With only five contestants left ahead of next week’s The Masked Singer season finale, we’re rockin’ and rollin’ now. Two of these disguised celebs are getting the boot on tonight’s (December 11) semi-final round, which will leave three standing to compete for the Golden Mask. Panelist Ken Jeong is wearing an ugly Christmas sweater, so this must all be serious.
Gone, it seems, are the guest panelists, as it’s only Robin Thicke, Jenny McCarthy Wahlberg, Nicole Scherzinger and Ken on critiquing duty this evening. Let’s hop right into it.
A few new clues about Fox are given, including the name Richard handwritten on paper and his statement that he’s “not to be slept on as a vocalist.” The bushy-tailed contestant whips the audience into the holiday spirit with a rousing rendition of Donny Hathaway’s “This Christmas.” He then “gifts” the panelists with one more clue, tied to Joey Fatone’s character in Season 1: “My buddy Rabbit came by the foxhole and said I would have just as good a time as he did.”
Robin Thicke is adamant that Fox is actor/comedian Wayne Brady, while Nicole guesses it’s Tyrese under all the faux fur. Time will tell, kids.
I wasn’t entirely convinced when it came to the fan theory of Rottweiler being American Idol alum Chris Daughtry, but tonight is definitely warming me to the idea. Rottweiler belts out The Killers’ “Mr. Brightside,” which betrays the contestant’s rock-vocal tone in a way that hasn’t happened before this season. It winds up being one of the finest performances in Masked Singer-dom.
Jenny is awestruck by the passion in the dog’s voice and wonders if he’s really current Journey frontman Arnel Pineda. Nicole and Robin are unified in thinking it’s Emmy winner Darren Criss.
This season’s fuzzy green favorite admits that it’s been a tough year with a lot of obstacles and adversity. Get in line, kid. He then turns out a reggae-pop rendition of Bing Crosby chestnut “Winter Wonderland” that’s every bit of holiday showbiz schmaltz you could ask for.
Thingamajig’s holiday gift for the panelist is a hat and a whip, which, if we take into consideration the season-long flirty narrative between he and Nicole, takes that whole thing to another level. “While I am a massive movie buff, this clue requires a bit of digging,” Thingamajig states. Hmmm.
Ken considers the Indiana Jones-eque nature of this new clue and pulls Indiana Pacers basketball player Victor Oladipo out of his butt as a guess.
Pink-feathered Flamingo mentions that she loved singing in a church choir while growing up. She gives a stunning performance of Jeff Buckley’s “Hallelujah” that causes Robin to say, “That was the first chill that went up and down my spine this season.”
For her gift, a globe is wheeled out. “I was baptized in Israel,” reveals Flamingo. Jenny sticks with her assumption that the costumed singer is Adrienne Bailon, and Nicole points out that Adrienne’s husband is named Israel.
[Leopard, “Big Spender”: ]
Fancy Leopard notes in his clues package that he initially came to The Masked Singer so his cubs would think he’s cool. He adds that he starred in a Nativity play when he was 11 years old. This is followed by a flamboyant cover of Sweet Charity show tune “Big Spender.”
Leopard’s gift to the panel is a blueprint drawing of the contestant’s “dream home” with host Nick Cannon. Ken states he knows “exactly who this is,” and throws out Jeff Goldblum. “Kenneth, if you were any colder, you would be in Alaska, darling,” quips Leopard.
Eliminated: It had to happen someday, and that day just happens to be at the tail-end of Season 2: Ken Jeong guessed correctly that Thingamajig is Victor Oladipo. Based on the other panelists’ faces, I’m not alone in pointing out this has to be the most random “win” yet for any of the panelists.
As mentioned at the top of episode, a second contestant must get ye olde boot out the door. And that masked performer is Leopard, who Nicole and Robin guessed correctly is Seal. Like with Patti LaBelle a few weeks back, I’m astounded he even bothered to show up on this thing. But as Seal famously crooned nearly 30 years ago, we’re never gonna survive unless we get a little crazy.