Duets Recap: All the Right Movies

bridget carrington john legendMemo to Duets‘ “superstar” mentors: Please stop telling each week’s Bottom 2 contestants that it doesn’t matter if they get booted, that their participation on ABC’s summer reality series is only the beginning of their careers in the music biz. Sure, such soothing talk cushions the blow of elimination (or near-elimination) and it may even be true, but as a viewer, it adds to the low-stakes vibe that’s pervaded this show ever since it tossed the first two weeks of scores into the dumpster (right next to GCB) and never mentioned ’em again.

At the rate the show is going, I’m worried our sly host Quddus is going to go off script and tell the nervous contestants, “Relax, people! This show isn’t going to turn anyone into the next Kelly Clarkson or Carrie Underwood. So just enjoy the fact that 6 million people have you on in the background while they fold their laundry or play Scrabble on their iPhones!”

Anyhow, since Duets‘ special Wednesday showing put it up against another show I recap — So You Think You Can Dance — I’m a little tardy to the party, which means I’ll keep my reviews of each performance (gathered under a Movie Week umbrella) to a Twitter-esque 140 characters or less:

John Glosson (with Jennifer Nettles): “My Heart Will Go On” | For the first time in 5 weeks, I detected some flat notes from the bespectacled fella. Also: How come no one mentioned it was super boring?

Jordan Meredith (with Kelly Clarkson): “Take My Breath Away” | Plus 10 points for an unexpected arrangement, but minus 30 for tentative delivery, downward shifting eyes, and botched octave change. Sads.

Olivia Chisholm (with Robin Thicke) “Stayin’ Alive” | Loved Olivia’s red romper, but this ain’t Fashion Star. JNet said she heard a different part of Olivia’s voice. The off-pitch part? Woeful!

Bridget Carrington (with John Legend): “What’s Love Got to Do With It?” | Bridget knows how to catch a groove & she’s got some power, too. Once in a while, though, I find her voice a wee bit unpleasant. Is it just me?

J Rome (with Jennifer Nettles): “I Will Always Love You” | He’s covered Grease, MJ, Sugarland & Whitney, and has yet to hit a bum note. Dude’s as good as J.Net’s high notes were HIGH.

Jason Farol (with Kelly Clarkson): “Come What May” | If Kelly is a champagne flute, Jason’s the dishrag. Or rather, her voice is the life of the party, while his is floating limply in the kitchen sink.

Anyhow, with that said, here’s how the leaderboard looked for Week 4, followed by my own personal ranking for the night:

Judges’ Leaderboard
J Rome

My Rankings
J Rome

The singoff was a little anticlimactic: Jason covered “Mama Knows Best” with some strange vocal affectations, while Jordan tackled “And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going” with a couple pitch problems and maybe only 30 percent of the necessary conviction. In the end, it was Jordan who got the boot, and overcome with grief, couldn’t even muster some parting words for the audience. If she’d found her voice, anyone wanna bet she’d have said, “Olivia, you got lucky!”?

What’d you think of Week 5 of Duets? Sound off in the comments, and for all my reality recaps, follow me on Twitter @MichaelSlezakTV!

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. jcd says:

    The 1.1 rating says it all. No one cares about this show. It’s sad Kelly signed up for this drivel. She deserves better.

    • Stacie says:

      Kelly is fantastic. If J.Lo leaves Idol Kelly being a judge would be perfect. If not she definitely needs to continue doing this kind of thing. She was pretty right on when she was on The Voice also. The only reason I care that Jordan left, which I really don’t care, is because we’ll only see Kelly one time next week. Hearing her sing and judge is really the only reason I watch. The little blooper last night when she called Robin “Paul” was pretty funny and very real. Unfortunately the show overall is really bad. Yet, I continue to watch.

  2. jen says:

    This show is painfully predictable. John and Robin only have 1 contestant left so of course one of Kelly’s had to go (it wasn’t going to be either of Jennifer’s). Olivia should have been in the bottom two, but Jordan wasn’t long for the competition. She didn’t have anywhere near the confidence she needed. If Jason goes next that means Kelly won’t be singing so this viewer will be gone. How many more eps til this mess is done?

  3. noa says:

    why am i still watching this show? oh, right. summer. ugh.
    anyway- this show has the sometimes mediocre talent of the voice, only without the cool song choices. seriously, these are ALL songs that would make us roll our eyes while watching Idol, no? if someone does “I Have Nothing” next week i’m out. (untrue. again, summer.)

    even though J Rome is clearly the best out of the bunch, i was rooting for Jordan. i thought that she could get better, that she had a great voice and that she seemed sweet and likable. so “sads” indeed Slezak. really, Olivia and Jason have both gotten further than 2 more deserving contestants. what the hell is going on here?? it’s obvious why Olivia got to stay another week, but why keep Jason?

  4. Tim says:

    Obviously rigged so that Thicke would still have a horse for the live shows. The low ratings probably reflect that people hate rigged shows.

    • sam says:

      no, that’s not it, it’s because it was really a snoozefest the first few weeks and only now is becoming somewhat interesting.

  5. ASH1157 says:

    I keep watching this, but only because I love me some Jennifer Nettles and Kelly Clarkson! And Robin Thicke is easy on the eyes. But thanks for the suggestion on multi-tasking while it is on!

  6. Luciana says:

    I watch it for Jennifer Nettles, who I had never heard of before this show. Kelly, not so much. I think that she sabotages her protegees.

    • Robin says:

      wow…really…that’s crazy talk…Kelly would never sabotage her protegees…the show or producers may do that type of thing but she personally would never!

      • Luciana says:

        I think that she definitely sabotaged Jason last night by making him sing a song in a key that was way too low for him.. She, on the other hand, sounded great.

    • Yo' says:

      I agree. Kelly keeps choosing music and parts for herelf, not her contestant; she is just too beloved for anyone to call her out on it. I also watch for Jennifer Nettles, who pretty much floors me, but still manages not to make her contestants look lousy.

      • Calli says:

        Then why did she basically sing back-up for Jordan on “Take My Breath Away”? She had nearly no solo parts in that arrangement.

  7. Chris says:

    John and J Rome are the best singers at this karaoke party. I’d choose Jordan (killer tone) then Jason (he really can sing very well) to follow suit.

    John’s been my front runner since night one – the only person I’ve ever seen/heard that could potentially out sing JN (and she is FANFREAKINTASTIC).

    I think people take singing show / competitions way too seriously. Even the best seasoned professional can fall flat and pitchy during their umpteenth performance. It’s entertainment folks, watch, don’t watch, it doesn’t matter. They all come and go at some point. It’s the next best thing to going out to a local music hall and discovering an unknown. This way you don’t need a designated driver!

    I enjoy it because they get to sing with the artist/judges. It’s a nice change to otherwise sporadic appearances from “idol icons” and “guest performers”. A stage, a singer, and wallah.

    My preference for the night:


    JN Team all the way!

    • Karen says:

      John??? no way! I find him terribly annoying. And I’m not that fond of his voice

      the sing off should have been between Olivia and Jason

  8. court says:

    show is clearly rigged because though kellys people were bad, they were still leaps and bounds better than olivia…she shouldve been gone last week…the clear rigging has lost them one of the what, dozen viewers they have left…abc should go back to what theyre good at…making d list celebs dance and stealing shows from cbs

  9. Faz says:

    So, song choice continues to be a weak point. In one show we heard “And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going,” “My Heart Will Go On, ” and “I Will Always Love You.” Three songs that should be on at least a 10-year hiatus. And I don’t just mean on competition shows — but anywhere and everywhere. Seriously — all three in an hour and a half? Oh my, oh my.

  10. Shaun says:

    Kelly was amazing on Come What May!!!

  11. Robin says:

    I watch. Though this being on Wednesday nights has messed me up…so I watched it on dvr this evening. Kelly is hilarious…”Jennifer, John, and Paul – Who’s Paul!?” I felt bad for her with both her team members being in the bottom though. It was underserved. But like most reality tv these days it’s all fixed…I’m just going to call it now J Rome is going to win, and it will be deserved.

  12. Forwarddad says:

    Why has ABC not addressed the scoring fiasco and secret scoring? Because they don’t care either.

  13. idared says:

    If anybody is sabotaging their partner it is Robin with Olivia. What was that mess with “Stayin’ Alive”? That was a ridiculous song for her to sing. Way too high for her. Didn’t showcase her Sade’-like sultry tone at all. As I’ve said before, it is clearly more about him than his partner. I wish they’d have a rule that says another one of the superstars could save on one of the at-risk contestants thereby giving John Legend the opportunity to take Olivia under his wing. They are clearly more suitable as partners. I’m glad Jordan is gone and Jason should be next. It was a toss up. I don’t think Kelly sabotaged Jason. I just think she misjudged their talent and potential and ability to develop either as contenders. JNet and her crew are clear winners.

  14. Mara says:

    I cannot believe Jason is still on this show!! Jordan was a million times better. If it wasn’t summer I would not even watch this show because it is so rigged. Jason would never have made it in any real competition