On Monday (Sept. 23), America’s favorite singing competition (sorry, “American Idol”) returns for another season of blind auditions, big red chairs and bromances. Zap2It had the privilege of viewing the premiere in advance, and, being the givers we are, we just have to fill you in on the five things worth getting excited about.
1. The original quartet is back and quite possibly better than ever. The time away did Aguilera and Green good — they’ve returned with a renewed energy and genuinely seem as if they want to be there. On the flip side, coach mainstays Levine and Blake Shelton seem happy to be reunited with their old compatriots. As much as replacement coaches Shakira and Usher were a welcome shake-up last season, the chemistry between these four is palpable and irreplaceable.
2. It would be wise to keep a box of tissues at your side while watching. A handful of the contestants’ backstories are surprisingly emotional without being over-produced and over-wrought. They’re just honest and touching. Don’t be surprised if you shed a tear at least once.
3. The bromance is alive and well. Shelton may have bonded with Usher last season, threatening America’s favorite friendship, but the three-time “Voice” champ and Levine are still going strong at the onset of Season 5. Look for their emotional connection to overshadow one contestant’s team-selecting deliberations, prompting the amused auditionee to comment, “This is awkward.” Awkward? Maybe. Adorable? Definitely.
4. For a man who’s posed nude and performs in front of millions, you’d think Levine is impossible to embarrass. Look for one contestant’s flirtatious banter with the Maroon 5 front man to make him blush harder that you ever expected.
5. Lastly, the talent. If the two-hour premiere is a good representation of what to expect for the season, this year’s crop of singers could be the show’s best yet. Spanning genres and age ranges, the contestants in Season 5’s opener aren’t messing around. An early frontrunner, Matthew Schuler manages to get all four coaches to turn around faster than anyone in the show’s history. Be sure to check out his stellar audition below.
“The Voice” returns for Season 5 on Monday, Sept. 23 at 8 p.m. ET on NBC.