Last night the Idols went country, and for the most part, country wasn’t cool. Ryan opens up the show with his usual torture of Sanjaya asking if he’s safe. Randy is wearing a hat with skulls and crossbones on it tonight. Ryan immediately asks Simon about the whole controversy about him rolling his eyes after Chris gave a shout out to Virginia Tech last night. He says he normally wouldn’t comment on a press story but he wanted to set the record straight. He claims he was talking to Paula and didn’t hear Chris’s final comment. This is backed up with a video and audio clip of just that. He was in fact discussing Chris’s comment about singing nasally on purpose and he didn’t hear the Virginia Tech comment at all. I’m glad that was cleared up.
Live performances tonight will include Martina McBride and Fergie (because she’s oh so country). They go through the usual clips of yesterday’s show. They panned most people except for Melinda and Ryan reprises his interviews with people on the street. Some really hairy guy shimmies a bit and tells LaKisha she needs to move. He also tries to “smolder” to show Chris what he should be doing. The rest of the interviews were just kind of boring. It is now group-sing time on the song “I’m All Right”. I love love love Phil Vassar! They all sound pretty decent and Sanjaya nails his solo parts. They play musical stools throughout the song and change places at the verses. Jordin harmonizes with a lot of different people for duets. I’m a bit bored by the performance, but I recently saw Phil Vassar in concert and he runs around everywhere and jumps up on his piano, so I need some high energy on this song. They were decent, though, so I’ll give them a pass.
This week’s American Idol Challenge question is who was this year’s rocker? Brandon, Stephanie, or Gina? Well, duh, text C to 51555 and win that trip! Ryan goes over and sits on the couch next to Jordin and introduces a clips package of what they listen to in their down time. They all have a bunch of interesting selections and Chris sucks up to Peter Noone by showing a Herman’s Hermits CD. Jordin mentioned Fergie is her favorite right now and then Fergie appears on stage and actually sings rather than spells her song. I really like this song and Fergie usually does nothing but annoy me with her pop songs. The song, I guess, is called “Big Girls Don’t Cry” and Google tells me I’m right when I type in some of the lyrics. I think she’s singing with a back up track, though, at least for the chorus because you can hear her sing over it when the microphone gets closer to her mouth. Interesting that the guest artists get that luxury when the premise of the entire show is live performance—sink or swim. Oh, well. It was a pretty good performance from Fergie.
We’ve finally made it to the half-way point of the results show. I still don’t understand why the results shows get longer with less contestants. I think I just sat through five minutes of commercials. Then we come BACK to the Ford commercial which is to the tune of “I Ran (So Far Away)” with a stylized spy type plot where they try to steal a briefcase of some sort. Ryan gives the weekly plug for Idol Gives Back, which is next Wednesday. He mentions My Space has a new page up where you can join the “Idol Gives Back” community. The list of guest includes singers and actors alike and they promise a duet that will bring together two of the greatest artists in history. I can only hope it’s a Sanjaya/William Hung performance. Now THAT’S entertainment!
The contestants are now standing in the middle of the stage and Ryan is splitting them into two groups—the highest and lowest numbers of votes. Sanjaya goes to the right and Phil goes the other way. Jordin joins Phil and LaKisha heads over to Sanjaya to very very minimal applause. Blake goes to stand with LaKisha and Sanjaya. The crowd obviously thinks the Sanjaya group are the bottom as Chris goes to join Phil and Jordin. Melinda gets taken to the middle of the stage as Ryan recaps what the judges said about everyone. Melinda is obviously safe, but now she has to choose which group is in the top with her. She looks around and then sits down smack dab in the middle of the stage to wild applause and just smiles and shakes her head. She is told to slide to her left because Chris, Jordin, and Phil are also safe. This puts Blake, LaKisha, and Sanjaya in the bottom three. Randy thinks it’s crazy Blake is there. Blake says he’s a little surprised but it is what it is. Paula mentions that Blake’s Grandma is in the audience and she hopes Granny isn’t upset. Simon has a huge smile and says he’s “beginning to sense something here”. Of course, we still have 22 minutes left and a performance by Martina McBride before we find out who is gone. Life just needs a fast forward button sometimes.
When the seemingly never-ending commercials finish up, Ryan is sitting on the couch next to the bottom three and then we get treated to another video of the idols getting a sneak peek at Shrek 3 led by Jeffrey Katzenberg. They get a chance to voice a scene in the movie and Sanjaya is hilarious at Puss N Boots and Antonio Banderas surprises them and show them how it’s really done. We get a nice review at the end and apparently it’s like the best movie ever made the way they gushed over it. Antonio Banderas and his family along with Jeffrey Katzenberg are there live tonight and Jeffrey gets to introduce Martina McBride. She sings her latest single “Anyway”. No pre-recorded back up vocals for her! She looks amazing as always. I think doing this show is going to be great for Martina. She has never been a cross-over artist, but with this performance, she’s probably made a whole crop of new fans. She is one amazingly talented lady.
Hey! There’s Cowboy Troy and John Rich from Big and Rich in the front row there, and they don’t even get the little sub-titles they do for other stars when they are in the audience. They bring out Martina’s daughter Emma and she starts stealing the show. Emma says they are all great and Ryan calls her “Paula”. Ryan asks Martina what she thinks about the bottom three and she says America already made the decision about who is going home and quickly sends it to break as Ryan looks scared that he’s going to lose his job.
Sanjaya, LaKisha, and Blake are in the middle of the stage again. Ryan gives a nice long pause as the audience yells out names. Blake is sent back to the couch and Grandma is on her feet cheering. Ryan asks for the lights to be dimmed and Ryan recaps what the judges said yet again. After the biggest top seven vote in idol history, Sanjaya is going home. The crowd bursts into wild applause and some screeching as well. This show just got twenty times more boring. Sanjaya and LaKisha are still hugging as they show his goodbye video. It consists mostly of guest mentors saying he’s great, that crazy crying girl in the audience and hair. Ryan comforts him as he cries on stage. Now LaKisha and Melinda are hugging non-stop at the couch. Sanjaya gets his sing out as Ryan tells him he will not soon be forgotten. His voice is actually stronger even though he’s fighting back tears. He sings to the other contestants and makes up some new words. “Let’s give them something to talk about other than hair”. Farewell, Sanjaya. Thanks for spicing things up in this boring season.
I just don’t know if I can do hour long results shows without the entertainment that is Sanjaya (sniff). Who do you think will step up and be the entertaining one now? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.