The Voice Rule Change: Coaches' Teams Not Guaranteed a Slot in the Season 3 Finale

avery wilson the voiceTheir spinning chairs might look pretty comfy, but it won’t matter much, as The Voice‘s quartet of coaches will be perched on the edge of ’em for the remainder of Season 3. In a change from the NBC hit’s first two cycles, it’s entirely possible that one or even two coaches’ teams will be shut out of the December finale, NBC announced today.

Indeed, here’s how the remainder of the season is shaping up:

* Next Monday and Tuesday (Oct. 29 and 30) will focus on the “Knockout Rounds,” in which Christina Aguilera, Cee Lo Green, Adam Levine and Blake Shelton all will narrow down their teams from 10 to five using head-to-head matchups where the contestants choose their own songs. As one singer performs, his or her rival will sit on a stool inside the Voice “boxing ring,” then they’ll swap places, and finally wait for their coach’s verdict.

* The Season 3 Top 20 will perform and the audience will be allowed to vote for the first time on Monday, Nov. 5 (8/7c) and Wednesday, Nov. 7 (8/7c), a section of the competition that’s being dubbed as “The Playoffs.” (The show will warm the bench on Tuesday due to NBC’s presidential election coverage.) On a special Thursday results show (Nov. 8, 8/7c), the top two vote-getters from each coach’s team will advance; each coach also will be able to save one of his or her three at-risk contestants from being ousted, resulting in a Top 12.

* Here’s where the twist comes in: Beginning on Nov. 13, the bottom two vote-getters will be sent home every week, regardless of whose team they’re on. In other words, fewer weak links in the Final 4, and no injustices like Season 2’s Jamar Rogers getting the boot only because he was on Team Cee Lo alongside Juliet Simms.

What do you think of these changes to The Voice‘s format? Sound off in the comments!

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. Marta says:

    Finally!!! Yes! Yes!! This makes so much sense- and will definitely be righting some of the wrongs in previous seasons. It seriously makes me more excited to tune in. Thanks, NBC

  2. Stacie says:

    Now that’s a great rule change. Probably the best one, better than the steal or anything. Allowing the best people to continue is the way to go, not just necessarily the best on a certain team. It’s similar to a rule I want on American Idol, where instead of having the Top 12 be 6 guys and 6 girls they just have the best singers, so if there are 8 great girls and 4 great guys it’s better than a couple great girls cut and a couple guys getting to stay because they just happen to be a certain gender. Nicely done on The Voice’s part.

  3. gailer says:

    Sounds good

  4. L says:

    GREAT choice by The Voice. I do appreciate how they continue to tweak the show and try to fix what does and doesn’t work. They don’t always succeed, but at least they aren’t nailing themselves down to one set of rules or format and I appreciate that. (I credit this to Mark Burnett who has been able to keep Survivor fresh for so many years, by changing things up.)

  5. Chuck Finley (AJ) says:

    If Jamar was such a tragedy how come we haven’t heard from him since? Or any other Voice contestant for that matter lol. I love the show, but they haven’t produced any talent to speak of.

    • Sam says:

      I really don’t understand why people say that? I mean the show is excellent entertainment while its on… if the singers attain or do not attain success thereafter is their problem and not ours. We get an entertaining show and thats all that counts.
      It would be nice if someone from the show became a superstar but that doesn’t mean it HAS to happen in order for the show to be considered worthy.

      • Chuck Finley (AJ) says:

        To me it is nothing more than high end Karaoke at this point lol. I enjoy it but the judges do continually tell the contestants that they are “stars” in the making. Idol has produced some legitimate stars, so I expect The Voice to also produce some if it wants to be considered on the same level.

        • Artlight says:

          A) hasn’t IA produced like 4-5 legitimate stars? And it did that in more than 10 seasons, so it’s not fair to compare their track record to the The Voice when the latter has only been on the air for 3 seasons
          B) Chris Mann is releasing his album next week and it looks like it’s going to be pretty succesful. His album preorders charted on itunes and his Christmas album was number 1 on Walmart (which is impressive ’cause the album is Walmart only right now)

          • Chuck Finley (AJ) says:

            lol. AI produced two pretty huge stars in the first 3 seasons. Chris Mann is not a star of anywhere near that caliber. Pretty sure Clay Aiken has done well on iTunes and in Wal Mart sales but he is not a huge star either.

          • Artlight says:

            and when did I say he is a star? All I said is that he could be pretty successful.
            Even though I like him I know he isn’t as well known as someone like Kelly Clarkson because his album isn’t even out (which is really the main reason why it’s annoying when people assume no one from The Voice s02 will be big, most of them haven’t released a thing yet) and also because he’s an AC singer and for the most part those types of singers don’t become super famous

          • tripoli says:

            Everything Chuck has said is right. I am not watching this season but watched the first two and agree that it’s entertaining enough. It is quite laughable though how often so many of the contestants are told how amazing and destined for stardom they are. And yet, none of them is anywhere to be found. And like Chuck said, Idol produced awesome talent right out of the gate, so number of seasons means nothing. If anything Idol is no longer producing the great talent that was there in the early seasons. These shows are touting themselves of being able to discover and produce legitimate singers who are expected to get mainstream careers out of it. That isn’t really happening with The Voice. I think this new rule is a step in the right direction, but if the contestants were that good and had such a great fan base, it wouldn’t matter if they won or not. Someone would scoop them up, give them a contract, and the built in fan base would buy the albums.

          • TheBeach says:

            I think AI got really lucky in having Kelly Clarkson as their first winner. It was their first season and produced a lot of buzz and started a ratings bonanza. The show might have had a completely different future if Justin Guarini had won.

    • Brenda says:

      While he didn’t win, check out Chris Mann on ITunes…there’s a great voice from the show who seems to be doing well. I bought some of his music just yesterday.
      Sometimes it’s not necessarily “winning” the show that propels their careers but just the exposure on national tv to get their name & voice heard. Best examples from Idol ; Daultrey, Adam Lambert, Casey James (he’s nominated for an ACA right now), and Jennifer Hudson.
      This change is fantastic news for the contestants! Way to go NBC!

    • MrTemecula says:

      Unless you are a Marvin Gaye, John Lennon, Paul McCartney or Carol King or even Lady Gaga or Adele, it’s hard to write a hit song and you are dependent on your label or manager.

    • teatime says:

      I don’t watch these shows in hopes of seeing the next Ke$ha before she becomes a star!
      I watch for all the awesome, unexpected, and often brilliant performances. Those contestants have a tremendous amount of talent. If you do not “hear from them again” that does not mean they do not have talent and that does not mean they are not doing things you would like if you heard it.
      Judges and producers who are concerned about which artist they can ‘market’ better are almost always going to push for which artist they think is “the new” someone else. Boo. Let the contestants with the most votes move forward. It never made any sense to lose a contestant because of what team they are on.
      NEXT they need to get rid of having the judges influence the vote total in later rounds. The steal is a great idea and it makes The Voice unique. They should just keep the steal going and somehow allow the judges to steal a voted-off contestant if they want, and bring them back.

    • Friend says:

      Has anyone checked out how DIA Frampton or Juliett Simms are doing. Quite well- thank you!!!

  6. Josh says:

    How much you wanna bet Adam and Blake will be the only ones who’s team wont be decimated and Jealous haters of Xtina will make sure her team don’t win

    • Artlight says:

      yeah, I think that’s the biggest problem with this rule change (and the whole team format really). A lot of people vote for Teams Adam and Blake just because they think the coaches are hot, not because they actually like the artists, so this means that some of Xtina’s people will end up getting even more shafted than usual just because people don’t like her.

      • Pearl says:

        Adam is hot, like the lover you’d liek to have. Blake isn’t hot, he’s charming, and handsome, and gentle, and… Welll, he’d be the husband/prince charming (with an humor twist). But that shouldn’t hurt the other coaches, cause they will be there till the end of the show, anyway. xD

    • teatime says:

      I find it hard to believe that anyone ever votes for someone because they like the coach.

  7. Titina says:

    YES! Perfect! That´s all The Voice needed yet to be perfect.
    Oooh! Cannot wait! I am so excited. Best decision ever!

  8. Mitchell says:

    These changes the show keeps making are just better and better and better. BEST SINGING COMPETITION SHOW. Period. And Season 3 is easily the strongest so far.

  9. Bevin says:

    What makes The Voice the best singing competition show is that they aren’t afraid to change things up.

  10. algalhi says:

    Good change, making things fairer. I love the steals, too! One thing I’ve thought for awhile is that The Voice cuts people too quickly at the end. On American Idol, you get to see the good singers week after week and that gives you time to become a real fan who will buy their music after the show. But, maybe The Voice is going for ratings and isn’t as interested in record sales.

    • seattlejohn449 says:

      I totally agree….after all this talk about building “teams” the reality is they are all being set up to get the ax and then the slaughter begins…it’s good for the judges’ screentime but as soon as I start getting invested in someone they’re gone…plus with the judges taking over song choices and stage production it really doesn’t give us a very true picture of what any particular singers record will sound like but just keeps jacking up the judges’ star power…I would love it if after they get to a certain point the show would nurture the top 10 or whatever and let us spend alot more time with them and their own choices and material

    • Jacob says:

      That’s actually the other part of this change – starting November 13th, there will be only 12 people left in the competition, yet six weeks of live shows to go – so they will be eliminating only two people per week, instead of four. It will give us more time to get to know the singers.

  11. Leo says:

    I like all the changes, just don’t like the new thing about it not being about the teams. I think there should be a finalist for each team.

  12. Forwarddad says:

    Why? By the time you get to audience vote a singer should be able to stand on their own. If a coach mentor is doing right by their singer then they will be left standing . A good singer should not be sent home in order for a coach to keep a bad singer.

    • teatime says:

      I agree. For all the earlier rounds the judges have the same number of contestants each. At some point, every singer needs to stand on their own. If a judge has more contestants who make it to the final rounds, then so be it.

  13. Great idea, makes it a lot fairer.
    I’d also like to see them stop with the constant recap & spoiler clips for the blinds & other pre-recorder episodes – with all the time they focus on those they could easily show full performances from every artist, instead of the poor sods who get reduced to a highlight clip.
    Also, ditch Christina Miliawful fast.

    Lastly, well said @Forwarddad, fully agree with you there.

  14. Pat says:

    Thank God. The teams thing was pissing me off.

  15. Ste ven says:

    Not a regular viewer as Voice still gas lots of problems but this is a HUGE CHANGE FOR ThE BETTER TO MAKE SURE RIGHT PERSON WINS

    this was always my major complaint against the format..what if Blake had 3 outstanding singers that on any other show would be the final 3; and CeeLo had really mediocre singers…old format,ceelos mediocre …singer would’ve advanced to final 4 & Blake would have cut 2 singers obviously better than Ceelis.. Srr they gonna still have 4 finalists? Without every coach having one, that wouldn’t be necessary but they still might wanna be diff than Idols 2 & XF 3…unfortunately with 4 finalists, you can easily get a diff winner than with 2…just ask bill Clinton & Ross Perot although many of you are too young to understand that

  16. Xandra says:

    Good change for The Voice and makes you wonder how this would’ve affected last season. The audience voted Katrina into the finals, not Tony. The judges won’t be able to favor 1 contestant over the other anymore. Maybe Jermaine was always the vote leader regardless. I think if Dez makes it to the Top 12, he will be a real wildcard. He might be able to pull in votes regardless of how well he performs.

  17. TC says:

    I think the change could affect the coaching, by putting more pressure on the coaches if they want their team to win. This is a good thing for all involved!

  18. zaza says:

    I think there is still a chance of someone good going home in the Knockout rounds. They should ditch the “match-ups” and just have each of the 10 sing, then pick the best five out of that. Otherwise you might get two people competing against each and doing great, but one of them has to be declared the loser and two other folks who both suck, but one has to be declared the winner.

    • algalhi says:

      True! I think the judges try to pair one stronger and one weaker singer together, but often the weaker singer steps up. I like the idea of the coaches choosing their best 5 singers. Maybe next year.

  19. sonja says:

    This is my first season watching and my family and I love it! Excellent family friendly (we have teenagers) entertainment! I still don’t understand why they call the steal as “steal”. It is a save. Coaches aren’t stealing the singer because the coach got rid of them first. Love the show! It is the highlight of my Monday and Tuesday!

  20. asherlev1 says:

    THANK YOU!!! A change that should have been implemented while the show was in its formative stages, but I will take what I can get.

  21. Danny says:

    It’s nice to see a show that’s using some common sense. I’d never seen the Voice until this season. Mannnnn, it’s a great show. All the judges are better than any judge American Idol has ever had. That includes the effiminite Bully who used to be over there.

    I like how they critique without bashing the contestants. The conestants themselves are pretty good. From what I understand, one person can’t vote a gazillion times. Overall this is my new favorite singing show. I’m glad there’s going to be 2 seasons every year.

    • teatime says:

      I agree the non-bashing is big plus.
      One big issue with the voice has been that it had way too many contestants and not a very long season. So they did not get a lot of performances. It sounds like they have addressed that this year. Another issue with the Voice has been when the judges weigh in later in the season and send the wrong person home even when the right person had the votes (i.e. Katrina.) I don’t know yet if they have fixed that.
      The next issue with the voice is how often the judges pick the song. I’d rather hear what the contestant picks.

  22. Danny says:

    The reason there are more breakout artist on AI is simple. Nearly everyone on the voice is or has been a professional singer in one way or another. In other words, most of them have had a shot or two. Or they are already as good as they are going to be. Eventually the voice will produce a star.
    Now with AI. Nearly everyone is completely undiscovered and has more room for growth. Also AI season is longer and each performer has more exposure.
    However, I find the format of the voice to be far more entertaining to watch. I can’t stand the long open auditions with the poor singers and goof offs at the beginning on th AI season.

    • Dani says:

      Has it occurred to anyone that the reason AI produces more stars is that the show is tied to the biggest pop music radio outlet in Los Angeles. Do you really think Ryan Seacrest/KIIS FM is going to give airplay to artists from a competing show?

  23. Julia says:

    awesome. finally a GOOD change in the format.

  24. FreeHaley says:

    Excellent BUT they start it too late! Cutting 20 down to 12 in one swoop stinks, way too many. I wish they’d just go down to 16 so we’d get more to the real rounds where you start having a chance to grow and maybe survive one bad week.

    • Jacob says:

      Cutting 20 to 12 was known as the “Live Playoffs,” and was more a quick way to get to the Top 12. Now that we’re in the Top 12, only two will be eliminated each week, so we will definitely have time to get to know these people a little better.