I happened upon a few popular polls regarding American Idol contestants over the last few days that had me predicting something for tonight. When asked who was there favorite, it wasn’t any of the anointed ones – not Danny or Adam or Lil; it wasn’t the obvious judge -picks of Jasmine or Megan. It was Anoop … the one they grudgingly let on to the Wild Card round add-ons, and have been obviously annoyed with since day one. So it was obvious they would be overly harsh with him. Another poll talked about ‘most over-rated’ and guess who won THAT title? Jasmine – one of the judges pet projects. So it was clear that they would be very careful about what they said to her so she would sail through. That doesn’t sound fair? Well, it is a fact of life made more obvious than ever this year because this … is American Idol Season 8!
So we have thirteen contestants and twelve numbers owned … and apparently the number for 1-866-IDOLS-13 is owned by a sex phone operator. So the final performer got the number 1-866-IDOLS-36. The ‘twist’ – two folks are going home. But that really isn’t a twist since the schedule is already set for the season and extending it would require extensive renegotiation since everyone would want a pile of cash.
Quote of the week: “It’s fine being artistic, just not on this show.” – Simon.
Couple of thoughts on this week’s theme: Michael Jackson. First off, isn’t this the guy that every time someone tries to do one of his songs they are warned that it is all iconic and shouldn’t be touched? On the other side, isn’t it sad that you know the person they are introducing as having sold hundreds upon hundreds of millions of records is doing this strictly for the money?
Let’s get right to the show:
Lil Rounds – “The Way You Make Me Feel.”
The original had a strong and snapping beat that pulsed through … this one is loose and flowing … and doesn’t work. But she sings in tune and the judges cards tell them to gush, so they gush.
Scott MacIntyre – “Keep The Faith.”
No clue about this song, but again, the puppet judges gush and gloss over out of tune moments.
Danny Gokey – “P.Y.T.”
He sang very well and deserves to keep going. While the praise is effluent, they needed to ‘keep it real’ to look like they aren’t totally pandering so they disagree amongst themselves about his dancing.
Michael Sarver – “You Are Not Alone.”
Probably his best singing since the audition.
Jasmine Murray — “Remember The Time.”
Still don’t think she should be here, but the judges are determined to keep her so while they hint around the fact that the whole thing was out of tune they only praise her. As I predicted.
Kris Allen – “Remember The Time.”
Vaguely good … but terribly forgettable. He may go this round, but it will be based on the ‘chick appeal’ and so he won’t last too long.
Allison Irehata “Give In To Me.”
The ‘cute teen’ slot is filled, and she isn’t a boy, and she is a rock singer, so while the judges keep praising her – and despite the fact that she is a much better singer than Jasmine – her days are numbered.
Anoop Dasai – “Beat It.”
Anoop did a decent job, certainly not his best stuff, and showed discomfort traveling the stage while singing. But the butt-whooping he got was way out of whack … but again, just as I predicted.
Jorge Nunez – “Never Gonna Say Goodbye”
Nicely executed … but excruciatingly boring. The judges talk him down, he is in trouble.
Megan Joy Corkrey – “Rockin’ Robin”
She has transcended being a bad singer and performer to being a spectacle … she should be gone already, but will be in trouble this week.
Adam Lambert – “Black or White.”
He would definitely fit into the glam-rock scene of the 70′s, but be laughed off for being to pop-ish. He executes well enough, but it is all so over-the-top … I don’t really like him but the judges do … and he is safe for a few weeks.
Matt Giraud – “Human Nature.”
Another nicely done performance, and the judges are all over him.
Alexis Grace – “Dirty Diana”
I considered her safe … but by getting the odd phone number she might have problems.
My prediction for the bottom three:
And from that, Megan is safe and the other two go home.
Or not … because Simon talked about ‘new rules’ being introduced. I will use my magic sphere to guess that whatever rule they put in place gives the judges / producers more power to protect people like Michael Johns and Carly (<400 sold) Smithson from being booted after spending so much time and money prepping them. We shall see …
So now we’re into the typical cycle – talk about the night, recap the previous night, group song, get into some results, guest singer, more results, another guest, and then the final results.
Here is how it went:
- After all the introductions, we find out that the ‘new rule’ is (as predicted) a way for the judges to save their faves but only as a ‘one-time’ thing … they showed some who might have been saved, but only Michael Johns was one the judges pushed – the others are all revisionist history. I mean, they own Jennifer Hudson going as much as anyone for failing to try … and Chris Daughtry? Now that he has sold much more than Soul Patrol and McPheever combined they want a piece of the pie? C’mon, they tried actively for *weeks* to get rid of him … keep it real, dawgs! It is all just so they can say ‘see, America, you are stupid, listen to us’.
- Group night is a Jackson 5 medley, with contestants alternating helping lead Scott from place to place … it worked pretty well. Well, better than expected.
- Ryan works through the top row, telling Michael, Alison, Kris and Matt they are safe, and inviting Megan and Jasmine to the center of the stage.
- Jasmine is going home! After singing again (still out of tune) the judges say ‘thanks but no thanks’ to saving her.
- Next up is Kanye West … and he was terrible – he is neither a great singer nor a strong rhythmic rapper, and I continue to have no idea about the appeal. His performance is lousy as well. If this is the best pop music has to offer … they need help.
- Ryan works his way through the bottom row, making Alexis, Danny, Adam and Lil safe and sending Anoop and Jorge to the center. But, of course, we have a ways to go …
- Kelly Clarkson is next, singing the first single from her new CD – My life Would Suck Without You (no, really!). I’m not a fan of the song, but she is much better than Kanye.
- Finally, Jorge is sent home … and after singing Simon says ‘no … sorry’ to helping him out.
So we’re down to 11. The judges got themselves a ‘get out of jail free’ card, but their praise failed to save Jasmine. My wife wanted Megan gone, but the rest of us would rather have her stay for the hilarity factor. Anoop was also safe, showing that the judges can sway but not control the vote. All in all I am fairly satisfied with the results.
This was a brutal week – it was nearly unwatchable at times, and I honestly didn’t know if I would make it. I’m just taking it one lousy week at a time. I’ll see you next week … or not.