Queens of pop: Kylie Minougue, pictured with special guest Katy Perry.

Queens of pop: Kylie Minougue, pictured with special guest Katy Perry. Photo: @TheVoiceAu

The number of contestants is set to be slashed once more in battle round three, and it’s the respective team captains acting as judge, jury and executioner.

There’s something a little more personal in the whole ‘this guy is better than you’ part of the show, and I found myself secretly hoping for a diva breakdown or two.

This "song is not us?, said Kristal, one half of ZK.

This "song is not us,": Kristal, one half of ZK. Photo: Channel Nine

First up, a clash of Victorians with ‘theatrical Tom’ Oliver up against the delicate-voiced, ukulele-playing John Lingard.

Tom was very nasal, but easily overpowered John who suffered another setback when he “hit a few wobblies” in their rendition of Counting Stars by One *Republic.

Kylie saved John for some reason, meaning we waved goodbye to Tom and his divine stage mum. A lost opportunity for some quality antics.

Next up it was Lionel Cole versus Sabrina Batshon.

“I spent my life being that guy’s (Nat King Cole) nephew. I ran all the way to Australia to be me,” complained Lionel.

Yeah? Then why mention it at all? Why choose to sing Unforgettable in your blind audition? The hypocrisy is strong in this one…

Heading into the rehearsal, Lionel attempted to sweeten up his rival with a rose he nicked from a vase in the foyer. Smooth.

The Beauty and the Beast theme song suited Sabrina best, with Lionel complaining the song was “too high”.

Turns out it was too high for him, leading to an awkward moment on stage, though both made a fine effort in destroying one of the best loved Disney songs with their vocal gymnastics. It was way, way, way too much – do they think they’re better than Celine Dion and Peabo Bryson? Why did Ricky think that was OK?

Perhaps completely irrelevant, but I could not take my eyes off of Lionel’s scuffed up skate shoes.

Ricky chose to save Sabrina, but Lionel was given the chance to stick around by the other three judges. Ultimately, he chose to join Team Kylie after a prolonged bout of decision making, partly to keep the audience in suspense, partly because he “gets a slow sometimes”.

Judge Joel pitted Frank Lakoudis against 56-year-old Harry Healy in the dark Red Hot Chili Peppers tune Under the Bridge.

Joel said it’s a tip of the cap to the performers to give them such a classic song, perhaps forgetting that the song has already had one cringe-worthy cover by poppy girl band All Saints. How much can one song take?

Harry looks like Neil Finn (tick!), sounds a bit like Eddie Vedder (tick!), plays guitar (tick!) and has the eyes of Frank Sinatra (tick tick tick!), but somehow “this is still anyone’s battle” because Frank can sing powerful high notes well.

Flashing his jocks on national TV seemed to work for Frank with Joel choosing to save him, sending Harry packing. I like to think it’s Joel’s way of saying ‘you don’t need this show, bro’.

Over in Team Ricky, Carly Yelayotis had a little bit of a shy crush thing going on with C Major (honestly, what’s so wrong with using your real name?).

They sang a very blah Rihanna song which neither of them nailed, seemingly evidenced by Will’s unimpressed facial expressions.

He either had a last minute change of heart or suffers the male equivalent of resting bitch face as Will was later stumbling over himself to tell the pair how good and “ferocious” they were.

Ricky saved C Major, while Will snapped up Carly allowing this little staged show-mance in the making to continue for at least another few episodes.

For the showdown between duo ZK and Tasha Amoroso, Will seemed to favour Tasha in choosing a quirky Mumford and Sons song.

Despite a meek protest from Kristal that the “song is not us”, ZK outclassed Tasha with a ‘haunting’ performance teamed with Zaachariahah’s fierce yellow scarf.

No save for Tasha, with the judges concurring that “she was better in the blinds”.

In a blatant plot device, Kylie chose Katy Perry hit Roar for the rip-snorting Kat Jade and ex-Australian Idol contestant Hayley Jensen to perform.

Oh, but what is this? Katy Perry is in Australia promoting a new tour? That’s enough reason to set up an awkward, five minute filmed meeting that the contestants didn’t ask for…

Hayley has a voice worthy of someone who has found moderate success on two reality singing shows, but Kat is a bit of a dork and that’s why I like her.

She wasn’t the best singer on the day (though she certainly wasn’t bad), but I found myself cheering a little bit when Kylie chose her to stay. She might get annoying down the track, but partly at the urging of her super enthusiastic friends, I’m willing to “get around her” for a little while longer.

On another note, does anyone else find the Supercoach app thing they’ve set up for The Voice a little weird?

*Corrected from: Direction