Wednesday, May 04, 2011

American Idol Season 10 - Top 5 Perform

Hello American Idol fanatics!  These 5 really brought it tonight didn't they!?  Well, I guess I'd say for the most part it was a pretty solid show.  I hate how they are content with keeping the show an hour and a half still.  I don't think we ever had 2 songs each when we got down to the top 5.  I thought it was top 3, maybe top 4 and they fit it in an hour.  So we were treated to the judges talking on and on about who knows what?  I love when they argued back and forth with Jacob about whatever and I was yelling at the TV "No one cares about him growing as an artist!  We want him to go home!!!!"  Anyway, so that's where we're at.  THEN AND NOW the theme for tonight and the fabulous Sheryl Crow was there to guide these younglings along with Jimmy Iovine as always.  Let's get to it!

  1. James Durbin - Song 1: "Closer to the Edge" by 30 Seconds to Mars Song, 2: "Without You" by Harry Nilsson - Love both songs.  And I have thought James has really brought it every night.  But I was very very confused by the love from the judges tonight.  Sure, it was an emotional night but was anyone else laughing when he walked out of the pre-performance clip and Sheryl crow made a "WTF" face?  And then he was sitting on a blue parking stop away from the camera?  Call me insensitive but it was cracking me up!  Hey, I've had my share of a long distance relationship but dude keep it together on camera!  His vocals were all over the place tonight.  And I'm sure he'll be safe because Randy dubbed him as the one to beat.  Normally, I'd agree, and based on his track record I still think he's on his way to the Top 2.  But, come on, don't dismiss his vocals because he was emotional.  I would have been impressed if he was that upset and STILL hit the notes!   
  2. Jacob Lusk - Song 1: "No Air" of Jordin Sparks and Chris Brown fame, Song 2: "Love Hurts" by Nazereth - I've made it no secret that I'm ready for Jacob to go home.  Tonight's performances just solidified my stance on it!  The one man duet, the oversinging of "Love Hurts" - Yes yes, amazing vocal range.  The man can sing, but can we really call him a man with his girly hip thrusting and fist pumping of female empowerment during "No Air"?  I mean, I felt bad for him it was so ridiculous!  (may have laughed a whole bunch too)  And it was no bowtie outfit from last week but outfit #1 of the night was totally a sailor's outfit, right?  Insert Joke as you must.   If I can't take the man seriously, then I can't want him to be our Idol.   If I'm wondering where his RuPaul outfit is, then I can't want him to be our Idol.  Call me insensitive or shallow.  I don't care!!!  You're all thinking it too! 
  3. Lauren Alaina - Song 1: "Flat on the Floor" of Carrie Underwood fame,  Song 2: "Unchained Melody" by the Righteous Brothers - And here's sweet little Lauren Alaina that everyone wants to root for and waiting for her to come out of her shell.  Sheryl gives her one piece of advice.  Stand in one place and ROCK the hell out of that Carrie Underwood song!  And that's exactly what she did.  I thought she did an awesome job and this is exactly the type of performance she needed to keep encouraging her voters to vote.  Song #2, I really thought we were in for a moment with that one.  And it did turn out to be sweet and beautiful if not a little pageanty.  She did hit some high notes but did not even attempt to go for THE high note of "Unchained Melody" and I just don't know if you can sing that song without going for it.  But it was a nice compliment to her Carrie song.  I think she'll be fine tonight and shall be entering the Top 4.  
  4. Scotty McCreery - Song 1: "Gone" by Montgomery Gentry, Song 2: "Always on My Mind" by Elvis Presley - Scotty was in his zone once again!  Song 1, he was commanding the stage and the crowd.  He played his flute once again but didn't get too carried away with it, and he showed more vocal range than normal.  A seasoned vet up there at 16/17 however old he is.  He toned it down for the Elvis ballad afterwards and while it wasn't as "stand-outish" of performance he reeled us all in and told his story beautifully.  Scotty did a great job and is definitely, yes Randy, "IN IT TO WIN IT YOOOOOOOOOO!"  
  5. Haley Reinhart - Song 1: "You and I" unreleased by Lady Gaga, Song 2: "The House of the Rising Sun" by the Animals - Okay, picking the Gaga song for her was a bit bizarre but I didn't think it was as detrimental as the judges thought.  I've even heard of the "You and I" song that Lady Gaga performs and I'm not the "monster's" biggest fan either.  What else is there to say about Haley?  She drives a lot of us crazy with the growling and her weird vocalizing of some notes.  But there is no denying in her talent.  She has an amazing voice and range when used properly.  The judges will say that she had a huge moment with the Animals song.  And hey, maybe she did!  She definitely wasn't my least favorite and she has grown on me enough for me not to hope she's going home this week.  Crazy Voice with a Hint of Cookie Monster.   That's what you get with Haley!   (Note: Okay, I listened to "Rising Sun" again.  It was really good.  I undersold it in this recap.  I admit it!) 
Well, looking back at my commentary you'd think I didn't enjoy the night!  I guess I'm just being as critical as the judges attempted to be tonight!  Time for the picks!  There's only 5 people left so no need to get into our breaking it down.  I have my Top 3 and the fat that needs to be trimmed still.  I think Haley has spared herself an elimination this week.  So that leaves one person!!

Bottom 3: Don't think they'll do one.  Jacob would be there.  Maybe James, maybe Lauren or Haley.  I dunno! 

Elimination Pick: Jacob Lusk - I will pick him until he leaves the show!  I really don't think there is any way around it this time.  There's nothing saving him this week!  I think he'll have a great future singing in Vegas with Chandler Bing's dad one day! 

That's all I got folks!  Lady Antebellum and Jennifer Lopez take the stage at the results when Jacob will EXIT the stage!  Tune in to see if American gets it right.  Hope you enjoyed my ramblings and  I'll see you right here in the comments after the results! 


Ian said...

I think you and I agree for the most part. This isn't the first time they've gone to two performances in the Top 5 though. They did it that way in Seasons 2-5 and 7.

James' vocals weren't all that great on either song, but they were passable. He's pretty much a lock for the Top 2, so it won't matter.

I surprisingly thought Haley was pretty good in both her performances. I almost wonder if she could outlast Lauren, since she's been gaining momentum throughout her run. Not that I want her to, but at this point I wouldn't be shocked.

Speaking of Lauren, I wasn't as high on the Carrie Underwood song as the judges were, but it suited her well. I liked "Unchained Melody" except, as you said, for the fact that she wimped out on the high note. There she was, sounding great, the tension was building up to the climax and then suddenly...ah, faked you out. If she'd hit that note it could've been her best performance in the competition. Instead it was good-but-flawed.

I liked that Scotty really let loose on his first song, even though it sounded like all the movement was wearing him out. I wish I liked "Always on My Mind" more than I did, but his vocals sounded a little too low. It was a good song choice, but he probably could've done a better job with it.

As for Jacob, that "No Air" performance was definitely the worst of the night. Terrible song choice, all over the place vocally, just plain not good. "Love Hurts" suited him better, and he did justice to it, but America's probably seen enough of his over-the-top gospel style for one season. My guess is he's going home.

By the way, it's not looking good for your Flyers, is it? Of course, they were in the same situation last year, so maybe lightning can strike twice. My Blackhawks lost in the first round, and the Capitals, who I consider my second team, just got knocked out too, so these Playoffs have been disappointing so far. On the bright side, the Red Wings are currently on the ropes, so at least that's one thing I can enjoy as a Chicago fan.

iron said...

Haley - Not a Haley fan, eh? I think she crushed everyone tonight. But what can I expect from the judges. If the votes are based on the judges critiques, Haley had gone home even before the top 13. Very Underrated.

Scotty - I liked Scotty, but I'm not a fan of his singing ability. Given I'm not into country music, I can't really tell whether he's amazing, average, or bad. Every single one of his songs sounds the same to me, I don't know. I guess he's good, because everyone's saying he's already got his thing in the bag. Quite boring for my liking.

Lauren - She won't be the next Carrie Underwood or Kelly Clarkson, that I can say. Maybe she'd sell some records but not like Kelly and Carrie. I don't think she can amount to a thing with her talent and personality. I don't want to sound mean, cos she really have a good voice, but almost everybody in that top 24 had good voices as well. I just can't see her as the next pop superstar. I actually can't see any of them being as famous as the other famous idols.

James - Scream here, Scream there, Scream everywhere. That's it. He needs serious polishing, vocally.

Jacob - Is this guy the next Stefano, having 9 lives and all. Just go the f*** home already!

By the way, I love that Chandler Bing's dad comment. I miss friends! Haha.

Mike V. said...

Ian - Cool to see we agree on mostly everything this week. Crazy that I forgot they did 2 songs in the top 5 before. Then again...I'm sure they fit it into an hour! I'm guessing it's more that FOX doesn't have another half hour program to fit between 9 and 9:30 so they just extend Idol and get big ratings. UGH. It's the worst part of this show being successful...they milk it for every minute they can get! You'd think I would have accepted it after 10 years! lol

As for the Flyers - ugh...Once I saw they were down a few goals, I didn't even bother checking back in during Idol. It's embarrassing! I don't think they can pull off that miracle twice but we'll see! That sucks for you with Chicago and Washington...

@iron - Thanks for sharing your comments! Hmmm....Haley. Yeah I haven't been a huge fan since the beginning, but I have noted over the past few weeks that she has been growing on me. And I was able to come around in the final moments of her recap and acknowledge that she did really well last night! lol Agree with Ian, she could possibly overtake Lauren in that top 3... Hard for me to believe but everyone loves a sleeper climbing through the ranks. She did less growling and cookie monstering last night which was good but every once in a while...I still hear it and it drives me bonkers! lol

Yeah if you don't like country you're not gonna like Scotty. (well that may not be true....he does have some sort of appeal about him) But rest assured...the entire SOUTH...LOVES this guy and will stop at nothing to make him the next idol. If you've noticed, the majority of Idol winners are from the South. (Jordin is the only exception that comes to mind) Having married into a Southern family, I can tell you where their loyalties lie in this idol race. Oh yeah...and they're big fans of Lauren too lol When they do badly, it's just more encouragement for votes.

I agree...I don't think Lauren has the star power that Carrie or Kelly had even during their Idol runs. They both made leaps and bounds AFTER Idol to become the successes they were...but you could see them becoming successful even during Idol. That's the issue with Idol in general...those were the only 2 seasons where they had ACTUAL stars on the show. People will argue that Adam Lambert was their equal...but he went and messed that up for himself losing half of his fans in his first public appearance after Idol. As for Lauren, there's just some appeal about her. People want to root for her. It probably goes all the way back to the auditions where she made a huge impression on the judges, America (and yes...Nigel Lythgoe)....and that personality you speak of? She used to have so much of it it was sickening and now it's almost non-existant. I think she's star-struck or something.

If anyone had a mass market appeal of who is left...I'd have to disagree with you and say that it's Lauren. She's pretty, has a good voice and people seem to like her. Does that mean she'll win? No Does that mean she'll have success like Carrie and Kelly? No It just means that people are inclined to like her in THIS season. Of course probably having said all this, she'll probably go home tonight! LOL

Glad you liked the FRIENDS reference. Having been an obsessive fan of the show, I definitely miss it too!

Nicole said...

Oh, Mike, I think you're starting to hit a little below the belt with Jacob and his effeminate qualities.  I agree with you that I'm sick of him and think it's past time for him to go home, but it has nothing to do with his gay mannerisms.  He's a talented singer, and I do not agree that he belongs in a Vegas drag show.
I loved Haley tonight.  Even her gramatically incorrect Gaga song, which I disagreed with the judges on.  And House of the Rising Song, one of my fave songs, was FAB!  Wow, I can't believe Haley is my favorite left in the competition.  Good for her for changing my mind so dramatically.
Scotty was the only other one that I liked last night.  I do think he's going to win this thing. 
Ugh, I still think Lauren is SO mediocre.  I don't get her draw.  And Durbin, as I've said before, just doesn't have THE VOICE.  Great performer, yes.  Great singer, not by a mile.  Jacob's Chris Brown song choice was fatal for him, I think.  It was awful.  I don't care that the second one was much better, it shouldn't save him.

Mike V. said...

"Call me insensitive or shallow. I don't care!!! You're all thinking it too!"

Nicole - I appreciate your advice, but I stand by my comment above (except maybe the "you're all" part. It's probably "most of you all"). Yes, maybe it's a little below the belt but I also think he's asking for the comparisons by his song choices and some outfit choices. And I've held my toungue (or fingers) this for a while. But the bowtie outfit last week was the straw that broke the camel's back. I have no doubt that it is partly the reason why he cannot be taken seriously. I have already commented and said he has a great voice and his range is ridiculous. But the other qualities he brings to the tune are just not that marketable. Maybe I was rude in the way I brought it up, but I'm writing this for entertainment. Sometimes entertainment can be offensive! But some people are laughing on the inside! I'll take back the RuPaul comment...but come on...any reference to FRIENDS is just funny! :-) lol

There is plenty to make fun of me with. You can't see me but I'm bald! Go with that :-)

love the grammar comment on the Gaga song lol So true! Haley was doubt.

Scotty - yeah, I think he's probably good to go for the finale and the crown. But we'll see!

Lauren - I understand why some people don't get the appeal. She's definitely not the best in the competition...but I stand by the fact that people admire her perserverence and noted improvement over the weeks. That's the appeal.

Back to Jacob. I know what you're doing by calling the "no air" thing a Chris Brown song choice. But let's be real and honest. It was a Jordin Sparks song choice and that's part of the problem I was trying to address!
(A song by the artist Jordin Sparks "FEATURING" Chris Brown)

Ian said...

In Mike's defense, I will say that he isn't the first blogger I've read who's suggested that Jacob should perform in a drag show. Several people were saying the same thing about him back in Hollywood.

Mike V. said...

Thanks Ian. Oh yeah, there are TV critics tweeting all the time with no remorse about Jacob and his feminine tendencies. What I have done here is mild in comparison. Which is why I'm not very remorseful! lol

Mike V. said...

And let's not forget that even the other contestants have called Jacob a "DIVA" on the show. If that's not begging for this kind of attention to be drawn to him, then I don't know what is. Surely, they got Jacob's permission to air that stuff before they just went ahead and did it.

Nicole said...

Yeah, I felt kind of bad for the criticism right after I posted it because I do find your writing funny and entertaining.  And I totally think that people in the public eye are game for some sport.  I don't disagree about Jacob's mannerisms, he is TOTALLY a diva, and his tendancies are sometimes comical when he wears things like that clown suit. I'm not SOOO PC that I don't poke a little fun at people (and he's obviously a good sport, because he heard all his colleagues calling him a diva).  I mean, I'm obviously not too sensitive when I always loved what Simon had to say! I just take issue with just pegging him as someone that should be a drag show performer because of his mannerisms.  Flamboyant character, funny as it may be at times, does not equal drag show!  I think he's proven by making it to the Top 5 of American Idol that he is better than that.
Gotcha on the Jordin Sparks song correction.  I just couldn't think of the name of the song, and Chris Brown was the first of the two dueters names that I thought of, so I said it for identification purposes only.  Oh, and I'm leaving the bald thing alone - my husband is bald and beautiful :)  Totally cool with the bald when you just let it happen!  If you pull a Trump, on the other hand, you're definitely fair game for me.

Mike V. said...

@Nicole - Don't feel bad. I definitely expected to get some backlash for just going for those jokes! I appreciate the props but it's really okay to let me have it! Just be ready for me to defend myself or at least "justify" my actions lol

I agree I may have gone a little too far with the DRAG stuff. But once I had Chandler's Dad in my head...there was no going back lol I almost went one step further and referred to his show Viva Las Gaygas (Gegas??)....but I thought THAT was one step too far :-) Totally agree Jacob is very talented and my comments weren't meant to be slight against that. Really just a slight against my frustration that he's still on the show after so many weeks in the bottom 3. For the most part, the entire top 13 were very talented this year. But after weeks and weeks...certain contestants get on my nerves. Jacob is the big winner this year! I really thought it would be Haley or Scotty...but Scotty I'm actually happy for his success...and Haley has grown on me a bit. Crazy!

No prob on the Jordin Sparks thing...i was just on a roll had to keep going! lol funny was it that Randy was listing names of artists Jacob shouldn't try to be like...and he said Rihanna and Chris Brown back to back? lol Ahhh good times.

The greatest thing about going bald (early too...I was 19 when it started so I've been living with it for awhile) much less maintenance! Take the clippers and chop it all off. It's a beautiful thing! I did used to try the combover back in the day but I was just in denial that I was losing the hair in my 20s! lol

Joe Clarkson said...

Sooo I just watched Jennifer's performance, I really wish she was a better singer, because I really like her.

Last night...

1. James- I appreciated the emotion that James put into his second song, but I wasn't crazy about either performances.

2. Jacob- If he doesn't leave tonight, I might not watch the rest of the season. No air was ATROCIOUS!

3. Lauren- I thought she had a really great night. She's got a great future ahead of her. She's still my frontrunner. I'm crazy about her.

4. Scotty- LOVED GONE! I thought it was his best performance. I was excited to see the entertaining side of Scotty. I don't think there's a way he can lose.

5. Haley- Best of the night! I don't care what the judges say. The Gaga song suited her well, and she tore the house down with her last song.


Mike V. said...


Ian said...

Well, no surprises tonight. Jacob seems like a good guy, but it was his time to go.

Interestingly enough, this is only the second time in "Idol" history that the Top 4 have had an even gender split. The other was in Season 4.

iron said...

Yey for Haley! Top 4. Who could've predicted she'd stay this long coming into the top 24. I sure didn't. I even thought that she didn't deserve being on that top 13 let alone the top 4. I stand corrected though. She deserve where she is now. She's the only contestant right now that's showing effort, everybody else seems comfortable and they're not even trying anymore. She knows that she's not a favorite so she had to work harder than everyone else.

Lauren and Jacob was the bottom 2, eh? I was relieved to see Jacob finally getting axed this week, which is a month too late, in my opinion. I have to be honest, I actually was hoping for a second there that it would be Lauren getting the boot. I thought it would be funnier to watch. Maybe next week?

I am really hoping for a Scotty-Haley finale. I think it's possible. Haley has a slim chance of winning, but it would still be nice if she ends up being the runner-up.

Mike V. said...

@Joe - Way to join the party during the elimination airing! LOL j/k Good quick critiques on each contestant. Looks like Lauren may be in a bit of trouble though. She could totally redeem herself next week though. We'll see.

@IAN, please tell me you look this stuff up and are not just a library of Idol information! LOL I used to be able to stay on top of it but once seasons 6 through 10 happened...there's just too many contestants to remember! lol
Yeah, Jacob was definitely a good guy and I'm sure a fun guy but it was definitely his time to go. But I'll get to that in my mini-recap.

@IRON - I never would have predicted Haley making it this far...but now that she has...she might be a threat. We'll have to see! As for Lauren, yeah things aren't looking too good for her. We'll see! Mini recap will be my next post!

Mike V. said...

Top 5 Results

YAY!!!! Jacob bit the dust! I know I know, that's mean but I think he was getting on most people's last nerve. Maybe I went a little too far in my recap and crossed the line into that "forbidden territory" but I do feel that in year's past, certain judges may have crossed that line in creative and analagous ways. Bottom line, Jacob was a good kid. The world can do with genuinely happy people like him and his excitement is probably infectious (if not a little annoying!). I wish him all the best, but as far as his Idol run was his time. No question.

Yes, I was scared that it might be Lauren, especially when Ryan utters those words "you MIGHT be surprised." Yes, he says it almost every week, but he's effective with it! What this showed is Lauren IS vulnerable. And maybe she doesn't have what it takes to win it all. I think we all have known for weeks that this is Scotty's to lose (despite what Randy says about James). We thought Lauren was somehow getting lots of those votes too. And maybe she is. The "Unchained Melody" must have hurt her more than I thought it would. Not going for that note is just a big NO-NO! Even Jimmy agreed with us!

So, the gradual shocker -> we're at the top 4 and Haley is still with us. CRAZY, right? And the craziest part about it is, I think we don't mind as much as we did back at the top 13. Can she win? Eh, I'm not so sure about that. But, I think she can ruffle a few feathers before this thing is over. She might be even able to take down Lauren and James in the process. But, we'll have to take that on a week by week basis. I think whatever the case, one of the girls goes home next week. Unless we're in for a Chris Daughtry or Tamyra Gray surprise next week and James goes home. Then again, I'd rank Tamyra and Chris over James's talent any day of the week! (and yes, I know Chris went home in the top 5 not top 4)

And of course, they did the infamous put a few contestants on one side and a few on the other side and put the top vote getter (though the never say that) in the middle. They changed it up this year and told Scotty he was safe first (of course, now that I'm thinking about it, maybe they do that every year too). And yes, Ryan cleared up that last week's results were in random order (thank you Nicole!) so Scotty has NEVER been in the bottom 3. They asked him to stand with the group he thinks is safe. I know they do it almost every year, but the year I remember most is when Taylor Hicks was asked to do the same challenge. The reason I'm reminded is because Taylor Hicks was far and above the most popular contestant on Idol in season 5. Regardless of if anyone else was more talented, there was no way he was going to lose. If you go by again this year, I don't think it's much of a spoiler to say that Scotty has been following the same path. Once he uttered the "Baby Lock dem Doors" on that audition platform, this competition was his to lose. If anyone told me he'd win back at the top 13, I would have laughed in their face. But, he definitely has grown in this competition into a confident young man and a polished performer. The voice? Well, no one can deny those low notes are hypnotizing. The rest of his voice works enough for him to get by. But it's his stage presence is just an amazing thing to see. And his off performance personality is entertaining too. I think he has the full package this year and we all know he'll be a successful country star. And I'm still calling it that Josh Turner will be at the finale to sing a duet with him. And you'll see what a REAL Low Voiced country crooner sounds like!

(continued in next post)

Mike V. said...

I hate to say it's 100% in the bag, so I'll give it a 90% so there's a chance for something to change in the final weeks. We'll see what happens! Here's my review of the rest of the night:

- Lady Antebellum revealed their new song. Sounds like it will be the Mrs. and my new Karaoke duet song. Love that trio, they put out some great music. I recommend the purchases if you haven't!

- Jennifer Lopez performed "On the Floor" and I believe the bald guy on stage with her is named Pitt Bull? I'm getting old. Anyway, the viewing party at my house (wife, mother in law, me) deduced that the J-Lo segment HAD to be pre-taped. There is no way she got changed and unglittered that quickly back into the same outfit she was wearing previously! It all seemed a bit shady and they've done it in the past with pre-taping performances and trying to fool us that it's live. Either way, she still put an amazing routine together for what it was. I don't commonly listen to dance music, but on occassion I'll rock out to it in my car with the windows closed (God forbid someone hears me!!)

- Hell's Kitchen stint was actually pretty funny with the omelette cook-off. Even the blind taste test was a good time. At least Lauren was able to win that!!

Okay, I think I've written enough for now. Look forward to hearing what everyone else has to say! And if not, then we'll continue the discussion after next week's performances. See you then!

Nicole said...

I was laughing about our comments during the show last night when Jabob was jumping up and down and clapping and shrieking during the Gordon Ramsey bit :). Let me reiterate - I am TOTALLY down with making fun of these kids. Scotty looks like Alfred E. Newman, Haley sounds like cookie monster, etc etc. But I'm not going to say that Haley should only perform on Sesame Street. She's obviously more talented than that. Yep, Jacob is effeminate and comically so at times. But that doesn't mean he's only good for drag shows!

Anyway, the results were predictable, the bottom two were right on, and I would've been floored if Jacob hadn't gone home. And, I'll say again like last week - why isn't Jimmy Iovine a judge?!?

Mike V. said...

Nicole - don't worry, I got your message loud and clear. And I hope you know I didn't actually THINK that's all he was good for. It was just a joking comment out of frustration that he was still there. Bad taste or not, I thought it was funny so I went for it! lol All 13 kids were great talents this year but yes, they always beg to be made fun of!

Agree on Jimmy. He'd be a good addition next year if they decided to go that way. But then they shouuld eliminate a judge. I guess I'd have to vote Steven Tyler. While he is entertaining for all the wrong reasons, he doesn't add much value with his pre-written quips and phrases lol

Ian said...

Since I'm the library of Idol information, I think it's my duty to correct you and say that Chris Daughtry did in fact go home in the Top 4 rather than the Top 5. Therefore, your comparison to Tamyra Gray (who also left in 4th Place) works perfectly.

Mike V. said...

lol funny because I wasn't going to say anything but figured you'd correct me if I got it wrong. I should have let it be! lol thanks :-)