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The competition is stiffer than ever on The Masked Singer, with a talented crop of singers and some clue packages that are less obvious than usual in Season 4. Sure, there are the singers like Wendy Williams who were easy to identify, and Mickey Rourke went ahead and confirmed his own identity, but others have multiple valid guesses coming from both viewers and judges. (Except for Ken Jeong.) Now, with the Group A Finals on the way, let's take a close look at Popcorn.
Popcorn made her Masked Singer debut in the Season 4 premiere, up against the stellar Sun and the game-changing Snow Owls, among others, and has turned in two performances so far: Pink's "What About Us" and Harry Styles' "Falling." A sneak peek clue package featured Popcorn referring to her performances as "dynamic, delightful, and diva-licious," mentioning "mirror mirror on the wall."
Her first official clue package, set against a New York City background, mentioned "Snacks and the City" as a clear reference to Sex and the City, then added what appeared to be a Tiger King reference. (I feel comfortable ruling out Carole Baskin, who didn't last long on another reality TV competition.) There was a shot of a goldfish in a bowl wearing enormous hoop earrings, and she built a "career around love."
Popcorn worked long nights as a hustler, and a plate of meatloaf with a "Welcome to the 'hood!" sign around an apple and snake suggests a connection to Meat Loaf. She jet-setted to "exotic places with royalty." The second clue package opened on a title card of "The Corn and the Beautiful," potentially pointing toward a soap opera connection with the nod to CBS' The Bold and the Beautiful. There was a shot of sixteen candles, a Rubik's Cube, and a crimping iron, and a pride flag.
Who do these clues point towards? Let's dive into our top five guesses!
Sofia Carson was a popular guess early on due to the "mirror mirror" clue. The 27-year-old actress is best known for her role as Evie in Disney Channel's Descendants franchise, in which she played the daughter of the Evil Queen of Snow White fame. Acting in Descendants meant that she needed to be able to sing, and she released a solo single called "Love Is the Name." That said, the rest of the clues don't fit particularly well, and I don't think Carson matches either the voice or body type of Popcorn.
Hallmark star Lacey Chabert is another guess for Popcorn. On top of her Broadway past as Cosette in Les Miserables to prove that she can sing, Popcorn's sparkly gloves had some thinking of the Infinity Gauntlet of Marvel fame, and Chabert voiced Gwen Stacy in The Spectacular Spider-Man. Throw in some cooking references that could connect to her Hallmark movie called The Sweetest Christmas and that "diva-licious" could refer to her Mean Girls character, and she's a candidate. Again, however, I don't think the voice is quite a match, and Chabert -- who stands at 5'2" -- seems too short for Popcorn in my book. She could be a great fit for Dancing with the Stars, though!
The shot of sixteen candles in one of Popcorn's clue packages naturally resulted in viewers guessing 16 Candles star Molly Ringwald (who more recently appeared on The CW's Riverdale). Ringwald is an '80s icon thanks to Pretty in Pink and The Breakfast Club on top of 16 Candles, and there are even videos of Ringwald singing the Breakfast Club anthem available online to prove she can sing. As judge Jenny McCarthy pointed out, the crimping iron and Rubik's Cube are straight out of the '80s. Ringwald fits the body type more than Sofia Carson and Lacey Chabert, but I think lacks the powerhouse raspiness of Popcorn.
When it comes to '80s icons known for their music rather than their movies, it would be silly to overlook Cyndi Lauper. An accent that sounds suspiciously like Lauper comes through when Popcorn isn't singing, and the Rubik's Cube and crimping iron could point toward Lauper. One of her biggest hits was "True Colors" and she's an LGBTQ activist, which would explain the pride flag. Lauper also performed with Meat Loaf back in 2004. She has the powerhouse voice that fits Popcorn, and is a big enough name that she would be an impressive get for The Masked Singer.
Honestly, the crimping iron alone would point toward '80s music icon Taylor Dayne. Meat Loaf covered Taylor Dayne's song called "Original Sin," which fits the image of meatloaf along with a snake and an apple that had a bite taken out. A New York native, "Snacks and the City" could refer to the setting, and "jet-setting with royalty" could refer to music royalty rather than actual royalty. Her voice seems to match, and she's a music star without being such a big name that it's hard to believe The Masked Singer could have landed her.
The Most Likely Candidate
A lot can change from week to week on The Masked Singer as clue packages get more elaborate, as proved by how far the judges generally come from their first impression guesses. That said, my money is on Taylor Dayne ahead of the Group A Finals. I feel like the clues that point in other directions tend to be too obvious, especially the sixteen candles and Molly Ringwald. Dayne fits the obscure clues, and The Masked Singer was aiming to make the clues more challenging for Season 4. Sign me up for Team Taylor Dayne!
See what happens for the remaining secret celebrity singers of Group A with the next new episode of The Masked Singer, airing on Wednesday, November 11 at 8 p.m. ET. Popcorn is up against Sun and Snow Owls. While I think Sun might actually win the whole season and the Snow Owls have the gimmick of their duo status going for them, I think Popcorn's odds of surviving at least one more week in The Masked Singer Season 4 are pretty good. For some additional viewing options, be sure to check out our 2020 fall TV premiere schedule.