Right before the battle, Emily reminds again of her crush and Curtis puts on his game face and his biggest cowboy hat. Curtis and Emily start singing. Like all the other singers, they are shaky on the verses and wail on the chorus. Emily is owning the stage although she is more than a little uneven, but since I didn't remember Curtis existed, this is not an especially surprising turn of events. At the end of the song, as the last refrain of "I Need You Now," the two kiss lustily. The judges' jaws drop trying to figure out if it was planned. Hint: It was. Blake makes a cornball joke that they were supposed to "Duet, not DO IT" and then laughs at himself, which is almost endearing. Christina feels the need to point out that Emily had a mix of weak notes and a few strong ones. Adam lusts after Curtis' baritone. In the end Cee Lo goes with Curtis, because... I don't know. He finds men in cowboy hats attractive? He has some strategy that involves giving America the white boy of its dreams? So Curtis bids farewell to Emily and joins cutie patootie Vicci Martinez, soul singer Nakia, but also state fair pig farmers Tori and Taylor Thompsen, so at least he'll have someone to talk to about the good old days in 4H when he didn't have to kiss anyone unless he really, really wanted to.
As we leave, Carson reminds us that there is hope: The live shows start next week at 9 PM ET and the judges will return to their roles of coaches and America will step up and judge the fuck out of these singers.
Melissa Locker a.k.a Lulu Bates fell asleep five minutes ago. You can follow her on Twitter @woolyknickers.