Capping off the second week of battle rounds on The Voice Season 3 was an episode filled with stellar performances, action-packed steals, and pointless celebrity mentor commentary.
It all started with mentor Michael Buble rambling about music, and Blake Shelton wondering who paired him with this cross-genre singer.
Liz Davis vs. Nicole Johnson
But two gals not confused about their pairing were country cuties Liz Davis and Nicole Johnson on a song Blake knew all too well — “Baggage Claim” by “my wife, Miranda.” With a seven year age difference, 18-year-old Nicole was concerned that she was too green for the seasoned sounds of 25-year-old Liz Davis.
But it seemed that Blake was more concerned that Liz had reached the age where country musicians turn into pumpkins if they haven’t already made it big. Gosh Liz, you are, like, so old!
Her “mature” look (complete with booty shorts and stilettos) really seemed to appeal to Lady Killer Cee Lo Green during the performance, but afterward he complimented Nicole’s sound. Coach Adam Levine also thought Nicole had taken the performance, while Christina remained neutral, saying it was too close to call.
Blake said he wished Liz had been more alive on stage, but noted some breathing issues in Nicole’s performance. Ultimately it was Liz’s control — and, presumably, perfectly toned legs — that won her the battle. Nicole made one last incredibly awkward effort to earn a steal that reduced her to sobs, but Blake made a special backstage trip to wipe her tears (and his conscience) clean.
Alessandra Guercio vs. Kayla Nevarez
Up next was a battle between two powerful youngsters from Team Adam — the performing arts high school student, Alessandra Guercio, and the teen with a tough home life, Kayla Nevarez. Both singers sounded more like Team Xtina contestants, but Adam was able to take their pop-infused sounds and create a beautiful duet on Katy Perry’s “Wide Awake.”
In rehearsals, mentor Mary J. Blige was quick to call out Alessandra’s intense pronunciation and OCD need for perfection. That’s OK, A, we often suffer from being overly perfect, too.
But, like Adam’s slightly feminine patterned sweater, the contestants left their nerves in the choir room, and broke it down in the ring. With Cee Lo Green dancing and conducting in his big red chair and Blake Shelton raising his eyebrows in surprise, the coaches seemed to really enjoy the performance.
Cee Lo was the only one to name a specific contestant the winner, picking Alessandra, but ultimately it came down to coach Adam Levine, who decided to wanted to “win this” with Kayla.
But coach Christina Aguilera wasn’t ready to give up on Alessandra yet. The Brooklyn native was having major confidence issues, and Xtina was ready to fight for her. Coach Adam Levine was so impressed with Christina’s gesture that he actually went over to Her Highness’s throne to thank her.
Despite all of the time spent on Nicole’s tears and the coaches’ banter, three battles proved too dull to air in completion. On Team Cee Lo, Ben Taub went up against Mycle Wastman, and since Ben’s story wasn’t even worthy of getting a complete blind audition, it’s no surprise that the win went to Mycle and his strange name spelling.
Then, 15-year-old Adanna Duru from Team Adam battled the 28-year-old mother of two Michelle Brooks-Thompson on a hit Beyonce song. But Adanna’s lack of experience and Sasha Fierce-ness lost her the battle.
The final battle NBC breezed through was the most surprising. Team Christina’s cheesiest pop duo, Beat Frequency, battled Latin pop singer Laura Vivas. Despite the married couple’s wacky style and Laura’s shocking resemblance to Cha Cha from Grease, the battle proved too dull for television, with Laura making it past this round.
Emily Earle vs. Mackenzie Bourg
Looking to capitalize on their youthful energy, Coach Cee Lo Green paired country-based subway singer Emily Earle against Justin-Bieber-meets-Harry-Potter contestant, MacKenzie Bourg.
The two rocked "Good Time" by Owl City and Carly Rae Jepsen, which inspired MacKenzie’s dad to break out into a series of football-style “whoops.” Understandably, coach Adam Levine was scared to provide MacKenzie Bieber with criticism, but he wasn’t the only one with notes for the young musician. Blake Shelton also thought Emily won the performance.
But Xtina was all about MacKenzie’s enthusiastic performance. In the end, Cee Lo agreed, much to Mr. Bourg Sr.’s delight, and Emily was sent back to her underground office.
Were you pleased with tonight’s performances, winning contestants, and steals? Tell us what you think below! And be sure to tune in next Monday for the final week of battle rounds!
Rachel McRady is an editor at Wetpaint Entertainment. Follow her on Twitter @rachelmcrady.