The Masked Singer has returned to scramble our cerebellums once again — perhaps even more so, because this season’s clues are tougher than ever. But one mystery contestant who got scrambled early on was the Egg, a.k.a. Johnny Weir. The egg cracked under the pressure, so to speak, and literally had (rhinestone-studded) egg on his face, when Weir became the first celebrity to be voted off the show on Wednesday’s Season 2 premiere.
Weir gave two vivacious performances that went over easy — his sassy Blondie cover was no yolk! — but his chances were quickly fried when he went up against the more vocally soaring Butterfly and the scary-good comic timing of the Skeleton. Well, at least the Egg won’t have to be walking on eggshells trying to keep his identity a secret.
The other contestant to suffer a meltdown on night one was the Ice Cream, a.k.a superstar gamer Tyler "Ninja" Blevins. (The Masked Singer judges — Robin Thicke, Jenny McCarthy Wahlberg, Ken Jeong, and Nicole Scherzinger — put the show on an extreme crash diet this week, cutting out the two edible-themed contestants in one go. Food fight!) The Ice Cream’s “Old Town Road” cover was cool, and he really served it during his sweet second performance of Devo’s “Whip It,” but he got iced out when he went up against the Tree’s Christmas sparkle and the Ladybug’s spotless performance. Oh well — at least the Egg and Ice Cream (or Egg Cream, if you’re into Bennifer-style name mashups) went out with perma-smiles on their polymer faces.
OK, OK, apologies for all the rampant pun abuse. Obviously a show that spectacularly opens with Nick Cannon shouting, “Time to get weird!” as he emerges from the mouth of a wall-sized Mr. Roboto/Hanacare mask while dressed like Morris Day attending a masquerade ball isn’t something to be taken too seriously. That being said, producers are not playing this season. Having realized that most of the TV-viewing public has access to Google and Wikipedia, they’ve made America’s most bonkers new guessing game much more challenging, with tighter “military-grade” security and vaguer clue packages. Last season, I had already won the Yahoo office pool by week three, guessing every contestant correctly… but Season 2 may be my Waterloo.
While I did figure out that the Egg was Weir from a snow-globe clue; lines about “going for the gold,” being “egg-stra,” and “enjoying a good sparkle”; and the fact that his first performance was Lady Gaga’s “Just Dance” (Weir has skated to multiple Gaga hits in the past), the Ice Cream much a much colder case.
But while there’s even more this Masked Singer season to boggle the brain, there is also much, much more to dazzle the eyes. After being totally robbed at this month’s Creative Arts Emmy in the Outstanding Costuming category (the one time in my life when I actually rooted against RuPaul’s Drag Race, which won instead), the show is back with custom costumes that make last year’s outfits look like something off the Nov. 1 clearance rack at the Spirit of Halloween superstore. While eight more costumes will be unveiled next week on part two of the season premiere, I think The Masked Singer has already clinched the 2020 Emmy thanks the Aeon Flux styling of the Butterfly, the Tim Burton-does-Vegas razzle-dazzle of the Skeleton, and the magnificent Cousin It-like pile of Lisa Frank rainbow tinsel that is the Tree. (I would totally wear that Tree outfit to all my holiday parties this year, by the way.)