‘The Voice’ Begins Its 8th Season: What Do You Hope To See? [Opinion]

After a nearly three month hiatus, The Voice returns to NBC on Monday, February 24. Most of the Voice coaches from last season (Adam Levine, Blake Shelton, and Pharrell Williams) are back. The exception is Gwen Stefani, who acted as a temporary replacement for long-time Voice coach Christina Aguilera.

Aguilera elected to step away from the popular series to focus on family. Now, the diva is back and determined to reclaim her throne as everyone’s favorite blonde bombshell.

This will be my second season of watching The Voice, and after following the drama of last season to its conclusion, there are some things I’m REALLY looking forward to seeing. Other things, not so much.

First, the positive aspects of the series.

One thing I really love and hope we get more of is the playful banter among the Voice coaches. Especially when trying to convince Voice hopefuls to join them. Adam is extremely competitive in this regard, and it’s highly entertaining.

I wonder how Christina Aguilera will fare this on this season of The Voice, having been out of the loop for a spell.

Something else I hope that The Voice continues to do is push a lot of the talent found on YouTube.

I know that may anger some people (especially since that’s kind of how Justin Bieber got sprung on the world), but there is some real talent on that site. More than a few times I’ve happened across covers that were as good as if not better than the original artists. At the same time, it’s always refreshing to come across talent from surprising sources, like mailmen and TSA agents.

One thing I am a bit sick of (only because there are decades of this) is the “sob story” angle — only because it’s gotten to the point on these shows that persons are expected to be voted on because of tragedy rather than talent.

It’s always nice to see people overcome adversity, but this show is still called The Voice — and I cringe that much harder when NBC decides to trick us by sharing someone’s sad back story, only to have them come on stage and warble in a less than mediocre fashion. Having said that, I will take “sob” stories on The Voice every day of the week and twice on Sunday over NBC’s awkward, unrelenting, and rather overt product placements.

I know that the network has bills to pay, but sometimes it’s just so obvious it’s almost insulting. Less products, more focus on the talent.

Speaking of which, even though I love seeing the Voice judges interact, would it be too much to hope that NBC lets the show focus a bit more on the actual Voice contestants? The mentors on the show are already famous.

What do you hope to see on this season of The Voice?

[Image Credit: NBC’s The Voice]