The Voice's new rule change has made a huge difference in the competition. On Tuesday night, one coach was knocked entirely out of contention for the Season 3 title, as the eliminated artists spoke with Big Red Chairs to give their parting thoughts.
Team Christina's Dez Duron and Team Cee Lo's Cody Belew were sent home Tuesday, leaving coach Christina Aguilera without an artist in the competition and ending her hopes of winning Season 3. It continues a disappointing streak for Aguilera, whose finalist Chris Mann came in fourth in Season 2 - although he has gone on to achieve considerable commercial success after the show, with the release of his album Roads, his EP Home for Christmas, and a spot in NBC's Christmas in Rockefeller Center special airing tomorrow night.
Aguilera wasn't dismayed by the results. "I think the real winner tonight is Dez," she said, "because he was able to now jump start his career, not be a cover song artist at this point, and he's already won so many hearts in America that I have no worries at all with where he's going to go from here."
What does she plan to do for the rest of Season 3? "I will want to be entertained, and I'll want to be impressed, just taking in the rest of the competition," she continued. "I happen to have really been enjoying Cassadee Pope. She's been kind of a surprise to me, actually, throughout. I might pop on over to Team Blake for some quick support."
For his part, Dez had no regrets about his final performance on The Voice. "I think Christina picked a great song. I love the song. I think we put together a fun cool performance and I left my heart on the stage," he said. "I don't ever regret anything I do out there when I put my whole heart into it."
He had plenty of praise for his coach, saying that his favorite part of the experience was "Every time I got to hang out with Christina and learn from her, perform with her, listen to her new album, all those times."
As for his future plans, fans can rest assured you haven't seen the last of Dez, who explained that "I just want to make music that they love and I think they will love it."
You can keep up with Dez on Twitter (@DezDuron).
His fellow eliminee Cody Belew was similarly looking forward rather than backward. "There's so much left for me to do. Now it's up to me to turn this into something tangible," he said.
"I expected to make the walk wearing the crown and the sash and carrying the trophy, but it's OK that it happened now," he continued. "I really got to go out on a high note and know that my body of work on this show was consistently good and that I put on a show every single time. For me, at least, that's a big part of the artist that I am and now I can say it is going to work."
To his fans, he added, "Please don't think that this is a tragedy. It's because of you that we've gone this far and I think that we've got the makings of a great career. I say 'we' because I can't do it without you. I haven't done it without you."
As for Cody's coach, Cee Lo Green, he has an idea for what kind of sendoff he would like when he temporarily exits The Voice in just a few weeks. "For Trevin and Nicholas to win Season 3, would really be a way to say, 'See you later, Cee Lo Green. You're one hell of a guy.'"
In addition to the results, there were three performances by the Top 8. Amanda Brown and Trevin Hunte joined to open the show with Lady Gaga's 'Marry The Night,' while Terry McDermott, Cody, Melanie Martinez, and Nicholas David performed 'Rhythm of Love' and Cassadee Pope and Dez sung Rihanna and Jay-Z's 'Hate That I Love You.' You can view Cassadee and Dez's song in the media player attached to this article.
Kermit the Frog joined Cee Lo on a rendition of 'It's Not Easy Being Green' while other Muppets, including Fozzie Bear and Animal, looked on. Clips of Cee Lo reuniting with many past and current members of his team, as well as the Muppets, for a recent Las Vegas performance were shown, as was footage of the Top 8 visiting Carson Daly's radio show.
But the real story of the evening was the elimination of Team Christina, which host and producer Daly summed up best: "We sort of did it this way on purpose. At some point, we're going to produce the best Top 10 out there. We know that," he explained. "If coaches end up not having a pony at the end in the race, so be it. It's okay. It's not about the coaches anymore. It's about the pursuit of these people's dreams of making it in music."
The Voice continues next Monday at 8 PM ET/PT on NBC, followed by Blake Shelton's Not So Family Christmas at 10 PM ET/PT.
(c)2012 Brittany Frederick/Big Red Chairs. Appears at Examiner with permission. All rights reserved. No reproduction permitted.