‘The Voice’ Season 5 Finals: There Will Be An Answer
They don't call it "The Voice" for nothin'. It was a big ole battle of the multi-octave divas on Monday's final "Voice" Season 5 showdown, as the remarkable Tessanne Chin took on Whitney Houston's near-untouchable "I Have Nothing," and then pint-sized powerhouse Jacquie Lee belted Jennifer Holliday's gauntlet-throwing Dreamgirls epic "And I Am Telling You." Even with the volume turned down, this was one very loud episode.
But where did that leave the quiet man of Season 5, scrappy singer-songwriter Will Champlin, who sang in between these two mighty-lung'd ladies? Did he get lost in the shuffle? Or is it possible that Tessanne and Jacquie could cancel each other out, thus leaving an opening for the nerdy, likable Will to pull off one of the biggest underdog upsets in singing-show history on Tuesday's grand finale?
Let's recap all of the performances and assess...
Tessanne Chin (Team Adam) – For their first numbers, each of the contestants revisited their Blind Audition songs, which I thought was a bit of a cop-out on the show's part. I would have preferred to hear new tunes. But hey, if I had to hear a "Voice" oldie, at least it was a goodie, because Tessanne's cover of Pink's "Try" was just about as fantastic as I remember it being the first time around. If anything, she rocked a little harder this time, more confident than ever after coming off of such a strong Season 5 run. Her presence, as she worked the stage in an elegant jumpsuit and an architectural updo, was the presence of a true star. A rock star. "Everything you do just draws me in," gushed Tessanne's proud coach, Adam Levine. "I've enjoyed the process of working with you so much…[Your talent is] exceedingly rare. I've never seen anything like it in my life."
Will Champlin (Team Adam) – I don't recall being all that impressed by Will's first audition, mainly because his song choice, Gavin DeGraw's "Not Over You," was so ho-hum. I really would have rather seen him sing something else tonight. But that being said, this was a marked improvement over his Blind Auditions version. Before, he was scruffy and a bit geeky; now, he'd somehow morphed into an Adam Levine mini-me, with a salon haircut, a GQ suit, lots of swagger, and maybe even a few moves like Jagger. But he's still a lovable dork at heart; there's just something endearing about the guy, and when I see him onstage, I always root for him. "There isn't anyone who works harder," said Adam. "I have profound respect for you. You have really overcome the biggest hurdles in this competition." Then Christina Aguilera, the only other coach still in this season's running, actually said Will was in the "bottom three" instead of the "top three." An innocent flub, a Freudian slip, or just straight-up shade? With Xtina, sometimes it's tough to tell.