How did TV viewers get by without The Masked Singer for two weeks? Why did America have to suffer in this capacity? Major League Baseball is your answer. And since that particular pastime pre-empted Fox’s Nick Cannon-hosted one, we’re blessed with two — TWO! — episodes sandwiched back-to-back this week. It’s truly a magnificent time to be alive.
As per usual, A-plus-list panelists Robin Thicke, Jenny McCarthy Wahlberg, Ken Jeong and Nicole Scherzinger are here to guide us through the guessing game with their expertise. And away we go.
The onetime boy band member hints are strong with Rottweiler this time around, as he mentions a musical theater beginning and references “I Want It That Way.” For his performance, the dog lends his high tenor to OneRepublic’s semi-hit “Love Runs Out,” which perks up the panel.
“When you sing, it doesn’t even sound real to me – it sounds like a record,” proclaims Nicole. The gang is torn, with Robin wondering if Rottweiler is Backstreet Boys member Brian Littrell while Ken ponders if it could be Train’s Pat Monahan. Robin refers to Ken as “Dr. Kennel” and it’s so dumb it’s kind of funny. You know, kind of like this show? Moving on.
Before Ladybug hits the stage, Joey Fatone (aka The Rabbit from last season) materializes behind the panelists for no reason. Then, just like that, he’s gone. Wack-a-doodle.
Ladybug’s clues include a Best Host trophy and a vague reference to the 2004 Ashlee Simpson hit “Pieces Of Me.” Her song choice this evening is Lizzo’s “Juice,” which she dishes out coolly and confidently.
Jenny calls her the Lady Gaga of ladybugs and thinks the masked insect is actually Paris Jackson. Ken believes it’s Lindsay Lohan. Clearly Ken hasn’t paid attention to the fact that, for the past two weeks months, LiLo was Down Under serving as a panelist on, um, The Masked Singer Australia.
Anyway, Ladybug motions for Ken to kiss her ass, and it’s the best idea I’ve heard from this show to-date.
I keep forgetting there’s literally a contestant dressed as a Christmas tree. Super.
Tree throws dishes out some cooking hints and drops the titles of classic holiday movies like Home Alone and Elf before launching into Aretha Franklin’s “Think.” One has to admit, Tree’s got some pipes.
Ken latches onto the Elf reference and suggests Tree could be actor and She & Him singer Zooey Deschanel. Nicole throws out a curveball and says it might be Zooey’s Elf co-star Amy Sedaris, who has also penned books on cooking and crafts. The plot thickens.
Sherri Shepherd was a favorite guess amongst the panelists in Season 1, and they’re not letting go of that one. Penguin’s vocals are flat-out mediocre, and to top if all off, she goes with Meghan Trainor’s “All About That Bass” tonight.
Jenny, in particular, thinks Penguin is former View co-host Sherri Shepherd. Robin opts for Wanda Sykes and Nicole guesses another face from The View’s past, Star Jones. Time will tell.
Moving along, Flower gloats in her clues package that she’s never taken a singing lesson in her life. She concludes that she simply must just have “that X factor” and holds up a $13 price tag.
Flower belts out Sia’s “Cheap Thrills” with such soul that the panelists are on their feet by the end. Nicole compliments the floral talent on her “stratospheric range.” Ken maintains that “it’s freakin’ Björk” under the disguise. Nicole wonders if it’s Shirley Bassey.
Why are they all overlooking the obvious: Patti LaBelle?
The first episode of the night winds down with Fox stating that he used to be bullied for his bark but he’s now confident in his true voice. He soars through Panic! At the Disco’s “Hey Look Ma, I Made It” vocally, and serves up some solid dance moves while doing so.
Robin notes this is the first time any contestant has done an official dance break on The Masked Singer. Robin’s guess is Backstreet Boys member AJ McLean. Ken goes with Jamie Foxx, because Ken is Ken. And Nicole suggests Fox might be Ne-Yo.
Eliminated: Penguin is ultimately the one who’s sunk after the studio audience and panelists vote. As is often the case, Jenny nailed it: It’s Sherri Shepherd under all that black and white.
“Jenny knows me so well,” Sherri gushes on stage. “We’ve been through two marriages and divorces together. We’ve walked around naked in front of each other.”
That’s specific. And with that, it’s on to the next episode.
“Whether it’s a cozy den in Memphis or a bungalow in Bel-Air,” Black Widow states that she can make herself at home in any nook or cranny. The words “scrubs” and “misdemeanor” then appear on banners hanging in the spider’s clues package. She also apparently broke her arm last week. Don’t worry, though — she’s got seven others to work with.
Black Widow gives Cher’s late-‘90s smash “Believe” a hearty go, and Ken compliments her “crouch game.” Robin runs with a previous episode’s clue about the contestant being a child actor, and sticks with Raven-Symone as his guess. Ken, who is a buffoon, thinks it’s Miranda Lambert.
By the way, Anthony Anderson has joined this episode as a guest panelist. That’s fun.
We could talk about Thingamajig’s gummy worms and “This Is How We Do it” clues, or his gold-star performance of The Temptations’ “Ain’t Too Proud to Beg.” But all anyone takes away from this segment is that the six-foot-something-or-other contestant and Nicole have some major mutual flirting going on. Like, straight up “get a room and go make some thingamababies” flirting.
Nicole says, “I’m in love with your voice,” at the top of her critique, but ends things by stating, “That’s my future husband.”
The other panelists flapped their gums, too, but let’s just keep trucking here.
Last time we saw Butterfly, she got zapped on stage during a rehearsal mishap. She explains that, after that, all of her insecurities about performing resurfaced. Gosh. How terrible. Anyway, she also mentions “bleeding love,” which feels like a move to keep leading Robin astray, since he’s convinced Butterfly is Leona Lewis. I’m actually going with Michelle Williams, of the Destiny’s Child variety. Butterfly does it up with Norah Jones’ “Don’t Know Why” and I’m even more convinced. No one was a bigger fan of her 2008 pop-dance jam “We Break The Dawn,” and I’d know that voice anywhere.
Jenny is also on the Michelle jag, while Ken pulls the Ken-like theory out of his butt that Butterfly might just be Norah Jones herself.
With his put-on sophisticated British accent, Leopard gives a few clues while the word “pose” appears on a mock newspaper. This sends the Billy Porter bells ringing, but who knows, kids. Who knows.
Leopard gives a spirited performance of Katy Perry staple “Teenage Dream” that gets a standing ovation from the audience and the panelists. Nicole is on the "Pose" hint like ants on a picnic. Ken the court jester thinks the spotted contestant is “clearly Bobby Brown.”
Meanwhile, Anthony Anderson wonders, “Why does the Leopard sound like Eartha Kitt in Boomerang?"
This thing comes to a close with Flamingo, who you may recall broke Jenny’s botox with her last performance. This time around the pink-clad songbird says she’s “anything but basic” and does the Greatest Showman ballad “Never Enough” a fair amount of justice.
Jenny calls it the “best performance, by far, I think of the show yet.” Robin is certain Flamingo is American Idol Season 3 winner Fantasia. And since the feathered talent produces a NAACP Image Award as her “revealing item” clue, Robin just might be right. (Fantasia has won three.)
Eliminated: I’m a bit surprised to see Black Widow get squashed by the votes. Robin was correct all along in guessing that it’s Raven-Symoné. He had the advantage, we find out, of writing a song for one of Raven’s albums.