I LOVE The Voice! And if you would’ve asked me a couple of years ago, I don’t think I would’ve said the same thing. I didn’t really think anything of this show until last season when my girlfriend convinced me to watch it. Despite what some might think of it, maybe writing it off as just another lame competition show, it’s not. The Voice is much better than all the others. I’ll explain why:
- It’s called The Voice because that’s what they focus on, the voice. It’s not about image, it’s about how well you can actually sing. The show starts off with a few weeks of what are called “Blind Auditions,” where the show hopefuls will perform onstage while the judges sit in their chairs with their backs turned, unable to see each singer. The singer has an allotted amount of time to sing a song of their choosing and convince the judges to turn around. If the judges like what they hear, they press a big red button and their chair turns around.
- Once a judge presses their button, they are able to see the performer. Judges who don’t press their button will turn around once the performance is done. The judge or judges who pressed their button(s) will then praise the singer for what they liked about their singing ability.
- It is then up to the singer to decide which judge they want to go with during the “Battle Rounds.” (I’ll explain those in a bit) If only one judge picked them, they are defaulted to that judge. But most of the time, there are multiple judges.
- Now if no judge presses their button, the singer is of course not selected. But unlike The X-Factor and American Idol, the performers aren’t beaten down with comments like “You were completely dreadful” and “You suck,” they’re actually given constructive criticism to use towards bettering their ability. Yes, they might leave saddened because they weren’t picked, but they’re also more motivated to become a better singer thanks to the judges’ advice.
- Each judge has a team and once each team has twelve members, they move on to the “Battle Rounds.” During this time, the judges become coaches as well and teach the singers how to become even better performers. The judges/coaches will then have two of their team members vocally battle against each other by singing the same song together, then the coach chooses which team member to advance to the final round. Eventually, through multiple battles and the judges and viewers voting (Yes, viewers get a say in this show), the performers are eliminated down to “the final six.”
- The singers compete again, eventually becoming “the final four,” one singer for each team. Once they get to the final four, they will perform for one last time and it becomes solely up to the public to decide who wins the competition. The winner is then given a record deal with Universal Music.
The “Battle Rounds” are in interesting take and typically fun to watch. That’s when the really good singers generally shine through.
The best part about this show are the judges. You don’t have some smarmy British douchebag, with no musical talent at all, telling contestants they suck. There’s no Randy Jackson saying “Yo dawg, that wasn’t good.” No Britney Spears or Demi Lovato. You have judges on this show with actual talent, each from a popular genre, offering sage advice and wisdom with a little bit of humor. For rock, they have Adam Levine (Maroon Five). For pop, there’s Christina Aguilera. For rap/hip-hop/R&B, there’s Cee-Lo Green (Goodie Mob/Gnarls Barkley). And for country, they have Blake Shelton. All highly acclaimed, highly accredited artists; not producers or record executives or talentless, former Disney Channel stars. Unlike with other shows where the judges just seem to be there for the paycheck, these judges are here to find new talent, bring attention to this talent, teach and nurture this talent to help it grow, and then send it out into the world in order to better the music business. They also give off a great sense of camaraderie, like they enjoy being their with each other. They bicker, joke, poke fun at each other, compete for singers to join their teams; and they it’s all in good fun.
Also, I want to point out that this show has convinced me that Carson Daly is actually pretty cool. He hosts the show and does a “Meet & Greet” with the contestants. He gets a bit of their backstory, why they came to the show, hangs out with their family and friends backstage while they view the performances, and then chats with them afterwards to wrap things up. And there’s just something about the way he does all of that that makes you really like him and care about the contestants even more. Good job, Carson Daly.
I’ve never really been a fan of reality tv. Ninety-nine percent of it is garbage. And the more that networks air the stuff, the more I think they’re running out of ideas for good television. There have only been a few that I actually like: Battle for Ozzfest, Kitchen Nightmares, Hardcore Pawn, and The Voice. So if this show is good enough to make me watch on a regular basis, not to mention give me hope for the music industry, then I think it’s worth a view from you.