Tonight, “The Sing-Off” capped off season 4 with a heck of a two-hour finale, which should really be a master class to some other shows as to how to do it. There was singing almost from start to finish, a small amount of guest performances (and all of them featured at least one person from the show), a return from the reigning champs, and even some fun pre-packaged segments.
So what we’re going to do here is go through all of the performances from the night, and then grade the show as a whole. Regardless of who the winner is, we’ve all gotten a little something out of this season.
Opening, “Man in the Mirror” – It’s not a Christmas song, and while that would have been nice, there is a certain amount of the Christmas message of change and being a better person in here that we still liked it. We imagine that we’re going to be liking most of the night’s performances. Grade: A-.
Nick Lachey and Jewel, “It Had To Be You” – Complete cheese, but at least everyone embraced it. It’s basically like when someone dares you to stick your entire head into a nacho cheese fountain, and you willingly go along with it. Grade: B-.
Ten, “Joyful, Joyful” with Shawn Stockman – Just pure Christmas fun, and Stockman’s voice here is also a joy to behold. We’d honestly have no problem just listening to him sing for a good half-hour straight of the finale … then followed by the same sort of half-hour featuring Ben Folds. Grade: A.
Pentatonix, “I Need Your Love” – Serious question right now: Is Pentatonix actually the best vocal group of their kind in television right now? If there is anyone that is better than them at performing modern music like this, we want to know. Also, we’ve probably watched more of their videos online than probably any other singing show winner ever. Grade: A+.
Home Free, “I Want Crazy” – We will be the first to admit that country is not our cup of tea, but there is just something about the way that they tell their story that just feels so genuine and touching. These guys needed “The Sing-Off” for them to find themselves again after years of becoming beaten-down and jaded on the road, and maybe “The Sing-Off” needed them to expand what we think about what the voice can do. Grade: A.
98 Degrees, “I’ll Be Home for Christmas” – There were some moments where the arrangement was a little too forced and didn’t leave enough space, but it was awesome to see the guys back together for some nostalgia on the show. Plus, it’s just another cool example of how humble all of these guys have remained. Plus, that’s the only sign in the audience that we legitimately felt weren’t planted there by producers. Grade: A-.
Vocal Rush and Ben Folds, “Little Drummer Boy” – What was interesting about Ben is that he may be the most giving performer on TV. He never once tried to take over the performance, and brought his pretty perfect voice to every little portion of the song. This wasn’t the best performance (what was with that finger wag?), but very good nonetheless. Grade: B+.
Ten, “Love On Top” – A very good performance from the group, and it’s still amazing what they have been able to do in the short amount of time that they have been together. If there is only one reason why we feel like Home Free should win, it may just be that they’ve went through so much more as a group together. However, this isn’t meant to take away at all from what was a great performance. Grade: A.
Home Free, “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” – This was a very nice performance, but in comparison to what we had with Ben Folds and Vocal Rush, it really felt like this was so much more about Jewel than it was the rest of the singers in the group. Since this is their moment, we wanted to see them shine a little more. Grade: B.
Pat Benatar, “We Belong” – A good performance, but what in the world was it doing here? Also, get that guitar from Neil Giraldo out of there! It was basically a prop. Grade: B+.
Vocal Rush, “Roar” – A perfect choice of song for the last performance, and a sign of how far the group has come. Great vocals and harmony, but during the chorus the entire group was battling this huge temptation not to rush the tempo a few times … and they occasionally lost. Grade: B-.
The results – Vocal Rush came in third, Ten in second, and Home Free was the winning act! This felt like what the editors wanted, and we have no problem with it at all. These guys really deserved the win, and they’ve got it. Plus, we got a win just for being a part of this viewing experience again. Overall grade: A.
Do you think the right person won “The Sing-Off”? Be sure to share what you think below, and also click here if you want to see where we ranked everyone going into this.