SPOILER ALERT: Do not read ahead if you have not watched the Season 8, episode 9, of “The Masked Singer,” “Fright Night,” which aired Nov. 23 on Fox.
Perhaps “The Masked Singer” judges are finally figuring out that this year’s episodic themes frequently reference the week’s new disguised celebrity contestants. This Wednesday’s episode was dubbed “Fright Night,” so who ya gonna call? “Ghostbusters” singer Ray Parker, Jr., of course. And who might also lurk on stage? “Exorcist” star Linda Blair.
That’s right, for the episode’s reveals, Parker, Jr., and Blair were the next stars to be unmasked.
Blair, as the Scarecrow, stunned host Nick Cannon and the audience by volunteering to unmask and let the other two contestants duke it out to move on to next week. “I love this show so much,” she said. “I came to share how much I love you and what you all have done for the world and family entertainment. But I would like to officially bow out and unmask and let these two incredible competitors go on. These two competitors are the real deal. I just came to bother Ken [Jeong]. I have a really special reason for being here. And I want them to enjoy the stage and all the accolades they so deserve. I’ve enjoyed entertaining you so much through the years.”
Later, Parker, Jr., was unmasked as Sir Bugaboo after facing off with winner Snowstorm in a battle royale (in which both took turns singing the song “Somebody Watching Me,” by Rockwell). Snowstorm moves on to the semi-finals.
For Scarecrow, no one got it right. Robin Thicke thought it was Susan Sarandon. Jenny McCarthy-Wahlberg named Glenn Close. Nicole Scherzinger picked Jamie Lee Curtis. Ken Jeong guessed Parker Posey.
As for Sir Bugaboo, Jenny McCarthy Wahlberg guessed Ernie Hudson. Robin Thicke picked Keenan Ivory Wayans. Nicole Scherzinger thought it was Randy Jackson. Ken Jeong said Jordan Peele.
Ray Parker, Jr., as Sir Bugaboo and Linda Blair as Scarecrow join Chris Jericho as Bride, Adam Corolla as Avocado, George Foreman as Venus Flytrap, George Clinton as Gopher, Joey Lawrence as the Walrus, Le’Veon Bell as the Milkshake, Kat Graham as Robo Girl, Jerry Springer as Beetle, Gloria Gaynor as Mermaid, Mario Cantone as Maise, Daymond John as the Fortune Teller, Barry Williams/Christopher Knight/Mike Lookinland as the Mummies, Montell Jordan as Panther, Jeff Dunham as Pi- Rat, Chris Kirkpatrick as the Hummingbird, Eric Idle as the Hedgehog and William Shatner as the Knight as the celebrities revealed in “The Masked Singer” in Season 8.
Multiple eliminations in one episode are the norm this time out, as “The Masked Singer” adopts a new “King or Queen of Masked Singer” format. This season, three or four costumed celebrities will perform each week, but only one will win and move on to compete against two or three more people the following week.
That will continue throughout the season, as after each round, three finalists will compete in the semi-finals. The Harp survived Round 1 and is the first to make it to the semi-finals, while Lambs won Round 2 and will also be in the semis.
“The Masked Singer” enters Season 8 with costumes including “Bride,” “Avocado,” “Venus Fly Trap,” “Sir Bugaboo,” “Scarecrow,” “Hedgehog,” “Mummies.” Themed episodes include “Vegas Night,” “Comedy Roast,” “Hall of Fame,” “Muppets Night,” “Andrew Lloyd Webber Night,” “TV Themes,” “’90s Night,” “Thanksgiving” and “Fright Night. ” Guests this season include Donny Osmond, Andrew Lloyd Webber, The Muppets, Will Arnett, Leslie Jordan, Joel McHale, Tori Spelling, Jon Lovitz, Jodie Sweetin, Carrot Top, Blue Man Group, Lance Bass, Danielle Fishel, Sheila E. and Drew Carey.
The Season 8 contestants “boast a combined 32 Grammy nominations, 16 Emmy wins, 8 gold albums, 4 Golden Globe nominations, 42 books, 10 Teen Choice awards, and 5 stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.”
Here were the contestants and their performances on night nine:
Song: “Sweet But Psycho,” by Ava Max
Previous song: “Thank U, Next,” by Ariana Grande
Scary Clue: Creepy doll in a box. “Nick, that’s not one of your kids? Safety first. Always read the warnings. Now you can think of them as clues to keep the monsters away.”
Package voiceover: “If they want my crown, they’re going to have to pry it out of my frost bitten fingers. So by royal order, let me leave you with a clue that’s good for you. (A house). Are you getting warmer? I hope not!”
Previous panel guesses: Erika Jayne, Countess Luann, Kyle Richards, Lisa Rinna, Olivia Rodrigo, Sabrina Carpenter
Panel guesses: Kathryn Hahn, Heather Graham, Zooey Deschanel, Iliza Schlesinger, Aubrey Plaza, Whitney Cummings
Sir Bugaboo (Ray Parker, Jr.)
Song: “Devil with the Blue Dress On,” by Mitch Ryder & the Detroit Wheels
Likes: Trick or treaters
Clue: Won’t change
Spooky Clue: Green slime with a photo of Nicole. “Nicole, you and I have jammed before. So I’m just smiling and laughing under this costume.”
Package voiceover: “Did you hear that? It may be scared of you, but I’m used to spooky sounds. It started when I was thrown into a competition with the most monstrous names in the industry. And was told that only one of us would get out with a job. I gave it my best effort, but never dreamed I’d be the one they called. I’m sure glad they did, because my work has earned a permanent place in pop culture. But I have a confession. The whole thing was a lie. I told the world I wasn’t afraid of anything, even a scary movie. But I’m actually terrified of the dark. There’s no night light on the Masked Singer, so tonight I’m putting that fear aside so I can smoke my competition.”
Panel guesses: Ray Parker, Jr., Jordan Peele, Lil Rel, Randy Jackson
Scarecrow (Linda Blair)
Song: “Abracadabra,” by Steve Miller Band
Weakness: Highly flammable
Clue: Never rests
Spooky Clue: A witch. “The clue is staring you right in the face. Dear little kitty, which celebrity do you think I am?”
Package voiceover: “Hold on to your britches, friends, because I’m the scariest contestant in Masked Singer history. I made fans scream and critics praise me. But I had to bend over backwards to get the Academy to recognize my work. I’ve turned plenty of heads in my career. I’ve even sung on Broadway. But I’ve traded the shining bright lights of the red carpet for greener pastures, and devoted my time to saving animals. As a matter of fact, I’ve worked with over 100 rescues. But it’s you, panel, that’s going to need rescuing because I’m about to turn in a hair-raising performance. See you in your nightmares, Ken!”
Panel guesses: Bette Midler, Susan Sarandon, Anjelica Huston, Glenn Close, Neve Campbell, Courtney Cox, Parker Posey
Round 1 Semi-finalists: Harp
Previous songs: “Perfect,” by Pink; “I Have Nothing,” by Whitney Houston; “Thank You for Being a Friend” (“The Golden Girls” theme song)
Previous panel guesses: Amber Riley, Ashanti, Yvette Nicole Brown, Queen Latifah, Jordin Sparks, Fantasia, Jennifer Hudson, Jill Scott, Fantasia, Ariana DeBose
Round 2 Semi-finalists: Lambs
Previous songs: “Hot N Cold,” by Katy Perry; “Ironic,” by Alanis Morissette
Previous panel guesses: The Kardashians, Haim, The Chicks, The Corrs, Fifth Harmony, SWV