Last night's penultimate episode of The Voice found each contesting singing — si-hih-hih-hiiiiiiiing-uh-ayeeee-eee-ooo-ing — three songs: one with their mentor, one "for" their mentor, and a showcase number. It was all very by the book, with soaring vocals and tacky production numbers, except for the part when contestant Tony Lucca maybe sort of called Christina Aguilera a bitch.
Lucca hasn't been Aguilera's favorite this season, starting with the first episode when she didn't recognize him from their days on the Mickey Mouse Club together, back when dinosaurs roamed the earth and hope meant something. Later in the season, Lucca sang "Baby One More Time," which many Voice fans perceived as a dig to Ms. Aguilera.
Last night, though, Lucca sang "99 Problems," though it was Hugo's weird, neutered, bluegrass version of it. Lucca never actually said the word bitch, and neither did Adam nor Christina, which makes the whole thing even stranger. After Lucca's performance, Blake Shelton said the song was "fun," but Aguilera criticized the song choice, saying that the "lyrical connotation was a little bit derogatory towards women." Then Adam got mad, then Christina got mad, then everyone was mad for a second. (According to Radar, Aguilera was mad before the show even started.)
Levine says that he and Lucca "talked about this for hours," which strains credulity, and he was wearing a sassy "Team Xtina" T-shirt under his button-down — indicating that he at least thought there was the possibility that he'd be prompted to shed a layer as part of a truly dumb fracas.
This season of The Voice has pretty much been the mayor of Dullville, so squeezing in one last moment of "controversy" before the finale is good business for everyone. One lingering, serious issue remains, though: What is going on with Christina's cruddy bodega to-go cup and Adam's empty Starbucks iced coffee? At least upgrade to something reusable, Voice folk.