Have you heard the word? The Superbowl football game is this Sunday. Who are you rooting for? The Giants? The Patriots? Or maybe the Giant Patriots with their star QB, Paul Bunyan Revere? I can’t say who will win, but I can guarantee we all will win if we decide to watch The Voice, which is airing after the game. The Voice is not mandatory viewing but it is a good candidate for your one mandatory non-mandatory show slot. Here are five reasons to watch:
1) The judges are perfectly mismatched
Have you ever been out on the town and seen one of those groups of friends that you can’t fathom why they’re hanging out? You wonder: “Do they all play the same obscure board/computer game? Do they share a very specific sexual fetish that involves diversity? Did they go to high school together?” The judges of The Voice are one of those groups. Adam Levine is a cool, douchebag, LA Jew—Christina Aguilera a oblivious, fallen star, hot mess—Blake Shelton a big ol’ lug, you know the type who’d help you move a armoire in exchange for a cold brew—and Cee Lo is the sort of crazy person that is lucky to be a brilliant musician because otherwise he’d be the tin-foil hat type. Not only is this very rag, rag-tag group forced to sit next to each other but also The Voice actually demands they fight over desired singers. It. Is. SO. Silly. It’s not like Fox’s competitions, in which the judges fit into their market-tested niche; this group is a bunch of weirdos that are forced to try to communicate in each other’s weirdo dialects.
2) It is not aimed at dumb tweens and/or old old people
The Voice works under the principle that grown ups are able to be grown and like singing at the same time. X-Factor and American Idol subsist on a dumb down blend of cynicism and schmaltz that appeals to both those too lazy and those too tired to focus. I’m not saying The Voice is a subtle program—hell, Cee-lo clothes match his giant red chair almost every episode—but more often than it’s competition it can pull off genuine.
3) It can save Community
The Voice currently stands as the only show anyone watches on NBC. 30 Rock? No one watches it. Parks & Recreation? No one. No one watched Community or Friday Night Lights or whatever other shows it seems like everyone on your trivia team watched. NBC’s primetime has found itself losing to reruns on TBS and Telemundo—that’s not cool. They need something to make the money it takes to float our critically approved TV babies. You want Community back? Well, Variety just reported (no, they didn’t) that every $1.00 spent casting a vote on The Voice goes directly to Donald Glover’s salary (no, it doesn’t). Yep, that’s totally true (no, it isn’t); I’m not lying (yes, I am). So watch The Voice—every $0.99 spent buying one of the performances on iTunes pays for paintballs for Community’s season three finale.
4) NBC casts ringer singers
There is a reason NBC doesn’t show basketball arenas filled with people ready to try out—they unabashedly fill the competitors out with less-than-amateur amateurs. Season one winner, Javier Colon was once had a major record deal, Dia Frampton was a mild YouTube star, Raquel Castro starred as the jersey girl in the film Jersey Girl—these aren’t nobodies, they are people who can actually sing and probably have agents. And to the judges credit the always picked the right people to move on (except Christina who would just pick whomever most closely resembled herself). As a result, it’s a show with better singers, singing better songs to judges with actual talent themselves.
5) I watch it
Come on! Guys! Frivolous reality competitions are not the same without someone with which to make fun of it. There are so many jokes ready to be made about Carson Daly’s face and Christina Aguilera’s propensity to wear her boobs above the neckline of her shirt and Adam Levine’s tattoo sleeve (a shanda!) and so on and so on. If not for me, then watch it for your friend—yeah, that one—who similarly is looking for fellow members of the Voice-Force (a nickname made up here that will surely catch on).
Or how about Smash? Let’s all agree to at least watch that.