I enjoy the opening montage of the show auditions. If the rest of the show is crap, at least you have watched a pretty good intro.
The show begins again with Debbie giving the last minute pep talk to the 24 for the final time “for a while”. The clothes are again mercifully dance slouch, with Ray given the best clothes. Their final ‘Ready to Work’ is a testament to Debbie’s boot camp. The cast could probably step into a Broadway show without any problem. That is not the impression you got at all the first time the group performed. A big improvement for all 24.
Joey is either getting better looking, or has gotten a better stylist. It’s the Italian thing I guess, however he is dressed like a funeral director.
This show’s version of what they are looking for, is a singer who can dance, with personality. It changes every week. I think they make it up as they go.
First up is Harlemm Lee, who has thankfully dropped the creepy swim goggles. He cries in the intro claiming his only friends were the radio and records. Please don’t end up like the MJ freak show kid.
It’s spooky that he picks a Jackson song, but at least it’s Janet, not Michael. He sports a ‘come to your senses’ T, and I’m not really sure if that is directed at the judges, or to a political statement.
Johnny says he “makes me a believer”
T-shirt worked on him
Carnie is again ‘freaked out’ and claims he ‘knocked me off my chair’
JoJo says he is proof dynamite comes in small packages. I guess that’s a good thing.
Debbie kindly tells him he is what the competition needs, and Harlemm cries again. Fast forward to the future, and if this guy gets a Grammy or a Tony, he is gonna puddle up the stage big time.
Carolyn Zeppa is next. She talks about her mom and cries. She talks about getting teased and cries. I thought only comics were inspired by crappy childhoods.
I didn’t even catch the name of the song. Blah Blah Blah from the musical Fosse. Big note to the others - the judges are not theater people. Obscure numbers are not going to get their attention.
I assume the dance barre on stage has something to do with the setting of the song, but again I’ve never seen Fosse. The judges are puzzled too. It seems more dance than singing and it just smacked of beauty contest performance. (When “Somewhere my love” starts ringing in the back of my brain, a la Sandra Bullocks ‘Miss Congeniality’, I know it’s triggered that thought in my head)
J- Entertaining performance but you held back
C- You were nervous, I wanted more song – it was a weird song
JJ-I liked it, and you even brought a pole out.
Debbie corrects him huffily “it’s a dance barre”
Debbie, not one of the judges and the majority of the viewing audience had a clue what they were seeing…Joey consoles young Carolyn.
I have to wonder who these people are who are helping these people pick the music for their display of talent. It’s really hit and miss. I’m thinking if someone isn’t aggressive, they get bullied into doing a show tune. It’s suggested no matter how inappropriate it may be.
The prizes are announced and it’s again a “cash prize” so that must be the real deal.
Johannes (Joey) Williams takes the stage next. He has to use the full name because with Joey F and JoJo, it might get confusing. He tells his story of having ADD, and how the arts helped him work through it. He performs an LLCool J rap. Strange choice, because he has to refer to LL in the first person numerous times and did not change it to his own name. It may just be that he performed it, because he has memorized it from frequent listening. His dancing is decent. As we’ve seen before one, or the other isn’t enough to get the nod. It has to be both.
Johnny- Proud he did the performance he did because apparently something big went down in rehearsal.
Carnie- Great attitude came though and did a great job.
JoJo – again alludes to whatever happened in rehearsal and adds he had put a bad day behind him.
I have to wonder what happened, but having a son with ADD myself, I can well imagine how hard this is.
Lauren Hildebrandt tells us she is one of the zillions of actor/ whatever’s that have moved to LA. She has been there eight months and has only recently found a boyfriend. She announces cheerfully on primetime she would dump him for Fame. Aww, how sweet.
They have her performing ‘Hit Me with a Hot Note’ another seldom seen show tune. Lauren however carries off both the dance and singing parts. She looks nothing at all like her cast photo, in fact she looks much older. Maybe the grind has aged her a bit.
It’s beginning to age me too.
J- Ooo you hit me with strong vocals- love your ( ragdress cut short in pieces) outfit.
C- a bit shaky, but a powerful voice
JJ- I’m a radio loser- you made me think I could do it.
Translated - I have no F’in clue what I just saw, but you sang loud and didn’t trip so I guess that’s good.
Debbie looks at the judges, and mouths “classical jazz” to them like a third grade teacher.
Somehow, the performance was not what I expected at all. I need a Debbie class too I guess.
Next on stage is Sean Dolan. A Texas Mormon, which I’m really sorry, I don’t mean to be rude, is an oxymoron. He got into the biz when he saw N’Sync perform to a group of screaming groupies. This earns a smile and high five from Joey. He performs Senorita by Justin Timberlake. Sean is very cute, but I’m beginning to wonder about the monitoring system in the theater, as he sings the whole song off key. It’s as if he can’t hear the music. Other performers have gone off key similarly, so I’m really wondering. Check it out will ya?
His dance is really N’Sync-ey in tone, and he is adequate not great.
Johnny – is pleased the girls got up and screamed. He isn’t much worried over that silly talent thing, but does note he’s a little shaky.
Carnie observes he is cute and that his dance makes her go WooHoo !
JoJo- notes that he too is from the lone star state and that Sean makes him proud. He will watch him closely.
He earns a kiss from Mama Debbie.
Moy is last one up tonight. She already has 2 degrees from prestigious Spelman College, and was heading for law school, when performing pulled her away. She claims to keep running away from it.
She performs Beyonce’s ‘Work it Out’. Moy is an extremely pretty girl and performs really well. The thought runs though my head, that with her academic success and talent she really does have everything.
J- Wants some Moy and adds, “You work”
C- You look really cool, you killed and you have a gorgeous voice
JJ- says next time he interviews Beyonce; he is going to tell her to watch out for Moy
Debbie tells her she burned the house down.
Moy herself is very sweet, and is thrilled to be next to Debbie and Joey.
The group performance dredges up Boogie Wonderland. If it weren’t for these performance driven reality shows, I might have forgotten all about Earth Wind and Fire. They give the song a strange Broadway type opening. Harlemm and Moy stand out. I’m distracted (as I usually am) by Laurens weird pink hi-top shoes.
As they stand for the verdict slightly smirking, I’m thinking again, how much it resembles a beauty pageant. Contestants standing side by side quietly awaiting their fate. It’s way better than the blaring music of AI anyway.
The judges all like each other too. Just once they need a bit of Simon, I think.
Moy, Harlemm and Lauren advance. Debbie again walks off the losers.
Move along no drama to be seen here.
Next week, tune in for the start of the competition. Let’s hope Debbie finally lets Joey host the show. It could be great or awful.
Kicks and Kisses to firstname.lastname@example.org Cash and chocolate accepted for bribes.