Rock Star: INXS 8/21/05 Recap: Songsmithing Shenanigans!
Welcome back to Rock Star: INXS! When we left off, Jessica’s run on the show had come to a, perhaps, long-expected end. MiG’s heartfelt performance of Peter Frampton’s “Baby I Love Your Way” won an encore performance, in which he shared the spotlight with fellow top-vote-getters Jordis and Marty. Oh, and J.D. caused mischief earlier in the week, but that’s just a given, isn’t it? So, let’s join our rockers at the mansion for a well-deserved drink and see if this week will be as eventful as the last.
Tears in My Beer
Poor Suzie. Sometimes, you just can’t seem to get a break, and our beloved Town Crier is fresh off her fourth appearance in the bottom three. The other contestants raise a toast to Suzie for surviving and turning in an excellent INXS song performance once again, but Suzie is genuinely hurt this time. She thought her last performance was very good, so why does she keep ending up in the bottom three? Wake up, world!!! Get on the Suzie train! I’d go out on a limb and suggest that the world just likes to watch her perform INXS covers, but that limb looks terribly shaky.
The only way to cope with such stress and self-doubt in this household is, of course, to get snockered. So the wine bottles are uncorked and the festivities commence, culminating in Suzie table-dancing and making up a wicked-awesome song about Marty on the acoustic guitar. I’m sure it sounded great . . . inside her head. But then, Dave Navarro stalks in, bringing his latest grim tidings. You know, for a man who wears a feathered boa, he certainly knows how to kill a party.
Sing Your Life . . . any Fool can Think up Words that Rhyme
Dave’s latest news is really more of a directive. This week, each of the contestants must write an original song. Yes, that’s right, original songs will, for the first time, be a part of the performance night. They may write them alone, collaborate, or have a roomful of monkeys with typewriters punch them out a sonnet. Whatever. However, each of them must have it ready to go. Ready, set, go!
The contestants have mixed feelings about this one. Jordis feels that she has something to bring to the songwriting table, but pressure-cooker conditions such as these always bring out insecurities. Dave reminds her that at least she’ll have millions and millions of viewers (wishful thinking?) to help her decide whether it’s good or not. How comforting! Ty, on the other hand, equates this exercise to stepping out of the shower, dripping wet and nude, and singing a song. He totally digs this idea, and I’m getting just a little frightened imagining what could come of this. MiG thinks that it’s a great opportunity to showcase songwriting talent, and Marty affirms that this would be the week to win the encore . . . what a huge statement it would be!
By My Side
Since MiG won the encore performance, it means that he’s won a visit from his loved one, right? And that loved one would be his wife, right? And that would be the romantic reunion that would make even the most macho death-metal rocker dissolve into a quivering mass of sap, right? Well, the producers tell MiG that he’s won a free phone call to London. Yay. . . ? MiG is visibly chapfallen by this, but goes to call his sweetheart, anyway. She answers, but . . . hark! She appears from around the corner with a cell phone! Surprise! When MiG looks up and sees her, he nearly jumps out of his skin, but quickly recovers to jump her and the pair launches into a flying hug-tackle onto the bed. Awwwww! (I guess this is the part where we leave?) I wonder if they ever hung up their phones. Because that could rack up a huge bill.
Archetypes versus Amateurs or The Fickle Sorting Hat
Hey . . . now here’s a perk—after drawing their names out of a hat, J.D. and Suzie get the opportunity to perform live on 98.7 Star FM with Kirk, Jon, and Andrew. It appears that they perform a duet of “Never Tear Us Apart,” and the pair is naturally stoked to get face-time with INXS.
When they return, everyone is busily trying to finish their songs, and everyone is starting to get very nervous, most notably Jordis and Deanna. The plot thickens even further when Suzie goes into the billiards room to find that something’s posted on the billboard, and it’s not what anyone expected.
As it turns out, there are songs on the board: “Proud Mary” by Creedence Clearwater Revival, “Start Me Up” by the Rolling Stones, “Dream On” by Aerosmith, and “Cold as Ice” by Foreigner, along with two blank pieces of manuscript paper, indicating the contestants’ original songs. So, only two lucky contestants will get to perform their own songs, even though everyone but Deanna and Jordis wants to. Since you can’t always get what you wa-ant, Suzie decides that the fairest method will be to draw names out of a hat. Luck must be with her, because, hey! It worked for her before!
When the names are drawn, MiG and, ironically, Deanna get the honors of doing their own songs. Suzie is really crushed that probability did not work out in her favor. Curse the odds! She feels certain that this will be her last week if she doesn’t get to perform her own song, so she pulls out the last resort . . . out-and-out begging. With the involuntary waterworks building up and her hair in her face, Suzie tells MiG and Deanna that if they aren’t jazzed about performing their songs, she would love them forever for the opportunity to trade them a classic song. “Thanks,” she squeaks before running out of the room. MiG urges Deanna to keep her original number, but MiG himself is feeling quite open to Suzie’s proposition.
Morrissey once sang the words, “Hold onto your friends.” Surely the Mozzer wouldn’t lie, and Suzie and MiG are both following his advice by taking solace in the company of their mates. Marty lends MiG the advice that it might not be wise to give up his song following INXS’ advice to him in the previous weeks directing him to fight for his top song choices. Elsewhere, J.D. encourages Suzie, pointing out that INXS has been asking Deanna to change her direction, and surely she will not step outside her comfort zone on an original song. Thus, Deanna will put herself in the hot seat and Suzie will perform a stronger song—one of the classics. Wow . . . J.D. is not only thinking ahead with considerable clarity, but he also seems to be genuinely trying to help her without any ulterior motive. Nice going, J.D.!
A Sinking Feeling
Rehearsal time! Deanna meets Paul and Jim from the house band to rehearse her original song, “My Truth.” Can you handle my truth? It’s a bluesy rock number, which Paul describes as very safe and not at all suggestive of the change that INXS wishes to see in Deanna. Before long, Ty joins the rehearsal since he co-wrote the song and immediately jumps in with ideas and very strong opinions about how the song should be arranged. Deanna suddenly becomes quiet and doesn’t appear to care which way it goes, which Paul notices immediately. Ty feels as though he almost gets to perform twice this time around—in one song he’ll show off his vocal chops, and in the other he’ll show off his writing chops, arranging chops, producing chops, and pork chops. Incidentally, the song is starting to sound rather Broadway-esque under Ty’s direction . . . is this truly help or sabotage?
MiG meets Jim and Paul next to work out his song, of which we don’t hear the title. We do, however, hear a very high glory note, and his song sounds pretty promising. Unfortunately for MiG, when they finish running through it, Jim and Paul make it pretty apparent that they’re not feeling it, and Jim suggests that MiG consider singing one of the classics to keep his performance record strong following his excellent cover of “Baby I Love Your Way.” Poor MiG’s innards are probably tied in knots, but he decides to keep to his own song, just as an opportunity and treat of sorts for himself. With that, MiG closes the doors on the ballroom and tonight’s episode, and we’re left hanging in the usual suspense.
Will MiG follow through with his decision to sing an original composition? Interestingly, following the credits, he joins Jordis poolside and drops a CD . . . the CD that holds his song . . . into the water. As it sinks slowly and you can almost hear a tiny voice crying for help, MiG looks a little queasy. Is this a bad omen? Will Suzie get to sing her song, after all? Will Deanna’s song crash and burn? Will Marty turn “Proud Mary” into a brooding, disturbed dirge? So many questions; so little time. See you on Tuesday!
This recap was proudly brought to you by minimal sleep and leftover shrimp cocktail. Mantenna@fansofrealitytv.com