1. CeeLo Green and Christina Aguilera returned.
No offense to Usher and Shakira, but the original coaches are an unbeatable foursome.
2. CeeLo had not one, not two, but five animals (including a llama named Ollama).
3. And other coaches had pets too.
Let’s be honest: What tops Adam with a golden retriever puppy?
4. Performances were fantastic from the beginning, back in the blind auditions.
Contestant Holly Henry got Blake to turn his chair in literally two seconds. By the end of her song, Christina, CeeLo, and Adam had turned around too.
5. Like, serious talent.
No offense to American Idol or The X Factor.
6. And their musical gifts went beyond vocals.
So many contestants this season knew how to play different instruments and had outstanding performances where they showed off both talents.
7. And the coaches knew they were among true stars.
Jacquie Lee, Christina definitely has great things in store for you.
9. And the coaches didn’t stick to their own genres.
Though CeeLo and Adam always had diverse teams, Season 5 saw Blake take a chance with the truly unique Nic Hawk while Christina gambled with country singer Olivia Henken.
10. New rules were added that made things more exciting.
In previous seasons, steals were only used in the Battle Round, but this year, there were also steals in the Knockout Rounds. Will Champlin, for example, was stolen twice — in the Battle Rounds (by Christina) and in the Knockouts (by his original coach Adam) — and went all the way to the finals, finishing in third place.
11. #VoiceSave was #awesome.
#VoiceSave was so much fun for the audience. It allowed people to interact with the show (by saving one of the Bottom 3 via Twitter) without worrying about voting fees.
12. Carson Daly did an excellent job manning both hosting and social media duties.
Sorry, Christina Milian.
16. And the coaches had great chemistry.
Look at those linked arms! That’s not for show.
17. Artists truly poured their hearts out.
No one can argue that Matthew Schuler’s rendition of “Hallelujah” was anything but overwhelmingly emotional, even though he was eliminated after the top 8 show.
18. The performances dominated iTunes.
After the finale, five of the top 10 iTunes singles were songs from the show.
19. Even the Emmys recognized the superiority of The Voice.
The Voice won the Emmy for Outstanding Reality Program this year, beating The Amazing Race, which has won the award eight times since it was created 10 years ago.
Because who needs to travel around the world when you have a Jamaican-born, part-Chinese-Cherokee-Black-English champion?!
Did I mention Tessanne Chin can do Whitney Houston, Gwen Stefani, Pink, Kelly Clarkson, Celine Dion, and pretty much any other diva justice?