Warning! The following contains spoilers for The Voice Season 18 finale. Read at your own risk!
The Voice has had its struggles in the adjustment to producing episodes from home, but has gotten on track just in time for the Season 18 finale. Each remaining competitor got to sing two songs in Part 1, one being a cover and the other a song each competitor worked on with the songwriters of NBC's Songland.
The end result was each contestant getting an original that, in my opinion, actually sounded worthy of radio play. Not everyone is in agreement with that take though, and in fact, some people were actually quite upset Songland was brought in for some cross promotion on The Voice.
While it makes complete sense why The Voice would want to collaborate with Songland, not everyone thought that having Ester Dean, Ryan Tedder, and Shane McAnally helping the finalists for Season 18 construct a song was a great idea. Not because they thought the original songs were garbage necessarily, but the performances just weren't the covers of classic songs they already knew.
Some viewers even took shots at the way Songland contributed, because not all contestants were required to put in the same amount of work on their songs. Certain contestants wrote most of a song with a few tweaks made by the songwriters, and others got full reworks. While it should be noted that writing original songs is not something all artists do or a requirement on The Voice, some watching from home did feel the levels of participation were a bit unfair.
There was plenty of naysaying in regards to The Voice allowing original songs via Songland, but there were supporters of what NBC was trying to do. Some appreciated the fact that the show was mixing things up even more by bringing in actual award-winning songwriters, and trying to get these finalists as radio-ready as one can get after winning a singing competition.
The reality is that The Voice did something other singing competitions have struggled with in the past and gave audiences a good grasp of what these competitors sound like when they aren't performing well-known songs. Few if any singers get popular performing strictly covers, so while it may not be as fun to hear an original over a classic by Journey, Prince, or Snow Patrol, playing originals may get some of these competitors a head start on their careers directly after The Voice if folks like their songs enough.
The Voice fandom made their thoughts clear on the use of Songland's originals, though it's hard to say who will end up winning Season 18. It seemed initially that this was strictly a race between Todd Tilghman and Thunderstorm Artis, but a night of incredible performances by CammWess definitely has me rethinking everything ahead of the big reveal.
The Voice Season 18 will draw to a close Tuesday, May 18 at 8:00 p.m. ET. Stick with CinemaBlend for more on what's happening with the singing competition, and for all the latest news happening in television and movies.