Pet Controversy on The Voice
On past seasons of NBC's The Voice, singer CeeLo Green has displayed his penchant for flashy clothes, elaborate sets and—animals? During Green's four seasons on the show, he has had two sidekicks: one furry, the other feathered.
His first faux-pet was Purrfect, a fluffy, white Persian cat rented from a company called Benay's Bird and Animal Rentals. Purrfect is a rescue cat that is rented out at the impressive price of $350 a day, which includes the cost of trainers, at $45 per hour.
The first time I saw CeeLo stroking Purrfect the cat in the judge's high-backed, electronic-swivel chair, I immediately thought of Dr. Claw, the villain from Inspector Gadget. Others have made comparisons to Austin Powers' Dr. Evil (before the whole cryogenic freezing thing—Purrfect is far from hairless).
Villain references and by-the-hour pet ownership were all fun and games until the third season, when Green unexpectedly replaced Purrfect with Lady, a Moluccan Cockatoo. CeeLo claims that he found her "flying around in a fantasy.” The move drew the ire of animal activists, which point out that Moluccans are endangered in the wild and can be quite difficult to keep as pets. In fact, they say, the Moluccan tends to self-mutilate when in captivity.
In a clever attempt to diffuse some of the drama, the show released a promotional video of allegedly "lost" auditions to be CeeLo's pet. Several dogs, a boa constrictor and, of course, Purrfect are featured.
Green's back for season five and he's brought Purrfect and her 55,500+ Twitter followers with him.
Both animals added to Green's eccentric persona and got viewers talking, but what do you think—is the rent-a-pet concept a good one?