Tuesday, March 20, 2007

American Idol Top 11: The British Are Coming!

This week's theme on AI is the '60s British Invasion, with Sidney Poitier's favorite one-hit wonder and Olivia Newton-John's doppelganger, Lulu, helping out the gals and head Hermit, Peter Noone, chattering his ginormous teeth at the boys. Oooh, something tells me I'm into something good.

I have no expectations whatsoever, but I've got $10 that says Gina will sing a Rolling Stones song. So Ryan, start me up.

(Okay, I'm done with the musical puns. Unless I see another golden opportunity.)

Opening the show is Haley Scarnato. Haley wants to be "more aggressive," so she chooses "Tell Him" by The Exciters. Right away she shows her new attitude by pulling the cheesiest move ever - heading into the audience. She doesn't sound that bad but hey, I don't think I sound that bad when I'm in the shower and no one is asking me to cut a record. It seems that Haley's definition of "aggressive" is "kinda slutty," so she's basically just wearing very little, showing off her gams (which, honestly, are pretty fabulous) and shaking her tats (which, honestly, are pretty flat) while trying not to trip over her stilettos. Randy, being a man, thinks it was "hot" with a lot of "yo factor" and Simon couldn't really give a proper critique because he didn't hear a word she was singing. Paula is still Paula. Since Simon has let me down where Haley is concerned once again, I will give the response he should have given: It was like some girl from a Nair commercial doing a dreadfully cutesy karaoke performance at a Hawaiian Tropic competition in a cabaret club on a cruise ship.

Next up, Chris Richardson gives us his version of Gerry & The Pacemakers' "Don't Let The Sun Catch You Cryin'." His goal of "finally nailing a song," remains out of reach. It's not horrible. It's actually the best I've heard him so far. But he still sounds like the 2nd or 3rd runner-up at the Justin Timberlake Soundalike contest. At least he's dressed a little better this week. He's gone from used car salesman to bowling instructor. A small step, but a step nonetheless. Randy and Simon both say this is Chris's best so far as well, but Simon still agrees with me that his nose-singing is annoying. Paula just shrieked and threw her panties onstage.

Stephanie Edwards goes for Dusty Springfield's "You Don't Have To Say You Love Me," one of my favorite oldies. Lulu like-likes her, but I'm not digging this. She sounded very whiny at the beginning and her voice continues to crack throughout the song. The Dawg quickly throws down the "pitchy" card, and Simon kicks up the "night club" comparison that would've been better used on Haley. Paula avoids the topic of singing completely, as usual, and tells Stephanie she looks great.

Yay! Another of my favorite oldies, "Time of the Season" by The Zombies, is getting the Blake Lewis treatment. I'm liking Blake more and more every week. I actually have no snarky comments for this...I really like his take on the song. He brings a modern feel to the song by beatboxing in place of that awesome bass line. I normally don't like people messing with my bass, but this is fun. All the judges seem to enjoy Blake's performance. The Dawg says it had the "yo factor." Then of course, Ryan displays his "mo factor" by attempting to beatbox, dance and subtly feel Blake up.

LaKisha Jones lugs about $1 million worth of diamonds onstage to sing Shirley Bassey's "Diamonds Are Forever." You know she's not getting to keep those diamonds forever. Some little dude with a briefcase will probably rip them off of her as soon as she gets backstage. Anyway, at the risk of sounding like Paula, the first thing I think when I see LaKisha is, "Damn, she looks good!" As for her performance, this girl always brings it. For some reason though, Randy wasn't blown away and Simon thinks she came across as "LaKisha in 50 years." Paula keeps blathering on about the diamonds. Is FOX still paying her to show up?

Following LaKisha is no easy task, and Phil Stacey's version of The Nashville Teens' "Tobacco Road" isn't making it any easier on him...or me. First of all, he looks like some guy they just pulled out of the audience. What did he do, wake up late from his nap and have to grab the first thing that he saw in his closet? Where are the stylists? I guess I'm focusing on the clothes because I'm realizing that I'm over Phil's yelling at this point. He's worn out his welcome with me. The Dawg and The Dimwit both kind of like it, but don't really have good reasons to back those opinions up. Simon compares Phil's performance to a bad bar band. Oh yeah. I've seen enough bad bar bands to feel his pain.

Jordin Sparks saves the day with another Shirley Bassey song, "I Who Have Nothing." Jordin was really belting it out in the rehearsal video, and Lulu belted a few shots of whiskey, apparently. She was getting a bit loopy. But back to the present, Jordin is really tearing it up with this song. She sounds fantastic. Unfortunately, the audience agrees and they're all on my damn nerves. Let the girl sing, dammit! You monkeys don't have to hoot and holler every 6.3 seconds. The judges think Jordin is fabulous, and why wouldn't they? Hey, who did Simon just wink at? As if it's not bad enough that he's making a fool of himself by drooling over that little tramp, Haley, now he's flirting with a stagehand or, possibly, Ryan! I'm not going to put up with this behavior for much longer. Oh Lord, and now he says that Jordin sang beautifully but complains that the song was so "gloomy" that he "wants to jump off a bridge." This just further illustrates my point from Monday, that Simon just doesn't understand that music is supposed to move you. Whether the emotion is happy or sad, if a piece of music can have an effect on you, that's good. Man, I'm really starting to think that it's over between us.

I now see that my imaginary relationship with Lord Cowell is the least of my worries, as Sunjaya Meka-leka-hi-meka-hiney-ho, er, Malakar takes the stage. Sunjaya is singing The Kinks' "You Really Got Me." Oh no, I'm not kidding. I wish I were. Does anyone like this? Hmm, there is an obviously deaf girl in the audience who is loving this. She's crying. Wow. She's sobbing hysterically. It's just like watching The Beatles on The Ed Sullivan Show! Is she crying because she's happy, or does Sunjaya scare her, like he does me? Damn you, camera man, stop showing that blubbering kid!! She does not make this train wreck any easier to watch or hear. The judges are all kind of nice to Sunjaya. They're obviously trying to stave off the sympathy voters. Crying Girl's name is Ashley, of course. It had to have been either Ashley or Caitlin. She gets to hug Sunjaya. She's happy. I'm physically ill.

Gina Glocksen makes me feel a little better by proving me right and singing The Rolling Stones' "Paint it Black." Anyone who doubted my earlier Gina statement owes me $10!! I accept PayPal. I think this is probably Gina's best performance, but I'm still not wowed by her. She doesn't seem to show very much emotion...it's all very mechanical. The Dawg says "What's going down," which, as I've mentioned before, always means he's not thrilled. Simon thinks she's an example of "style over content" and seems annoyed with Paula. Big surprise. Actually, I think he's still fuming over Peter Noone's earlier comment about AI being a "voting competition" and not a "singing competition." Wow, Simon is really prone to pouting spells. Just one more reason for me to kick him to the curb.

Suddenly, Chris Sligh appears as if by magic from out of the audience. Hmm, I guess this proves that there is a cheesier move than going out into the crowd. Chris is singing The Zombies' "She's Not There" and sounds pretty good. I don't see any little girls weeping over him, but he's 100 times better than Sunjaya. He's not the best of the guys, which seems like an insult, and he's not the worst, which seems like not saying much. I don't know what to say. I just like Chris and I hope he hangs around for a while longer. Simon seems to have his sense of humor back and tells Chris that he's fun and has charisma. Paula says nothing of importance. The Dawg must love Chris because he laid it out like this, "Check it out baby, check it out. DUDE! I mean, yo, it was good, man, yo yo yo."

Closing things out is Melinda Doolittle, who is undoubtedly setting one of the judges up to say they saved the best for last. Melinda does "As Long As He Needs Me" by - guess who? That's right, Shirley Bassey. I really don't remember her as part of the "British Invasion," but I was born in '73 so what the hell do I know? And who really cares what Melinda sings, as long as she keeps singing? Hey, the crying girl is back! I guess she has some good taste...or she has emotional problems. Is it redundant at this point to say that Melinda is wonderful? Is it pointless to keep saying that she is going to walk away with the crown here? So, what else can I say? I guess I could say that I would've actually liked to hear her try her hand at The Kinks. Simon says they saved the best for last. Ah, we're so in sync. I love him again...and all the judges love Melinda. Then they smile sheepishly, look around and secretly wonder if they should just skip to the Final 3, let Melinda, LaKisha and Jordin fight it out and start over with a whole new batch of contestants.

So, who leaves tomorrow night? Again, it should be Sunjaya, but evil can't be killed so easily. I think the Bottom 3 will be Sunjaya, Phil and Gina. I'd like to have more faith and confidently predict that Sunjaya's time is up, but I have a feeling it will be Phil.


Bond said...

OK, mine is going up in a few minutes... disagree on a few, but agree on many...

Sanjaya is not leaving because o fthe little crying girls.. He actually made me sick... he ruined one of my favorite rocks songs.. this was my growing up era .. I knew these songs...

Gosh can we just cut off his head and hand the trophy to Melinda.. tonight it was her an the other 10... As you will see, i think Stephanie goes home.. bottom three are Sanjaya, Phil and Step... she did a poor job and she was my dark horse.. damn

Travis said...

Girl, you have just the right blend of snarkiness. I have to remember on Tuesday's to wait before I come and read - I'm on the west coast.

Don't hate me because I was seduced by the legs legs legs legs.

And don't hate me because I sincerely detest Blake.

Otherwise, I think I'm pretty much in line with your review.

Hey - can we do Bond's idea and cut off Sanjaya's head?? Probably not. Oh well. Mayhap America will get it right.

BooRad said...

After watching Sobbing Girl, I was so hoping Ryan would try to do an Ed Sullivan impression....I'm thinking its Philferatu thats going home...

Lee Ann said...

I thought Jordin did great last night!!!
Sanjaya...gotta go!

LoraLoo said...

I see we're on the same page about a lot of these singers. Why they kept closing in on that little girl is beyond me. Okay, except when Sanjaya was singing. She was better to watch than he.


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