Yeah, those “real faces” in the new opening credits are freaky. Just had to get that out. So! Previously on American Idol: They did the Beatles and America made a HORRIBLE MISTAKE, and then they did the Beatles again which most people would count as Horrible Mistake Number Two. Tonight our top ten tour-going Idols will be revealed. We’ve also been threatened with an appearance from Kellie Pickler, but there are no black clouds forming outside my window or crows cawing in the distance, so I’m not going to believe it until I see it.
And That’s A Start
Ryan introduces the judges, but who cares about them when there are real musicians to discuss? Namely our mentors for the season; appearing at some time within the next ten weeks will be Dolly Parton, Mariah Carey, Andrew Lloyd Webber, and Neil Diamond. I myself am stoked for each and every one of them – between “9 to 5” and “Jellicle Cats,” the train wreck possibilities are out of this world.
Also, that ill-conceived songwriting competition is coming back. So if you’ve got composing aspirations, and you believe in dreams, it’s definitely your time to spread your wings and shine! Or something.
Group-sing! The kids do the Beatles all right, actually. David gets lots of attention while beginning with “While My Guitar Gently Weeps,” and is joined by Jason and Cook and then Michael and Chikezie. Next Brooke starts us off for the ladies with “Here, There, and Everywhere.” She walks over to duet with Ramiele, whose mouth is definitely moving, but whose mic is definitely off. Ha. Then there’s Carly and Syesha, but when the camera man gets to Kristy, he suddenly jerks the other way, as if in protest of having to film her singing at all. It’s the funniest moment of the night for me. So everybody sways in time, and then it gets all co-ed for a pretty beautiful bit of “Because.” I know that song can’t help but be beautiful, but I’m going to give the Idols some credit, just because. Then Amanda helps us finish off with “The End,” there’s a rectangular formation, and a classic pointy pose. Good stuff.
Rehash and Results
They spend some time recapping what happened last night, but the highs and lows have already been covered by the dazzling wit of our own AJane, so I wouldn’t pay it much mind if I were you. Results happen next though, which the show keeps trying to say are important. We’re doing this the tedious one-by-one way tonight, because it’s the top ten and an hour show and there is much drama to be mined. Brooke is up first; Ryan goes all over Simon calling her awkward and her agreeing with him before telling her she is in the top ten. Brooke doesn’t know which of the uncomfortable couches of triumph to sit on, but Ryan, perfectionist that he is, takes time to guide her aright, because this is important. Dude, Carly’s in the bottom three! I can’t process what her chat with Ryan was about, because I’m just so shocked that she’s in the bottom three. I don’t know, America. I don’t know. She takes a seat on one of the uncomfortable silver stools of loserdom. The audience boos, and Paula might cry, and we’re moving on quickly before she has time to dissolve into a puddle of despair. And gin. David Archuleta walks out, is squeed for, and is so obviously in that it’s not even an event. Michael Johns comes out to defend his choppy performance of “A Day in the Life” and then like falls out at the news that he has made the tour.
Have You Driven a Ford Lately?
Please go buy a truck. When you get back, you can watch behind the scenes footage of our contestants shooting a commercial in old-timey clothes. Then the commercial will play to the sounds of “Should I Stay or Should I Go”: in the middle of their innocent pie-eyed picnic, the Idols are attacked by flying saucers! Amanda is the one who screams and looks scared, which I guess is irony? Then they all pile into a couple of mighty looking Ford vehicles and run away, because Ford automobiles are definitely, definitely faster than warp speed. That’s just science. And good old American engineering. Then it all turns out to be just a cheesy movie shoot! What a crazy hi-jink.
More results! David Cook regrets nothing, is smug about being smug, and is in your top 10. Kristy Lee Cook refuses to believe she is anything but great, so her landing in the bottom three yet again must just be mischievous leprechauns tampering with Ryan’s cards. That, or Ryan can’t read. Either way, I’m laughing. Jason Castro looks disoriented and will probably look so again next week. Last night Ramiele tried to go up-tempo, but judging from the look on her face she never will again, so be sure to have your alarm clocks near for when she sings next week.
These stupid audience calls almost make me wish for the return of last year’s 99-cent questions, but really, it’s a rock and a hard place, so I’ll just grin and
bear itwhine about it here. The first call is from Cheryl Ann who wants to give Simon guilt about spending money on stupid cars and not awesome clothes; Simon calls her rude and then says he dresses down because he doesn’t have an ego. Ryan makes that all about him, and then I don’t care anymore and wish I’d never seen this show. Some lady who loves Paula calls in and asks why she never makes out with Simon on camera anymore. Really, y’all? These are the burning things we want to know? I can’t handle it. I say we get up a team of saboteurs; somebody call in next week and ambush them with an on-air dare for young David to take a drink out of Paula’s cup. Anarchy! Revolution!
Pickler! Ryan stumbles over her introduction, probably debating about making that “she’s grown so much” entendre. Then there’s a very lengthy interview package going over all her smashing success and tours and whatever. To be honest I sort of don’t mind, and even kind of like Pickler now that she’s not on stage every week outlasting better singers and acting like a mental patient. She sings a twanged up ditty called “Red High Heels,” sounds a bit like she’s singing through a straw, lingers near Randy and Simon at the judges’ table, and then bows out gracefully. Way to know when to go, girl.
Give and Ache
In spite of my totally selfish pleas for reprieve, they’re doing Idol Gives Back again this year. They even spill where a fraction of last year’s money went, to the purchase of malaria nets. Fantasia and Elliott (!) went to Angola to help hand out nets and meet the people. They both interact sweetly with the folks in the town where they’re filming; they ask Fantasia to sing and she does “Amazing Grace,” which I thought Kristy Lee had bought the rights to, but nope. Then a few doctors take Elliott into a hospital room and inform him that a baby has just been born there, and as per the town’s tradition, he’ll be named after a visitor to the town – namely him. Elliott looks a little overwhelmed by the honor, baby Elliott coos and looks adorable, and the mother looks exhausted. It’s a sweet moment. Then there are dire statistics about many lives being lost and now many saved because of the net effort. Way to go us!
Ryan’s Silver Hammer
Also, Syesha and Chikezie are safe; Elton John is somewhere very satisfied, and Amanda is the final member of our bottom three. Carly is sent immediately to the safety zone though, and hugs and cries all over everybody before going to the couches. Amanda and Kristy are the loseriest of the losers, ad Simon doesn’t hesitate to say they are exactly the right bottom two. Ryan pronounces Kristy’s name with a hesitation that makes me thinking he’s going for an “after the break,” but then he drops the bomb that Kristy survives, and cuts Amanda loose. Hmm. I guess nobody wanted to see Amanda meet Broadway, and so much like a Twinkie, Kristy lives on way longer than anyone ever suspected she could. To her credit, Kristy looks appalled. Amanda actually looks happy, so who knows what’s going on. All the top ten stand and celebrate her home, and she rocks “Back in the USSR” again, only kind of good this time. Why do they do that? This show is weird.
Ryan didn’t reveal next week’s theme, but come back anyway. It’ll be like when the cafeteria had mystery meat and everybody dared the geeky kid to eat it. Sounds like a good time to me.
Anybody voting for Kristy Lee owes me a ten page report detailing your reasons and the ways you are going to make it up to me, by next week. 12-pt font, one-inch margins, and please cite your sources.