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Wow. Yes, 24 singers were definitely far too many for the first set of live rounds. And, sadly, not many stood out quality-wise. There are many competent singers here, but they were not well served by their song choices. At least they got rid of two from each team this first time out and thinned the ranks. And I liked the “audience saves three, coach saves one” aspect to these eliminations; it seemed a good compromise.

Note: I abhor results shows of all kinds and all assessments below are based on the live performances.

Favorite performance: Juliet Simms, “Roxanne” (Team Cee Lo). I’m as shocked as you are, believe me. But, hey, Dia Frampton wasn’t on my radar either after the Battle Rounds last year.

Craziest performance: Erin Martin, “Walk Like an Egyptian” (Team Cee Lo). Erin pretty much has a lock on this category. What will we do without her?

Least interesting “winning” performance: Jordis Unga, “Alone” (Team Blake). There was a lot of cliché up on that stage this round, but this was perhaps the most egregious example.

Favorite song choice: Juliet Simms, “Roxanne” (Team Cee Lo). A great choice because it’s well known, but not completely overdone like, for example, “Alone.”

Worst song choice: Jermaine Paul, “Livin’ on a Prayer” (Team Blake). WTF? This made no sense. It didn’t fit the singer or showcase his skills. Overall Blake really made horrific song choices for his team.

Oddest song choice that actually worked: James Massone, “Don’t Know Why” (Team Cee Lo). Massone is not a great singer by any means, but he is adorable and this choice was inspired.

Worst arrangement: Jesse Campbell, “What a Wonderful World” (Team Christina). This almost made me hate Jesse. Don’t mess with Satchmo.

Most egregious non-save: Naia Kete (Team Blake). “Turning Tables” wasn’t her best effort, but she was Blake’s most original sound. I don’t know why he saved Jordis over his two most interesting singers.

Person I’m most rooting for after a dismal live performance: Pip (Team Adam). I don’t know what that was but let’s never speak of it again.

(Still) Most adorable: James Massone (Team Cee Lo)

(Still) Most overrated: Mathai (Team Adam). If she could enunciate, maybe I could stand her.

Top four I’m rooting for: Chris Mann (Team Christina), Lindsey Pavao (Team Christina), Jamar Rogers (Team Cee Lo), Juliet Simms (Team Cee Lo)

Strongest team: Team Christina (Chris Mann, Jesse Campbell, Lindsey Pavao, Ashley De La Rosa). And let’s just take a moment to thank the powers-that-be for Christina’s new stylist.

Weakest team (tie): Team Adam (Tony Lucca, Pip, Katrina Parker, Mathai) and Team Blake (RaeLynn, Jordis Unga, Jermaine Paul, Erin Willett)

Assuming the final four contains one from each team, I now think it will be Mathai, RaeLynn, Jamar Rogers, and Jesse Campbell.

Who do you think will be in the final four? Who would you most like to see there?

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