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'The Voice' recap: Contestants duke it out in the boxing ring

May 11, 2011 |  9:20 am

Voice Boy, when “The Voice” sets up a battle of the bands, it takes the "battle" part seriously. On Tuesday night, Christina, Blake, Adam and Cee Lo literally put their singers in a boxing ring, challenging them to a duet that only one of them will survive.

And just in case you didn’t catch that metaphor, Christina’s team was more than happy to lay it all out for you again and again. Singing Beyonce’s “Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It)” together, Tarralyn Ramsey insisted that she was handling her performance “kinda like a fighter,” while Frenchie Davis dissed Tarralyn, claiming she “attacks” everything she sings. Plus, there was that scene where Frenchie sucker-punched Tarralyn in the face.

Only kidding about that last part. But we think Frenchie totally could’ve taken Tarralyn if things had come to a good old-fashioned hold-my-earrings brawl. Even Christina sensed it.  “Uh-oh, is there tension in the room right now?” she said before the battle. “Do I need to put on stripes and become a referee?”

Yep, none of the judges was stingy with the sports analogies. “I feel like I was watching ‘Rocky,’” said Blake of the standoff. “Frenchie’s like Apollo. She’s just beating the crap out of her, and then right at the last, [Tarralyn] hit that note and it’s like Rocky came in and cut it right at the last minute and knocked her out.” But no such luck for Tarralyn: Christina chose Frenchie. Maybe because she was scared of getting beat down if she didn’t.

Next up were Tyler Robinson and Patrick Thomas of Team Blake, two country boys who’d rather settle their disputes like gentlemen –- that is, by one dude trying to out-Mariah-Carey the other.  

"Just because you can do a lot of [vocal] runs and things doesn't mean you have to do them constantly," Blake advised Tyler while the two singers practiced Elvis’ “Burning Love.” But Tyler couldn’t help his melisma-loving self and brought it full force to his performance. Blake was somewhat impressed. “Where I’m from, the runs are a bad thing, but you made it work,” he said. Still, baritone-voiced Patrick won this round. No sports metaphors here, though Cee Lo did wear a totally insane track suit for the occasion.

When Team Adam arrived in the ring to sing Stevie Nicks’ “Leather and Lace,” an announcer introduced them as if they were boxing contenders, complete with nicknames and a booming "Let the battle begin!" In this corner, there was Tim Mahoney, or as the announcer called him, “The King of Almost, the Pride of Minneapolis,” which didn’t exactly make him sound like a killer. At least he sounded tougher than his competitor, “Second Chance Artist and Country Hopeful”  Casey Weston. Though Tim’s a seasoned vet and Casey’s a high school student just starting out, Adam chose Casey. "There's just something about Casey Weston," he said. We’ll bet that “something” is a skirt.

Finally, there was the battle royale that Adam called “by far the best duet of the night”: Cee Lo’s ladies Vicci Martinez and Niki Dawson, duking it out for rocker-grrrl cred on Pink’s “Perfect.” Blake was so astounded by both sides’ talent, he couldn’t not think about football.

“It’s like you’re watching a Super Bowl and it’s coming down to the last 20 seconds, and it’s tied!” he said.

Cee Lo eventually chose Vicci, but not before getting a lashing from Blake. "[Cee Lo is] going to reflect on his life and think of the worst mistakes he’s made along the way, and one of them will be pairing you two against each other," the country singer scolded.

But we disagree with Blake. When Cee Lo is old, he will look back on his life, and he’ll mainly regret wearing that track suit.

-- Melissa Maerz

Photo: Tyler Robinson, Carson Daly and Patrick Thomas in the ring. Credit: Lewis Jacobs / NBC

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