‘The Voice’ recap: Nick Hagelin sent home in ultra-close vote

Nick Hagelin (center, with Paxton Ingram and Carson Daly) has been sent home ahead of the Top 8 on "The Voice."

Nick Hagelin (center, with Paxton Ingram and Carson Daly) has been sent home ahead of the Top 8 on “The Voice.”

(Tyler Golden/NBC)

In the end, having a ton of charisma (a “thing,” Pharrell Williams called it Tuesday), a sweet smile, a variety of talents (he sings, he dances, he plays guitar), a beautiful family and the heartfelt support of his coach, Christina Aguilera, weren’t enough to keep Nick Hagelin in the race past the Top 9 on “The Voice.”

The former ballet dancer and surprisingly insightful dude was sent home this week -- on a results show that also included appearances by James Bay, who sang his hit “Let It Go,” and Andy Samberg, in character as Conner 4 Real, alongside Adam Levine. Hagelin’s departure, just shy of next week’s semifinals, came in what Carson Daly let us know had been an ultra-close instant-save final tally, perhaps the closest ever: In the show’s final seconds, we learned that Paxton Ingram, of Team Blake, who had joined Hagelin in the easy-to-predict bottom two this week, had edged him out for the save by fewer than 100 tweets.

That’s a serious squeaker. And while in one sense Hagelin’s ouster wasn’t entirely foretold -- he had taken the lead early on, with 51% of the votes compared to Ingram’s 49, before the vote closed to 50/50 by the end of the commercial break – in another it totally was. America had instantly saved Hagelin last week; only very rarely do the voters save a singer a second time.


So even though Hagelin did a perfectly fine job with his instant-save song, Eric Clapton’s “Change the World,” which, to be fair, was not quite as vocally impressive as Paxton’s save-me rendition of Whitney Houston’s “How Will I Know” (his second Houston song of the week, but who’s counting?), the voters sent him home.

Still, Hagelin – whose soul, Aguilera noted, is especially shiny and bright -- didn’t leave us without a final nugget of wisdom to chew on.

“Last night you proved that you are indeed a triple threat: singer, musician, dancer. You received high praise from our coaches,” Daly told a pleasantly smiling, almost beatific-looking Hagelin. “What’s the single most important thing that you’ve learned about yourself by being on ‘The Voice’?”

“This process has been about integration for me. Not just artistically, which Christina encouraged me to showcase last night, but also personally and spiritually,” Hagelin replied, like a true-blue guru. “During blind auditions, I was lucky enough to have my family invited onstage. And that was the first time in my music career that I decided to sort of marry these two worlds that for no real reason, I had decided to separate. And so this experience has really taught me to be myself and take the things that bring the most light in my life and expand that gift to the world.”

“Sounds like a lesson for all of us,” Daly said.