First of all, right off the bat, I want to wholeheartedly thank NBC, Carson Daly, and Mark Burnett Productions for revealing, right off the bat on Tuesday's "Voice" results show, that my Team Usher girl Michelle Chamuel made it to next week's top three finale. They could have forced me to sweat it out until the 59th minute of the hour-long episode, but since Michelle was the very first contestant called to safety by Carson, I was able to just exhale, kick back, and enjoy the rest of the show, including great performances by Season 3's Terry McDermott and Nicholas David, and Michelle herself rocking out with Fall Out Boy.
So thanks, "The Voice"!
I do have to say, I was a little surprised (if still thrilled) by Tuesday's anti-climactic reveal order. Let's face it, everyone already knew that Team Blake's Swon Brothers and Danielle Bradbery would make the top three. (And they did — no shockers or upsets there.) A quick glance at Tuesday morning's iTunes top 10 chart, which was dominated by two songs apiece from Danielle and Swons, made that abundantly obvious. So the only suspense of the entire evening centered on whether that third finale slot would go to Michelle, who missed making the iTunes top 10 but had two songs chart at numbers 12 and 23, or Team Adam's Amber Carrington, who squeaked into the top 10 (at number 9), but was way down at number 83 with her other song.
Would Amber's "iTunes bonus" (quick lingo explanation: If a contestant makes the top 10 chart, his/her downloads are multiplied times 10 in the votes) give her the edge? Or would Michelle's diehard fanbase rock the vote in other ways? It turned out to be the latter case, happily. And this actually bodes very well for Michelle's chances going into next week's finale.
So let's take a look at the possibilities for next week's fun finale, shall we? Adam Levine, who once seemed like THE coach to beat before he lost Judith Hill and Sarah Simmons two weeks ago, is totally out of the running now that Amber is gone — and while it's sad to see such a talented girl not make it to the end, I do have to say, an all-country finale would have been extremely boring. Instead, we're going to have a nice bit of variety next week, even if the odds of coach Blake Shelton racking up a third consecutive victory still seem pretty good.
The Swon Brothers are the first duo in "Voice" history to make it to a finale. Danielle, at age 16, is the youngest "Voice" contestant to ever make it to a finale, and she's the total opposite of the seasoned pros (i.e., the contestants who've had multiple major-label record deals and/or stints on other talent shows) who tend to go far on "The Voice." And Michelle is the only contestant represented by a rookie coach (now that Shakira has lost her last contestant, Sasha Allen), as well as the only one representing electro, pop, and rock. Michelle is also the maverick who really represents what "The Voice" is supposed to be all about, so she should make the finale a lot more interesting than it could have been.
Which of these three will win? Lovable all-American girl Danielle still seems like the frontrunner, but Michelle's triumph this week proved that anything is possible on "The Voice." So I really think it will all come down to song selection...which, of course, affects iTunes sales.
I can't wait to see what happens, so come back Monday, watch the show, and watch this space.