Just four contestants remain on “The Voice” and only two coaches are still in the game. But on a season of mostly stellar performances, a single front-runner has not emerged. So which coach will get to claim victory—will Cee Lo Green win his first, or will Blake Shelton go for two in a row? Looking back at this season’s best and worst performances and using scientifically unsound calculations, we try to predict a winner.
1. Nicholas David: Cee Lo’s soul singer, Nicholas has been unabashedly himself throughout the competition—a sort of tender caveman who is very proud of his facial hair. Though he, too, has been a bit too one-note in song choice, his personality continues to be surprising.
Best: “My First, My Last, My Everything.” In the first live show, Nicholas seemed to come out of nowhere, doing a spot-on Barry White impression that paved the way for the his stroll down the annals of disco soul throughout the rest of the season. +8
Worst: “September.” Maybe he got off to a great start, but by last week, Nicholas’ disco trip became tiresome. Productions complete with rainbow glow lights and bell-bottoms, and backup singers in afros, it’s all getting to be a bit too much. -7
Extra credit: Nicholas is the in-house comedian, always the funniest during the confessional videos and even in the most rote and drab interviews with Christina Milian, he knows how to kick things up a notch. This guy should host “The X Factor.” +3
2. Trevin Hunte: Showing early promise in the blind auditions nailing “Listen,” Trevin pulled at our heartstrings with his tale of a teacher that didn’t believe in him. On this show, Trevin got sucked into doing ballads, though he does them well. But can he do anything else?
Best: “And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going.” Trevin just sang the hell out of this song, reducing Christina Aguilera to an overheated, blithering fool. Sure it was over-the-top dramatic, but that’s how that song is meant to be sung. +9
Worst: “Scream.” Trevin tried to break out of the ballad streak by showing he has a “funner side.” He sang well, but didn’t exhibit enough star power to pull off Usher. -5
Extra credit: His mom’s house was destroyed in Hurricane Sandy. +1
3. Terry McDermott: Team Blake’s classic rocker has been a consistently strong performer throughout the season, but also a little one-note. Excelling on mostly crowd-pleasing tunes from the ‘80s, is Terry relevant to today’s music?
Best: “I Want to Know What Love Is.” This was the one performance where he broke out of the arena rocker gig, and just sat still and gave us some vulnerability. On the flip side, it was still a 1980s power ballad. Even though he excelled, he drilled another nail into his box. +5 (out of 10)
Worst: “Over.” The sheer nepotism of Blake giving Terry his own song to sing was what made this number annoying. He sang it as well as any other performance, but it was the only song of the aughts that Terry even attempted. Unfortunately the one time he tried something new, it just wasn’t a very good song choice. -4 (out of 10)
Extra credit: An endearing tick—Terry sings on his tip-toes. +5 (out of 5)
Score: 6 (out of 15)
4. Cassadee Pope: The last girl in the competition, the former Hey Monday frontwoman has been generating buzz since we learned that she toured with last season’s runner up Juliet Simms. Though she got off to a lackluster start in the competition, she broke out when she showed flexibility, willing to go country under Blake’s guidance. Even though she stuck to her pop roots, she’s been on fire ever since.
Best: “Over You.” Another cheap shot of Blake giving out his own music to his protégés, but Cassadee ascended when she took on this country ballad, finally proving she deserved the spotlight. +9
Worst: “My Happy Ending.” Cassadee kicked off the live shows doing Avril Lavigne, and it was too soundalike, and started off a streak of mimicking more famous pop stars that took weeks to get out of. -5
Extra credit: In her blind audition, Cassadee got all four chairs to spin for her. +5
And there you have it. Cassadee Pope should take the top spot, with Terry McDermott in second place. A sweep for Team Blake!