Horror film legend exorcises herself from 'The Masked Singer,' shockingly quits show

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The Scarecrow decides to leave the competition in Season 8 of 'The Masked Singer'. (Photo: Fox)
It was Thanksgiving Eve, but everyday is Halloween at The Masked Singer costumed competition. And the show was definitely still in the Halloween spirit on Wednesday, with its (presumably delayed due to the World Series) Fright Night episode - which culminated when two so talented, frightening horror icons were unmasked by the witching hour. But this very rocking horror picture show had a twisted ending when one of the contestants, the Scarecrow - who turned out to be one of horror cinema's ultimate icons - practiced a self-exorcism by exposing herself.
Only one other celebrity in Masked Singer history had ever done so (although oblivious presenter Nick Cannon, who clearly has a lot on his mind these days, claimed this was a first series): as Season 4's Mickey "The Gremlin" Rourke violently tore off his hat and suddenly stopped. This week, the Scarecrow volunteered to remove her own pumpkin head and retire - despite being less scary than Mickey and actually having a much better chance than Mickey of making it to the next round. In fact, judge Ken Jeong had just declared her rasping performance of Steve Miller's "Abracadabra" the most magical performance of the night.
"Wait, wait, wait, wait!" interjected Scarecrow just as Nick was about to announce the episode's first elimination. "I have something to say! I love this show so much. I came to tell you how much I love you and what you have all done for the world and family entertainment. But I would like to officially say goodbye and unmask and keeping these two incredible competitors going," she continued, gesturing generously at her rivals, the Snowstorm and Sir Bug-a-Boo. "These competitors are the real deal.... I have a very special reason for being here, and I do wants them to enjoy the stage and all the accolades they so deserve.”
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The shocked judges' mouths hung open so wide they looked like living, breathing rubber scream masks. But before that great pumpkin crushed itself, the judges had one last chance to discover her identity. Focusing on their scary movie clues and one specific witch clue, they surmised that it might be Bette Midler from Hocus Pocus, Susan Sarandon from The Witches of Eastwick, Angelica Huston from The Witches, Glenn Close from Fatal Attraction, Jamie Lee Curtis from Halloween, or Scream could be Neve Campbell, Courteney Cox, Drew Barrymore or Parker Posey.
But if they had only focused on the rainbow roller skate from the Scarecrow Clues pack, that would have led them to the classic 1979 film Roller Boogie and Golden Globe-winning actress Linda Blair. (Linda won that Globe for The Exorcist, not Roller Boogie, just to be clear.) The "head turns around" cue was another obvious cue that the jury kind of missed.
The judges were so stunned when Linda unscrewed her head that they looked like their own heads were spinning and spitting up pea soup. "There's a legend in that building!" Nick exclaimed. "I'm speechless! I've never been so shocked by this series as I am now," said Jenny McCarthy-Wahlberg.
Linda's performance was unexpectedly sultry and funky, which is why the jury may not have guessed it was the 63-year-old artist formerly known as Regan MacNeil. But Linda had clearly picked up rock star swag from her many past musical friends, including Rick Springfield, Deep Purple's Glenn Hughes, Neil Giraldo, Styx's Tommy Shaw and, most notably, Rick James. This really was the kind of girl you read about in new wave magazines! The LA power pop band Redd Kross even wrote a song about them.
But Linda didn't go to The Masked Singer to flaunt her pop chops or rock cred. The founder of animal rights organization Linda Blair World Heart Foundation was a woman on a mission to spread the word, and she felt that mission had been accomplished. "Let me tell you what [The Masked Singer is doing] for me and what you're doing for the world: You're taking us out of the most difficult time in history for an hour a week," she began, thanking the judges. “I deal with animals that are abused and thrown onto the streets. I have a foundation... I travel the world and do what I can to make it a better place. You all have no idea your kindness and your love. And if you can heal me, as much as I'm suffering, to try to save those who don't deserve what's happening, we can do better. And I feel like you're my family."
"Thank you Linda for making the best use of this platform," said Ken, who declared this to be his favorite revelation of all time. "We love you!"
That left last week's reigning queen, the Blizzard, and this week's other new contender, the Seuss-like four-legged Sir Bug-a-Boo. But although Sir Bug-a-Boo's soulful, rousing version of "The Devil in the Blue Dress" Jenny (who for some reason appeared to be wearing a Berlin resident's Terri Nunn Halloween costume) from his "beautiful tone, having joined Rockwells "Somebody's Watching Me" had fought the snowstorm, his dreams as a Masked Singer had been blown up or shattered. (Personally, I found he did better in combat, with a gritty rap that suited the song better.) And we found out—as Jenny suspected almost immediately—that this was Ray Parker Jr.
Well of course it was Ray! Not only did this colorful crooner sound like the "Ghostbusters" title singer and Motown legend, but three of his top clues were green slime, an old-school landline phone with three question marks on it, and even a real ghost! I swear the show's producers weren't even trying to be opaque when they slammed together Sir Bug-a-Boo's clue packet this week; they might as well have strapped a proton pack to Ray's back while they were at it. I have no idea why the other three judges even bothered to suggest that this could be Jordan Peele, Randy Jackson, Lil Rel Howery, or one of the Wayans brothers...or why Jenny dropped her last-minute guess on Ghostbusters- Actor Ernie Hudson has changed.
"Man you're such an accomplished musician and as a guitarist from the Motown days you wrote some of the biggest hits in the world - all by Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye - and really have been a fixture in this industry for such a long time," Nick said excitedly , to which Ray quipped, "And I thought I was going to be a fixture on this show! ... But I want to say, if you need someone to come on this show, and you need someone extra, who do you call?"
So that meant Blizzard held on to her crown for a second week after her stone-cold solo performance of Ava Max's "Sweet But Psycho," meaning she'll now enter the Season 8 semifinals against previous reigning queens The Harp and the Lambs . It's already abundantly clear that the harp is Amber Riley and the lambs are Wilson Phillips (the producers of The Masked Singer haven't made their clues too difficult either), but who is the Blizzard?
I'm a little less sure about this one, and the judges' guesses were everywhere; Last week they thought the blizzard could be Anna Kendrick, Heather Graham, Katherine Hahn, Iliza Shlesinger, Aubrey Plaza, Whitney Cummings or Zooey Deschanel, and this week they were throwing around random names like Olivia Rodrigo, Sabrina Carpenter and various Real Housewives. But I'm sticking with my guess from last week: I think that's comedian Nikki Glaser. It sounds like her.
But even the hints (which were admittedly a bit trickier in this case) add up. Blizzard said she had to be "cold-blooded" to survive in her male-dominated industry, and women have had a tough time in the comedy scene in the past. She said she shared the stage with Rob Lowe, and she absolutely killed that Comedy Central Rob Lowe-Roast. (One of her visual cues was also roasted chestnuts.) She mentioned "speed dating" that Nikki has been doing on Instagram Live during the pandemic, and of course Nikki is the current host of Blind Date. We saw a house and a welcome mat, references to Nikki's Welcome Home Nikki Glaser? reality series and heard the phrase "pitch-perfect," most likely a reference to her Perfect TV special. And finally, we saw a Masked Universe comic book... and, well, Nikki is a stand-up comic.
The Masked Singer will leave Halloween behind and get into the current holiday spirit with a special semifinal episode on Thursday—yes, Thanksgiving—that will determine which two contestants will advance to the grand finale of Season 8. So if you'd rather watch Lambs vs. Snowstorm vs. the Harp than Bills vs. Lions or Patriots vs. Vikings, Fox has you covered this Tofurkey Day. Until then.
Read more from Yahoo Entertainment:
MVPs of Horror: Ellen Burstyn and William Friedkin reveal the most painful scene in 'The Exorcist'
Ray Parker Jr. recalls being beaten by Detroit police as a teenager: 'The world has been heating up like this for a while'
Leslie Jordan makes final, posthumous appearance as "Masked Singer": "We can feel your love from above"
Ken Jeong on his biggest "Masked Singer" guessing mistake: "Not only am I shocked, I'm embarrassed"
Nick Cannon on leaving America's Got Talent: 'One of the best decisions I've ever made in my career'
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