And then there were seven.
We lost Andrew Garcia and Katie Stevens on another emotional Wednesday night Idol results show. No surprises, but it still kind of hurts at this stage of the competition.
Even though we all knew this week would be the end for Andrew — and I’m sure he did, too — it’s always sad to lose someone we have rooted for, been frustrated with and feel like we have come to know since January. The same for Katie, the kid with the Katie Holmes smirk, who like Andrew never really found her niche during this competition.
Andrew bowed out with the style and grace I expected of him, thanking everyone from the judges to the viewers at home. And he was right when he said the show provided an opportunity he would never have had. Fittingly, he sounded great in his farewell song. He sounded like the Andrew we had come to know early in the competition, the one that mysteriously disappeared for far too many weeks. It was time for him to leave, but I’ll miss Andrew.
I give Katie props for holding in the tears until the highlight reel of her and Andrew’s Idol journey. That’s when the teenage girl in her showed, and the tears flowed. I don’t think Katie has any real recording history in her future, but the high school kids are always fun to watch on this show to see how they handle the pressure and the criticism. Katie did amazingly well, I thought, and though it was time for her to go, too, I’ll miss that smirk.
Next week is “Inspirational Songs” with Alicia Keys as the mentor. If you ever happen to glance at my “I Have A Lot To Share” blog, you may have noticed I think Alicia Keys is arguably the most beautiful woman in the world, so .. yeah, I’m looking forward to Tuesday night. A lot.
SEASON TOP 7 … Last week’s rankings are in parentheses:
1. (1.) Crystal Bowersox: The Pride of Ohio may not have had her best week — in my opinion — but she remains far and above the finest talent of Season 9. What you need to remember, however, is that four times in the previous eight years the season-long “favorite” has not won the overall competition. Personally, I don’t think that will be the case this year because Crystal is just that much better than everyone else. But you never want to say never on Idol. (Part of me wants Crystal to break out “Hang On Sloopy” some week. Ohio State football fans will understand that.)
2. (2.) Casey James: I almost dropped Casey to No.3 in favor of Big Mike. But I feel Casey’s overall package this season has been stronger … but Big Mike has been gaining ground the past two weeks.
3. (3.) Michael Lynche: The Big Guy has been sporting the Superfly look in recent shows with The Hat. I think it works.
4. (4.) Siobhan Magnus: Has any contestant in recent years sported a more disgusted look than Siobhan when she is getting smacked by the judges? I have to think her attitude turns off a certain percentage of the voters. And that nose ring just annoys the heck out of me.
5. (8.) Tim Urban: As weird as this sounds, Tim (and his Fifth Beatle haircut) is that close to being considered a legitimate threat to reach the finals. Tim Nation grows larger and stronger each week. And remember, he only got into the final 24 when Chris Golightly was disqualified for lying about some of his background information.
6. (6.) Aaron Kelly: I think Aaron and Lee will be on the thinnest ice heading into next week.
7. (7.) Lee Dewyze: Lady Godiva and a few of the regular contributors to this blog have been giving me grief for underestimating Lee’s talents. Sorry, guys, I just don’t see him the class of Crystal, Casey, Big Mike or Siobhan, and his on-stage presence pales in comparison to Tim and Aaron.
34 million votes this week, a season high, according to Ryan Seacrest.
Another cheesy group number spotlighting some of the Elvis classics. This was actually so bad it was good in a campy sort of way.
Simon really looks bored … I think the wear of leaving the show and preparing for the 2011 debut of X Factor are beginning to take their toll.
Ryan’s strange behavior this year has been noticed by more than myself and the Idol Nation readers. I saw a headline Wednesday that read “Has Ryan Seacrest lost His Freaking Mind?” Good question.
Siobhan had her combat boots on again. Love the boots.
FROM AROUND THE IDOL NATION
From Victoria Leigh Miller, Associated Content: Adam (Lambert) was awesome (as a mentor Tuesday night). He was one of the best mentors they’ve had so far. He was really honest and blunt, and he told them to step it up with their personalities, which is really what they need to do.
From Ann Donahue, Billboard.com: I…I…liked this? Again? I’ve liked Tim Urban performances two weeks in a row? He even managed to sort of do the falsetto that Adam suggested, although it was a bit tentative. I think he’s figured out that there’s one thing he can do pretty well, and he’s going to keep on doing it. He’s so safe for another week – and maybe much, much longer.
From Michael Slezak, Popwatch: The judges kept their comments (Tuesday night) positively spartan, and mostly totally useless. Randy Jackson, please define “in the zone.” Ellen DeGeneres, if all nine singers are “great” or “fantastic,” why bother sitting behind the judges’ table and offering feedback? And Simon, sometimes Kara DioGuardi has a point — like when she tried to tell Lee his “A Little Less Conversation” would’ve benefited from a flirtier, sexier vibe.
From Dalton Ross, NY1.com: While it may be a bit premature to say the reign of American Idol is over, the show is definitely suffering from a lackluster season and a glut of lackluster singers. Make no mistake, American Idol has had plenty of bad singers, like Camile Velasco, Carmen Rasmusen or Sanjaya Malakar. Yet never has there been a final group that was so consistently underwhelming, and not even in an amusing way. At least Sanjaya was spectacularly bad. The new crop has been the worst thing possible — unentertainingly bad. Aaron Kelly, Tim Urban, Katie Stevens and others are neither good nor awful enough to truly enjoy. They just sort of exist as easily-forgettable performers that fail to inspire much of anything. American Idol is also suffering the lack of any true breakout performer. In years past, singers like Adam Lambert and Chris Daughtry brought heat and excitement to the show, even if they didn’t end up winning. Now, there is no performer this year that you have to watch each and every week. Sure, Crystal and Siobhan have some talent, and Big Mike has a fun personality, but none of the three are transcending the show in any way. While the lack of talent is the biggest problem this season, the judging is also problematic. Oh, how I miss Paula Abdul. She was absurd, but wonderfully so. You never knew what sort of nonsensical rambling was going to come out of her mouth, which made her the perfect person for live television. Randy, Kara and new judge Ellen DeGeneres, however, are a mix of bland and blander. Simon Cowell looks like he’s counting down the minutes until he can jump to his own creation, X Factor, which starts in 2011. The way this season is shaping up, I can’t say I blame him.