April 2, 2009
AMERICAN IDOL 8: TOP 9: TOP DOWNLOADS: I'm So 3000 and eight, You So 2000 and Late.
Kristen the yellow lab and I are getting hit with boom boom beats so big, we're stepping on leprechaun!* (Which sounds painful and not conducive to being on the receiving end of pots o' gold. These kids today and their zany lyrics!) Nevertheless,what better way to celebrate Top Download week on American Idol? This week, the Idols were to pick from a list of heavily downloaded songs off the iTunes charts. (Incorporating a theme with product placement? Brilliant. What's next week's theme? Favorite songs listened to while enjoying a Coke?)
Ryan gives us a quick glimpse of the kids, and Kristen and I agree it looks like a televangelist convention, what with all the high hair.
Ryan brings the judges out front in a line as if they're doing a hip-hop to Soulja Boy's Superman.
Last week, the gang was flown, via private jet, to Detroit, Michigan, to tour the Motown museum and meet with Mr. Barry Gordy and Mr. Smokey Robinson. This week, they're shuttled to downtown LA to the KISS FM studio to meet with - Ryan. They look like a group of high-schoolers on a field trip. In fact, Kristen and I are pretty sure that, at some point, Adam and Allison snuck out behind the building for a cigarette.
First to perform tonight is The Anoop Dawg! He explains that he has chosen Usher's "Caught Up" because this is the type of record he would like to make. *sigh* Yep. That's how it goes down. Privileged college-town boy wears his pants low and his baseball cap backwards, and he's making plans to sip Grey Goose with Kanye. Although Anoop's got a little bit of styling going on tonight, his performance falls flat. The truth is, Anoop is a sweet guy who sings really well. But, he has no star quality or stage presence. It doesn't help that a handful of his frat brothers are in the audience, shirt tails a-dangle, applauding 'Noop like he's just scored in beer pong. Randy says he's got his swagger up. Kara accuses him of choosing that song on a dare from his frat brothers. The crowd boos, and Kara shows her own amateur status by getting flustered and upset. Ever the calm one, Paula babbles about making signature hits. Simon gets right to the point, "It was like a college-boy wannabe pop star!" (Kristen and I have been saying that for weeks. But, did anyone listen? No.) Kristen and I give him 4 mP3 players for being a wannabe - a wannabe with a good voice, nonetheless. Asher Roth has a thing or two to say to Anoop.
Here comes our Megan! As a fellow blond, Kristen is supportive of Megan and her lab-like personality. Tonight,she will perform the Lauryn Hill version of Bob Marley's "Turn Your Lights Down Low." For one moment, it seems Megan might actually do well. But, the performance disintegrates quickly into awkward, tuneless territory. Kristen has gone behind the sofa to pout, because there's no way Megan can survive this disaster, no matter how awful anyone else might be the rest of the evening. Kara says it was the wrong song for her. (Every week, Kara? When will the judges ever admit they made a mistake putting this girl through in the Wild Card? Never? Alrighty then.) Paula wants her to sit on a stool. Simon calls it boring, forgettable, and tells her no one will like it. Randy thinks she should have gone with Winehouse. Oh, Randy. Don't kick a girl when she's down. Amy has enough on her plate without having some upstart massacre one of her songs on national television! Kristen and I give her 1 used CD Player for lack of growth. Britney Spears offers consolation.
Up next is Danny Gokey, who will be singing Rascall Flatts "What Hurts the Most." Danny gets extra points for not mentioning the fact that his grandfather died last weekend, and he was away attending his funeral. He also gets points for a controlled performance with nice vocals. He's truly emoting this evening, and we like it! Paula says she will hit repeat in her car. Simon thinks it was his best performance. Randy says, "Nice, baby!" Kara was moved and got goosebumps. This week, Kristen and I don't mind giving Danny 8 1/2 iPhones and this message from Kid Cudi:
It's Allison! Kristen adores her, even when she dresses like Pebbles Flinstone after raiding Cindy Lauper's closet. She has selected No Doubt's "Don't Speak" and will pretend to play her toy guitar as she sings. It starts off very controlled and understated. But, our favorite ginger just can't help but go into shout mode. Still, it's a solid performance. Randy has mad love for Allison, but not the outfit. Kara says it wasn't her best, but was good. Paula tells her she's going right to the finish line. Simon wonders why she's dressed like something out of the Addams Family. He tells her it was like a little girl dressed up trying to be a rock star. Allison takes all their criticism in stride. Bonus points for that! Kristen and I give her 7 and a half iPod Shuffles, and a message from the All American Rejects.
Oh. It's Scott. Kristen needs to find something to chew on to help alleviate the upcoming boredom, so she opts for a couch leg. Halfway through Scott's performance, I'm ready to gnaw through something, as well. It's not that it's a bad performance. Scott is singing Billy Joel's "Just the Way You Are" while accompanying himself on the piano. Vocally, it's his best to date. But, for the love of Ray Charles, it's boring. It doesn't help that the stylists have given Scott a new "look." Apparently, he, Allison, and Adam had "Who can have the highest hair" competition, and Scott won. Plus, Scott has beautiful eyes in still photos, but they are distracting during performances. Details count on Idol, so Scott needs to have the stylists find him a cool pair of shades, pronto. Kara thinks he made a smart choice stripping down. Paula is proud of him, not because of his challenge, but because he makes her forget about his challenge - even though she's remembering it right now and reminding everyone else as well. Simon says it was his best performance by a mile. Randy calls it best of the night. Kristen and I are happy for Scott, who seems like one of the nicest guys in the competition. We'll give him 6 1/2 8 track players - points for improving, but the end result was too old-fashioned. Here's a message from Lady GaGa:
Here comes Matt! He's singing "You Found Me" by The Fray, a song currently on the charts. Kristen and I observe that Matt has been placed in the center of the sway-armed girls, to make it appear he's superstar. Last week, we were told he's a front-runner, but he ended up in the bottom 2. Will this piece of deception work any better? No. It's a tiresome performance, going on too long, with Matt showing very little range or vocal skill. Paula says it wasn't a good performance. Simon doesn't get it. Randy says he has soul in his voice, and has to let it out. Kara thinks he's a talented guy and doens't deserve to go home. Kristen and I give him 6 iPod classics and a message from Jamie Fox:
Lil's up next. She's chosen Celine Dion's "Surrender" even though the judges have told her repeatedly that they only want her singing songs by Mary J. Blige. She's wearing a lovely blue gown and a bob-cut wig - the effect of which she looks at least twice her age. The stylists are infuriating Kristen and I when it comes to Lil. She's a lovely young thing of 23 who wears her hair in a fresh, short cut. The stylists have worked overtime to bring out her inner-frump. As for the performance, Lil hits all the notes. She has a strong, amazing voice. But, her lack of training comes through in her inability to contain her thick Tennesse accent, and the odd positioning of her mouth. Also, the confident, vibrant Lil of her first audition and during Hollywood has disappeared. Randy said it was the wrong song choice. Kara wanted to hear Mariah or MARY J. Paula felt it was adult contemporary, and they don't want to hear that from Lil. Simon gave her fair warning: Her personality is being sucked out of her, and it has to stop. She's too good for that to happen."
Lil bursts into tears, but the camera quickly pans to her family where Kristen's beloved Ryan has scurried down to distract Lil's small chldren.
The camera keeps away from Lil and focuses on Ryan and children while Lil gets herself together. Kristen and I give her 7 nano iPods based on her vocal skills only. And a message from Flo Rida:
Kristen's on her back. That can only mean one thing. Adam. This week, he has chosen Wild Cherry's "Play That Funky Music White Boy" which he plans to sing while wearing mile-high early 80's hair, bell-bottom pants and a v-neck sweater. Kristen and I are having a hard time getting past the song choice. Of all the songs on the download list....??? But, in typical Adam fashion, he puts his own spin on it, and turns it into a bluesy-funky joint with a little Axl Rose thrown in for good measure. Love him or hate him, Adam's got ridiculous talent and is a fearless performer. Nevertheless, Kristen and I disagree on this one. If you're with Kristen, you hated the screaming, the dancing, the movin' to the groovin'. If you're with me, you turned around and shouted, "lay down and boogie and play that funky music 'til you die."
Where Kristen and I do agree is that Adam must NEVER dance like this again. Paula is clawing her way over the desk to get to Adam, then delusionally shouts,"Mick Jagger! Steven Tyler! Adam Lambert!" (Is that the list of men she wants to sleep with?)Simon seems highly amused and tells Adam it was brave. Randy says he's in the star zone, baby. At this point, Adam shows his professionalism by interrupting the judges to tell them he needs to recognize Ricky Minor and the band for coming up with the arrangement and working it out. Ricky takes a well-deserved bow. Then, Kara ruins the moment by telling Adam it was like Studio "57" in the place. Did you hear that whirring sound? It was Andy Warhol spinning in his grave. Nothing like having the club you helped make famous mistaken for a steak sauce. In deference to Kristen's viewpoint, I won't be giving Adam my usual 10 that I keep reserved specially for him each week. I'll be objective and give him 9 and a half Zunes for originality and masterful vocal acrobatics - points deducted because SOME people weren't likin' it. Best Idol Ever, Kelly Clarkson has a thing or two to say to Adam.
Aw. Kristen's wagging her tail so hard, I fear she's going to develop carpal tail syndrome. What's making her so happy? Her adorable little Kris! He's performing Bill Withers "Ain't No Sunshine When She's Gone" and not thinking about his wife at all while singing it! Tonight, the camera loves Kris who looks like a star, sitting at the keyboard, giving the song a delicate, soulful take.It's lovely, and the antithesis of Adam. Whereas Adam rips his heart out of his chest, holds it up to us, and says, "See this? It's broken!" Kris asks us to approach him and say, "Aw. What's a matter, baby?" Kristen and I love both styles, and that's exactly why, from this point on, we're hoping for an Adam/Kris final two. Randy says, "Yo! Dude! Best of the night! Lovin' it!" Kara practices her math skills by telling him, "Three words. That is artistry!" Paula tells him, "You took a 30 year old song!!!" Simon confirms that it was his best performance to date. So, this week, as a shout out to my pals at Royal Misfits, Kris is getting the 10 - 10 iPod Touches for a touching performance. And a message from young Miss Miley Cyrus.
Kristen and my rankings:
Defying gravity and headed to the top
Still has a shot at The Fame
Danny, Allison, Lil
The Open Door is ready to hit you in the rear on your way out: Scott, Matt
Incredibad and should go home: Anoop, MEGAN
36 million votes, therefore the most popular top 9 ever.
Obligatory lip-synced performance of Journey's "Don't Stop Believin'" now with the return of the pointy pose!
Then, the producers further throw Danny Gokey under a bus by having Ryan ask him to do impersonations of his fellow contestants. He does Matt singing Viva La Vida with a goat-voice. Anoop does a cute impersonation of Kris, and Allison a fun one of DAnny. But, Danny did not come off well. Fickle folks, these producers.
Ryan calls the contestants down and puts them in groups of three with Megan, Kris, and Matt in one group, Adam, Lil, and Allison in another, and Danny, Scott, and Anoop in the third. THen, he tries to convince us that one group is the top, one the bottom, and one in between. Yeah, Ryan. Like we don't check DialIdol and know that those groups are bogus as Danny, Kris, and Adam were the highest vote-getters.
He wants us to ponder which group had the lowest votes as we watch David Cook return to the Idol stage to perform his new single. It's disappointingly bland.
Now, Ryan starts the breakdown. Kris is safe. Matt, safe. Megan - hit the stools, please. Megan flaps her arms and caws her way over to her seat (a shout-out to her biggest fan base, Vote For the Worst). Lil and Adam: safe. Allison? Stool-worthy. Danny safe, as is Scott. To the stools for you, Anoop!
This week, instead of a creepy duet, we've got a creepy solo. Lady Gaga's in the house! Actually, it's not creepy at all but pretty fantastic. The eye zipper is the most awesome thing Kristen and I have ever seen, and Lady Gaga rocks it out.
Back for results. Allison is sent back to the Sofas of Safety. Megan is asked what she thought of Simon's criticism of her, and she tells him she doesn't care. Anoop is safe, Megan is going home unless the judges invoke The Save. When asked, Simon sniffs, "Megan, since you don't care, neither do we. We won't be using it on you. This is your swan song, enjoy it." Megan sings as badly as she has all season. Then, she bursts into tears when she gives her baby son a shout out, "I'm coming home, baby!"
The boys say goodbye to their beloved Megan
Leaving her in a lurch:
Next week, these kids sing songs from their birth year. See you then!
Thanks again to Murghi at Bored Morons for use of her brilliant screen caps. Don't forget to run over to check out the recaps and the new season of The Death of a Bromance! Luvs ya!
Posted by Zsus