Hello and welcome back to the American Idol results show, where anything can happen, but usually doesn’t. Last night’s theme was Songs from the 21st Century, but it played out more like Big Top PeeWee. There were more one-trick pony acts than Barnum & Bailey could fit into all three rings, but I wouldn’t call last night’s broadcast the greatest show on earth. The remaining contestants had an opportunity to wow us with their take on current hits, but instead we got the same old performances trotted out into the ring. So grab your popcorn and your extra large drink and sit down to see the show, because it’s time to put one of those tired horses out to pasture. Disclaimer: No ponies were harmed in the making of last night’s show. Randy thought they were dogs, Simon didn’t like any of their tricks, Ryan tried to save them from the glue factory and Paula had to be gently led away after she was discovered trying to mount the pretty one.
Ryan prances out in a gray suit and striped tie looking happier than he has for the past few weeks. Maybe it’s Jessica Sierra or a dissipated, wan-looking Justin Guarini (sheesh, he looks like a vampire) clapping in the audience, or maybe it’s the “Ryan Seacrest is My American Idol” sign waving. I guess Seacrest needs love too. The judges are even smiling. Paula’s hair extensions are growing like kudzu, but she looks sober. Simon is paying attention and Randy exhibits none of the surliness he’s resorted to lately. All is right in Idol world.
Instead of launching directly into the recap of last night’s show or bragging about how many votes were cast, we get a film clip, “An Idol’s Life is a Busy One.” They put on make-up, get their picture taken, rehearse and talk to the press. And smile a lot. They also get to see FOX’s new movie Ice Age: the Meltdown. Gee, I thought FOX only served as a lackey to the right and produced lowest-common-denominator sitcoms (with the exception of Arrested Development), I didn’t know they made movies. I really need to get out more.
Anyway, Lisa says the idols are one big happy family, and before I can ponder the significance of that statement we’re back to the show. Whoops! Never mind, at three minutes and 15 seconds we’re on to our first commercial!
Obligatory Ford Commercial
This week’s offering is set to Give A Little Love. I can’t help myself, I love to see the idols. The song is a little too happy and fluffy but the commercial redeems itself when Taylor dances with an elderly woman and does his trademark grimace. Well, not really, but I like Taylor. I also like Bucky strolling along playing his guitar and Elliott with his spazzy white-boy moves. Mandisa really needs to get out of those jeans and into some support garments, but she’s still a gorgeous woman. All in all, it was just aiight.
Ears Don’t Lie
Tonight’s musical guests are Shakira and Wyclef singing Hips Don’t Lie, presumably to show the girls how to shake their bootie and the guys how to pose. They may or may not have been lip-synching but the moves were definitely live. Shakira wears harem pants and a sparkly halter and does a belly-dance. *sigh* Disclaimer number two: I don’t know Xtina from Shakira, so I don’t know if this is her common garb or not. It looks sluttish, yet oddly comfortable. Half a dozen women dressed in white take the stage to show off their bellies, too. Wyclef jumps out into the audience and comes up behind the judge’s table to sing to Paula, then turns to Simon and sings right up in his face. Simon sits rigidly with a fixed smile but I’m sure he’s relieved when Wyclef skips away. It’s like a mini stare-off; Wyclef is louder but Simon looks meaner.
Somebody’s Got To Go…
And now it’s time for the recap of last night’s performances. Oddly enough, Ryan doesn’t mention the number of votes cast this week, probably because the amount was less spectacular than it has been recently. The recap highlighted just how second-rate some of last night’s efforts were.
Ryan is at the podium and he’s ready to get down to business. He tells the audience to look at the bottom row: Mandisa, Chris, Kellie, Taylor and Paris. They are all safe.
After a commercial for Shakira singing the same song I heard her sing three minutes ago and an American Idol game – another one? – we’re back with the top row: Elliott, Lisa, Ace, Katharine and Bucky.
A Shocker In The Bottom Three
Elliott sang I Don’t Wanna Be. The judges disagreed on the arrangement but loved his voice. He’s safe. Elliott clowns a little with his parents in the audience and gives Chris a fist tap. He’s in the cool guy club for now.
Lisa sang Because of You. The judges were not impressed with her performance. She’s been in the bottom three for the past three weeks, and she’s back there again. Lisa shows no surprise at all, just smiles as she takes the center stage.
Ace sang Drops of Jupiter. The judges were disappointed in his song choice. Ryan reminds Ace he’s been in the bottom three before, and he’s back there again. He smiles a little smile and collects a man-hug from Seacrest on his way to join Lisa.
That leaves Katharine and Bucky. Katharine sang The Voice Within and the judges were impressed that she sang an Xtina song. Bucky sang Real Good Man, and the judges didn’t think the vocals were up to par. Oh well, I liked Bucky’s performance last night, but I knew he was going to be in the bottom three. SNAP! It’s Katharine that’s in the bottom three tonight. She looks a little shocked, but not as much as Bucky, who seems afraid to move for fear Ryan will say “Just kidding, Katharine! Bucky Covington, come on down!”
So Who’s It Gonna Be?
Katharine joins Lisa and Ace center stage, but of course there’s a commercial break before Ryan can announce the loser.
After the break Ryan announces that he can send one of the contestants back to the couches, and it’s…Ace. Ace does his now familiar bow to the camera. He hugs Lisa but Katharine sloughs him off when he turns to her. Don’t hug me, Mr. Man, I’m not supposed to be here.Oh, just wait ‘til you’ve been in the bottom three a few times, Kathy, you’ll take all the hugs you can get.
Ryan asks Simon for a reaction to the bottom two and he takes the opportunity to tell Katharine that when he watched it back, her performance wasn’t nearly as good as he thought it was, but then everyone sucked last night. Ryan reminds him that he’s given Katharine a lot of praise, (Oh, just act like Lisa’s not even standing there) and he replies that the public knows best and he has absolutely no problem with [who is in] the bottom three tonight. Katharine is still shocked.
Ryan asks Paula if she has any words for Lisa and Katharine, especially Katharine. Paula just wants to remind everyone to vote for two solid hours for their favorites because nobody’s safe.
Randy says that fans will transfer their votes to other contestants when their favorites are out, and everyone should hope those votes go to them. Or something like that. My tape crinkles and garbles Randy’s words so I can’t really understand what he’s saying. Maybe that’s a good thing.
The person leaving us tonight is…Lisa Tucker. Lisa’s smile never falters, and as her back-story begins to play Ryan calls her “One of the greatest contestants I’ve ever seen on American Idol.” Ryan is a genuinely nice guy, but he’d probably be the male version of Paula if he was ever allowed to judge.
Paris begins to cry, was Lisa her roommate? Whatever, tears are streaming down Paris’ face, but then the camera cuts to Kellie and she’s smiling. It seems a little odd to be smiling when one of your “family” is voted off, but I’ll give her the benefit of the doubt.
Lisa sings us out, just as poised as she’s been since the beginning of the show. Maybe if she’d shown more emotion, both with the audience and with her singing, she wouldn’t have been eliminated. The other contestants gather around to join her as she sings. Everyone looks grim with the exception of Kellie, who’s still grinning away. Maybe she’s smiling because she knows next weeks theme is…Country. Yuck.
Okay, that’s it for the show, but I can’t help speculating on what the idols will sing next week. Will Chris do another cover of a rock band doing a country tune? Will Bucky do my all time favorite (okay, my only favorite) country song Up Against the Wall Redneck Mother? Tune in next week for Idols Gone Country.
I shudder to think who next week’s musical guest will be. Willie Nelson, anyone? Email me at Dinahann@fansofrealitytv.com