Sunday, August 15, 2010

Thoughts on “The Voice 2” – Episode 14

First, I have to ask – did TVB cut out a lot of the commentary? Because some of the stuff I saw in the preview did not actually happen – like some of the comments that the judges made during the preview didn’t even air….for example, Hanjin’s comments from the preview about how he felt that someone was “going against the band” and also the part where he asked why one of the contestants wouldn’t take the judges’ opinion to heart (regarding someone singing in a higher pitch rather than lower)…I was actually scratching my head after the show and was like…WTH??? That’s one of the biggest things I hate about watching TVB’s variety shows on TV overseas – they cut out A LOT of stuff – this isn’t the first time….they’ve done this on almost every single variety show that they’ve aired here in the U.S….that’s why I don’t even bother watching some of the shows (like the anniversary gala and other specials) on TV, since it’s edited so badly that the show ends up not making sense.

Anyway, back to the actual performances – this episode was actually a continuation of last week’s “Classic TV Themesongs” edition, so of course, I was waiting to see what was going to happen.

Overall, I must say that I was disappointed with this episode again because even though it was one of the themes that I liked (classic TV theme songs) and I knew every single song, the judging sort of sucked….I didn’t understand why certain judges gave the scores that they did…especially the scores for Vivian.

Since I was really paying attention to this episode, I decided that this time around, I would do the review a little differently and actually comment on each of the 6 contestants who performed instead of just a few of them. So here goes…

Sheldon – sang the themesong from “Triumph in the Skies” (originally sung by Eason Chan)
>> His performance was actually ok, in my opinion. True, there was not enough emotion to the singing and he did sing some of the lyrics wrong (he needs to continue working on his Chinese), but overall, his performance was very pleasing to the ears. Plus he really started getting better near the end of the performance (probably because he was less nervous and felt more comfortable) – in fact, I was actually starting to enjoy the performance near the end…too bad it wasn’t consistent though (meaning he was a bit unsteady in the beginning and middle parts). The other thing I like about Sheldon though is his positive attitude – he comes across as very carefree and happy-go-lucky and seems to be the only one (I feel at least) from V2 who does not give off the impression of being arrogant and the “I’ll do as I please” feeling.

Penny – sang the theme song from “A House is Not a Home” (originally sung by Roman Tam)
>> Ok, I have to admit that I was quite disappointed with Penny’s performance. After being ‘blown away’ by his “The Challenger” performance with Mimi Lo, I actually expected more from him. But this performance was very shaky and he sang it WAY TOO HIGH!!!! I was wondering throughout his entire performance why the heck he chose to sing the song so high – especially since the original singer Roman Tam had a famously beautiful deep voice that was extremely powerful (hence the reason why he was able to sing so many classic, beautifully written, powerful songs). Also, because Penny sang higher than usual, his pitch and tone were really off and even borderline shaky at certain points – you could actually tell that he was out of his comfort level…

Deep – sang the subtheme song from the Taiwan series “Romance in the Rain” (originally sung by Vicki Zhao and Leo Ku – both have their own versions of the song)
>> I actually liked Deep’s performance the best (well, I guess it helps that I love this series and am very familiar with all the songs in it as well). Her performance was very comfortable and sounded very nice -- I especially liked how she had a smile on her face the entire time, which is perfect because it helped her express the song better and it fit exactly with the ‘atmosphere’ of the song. (Though I must say as a sidenote that I like Vicki Zhao’s version better because you can actually feel the “happiness” and “sweetness” to the song when she sings it). Anyway, I also actually agree with the judges (for once…lol) in terms of Deep’s performance – basically that Deep did a good job overall, though in terms of skill and other technical stuff (like singing certain parts with more power and strength rather than just using a loud voice), she could have done better.

Shadow –sang the theme song from “Beauty of the Game” (originally sung by Denise Ho)
>> I didn’t like Shadow’s performance at all – her pitch and tone were off at certain places and the overall ‘feel’ of the song was a bit weird….I also felt like she was trying too hard not to ‘yell and scream’ (since of course it would be inappropriate to ‘scream’ like a maniac while singing a slow song). My opinion is that she is absolutely not cut out for slow songs at all – her performance just didn’t sound natural. This performance proves my point that she can’t sing and has been covering up her lack of singing skill with crazy yelling and screaming (of course, this means that I disagree with Anthony Lun’s comment about her actually knowing how to sing because that didn’t come across to me at all).

I also have a huge problem with the scoring of Shadow’s performance – she actually received the lowest score out of this batch of contestants (the 6 who performed this week), but it was still enough to keep her out of the “elimination zone” (she got a 75.4 – the “passing” score is 75). I noticed that out of the 5 judges, 4 of them gave her a score in the low 70s (less than 75), yet one of them gave her a score of 79…I am pretty sure that the 79 score is what put her over the “passing” mark and therefore put her in the “safe” zone. I am very interested to know who that 1 judge is that gave her a high mark (I think I know, but since I’m not 100% sure, don’t want to unfairly accuse).

Vivian – sang the theme song from “Golden Faith” (originally sung by Gallen Lo)
>>OMG, I hated her performance (even more than I hated Shadow’s performance) – her voice is WAY TOO HIGH, her pitch was very unsteady, and she was off-key in quite a few places. Plus she has a bit of a ‘slur’ when she talks/sings, so at some parts, I couldn’t understand what she was singing (or saying either). Also, since her voice is SO high-pitched, it’s actually hard for her to carry certain notes, so some parts of the song feel very ‘abrupt’ – and of course, as usual, her voice always sounds like it is on the verge of cracking. And as one of the judges said, she sounded more like she was ‘reading’ the lyrics more than ‘singing’ them, so to me, there wasn’t much emotion in the song at all (though Sammy appears to love her – but he’s only the host and part of his job is to be neutral / positive, so can’t blame him for praising everyone – even if they suck). Btw, her singing still gives me the goosebumps!

Again, I have a huge problem with the scoring….one of the judges (I believe it was Anthony) actually said that she only sang 1 line beautifully and the rest of it was so-so (which any normal person would interpret as ‘she needs work’…) – yet, she got a really high score (81.2, which is quite high, considering the highest score with both eps combined was around 84 and elimination was at 75 – plus most of the others got scores in the high 70s or low 80s). Ok, so if the judges are telling her that her performance wasn’t quite up to par (which, based on some of the other comments, that was the impression I got), then why did they give her such high scores (AGAIN)??!!!!??!!! They are obviously favoring her again….

Oh, one more thing…. STOP THE CRYING ALREADY!!!! It’s like, every single time Vivian performs, she either cries or looks like she is on the verge of tears….can’t stand it – very annoying…

Brian – sang the subtheme song from “Healing Hands” (originally sung by William So)
>> I actually thought Brian’s rendition wasn’t too bad – true, it wasn’t the best, but it was a lot better than a lot of the other contestants. I actually agree with Hanjin when he said that this could very well be Brian’s ‘representative work’ to date – he was pretty steady with his performance and showed emotion when he sang (though of course it can’t compare to the original version by William So, who has a very awesome, powerful voice).

I was surprised that Brian’s score was low (though definitely not the lowest) – I definitely feel that he should have gotten higher than Vivian because his overall performance was better. And the judges’ comments were pretty positive with regard to his performance (except for the comment about his breathing), so I don’t understand the low score at all….


In terms of who ended up getting eliminated after all was said and done, of course it was Kenson, since he was the only contestant who fell into the ‘elimination zone’ (scored lower than 75 points).

I’m actually quite disappointed that Kenson got eliminated over Vivian and Shadow -- not that I like Kenson or anything, but at least his performance was way better than the 2 ladies in terms of overall effectiveness and consistency. And I must admit that he has the most “stage presence” among all of the contestants – meaning he moved his body and hands and actually had facial expression – which we all know is important for a singer to have. In fact, when he sang the “Witness to a Prosecution” themesong (originally sung by Eason Chan) in last week’s episode as well as when he sang it today after he was eliminated, I could actually feel some of that Eason-type jumpy personality thing ….which means that the song actually worked well and fit him.

I would have preferred that none of the contestants fell into the ‘elimination zone’ because that meant that the judges would have to pick someone to eliminate from those who got low scores (which means of course that there was a huge chance of Shadow being eliminated, since she had the 2nd lowest score)…however, as I said earlier, her score was skewed, so she just barely made it into ‘safe’ territory.

Overall, I definitely did not enjoy this episode as much as I did the previous one – for obvious reasons. I think I'll just leave it at that...


  1. Regarding your comment about Vivian - what do you expect her to do IF not cry? Come on now. IF she can't sing OR impress, OF COURSE she has to resort to blackmailing them with her tears, making them pity her SO she could get in. They would look bad by making her cry again by the time of elimination. (LOL...and you thought I was defending her, eh?)

    Either Shadow and Vivian got real connections OR something. 'Cause by the way the show's going, I wouldn't be surprise IF one of 'em win. Maybe with Vivian's crying, she might win. (Since the judges couldn't be the 'big bad guys' for making her cry AND the audience yelling at them for making the 'poor girl' cry.

    Okay, I'll stop before someone yells at me.

  2. Oh yeah, I read your article regarding how Teresa's returning. So maybe she might be able to get rid of Shadow and Vivian? Or would it be too late?

  3. Actually, I've been active on the Voice thread in AF and someone mentioned that both Vivian and Shadow will be eliminated in the next few episodes -- if that'e true, then yay!!! They've tortured us long enough....

    Even if they get eliminated, I still think they have connections or else they would not have lasted this long. Plus, as I posted somewhere earlier, it doesn't matter how bad they do because TVB is going to promote them anyway -- just look at the contestants from V1...almost all of them -- even the ones who were eliminated early on -- are being promoted (exception for the mainland China ones) or given chances to do albums, record songs, etc. etc. See, that's the problem -- by doing this, TVB is sending a message that winning the competition isn't important -- that's probably why the V2 contestants are so damn arrogant and most aren't putting much effort into their performances!

    Regarding Vivian's "crying" and supposedly "being sick"....someone in AF said it best when he/she drew the comparison to the Queen of Music herself, Anita Mui -- I mean, come on -- she was battling cancer back in 2003 and was completely drained from all the therapy, yet she was able to pull off her multiple show "last concert" without a hitch about a month before she died!!! Now THAT's professionalism...compared with these true artists, "newbies" such as Vivan should just quit her damn whining and just leave if he can't handle it!!!!

    Btw, not sure if they will be eliminated in Teresa's episode, but sure am glad to see her back as judge!!