Reality Check: Who Won The Voice Semi-Finals –Jacquie, Tessanne or Will? Plus: Has The X Factor Earned a Fourth Season?

reality check slezak doolittleIt’s season-finale week for The Voice and The X Factor, and to the shock of everyone here at Reality Check, America got it totally right in choosing both shows’ Top 3 contestants.

That doesn’t mean, however, that my cohost Melinda Doolittle and I don’t have plenty to disagree about this episode. For starters, we’ve got almost the exact opposite view on how to rank the semi-final performances of The Voice‘s Season 5 finalists — Jacquie Lee, Tessanne Chin and Will Champlin.

RELATED | The Voice Season 5 Semifinal Performance Recap: Keep Calm and ‘Carry On’ 

That said, we’re both pleased that Restless Road’s “reign of terror against harmonies” has come to its long-overdue conclusion on The X Factor — where Alex & Sierra, Jeff Gutt and (¡!) Carlito Olivero clearly deserved their finale berths.

RELATED | The X Factor Top 4 Performance Recap: Raise Your Hopeful Voice, You Have a Choice

If that’s not enough for you, there’s “Suavamente” dancing, one final Voice conspiracy theory (“Blake must not win!”) and Melinda’s no-punches-pulled take on the future of Simon Cowell’s British import.

So press play below for the full Reality Check experience, then hit the comments with your thoughts. And come back to TVLine all week for recaps, opinion and galleries related to The Voice and The X Factor finales!



Comments (122)

  • Tessanne for the win!

    Comment by Tyler – December 15, 2013 10:32 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Unfortunately, I don’t feel like she’s what the music industry wants. I guess she is “The Voice”, but . . .

      Comment by MariMari – December 15, 2013 10:40 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • Though I think Tessanne has a beautiful voice I can not get excited about her. She just does not do it for me and I just don’t think she will sell a lot of records.
        I am happy Michael addressed the comments about Jacquie Lee’s Angel because I totally agreed with him. She did amazing on that song and gave it a different twist from the original. I personally think that Jacquie Lee is a star in the making and I can see her selling records in the future.
        I like all three finalist from The a Voice.
        As far as the XFactor is concerned I love Alex and Sierra and believe they will hit the music industry by storm. I also like Jeff Gutt but not sure if he will be a star. Not crazy for Carlitto.

        Comment by MAB – December 15, 2013 11:58 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
        • +1

          Comment by HTGR – December 15, 2013 02:12 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
          • Yes yes yes X Factor deserves a 4th season! I abandoned its 3rd season after Kelly made what I still think is a dumb decision by not putting Victoria (the mother of a million kids) on her team during the 4 chair challenge, but now in the final stages, I have come back to it and I really think X Factor is much better this season than the Voice. It is so nice to see a show that is more about the great singers involved (x Factor) as opposed to a constant competition between the coaches to see who can be the most popular/likeable/cuteypie celebrity coach (the voice). Poor Tessanne, she barely got any airtime in for her win because of Christina’s “speech” about getting to work with Lady Gaga!

            Comment by matt – December 18, 2013 02:08 PM PDT  
        • The only act I feel excited about is X Factor’s Alex and Sierra. It must be their off-the-chart chemistry. Or perhaps it’s their stripped down, intimate approach. All I know is that I feel really emotional when they perform. The only other contestant that came close to affecting me as much was Caroline Pennell. While I can appreciate the talent of Tessanne and Jacquie, power singers do nothing for me.

          Comment by LB – December 15, 2013 02:24 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
        • Nobody is gonna sell records from the voice. Lol jacquie would be a lot harder to figure out tho

          Comment by Chris – December 16, 2013 02:26 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • Because you deaf???Was you blind when she brought down the house singing underneath it all???? :)

        Comment by Sunangel – December 16, 2013 09:57 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • @Tyler. We will not be the only ones voting for Tessanne. People who don’t think she has no place in the music industry are clearly not listening. Buyers did not launch her to #1 on iTunes *by accident.* Clearly, someone wants to buy her music – and vote for her. Tessanne Chin for the win indeed :)

      Comment by Teeny Bikini – December 15, 2013 02:56 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • Buying a kick ass cover of a Voice artist is different from buying said artist’s post-competition original music for the long haul. For now, there’s all the campaigning and street teams and voting army whatchamacallits to propel these artists to the top of iTunes with the sheer intention (and competitiveness with other fanbases, btw) to make them win; but Tessanne seems as marketable as Javier Colon or Jermaine Paul — good on paper (and to the ears), but not nearly as mainstream radio-friendly as the Kelly Clarksons of the world. Sorry, Teeny. I may be rooting for Will, but I like Tess, too — yet I see the gaping flaw in her whole image.

        Comment by Better Sundays – December 15, 2013 06:25 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
        • Tessanne can be radio friendly. She has already had hit songs in Jamaica and they are super catchy Reggae Pop. Look up her song Hideaway on You Tube, and you’ll see that she is a star in Jamaica. I think she should be a star in the States too. I would buy one of her albums post-Voice and I have never said that about any other contestant on the show. Her voice is amazing, and I love her Reggae Pop vibe and hope she will continue to make music like that after the Voice.

          Comment by Roxie – December 16, 2013 06:29 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
          • So she is a pro.

            Comment by Tony Tan – December 16, 2013 09:39 PM PDT  
        • ” but Tessanne seems as marketable as Javier Colon or Jermaine Paul” ooo… ouch :)

          Comment by Teeny Bikini – December 16, 2013 08:06 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
          • Agreed!!!!1

            Comment by Tony Tan – December 16, 2013 09:40 PM PDT  
      • @Teeny: Agree.

        @Better Sundays: I see Tessanne being a female version of Bruno Mars.

        Comment by Tyler – December 15, 2013 06:41 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I went to heaven and back when Sierra sang “down.” And I will be very happy if either Tessanne or Jacquie wins, though I will be perfectly happy if Will does.

    Comment by Dan (Haleyloonie) – December 15, 2013 10:36 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • I think Jacquie should win it all even though Tessanne is a great singer too I don’t think she can out sing Jacquie .

      Comment by Debby Silver-star – December 15, 2013 12:07 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • I think you got the names mixed up in that sentence.

        Comment by Emma – December 17, 2013 08:54 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • I will be happy if any of them win too, but unless Tessanne completely tanks I will be voting her. It’s been a great season.

      Comment by Teeny Bikini – December 15, 2013 02:58 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • Tessanne has a great voice, Jacquie screams her songs too much, out of the 3 of them, I have only downloaded Will’s songs and i would buy his music, it is today and he is over looked, I think he deserves the win over all

        Comment by Deb – December 16, 2013 05:21 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I’ve not been a fan of the X Factor until Alex and Sierra redeemed the show for me. I have downloaded several of their songs. Still I wouldn’t cry crocodile tears if FOX chooses not to pick up the show for another season. The show I am ecstatic to see return is The Sing Off. Hearing people with terrific voices who give actual harmonies to songs with no accompaniment other than their is the true definition of talent. No showy production backgrounds and dancers needed. Got that X Factor?

    Happy Holidays to you Michael and Melinda. Enjoy your holidays but get some rest before Idol starts in January. Looking forward to those upcoming Reality Checks.

    Comment by Carol Woodhouse – December 15, 2013 11:06 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • #thesingoff ftw!

      Comment by Lisa – December 15, 2013 11:42 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • The Sing-Off is and has always been my favorite talent-based reality competition show. If Michael gave it the same treatment he gave Idol, The Voice, or even X-Factor, it’d be great

      Comment by will – December 15, 2013 12:58 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • That would be awesome. Michael give up on XFactor and recap The Sing-Off. Or at least have a Reality Check just for them.

        Comment by Denise – December 15, 2013 02:54 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
        • Melinda has already made her appreciation for the show known, so let’s add it to the discussion schedule! Pleeeeaaase ENTV/TVLine? Maybe we could actually go back to more than 10-15 minutes of content again? Or just wait a week and start exclusively covering it while we wait for Idol to start up?

          Comment by will – December 15, 2013 10:23 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • The Sing Off is exceptional entertainment. I always smile like crazy throughout the show. What amazes me though, is how the combined group performances are always so on pitch and engaging. I mean the first one had to have at least 100 singers on stage singing *with choreography* and they KILLED it. It does make me wonder why most of the group performances on the “other shows” are dreckitude? Better show direction? Better singers? What? Anyhoo, it rocks :)

      Comment by Teeny Bikini – December 15, 2013 03:03 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • I would guess that the group performances on the “other shows” are crap for the reasons you stated. I would also guess that sounding good while singing in a group takes a lot of practice and experience that the solo contestants on The Voice, American Idol and X Factor typically don’t have. The Sing Off singers are already accustomed to melding their voices and harmonizing within their own group so it probably isn’t a huge leap to sound good in the combined group performances.

        Comment by LLL – December 15, 2013 03:37 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
        • Great explanation. It gives me a “real” appreciation for the ability to harmonize.

          Comment by Teeny Bikini – December 16, 2013 08:04 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • I was hoping that there would be some Sing-Off love. I am also very impressed with the Judges and their criticisms that are both very technical and supportive. It’s not all – give’em love or break them down that seems to happen more often on other shows, And the singing, WOW! The Bass Singer for Home Free – Is. A-Mazing!

      And, while being so excited about my favorite singing show – Pentatonix, who are doing really well right now, can thank their break-out to the Sing-Off, so it’s a show that has proven it’s a way for a not-so-typical type of performance group to become successful. I think that alone means the show deserves some discussion time.

      Comment by Tamim – December 15, 2013 04:30 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I’m glad that Melinda was the voice of reason here…. Because Tessanne owned that night…. I was plesantly surprised by Jackie and as for Will, I was pretty glad he outlasted Cole, even though I think I might be more inclined to buy Cole’s music than Will.

    Comment by Teddy Noxid (@Thunda_munk) – December 15, 2013 11:14 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Agree. Tessanne owned that night, and Slezak hardly even talked about her performance. I’m really beginning to think that Slezak only likes underdogs. He’ll never support a frontrunner even if they deserve to be a frontrunner. Everything Tessanne did with Bridge Over Troubled Water are things Slezak appreciates, such as stripping down the song to just a piano, focusing on just Tessanne on the stage, phrasing (“When times get rough”), singing in key with emotion, etc. Slezak didn’t talk about any of those things and what’s worse–he didn’t let Melinda talk about them either! His objectivity has never been this bad. I’m really beginning to understand why he’s not at EW anymore.

      Comment by Tyler – December 15, 2013 01:29 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • Or maybe Slezak refuses to support Tessanne because he had her leaving at the end of November yet she’s still there. And he can’t admit that he’s wrong.

        Comment by Tyler – December 15, 2013 01:32 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
        • It could just be that he doesn’t get anything out of Tessanne when he watches her perform. While he’s supposed to review these shows he obviously has a mind of his own and isn’t meant to serve strictly his viewers/

          Comment by Sly – December 15, 2013 01:36 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
          • Yet he still gave her an A- for Bridge Over Troubled Water. Is that the reason why he didn’t talk about Tessanne’s performance much?

            Comment by Tyler – December 15, 2013 01:49 PM PDT  
          • @Tyler I’d say it’s more that he can recognize a stellar performance (as he should), but that doesn’t mean it has to do anything for him.

            Comment by Sly – December 15, 2013 02:14 PM PDT  
      • Nah, Slezak supported Candice Glover and she was the frontrunner on Idol last season.

        Comment by aravis – December 16, 2013 03:10 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • You are so right!! Jacqui scream that is all she do!!

        Comment by Sunangel – December 16, 2013 09:48 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Yes, Melinda is the voice of reason:) I have never seen Michael so biased – not even with Haley. I think this is right Top 3 – but I think Cole could have easily made the Top 3 had he sung Shameless with the abandon and passion that it requires. I love that song. And it’s a real sang-like-it’s-the-last-time-you’re-ever-gonna-sing kind of song. And Cole’s just kind of consistently mellow, which I like *a lot* but it was just the wrong song choice. I think if/when Cole makes an album, it will sell. And I would be interested to at least hear it.

      Comment by Teeny Bikini – December 15, 2013 03:08 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • Agree. I’ve never seen him this bias either. In my eyes he has lost a lot of credibility this season. And I used to respect what he had to say.

        Comment by Tyler – December 15, 2013 06:56 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
        • Maybe he’ll snap back with AI… I doubt if I can sit through that show though so I won’t really know :)

          Comment by Teeny Bikini – December 16, 2013 08:08 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
          • There’s going to have to be some serious WGWG going on for me to tune in to Idol in January. The last thing I want to watch is another power ballad fest.

            Comment by LLL – December 16, 2013 08:53 AM PDT  
          • J Lo coming back pretty much guarantees that I won’t ;)

            Comment by Teeny Bikini – December 16, 2013 01:07 PM PDT  
          • I didn’t really watch Idol when JLo was on before. Surely she can’t be worse than Xtina with her sneaky bitchery. Or is JLo just a different kind of annoying?

            Comment by LLL – December 16, 2013 03:46 PM PDT  
          • JLo was infinitely worse, she did a 180 and helped trash down their best contestant her first season, was generally a totally fake BS spouting mouthpiece for the production script every season post auditions (where she was actually very good) and they had her promote herself more than the past (or even current) contestants on the big shows. I used to like her, but man she was a cheap sellout on AI.

            Comment by HTGR – December 16, 2013 04:20 PM PDT  
          • @LLL – as Teeny says JLo back means I’m out. Whatever The Voice may do at least they don’t do downright dirty damaging destructive tricks against their own contestants.

            Comment by HTGR – December 16, 2013 04:22 PM PDT  
      • At least I could understand his bias with Haley Reinhart, she was incredible. But Jacquie?!? I just don’t get it, not remotely. -shrug-

        Comment by Emma – December 17, 2013 08:57 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I love how thirsty Melinda is for young guys. She’s so gonna grow up to be a cougar.

    Comment by Cub – December 15, 2013 11:19 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • It’s rare for me to be able to root for all of the contestants left in a singing competition and be happy for whoever wins–this hasn’t happened since Allen vs Lambert–but that’s the way I feel about Jacquie, Tessanne, and Will. This trio has generated many, many of the season’s finest performances for me (along with some permanent fixtures on my iPhone), and they all sang lights out this week, so kudos to them.

    For The X Factor, on the other hand, I will scream bloody murder if anyone other than A&S takes the crown. Jeff is a solid singer, but he never strays from his comfort zone (and when he tried to pass “Without You” as a Carey song that’s never been sung as rock before, gah). And his whole “this is for my son” brand of campaign rubs me the wrong way. Carlito…is a candle next to Jeff’s flame and A&S’s hellfire. Just completely outclassed.

    Comment by birdhouse – December 15, 2013 11:22 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Ditto on this. I have a lot of respect for the Top 3 and I would genuinely happy for any of them to win. I hope the finale is killer, that will be a great end to a really great season. I hope they bring voted-out contestants back as well.

      Comment by Teeny Bikini – December 15, 2013 03:11 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • CANCEL X factor !

    Comment by Para – December 15, 2013 11:36 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • I know, right? And while we’re talking about canceling the horror that is The X Factor, let’s cancel Slezak’s “Sexy Back” moves as well. No, Michael. Oh, please, NO. That said, welcome to the Champwagon, dude. Like the SMILING silver-suited musician said: it’s been a long time coming.

      Comment by Better Sundays – December 15, 2013 06:36 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • XFactor: Alex & Sierra for the win. Jeff is excellent but I’m not convinced about his career chances.

    The Voice: I’ll be voting for Will. James was “it” for me. He was authentic, emotional & unique, missed notes and all. Jacquie’s lack of experience & emotional resonance completely negates her vocals (which are often screamy – maybe not this week but they have been.) Tessanne has the emotion & experience Jacquie lacks but for some reason still seems artificial to me.

    Based on Michael’s analysis of Christina’s crafty itunes mention for Jacquie, I’m more convinced than ever that itunes voting needs to go away along with the instant save.

    Comment by Leela – December 15, 2013 11:39 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Leela, in case you didn’t catch it, James Wolpert was on the Ellen DeGeneres Show this week as guest DJ. He sang a shortened version of A Case of You, which sounded fabulous. I think it’s great that Ellen is supporting him. Not only was he on her show, but she very publicly voted to save him during the instant save the other week. Anyway, hopefully her support will help springboard his career. In general, it seems like relatively unknown musicians she has had on her show end up doing quite well.

      Comment by LB – December 15, 2013 01:20 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • I’m not gonna lie. I’m voting for Tessanne, but LOVE Will’s voice. There is a whole lot of awesome in it. Whatever happens I do hope they all have successful careers. And I don’t mind if Will misses notes here and there for some reason, I mind much more when he oversings.

      Comment by Teeny Bikini – December 15, 2013 03:14 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I so disagree about Jackie on Angel. I thought it was atrocious, and showed that she doesn’t really have the background as yet to know when not to scream. I hope she is not the winner.

    Comment by Lori – December 15, 2013 12:22 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Exactly WHAT about that performance did she sing? That was literally a song that Tessanne could have sang in the exact same key and been praised for it. And then let’s address the, “She doesn’t know when not to scream” aspect of what you said. It’s no secret that the contestants don’t necessarily get the creative freedom that we’d like to think they do. Holly Henry confirmed that for us post-knockouts. So would it not be safe to assume that it isn’t so much that she maps out her songs so that she’s presented as some screaming jackal (that she isn’t by any means), but rather that’s just how she’s instructed to sing the song with what bit of creative control she can manage. The girl has two youtube videos where she isn’t screaming songs and they’re wonderful. She quietly sang “Crazy”. You know, that song by Ceelo that you’d think she could just wail on? No she sang it lightly. And on top of that she has a song she wrote (that I think is brilliantly written for a girl her age) that is quiet for 90% of the song. It isn’t a matter of she doesn’t know when not to scream, it’s the fact that people are moved to excitement when she sings like that so Christina will obviously play into that. She rarely belts notes any higher than Tessanne any week.

      Comment by Kimbo – December 15, 2013 12:55 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • *exactly what about that performance did she scream

        Comment by Kimbo – December 15, 2013 12:55 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • @Kimbo. That was by far Jacquie’s best performance – and that’s saying a lot – considering what a talented kid she is, but I do think she *missed* the meaning of the song a bit. It’s not really a belt-y kind of song, it dreadful little dirge about death and dying and mortality. It should be very haunting and all that. Anyway, I am *not* on the Jacquie hate-train, but that is my one little critique.

        Comment by Teeny Bikini – December 15, 2013 03:19 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
        • I think it can be belt-y…..it’s just that Jacquie took the song to church. Which isn’t usually a bad thing…but with this song..eh.

          Comment by Kimbo – December 15, 2013 03:37 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
          • I hear ya. I hate critiquing that performance because I really was moved by it. “took it church” – I love that saying :)

            Comment by Teeny Bikini – December 16, 2013 08:05 AM PDT  
      • I agree. I don’t understand all the Jacquie hate. I can point out flaws in the other vocalists too and considering their relative AGES I think Jacquie should get a small pass at least

        Comment by Blair – December 15, 2013 04:21 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Xfactor needs a swift cancelling. Until the show can convince me that they aren’t going to sacrifice vocal excellency and an ability to naturally command the stage for an unholy amount of props, unconvincing clothing meant to scream “I’M A FUTURE POPSTAR”, and a pretty face. I am thoroughly not on board with the show. I still like season 1 as a whole over these other two.

    Comment by Kaba – December 15, 2013 01:02 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Cancel. Cancel. Cancel. Cancel. Now.

      Comment by Teeny Bikini – December 15, 2013 03:20 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • I don’t agree. Since when has pop music cared about vocal excellency? I quite like the variety on that show and you don’t find many shows with Alex & Sierra or last year’s Carly Rose.

      Comment by pmcd – December 16, 2013 02:17 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • While I’m rooting for Jacquie and Tessanne tomorrow night I feel more inclined to want Jacquie to win simply because she’s essentially given me the only thing (the most) that I haven’t felt from Tessanne and Will as much. excitement. Granted she hasn’t had the best vocals of the season, she’s just been much more exciting to watch. I didn’t really get into the groove of Tessanne until her top 6 performances, prior to her songs were just reminding me of another average week on American idol. Not bad, in fact very good vocals, just nothing worth being excited about, nothing worth making me want to continue to vote for her. With Will, his body of works just, to me, consists of a bunch of songs that were essentially failed attempts that moments all leading up to “At Last” and since then he’s been on a decrescendo for me. People say that Will is such a soulful singer and honestly…I am not really on board with that. It feels more like he tries to manufacture soul by hitting countless amounts of glory notes which is arguably similar to what Jacquie does with her songs…the main difference is that with Jacquie there’s a consistency…it doesn’t feel like she’s trying to force soul through her vocals moreso than her movement around the stage. But overall, even with Jacquie’s inexperience there’s just something more to her that resonates well with me more than the other two. I almost feel like she genuinely wants this more than Will or Tessanne do. Which is crazy to say considering they’re both older folk who’ve been doing this for so long. I just sense a stronger fighting will from her, she seems to take what her coach says more to heart than the other two.

    Comment by Sly – December 15, 2013 01:25 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • And that’s exactly the problem I have with Jacquie–she takes too much bad advice from her coach who wants her to be a mini-Xtina. What I like about Adam this season is that he seems to let his artists be themselves. I really believe Matthew would have lasted longer if it wasn’t for Xtina. And I really believe Jacquie wouldn’t be so polarizing if it wasn’t for Xtina.

      Comment by Tyler – December 15, 2013 01:43 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • I actually have the opposition reaction to Adam. For example, he has forced tessanne to do some old lady music like Gladys knight and many river to cross that she obviously has put her at a disadvange. The same with James if you see it’s original stuff he is more like wgwg but adam tried to make it in this rocker that he is not. Both coaches have their pro and cons,but I actually think xtina has improved more than adam.
        Also Matthew was responsible for his exit. He didn’t sing well the song choices were ok. Will and james did a good job with imagine dragons but Matthew felt short. The same with the 1d song ( his song choice).

        Comment by Kate – December 15, 2013 02:06 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • Yep.

        Comment by Carla Krae – December 15, 2013 02:06 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • TVline refuses to let me comment what I want to say

        Comment by Sly – December 15, 2013 02:46 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • @tyler I feel like what makes her polarizing is how over-embellished she can make Xtina’s good advice rather than it being an abundance of bad advice. Xtina isn’t wrong to tell Jacquie to leave her heart on the stage and give some vulnerability. It’s all in the execution. Along with what makes her so polarizing is how she works the stage and her tone because she either comes off as disingenuous or screechy. Though, I rather take a 16 year old that attempts to emulate the feelings of a song than one who’ll smile through any song happy or sad. With Matthew, it was just bad advice. With Jacquie, I think Jacquie just over does the advice. Ultimately I feel this season’s winner will be determined by song-choice and hunger to win. Last season the finalists appeared to be determined by the natural charm and allure the singers had in their voices or performances. So this should be different. From what I’ve seen, Jacquie at her best is more compelling and just exciting than Tessanne or Will at their best. Granted, Jacquie hasn’t had a #1 song on iTunes so this should be interesting.

      Comment by Sly – December 15, 2013 02:42 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • I can’t help but think it was Xtina who told Jacquie to throw the mic on the floor and fall on her knees for Cry Baby. How can Jacquie over-embellish any advice for something like that? And I still think it was Xtina who transformed Jacquie into a shouter because she’s one herself.

        Comment by Tyler – December 15, 2013 07:04 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
        • FWIW, ITA with you. Xtina hasn’t changed her methods; she used the same coaching “philosophy” with the girls who were on her team two seasons ago. Many of them were guilty of oversinging, shouting or just trying too hard. The proof is in the pudding; it’s all about creating the mini-Xtinas. I do blame Christina; I don’t blame her impressionable proteges. Does this mean that I’m supporting someone other than Jacquie? Not necessarily. I really don’t take the competition aspect of these shows that seriously. For me, it’s all about what you do in the real world.

          Comment by MC – December 15, 2013 10:03 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
        • What about throwing the mic on the floor and falling to her knees is bad coaching? I’m more specifically talking about whenever she’s encouraging Jacquie to leave everything on the stage. I don’t really perceive the girl as a shouter but it doesn’t surprise me that Christina finds more of a connection in belted notes, which she even tried to deviate her from that route in the beginning. I don’t believe Christina is trying to turn the girl into the shouter, otherwise there’d be no use or point in her trying to justify making Jacquie have these soft and tender moments with Angel and Clarity. I think that Christina see’s what works, tried to do something different, saw it didn’t work, put her back into what did work and then waited to give her something that could fuse soft and heavy vocals.

          Comment by Sly – December 15, 2013 11:02 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
          • I think Christina “decided” to “fuse soft and heavy vocals” after Jacquie was getting a reputation as a screamer on the internet and in the blogosphere. I don’t think it was a coaching epiphany, but rather a reaction to criticism (justified or unjustified, but still a prevalent POV). Btw, for some coaches, a fusion of heavy and soft vocals would be their first instinct when coaching any protege. You wouldn’t need an epiphany; you would just have the protege start from that point. My focus, however, is on Jacquie after she leaves The Voice. This show shouldn’t completely define her musical identity.

            Comment by MC – December 15, 2013 11:46 PM PDT  
          • It almost seems as though you don’t want to give Christina for at least recognizing that she ought to make strides to reel the girl in soon regardless of whether she’d intended to later on or not. I heard “screeching/screamer” comments come to life after week 2. That’s breakneck speed, no matter what kind of softer route Christina had gone the following week there is no way she could have avoided looking like she was merely responding to criticism. I hardly doubt this was some sort of thought that dawned upon her as she quietly scrolled through the comments of a recap blog. I also wouldn’t simply assume that this isn’t something she had in mind to begin with. This is just my thought so feel free to disregard it, I’d like to think that Christina is making an effort to emulate Blake’s pattern this season, only with a twist. Use what works and what continue to works, but instead of only using what works try and find new things that worked too. Pretty practical coaching.

            Comment by Sly – December 16, 2013 01:13 AM PDT  
          • @Sly – Let’s agree to disagree. I’m not giving Christina credit and I think you’re bending over backward to see something that isn’t there.

            Comment by MC – December 16, 2013 05:04 AM PDT  
          • @MC I just don’t see what’s incredibly justifiable in claiming she coaches based off epiphanies.

            Comment by Sly – December 16, 2013 10:29 AM PDT  
          • @Sly – Fine. I think we both said everything we wanted to say on this subject.

            Comment by MC – December 16, 2013 01:14 PM PDT  
    • “I didn’t really get into the groove of Tessanne until her top 6 performances” Me too. It did take a while to get her footing. I think the song choices were just awful.

      Comment by Teeny Bikini – December 15, 2013 03:21 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Agree a thousand per cent.

      Comment by Tony Tan – December 16, 2013 09:42 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Will CHAMPLIN is really good !

    Comment by Bighug_Kens – December 15, 2013 02:01 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I feel like what makes her polarizing is how over-embellished she can make Xtina’s good advice rather than it being an abundance of bad advice. Xtina isn’t wrong to tell Jacquie to leave her heart on the stage and give some vulnerability. It’s all in the execution. Along with what makes her so polarizing is how she works the stage and her tone because she either comes off as disingenuous or screechy. With Matthew, it was just bad advice. With Jacquie, I think Jacquie just over does the advice. Ultimately I feel this season’s winner will be determined by song-choice and hunger to win. Last season the finalists appeared to be determined by the natural charm and allure the singers had in their voices or performances. So this should be different. .

    Comment by Sly – December 15, 2013 02:16 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • pardon my repeat comment -___-

      Comment by Sly – December 15, 2013 03:30 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • TVline refuses to let me post my comment :/

    Comment by Sly – December 15, 2013 02:17 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Huh? I never had probs with commenting on Slezak’s articles. Whether or not you agree with him, my comments have always stayed intact. It’s Matt Mitovich who blatantly deletes comments which are against HIS opinions (no matter how polite and Rated G they are), which is why I now won’t touch his articles with a 10-foot pole.

      Comment by webuiltthepyramids – December 15, 2013 06:46 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • I’m not accusing him of doing anything :o

        Comment by Sly – December 15, 2013 10:58 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Dear Michael and Melinda, thank you both for this wonderful “Reality Check” edition. I’ll assume that when you say “America (i.e. the voters) got it right” you are referring to “those left.” (Because on both shows, it’s possible that “the voters” didn’t necessarily “get it right” in earlier shows.)

    I suspect Alex and Sierra will win X Factor, which will only reinforce/reward their “schtick” that many are, already and at best, tired of. I am among that group.

    I suspect that the real race on The Voice is between Jacquie Lee and Tessanne. Personally, I go with Tessanne, because she has such exceptional vocal ability, but it’s going to be a tight race.

    While I appreciate the “Secretariat” reference, I think putting Alex and Sierra in Secretariat’s class is an insult to that extraordinary horse. (After rewatching that race [today] multiple times, I’m still as in awe and emotional as I was when it took place 40 years ago.) Secretariat had competition (for a while) and continued to, not just rise above, but turn on burners that no one knew existed.

    Alex and Sierra don’t really improve. They continue to do their “schtick.” They just happen to come across as “better” than the rest of their co-horts in this season’s X Factor. I’m not impressed.

    Comment by My Alter Ego – December 15, 2013 02:27 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • I don’t believe that just because you aren’t impressed by what they do, which I don’t understand the negativity in calling it a “schtick”, doesn’t mean that the comparison isn’t fundamentally the same. Frankly the comparison is them essentially claiming that Alex and Sierra are comparable to the great secretariat…while the other competition is like…puppy dogs. A&S are spectacular performers.

      Comment by Sly – December 15, 2013 02:37 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • Sly, I can’t understand what you are attempting (badly) to say in the first sentence or two (or more), but basically I can understand that you are among those who seem to think that Alex and Sierra are wonderful..

        However, if you truly view A&S as “spectacular performers,” you’re standards are definitely not the same as mine. How many of your friends agree that A&S are “spectacular” performers? It will be interesting to see just how long, once they win, their “schtick” generates interest.

        Comment by My Alter Ego – December 15, 2013 04:10 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
        • I stopped bothering to pay attention anything you said when you pulled the “I have better taste in music than you do” card. It’s one thing to not like the same things as another person, it’s an entirely different ball game to insinuate that because you find what you enjoy superior to what I enjoy, that means you have superior tastes. And until you can actually articulate what exactly is is that they do beyond dismissing it as a “schtick” I hardly have any hope that you intend to say anything conducive to what I’d hoped to simply be a discussion or some kind of talk.

          Comment by Sly – December 15, 2013 04:54 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • I get you don’t like Alex and Sierra. But they come across better because they are better, by miles and miles and miles. They didn’t really need to change something that was already working. And by “better,” I mean they sell tons of music on iTunes – and the real winner of this show will be able to sell music once it is over. In that respect, they have already won.

      Comment by Teeny Bikini – December 15, 2013 03:30 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Usually Rascal Flatts is what I think of as a prime example of “country singers that don’t sing well”. Their recordings are so infested with auto-tune they could all be Restless Road-quality singers and we wouldn’t know the difference.

    Comment by kcostell – December 15, 2013 02:48 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Michael and Melinda,

    Thank you for Reality Check. I know it must be time-consuming and you are really busy, but you always come through with great shows, even with the holidays upon us.

    Thanks again. Cheers.

    Comment by Teeny Bikini – December 15, 2013 03:32 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Will has really gown as a performer. His vocals have been very consistent and he has been taking risks with his song choices. Last week he was sick and may not have been vocally spot on, but it did not bother me. He has also made me like songs I have not liked before.
    It is nice to see Slezak to get on the “Will Train”, just this once.
    As far as Tessanne she is a very competent singer, but her voice is so generic that it does not make me want to buy her songs. What kind of artist does she want to be?
    I do agree with you about Jacquie. She did not scream last week, although I think she wanted to.

    Comment by hmr – December 15, 2013 04:39 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Team Adam will win again. That is the only important thing

    Comment by Fernanda – December 15, 2013 05:50 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • i never understood this philosophy. it seems so hollow and childish to vote for the love of a coach and not their artist/s. i vote for the most deserving contestant of the season who (and this is where subjectivity comes in) moved me the most, regardless of who their coach is.

      Comment by webuiltthepyramids – December 15, 2013 06:49 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • As long as Will and Tessanne win I will be happy. I would buy their albums. Jacquie has talent but should make an album when she is more mature.

    Comment by Davey – December 15, 2013 07:42 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Hmm…Michael says we should not dare say that Jacquie is screaming and then he shows a clip from Angel of her screaming her notes.

    Comment by Davey – December 15, 2013 10:18 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Lol. It was a softer form of screaming. J/K – I like Jacquie. She has crazy good potential, but Tessanne makes more sense as the winner of this season. I think Jacquie is still finding herself, but Jacquie will probably be much better when she’s away from the handlers (not just Xtina) on the Voice.

      Comment by MC – December 15, 2013 10:35 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Davey, I noticed the same thing and it made me chuckle.

      Comment by LB – December 16, 2013 04:33 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • 1. that wasn’t really screaming
        2. 85% of the song wasn’t like that
        3. Michael doesn’t make the videos or chose the clips (in fact it’s pretty clear that the clips often poke a little fun at him and meant to tweak him at times hah)

        Comment by HTGR – December 16, 2013 12:31 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
        • I’m sorry it was screaming-belting. It was the worst part of her singing Angel. I liked her version but I still prefer Tessanne and Will and I will definitely be upset if this 16 year old beats the more talented and mature Tessanne.

          Comment by davey – December 16, 2013 03:27 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Agree with Melinda that Tessanne was better this week than Will but don’t agree with her that she was better than Jacquie. Agree with both that this was a very good top three to have made it though. It actually made sense.

    Comment by HTGR – December 15, 2013 10:23 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • I like how Jacquie can go to so many interesting and subtle tones and has the most distinctive voice of the three and, IMO, has brought it to where the performance just hits you and takes over the most of the three (Tessanne while technically hitting it a real lot, more often than not, just seems to have that something missing and has a less distinctive tone), which is pretty impressive considering she’s the true amateur of the bunch (not that that matters for this show as they have been open that you are allowed to have tons of serious experience and have done all sorts of things prior).
      .
      A great top three though.

      Comment by HTGR – December 15, 2013 10:30 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • As for XF, given those top four, it made sense, although I could easily pick many others going back to the very first elims for the third spot (although Carlito has gotten a lot better). A&S’s harmonies and pitch at times in the earlier songs this week did seem a bit off, glad Melinda noted that since I was starting to wonder if something had gone wrong with my ears since nobody else was willing to bring it up. Jeff had a damn fine week. A&S have done better over the season, although I almost feel that Jeff took it this week, especially since the results night song he was the one who brought it too, but overall A&S have had more moments still to this point.

    Comment by HTGR – December 15, 2013 10:25 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I see more of a winning chance in Jacquie Lee than the other two. Sure Tessanne has the better voice but when I see that little girl sing her heart out I just want to explode with thrill

    Comment by Bri – December 15, 2013 11:35 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Michael, Secretariat beat Twice a Prince by 31 lengths at the Belmont, and beat Sham in both the Preakness and Kentucky Derby for the Triple Crown in 1973.

    Comment by karen – December 16, 2013 01:07 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • You guys are awesome! The best online weekly review always! Pls never stop doing this. You have no idea how I enjoy watching your videos.

    I agree! Finally Restless Road is gone! Took America long enough. It was about time, those kids just can´t sing together period. That gropu never worked..
    Carlito totally deserved to be top 3.. Alex and Sierra for the win and then everyone is happy.

    I am rooting for Tessane to win The Voice.

    Comment by Titina – December 16, 2013 07:27 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I just hope they all sing well tonight, and make it hard on the audience to choose a winner.

    Comment by JM – December 16, 2013 08:34 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • +1 for doing a Sing-Off review.It is a great production all around,nice host,smart judges and interesting takes on music in general.

    Comment by Shaun – December 16, 2013 09:52 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • geez I hope Jacquie Lee doesn’t scream Silent night tonite

    Comment by Soapy Smith – December 16, 2013 10:38 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Cancel ALL reality shows on FOX, grow some balls and make some good dramas and comedies! Tessane for Voice win, although I despise Adam to the core!

    Comment by DavidSask – December 16, 2013 10:41 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Song choices have been posted in iTunes. Jacquie Lee sings I Am Telling You from Dreamgirls. I’m going to be sick. Christina and the audience are going to go nuts. And I am going to be ill with this 16 year old singing an African American song of defiance made famous by Jennifer Hudson in the movie and Jessica Holiday on stage and sung impeccably by Jessica Sanchez on Idol. Please, please don’t let Jacquie Lee win this thing.

    Will is doing Bryan Adams Everything I Do and Tessanne is doing Whitney’s I Have Nothing.

    Comment by davey – December 16, 2013 03:24 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Kudos to Slezak and Doolittle for taking on the Jacquie haters. I’m so tired of the “screeching” criticism that is wildly inaccurate. For the record, Jacquie’s not my favorite, but credit should be given where credit is due. That’s not screeching!

    Comment by Angie_Overrated – December 16, 2013 06:19 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I thought Tessane did not do well with her first song Try by Pink! She did a lot of screaming and was off key! She just doesn’t do it for me.

    Comment by Rose Ann Scherger – December 16, 2013 06:53 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I really wanted James to be in final instead of Tessanne. I am not saying Tessanne is not a fantastc singer like Kelly Clarkson stated. But it would really bother me if Tessanne wins. I have been very vocal about her being in this competition. If the Voice had a show in Jamaica Tessanne would not be able to compete. I was one who had voted for her but after reading about her musical history and then reading her Wikipedia page I began to realize she is a professional. She was a backup artist like Jermaine Paul but in 2007 she released three successful singles and has a history of opening for artist like Gladys Knight and Patti Labelle. I dare anyone of my critics to read the wiki page and judge for yourself. So because she is successful in another country she is allowed to compete. So if Jamaica had a competition would they allow Philip Phillips or Carly Rae Jepson to compete. Is it fair for young performers like Will and Jacquie to compete against? I don’t think so America! Jacquie and Will don’t even have a Wikipedia page. Come on America do the right thing and have an amateur win like Will or Jacquie.

    Comment by Tony Tan – December 16, 2013 09:44 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Wel you will be mad tomorrow and we don’t care! :)) success!

      Comment by Sunangel – December 16, 2013 10:03 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Michael, you couldn’t keep a straight face when Melinda said you guys are good with X-Factor now and want another season. Really? I don’t see how you even made yourself watch this season. For you I could see an extra glass of sauvignon blanc getting you through, and maybe Melinda did a lot of praying, but I just couldn’t hack it, and I did try.

    Comment by dj – December 16, 2013 09:51 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Thank you Melinda for being a voice of reason, Tessanne won by a mile, and it sure as hey-all wasn’t a photo finish!

    Comment by Terry – December 16, 2013 11:39 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • THIS IS DEFINITELY THE MOST BORING BATCH!

    Comment by Mae – December 17, 2013 02:43 AM PDT  Reply To This Post

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