masked singerRatings for the finale fell for the second year in a row as Rhino took the title and Busted singer Charlie Simpson was revealed.
ITV1’s surreal singing competition features mysterious celebrities performing in elaborate costumes, whose identities are revealed when they lose a vote.
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The Simpsons revealed the winner of Season 4 on Saturday night with an average viewership of 4.8 million viewers, a significant drop from previous series finales.
The finals peaked at 5.7 million viewers, with Kaiser Chiefs frontman Ricky Wilson finishing runner-up in Phoenix, while third place Fawn revealed the identity of All Saints star Natalie Appleton.
Viewership for the 2022 finale dipped, averaging 6.3 million viewers.
It was the second consecutive decline after the last episode in 2021 averaged 8.6 million viewers – although ratings were generally higher during the previous two national lockdowns.
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Last year’s competition was won by Natalie Imbruglia as Panda, Joss Stone as Sausage in 2021, and Nicola Roberts as Queen Bee as the first Masked Singer winner – making Simpson the first male winner of a singing competition.
The spin-off series Masked Dancer won Louis Smith as Carwash and Heather Morris as Scissors.
Masked Singer judges Mo Gilligan, Davina McCall, Rita Ora and Jonathan Ross guest judge the final alongside comedian Lee Mack, after footballer Peter Crouch returned to the panel as a semi-final guest.
Crouch replaced Gilligan as the masked dancer’s most recent jury member during the comedian’s tour.
Simpson, who was guessed as Rhino by McCall early in the competition, said of his victory: “My bandmates at Busted and Fightstar knew it was me within the first two seconds of hearing Rhino sing. When you spend so much Time is on stage with people, and having spent so much time in the studio, it’s hard for them not to understand it right away.”
He added: “Rhino has its own emoji on most phones, so I often see people texting me, which I find funny.”