Blake Shelton finally saw one of his singers sent home on this week's The Voice elimination show. He also became the second coach to stir up some buzz in two weeks, as the country superstar had a few choice words for someone who made some unkind comments about the unlucky eliminee.
The Voice whittled its Top 6 down to the Top 5 on Tuesday night, and it was Holly Tucker, the Baylor marching band standout, who was sent home. Tucker was visibly upset when host Carson Daly revealed that America's final save went not to her but to her teammates, The Swon Brothers.
Yet as emotional as she was, her reaction paled in comparison to Shelton's Twitter speech after he caught wind of one blogger's comments about Tucker late Tuesday evening.
Houston Chronicle music critic Joey Guerra posted a link to his article regarding the results on Twitter, with the text "The Voice sends one singer back to Texas. Don't worry, it's not the one we care about."
Whether it was that comment or the content of the article (or both) that irked Holly's coach, we don't know, but Shelton had some strong words for Guerra via his own Twitter account, some of which aren't fit for print.
"It's people like you that make me sick," read Shelton's first tweet of several on the subject. "Holly is not only a talented singer but a great person that's simply chasing a dream."
Later, he tweeted, "I swear to God I can't understand the mentality of a grown man ripping on young kids over and over again for just trying their hardest. Kids!"
It's not the first time that the Based on a True Story singer has stepped up to the plate to defend one of his The Voice singers. During season two, when teenage hopeful Raelynn was the subject of some rude remarks from another blogger, Shelton spoke out publicly to support her.
Shelton's willingness to stand behind the singers on his team is a breath of fresh air in the often cynical entertainment business. It shows that he really does care about them, not just as reflections of him but for who they are as individuals, both on and off the show.
He also backs those words up with actions. As mentioned on-air this week, he keeps in touch with many of his former team members, including season one's Xenia and season three's Cassadee Pope, who performed on The Voice Tuesday night. Season two Team Blake member Gwen Sebastian is now one of Shelton's backup singers and has toured with him almost since her departure from the competition.
While he might be on the verge of winning his third straight Voice title, what's more impressive is that Shelton's principles are everything America should want from a reality-competition coach: one who treats their artists as artists, not just TV acts, and who is there for them even when the cameras aren't rolling. He understands that for these singers, it's not just entertainment, but it's them putting their real selves and career hopes out on display for a national audience.
He's not the only coach on The Voice who's emotionally invested in their performers. Last week, Adam Levine's emotional reaction to the loss of two artists set off a controversy, as well. Given that, it might not have been the best time for Shelton to speak out so vehemently, but it's understandable that he'd be protective of an artist he's worked with for months.
What do you think of Shelton's reaction? Do you believe reality-show judges should be more supportive of their artists? Should we hold critics and bloggers as responsible for their comments as we do celebrities? Sound off with your thoughts below.
(c)2013 Brittany Frederick/Big Red Chairs. Excerpts appear at Starpulse with permission. All rights reserved. No reproduction permitted. Visit my official website and follow me on Twitter at @bigredchairs.