‘The Voice’ Season 5: What To Expect

Getcha red chairs ready, because The Voice returns tonight (September 23)! While it’s tempting to take Executive Producer/Host With The Most Carson Daly‘s declaration that, “This is the best season we’ve had!” with a cynical grain of salt, if the (confirmed) best promo ever is any indication, the man on the yacht could actually be right.

Whether Christina Aguilera and Co. will continue to walk on water, or just continue to churn out tepid careers, remains to be seen. In the meantime, here’s what we can expect.

Old Coaches are the New New Coaches
Remember last season’s hype over Shakira and Usher, and how those new coaches were the best thing to happen to The Voice since the red chair? Take that sentiment, but apply it to the return of Xtina and Cee Lo…and multiply it by infinity (Cee Lo rose from the sea as Poseidon and Christina walked on water for crying out loud). It will be a major love fest during the blind auditions for the prodigal son and daughter.

“There’s only one group of coaches that initially made the show successful, and I love the fact that the purity of that is back again,” Adam Levine recently said to The Huffington Post, setting himself up for a super awkward Season 6 when Usher and Shakira return.

They’re Over Making Super Stars
If you are still expecting The Voice to produce the next chart-topper a la early American Idol, it’s time to let go, because the coaches certainly have!  “If you’re not in the negative in this business, you’re succeeding,” noted multi-Platinum Grammy winner Adam Levine during July’s TCA’s. “There’s been a lot of success depending on how you define the term success,” he added, clearly not defining success in terms of sales, fame, airplay or touring.

The Bitch is Back
Shakira: mad love, but we’ve missed the other blond. After a tame bout of critiques last season — not to mention complete lack of wigs — Xtina is back with her signature style: no holds barred, brutally honest feedback.

She might be smaller than she was in past seasons, but Christina’s opinions will be as big as ever. Hopefully the same can be said of her crazy wigs.

From Cee Lo’s Menagerie…
Season 2 brought Purrrfect the Cat, Season 3 brought Lady Bird, so there has to be a new exotic pet to complement Cee Lo’s head henna during Season 5! Though Cee Lo’s boa constrictor will make a brief appearance, it won’t be his long term sidekick.  “It was a little hard to manage,” the animal loving eccentric admitted during a chat with HuffPost Live.

A Three-peat Fires up the Competition
Enough is enough! After last year’s country takeover and victory, along with the two additional Blake Shelton victories, in seasons 2 and 3, the other coaches are ready for the three-time winner to be ousted from his victory seat.

“I don’t even want to win. I just want him to lose,” Adam previously quipped. The target certainly is on Blake’s head, as even returning coach Xtina noted that she’s happy to return to The Blake Shelton Show. Blake seems unfazed, replacing wooing contestants by displaying his CMA Award with wooing contestants by displaying his Voice trophies.

Cher-ing Her Wisdom
Well, now this is quite the couple: coming on board to mentor three-time Voice champion Blake Shelton’s team during the Battle Round will be… Cher. Huh. To the victor goes the spoils, apparently. Along with Cher, singer/songwriter Ed Sheeran will mentor Team Xtina, One Republic‘s Ryan Tedder will mentor Team Adam and Grammy-winner Miguel will mentor Team Cee-Lo.

Ratings-Driven Rules
The format and rules remain the same this season…for now. “We reserve the right to introduce a new feature to the format that breathes new life into it,” said Carson Daly. If ratings go down, producers will be scrambling to add a twist of Season 3’s steal proportions to the mix.

Rapunzel Escapes the Sprint Sky Box!
Hopefully you took copious notes on how to be awkward on Twitter last season, because role model Christina Milian won’t be around to demonstrate this season. The bubbly social media correspondent is off dancing with the stars, with no replacement tapped just yet. Her…do we call it insight?…will be deeply missed, but kudos to Milian for escaping her castle in the sky.

The Voice Season 5 premieres on Monday, September 23. Will you be watching?