TV review: NBC’s ‘The Voice’ offers a better option to traditional talent shows

By Ashley Chaffin

TV review: NBC’s ‘The Voice’ offers a better option to traditional talent shows

NBC deciding to air the second season premiere of “The Voice” directly after the Super Bowl, which was the most watched program in United States history, was probably one of the most genius moves NBC executives could have ever made.

Not only did the millions of people who got hooked on the show last year stay up to watch, but all of the people who didn’t think to change the channel immediately following the game also watched. I fell into the second of those two categories, and now, I’m hooked.

I didn’t watch last year because, usually, if it’s not a cooking competition, “Jeopardy” or “The Bachelor,” I hate television competition shows. They just lose my interest quickly. When I heard what the concept for “The Voice” was, the only thing I expected it to be was “American Idol” on steroids.

For anyone unfamiliar with the concept, great singers are invited to come to a blind audition where they sing for some of the top artists of today: Christina Aguilera, Cee Lo Green, Adam Levine and Blake Shelton. The judges sit in spinning chairs and choose their team based on their voice alone. If they turn their chair around, it means they want the singer on their team, and the singer then chooses from the artists who turned their chairs.

As season one aired, more and more people seemed to be tuning in each week. I still didn’t let this sway me because, let’s be honest, most of America seems to love all the competition shows. Some of the most-watched shows on TV right now are “The Biggest Loser” and “The Amazing Race.” I’m also starting to think “American Idol” and “The Bachelor” will never be off the air, with both hitting their 10-year anniversary sometime in 2012.

Anyway, what finally made me give in was when I realized it wasn’t just my reality TV-loving friends and family who were watching – it was most people I know who watch television on some sort of regular basis.

I finally caught an episode of the first season – the last episode. I have to admit, the talent was incredible, and I got curious about season two instantly. This show was obviously nothing like “American Idol.” Not saying those kids aren’t talented – they are – but that show is a lot less about the talent and more about getting attractive people who sing well on television.

The first two parts of the second season’s blind auditions aired this week. The first episode was after the Super Bowl, and the second was at the show’s normal time on Monday at 7 p.m.

So far, the talent on this season is pretty insane. There hasn’t been an audition song that I wouldn’t download and listen to anytime. More often than not, more than one judge turns their chair, and the fight to win over the artist gets pretty entertaining.

Coming from someone who really isn’t a fan of television competitions, I’d recommend this show to literally anyone who enjoys music. Whether you’re a fan of any of the judges, you have to admit they are some of the best raw voices in music today. And if the first two episodes are any indication of the rest of the talent on the show, it’s going to be an insane group of artists vying for the title.

If you missed the first two episodes and are curious about the show, both of the episodes are on, and if you can’t watch Monday nights, they are uploaded online by the next day.

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