The Voice under attack

Their ratings have been stellar, but tomorrow night The Voice will need to lift its game  just to maintain its reputation.

The last week saw its toughest ride yet. Dumping singer Carmen Smith has attracted plenty of comment, including questions from industry observers, that jeopardise the show’s positive tone.

Colin Vickery at the Herald Sun said he didn’t understand why she had been dumped:
“Channel Nine and the makers of The Voice are punishing a singer because she is successful. And I thought The Voice was meant to be about encouragement and celebrating great singing. Channel Nine needs to reverse this silly and unfair decision,” he wrote.

Michael Idato at the Sydney Morning Herald  said: “….audiences are often confronted by these peculiar decisions, particularly in the tricky, sneaky world of reality TV. And how they respond is equally unpredictable. The transformative power of television is formed in a very delicate crucible. TV shows with the astonishing and immense success of The Voice particularly so. And decisions which dissolve that ratings-magnetic magic should not be lightly undertaken lest the audience realise that this isn’t alchemy, but just another manipulative talent show.

It will be interesting to hear how this is all explained in the show’s storyline on Monday.

Then there was also online feedback last week that the judges didn’t give enough constructive criticism to singers who under-performed. It was a well-produced show, but it was a bit of a love-in.

Andrew Mercado wrote:
“Hilariously overwrought, yes. Pitch perfect and on key, um, no. Song choices were horrible and wardrobe choices woeful. Many singers were, understandably, quite nervous, and dodgy audio did them no favours. Yet not one judge said a bad word about anyone or anything. In trying to be so nice, The Voice painted itself into a fence-sitting corner once occupied by Marcia Hines on Australian Idol.

Some bloggers even felt Seal was showing contestants too much love. Delta has also copped plenty so far…

And lastly we come to host Darren McMullen, who let fly with loose cannon remarks on Mornings the week before.

The Voice is so far in front it can afford to take a hit and still attract a glorious set of numbers.

Tall poppy so soon? Perhaps. But it will be interesting to see if the honeymoon period is already over.


  1. Call me cynical but is it just coincidence that a few weeks into any realty program a controversy rears it’s ugly head?

    As the head of Nine said, bad news sells………….

  2. Saw a ‘highlights’ package on 9 while waiting for another show to come on and they were all awful. Especially the girl who murdered the Jewel song. She ought to be ashamed of herself.

  3. I think the show still has a lot of goodwill, but the judges must not get swept away by the hype.
    They must listen to the pitch and not spend their time singing, dancing or looking at the audience.
    Very few, if any of the vocal performances last week, deserved standing ovations.
    Maybe the judges need earphones?

  4. I recorded the show & watched it last night. I ended up fast forwarding through most of the show. I agree that the song choices and performances were very average, but whoever is responsible for the wardrobe choices should be sacked.
    The young blonde kid who sang the One Direction song looked like a giant pink marshmallow, and the guy who sang the Beatles song looked like a chauffeur!
    My apologies for not remembering their names, but the whole show left me feeling very blah.

  5. I’m not following The Voice, but I read about it and I must say for a show that is open to professionals, the decision to dump Carmen Smith is baffling. Many of the singers have had professional success prior to being on the show, so I don’t understand why she was singled out. A very strange decision. I doubt whether the show will drop by much, although the UK version has gone backwards, ratings wise, since the blind auditions finished.

  6. @Bella: Totally agree about Seal and Emma. I found Seal’s reaction to her initial audition quite over the top. He was all “You’re the best singer I have ever heard in my entire life!” even though there had been arguably much better singers til that point. I personally thought she was pretty ordinary. Her battle round performance was better but her most recent performance was kinda bad. Aretha Franklin is definitely out of her range, yet Seal thought it was awesome. Just my opinion though.

  7. I won’t be watching on Monday. I will just record and watch the performances and who is eliminated. The thing the X Factor has over The Voice is a good set of judges who is not fearful in criticising when the talent is bad. Simon Cowell said it all this week.

    The production values are great for The Voice but why the hell do they still have buzzers on their chairs. International versions of The Voice got rid of the buzzers after the blind auditions but Nine decided it was good to get help from mentors in choosing who goes through and then last week those buzzers were just a distraction. The contestants are the ones i feel sorry for here. Nine are treating them like crap and getting rid of Carmen proved that. How come Delta’s backup singer can be with Delta and yet Carmen gets booted for singing as a backup singer on Guy Sebastian’s album. I bet if it were someone not associated to Seven it would have been different. For me after this week the show has lost all credibility. Yes they blatantly deny Joel wasn’t drunk but it was pretty damn obvious he had taken something because he was just all over the place.

  8. It will be interesting to see how the format works on Monday. they will have all the content of last Monday plus an elimination and i assume some kind of justification package about what happened to carmen. if it ran for 135mins last time it would have to be pushing over 2.5hours this week. what does that mean for tricky business?

  9. I still love The Voice! (even though they’ve made some bad decisions in the past week).

    I agree that Carmen broke the rules and they had a good reason to dump her, but in the interest of keeping the fans happy, they shouldn’t have done that.

    The show even in its live state is so well produced and looks amazing – without the ‘live’ watermark, you’d never know.

  10. I totally agree. I wasn’t left amazed with last weeks show. I did like Rachael, but I love that song. Everything else was just meh.

    Seal and his obsession with Emma Louise is really strange. The way he was standing during her song.

  11. I for one thought the live show was a real let down. There were a couple of good singers, the rest were average at best.

    And they do nothing to jazz the performance up, like in xfactor. It really is all about the voice, and their voices were not all that great!!

  12. It will be interesting to see how it goes. After the blind auditions in the UK version their ratings dropped by over 2 million. Lets jut hope they get the sound and songs right otherwise I wont bother.

  13. daveinprogress

    They opened the door to professional singers – some of whom had already achieved record deals and releases – Mahalia, Shauna, and others such as Michelle from Dancing with the Stars, Glen and Matt. the chick from Hairspray etc who have had major roles with tours or sessions with big names – so it seems a little hypocritical to eject Carmen. Yeah it was a bit of a love in – but i have to say the standard was pretty high for a stage of the comp that is still not the final 12 or whatever they get down to. Maybe they are trying to be the point of difference to the often catty X Factor, with its strategic voting from the judges and loaded comments. Nice is ok too – not much tension, but it is all about the voice!

  14. Ha! Love the Marcia Hines throwback. So true..

    And Delta is a reason why stopped watching. Is there something wrong with her normal speaking voice? She sounds as if she needs to constantly clear her throat??

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