Credit: Tyler Golden/NBC © NBC Universal, Inc.

Nobody doesn’t like Caroline Pennell. From the moment the 17-year-old shyly stepped onto The Voice stage during Blind Auditions to sing Ellie Goulding’s “Anything Can Happen”, Caroline has been stealing hearts (ours included). In fact, we think she has what it takes to steal enough hearts to become the competition’s next champion.

Caroline has the sort of vocal style we like to call “indie darling.” It’s the kind of singer that has a vulnerable quality to her voice — think Feist, Regina Spektor, or Sia. While Caroline isn’t the first singer of this brand to break her way into The Voice’s top 12, she’s probably the best so far. In Season One, Team Blake’s Dia Frampton, who finished second, filled that archetype first, followed by Melanie Martinez in Season 3.

Credit: Tyler Golden/NBC | © NBC Universal

However, there’s something warmer about Caroline than either of her “indie darling” predecessors, making us think she could take it all the way. Blake probably said it best after she sang “We’re Going to Be Friends” by The White Stripes: "I could literally be getting an amputation and if someone played your music, all I’d be able to think about is cotton candy." Even the dude playing guitar for her on that song looked like he wanted to put her in his pocket!  

Another thing Caroline has going for her is the right combination of humility and self assurance. While she started out shy and “aw shucks,” it was pretty clear going into the live rounds that she’s developed a lot of confidence over the course of the battle and knockout rounds. It’s enabled her to break away from the habit of imitating other, more famous “indie darlings” and sing with a quality that Adam identified as uniquely hers.

Finally, Caroline is actually pretty popular with fans! While anything can happen over the next few weeks, she is the most searched for contestant so far and been earning some impressive download stats. As one of the most talked about contestants, we think she’s got what it takes to give The Voice something it’s been yet to achieve: a winner who can carry their popularity over from the show into their professional music career.

What do you think — does Caroline have what it takes to win The Voice?


Amber Garrett is an editor at Wetpaint Entertainment. Follow her on Twitter and Google+!