The Voice Finally Reveals the Season 18 Runner Up. Is it Toneisha Harris or Thunderstorm Artis?
Oop. This little item slipped through the cracks. A couple of days ago, The Voice announced on social media that Toneisha Harris from Team Blake Shelton finished the season in second place behind winner Todd Tilghman.
— The Voice (@NBCTheVoice) May 21, 2020
On Tuesday’s live finale host Carson Daly abruptly announced the winner without announcing the 3rd place finisher. It was the first time in The Voice history that Carson didn’t reveal the runner-up live on air. With The Voice social media reveal of the runner-up, we now know that TPTB didn’t intend for Toneisha and Thunderstorm Artis from Team Nick Jonas to serve as co-runners up. It’s a thing that would have made no sense, quite honestly.
More than likely, by the end of the broadcast, producers ran short on time. After announcing that Micah Iverson from Team Kelly Clarkson came in fifth and CammWess from Team John Legend came in 4th, the show cut to commercial. After the break, Carson immediately announced the winner, leaving viewers very confused. At least Todd got a little time to celebrate on camera with his family back in Mississippi.
Here’s the The Voice season 18 Top 5 in order:
Fifth place – Micah Iverson – Team Kelly Clarkson
Fourth place – CammWess – Team John Legend
Third place – Thunderstorm Artis – Team Nick Jonas
Runner up – Toneisha Harris – Team Blake Shelton
WINNER – Todd Tilghman – Team Blake Shelton
Blake is the winningest coach in Voice history, with a total of 7 victories out of 18 seasons. But he hadn’t taken a title since Chloe Kohanski won season 13 back in 2017. Now, his team has nabbed both the No. 1 and No 2 spots. Kelly, who has won 3 out of the 5 seasons she has served as coach, came in last. Toneisha as the second highest vote getter means she probably would have advanced straight to the final, no wildcard needed, if she wasn’t competing against her own team members for a spot.
Blame the Seemingly Difficult to Produce At-Home Format
As far as the timing screw up is concerned, I blame the at-home format which had to be a nightmare to produce. Consider that even the usually unflappable Ryan Seacrest over at American Idol had a hard time managing the logistics. Ryan’s seemed so confused at times, his fans thought he had a stroke! In an interview before the finale, American Idol music director Kris Poole admitted that the at home format would not have been sustainable for more than a few weeks, and that he was just grateful to be able to work.
TV production is typically a centralized and collaborative affair. A large group of people work behind the scenes in one location to pull off a large studio production. When coronavirus concerns forced reality shows to produce remote shows, production became decentralized and unwieldy. Suddenly, all the participants are far flung. The coaches can’t just waltz onto set and plop themselves into their big red chairs. They, along with the artists are now responsible for their own makeup, costumes, lighting and set design. Producers and technicians have to manage it all from separate remote locations. It’s no wonder the live winners reveal for both Idol and The Voice suffered from technical problems.
Of course, TV production went remote because it’s not safe to work otherwise. The Covid-19 pandemic has killed hundreds of thousands of people. As long as everyone stays safe, that’s all that matters. And at least the contestants got to finish their seasons with a winner crowned. It’s all good.