Better late than never, right? It’s me, your erstwhile blogger, back in town and offering my (late) thoughts on last night’s American Idol. Many thanks to ersatz guest blogger Meg, who put her recap in the comments section of my previous post. Since many of you aren’t commentically inclined and may have missed her insight, I’ll paste her evaluation into the body of this post, and then offer my thoughts following each performer as I watch this “plausibly live!” on TiVo tonight. Next time I do this, I think I’ll just give the guest blogger the proverbial “keys to the kingdom” and let them just blog away in the main body, since that goes to all the RSS readers and email subscriptions, giving them the massive forum (among 18 people) they deserve for their contributions, wit and wisdom.
It should also be noted that just like in national Democratic politics, there is a case of “gender bias” in the reviews. From previous emails and comments, I perceive that Meg has probably given more benefit of the doubt than I would have to Archie and Terl, just because they’re “cute.” Similarly, I frequently forgive forgotten lyrics, occasional “pitchiness” and other missteps because of dark eyeliner, nice legs, ample cleavage, cute feet or short hair. (Much like I’ve started TiVoing Samantha Who just because of Christina Applegate’s hair. Granted, it’s not a bad show. And I’m usually not that fond of any type of curly hair. But damn, that’s adorable). Hey, we’re all human, ya know?
Okay, here we go…(Meg’s original comments are in normal type, and mine are in red).
You asked for it!!! (don't read until you have watched!)
I'm not nearly as fun and witty as you but here are my thoughts as we go along.
Initially I am scared... ALW songs are BIG and I am just not sure the group can handle them.
Up first is Syesha... great voice but as of yet has shown little personality and charisma. She is doing a song I don't know... but she is INCREDIBLE! Where has THIS girl been all season! Great voice... sexy and sassy and full of charisma. If she had been performing this way all season, she'd be the front runner by a mile! All 3 judges agree! Maybe this will be a fun night after all! I'll give her a 9.
I have to agree with the Megster here. I’ve been down on Syesha for much of the season, but this was fantastic, full of personality and great voice. A peppy and flavorful song, and she had fun with it, and wasn’t her usual melismatic, pretentious, dour self. She looks great, and this was indeed her best showing yet. 9.
Commercials: I hate to say this, but Wall*E looks cute. And how soon can we get House back on the air? I miss my snarky bitterness and Cutthroat Bitch.
Up next is my sweet Pretty Boy Jason... (I refuse to say those terrible things about him that you do!) He's doing Memory from Cats... I'm scared... (will those people please quit waving their arms?) He never takes the song to the powerful place that you see in the show and as a result it's nice enough but lacking for me. Randy and Simon didn't like it, Paula tried to say she did... but even Jason didn't seem like he was thrilled. Yeesh. 5
Psycho Terl has the same, vacuous gaze during the interview, and admits he hasn’t seen an ALW production. And of course he chooses “Memory.” And of course, ALW suggests that Terl will probably ignore every thing he told him. And of course, this is a butchery that would make Sam from The Brady Bunch jealous. Breathy, weak, squeaky and completely disconnected from what the fuck it’s about. The only “memory” suggested here is the memory of sitting outside a low rent Starbucks wannabee having overcaffeinated people throw the two bits leftover from a $5.75 latte into an upside down trucker hat out of pity. Randy uses the term “train wreck” and dude, dawg, aiiiight – he’s right. Paula wants his dreadlock, apparently. Yee gods, that was horrific. 2.
Brooke is next singing a song from Evita... Oh my god... She just started over after beginning the song. She has got to learn to keep going when she flubs a line! She is singing beautifully but I can only imagine her in concert on the tour telling the band to start over! Randy doesn't love it, Paula scolds her for the stopping, Simon is kinder than I expected. 4
ALW: “I don’t think that girl had a clue what she was singing about.” Just 2.5 Idolettes into tonight, and already I think he’s one of the best and most constructive and helpful guest mentors in the history of the known universe. Scrunchy-faced Nanny Brooke will be doing “You Must
Commercial: Doesn’t Iron Man look fucking awesome? Yeah, I thought so.
Cutie Pie David A is up next.. OK, so he really does look like a stuffed Koala I used to have! He's singing a Phantom of the Opera piece that he has completely changed from the original and I like the arrangement. His voice is well suited to these kinds of songs and I think he did a nice job. Nothing spectacular but very nice and solid. ALW did not look happy while applauding but Randy and Paula loved it. Simon was more in line with my thoughts - pleasant, nice, but forgettable. 7
Thanks to Meg for recognizing the stuffed animal doppelganger. I wonder if that Koala’s dad beat him backstage when he failed to sing an inspirational song of faith well enough to win a record contract and save the family from driving around in a 1975 station wagon and living on Swanson TV dinners? Koala boy is trying really fucking hard to keep his eyes open (suggestion from ALW) and reminds me of Alex getting deprogrammed to violence in A Clockwork Orange. I think Koala needs a little of the “old ultraviolence.” The stuffed animal does well enough with the vocal, and I agree with Meg and Simon on this one. 7.
Now we have Carly... ALW talked her into a different song (the new one is from Jesus Christ Superstar) and he was completely right. For the first time in recent memory she actually looks comfortable performing, seems to have some fun on stage and belts out the song fabulously! Judges like this including Simon who said fave of the night. She pulls out a funny shirt that says "Simon loves me (this week)" and probably scored some charisma points by doing that. Smart. 8
Once again, ALW is right on the money. GREAT advice to my girl Carly. That was so fucking good, it’s almost enough to get me to believe in the title character from the song. Almost. She looks amazing, sounds spectacular, and for the first time since “Come Together” or “Crazy On You” looks like she’s having fun. But what the frell is Randy saying? It was just good, or just okay? And the mad seal clapper? Huh? How can she not love this? And Simon still can’t give it up totally for Carly. Her “Simon Loves Me (this week)” shirt is funny and cool. If I was totally objective, I’d put it on par with Syesha, but since I’m totally in the bag for raccoon eyes, I’m giving it a 9.1.
My fave, David Cook, is up next. He says he grew up doing musical theater - cool! Music of the Night from Phantom is his choice - tough song and I don't know if he can do it. Holy cow... he really is a freaking rock star. This guy can sing anything. Beautiful power note... sexy, sweet, sensual.. just as it should be. Just wow. Fantastic. Judges agree. Best of the night for me. 9++
Maybe David Cook and Meg, and Carly and I can go on a double date. They can sing and we can do the play by play. I’m not about to slide off a vinyl couch or something, but damn, boy brought it tonight. Completely out of his grungy, emo wheelhouse and he just nailed this one. Good stuff. 9.
Meg’s Best of the night by far: Syesha, Carly, David C
Meg’s Going Home - Probably Brooke or Jason but I think Brooke.
TNRLM Top 3: Carly, David Flowbee, Syesha
TNRLM Bottom 3: David A (who was closer to the top than the bottom) and the fucktacular flops of Psychlo Terl and Brooke.
Can't wait to see what you think!
Now you do. ;-)
Thanks again to pinch-hitter extraordinaire, Meg.
What did y’all think?