Monday night television housed some intense competitions. Bones were breaking during the Monday Night Football game. Candidates were swinging during the final Presidential debate. San Francisco was rallying during the NLCS to make it to the World Series. And most importantly (to Lady Bird and Carson Daly), tears were flowing — really, really flowing — during The Voice.
The series had the most fierce competitions of the night as the Battle Rounds moved into its final week. Contestants duked it out (and, did we mention, shed tears?) to stay on Adam Levine, Blake Shelton, Cee Lo Green and Christina Aguilera’s teams.
Team Cee Lo, Bout 7: Alexis Marceaux vs Daniel Rosa
Second-timer Daniel Rosa faces off against New Orleans singer Alexis Marceaux on Team Cee Lo. Adam Lambert’s “Whataya Want From Me” proves to be a challenge for both — the notes hit the high end of Daniel’s range, and the song causes Alexis to work against her classical training and crisp pronunciations. Seeing Daniel’s confidence wane, both Cee Lo and mentor Rob Thomas stress that Daniel needs to believe he’s going to make it if it’s ever going to happen.
The two belt it out on stage, having significantly improved since rehearsals. Alexis’s performance is virtually flawless, and Daniel makes it virtually impossible to ignore his emotion through both his voice and his expressive arm gestures. Cee Lo cites that he, too, is “flawed in a very fantastic way,” and thus selects Daniel. We’re sure losing because she isn’t flawed is a tough pill for Alexis to swallow.
In true Daniel fashion, he begins sobbing on his way off stage (tear count: 1 for 1). Cee Lo then sneaks up behind the crying crooner during his post-performance interview, which sparks more sobbing, followed by even more tears as the family swarms Daniel from out of nowhere. Daniel, Cee Lo and the rest of the Rosas have a sweet group hug, and our stone cold hearts earnestly feel emotions.
Team Adam, Bout 6: Brandon Mahone vs Nicole Nelson
Poor Nicole Nelson. Just because she lives in Vermont, she’s always reduced to “Hippie Nicole Nelson” — even when she’s wearing rock star stilettos! Well Nicole, you are so much more than a hippie to us: you are a pitch-perfect, four-chair spinning vocal powerhouse, and we don’t care that you might have lived in a commune.
Anyway, Hippie Nicole Nelson is paired with 18 year-old Brandon Mahone to sing “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough.” The two blow Adam and Mary J. Blige away during rehearsals. Brandon is a little hesitant, clearly intimidated by Nicole’s seasoned voice, but receives praise and encouragement from his coach and mentor.
Brandon has charm on stage, but it really is The Nicole Show with this one. Nicole towers over Brandon, both in height and vocal ability, and the winner is clear by the chorus. Adam picks Nicole, who proceeds to cry backstage (tear count: 2 for 2).
The Un-televised-But-We-Sort-Of-Care Bouts:
To keep Monday night’s show to a mere hour, three bouts go un-televised — some which we actually would have loved to see. Contestants can at least rest assured that they took one for America, as the debates had to go on.
Adam’s seventh bout has Brian Scartocci against Loren Allred. Adam picks Loren, who we’ll hear for the first time in the Knockout Round. Blake’s seventh bout pits Ryan Jirovec against former Hey Monday front woman Cassadee Pope. We’re kind of shocked this wasn’t aired, but we’ll tune in to see winner Cassadee during the Knockout round. Adam’s final bout of the Battle Round is Artist vs. Poet rocker Joe Kirkland against reggae singer Samuel Mouton. Joe makes it to the next round.
Team Christina, Bout 7: Devyn Deloera vs. MarissaAnn
In the final performance of the evening, 20-year-old pop singer Devyn Delora and 15-year-old MarissaAnn go head to head with En Vogue’s “Free Your Mind.” Both ladies are very wide-eyed to be in the presence of mentor Billie Joe Armstrong, who encourages them to take a rock approach to the femme classic. MarissaAnn tearfully shares her concerns about being The Voice’s youngest contestant with Billie Joe and Christina (tear count: 3 for 3). We are nervous for Devyn in rehearsals, as she tries to outshine MarissaAnn with an aggressive amount of ad lib. Even Christina knows it’s time to cut back on the runs, which, fortunately, Devyn adjusts for the performance.
The two have a powerhouse diva-off, with only a splash of over-sexed adolescent dance moves. The performance prompts a creepy smile we haven’t seen from Adam since, well, the last display of over-sexed adolescent dance moves. And all in all, it’s the most fun battle of the night. The judges are all full of praises when it’s over, and Christina has a tough decision in front of her. She picks Devyn, citing her experience. Blake seizes the opportunity and uses his final steal on MarissaAnn, ending the tears shed for the evening.
Before America votes (on The Voice, of course), we have one more Battle Round to go. Only Christina has a steal left in her arsenal, and, knowing the pop princess, we expect it to be used in the most dramatic fashion possible. The performances, drama, crying and battles conclude on Tuesday night!