How ‘The Voice’ Coaches Repeatedly Undermine the Point of the Show

The Voice: a talent competition show dead-set on discovering the nation’s next great vocalists, not the world’s next “star” or the next “full package” — both of which denote celebrity and rank fame above talent — but the next incomparable, unique, stand-out voice. Right? That’s why the title is so apropos, or so we thought. The coaches on The Voice may beg to differ.

The Voice coaches
‘The Voice’ (L-R) Kelly Clarkson, Gwen Stefani, John Legend, Blake Shelton | Trae Patton/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images via Getty Images

The Voice is on a mission to find the next great singer. While the bickering between the boys and girls — first Adam and Blake, now Kelly and Blake — is growing stale, it’s not the only peanut-gallery commentary detracting from the show’s intentions. Fans notice that the coaches often utter one sentence that seems to subvert the show’s premise.

The classic line on ‘The Voice’: “I should have pressed the button!”

One fan of The Voice noted that the coaches seem to undermine the show’s “entire premise” when their chairs turn around automatically — after they choose to pass on the vocalist — and they utter, “I wish I would’ve pressed it now!” Considering the show focuses on discovering a vocalist, sans appearances, many feel that such a comment goes against the very grain of the show. 

One fan chimed in and, seeming to agree with the above sentiment, pointed out Kelly Clarkson as a frequent culprit. The viewer stated:

I noticed this in Kelly a lot. She’ll pretend to press the button after she sees the person.

Reddit User 

While such a response could make it seem as if the coaches are undermining the show’s entire shtick, could there be another reasonable explanation? Could the coaches be noticing a unique factor that makes the voice more appealing after the fact? 

Is it about the look, or is it somehow still about the voice? 

Some fans of The Voice commented on this discussion forum, noting that this tends to happen when the voice doesn’t match the presumed gender; meaning, the voice is more unique and impressive than could have been understood previously. If a male can hit a high note akin to female vocalists, he’s supremely talented. However, how would you know if you thought the man singing was a woman all along? One fan stated:

…Sometimes it’s a gender thing, thinking if they knew it was a woman going that low, or a man with that kind of upper range, they probably had a lot more in them than just what the limited performance showed. It’s not like they are making the comments to people who weren’t good, at all.

Reddit User

Fans also note that the coaches tend to say this after realizing the contestant is quite young; meaning, with proper coaching and mentorship, the “no” could have been the next winner, as a youthful singer with a ton of power often only needs to learn control. 

While the above theories cut the coaches a break, fans still feel that this sentence often rears its head when the contestants look like stars — when they seem like a fit for stardom  — which still goes against the point of The Voice.