The Voice Australia: What is it really, after the chairs have spun?

A look back at the season in the lead up to the grand final.

As the first season of the THE VOICE AUSTRALIA draws to a close I find myself asking, is this reality show really all that special?
I remember tuning in for the first episode two months ago – along with over 2 million other Australian viewers – wondering what this new reality show with the spinning chairs was all about. The year of Delta bashing. At first it was about Delta Goodrem. I saw the funny side to her inability to articulate her thoughts, her desperate pleas to contestants to join her team, and her amazing dance moves. Need an example?

But then we started to discover yet another array of talented artists from across the country. The show quickly turned into the hottest topic at the water cooler. The fancy chairs spinning, the high profile judges, The Voice was exciting and thrilling and filled with brilliant and talented potential artists. It ticked all the boxes.

But what was the show after the chairs stopped spinning? Sure the battle rounds were entertaining enough but once we moved into the competition stage, what fun was there to be had?

The judges seemed to lose their ability to criticise, they only became passive aggressive toward each other. Also I feel like we are led to believe, as the audience, that we have a say in getting our favourite artist on the show to the grand final, we don’t. Monday’s episode was proof, the judges got to choose their final contestant to go through to the grand final, which was a privilege the judges were given every week of the contest. I’m not saying the general public have a better eye for talent than the judges, but I don’t see the point of the audience being invited to vote/download other than $$$. If a judge has chosen his favourite from the beginning, the others don’t stand a chance (I’m looking at you Seal and Delta even with those ridiculous glasses you don’t need).

This may just sound like a bitter rant from a teenage girl whose favourite didn’t make it through. I’m actually 21 and I don’t vote, so I can’t hate the system I’m not a part of. What I do feel though is The X Factor has a smarter approach in their contest format. The judges vote on who to eliminate till half way through the competition before the audience is allowed to choose. From that point the people who are voting are the people who I believe would be the most likely customers, ones that would actually purchase the winners album at the conclusion of the season; so let them choose I say! I would rather not be given the illusion that the general public’s vote counts for something other than $$ until you reach the finale in The Voice.

That being said the artists who don’t make it through have definitely been given the platform to launch their careers from here. If they are smart about it, they will take Matt Corby or Lisa Mitchell approach where they hide away for a while, develop themselves, then return with a truly unique sound.

My overall problem with this show is once the ‘Auditions’ and ‘Battle Rounds’ are completed it does just enter the generic form of any other singing competition with less audience participation. I feel the shows bravado alludes to more going on then there actually is.

As the first season wraps up this coming Sunday June 17th, I’m sure everyone will tune in to see Karise Eden crowned victorious for the first season of The Voice Australia. (That’s my prediction anyway)

Although there’s been a lot of dissing, I admit I did get swept up in the commotion at one point and I’ll leave you with my favourite performance from this season.

Words by Daniel Morrison.

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