March 18, 2008

Idol Recap 3/18

I thought that a very large picture such as this would be apropos for this evening's Idol performance, which was, start-to-finish, about the worst I've seen in the two seasons I've watched the show. Basically, we saw 9 out of 11 contestants essentially either crap the bed, or do absolutely nothing original. And on top of it all, it was Beatles night. Which proves either that the Beatles were so good that some of America's most talented "amateur" singers can't touch them, or it proves that these "amateur" singers just couldn't figure out how to wrap their arms around a Beatles song in the way that would encapsulate the contradictory criticism being thrown at them by the judges.

The Good:
David Archuleta - I guess it's easier to sing when the restraining order kicks in not allowing his father to come within 100 feet of the stage. The wife further substantiated the rumor that I had heard about David's dad being the ultimate stage parent, having a meltdown at David during rehearsal last week, and likely contributing to his clusterfuck last Tuesday night. David recovered tonight. I still wonder if his dad also had David castrated so he'd hang on to those cherubic looks and high pitched voice forever.

Syesha Mercado - Gotta hand it to her for a hell of a performance of Yesterday. She did just enough to tweak it to her own style while remaining true to the original song. This is the ultimate Idol trick to success, and she pulled it off beautifully. I really think it could be the kind of cover that you hear in a movie soundtrack.

The Same Old, Same Old:
David Cook - Simon was spot on... the performance wasn't as good as David thought it was. He's just showing up every week and rocking out. David needs to decide if he wants to win this competition or if he wants to become like Daughtry and do his own thing exclusively in rock. From hearing David's soundbites, I think he truly wants to win this competition. Therefore, he's going to have to mix it up some.

Amanda Overmyer - New week, same four notes, different artist and cover. She, unlike David, couldn't give a shit if she wins this competition. She knows who she is and she'll sing every song like it's Janis Joplin or southern-induced rock. Hell, they could have a Starland Vocal Band night and we'd hear Afternoon Delight screamed at us with blinding lights and bad hair dye.

Jason Castro - Remember that dude who smoked up in the woods behind the school and stumbled into your foreign language class about 20 minutes late in 11th grade? I thought so.

Carly Smithson - Fumbled a little bit tonight. But hey, it's Carly. Come on. She'll still be there the last two or three weeks of the show. The costume designers this week really didn't flatter Carly either with a red mumu. Apparently the social activist in J-Red is all in a tizzy because Carly tried to spin a song that was really about Paul McCartney's horror at 1960s racial relations in America into an inspirational song for Idol contestants who had $2 million invested in them and couldn't break through because they couldn't get a visa from immigration. We may hear more from J-Red on this one.

Brooke White - We found out this week that Brooke's upper arms are roughly the width of a double A battery thanks to that yellow sundress that she was wearing presumably because she was singing... wait for it... Here Comes the Sun. I know, I know, symbolism is totally lost on the average Idol viewer so they hit us over the head with it. Brooke looked totally lost on stage.

Eze - This was tonight's clusterfuck of a performance. I wonder if Eze was even in the building last week for Kristy Lee Cook's failed hoedown. We saw Eze try to replicate it tonight. At least he has more charm. He'll survive.

Predicted Bottom 2 who don't get voted off (surprisingly difficult):
Ramiele Mulabay - The cute factor just isn't cutting it anymore. She looked like a long-lost member of Hanson tonight in that little hat and with that sing-songy performance. She'll survive though.

Michael Johns - I just think he's almost out of time and is in an upside down nosedive towards the ground that's going to be hard to pull out of. When they showed him perform Queen tonight from Hollywood Week, that was the performance that we look back upon and say "where did you go????" He picked a great Beatles song that unfortunately just cannot be done in 1 minute, 45 seconds. I have no idea how he's doing in voting, but I can't imagine he's got a huge contingency.

Time to try to buy a new horse:
Kristy Lee Cook - In a way I feel bad for her because she knows she's way outclassed in terms of talent and has somehow skirted by these past few weeks on the strength of her looks, on the strength of her country music fanbase, and on things out of her control (somebody with more talent happens to be outed as a gay stripper and has a bad night of performance). She can't really hold a tune, she hit one good note in her song, and she's done.

13 Responses:

J-Red said...

Well, since Jeremy blew it I guess I'm going to have to come in and set things straight.

1) Syesha. I love Syesha. She totally destroyed Yesterday. She kept trying to hold notes out longer than they're meant to be held, so her guitarist had to change tempos three or four times to try to match her. At one point he was actually looking up at her like "Why are you fucking with me?!?!". She also didn't stick with a couple of the most characteristic portions of the song. There's a distinct four or five note downward progression that nicely sets the tone for the remainder of the song. She went up and over it instead, butchering any chance it had of being stuck in my head.

2) Carly. Carly is disgustingly full of herself. She picked Blackbird, which is a great song, and then tried to make it her holding out notes that didn't need to be held out. She was all over the place, some times trying to make a belting song out of a non-belting song and missing whole half lines of lyrics because she needed a breath. Then she tried to argue with Simon, who criticized her song choice, by saying the song inspired her because it was about the difficulties of breaking through in the music industry. Umm, close. It was about what Paul McCartney saw in the United States in the spring of 1968, immediately after Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated. Blackbird...take this broken wing and learn to fly. All your life, you've been only waiting for this moment to be free.

The song was a message to African-Americans that they needed to continue to push and drive towards equality despite MLK's death. That they shouldn't turn negative. She made it into an inspirational shitfest to support her own agenda. Nice job.

3) Chikezie - Yeah, it was corny. Yeah, the beginning sucked, screwing up a really catchy song that starts fast. Yeah, he sucked ass on the harmonica. But guess what? It's the only song stuck in my head right now. He showed southern blues chops (despite being a little on the country side) and went very nicely with the steel guitar. I really liked it overall, and found it really entertaining. Perhaps Chikezie is the dark horse after all now that he is looking very comfortable on stage.


Josh said...

the only thing that really bothered me about Syesha's performance was she belted out "something wrong," which was at odds with the lyrics, like she was proud of saying something wrong.

Tonight wasn't great in general. David Archuleta had a good performance. I could've done without having spent the time in front of the television, altogether. Nowhere near as good as last week.

Brien said...

I really liked both Carly and Michael Johns. Part of it, I'm sure, is that I really like both those song (plus I suggested Blackbird for Carly). I thought Syesha wasn't really that good, but she stood out a little.

Kristy, Ramiele, and Jason were clearly the worst.

"ben" said...

Sadly I missed Ezie, Ramiele and Syesha. I'm glad I missed Syesha, because like I said, no one else should be doing Yesterday. I would have bet on Ramiele to do it, though, not Syesha. Guess I was wrong.

Of the ones I saw, I thought Carly and Archuleta were good. I also liked Cook again, but it's true he is not going to win the competition if he won't play the game the way it's supposed to be played.

What I really hate is how most of them (Brooke and Carly especially) were too talkative during the judging.

Brooke: It's okay, it's okay.

Shut up. No one asked you.

big tuna said...

I am with J-Red. I hated Syesha even though the judges loved her. They praised the changes she made to the melody. The melody freaking makes that song. I cringed when she strung out those notes in a predictable Idol fashion.

As for Kristy, I can't really defend her anymore. I think she is probably gone. I want to hear her sing a country song though. Not another song in a country twain. Anyway, if she is not gone I think it will be Michael Johns.

J-Red said...

Oh, my prediction for departure is Michael Johns. I've predicted Kristy Lee Cook for weeks in a row now, but I keep forgetting that Carrie Underwood won the show because I underestimate how many country fans there are out there. She is likely to get enough votes to float on just because those people know she MIGHT some day do country.

My fear is that Chikezie freaked people out with his southern blues/slightly country twang version of I've Just Seen A Face, even though it's still the only one stuck in my head.

Brien said...

I can't believe I forgot to mention Kristy's comments to the judges. From memory, she said something like "I hope I'm around next week because I can blow you

(long pause)

out of your socks." The judges and Ryan were cracking up and Kristy looked pretty embarrassed. I thought it was funny.

"ben" said...

Yes, that was hilarious. But there was not that long a pause. She was just struggling a little because she screwed up the expression (knock your socks off).

Nic said...

And then she threw in the " And you know it" as she stared directly at Simon....

Personally I think Idol should do what So You think You Can Dance does, they pick different genre's out of a hat each week. If it's a talent contest then we need to see the contestants do something different each week. Right now we either have Whitney Houston, Michael Bolton, Live, or Elvis rip offs every week. I want to see Amanda and David sing a ballad because I'm kinda tired of the same ol same old.

J-Red said...

The bitch won't die. Kristy Lee Cook survives again.

I wonder if the judges are having second thoughts after I was proven correct that Carly's performance sucked.

Amanda was Vote for the Worst's selection btw, so that website's influence is dropping.

"ben" said...

I don't think the show rigging the bottom three for drama's sake proves that you were right about Carly, J-Red. No way she was really in the bottom three. I can't believe it.

But really, I think I'd rather have Kristy Lee Cook than Amanda. It's fun to see her sweat it out every elimination.

Can't wait until she blows me...out of my socks.

big tuna said...

I am glad Amanda is gone. She just didn't do it for me.

I don't think they rigged the bottom three. I don't think people like it when the contestants talk back to Simon. And no one felt sorry for her stupid trying to make it in the industry crap. And she shouts. And her tatoo is ugly. And people are Irished out after St Patrick's Day.

J-Red said...

I know someone said of the emo-hair rocker boy that he's nowhere near as good as he thinks he is. That's DEFINITELY the case with Carly.

For anyone who thinks she was good Tuesday, find a video clip of the end of her performance and look at her face. She looks like she's holding back tears. Then Randy gives her the thumbs up.

Given how shocked David Hernandez looked last week, this whole group with the exception of Ramiele, Syesha and Kristy Lee Cook, might not be as good as they think they are.

Long live Chikezie!

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