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Last week we said goodbye to piano man Patrick Hall and cheesy Bobby Bennett. It’s coming down to the wire now, and two more of these talented men will be eliminated before the week is over. I hope all these guys are bringing their best games to the Idol stage tonight.
Ryan starts out the show by telling us we’re going to hear songs tonight that we won’t hear on any other show. That is, except for Dancing with the Stars, Skating with Celebrities and possibly Flavor of Love. Then he introduces us to the judges, and I’m unhappy to see that Simon and Paula seem to have made up and are sitting next to each other again.
Next up is a montage of the women’s performances from Tuesday night- if I didn’t watch them the first time around, I’m certainly not watching them now, and I utilize my fast forward button, until, (finally) it’s time for the men’s performances.
Taylor Hicks is easy like Sunday mornin’.
Taylor’s video introduction reveals that he has to disguise his appearance when he goes out in public- by wearing a toboggan. What’s that now? He’s wearing a… sled? Oh! It’s a hat! Wacky Taylor and his silly colloquialisms!
Taylor seems very excited to be on stage performing the Commodores “Easy”, and the audience is excited right back. Hey, look- there’s Bo Bice in the audience. Bo loves Taylor too!
The judges aren’t thrilled with Taylor’s song choice. Randy tells Taylor that he still likes him, and uses the word “throwback” to describe his style. Paula likes Taylor’s outfit and enthusiasm, and Simon doesn’t care how good Taylor looks- he thought the performance was completely average.
Elliott Yamin is the kid with a lot of potential.
Elliott Yamin sure loves his mom- in fact; he calls her his biggest inspiration. During the Hollywood auditions, Elliott’s mom became very ill, and was in intensive care, but she’s here tonight, so Elliott wants to do her proud.
Elliott is singing James’s Moody’s “Moody’s Mood for Love,” which sure is a lot of Moodys. Tonight he’s rocking the mike stand, and seems pretty confident and at ease. The camera pans over his mom, and although she’s smiling, she looks like Perry Como might be more up her alley than James Moody.
Randy lets us know that both men and women can be in the Dawg Pound, and I breathe a sigh of relief- I was worried that the women were being excluded, but not so! He loved Elliott’s performance, and gives him a standing ovation, the first of the evening. Paula applauds Elliott’s song choice, and wonders how he is going to top it next week, and Simon doesn’t think Elliott can win American Idol if he continues to sing songs like that, but likes that Elliott was more confident. He gives Elliott a piece of advice, and that is to “believe in yourself.”
Ace Young can’t coast through life on his looks alone.
What’s Ace Young’s secret? Why it’s his beanie, of course! Ace admits that the beanies he keeps in his back pocket at all times are kind of like good luck charms, and then he likens them to a wedding band. Oookay. Moving on…
Ace is singing Daniel Bedingfield’s “If I’m Not Made for You,” because he heard Daniel sing it with his brother, and just fell in love with the song. I guess he didn’t love it enough to learn the words before this week, or to figure out what key he should be singing in, but hey- he looks good, and that’s important too, right?
Randy thinks Ace’s song choice really showed his range and showcased him as a sensitive singer. Paula thought the song choice was on point, but thinks Ace should take more risks, and Simon thought that he struggled and didn’t sing the song well.
The audience disagrees and boos Simon’s remarks, and Ace looks close to tears- he really is a sensitive singer!
Gedeon McKinney; Are you gonna change my opinion about you?
Tonight Gedeon’s singing Sam Cooke’s “Change is Gonna Come,” He is definitely a performer and commands the stage while showing off his huge set of pipes.
Randy says that Gedeon is a natural performer, and amazing, although the song was a little pitchy. He calls Gedeon a “throwback,” and those of us actually listening to what he has to say know that’s the second time he’s used that compliment tonight. Paula thinks that Gedeon makes smart choices and that we will see him as a performer for decades to come. Yes, if we frequent amusement parks and cruise ships. Simon calls Gedeon “a funny little thing,” and tells him he’s like someone Berry Gordy would have got hold of.
Simon thought Gedeon’s performance was brilliant, and very good, and Randy interjects that he loves Gedeon’s shoes. Ryan makes a joke about the size of Gedeon’s feet, but I sense he is just jealous that Gedeon doesn’t have to buy his shoes in the kids’ department
Kevin Covais is a gangsta. And a sex symbol.
Kevin greets Ryan with a chest bump, and then smiles knowingly as Ryan calls him a gangsta. I smiled too, but in a sarcastic, disbelieving way. In his video, Kevin smugly tells us that he gets oodles of fan mail… mostly from 12 and 13 year old girls. I suppose that’s pretty cool if you’re a 16-year-old boy. He goes on to say that he’s become something of a sex symbol, and I shed a tear because my little boy is growing up.
Kevin is singing Marvin Gaye’s “I Heard it Through the Grapevine,” and I just know there will be dancing involved. I’m right, and Kevin sings the song very Kevinishly, and even does a few runs at the end.
Randy loves the performance, and warns everyone not to “forget my boy can blow,” whatever that means. Paula agrees that Kevin is the next sex symbol, *uh oh, should Kevin be worried?*, adorable and infectious. Simon thinks the other judges are in la la land, and he brings everyone back to reality by telling Kevin that he’s not radio friendly, but people will like him. Oh, not enough to make him the next American Idol, but enough to push him through to the next round.
Jose “Sway” Penala is a man with two names, (still!)
Ryan and Jose “Sway” take us on a long journey down memory lane… aaaal the way back to last week when Jose “Sway” donned a snazzy hat and velvet jacket and serenaded us with an Earth Wind and Fire song. Aahh, those were the days, weren’t they? We were in the midst of the Winter Olympics, and jokes about hunting with the Vice President were all the rage. Good times, good times. Nothing like this week, where Jose “Sway” is notwearing a hat and a velvet jacket, and will be singing a Stevie Wonder song.
Jose “Sway” sings “Overjoyed,” and it’s the perfect song selection, because I am overjoyed when it is over, and I think the judges agree with me.
Randy is just keepin’ it real, but he doesn’t think the performance was as good as last week’s- it wasn’t unbelievable. Paula felt the performance seemed disconnected and that Jose “Sway” wasn’t in the zone, and Simon tells him that his performance was the best of the evening, and Jose “Sway” is the next American Idol! Kidding! Simon actually said that Jose “Sway” showed everyone how not to win Idol, and his performance was pure karaoke, had zero originality and was utterly forgettable.
Will Makar is your knight in shining armor, and he loves you.
Will tells us he’s living the dream- only two hours of school each day, and he got to attend a ritzy CD launch party and walk the red carpet. Hey- it was cool that Justin Guarini’s supervisor at the valet stand let him take a break and pose for a picture with Will, but I’ll bet he had to get back to work quickly- those cars don’t park themselves, Justin!
Will is singing Kenny Roger’s “Lady.” Did I hear that right? That seems like kind of an… odd choice. Will indeed sings Kenny Roger’s “Lady,” and packs a lot of passion into his performance, and as far as I can tell, hits all of the notes, even.
Randy wasn’t blown out by the performance and thinks Will should sing something that shows he’s amazing and Paula tells Will that he was in control and had nice tone, but picked a song that was too safe, and a little bland. Simon thought Will’s performance was like an audition for Cats, but that his target audience is 11 year old girls, and they will love his performance. Ryan tells Will he wants to see him throwdown… and Will starts to untuck his shirt, because I guess that’s edgy or something?
Bucky Covington is representing the Dirty South!
Bucky likes Hollywood, but can’t figure out the dang menus in the restaurants! Where he’s from, chicken ‘n biscuits means chicken ‘n biscuits, but all the LA eateries have highfalutin names for foods, and probably print their menus in French! Bucky thinks he’s going to lose a lot of weight while on Idol, because all he knows how to order is vegetables. Poor Bucky.
Bucky is singing Garth Brooks’s “Thunder Rolls,” because Garth brought rock to country, and Bucky is going to bring country-rock to American Idol. This week, Bucky has replaced the rocker-rasp with some country-twang, and it suits him.
Randy applauds Bucky for representin’ the Dirty South, and is happy that Bucky knows exactly who he is. Paula basically repeats Randy’s opinion, and says she thought the performance was interesting, and that Bucky did a good job finding himself. Simon Likes Bucky’s sincerity, but tells him he’s more of an opening act than a main attraction.
David Radford is a stylish young man.
Before his performance tonight, David tells us the hi-larious story about how when he arrived in Chicago for his audition, he got out of the car and realized he forgot his belt, and… get this, his pants were falling down! So, David used his mom’s cell phone charger as a belt! Oh my gosh, that’s so embarrassing! You know what’s even more embarrassing David? Tanking it on TV in front of millions of viewers, so I hope you do well tonight.
David’s singing the old standard- “The Way You Look Tonight.” He seems more at ease than he did last week, and stays away from the awkward finger snapping and weird faces. At the end he hits a pretty impressive glory note, and remembers to give a shout-out to the bandleader after he’s finished singing.
Randy tells David that he was bored during his performance, and listened to the band instead of the vocals, Paula says David stayed in his comfort zone and she’s seen him perform better than this, and Simon states David is right for this kind of song, but seems uncomfortable and lacks charisma.
Uncomfortably and uncharismatically, David looks pleadingly at the camera while Ryan reads off his number.
Chris Daughtry is a song-picking genius!
Last up tonight is Chris Daughtry, and he will be sing Fuel’s “Hemorrhage.” He wants the Idol audience to feel like they’re at a rock show, but this is Idol, dude, not a Slayer concert! Ryan tells Chris to “throwdown,” which makes this the second time he’s used that word tonight, and makes me certain that both Ryan and Randy are in dire need of a thesaurus or word-a-day calendar.
30 seconds into Chris’s performance, the audience is screaming for him. Just like last week, they absolutely love him, and I hope they all remember to vote for him tonight.
Randy loved, loved, loved Chris’s performance and tells Chris he’s right where he’s supposed to be, and could be on the charts right now. Paula says that Chris was amazing and his performance was like a magic moment, and Simon crushes the hopes of all the other contestants by telling Chris that his was the only performance that could stand up in the real world, (you mean there’s a music world outside Idol? Surely you jest!). He tells Chris he is in a completely different class than everyone else, and that his performance should be held as the standard for all of the other contestants. Well! The other contestants are smiling and applauding Simon’s critique, but you just know they’re all going back to the hotel to stick pins in their Chris Daughtry voodoo dolls.
That’s it for Idol tonight- all wrapped up in a perfectly manageable hour and a half! What do you think? Are Ace’s fans going to save him from a mediocre performance? Will Bucky Covington starve to death in LA? Is Chris Daughtry going to completely run away with this whole competition?
I’m trying to get “Lady” out of my head, but you can email me at SueEllenMishke@fansofrealitytv .com