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Less polish, more potential on Monday night’s ‘The Voice’

Season 7 | Episode 3 | “The Blind Auditions Part 3” | Aired Sept 29, 2014

Last week: Adam Levine and Blake Shelton proved bromance isn’t dead. Gwen Stefani gave out bedazzled shirts, and Pharrell Williams was so intuitive, he ended up coaching the coaches. Now let’s see what’s in store this week as blind auditions continue on The Voice.

Hey, good lookin’
Our first audition of the week is 25-year-old John Martin, and this one’s FOR THE LADIES. John drives a forklift and looks like a male model. While his “Sweet Pea” isn’t the best we’ve seen, the song choice is savvy, and the whistling is impeccable. It inspires three chair turns and the descriptions of “delicious” and “creamy” from Gwen. Blake simply calls John “a good-looking man,” and that’s enough to get a new bromance blooming as John picks Team Blake.

The Voice - Season 7

Like a bowl of Lucky Charms
Next up is Jessie Pitts, a sweet-faced 18-year-old from Birmingham, Alabama. “The Story” is a difficult proposition for Jessie’s breathy vocal style, but her gorgeous tone is enough to turn the heads of Blake and Gwen. Blake likens Jessie’s voice to “a bowl of Lucky Charms—marshmallows only.” Despite that flowery (and appropriate) description, Jessie chooses girl power via Team Gwen. And I choose Lucky Charms.


When the undersell sells it

Busking isn’t easy, and during his background segment, 19-year-old Ricky Manning shares how discouraging it can be to busk in the streets and subways of New York. Ricky’s “Love Me Again” is a bit unsteady and has pitch issues throughout, but his tricks show potential, earning him a button push from both Pharrell and Blake. Gwen calls Ricky “a diamond in the rough,” and Pharrell agrees, capturing Ricky for his team with the magic of the undersell (let’s just start calling this “the Pharrell method”).

“Creamy” is the code word
Tonight’s episode seems to be all about hearing potential despite the nerves and trappings of the blind audition process, and Kelli Douglas is the perfect example of that. The 31-year-old single mother struggles with stage fright, and it shows in her performance of “Danny’s Song.” Kelli can’t seem to catch her breath, but recovers just enough to demonstrate a soulful voice and a world of potential, earning her three chair turns and a spot on Team Adam. Gwen calls Kelli’s voice “creamy,” because this is the code word for the night.


Most inspiring

The most inspiring story so far belongs to 25-year-old Blessing Offor. After being born without sight in one eye, and later losing sight in his second eye, music became Blessing’s “North Star.” He followed it all the way to New York, where he learned to get around by memorizing the subway map (You guys, I can’t even read the subway map!). In summary, Blessing is awesome. And while his “Just the Two of Us” starts in the wrong key, he regains his footing near the end of the song, getting four last-minute chair turns and a well-deserved home with Team Pharrell.

The Voice - Season 7

Let me entertain you
Troy Ritchie, a 21-year-old from Trabuco Canyon, California, opens his background piece with walking handstands, Family Guy impressions, and a note that he loves to entertain. His “Out of My League” is surprisingly gravelly and mature, and while Troy has control issues at the top, he gets better and better as the song goes on. It’s one of the more pleasant surprises of the night, landing him on Team Gwen.

gwen 

The funny farm
I don’t usually devote a lot of time to contestants who don’t make a team, but I have to mention 16-year-old Cole Wilkinson. Cole lives on a farm that has a Texas-shaped pool, a zipline, and a trampoline, plus 14 goats, two donkeys, a horse, three dogs, and two cats. They call it “The Funny Farm,” and I want to go there. Cole’s “Classic” does not turn any chairs, BUT he gets to go home to 14 goats. I call that winning.

Montage madness
Oh God, the montages are back, bringing the hammer down on some unsuspecting contestants: Alessandra Castronovo (Team Adam), Jordy Searcy (Team Pharrell), and Kensington Moore (Team Blake). Not cool, producers! Not cool.


I was you too

The most radio-friendly voice of the night comes to us via Mia Pfirrman, a 19-year-old from Temple City, California. Her “Unconditional” is uneven, but Mia works hard and takes a lot of risks that ultimately pay off, inspiring all four coaches to push their buttons. Gwen notes that Mia is trying to find herself much like Gwen did at that age, saying, “I was you, basically.” This prompts Adam to say, “I was you too,” and this solidarity prompts Mia to join Team Adam.

The Voice - Season 7

It ain’t me, it’s the song
Our second-to-last contestant is 24-year-old Bree Fondacaro. Bree’s background segment includes interviews with her parents, who seem pretty wonderful. Bree’s father is a little person, while her mother is an average size, and Bree counts their love story as one of her inspirations (aw). If only Bree’s song choice could be as compelling as her family. “It Ain’t Me Babe” is all wrong for her smoky voice, almost obliterating it into a whisper. Despite this, Bree’s tone piques the interest of Blake, garnering her a chair turn and a place on his team (where I hope he finds her more flattering song choices).

Welcome back
My favorite audition of the night would have to be 24-year-old Anita Antionette. Anita auditioned unsuccessfully in season 3, but she brings none of those demons to the stage, giving an emotive, charismatic performance of “Turn Your Lights Down Low.” Her warm tone and unhurried flow turns the chairs of all four coaches and inspires the biggest bidding war of the episode. Gwen is so taken, she can only exclaim “I love you!” over and over again. While “I love you!” isn’t the most articulate sales pitch, it’s enough to win Anita to Gwen’s team.


So long, farewell, auf wiedersehen, good night

While we had plenty of happy endings tonight, we also had a few others who didn’t make a team. Michael Stein, a 62-year-old cantor, is eminently likable but doesn’t sing enough on “The Devil Went Down to Georgia.” Mistee Merritt (“You Got to Be”), Jeremy Cole (“I Can Dream About You”), and Samantha Sampson (“Heads Carolina, Tails California”) are montaged (adding insult to injury).

Who were your favorites from episode 3? Least favorites? Leave your thoughts in the comments, and I’ll see you back here after tonight’s episode of The Voice. Thanks for reading!

Blake

The Voice airs Mondays and Tuesdays at 8/7C on NBC.

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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