"The Voice's" universe was in a hot dense state Monday night, when two coaches fought to keep Briana Cuoco, the younger sister of "Big Bang Theory" star Kaley Cuoco.
The Battle Rounds are all about the steals, and Christina Aguilera started the fracas when she picked Jacquie Lee over Cuoco (thus costing her any chance at a guest gig as Penny's long-lost cousin on the hit CBS sitcom). In response, both CeeLo Green and Blake Shelton pushed their buttons.
CeeLo spoke first. "I believe that there's a story in your voice and I want to help nurture your niche, so I think you could do very well here on Team CeeLo," he said. Then he turned to Blake and said, "Beat that."
That got Adam Levine cheering — but sadly for him, Blake could, indeed, beat that. And without even bringing his A game.
"I have a feeling how you performed that song that you're probably a songwriter, and how you really connect with the lyrics like that, it's almost as possible not to be," he said.
What? What kind of sales pitch is that?! That's not a desperate plea — it's a statement of fact. But it was enough for Cuoco, even though CeeLo had also pushed for her at the blind auditions.
"I wanted to steal Briana because I think that she can shape-shift so to speak and be different things. But I got other steals, and I got other chicks up my short sleeves," CeeLo said.
Aw, CeeLo. Don't be mad. Maybe you can at least get the consolation prize and write a new "Big Bang Theory" theme song to replace the Barenaked Ladies version. After all, it's not like they ever tried to help Cuoco's singing career.
"Why is Adam such an idiot?"
Blake now has to wait until the Knockout Rounds before he can push his button again. He'd previously started the night off by swiping Nic Hawk from Adam after Nic lost his sing-along to wedding singer Grey.
"Aw, Adam, you screwed up so bad!" Blake said once the results were announced, causing Nic to break down in tears.
"Why are you stealing Nic Hawk?" host Carson Daly asked.
"Why is Adam such an idiot?" Blake replied. "Why don't you ask me that?"
"You delivered an excellent vocal performance and you did all that other crap that you do," Blake then told Nic. "Will you teach me how to dance?"
"Hell yeah, I'll teach you how to dance," Nic said.
That might be a tougher task than winning "The Voice" — but it'll definitely be an interesting pairing to watch going forward.
"If there ever was an odd couple, it's me and Nic," said Blake. "I think this is gonna be a lot of fun."
Love for Anthony
The other contender for top battle of the night was from Team CeeLo, with Anthony Paul taking on Caroline Pennell in a duet of "As Long As You Love Me." The song may be Justin Bieber, but the dark arrangement suited Caroline's unique vocal stylings and caused CeeLo to get downright poetic in his praise.
"There's something so surreal about your voice," he said. "It encourages me to dream with my eyes open."
"CeeLo! I love that line," responded Christina. "That's beautiful,"
Maybe that swayed her heart, because after CeeLo picked Caroline and urged the other judges, "Steal him … someone!" Christina pushed her button and got him.
"Christina stole Anthony, and it's bittersweet. I think that I was wrong pairing them together," CeeLo said.
Cher + Adam?
Blake and guest mentor Cher only had one battle on Monday's show, but it was enough to make Blake a little jealous of one of his fellow coaches.
Blake urged both Justin Chain and Shelbie Z to bring their best to their battle, noting how much Adam would love to steal one of his country singers.
"I love Adam!" Cher said.
"Oh you do?" Blake said, then challenged, "What's your favorite song he does?"
That gave Cher pause. "Oh, they're all so good," she said.
So maybe she doesn't have any Maroon 5 songs on her iPod. But that might explain why Blake stole Nic, who said at the auditions that Adam might be too good-looking to work with. Best to keep those with a crush on his fellow coach nearby.
But Adam didn't return the favor by stealing Justin, and the country crooner went home after Blake stuck with Shelbie.