Warning! The following contains spoilers from The Masked Singer’s Season 8 episode “Fright Night.” Read at your own risk!
The Masked Singer has eliminated so many performers at a rapid pace this season that it’s spooky, so it’s fitting that the last theme before Season 8’s semifinals round was “Fright Night.” This episode showed the creepy and spooky side of the Fox competition and unmasked some names with connections to the horror genre like Exorcist actress Linda Blair (Scarecrow), and Ghostbusters singer Ray Parker Jr. (Sir Bug a Boo). Neither performer was able to conquer Snowstorm and advance to the semifinals, despite their talented performances. Both contestants made it look easy, but as Ray Parker Jr. assured me in his interview with CinemaBlend, it’s not.
It’s not uncommon to see accomplished and even Grammy-winning singers eliminated from The Masked Singer, and as Ray Parker Jr. pointed out in our interview ahead of his elimination episode, there’s a good reason for that. I asked the Ghostbusters singer whether there was a difference between performing out of costume in rehearsals and in costume during the episode, and he confirmed it’s a huge difference:
Night and day. I mean, performing in the costume you’re hot as hell. And then when the lights come on it’s twice as hot. So now you’re twice as hot, [and] you’re trying to read the prompter so you can remember the lyrics to a song that’s not your song. And then you can’t read that either because the headpiece keeps moving around. Good thing they have a lot of rehearsals because you sort of learn the song ahead of time…I could see a little bit of the teleprompter, but it was more like I’ve done it in my head twenty times and so I kind of got the lyrics to the song and I know it now and it’s [like] my own song now.
The costumes are a necessary piece to The Masked Singer, and based on what I've learned from Ray Parker Jr., may also serve as a great equalizer amongst competitors each episode. Perhaps this is the reason why past seasons have seen untrained singers like NFL star Rob Gronkowski outlast bona fide singing talents like Dionne Warwick.
There’s something to be said about how well one can handle the pressure of performing in uncomfortable conditions, and by that logic, I could see how a professional athlete might have an advantage in that area. I'm not sure if there's a solution to this problem, or if it even requires a fix, but it does feel like something The Masked Singer's viewers should keep in mind when watching.
Ray Parker Jr. and Linda Blair’s eliminations meant that Snowstorm advanced to the semi-finals round, and will compete against Lambs and Harp for a chance to appear in the finale. As polarizing as this season’s format is, there’s no denying it still found the best singers of this season to duel it out at the end!
It’s also worth noting that The Masked Singer made history following this episode, as this will be the first time in show history that there’s guaranteed to be an all-female finale. The men of the competition just didn't cut it with voters this season, and I’m not sure that can be blamed on the format.
I will say, though, that maybe the costumes could take some of the blame, especially for those who had cumbersome ensembles similar to Ray Parker Jr. I’m not sure every eliminated Season 8 contestant can blame their costume for their performance, but I’d have to revisit this season with my Hulu subscription to be sure of that.
The Masked Singer is on to the semifinals on Fox, and fortunately, fans won’t have to wait that long to see it. Check out Fox on Thursday, November 24th at 8:00 p.m. ET, just after gobbling down some Thanksgiving food, to see who will be the final two contestants in the Season 8 finale.