Gwen Stefani & Blake Shelton Prove Romance Hasn't Made Them Less Competitive on 'The Voice' Season 12 Premiere

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With Gwen Stefani's return to The Voice this season, the singer is facing off against her boyfriend, fellow coach Blake Shelton. However, it's clear from Monday's season 12 premiere that their relationship isn't going to keep them from getting competitive.
The first round of blind auditions were a chance for the coaches to start building their teams, and from the first singer, JChosen, all four coaches -- including Adam Levine and Alicia Keys -- turned their chairs and kicked the night off with a four-way contest for the soulful hopeful.
After the coaches begged, pleaded and all but bribed the 29-year-old singer to join their teams, JChosen surprised everyone by choosing Stefani -- which blew her mind as well. However, the person on their feet clapping for her was Shelton, who couldn't help but be excited for his lady love.
Stefani also used her relationship as a bargaining chip to convince a few contestants to choose her over Shelton and Levine, explaining how she'd be able to use her connections to her boyfriend to help them navigate the world of country music.
The subject of their relationship wasn't shied away from, especially by Levine, Shelton's frenemy, who has been going head-to-head against the country crooner since the series began.
In a behind-the-scenes chat, Levine casually mentioned how much he doesn't like Shelton, but Stefani stepped in to her beau’s defense, promising the Maroon 5 frontman, "I like him so much, I'll make up for you not liking him."
The cute couple also had no problem playing up their relationship. When contestant Johnny Hayes chose Levine over Stefani, the songstress came over to sit on Shelton's lap for some emotional comfort.
Their closeness also gave them the opportunity to team up against the other coaches, usually Levine, when it came to getting hopefuls to jump on board.
When Stefani and Levine were the only two coaches to turn their chairs for one contestant, Mark Isaiah, Shelton shared some advice for the young singer: "I just think that you're meant to be on Gwen's team."
"Of course you do," Levine shot back. "You have no choice but to think that."
However, on the occasion that Shelton and Stefani both pushed their red buttons to spin their chairs, Levine made sure to call out how awkward he felt their competitive sides had become.
"When they both push, because they're dating, sometimes I feel like a third wheel in this thing," he quipped.
Only time will tell how Stefani and Shelton’s relationship will impact the way they play the game this season, or how the competition will affect their romance.
Recently, Stefani sat down with Seth Meyers where she opened up about her relationship, and how it's not going to stand in the way of her claiming victory.
"I love Blake! He is the most incredible guy. Everybody loves Blake and that’s the thing, there's no way around it, he's just a sparkly, happy amazing person. [But] he is in trouble this season. I'm about ready to get on him," Stefani said, adding that her boyfriend has already "been on the couch a few nights so far" since the show started filming. Check out the video below to hear more from the returning coach.