|by Darla Kitt
Before the results, we were treated to a great performance by my favorite AI finalist last season, Bo Bice. He did his new single, “The Real Thing,” which was actually a pretty good song. Very catchy. And he looked great, and seemed totally happy being a new daddy. Bo suckered me in early last year with his nice-guy attitude and sincere smile. I’m sure he’ll be a great dad, and I’m really happy that his music career is soaring. He totally deserves it.
But then, I was absolutely stunned by the results of AI this week. After the performance shows, I would have bet my next paycheck on which contestants were out on their ass. Thank god I didn’t, ‘cause I wouldn’t have been able to pay my student loan this month.
Actually, I should clarify. I was right on two counts: Will and Kinnik. They’re both kicked. Honestly, I think Will should have gone last week after the Kenny Rogers fiasco, but he quickly snipped the thread he was hanging by during his James Taylor impression this week. And I’m sure that horrible hairdo didn’t help any. I do think Kinnik is good, and I really liked her sincerity, but she totally f***ed up that Alicia Keys song. Her voice was cracking all over the place Oddly enough, when she performed it tonight, AFTER she got the boot, she sounded great. She gets top honors when it comes to losing though, as she bowed out with grace and dignity.
Okay, now for the shockers. My money was on Melissa as she stood up there versus Ayla and her cocky grin. Ayla was totally confident she was gonna make it, and when she realized she was done for, she began to cry. And I laughed. The look on her face was priceless. Aw, little princess got knocked down a peg. Tee hee hee. I can see why she was voted off. Aside from being a snotty brat, her performance stunk like dog sh*t. And her dancing looked more like she was trying to pee standing up; she was squatting a lot. Unfortunately, now that she’s gone I’m not sure who I’m gonna make fun of, because I actually like the rest of the girls.
Paris did a good job with that “Conga” song I cannot stand, because it’s played at every goddamn wedding I’ve ever been to. And her Latin dancing skills were impressive. Plus, she is just so adorable and I’d kill for her hair. However, she could’ve lost the jeans she was wearing under her dress. I really don’t get that look at all. Seems like it’d be a bit bunchy under there.
Lisa was okay, but the song was totally boring. However, I was digging on her straight hair look. Katherine looked terrific, and not pregnant, in a simple black top and jeans Her version of “Think” by Aretha sounded pretty darn good, and that’s saying a lot considering Aretha is the Queen of Soul and all.
I don’t really think that Kellie (aka Naughty Little Minx) did such a hot job with that Melissa Etheridge number, but whatever. I guess people like her dumb country-ness. Again, it was quite obvious the producers were exploiting that, as Ryan just had to ask her what new fish she had for lunch last week. Do they think anyone really gives a f**k what the girl ate? No, of course not. They just wanted her to mispronounce “salmon” for a cheap laugh. Uh, huh, huh … she said “sall-mon.”
Once again, Mandisa brought down the house, this time with Chaka Khan’s “I’m Every Woman.” And you know what? I’m beginning to think she really IS every woman. She’s just plain fabulous, hands down She was belting out that song, strutting around shaking her stuff. I was bouncing around on the couch, just watching her. She is truly infectious.
Oh, back to Melissa. Yeah, I was sure she was going after her lame performance of Heart’s song “What About Love.” She had a perfectly engineered “rock girl” look going on, trying to look all tough. I resent that, because as an old-school punk rock chick, I get offended when people try to “put on” that image like a costume. So that ticked me off from the get-go. I mean, come on. All that black eyeshadow and perfectly ripped jeans, with those chains hanging off of them? Who is she trying to kid? And for future reference Melissa, the chain is supposed to be attached to a wallet, tucked into your back pocket, not just for decoration. The chain keeps you from losing your wallet in the mosh pit or when you get into a fight.
Okay, now for the boys. Yes, I was certain that I was gonna lose my beloved Dilbert kid, Kevin, especially after he butchered some song I never heard before. I felt like I was watching a middle school chorus concert. But he’s such a funny little guy, I still had my fingers crossed. It must’ve worked because he wasn’t even one of the bottom two!
Those slots belonged to Gedeon and Bucky. If I had my choice, Gedeon would’ve stayed Unfortunately, America chose differently and he got the axe. This surprised me because I thought his version of “When a Man Loves a Woman” was quite powerful, even if he still insisted on leaving his shirt unbuttoned half-way down his chest. Let me reinforce the lesson of last week to make it perfectly clear: too much man-chest = kinda gross.
Of course, I shouldn’t be too surprised Bucky stayed. There are lots and lots of southern rock fans, and they must have voted in force to keep him in the running. I’m glad to see he’s sticking with the ponytail, and his outfit was better this week, but he’s got to take the next step and scrap the ‘stache. Mustaches also = kinda gross. Oh, and how freaky was it to see his twin? I was like, “Holy sh*t, there’s two of them!” All I want to know is which parent decided on the names Bucky and Rocky? Were they hoping for a pair of hound dogs and ended up with twin boys, but decided to keep the names?
Again we had Randy and Paula gushing over Elliott, who this week we found out is deaf in one ear. Deaf! Jesus, last week his mom was all sick and this week he’s deaf. Enough with the sob stories already, I’d like to get back to making fun of him without feeling guilty for Chrissakes. I must admit that his outfit was better this week, but I hated his version of Bryan Adams’ “Heaven,” because I’ve loved that song since I was, like, 8-years-old, and Elliott ruined many years of wonderful memories for me by butchering it And what the hell is with that sheriff’s badge thing he wears around his neck all the time?
Anyway, the stand-outs were still the stand-outs, although for the second week in a row I was a little disappointed in Ace. I’m not a fan of the falsetto, just f***ing sing normal and look pretty next week, okay? Please? Chris did a good job with “Broken,” putting on a very sincere and strong performance. I also love that we found out he’s bald for a reason, because he’s REALLY balding, which just adds to his “normal guy” appeal.
We also got to see Taylor in his Easter Bunny outfit, which was adorable, because I can totally see him getting all into it and goofing around with a bunch of kids. His performance of “Taking it to the Streets” was just stellar. The vocals weren’t the greatest, but damn was he really moving up there! Not just grooving, but wiggling and jiggling and bouncing all over the goddamn place. Again, you can see him losing control and just falling into the music, letting it take over his whole body. He is awe-inspiring. And the outfit with the jeans and tan blazer made him look like the coolest English teacher ever … which is kinda hot …
So, we have our top 12! Here they are in my preferred order of best to worst.
Next week they all compete against each other, so they’ve gotta kick things up a bit to stay in it. Since Kevin’s still holding on, I would like to put in my request for a smoldering, sexy look into the camera, a la Constantine and Katherine. As the “ladies man” that he is, and since he’s probably going to get kicked off soon, I think he owes it to his female fans. At any rate, I’m looking forward to the guys and the girls mixing it up together. And ladies beware: it’s gonna take a pretty f***ing good performance to steal some votes away from Ace’s