I’m not sure what program aired at 8/7c during Fox’s Thursday-night lineup, but I’m almost certain it wasn’t American Idol. Not a single foreign accent was ridiculed. The overweight, the fey, and the mentally unstable came out unscathed. And no mind was paid to imbeciles in Statue of Liberty garb or other heinous costumes, desperate for the chance to alert their Facebook “friends” that they were finally getting their 15 minutes.
Nope, American Idol‘s action-packed Pittsburgh auditions focused on talent, talent, and more talent, with 11 Golden Ticket recipients getting spotlighted in the course of a single hour. In other words, Uncle Nigel has reached the prayer-answering phase of his reign over the Idolspehere. Hell, even Shane Bruce (pictured), the sole unsuccessful auditioner who scored significant airtime, had a reasonably good singing voice.
In particular, I enjoyed The Girl With the Planking Sister, The Boy Who Doesn’t Really Look Like Justin Bieber, and Chica in the Pimp Spot. (Let’s not hold it against her that three hours into Season 11, producers have already chosen to air J.Lo’s “She could win!” — and will probably do so 47 times between now and early May.)
While I work on a full episode recap that will post Thursday morning here at TVLine, I’ll turn things over to you: Who was your favorite from the Pittsburgh auditions? Sound off in the comments section, and for all my Idol news, interviews, and recaps, follow me on Twitter @MichaelSlezakTV!