I mean, I look at singing as something I just started. And I wasn't ready to be a viable artist in comedy until I was like seven years in. So I'm giving myself like four years to really work on it and perfect it because I want to be taken seriously. And I don't want to just do it and have people be interested because oh, there's this gimmick of a comedian singing — I really want it to be good on its own. So I may release music under a different name, just so it doesn't get too much attention. I really want to do it, and be good at it because I'm talented outside of the fact that I'm already an established person, you know? Actually, my voice coach, Amy Chapman, who I worked with on the show and who I am still working with today, she told me, "It sounds like there's something on your vocal cords. You're not able to do what you should be able to do with your voice." And so I went to a vocal cord doctor during the show, and she looked at my throat and said, "You should have surgery. There's a lot of trauma on your cords." I have a lot of polyps and damage and trauma, almost calluses, from me screaming in loud bars over the years, just the way I use my voice on stage doing impressions, kind of misusing my voice. And so I think like two weeks after I wrapped on The Masked Singer and was eliminated, I had vocal cord surgery. And then I had three weeks of silence to recover from that. And I would not have ever gotten the surgery had it not been for Masked Singer, and now I can sing — I wish I could do The Masked Singer again because my voice is so much better now. I was very limited in what I could do with it at the time because it was so damaged. And now I've gotten all that damage removed. I had to take all those songs down so many octaves because my voice just couldn't hit those notes. And now I have no problem hitting those notes. I really give credit to The Masked Singer for giving me the second chance at a possible other career.
You mentioned Bob Saget, a.k.a. season 4's Squiggly Monster, talked to you about his time on the show. What all did he tell you about it?
Oh, my God. He loved the show so much. So the last time I saw Bob was in Milwaukee in, I want to say, October of 2021. And we were both there doing different gigs. We met up after the show to have dinner with a bunch of people. It was my team and his team and his in-laws were there. And it was probably 11 people at this table. It was like, you know, one o'clock in the morning at this hotel restaurant, and we're all just laughing, having a good time. And Bob is pulling up clips of him on The Masked Singer on his phone and making us all be quiet so we can listen to him. And he was so proud of himself. At one point I was talking about something. And he was like, "Nikki, you're talking over me, and the best note I hit!" He rewound it. It was just so cute, how excited he was about his performance. And it made me realize how rewarding that show is. For people, especially like Bob Saget, who had been in the business for so long — what gets anyone excited anymore, once you've met every famous person, once you've done every type of media that you could do? And it was so cute to see his enthusiasm, almost like it was his first time on stage, like, "Watch my stand up set!" It was so adorable, and it was then that I was like, "Bob, I want to do The Masked Singer so bad." And he was like, "I'll see if I can put a word in." He really, I think, made some calls on my behalf to plant that maybe in the Fox space of, "Nikki would like to do the show." So I think he had something to do with me being on the show in the end. He was just such a champion of doing things, of having fun with what you do, and just always being so present. But he was just so excited about that show. He just loved it.
Frazer Harrison/Getty Nikki Glaser
And how was your experience?
I totally understood how he felt when I got on the show. I was so depressed on the day that I thought I was going home. I mean, every elimination, I would just get so nervous, because I just wanted to keep singing. I think Bob, like me, he's a musician and obviously a really good singer. And he had incorporated music into his comedy acts for years, I think since the beginning. And I think comedians want to be musicians and rock stars and rock stars want to be comedians. So there's always this desire to be something that you're not. And, ultimately, he really was [both], and I think I could be, too, and it was just so fun to see his enthusiasm for it. Honestly, The Masked Singer was my favorite show I've done ever, maybe, it was the most fun I've had. I made such great friendships. And it really is a show that, you can't tell anyone you're on it right? So you become really close with the people you are in it with, the vocal coach, the producers, but not the other contestants. Because that's the other thing, I could have been in a trailer next to Taylor Swift, who is like my favorite person in the world, and you could be next to someone who is your hero, and you have no idea, because you are cloaked in obscurity the entire time. So it's an interesting show that isolates you and makes you just obsessed with the world that you're living in. I was so sad to leave, I got really invested in it. But I love that show so much. It's really changed my life for sure. The vocal cord surgery I had was extremely invasive, and I had to cancel a tour to have it done, but I wouldn't have ever even known to do it if I didn't go on that show and realize, "Oh my god, this is really what I want to do, and I want to do everything I can so I can do this the best that I can." I loved my time on it.
And what can you tell us about FBOY Island season 3? Has it been renewed or do you have any intel on that?
No information yet. It was a huge success; season 2 more than season 1. And we can't wait to make another, but we have no word yet. But I'm really confident that there will be more. I've never been so sure of anything in my life when it comes to a show being picked up again. And I've had many of my TV shows canceled and not return, but I have no worries that this one will either be back on HBO or find a place somewhere else, because the demand is there for it. It's one of the greatest shows I've ever had the opportunity to have a hand in making. I want it back, too, so I can watch it. It was like my favorite show to watch. And I don't usually watch my own shows. So yeah, I believe it will be back, but no final word yet.
The Masked Singer season 8 finale airs Wednesday, Nov. 30 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on Fox.
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