Some ideas should be on the cutting room floor before they even come close to fruition. The idea for Christina Aguilera to duet with a hologram of the late, great Whitney Houston on the season finale of The Voice is one such plan and as such it is not that surprising it had to be scrapped last minute because of how poorly it was panning out for everyone involved. Unfortunately for NBC, The Voice, and anybody who wants to incorporate a hologram into a project for the next few months, video of the now-canceled performance somehow leaked online and people practically broke a land speed record to watch it before it was pulled later in the day.
According to most people who saw the full video (a screenshot of which you can see above), Aguilera does more than hold her own while singing “I Have Nothing” and “I’m Every Woman” alongside the poor facsimile of Houston. The issues that led to NBC axing the “surprise” performance (which Christina herself had mentioned previously) are all directly related to the quality of the hologram itself. As in, it looked nothing like Whitney and you would have to squint one eye and stand on your head to see the resemblance. From the frames that are still going around the internet, the hologram looks far closer to Lifetime’s low-budget movie portrayal of the legendary singer than the singer herself.
It’s a shame that Christina’s performance can’t be salvaged in some way, even without the hologram. Aguilera still has the pipes she is known for, and without a new album on the horizon and none since her 2012 release Lotus, it would be nice to have the blonde bombshell bust out the high notes on classic Whitney songs and impress everyone once again. After all, the gauche qualities of the original plan had so much more to do with dishonoring Houston’s memory with a shoddy facsimile of her than the fact that Aguilera would be covering her songs.
The good part is that at least everyone behind the scenes at NBC and The Voice realized what a mess they were about to unleash on themselves if they had followed through with the performance. In this case they just had to deal with some mockery from the comparatively small amount of people who saw the leaked video before it disappeared, which I am sure they can live with in place of a much larger catastrophe.