Mindy, Rachel, and I are watching via DVR, and I immediately ask to rewind because I haven’t found anything to mock Ryan for in the first few seconds. Then. . .
Who writes these scripts? Really. And Ryan drags out the s in his weekly catchphrase: THISSSSSS is American Idol. Ryan really is the world’s biggest dork.
Stupid Ryan intros the first week’s finalists (yay, Danny!) and then has a chat with the judges. This is dumb. Let’s hear the singers. And wow, Paula seems a bit out of it and is displaying the wares in a low-cut tannish dress.
Stupid Ryan explains the convoluted voting rules and we’re introduced to tonight’s singers. And we can’t figure out who these people are. Some of them look sort of familiar.
First up is Jasmine, the girl from Mississippi. She’s 17 and cute and singing Sara Bareilles. She seems a little under pitch at the beginning and does some weird guttural forced singing that scares me. I want her to do well, but she’s singing it like a sultry lounge singer, not a pop singer. Mindy says she needed a lighter touch; I agree that her voice seems heavy and mannish. Randy says it was pitchy and she tried to make too much out of a simple melody; Kara says she started too low; Paula wants to disagree but can’t; Simon say she has a great look and attitude, but not a great voice. I wouldn’t go quite there, but . . .
I see AI is back with the commercials again. It’s Matt Giraud. . . after the break!
Ryan explains the voting procedure AGAIN. Finally he intros Matt Giraud, the dueling piano player. He’s doing Viva La Vida, the most self-indulgent Coldplay song ever. And it’s. . . . not great in the beginning. Weird phrasing, then he gets to the chorus and kind of loses it on the falsetto. There is also some weird dancing and a strange slow part. Mindy: “Oh, that didn’t go like you wanted it to.” Kara says he didn’t blow her away and it wasn’t his kind of song (recapture the blues); Paula mumbles around and says something; Simon says it was verging on horrible; Randy says he has mad talents but this wasn’t it. We decided he wanted to show he can sing a current pop music, but Coldplay’s less than stellar album wasn’t the best pick.
Then it’s Jeanine, whom I have absolutely no memory of. Nothing against her, but really, has she been on this show before? She’s doing Maroon 5 and wearing scarily short shorts. She seems a little flat. Which is weird because this song is generally performed by a man in falsetto. I think she’s singing lower than Adam Levine. And it isn’t good. I’m disturbed by the whole thing. It’s not a good sign when all Paula can say is “good legs”; Simon says it was terrible and the wrong song and compliments her legs; Randy also agrees on the legs but declares it the wrong song; Kara compliments her—well, we won’t talk about that—and that she overcompensated. Quote of the night from Randy: It would have been better if it had been in tune.
And commercial. Seriously, this is OUT OF CONTROL.
Next up is Norman Gentle/Nick Mitchell. I kind of hate him. A coworker says he’s like Jerry Lewis, who I’ve never thought was funny. And really this is not your next American Idol. He appears as Norman. It’s as uncomfortable as I had thought it would be. I get scared he’ll split his pants or rupture his spleen while hitting the big, long note. Simon looks like he’s about to pee in his pants and can barely formulate a coherent sentence and says he prays Norman doesn’t go through to the next round because it was atrocious, horrific comedy (there’s some weirdness when Norman sasses Simon); Randy calls it entertaining but vocals were not happening; Kara says he’s not terrible but not in the music market; Paula mumbles around and says something. I mean this guy is not a viable option to even be the American Idol. Why did they put him through at the expense of someone else who has the chops and look to be a pop star?
I fear Paula had botox and some sort of anesthesia drugs before the show. She’s is acting kind of weird.
Really, FOX, I understand wanting to sell ads in your biggest show. But this is not funny anymore.
Allison is up next. She’s 16 and reminds me and Mindy of early Kelly Clarkson. Ryan awkwardly interviews her about going to school while on American Idol. She’s doing “Alone” by Heart. Don’t you mess up Heart, girl. I’m always leery when girls try to do Heart. it starts good, but did Molly Ringwald in “Pretty in Pink” design her outfit? She’s pretty good, at least in comparison to the previous singers. But the back-up singers are not doing her any favors. At. All. (Mindy: I think I like her.) Randy says she “blew it out the box;” Kara says she can be sure of her greatness; Paula pulls out the tired “sing the telephone book” cliche and pays a weird compliment about “working the mic stand;” Simon says she is the best so far tonight. I agree, Simon. But someone, talk to her about not talking in the Napolean Dynamite voice.
Hey, no commercial! It’s some dude we haven’t heard much from until now. Ah, his name is Kris Allen. He’s doing “Man in the Mirror” by Michael Jackson. Eek! Really, when people do MJ, it never turns out well. He starts out sort of eh, but does some weird over enunciating with the word “starting.” But really, the vocals are pretty good. And he gets all bluesy, soulsy and I kind of think he’s a tiny bit adorable. He didn’t blow me away, but he’s the best guy so far. Kara says the back half was better than the front part of the performance and the wrong song; Paula disagrees completely (surprise!) and name drops the songwriters; Simon agrees with Paula and the world implodes; Randy says he’s proud of him and some other stuff.
Megan is next. . . after the commercial!
Stupid Ryan promos iTunes and we get the video intro for Megan, who I suddenly remember. Tattoo girl! She’s doing Corrine Bailey Ray. Good choice, if she can do it. Ah, she can. . .oh, I may have spoken too soon. There’s weird movement/dancing happening. I like her because she’s different from everyone else. But really, someone make her stop doing the awkward movements while standing behind the mic stand. Paula says it was a good song and a bunch of other complimentary stuff; Simon says it started well, then she oversang (I agree, Simon); Randy says it was nice job; Kara says she’s a package artist and that she did well. Ryan dances and discusses “The Cold-hearted Snake.”
(Look into his eyes. Uh oh, he’s been telling lies.) Sorry, entertainment during the.. . . wait for it. . . commercial.
Now, it’s Matt the Welder. He’s from Bixby, OK. I just went there. He’s doing Tonic “If you could only see.” And I HEART this song. And I’m kind of digging this. Go, Matt! He doesn’t quite hit the high note in the important part of the bridge, but hey, not everyone is Emerson Hart. As much as I wish they were. The ending is weird, but over-all it was OK. (Mindy: the whole time I was on edge because of the way he moved!) Simon hated it (Simon! We disagree! But I love the song and maybe it colored my thoughts); Randy says it was a good song, but the performance was boring; Kara says it didn’t show anything new about him; Paula says it wasn’t a good choice. I think. I wasn’t really listening. He’s at least one of the better guys tonight.
Jessie Langseth is next. She’s Johnny Lang’s sister. And I don’t like her much because I think she does something weird with her voice and her mouth when she sings. And I think it’s totally put on and not natural. She’s doing “Bette Davis Eyes.” I can’t understand what she’s saying at the beginning. I mean, the girl can sing, but I don’t like her. She annoys me the entire time she’s on the stage. And I definitely would turn the station if she came on my radio. Which is kind of the opposite of the point of the show. Randy says it was OK and implies boring-ness (I want her to shut up!); Kara compliments her look and had some moments; Paula says she’s captivating (mindy and I still dont’ like her); Simon says she’s forgettable and that it was “too cool for school.”
And commercial. Then Kai. Who’s cute. And sometimes, that’s all that matters.
Kai is doing “What Becomes of the Broken-hearted?” and his sick mom is there. I love him. But what is he doing with his upper lip at the beginning of this song? Seriously, that’s kind of an Elvis thing going on. Weird. His vocals are fine, but he does some weir stuff with his mouth while singing. Aww! His mom is totally singing along in the audience. Bet he picked this song for her—which is nice, but maybe not the right reason to choose a song for “American Idol.” Vocally he’s right on and it’s a pretty good performance. Not amazing, but good. Kara says there were pitch issues and the song was old-fashioned; Paula says a bunch of gibberish that is weirdly complimentary; Simon compares him to a wedding singer and that he’d be a better back-up singer; Randy says it was too safe. Oh, Randy, I agree. And that fact scares me.
And COMMERCIAL. Geeze. Anyone want to see that Clive Owen/Julia Roberts movie? Cause I sorta do. . . .
It’s Mishavonna. I hope she does well on “Drops of Jupiter” by Train. I’m already wary. And she’s changed all the pronouns to “he.” Bleh. And she holds the mic with just her fingertips. It’s strange. I mean, she’s got a good voice and shes bringing it at the end of the song, but I’m really not sure this was the right song choice. There’s a little shouty-ness that’s not really OK at the end, though. Paula says the girl can sing, but the song wasn’t a good choice or exciting; Simon says it’s a great song and she’s technically good but the performance was “cold” and too old (Randy says Paula is funny tonight. Mandy says Paula is high tonight. She’s cackling now. . . .); Kara says she needed to loosen up a bit but she’s a good singer who disappointed tonight. At this point, Paula has a sneezing fit. Don’t mess up the botox!
Adam Lambert, the lost member of Panic at the Disco (before they lost the !) is up next. After the forever long commercial break. At this point, Mindy says, “Is this really it? I didn’t like anyone!” He’s doing “Satisfaction” by the Stones. This could be great or deadly. He starts, and I dont believe him about not being able to get satisfaction. I short of feel like he’s doing his homage to Mick Jagger. There’s a lot happening in this performance. He definitely can sing and is putting it out there in a way no other performer has done tonight. And then he hits a note that would rupture my spleen if I tried to hit it. Wow. Paula stands up and claps. I enjoyed the whole show. Really, he should have won that reality show to find a new singer for INXS. But we know how that worked out. Paula says he’s in a league of his own; Simon says this is difficult because parts were bad and parts were brilliant (oh, Simon, I agree!); Randy loved it; Kara raves about his outrageous vocal ability. The boy can sing.
So who stays? Good question.
My picks: Adam Lambert is the only one I’m for sure should get through. Please not Nick Mitchell! Allison Iraheta deserves to go through. The third pick? maybe Kris Allen or Megan Joy Corkrey. It’s too hard.
Plus, I’m pretty sure that I just don’t care.