So… a frog, a cat, a mouse, and elephant, a banana and a taco walk into a bar. No, that’s not a joke. I couldn’t make this stuff up even if I tried. A new zoo revue, Group B, debuted on The Masked Singer this week (with, dare I say, much more Emmy-worthy costumes than the more casually dressed Group A), and one of them even sang a song by my favorite band, the Cure!
No, the Kitty didn’t sing “The Lovecats,” or “All Cats Are Grey.” The Banana didn’t sing “Bananafishbones.” And the Taco didn’t do “Hot Hot Hot!!!” It was the futuristic, prism-headed Elephant who sang “Friday I’m in Love.” But Wednesday I was sad, because the poor pop-singing pachyderm went home at the end of the night.
It turned out the Elephant was… a Hawk. Tony Hawk, to be specific. The legendary pro skateboarder’s faux British accent was pretty impressive, I must say, as was his supercool costume (imagine if Deadmau5 was an elephant, like if his name was Deadelephan✝ instead) and his post-punk song choice. (He explained that he picked it because he and his wife danced to a Cure tune at their wedding — though that was a cover, by the L.A. band Cold Cave, of Disintegration’s “Plainsong.” Probably not as TV-friendly.) I would’ve loved to see what Tony do next (maybe some Depeche Mode, Joy Division, or Smiths?), but he admitted that he only had “one song left” in him, and he seemed pretty relieved to pack up his trunk and go.
So perhaps this result was for the best. It’s certainly less likely to elicit the sort of online protest that surrounded Chaka “Miss Monster” Khan’s elimination last Wednesday, which was so controversial that host Nick Cannon actually felt the need to address it this week. But I know I will never forget the Elephant.
Let’s take a look at the five surviving contestants from Group B, and keep the guessing game going.
The Frog, “U Can’t Touch This”
This phunky amphibian started a zoot suit riot with a swagalicious performance that got the entire audience hopping. This one would indeed be hard to touch, as it was a great way to frog-kick off the episode.
The clues: There were references to “lightning bolts,” “slithering with the big frogs,” the 1996 Olympic Games, and the number 106, and the Frog said he “never had a chance to evolve my image and do things my way.”
Judges’ guesses: Kevin Hart, Michael Johnson, Carl Lewis, Ray J.
My guesses: It’s not easy guessing green. While it’s possible that this could be an Olympic athlete — and judging from the outfit, I really wish it was judge Jenny McCarthy’s ex, The Mask star Jim Carrey — I’m going to go out on a green limb here. Is it possible that this Frog is a friend of Prince? Is the dancing Frog the guy who did “The Bird,” and is he bringing some Jungle Love to the show” Everything about this character, from the purple suit to the hyper-confidence to the pimp moves, reminded me of Morris Day. I know this is a leap in logic, and I should not jump to conclusions, but I know this performance was a good time. And by the way, the Time’s “Ice Cream Castles” peaked at No. 106 on the pop chart. But the “106” could be a reference to 106 & Park, hosted by Bow Wow, a young guy who might have an easier time pulling off these moves.
The Kitty, “Dangerous Woman”
While her vocals were not quite at a Grande level, this Bowie-eyed feline showgirl made a grand runway-worthy entrance to RuPaul’s “Kitty Girl.” And she owned the stage like a boogie-body-rockin' queen during her sexy burlesque performance. Meow!
The clues: “People don’t think of me at the person I’ve become, but the person I once was. … No one has seen me like this before,” purred the Kitty, who was thrilled to be “at home among weird and wonderful” as she dropped visual references to roses and fighting pirates.
Judges’ guesses: Julianne Hough, Paris Hilton, Nicole Richie, Snooki, or someone from The Bachelorette.
My guess: If only Taylor Swift’s career wasn’t still doing so well, I’d guess it was her, because the clues totally add up: Her desire to revamp her image, her love of cats, her battle against (music) piracy, and the fact that she has a song called “Roses.” Would Taylor really do something like this, though? Probably not, especially since she already just played a singing cat in Cats… and that didn’t work out so well. So I am going to go with actress Kate Bosworth, who has two different-colored eyes and dated Orlando Bloom when he was in Pirates of the Caribbean. Why not?
The Taco, “Fly Me to the Moon”
This spicy guy had hot-sauce-in-my-bag swag. Even his microphone was shaped like a Tabasco bottle! And his vocals were red-hot, too. I did not expect that Sinatra-esque croon to emanate from his hard shell, and from the shocked looks on their faces, neither did the judges. The Taco was on fire!
The clues: “Like the comfort food that I am, I’ve been a comforting part of your lives for decades,” said the Taco, as the camera cut to shot of ’80s relics like Rubik’s cubes and VHS tapes. There was also an ship anchor and a trolley car.
Judges’ guesses: Regis Philbin, Martin Short, Bob Saget.
My guess: I think it’s Saget. The videotapes are a nod to America’s Funniest Home Videos, the trolley and anchor are Full House references (the show take place in San Francisco, and Saget’s character, Danny, was a news anchor), and Bob has showcased his surprisingly strong singing voice in the past.
The Mouse, “Get Here”
This small but mighty mouse roared; although her voice was matured and weathered, it was still soulful, and clearly the voice of an old-school legend.
The clues: She said she “wrote the playbook” and was a “leader” in her field. There were also mentions of “1979” (I cannot figure that one out yet), “gold,” cheerleaders, and “bang bang.”
Judges’ guesses: Darlene Love, Dionne Warwick, Maya Rudolph.
My guess: Despite the “bang bang” clues it’s not Ariana Grande, who’s too young, or Jessie J, who’s too tall. Dionne, at 5-foot-7, is too tall as well, even though it sounds a lot like her and the entire Twitterverse seems to think it’s her. Those people need to consult their Psychic Friends! This is more likely to be “Leader of the Pack” singer Darlene Love, who once recorded cheerleader vocals for a Cheech & Chong single and is only 5-foot-2. The “bang bang” mention could actually be a vague reference to the Big Bang Theory character Darlene.
The Banana, “A Little Less Conversation”
This glitzy, Vegas-style Elvis number was truly bananas! He didn’t sound like a big belter, but like the White Tiger, he was silly and fun.
The clues: This appealing party dude wears a cowboy hat and blue collar, suffers from a lot of hangovers, and is “tough on outside but a smoothie on inside.” He also made references to a blowfish and giving a “hoot” — which means it’s not Darius Rucker, because that would just be way too obvious.
Judges’ guesses: Bill Engvall, Ed Helms, Darius Rucker.
My guess: At first I thought it was Jeff Foxworthy from Blue Collar TV, who makes a lot of Elvis Presley jokes and loves Elvis impersonators, and had a top 10 album the same week as Hootie & The Blowfish’s Cracked Rear View. But it sure sounds like Bret Michaels, who’s certainly open to appearing on reality shows — and picked this Elvis classic as one of his “10 Songs I Can’t Live Without” for SiriusXM. It’s Bret! Look what the cat dragged in, indeed.
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