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On Monday night (April 15) The Voice introduced a brand-new phase of the competition that fans were anxious to see unfold. This new round, called the Cross Battles, replaced the Knockout rounds, which had been a consistent part of the show since Season 7.
For the Cross Battles, coaches would pick a contestant from their team and then have them compete against a contestant from another team. But the contestants don’t know who they’re singing against until they take to the stage.
Unlike the Knockouts, the Cross Battles are filmed live, and fans get to vote for the winner. Coaches have the power to “steal” another team’s artist once and “save” one of their own artists once.
The Voice hyped up its new phase in the week leading up to its debut, and the response was generally positive. Longtime viewers felt that the show was in need of a change, and were excited to see how the Cross Battles would shake things up.
But there were some naysayers from the get-go. Some viewers felt that it would be unfair to have fans vote so early on in the competition, fearing the show would turn into a popularity contest at such a crucial stage.
In other words, the reaction to the Cross Battles announcement was mixed.
But no matter what viewers thought when the new round was announced, most were anxious to see how the new round would work. It was definitely entertaining, but technical issues that lasted throughout the show kept the artists from sounding their best.
These technical issues drew a great deal of criticism from viewers. In fact, the sound problems were actually the subject of more criticism than the Cross Battles themselves.
However, those who looked past the sound problems and just responded to the Cross Battles didn’t have the most positive things to say either.
Several viewers expressed their hopes that the Cross Battles don’t return next season, while others maintained hope that the show will bring back the Knockouts someday. One fan even went so far as to say that the person who introduced the Cross Battles concept “should be fired!”
But the response to the Cross Battles wasn’t all negative.
Some viewers were loving the new format, and were throughly entertained by what they watched. As more people watch future Cross Battles rounds, and as they work out the sound issues, it will be interesting to see if the responses become more positive like these.
How about y’all? What did you think of the Cross Battles when you watched them for the first time? Did you love them, dislike them, or were you just turned off by the technical issues?
In case you happened to miss the first Cross Battles, watch one of its country-themed performances below.