Spoilers ahead for the Season 21 premiere of The Voice.
The Voice Season 21 premiered on Monday night, and new coach Ariana Grande was quick out of the gate, learning fast that she had to fight dirty to steal artists away from fellow coaches Kelly Clarkson, John Legend and Blake Shelton. Grande seemed to form a friendly rivalry with Shelton, but after one audition, she left the cowboy in the dust as she pulled out some quick math skills to disprove a long-held theory of The Voice.
That’s right, leave it to the woman whose song “34+35” includes the lyric, “Math class, never was good” to prove that Blake Shelton, the only coach who’s been on the singing competition show for all 21 seasons and holds the most team wins, is actually not the NBC show’s most successful mentor.
After Katherine Ann Mohler enticed both Ariana Grande and Blake Shelton to turn their chairs for her rendition of “We Don’t Have to Take Our Clothes Off,” Shelton was trying to win Mohler over by talking about his lifetime of experience in the music industry. That’s when Grande pointed out that the OG coach has a lower success rate on The Voice than fellow coach Kelly Clarkson.
In some impressively quick math, Ariana Grande calculated that while Blake Shelton has won eight seasons out of twenty for 40%, Clarkson has three wins from her seven seasons on the show for 43%. (It’s actually 42.8% rounded up, if you checked that math on the calculator, which I totally did.)
Blake Shelton gave Ariana Grande a hearty round of applause for bringing the numbers so quickly, and John Legend said what we were all thinking at the time.
Now, did she really do that math in her head, or did she come prepared to use that stat against the always-boastful Blake Shelton? I don’t know, and I don’t care. It really did look like she came up with the numbers on the spot, and it was damn impressive. Shelton has used his winning record to try to get artists on his team for years. Aside from the country artists who want to work with the cowboy, Shelton is able to draw artists of other genres — such as Season 20 winner Cam Anthony — based largely on the fact that his team has garnered more wins than any other coach’s team.
Does this fact raise Kelly Clarkson’s stock now that it’s been pointed out? It almost has to, right? But that’s all down the road. For now, we’re still trying to recover, because Ariana Grande dragging Blake Shelton like that had social media users feeling some kind of way.
Ariana Grande impressed with more than her fast math on the Season 21 premiere of The Voice. The “Thank U, Next” singer racked up three artists for her team while the rest of the coaches each picked up two. She has yet to net a Four-Chair Turn, however, as the two from Monday’s episode went to Blake Shelton and Kelly Clarkson’s teams. The Voice returns for a second night of Blind Auditions at 8 p.m. ET Tuesday on NBC. Be sure to check out our 2021 Fall TV Schedule to keep up with all of your shows’ premiere dates.
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Mom of two and hard-core '90s kid. Unprovoked, will quote Friends in any situation. Thrives on New Orleans Saints football, The West Wing and taco trucks.