Hello dear readers! Tis I, Iguanachocolate, briefly stepping into the talented and stylish shoes of your regular American Idol recap writers to bring you coverage of what has to be the darkest time for the Irish since they started selling Guinness in cans and the re-formulation of Irish Spring. Tragedies, both, I assure you.
Before I get to the meat and potatoes of this recap, let me confess to you, dear readers, that I have not always been an American Idol fan. In fact, one could say that I am more comfortable with the musical stylings of 18th century composers than with what you youngsters call the caterwalling, excuse me, lyric poetry of the airwaves which passes for music today. However, about a year ago, my significantly younger and hipper Spousal Equivalent got me to watch Melinda Doolittle, I mean Season 6. So this year I gave it another shot. Then I stopped. Then I started. Then Sir Andrew Lloyd Weber was going to be the mentor and I was in it for the long haul (this one week, anyway). I’ve heard the show enough this season to know that I love me some Carly Smithson and Michael Johns. Needless to say, I am one disappointed lizard and my AI season is over. Oh well, life goes on.
It all begins with a magical leprechaun spilling his Lucky Charms, no, wait, that’s Ryan Seacrest announcing the start of the show. He introduces the judges, giving Randy a somewhat nerdy-don’t-know-what-I’m-doing hand shake, then gave Paula a sweet kiss on the cheek that I soon discover is just a front for the next thing he does: kisses the top of Simons head! Yes, he did! Finally, he has leapt out from the closet of oppression and declared his love of Simon. Of course Simon, coy devil that he is, tries to play it off and scoots next to Paula as if it repulsed him, but I think we all know the true story here (Cue Andrew Lloyd Weber’s Love Changes Everything ).
The top six perform “All I Ask of You” with the aforementioned Sir Andrew Lloyd Weber accompanying them on the piano. A passable performance as far as non-choral singing high school students go – seriously, did anyone else think Jason Castro was just mouthing the words?
After the commercial Ryan is back on the stage hyping the 10,000 cities Idol Tour and then gives a recap of the night before. Randy thinks it will be the toughest night, Sir Andrew thinks they are a talented bunch of kids. Syesha does a wonderful performance of “One Rock and Roll Too Many” that the Randy thinks was her best performance to date and Simon says was really sexy (a front I tell you for his true feelings!), David sings “Think of Me” that sounds like the arrangements of say, every other song he has sung on this show but that Paula thought was risky and Simon thought is was not as good as his previous performances but still good, and Jason wheezed his way through Memories. Can I just interject something here – is that lad crazy? He simultaneously marred forever my memory (hee, I made a punny) of that song and creeped me out. That’s quite a feat, I assure you. Simon felt he came across as a reluctant juvenile wedding singer and not a very good one at that. Brooke was up next and stopped and started again with “You Must Love Me”. According to Paula she should not have started again because it is a cardinal sin to make a mistake. Ah, yes, sage advice from a woman who danced her way through a music video with a cartoon cat. And then my most wonderful Carly sings her “Superstar” heart out whilst wearing the cutest dress. Really, to my mind she was the best of the night, truly embracing the song and its meaning. Simon unfortunately gave her the kiss of the death by saying it was one of his favorite performances of the night. Back I say Evil Forshadowing! Back before my mighty sword! Alas, my sword breaks. The minor musical recap is finished with David C. singing “Music of the Night” and Randy likening it to ‘hot molten lava’. For a complete (and wonderfully written, I might add) recap of Tuesday night’s show, press HERE to read MotherSister’s prose.
Next comes the sit down portion of the show where Ryan has a little one on one time with Sir Andrew (you know he is just trying to make Simon jealous). Did anyone else crack up when Sir Andrew started talking about how in live theatre one can get away with all sorts of mannerisms and oddisms that one can’t get away with on television and seems to unconsciously illustrate every one of the arm movements he was talking about? Anyone? No? Just me then. Right. Ok.
Ryan turns to Randy and reminds him that he said this was the most difficult theme AI has had in a while and wants to know why the Big Dawg thinks that is so. Randy says that people tend to think Broadway tunes are easy to sing, that they can just be belted out and most pop singers can’t give the depth of emotion to the intricacies and emotions behind story driven lyrics that are necessary to convey a sense of realness to sometimes absurd human conditions. Or maybe that is what I was thinking and Randy just did that weird peace sign he does and said ‘dude’. The talk returns to Brook’s heinous crime of stopping and starting the beginning of her song [/end sarcasm] and Sir Andrew says hey, it happens. Then cheeky Ryan wants to know what the title of Simon and Paula’s love song would be and Sir Andrew quips ‘Time to Say Goodbye’? And I swear I saw Ryan’s lips move and mutter “goodbye to her and hello to me”.
And because it is in the show and because I have to mention it (because I’m hoping I’ll get a new car out of it) the Ford commercial was some kind of weird comic book themed craziness set to the song ‘Tainted Love”. And thanks to our friend over at Big Brother, I will always remember the word ‘taint’ by throwing up a little in my mouth. Anyway, the gist of the commercial is “buy a Ford”. In more shameless commercialism (though this is for the greater good of Idol Giving Back) Ryan hawks the Idol stamps, this week featuring Fantasia! Ooooh, ahhh, run out and buy them. Then the President and the First Lady gush over Idol giving back and saving the world and all.
Finally, we get to the entire point of the evening: who will stay and who will go? Up first, the David’s as in Cook and Archuleta. Randy’s descriptive ‘molten hot lava bomb’ comment of David C’s song is mentioned yet again, yada yada yada, David A. is told he is almost a god, but not as godlike as he was last week, yada yada yada and they are finally sent to the safety of the sofa whilst millions of tweens everywhere break into tears out of the sheer joy of it all. Funniest part of the whole night? Simon getting caught with his mouth full. Of a candy, you perverts! Oh, and anyone else catch Jason Castro’s yawn back stage? He really needs to calm down.
Since it’s Sir Andrew Lloyd Weber week thoughts naturally turn towards toward Broadway and lo and behold there are some Idol alumni there! Diana somebody has been in Hairspray, Fantasia and Lakesha Jones in the Color Purple. Someone named Tamyra Gray – Season 1 is in Rent (one of my favorite musicals of all time) And Clay Aiken – Season 2 is in Spamelot. Now, as I said in the beginning I am not an Idol afficiando but I do know Clay Aiken’s name. Not because I am a fan of his, but because I am a fan of Kathy Griffin’s who does wonderful sets on Aiken and his Claymates. Anyway, he has an new album coming out, so buy it so he can continue doing what he does best - being fodder for comediennes.
Since Sir Andrew does not sing, they had to bring someone else on to give hope (and later on heartache when they find out just because you win a competition it doesn’t mean you’re a star) to the idols so out comes Simon’s protégé Leona Lewis to sing her number one smash hit Bleeding Love, which while she it quite well, she is no Neil Diamond. That’s all I’m saying. No, seriously, to give credit where it is due, she does have an amazing voice and makes nice overuse of the trills and runs that are so popular with the youngins today.
Finally, Ryan brings us once again to the reason we are all here: the results. Out trots Syesha and Brooke. Now I’m thinking Brooke, you’ve sung your last here on Idol, but no, I’m wrong, it’s Syesha who is sent to the chairs of death. Brooke seems stunned but makes her way to the couches and after yet another commercial break out trot Carly and Jason. At this point I am resting pretty easy as I figure either Syesha or Jason are going home. And I am fine with that. But no, the gods seem fit to put my Celtic Goddess in danger. Jason slinks off to the couch quite unaware of the assassin’s bullet I am shooting towards him with my eyes. Carly is handed a microphone and told to sing for her life. Well, not really, but she is asked to sing her “Superstar” number again. I’m thinking, wait, did I miss something? I thought they sang after they knew who was going home? Doesn’t it go "cue sappy music, cue video tape, cue tears", now sing your little heart out and leave us til your out on the American Idol tour later this summer (coming to every city near you!). Anyway, Carly sings and it is just as good as it was the night before. Energetic, in tune, exciting – everything you want a Goddess to be. And she remembered all the words!
Next up is Syesha. I’m sorry to say that her performance was not a repeat of the night before. She started off a bit sharp, breathy and it simply was not as engaging as it was during the first performance. And apparently the camera man thought that as well: anyone else catch the brief focus of Ryan and Carly in an animated conversation whilst Syesha was singing? And the fact that as she moved around and off the stage they were still holding that conversation and that Carly was waving her arms around? Well, dear readers, by the miracle of technology (and the imaginings of my own mind) I can now confidently tell you (allegedly) what they were conversing about: It seems Carly was explaining the curse of Simon’s praise on her form the night before and trying to bribe Ryan with future offspring if he would spare her this night. And though Ryan was intrigued by the idea of a surrogate Carly baby for His and Simon’s very own, he refused to believe that his Beloved Simon was cursed. Or maybe he needed directions to a pub in Dublin, I’m not sure. Syesha’s number ends with the traditional screaming of the audience plants, I mean fans.
Finally, after a very long evening, Ryan is back and I think he is actually going to tell us of Syesha’s demise now. He tortures us with more judges comments and finally drops a blow to my heart: Carly, my Celtic Goddess is going home. We watch her goodbye images and listen to her graciously thank them for the opportunity and express her happiness at having gotten the chance to be there.
Carly, Go n-éirí an bóthar leat.
(May the road rise with you)
Next week Neil Diamond! And a return to the brilliant recaps by AJane and MotherSister.
PM me if you have some Irish whiskey to share….