Fox’s The Masked Singer, the bonkers TV series that features masked celebrities competing via song as one is eliminated each week and their true identity is revealed, has unveiled its winner. Spoiler alert: it’s Monster, who it turns out is T-Pain. The rapper also surprise released new album 1UP via Cinematic Music Group on Wednesday.
Through an eight week broadcast, the competitors sang and dropped hints at their identity in front of an audience and a panel of judges – including Robin Thicke, Ken Jeong, the Pussycat Dolls’ Nicole Scherzinger, Jenny McCarthy, and guest judge Kenan Thompson – who tried to determine who each celebrity was behind their respective mask. Thompson had already predicted Bee was Gladys Knight prior to the finale. He was correct.
The rapper battled until the end to become one of the final three with Gladys Knight’s Bee and Donny Osmond’s Peacock. Bee, aka Knight, sang a lovely “I Can’t Make You Love Me” by Bonnie Raitt as her final song before her reveal, and most of the judges guessed correctly as to her identity.
Meanwhile, Peacock, aka Osmond, performed a pumped-up “Shake a Tail Feather” by Ray Charles, which found him and his dancers grooving through the audience.
Jenny McCarthy guessed correctly about Osmond’s identity (with Jeong also vacillating about him possibly being the Peacock), although both of them along with Scherzinger ventured that he could also be Neil Patrick Harris. Thompson and Thicke guessed “Weird Al” Yankovic.
But it was Monster who took the final prize with his performance of Montell Jordan’s “This is How We Do It.” The judges were still trying to work out his identity during the song with a guess of Martin Lawrence while T-Pain dropped some fancy footwork into the set.
“It’s not easy to sing rap like Montell Jordan ’cause it takes a lot out of you and then doing the Russian squat jumps that you were doing, you know you bring a lot of heart to the show,” Thompson said after the performance.
However, when it came to the reveal, it was a surprise for most everyone. Thicke guessed Jamie Foxx, Jeong thought Darius Rucker, Scherzinger thought maybe Cee-Lo Green, but wasn’t convinced, while Thompson named Martin Lawrence but then went with Tyrese Gibson. McCarthy guessed totally left-field with Michael Vick. None of them came close, although the host Nick Cannon wrote down who he thought it was and unveiled that he was the only one with the correct choice.
“I didn’t have a chance to come into the game with my natural voice and, you know, a lot of my peers did and they get accepted,” the rapper said, who sang with his unadorned voice during the competition rather than the auto-tune he is known for. “This helped me get my voice out there even more.”