With four simple words splashed across the screen at the top of this week’s American Idol Top 7 (Part Deux) results show, fans of Phillip, Colton, Skylar, Jessica, and Joshua clutched their throw pillows and began saying their novenas.
Yeah, these fan bases paused to enjoy the pleasures of Kris Allen’s inspirational new single, “The Vision of Love,” — and to hit the mute button when two neon-clad cavepersons crawled out the bottom of a tequila bottle and vomited some notes (and probably some phlegm) into the audience.
But then it was time to get down with the ugly business of sending home one of seven very evenly matched, very talented contestants.
Before we dish those results, though, a few thoughts on the telecast:
* I was so aghast at the hideous staging for the group performance of “Dancing in the Streets” — So. Many. Balloons. — I forgot to pay attention to the vocals. Hollie and Joshua’s synchronized moves were a total kick, though, and confirmed my belief that reality-show BFF-dom can indeed help a contestant’s popularity.
* I know I’m an impartial fanboy, but Kris Allen’s “The Vision of Love” really is a beautiful song, and his performance tonight had more magic than a Pegasus flying over a double rainbow. Okay, the staging for the opening third — with Kris repeatedly disappearing from my TV screen as he played piano on a slowly spinning platform — was inscrutable (and a little infuriating), but that uptick in the melody on “someone tell this girl she’s beautiful” made everything better.
* Ten years from now, Idol historians will probably call Phillip’s libidinous “Hey, what’s your number? Does your daddy let you date?” — captured on video backstage Wednesday after his post-performance flirtation with J.Lo — the turning point in the race for the Season 11 crown.
* Okay, so the feedback Elise got from the judges on Wednesday was drawn-out, ineloquent, and occasionally ridiculous — showing emotion (at least in her music) isn’t really one of her problems — but I wonder if she’s aware she’s probably not going to score too many new voters after her surly response to Ryan Seacrest asking if she thought the judges were tougher on her than her competitors. “Yeah, definitely,” Elise sighed, going on to describe the feedback she’s received from J.Lo, Randy, and Steven to be “disheartening a little bit,” and that it makes her “feel a little discredited sometimes.” Look, I’m all for railing against imbalances at the Idol judges’ table, but in this case, I’d have appreciated it if Elise had followed up her “definitely” by owning up to the fact that her choice and execution of “Let’s Get It On” simply didn’t work on Wednesday. Sometimes a bad critique and a bad performance simply go hand-in-hand.
* I didn’t agree with everything armchair quarterback Jimmy Iovine said in his pre-recorded snippets, but at least dude didn’t bore me. He knocked Colton’s look, sound and moves on his Gaga cover (calling it a cross between “1985 Billy Idol on TRL, and Spider-Man on Broadway“). And he had an a-ha moment that Jessica has been covering music that’s too old for her (i.e. “Tray a Little Tenderness). But with five weeks of live performance shows left before Season 11 is history, isn’t it premature for him to be definitively saying Phillip — a guy whose performances he’s been very critical of in recent weeks — belongs in the Final 2?
I guess that’s a discussion for another day. For right now I need to give you some piping hot results action!
Sent Directly to Safety (In
No Particular Chronological Order)
Sent to the Bottom 3
First One Sent Back to Safety
“I have to apologize,” said Colton, when asked for his reaction to his ouster — despite the fact that he’d never before been in the Bottom 3. “I wasn’t myself last night.” Colton then promised not to stray from his comfort zone when he makes his post-Idol record, and delivered an emotional rendition of Lifehouse’s “Everything” to close the show. Gah! And just when I was starting to warm up to the idea of his inevitable hometown visit!
What did you think of Top 7 results? Did Colton deserve to get booted? If not, who should’ve been sent home? And could anyone have predicted a Top 6 with only two male contestants? Sound off in the comments, and for all my Idol news, interviews, and recaps, follow me on Twitter @MichaelSlezakTV!Follow @MichaelSlezakTV