Good job, America. If you solely base your cultural judgments on tonight’s Voice-centric decisions, America almost totally has it together. Tonight, whittling 20 contestants down to 12 following Monday and Tuesday’s strong Playoff rounds involved two artists from each team being saved by America’s vote, and one more artist from the remaining three being saved by their coach; and save perhaps one team—depending on whom you ask—America’s votes got it entirely right. And the coaches followed suit, making for a few semi-controversial saves, but ultimately, ending up with a very solid Top 12 heading into the next round of live performances
Result shows aren’t always the most entertaining fare, but there was plenty to accomplish in this tightly-packed hour. This was the first time we saw each team perform together and the time to finally get a confirmation on if our personal favorites were also majority favorites. I ended up learning a lot tonight: I learned that Chris Jamison and Wiz Khalifa—just a couple of pals from Pittsburgh—are a surprisingly well-suited duo (Chris sounded pro-FES-sion-al on “See You Again” and I’m awaiting his Adam-teased album probably more than any other former contestant’s). I finally learned why Oprah has her own line of Chai lattes at Starbucks and now might even cough up the extra 25 cents to support the very cool ladies of Girls Inc.
And I learned that even though season 8 has seemed a pretty tight race so far, a clear Top 12 has emerged this week, and while none of the choices for each team’s final three were too shocking, there are plenty of artists leaving tonight who will be missed. Here are the newly trimmed down teams, ordered from most to least controversial decisions:
America Saved: Corey Kent White and Meghan Linsey
As the only country contestant still left this season (who knew?!), Corey’s spot alongside Meghan in the America’s vote isn’t too surprising, so Blake’s save was always going to come down to Sarah and Hannah. Sarah made a huge splash as the first audition of the season, and has followed that up with more huge performances, but Blake must have seen more potential for growth in Hannah as an emerging artist.
Blake Saved: Hannah Kirby
Eliminated: Sarah Potenza and Brooke Adee
America Saved: Sawyer Fredericks and Mia Z
There would have been rioting if Sawyer and Mia hadn’t been the first two saved, but it also presented a difficult situation in (most likely) picking between Koryn and Caitlin, both of whom have fantastically varied vocal abilities. Pharrell went with presence over precision and kept his team firmly in the teenage range.
Pharrell Saved: Koryn Hawthorne
Eliminated: Caitlin Caporale and Lowell Oakley
America Saved: Joshua Davis and Deanna Johnson
Again, these top two seemed set in stone: Joshua Davis is a totally unique talent and America clearly sees the potential in Deanna that her coach has felt all along. What’s more surprising is that after referencing Tonya as his team’s rock multiple times, and adding on just before his decision that he hardly even knew Brian a few days ago, Adam went the way of “pleasant surprise,” shocking Brian. Finally, a little bit of surprise, though not necessarily a controversial choice, as Brian deserves to still be in the game.
Adam Saved: Brian Johnson
Eliminated: Tonya Boyd-Cannon and Nathan Hermida
America Saved: Kimberly Nichole and India Carney
And the least surprising choices all around were Christina’s trio of powerhouses—Kimberly, India, and with Christina’s own pick, Rob.
Christina Saved: Rob Taylor
Eliminated: Lexi Davila and Sonic
Were you surprised by any of the Top 12 choices tonight? Are any of your favorites headed home too soon? And with each team down to its top three talents, which coach stands the best chance to stack the Finals now?