Post Mortems

The Masked Singer Castoff: I Couldn't Keep the Secret From My Twin


Warning: This post contains spoilers for Wednesday’s The Masked Singer.

Despite a run that only got more impressive every time she appeared in Season 5 of The Masked Singer, Seashell was ousted from Fox’s costumed singing competition Wednesday. And when the giant shell came off, Sister, Sister star Tamera Mowry was revealed to be the crooning crustacean. (The two-hour episode also saw the departure of Crab — read our recap to see who he really was.)

On Wednesday, TVLine spoke to Mowry — whose TV resume also includes Home & Family and The Real — about how she just couldn’t keep her Seashell secret from twin sister Tia Mowry. Read on to hear what she had to say.

TVLINE | Given that I think another one of the acts on this season is a sibling act, I wouldn’t put it past this show to try to get both you and your sister up there. Was that ever an option? Talk to me about how you got involved.
I have always loved to sing. Anybody who loves me knows I sing in the shower, especially my brother. I grew up with a lot of “Shut up! You’re too loud!” [Laughs] I sang all the time when I was cleaning, when I was in the shower, in between studying in college, I thought I was Celine Dion. So I actually started my career in a singing group called Voices. And at that moment, my sister and I did a pilot called Sister, Sister. So I had to decide which path I was going to take. And I’d always loved singing, it’s just that acting was right there in front of me.

Obviously, I think I made the right decision in that moment. Sister, Sister went on to be an American classic, a hit. But at the same time, I always questioned, “When will I be able to sing again? And on stage? And perform?” I sang “I’m Going Down” on Sister, Sister and to this day, people absolutely love it. But I really didn’t perform, like singing with music on a stage and dancing, oh gosh, in over 20 years. It was always a dream to revisit it, what that felt like. When The Masked Singer came about, my co-host on The Real, Adrienne [Bailon] did it and she looked at me after it was all over, she was unmasked, she said, “Tamera, you must do this show… You have to do it.” So I did. There was an opportunity that came up a year ago and I wasn’t able to do it, so when it came back around, I said yes with no questions.

TVLINE | What did Tia think? Did she know?
Yes, of course. I think the hardest part was trying to keep it quiet. The only people who knew initially were my mom, my husband and my cousin. My cousin was there with me. He’s my ride-or-die, he’s my best friend and he’s also a worship leader at his church. So I didn’t have this huge entourage with COVID, and I wanted someone there — he’s like my life coach, so he coached me throughout the entire process. And my mom was on the phone pretty much every performance and after, so I had my small support group. But I couldn’t tell anyone else. You’re not supposed to tell anybody! [Laughs] That was the hardest part. But literally, the first performance, I had found out that my sister had texted my brother, Taj, and my brother had texted me and was like, “We know this is you.” [Laughs] And I mean, you can’t deny it.

TVLINE | Nicole Scherzinger guessed your name in this week’s episode. What was happening underneath your mask when you heard her say it?
I was like, “Oh my God! Finally! It took you guys this long!” [Laughs] But I was also like, “Damnit, she knows.” There was no hiding it. She was so confident. And I loved that she thought it was my best performance. I haven’t seen it, but I literally had the most fun singing this song. It was a childhood song that I loved. I wanted to pay homage to me just deciding to be an entertainer and this was one of the first songs that I made a dance with, with my babysitter’s daughter and my sister.

TVLINE | I know you’ve addressed this before, but I have to ask, in case there’s been an update: Any talk of revisiting the Sister, Sister revival?
As of now, no… Sometimes you don’t mess with perfection. [Laughs]

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