The Truth About Adam Levine And Blake Shelton's Relationship

Adam Levine and Blake Shelton's bromance is truly TV gold. Their constant fighting on The Voice — which ranges from petty name-calling to Shelton once tweeting out Levine's actual private cellphone number — is more entertaining than most of the musical performances on the show. And the two apparently hit it off right away. 

"I was instantly very taken by him 'cause he was definitely not your typical country artist," Levine told People. "He was not a cookie-cutter guy, and the second we met, we were friends. All of the bulls**t that we do comes from a place of love."

Shelton said of the bromance, "I have a man crush on Adam. It blows me away people can pick up on that just by watching that on television" (via MTV News). He added, "I want to kiss him. I want to kiss him so bad. I don't care if it's mutual or not ... He's sexy, is the word I'm using."

That said, the friendship between Shelton and Levine hasn't been without its issues. Aside from their on-air bickering, a source revealed to Life & Style in October 2017 that the kinship had "cooled off" and "seemed forced" when the duo weren't filming. So what really gives? Well, it sounds like their friendship is pretty normal, despite their infamy, with ebbs, flows, and a healthy rivalry.

They're super competitive

Levine and Shelton love to give each other a hard time on the set of The Voice, with an insider telling Us Weekly that Levine is, by far, the most competitive coach on the series. In November 2017, Shelton — who, at the time of this writing, has won the show six times — joked on Live With Kelly And Ryan that his secret to victory is "cheating," but he later admitted that the bulk of his success is likely due to the rabid loyalty of his country fanbase.

When Levine's contestant Jordan Smith won season nine, Levine — who's been victorious for three seasons — couldn't wait to rub it in Shelton's face. "It's really quite beautiful because Jordan gets to win The Voice and I get to tear Blake apart for the next six months," Levine bragged to Entertainment Tonight.

Levine and Shelton's rivalry is so notorious, in fact, that NBC recorded separate promos for them for season 13 comparing them to Real Housewives. Drama!

Levine was the first to find out about Shelton's secret romance

Blake Shelton and Gwen Stefani are the king and queen of PDA, whether they're hanging all over each other at awards shows, drooling over each other on The Voice, or just constantly posting about one another on social media. As a result, it's pretty surprising that they were able to keep their romance relatively quiet in the early days of their courtship — in fact, they were even able to keep it a secret from Adam Levine for a while. 

Levine told The Howard Stern Show (via People) in October 2017 that Shelton and Stefani actually lied to Levine and the rest of their The Voice colleagues about their romance "for a long time." However, Levine had suspected something was up between the then-newly single pair but only figured it out for sure once they all went to dinner together and he caught Stefani and Shelton sneaking a smooch.

"They kissed or something — they did something crazy," Levine said. "Imagine if two of your friends who don't hook up started kissing. It was something that was a giveaway and I was like, 'I f***ing knew it!'"

Shelton has wanted to kill Levine at least once

Shelton admitted to The Tennessean that his friendship with Levine makes as little sense to them as it does to the rest of the world, but they have a rule that many couples also share: They never go to bed angry.

"We are constantly at each other's throats, and sometimes we really do get mad at each other," Shelton said. "We're those two guys you knew in high school where we have this bond that is unexplainable. It brings out the best and worst in both of us. It truly is an explosive relationship." He added that he and Levine know exactly what to do and say to get under one another's skin, but that they're ultimately like brothers. While they may bicker and fight, they're always there to support one another in times of need.

"I've stayed at the man's house with him," Shelton revealed. "He's one of the best friends that I have, but I still want to kill him sometimes."

Shelton and Kelly Clarkson made Levine cry

Blake Shelton and fellow The Voice coach Kelly Clarkson are close friends — so close that he was originally slated to officiate her wedding to Brandon Blackstock. So, it'd make sense that they'd like to team up to troll fellow coach Adam Levine.

In March 2018, Shelton revealed on The Tonight Show that he and Clarkson attended a Maroon 5 concert near Shelton's Oklahoma home on New Year's Eve to "make fun of" Levine at the show. Shelton revealed that they all had a few drinks and that they'd hired a designated driver to get them all home safely — and that the designated driver got pulled over by cops en route.

"Not that we don't respect the police, but we knew we hadn't done anything wrong," Shelton said. "So, you can be a little cocky, or you know, at that point ... Adam didn't see it that way because Adam is from Los Angeles, where you don't talk back to the police. And in Oklahoma, if you've got a good point, you do sometimes, you know?"

Shelton and Clarkson sassed the cop in a big way (but a friendly one), which made Levine really upset, with Shelton claiming that Levine was convinced they were going to jail. Shelton mimicked Levine's voice cracking and tearing up, saying, "Kelly, shut up! Shut up!"

According to Shelton, it wasn't the only time he'd made Levine cry. He told The Tennessean, "Until someone is crying, it doesn't stop."

They beefed over each other's Sexiest Man Alive honors

People magazine named Adam Levine the Sexiest Man Alive in 2013 — much to Shelton's chagrin — so when Shelton got the title in November 2017, he made sure to rub it in Levine's face. "I can't wait to shove this up Adam's a**," Shelton cracked to People. "As proud as I am and honored that you guys asked me, that's really the only thing I care about."

The sexiness beef didn't end there. Levine said on Jimmy Kimmel Live in January 2018 that when Shelton was named Sexiest Man Alive, the "What Lovers Do" singer blew up an image of his own 2013 cover, framed it, and sent it to Shelton.

"This is not a cheap practical joke, by the way; it's a lot more expensive than I care to admit — and I sent it to [Shelton's] house in Oklahoma," Levine said. "He put it in his barn." He added, "He's not sexy! It also made it feel worse that I got it ... I guess I'm not as sexy as I thought I was."

If either one of them leaves The Voice, the other will follow

The Voice judges' chairs can be a revolving door ... with two exceptions: Adam Levine and Blake Shelton, who've been around since day one. Though Shelton and Levine are constantly beefing on the set of the show, fans and staff alike know that the show wouldn't be the same without either one of them — and the two bickering coaches are reportedly using their chemistry to their advantage in salary negotiations with producers.

In January 2018, a source told Radar Online that Levine was itching to quit the show to stay home and be a family man with wife Behati Prinsloo and his two daughters. The source revealed, "If Adam leaves, Blake is going to follow because he has been over it for a while. Ever since Gwen left, Blake has been ready to go."

Shelton said as much himself. He told Country Countdown USA in 2015, "It's never even come up where Adam and I aren't there ... I've told them if that ever comes up, I'm just gone period."

The alleged reluctance to return to the show actually helped Shelton and Levine's paychecks.

A source told Radar Online that once word got out that the boys wanted out, Levine and Shelton were each offered a $5 million bonus to stay on The Voice through 2020 because execs feared that ratings would take a nosedive without their bickering bromance.

They like each other's ladies

Though Levine and Shelton can often be at one another's throats, their relationships with one another's significant others are totally amicable.

In May 2016, when Levine's wife, supermodel Behati Prinsloo, was pregnant with their first child, daughter Dusty Rose, she posed for a silly snap with Shelton. In the photo, Prinsloo and Shelton can be seen each showing off their respective bellies. (Hers was from her actual baby bump, while Shelton's was likely from Southern cooking and booze.) Levine posted the photo to his Instagram page, writing, "Met these two sweet pregnant ladies today. Good luck @blakeshelton and @behatiprinsloo!"

Levine, meanwhile, is a huge fan of Stefani. He told The Howard Stern Show (via People) that the "Sweet Escape" singer is "the best" and the he counts her and Shelton among his very closest friends. Of course, he also added that he outright told Shelton that he "can't believe [he] gets to be with Gwen Stefani. It's just not f***ing right!"

The bromance is real

For as much of a hard time as Adam Levine and Blake Shelton give one another, there is a lot of genuine affection between them. It was never more apparent than when Shelton spoke at Levine's Hollywood Walk of Fame induction ceremony in February 2017. 

After saying he was disappointed that the speech wasn't a roast, Shelton told the crowd (via Entertainment Tonight), "If you would have told me that this guy would end up being one of my best friends, I would have called you crazy ... But I have seen a lot of ups and downs, and I have never had a more honest and loyal friend than Adam Levine through my personal journey." He added, "We all know he is a huge star with music and movies and television, but I am happy to see him get this, because he is my friend and nobody is more shocked — I mean proud — than I am that he is going to have a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame forever. Congratulations, brother. I love you."