WARNING: Spoilers ahead for week 2 of “The Masked Singer”
For most contestants on “The Masked Singer,” there’s at least a week or two of prep for their first number on the show. But for Night Owl, it was a literal 24-hour turnaround.
The nocturnal creature — both literally and figuratively, she jokes — got to perform two numbers on ABBA night. First, she performed “Fernando,” which earned her a spot in the Battle Royale against the returning Medusa. There, she sang “The Winner Takes It All,” but unfortunately, didn’t come out as the winner. So, Night Owl was unmasked to be none other that singer-songwriter Debbie Gibson.
And really, she was pleased with how she did, considering how quickly everything came together. Gibson was out on tour with Joey McIntyre getting ready to board her flight home when she got the call.
“It was the one year anniversary of my mom’s passing, so I was literally crying, eating pizza in the airport, which you do not do the day before you’re singing on national TV,” Gibson told TheWrap. “I was flying to Vegas, and I was told that when the plane touched down, I would know for sure that someone might need to not be on the show because of illness. And so the entire flight, I was on high alert. And of course I said yes.”
According to Gibson, she’d wanted to do the show for awhile, and had been approached already, but wasn’t able to because she was touring and promoting her own music. So when the timing worked out, she jumped at it.
“I’m like, you know what, this is so wacky. And I’m probably not going to win the show or even last beyond the day because I’m just jumping in,” she said. “But I love being the go-to girl who can save the day, and be a pro, and have some fun, and kind of not overthink or over-care and just do it. So that’s what I did.”
Like Sara Evans, who was unmasked as Mustang in Week 1, Gibson revealed that she’s a little claustrophobic, so the idea of the mask was daunting. But now that it’s come and gone, she feels even more ready for her next tour, which she announced on Monday.
“When you put your professional abilities to the test like I just got to do on ‘The Masked Singer,’ you do realize what you’re capable of,” she said. “And we realize that life’s about moments, it’s about magic. It’s about connecting with people, and it’s not always about, like, getting the highest note or doing the fanciest riff.
“I think people respond when you are authentically having fun and you’re taking risks, you know, and so this experience, doing it this way tied to that theme that’s been in my life now for awhile … I think it just shines a light on everything else I’ve been doing and that I have coming up, so it’s really exciting.”
“The Masked Singer” airs on Wednesdays on Fox at 8 p.m. ET.