Yoo-hoo, Nick Cannon, where are youuuuu? At this point in The Masked Singer, you know what’s going on: Your favorite host has been MIA after testing positive for the coronavirus right before season 5 was scheduled to start filming. Niecy Nash is holding down the fort until Nick returns, and nope, sorry, we still don’t know when exactly that’ll be (although my money’s on April 14—more on that below). What we *do* know is that the executives at FOX have really outdone themselves this time around when it comes to the “celebrities,” the wild card characters, and, um, whatever Cluedle-Doo is. In short, HALP!
To stave off further Robopine-induced nightmares, let’s review everything we know about Nick’s absence and when you can expect him to return.
Why Hasn’t Nick Cannon Been Hosting So Far?
Unfortunately, Nick tested positive for COVID-19 shortly before production began on Masked Singer season 5, meaning he wasn’t able to participate in filming the first few episodes. Production started on Thursday, February 4, and Nick’s rep told Variety that he’d been quarantining and resting. Meanwhile, FOX confirmed that he’d be back on the show at a later date.
Even though Nick has not been physically present so far this season (OR HAS HE??), he’s made sure the judges don’t forget about him, not even for a second. During the season premiere, he left everyone a “jar of shame”—basically, whenever the judges fall back on one of their overused guesses (aka Lindsay Lohan, Bjork, Jamie Foxx, or Johnny Knoxville), they have to put money in the jar. Cute.
And Nick’s clearly been watching along from home, as evidenced by his very enthusiastic social media activity. Every single week without fail, Nick (or his team, lol) live-tweets up a storm during the episode, posing profound questions like the following:
Got It. So When Will Nick Be Back?
Not tonight! Nick is nowhere to be seen in the trailer for tonight’s new ep, and I’m thinking that FOX will def make Nick’s return a THING once the time comes:
Although Niecy Nash does say, “I’m about to change the game up completely,” AND WHO KNOWS WHAT THAT MIGHT MEAN!
As I mentioned before, the specific date that Nick is expected to be back onstage is still TBD—although it sounds like it’ll be sometime in the second half of The Masked Singer season 5 (which may be soon!). Here’s what executive producer James Breen said back in early March:
“Nick rejoins toward the second half of the season. I won’t be too specific about how many shows, but Niecy kicks things off.”
How-ev-er, the name of next week’s episode (airing on April 14) is “Group A Finals - In the Nick of Time!” is giving me major Nick-Cannon-returns vibes, no?!?!
Last thing: It’s worth noting that Breen did not technically specify in ~what capacity~ Nick will be “rejoining” the season, which brings me to this theory:
Nick Is Cluedle-Doo (a Theory)
Considering the way the Cluedle-Doo footage is filmed—in a separate area away from the main stage—it’s possible that these segments were produced completely independently from the show. As in, once Nick recovered from COVID-19, he could have shot the Cluedle-Doo clips. Or! *puts on tinfoil hat* Nick really only has to show up to Cluedle-Doo’s unmasking; until then, a body double could be lurking inside the rooster costume.
For what it’s worth, fans are reaaally into this theory—in fact, they’ve been convinced pretty much since the second Cluedle-Doo showed up onscreen:
How Long Will Niecy Nash Serve as Guest Host?
Another question with another TBD answer—although it feels safe to assume that she’ll be on the show until Nick is back, duh. Breen said she “stepped in pretty last minute” and “immediately had her own chemistry with the panel.” Meanwhile, Masked Singer judge Nicole Scherzinger said, “Niecy’s a boss. She’s a queen. She’s so fast but fun, relatable.”
Niecy spoke about filling in for Nick, saying:
“I have never felt so welcomed. It’s not like we started together. I just walked in the door and every single person supported me and was so kind. The producers, my hats off to you because they gave me such a beautiful surprise. I’m recently married. They surprised everybody, not just me, but I loved my surprise. They gave me a beautiful video message from my new wife and I wanted to cry my fake eyelashes off. I was sad to go, I really was.”
She also told ET this sweet thing about the opportunity: “I was honored to stand in the gap and just be a tiny placeholder for him, for his franchise and his series.” Aww.
Once we know more information about Nick’s return, we will update this post. Until then, keep an eye on Cluedle-Doo, just in case. 👀
You love spiraling over The Masked Singer. So do we. Let’s obsess together.
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