Alright, let's get reviewing! We begin with no other but the winner of the first season of the Masked Singer US, Monster! For those new to the franchise, this Sully/Mike lovechild is pretty much the main mascot, the Pikachu of TMS - probably the reason almost every country has its own monster mask, and definitely the reason there are so many extra monster masks later down the line in the US.
Design-wise, Monster is strikingly different from the other masks we'll see later on - constructed like a furry cylinder and more evokative of a gigantic plush doll instead of a fancily dressed anthropomorph. I've been watching TMS for a little while now, and while I am tired and wary of any "kid-appealing" mask that pops up (more on that later), I must admit Monster himself, in the context of the first season of The Masked Singer, was a pretty unique design that stood on its own, so I'll call him fair for his day.
Now, monster design-wise, Monster is like a huge furry aqua peanut with two fuzzy horns, two ears, three claws on each arm and one big (but not huge) cyclopian eye. I enjoy the pleasant color scheme on his colorful horns, his goofy buck teeth and especially the fact he canonically wears little people's shoes (yes, yes, they are probably to give the celebrity inside a break from the cumbersomeness of the costume, but still)
But under that fluffy mascot-like appearance, hides a powerful, rich, sentimental voice! Monster is probably one of the first examples in the Western of a "silly costume with a great voice", which is always a welcome thing.
His performances are quite varied, with him trying to surprise the audience with each episode he stayed on with songs from different genres: rocking songs, party songs, slow sentimental songs (even if I personally believe Stay is his weakest). He even does some funky leg shuffles on some performances! However, it's possible they will blend in with his fellow competitor's performances. S1 just started that strong.
Overall, I understand how Monster won, and how the TMS franchise this side of the world latched on his concept so hard. But on the other hand, I can also understand people liking other masks better, either because of their design or voices or a combination of both.
Personally, I find Monster alright, but I'll give him an extra half point because he was the first of many things that became TMS staples.