Reality Check: Are Idol's Guitars Unfair? Plus: Cruelty Bus; Spencer, Jessica & Keith Imbroglios!

American Idol‘s Hollywood Week is known for psychological torture, emotional devastation and vocal collapse of its various contestants. But it’s also a place where unlikely stars are born.

In this week’s installment of Reality Check, my cohost Melinda Doolittle and I talk about incoming producer Per Blankens’ new “Cruelty Bus” twist, plus the contestants who stood out — good and bad — in the early stages of Season 13 Hollywood Week.

RELATED | Pilot Season 2014: Scoop on This Fall’s (Possible) New Shows and Who’s Starring In Them

Spencer Lloyd’s “Lyricgate.” Jessica Meuse’s “Stagemom-gate.” Keith London’s “Pronoungate.” We discuss ’em all — plus the general awesomeness of Majesty Rose, Jena Asciutto, Kenzie Hall and more.

RELATED | American Idol Group Rounds Recap: There Is No ‘C’ or ‘R’ or ‘A’ or ‘Z’ or ‘Y’ in Team

Press play below for the whole enchilada, plus producer Jason Averett’s addictive, righteous pop cultural clips; Melinda’s controversial theories on a possible (temporary) guitar ban; and my terrible demands to stop several singers from moving to the next stage of the competition.

And for all my Idol-related recaps, videos, interviews and exclusives, 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. Kate says:

    Idology (I refuuuse to call it Reality Check, out of protest for the fact that you’re going to talk about the Voice when it returns) is the reason Mondays aren’t a complete waste.

    • Kate says:

      to clarify: nothing wrong with the Voice, though I don’t watch it, but these packages are already not long enough for my tastes. We were spoiled in season 10 with all those 3-parters. Also, Slezak, you’re a hardcore Idol fan and Melinda is from Idol! Your in-depth analysis and history with Idol is what makes Idology/Idoloonies so special. Folding in other reality show rip-offs takes away from the specialness of Idol.

      • Kevin says:


        • Amy says:

          Agreed, agreed, agreed!! I don’t want the waters muddied in these segments with Idol? It would change it for me and I’d be less interested in watching. I had thought “Reality Check umbrella” was still going to deal with them in separate videos (though that did seem like a daunting task.) No. Just no. I agree for all the reasons Kate gives above. It’s not about us just “not accepting change”, but I really think it alters what Idology and the Idol recap has delivered so well thus far. I don’t want the Voice or anything else folded in to that!

        • LizzieB says:


      • Tusk says:

        Yup, tried and tried, can’t get into the voice. Longing for the S10 like 3 part analysis, so these one episodes are already too short for me, I enjoy them so much. Will be sad when you start talking voice and shorten comment on Idol more than it already is :/
        (The Slayer reference, a further reminder of just how good and fun Idoloonies and Idol coverage was back then…sigh)
        I guess, we’ll just have to be grateful w/ what we do get, but I just can’t help but think of Dickens’ Oliver with my empty bowl, “Please, sir, may I have more (Idology)?” ;)

      • jabbathewocket says:

        At this point I would rather watch Melinda and Mike for an hour every day than even watch the actual shows :P Not sure if that says more about me than it does about the shows or Reality check.. but its out there.. Come on Slezak hook us up with more !

      • noa says:


      • Timmah says:

        Idol isn’t that special. It’s a ripoff of other shows that came long before it.

      • james says:

        Agreed!!! Please don’t make it about The Voice!

      • Lunakit says:

        Thank you for summing that up so well, Kate. I’m still feeling the loss of the 3-parter Idol recaps, and now to have to share the paltry 10 minutes a week with another show too?!

        Michael and Melinda were talking this week about favorite contestants like Jade being cut without explanation….. and that feels EXACTLY the same as the Idol recap being diminished minute by precious minute without a word. *Frustrating!*

    • claudiacostachaves says:

      I couldn’t possibly agree more. Great, great, GREAT job, Mr Slezak and Ms Doolittle!

    • sg54 says:

      Indeed! I’m not saying I don’t like The Voice either; I do, and it would be nice to maybe have a five minute video for it. But why can’t they make Idology longer? Do they not agree that it is one of the best things that has happened to our weekly lives? Its so frustrating!

    • GG says:

      Melinda, I love you but the stage mother was spot on. The girl about whom she spoke is an @#$ *&()!. The girl with the red in her hair who disses every one deserves to be chwed out by a mom. I wil look up the name of the aforementioned witchy subjuct

      • GG says:

        oops the words chewed and subject should have been corrected…my apologies

        • GG says:

          The stage mom was correct in dissing Jessica Muse. Jessica is a meanie and an @(* @#(_ The stage mother was spot on regarding her rant about Jessica. The daughter of the stage mother was adorable…by the way

  2. Montavilla says:

    Finally! I’ve been Jonesing all day for this!

  3. SuggahNyerTeeth says:

    I loved the way you started the show……hope you keep it!

  4. Teeny Bikini says:

    Gawd, I love you. RealityCheck makes me so happy… Two things:

    1) I think Jessica deserves some slack. I mean what are you supposed to do when someone’s mom is acting like Voldemort? Seriously. I think Jessica did just fine handling an incredibly bizarre situation. Just sayin’.
    2) If you have an advantage in a competition, use it – ie, if I know how to play guitar or know a song you don’t, oh well – them’s the breaks.

    Majesty Rose for the win… Is it too early to say that? I heart her. ;)

  5. Nows says:

    One of the trade offs for hearing so many great auditions is that you’re not going to be able to keep tabs on everyone that did well. I think your Jade story is the sacrificial lamb to the new format. Unfortunate, but probably unavoidable.

    • Scooby says:

      Plus we tried to say it on last week’s column comments, Jade was trying to be Amy Winehouse, not Jade. If you criticize a kid for trying to sound like Eddie Vedder. well she was doing the same thing. Jade was nobody’s victim. I’d like to have seen what she did, but she obviously wasn’t a knockout or Harry would’ve fought to keep her. Assume she screwed up and move on. Also, whatever they may say about the Spencer/Megan/Alyssa situation, yes the girls should’ve tried harder but he was an unprofessional douche. You rehearse with your group. You don’t just sit off and let them deal with it. He was setting them up. You could tell he was a little proud of himself for it too. Spencer Lloyd gets the villain edit and kinda seems to deserve it which is a shame because he didn’t have to do that to earn his way through. Jessica mentioning the drama that follows her may be just badly representing the fact that she’s not a doormat. If someone tries to bully her she doesn’t stand for it. Not the worst thing if she’s trying to survive as an artist. I bet Pink is the same way. My thought when the stage mommy dearest was saying “As God is my witness” was lady, if God is your witness, I’m counting on a guilty verdict.

  6. donna says:

    the playing field is not equal in real life as well. musicians have an advantage and it should be expressed (although of course, giving the others musicians to work with is also important!) it’s like women with a sense of style have an advantage, same for good looking people. the advantage continues after the show as well, and since AI is looking for artists ith longevity– these advantage should be shown as early as possible.

    • catlover04 says:

      I could not agree with you more. I personally have loved the addition of instruments during the audition process and sometimes it doesn’t work to a person’s advantage if they can’t showcase themselves well for example, the contestant who was too focused looking at his fingers while playing his guitar and got criticized for it…can’t remember which one that was, sorry. I’ve never seen this blog before. Found it interesting. :-}}

    • Peg says:

      What I heard was an annoyed Keith Urban & HCJR when a so called musician brought out of tune instruments to the stage. Playing an instrument badly isn’t necessarily an advantage.

  7. jake says:

    Thank you Michael — could not agree more about the if I were a boy song, so odd.

  8. Danny says:

    Hey Michael, After a Reality Check it’s not usually an issue, but after your posts on Wed & Thurs, could ya give a heads up to your readers to please not give any hints of spoilers? If you give a new list of who ya think should make it, odds are 10 to 1 someone’s gonna come and say either “Michael’s really close in his predictions” or “Michael’s gonna be disappointed.”
    Then someone will say the’d prefer no spoilers (could be me, but there’s others). The original person is gonna reply with “but I only blah blah blah” which will actually give away more.
    Your blog is great. I’ve been checking it out since Season 10. I even went back and found your older stuff (great interview w/ Siobhan btw). It’s just dicey reading the comments until the live shows because I don’t know if anyone’s going to spoil the results again.

    • Name That Tune says:

      You just put a disclaimer out there but remember TVLine is about spoilers. If you don’t want things spoiled, don’t read the comments.

      Only 2 more episodes of Hollywood week and we get The Top 15 girls next Tuesday and the Top 15 guys next Wednesday. That should tell you there isn’t much left to spoil…

    • karenb says:

      Danny-go back to S7 and S8 with Idolatry. Kristin with Glasses. Hil-ar-i-ous.

  9. Danny says:

    I enjoyed the Slayer intro. I hope that starts every episode. It’s neat that Leah got a lil shout out. I’m with Jessica in her dealing with stage mom. She reminded me of the Season 11 stage mom. Brielle I think was the contestant. Brielle said how everyone in her group considered her mom like a 2nd mom. No Brielle, your group considered your mom to be a meddling hag, they’re just decent kids who are too nice to say it.

  10. Cub says:

    YES!!! I’m so glad I can finally unsubscrbe from that annoying ENTV youtube channel and subscribe to your new TVLine youtube channel. I hated getting multiple daily minute and a half videos of “celebrity” gossip spamming my youtube feed. I only ever subscribed to ENTV for Idology, Reality Check and Spoiler Alert.

  11. MoreBliss says:

    I have always looked forward to the Jason/Michael (and now Melinda! Yay!) recaps more than the actual show.

    Now I like (so far, touch wood, put the go in gokey) the actual show. I ADORE the judges! Keith joked about Randy taking the chair the second Harry pretended to leave it! Jenny from the Block was not amused ’cause she’s had to be on a panel with him before!

    I am laughing in actual enjoyment at the show.

    I really liked the Backstreet Cowboys. Anyone else?

  12. Sarah says:

    For me, it is all about Majesty, Jena and Malaya.

  13. Tony says:

    One issue on Keith London, which I haven’t seen Slezak bring up: right before he sings “If I Were a Boy” he talks about making sure you stand out and are noticed. There’s a part of me that thought it was a stunt, a way for the judges to remember him. I think they should have been able to get past that pretty quickly and judge him based on voice/tone, etc., but I don’t mind Harry’s comment of “Oh, I get it, you’re trying to be cute.”

    • donie says:

      In past seasons, judges have remarked favorably on the effect of contestants singing songs well known for an “opposite” gender performer’s version. I wasn’t familiar with the song and thought maybe it was an original and that’s why the judges were confused about the pronouns, though even their reaction seemed extreme and rude. Knowing that it’s a song they knew and he was singing it just the way they knew it, their being so disturbed and distracted seems rather ridiculous.

      • Peg says:

        We should be serious here. This was JLo showing you why she is a lightweight. Confused about the gender? That’s must be why Idol is paying her $17 million – to point out gender issues.

      • marie says:

        Thanks, donie, I THOUGHT that in past seasons judges did comment favorably on some such “gender-switched” performances (darned if I can remember one specifically, though). “Ridiculous” is the perfect word for the judges’ incomprehensible reactions.

        • Tess says:

          If I recall correctly, one of the times judges praised not changing pronouns in a song was when Crystal Bowersox covered “Maybe I’m Amazed”.

          In this particular case though, I think the issue with the pronouns was not that he didn’t change them, but that the song is meant for a woman to sing as she’s saying she’d be a better man than the man she’s addressing in the song because he doesn’t know how to treat a woman properly and she would know because she is one; when a guy sings it the whole meaning of the song falls apart because it alters the perspective. Contestants should be judged primarily for their voice and performance ability, but a singer needs to understand the song they are singing or else they cannot convey the meaning of it to the listener – if the judges were so confused by the choice that they were too distracted to listen to him, then that should go against him because it shows a lack of awareness in the meaning of the song. Similar to when Harry commented about the one 15 year old singing a song that felt too mature for her age. If a singer doesn’t understand what they are singing then it makes it that much harder for them to give the proper emotion to the song and the performance will just fall flat.

          • Peg says:

            Despite JLo and her inability to listen, the reality is he was playing an instrument that was out of tune and his voice was weak. That’s what irritated Harry. On this point I’m on the same page as Harry. They gave him the chance to sing a different song without the guitar and there wasn’t much of an improvement. M&M are making much to do about nothing.

    • Peg says:

      “I don’t get it he’s trying to be cute. ”
      Harry was saying that the performance wasn’t that great because his voice was weak and he was playing an out of tune guitar. So yes, he was trying to be cute to cover his witnesses. They gave him there’s a chance to sing without the guitar and it didn’t make any difference.

      We should never confuse Jennifer Lopez comments with legitimate criticism. She distracted Harry during the performance but ultimately Harry judged this man on performance not his choice of pronouns.

  14. Tony says:

    I did notice how Marielle Sellers, who was so pimped during the audition rounds, got very little footage during Hollywood Week. It seems that the producing staff tried to even out the playing field a little, letting other’s shine. I loved her audition and (while I was hoping to see more from her) I’m glad I’m not getting sick of her because of over-exposure.

  15. marie says:

    I totally understand Melinda’s point about contestants with guitars and pianos having an advantage. But I happen to really enjoy hearing them sing with accompaniment, and I think her idea about having musicians available to play guitar or keyboards for auditions is a great idea. They might not want to spend money on that, though.

    Although I try not to become attached to any contestants before the live shows, Majesty Rose is beginning to make me relent. She is wonderful.

    • karenb says:

      I thought Melinda’s idea was a good one too. I think it would help even out the playing field.

      • Tess says:

        It did seem like those in the airplane hanger that performed with an instrument had slightly better luck making it to the next round than those that did not. I do think maybe the first Hollywood round with the rows of 10 singing solos should be an acapella only round so the judges are solely judging based on the voices and who can stand out as a performer on their own. Everyone gets an even playing field in the last solo round in Hollywood when they all can perform with a small band, if I’m not mistaken, but that still means there are people there who maybe have never performed without an instrument. it would be nice to see if those people are as good without a guitar as they are with it or if the guitar is what makes them compelling.

    • My Alter Ego says:

      I agree with Melinda’s point completely. In fact, I’m glad that she made, because I been feeling a little sympathetic for those who come on and have to sing acapella. Some of them do that very well (although I haven’t heard too many this year), but the addition of some chords and fills/riffs when one isn’t singing adds a “finish” to the snippets that is lacking for those who don’t have that it. It isn’t fair. The playing field doesn’t feel even.

      If Majesty Rose has the staying power that Melinda was suggesting, I know I’m going to be in need of a thesaurus! I’m certain that I’ve already exclaimed that I find her refreshing, but right now that’s my “go to” description of her. She steps up to the mike with confidence, but neither arrogance nor drama. She has a great sense of phrasing. Actually, as odd as this may sound, her performance demeanor reminds of Crystal Bowersox.

    • Name That Tune says:

      One of the risk you take by adding 2 judges who are both singers and musicians is you build a bias into the process. Harry and Keith both are musicians, JLo is not, and barely qualifies as a singer. No one should be surprised at all the guitar-playing, piano-straddling contestants.

  16. marie says:

    I’m not about to label Jessica “drama queen” just yet: not before we see unedited live shows.

    • McFudge says:

      Agreed. First she gets a group with a kid who apparently can’t sing harmony (and to be as kind as possible, if you’ve never done it, it isn’t easy) and a kid who had to drop out because he was sick. Then she’s with a bunch of younger kids, one of whom has the stage mom from hell. After a long, long night, I sure wouldn’t be interested in standing for that kind of BS. Why was the mom even allowed to participate in what the contestants were doing, anyway? I get that underage contestants can have their parents with them, but why they should be able to give input is beyond me.

      All that said, Jessica couldn’t have looked more uncomfortable singing that song (which she wouldn’t have chosen for herself anytime this millennium) if she had tried. The judges put her through on past performance, not that one.

  17. Raghu says:

    I was watching Majesty’s audition on youtube for like the millionth time, when I saw a comment on youtube saying that her earrings change halfway into the audition…..I don’t know what to believe anymore :(

  18. Shawn says:

    Hey Michael I agree with you on Briston or whatever his name is. The judges say that he’s has an unique voice, if my unique means grating on my nerves then yes he has an unique voice. I have to disagree with Melinda on the whole Spencer situation, if Spencer knew that song and his group-mates didn’t then he should have taken the responsibility to help them learn it. During the group rounds yes you want to make it to the next round, but you should also be willing to help your group-mates make it to the next round too. I think they were trying to give Jessica the “bitch” edit but the stage mom was way out of line.

    • Mary says:

      I agree, the girls were responsible to learn the lyrics, but a group performance should be cohesive and theirs were not. You work together as a group not solo. Michael they have so many good singers this year, or at least we were allowed to see them, that it probably is a judgement call on the judges who stay and who goes. I think many of us will be disappointed on a few of them. I believe they need a few okay singers so we can vote them out early and hopefully end up with a great top ten. The true test will be live shows. I agree with Melinda, I love guitars but to be honest I think they are over kill this year. I hope during live shows, one week is no instruments allowed. This stage of the competition should be based on their voices only.

      • McFudge says:

        The way it should work for a group is that you work through (together) what’s going to happen, then learn lyrics and what you can of your own part before coming back together to rehearse. That’s the most efficient use of everyone’s time.

  19. Mark says:

    First off, I have to say that the group show on Thursday was the first episode I’ve watched all season from start to finish. I caught a few moments here and there of the previous shows, but I basically quit watching the audition rounds about five years ago. They were a waste of time.
    I find myself agreeing with Melinda regarding the use of instruments in these rounds. While in general I consider a kid who can sing and play an instrument to be a more talented musician than a kid who just sings, I don’t think it’s fair at this stage of the game to compare a capella auditions to those with an accompaniment. At this point everyone should be on a level playing field–either a single guitar or piano arrangement. Otherwise, nine times out of ten the person with the instrument is just going to sound better, even if he/she is not a better or more original singer.
    From what I’ve seen so far, Harry is a huge upgrade over last year’s entire panel. However, that entire blow-up over the word choices that kid used was kind of juvenile. Other singers have been praised for keeping the gender consistent with the original because it honors the integrity of the song. Alison Krauss explained why she did that with some of the songs on “Raising Sand.” (For which, by the way, she and Robert Plant won Grammys). Oh, and just this week Katy Perry got blasted for changing the gender in her televised version of “Yesterday.” An iconic song shouldn’t be changed over something as trivial as gender pronouns.

  20. Jack says:

    The guy who sang “If I Was a Boy” sang “Roar” in his auditions. At some point, picking a pop song by a diva and singing it as a guy becomes gimmicky. That’s all he seemed to be into – the gimmick. Don’t pick a song for the gimmick. It’s annoying.

    Even worse was his defense that he had a “really good reason” for singing it. When prompted for said reason, he basically just made up some BS about not being judged for who you are. Really? I’d let it slide if it were his recently-deceased sister’s favorite song or something, but trotting out the whole “accept me for who I am” theme is a bit trite. He wanted to pretend he had a good justification for his gimmicky choice. That’s all. Glad he’s gone.

    • Ian says:

      I agree for the most part. Singing a “girl’s” song can be refreshing and maybe even relevatory at its best and completely uninspired and lazy at its worst.

      I understand the judges reaction because the song’s premise isn’t based on a simple thing like pronoun choice; the song is about a woman looking back on how she was treated by men and how those lessons would effect the way she treated women if she was a man. Even if he changed the pronoun to “girl” it wouldn’t make sense because the song if specifically from a women’s POV.

      I think he would’ve been better off just saying he liked the song rather than giving an overblown explanation.

      • catlover04 says:

        So agree with you!!! Where is the “like” button on TV Line? :-}} I completely understood their reaction but at the same time…thought “how rude” to be talking all the way through his audition.

  21. LeahKittyS says:

    Did you guys see on Twitter how Keith admitted using his songs to come out of the closet? I think it was really cool and kind of brave how he did that. I still have a little hop for Spencer and totally believe that Jessica can come back from this bad edit. And yes, Majesty FTW.

    • marie says:

      I don’t follow Twitter: which closet? Thanks.
      I blame the production team for the whole dust-up: one of their few missteps so far this season (another being those awful bus rides). Yes, Harry and Jennifer made the comments, and were talking throughout Keith’s performance, but the producers chose the include the footage in the show, even providing subtitles so we could be sure of what they were saying. What in the heck WAS that: We don’t like people who are “different”? Idol forced Adam Lambert to stay closeted during his season, and nothing much has changed since, even with new people in charge? I don’t know the motivation for editing in the judges’ startling, jarring comments, but I can tell you that it left a very bad taste in my mouth.

      • LeahKittyS says:

        He came out as gay. There’s an article on Buzzfeed about it, and Lyndsey Parker over at Yahoo! also has a write-up on it. And I, too, was very disappointed at how the production handled it. I think there’s a reason why, last year, we never heard about the boyfriends Paul Jolley and Devin Velez had back home.

      • Who cares if he or any other contestant is gay or not though? Straight people don’t run around yelling hey I am straight. I don’t care at all. Can they sing? Thats what matters to me and that’s it. If he has to make a production around the fact that he’s gay maybe wait until later on and do it another way. The beginning round of Hollywood week was not the time. And I didn’t have an issue with how the judges handled it. The song choice was a distraction and if you want the judges to pay attention do it so that they focus on your voice and your talent or the rest of what you have to say probably won’t get heard.

        • Shawn says:

          It is my belief that someone’s sexual orientation is their own business, but this show the straight contestants get to talk about their boyfriends/girlfriends/spouses and get to show off their kids(if they have them). Whereas the gay contestants are presented as asexual and can’t talk about their significant others. If you want AI not to be able to have openly gay contestants then the straight contestants shouldn’t be allowed to talk about their significant others or their kids. The Voice has no problems with having openly gay contestants on their show. And if memory serves me right the X-Factor had an openly gay contestant as well.

  22. LeahKittyS says:

    And I’m just watching the video now…OMG I got a shout-out! Thank you Mike and Melinda and Jason!

  23. JM says:

    LOVE ‘Reality Check’. And thank you, Jason, for the ‘Justified’ clips!

    Agree with Melinda that the other singers should have access to musicians. However, I DO want to point out that Munfar (sp??) was able to change up ‘Proud Mary’ WITHOUT an instrument.

    Oh, and Michael, sorry, but I really enjoyed Alex Preston’s rendition. Here’s hoping you change your opinion about him like you did on Kenzi, whom I love!

  24. The guy that sang if I Were a Boy, they weren’t giggling and laughing, they were trying to figure out why he chose it. It was a weird choice because he was trying to make a statement which I got but it wasn’t the place for that. I only care about if you can sing or not and his voice wasn’t good enough. For the most part I felt the judges got it right which was good to see.

  25. Leela says:

    Don’t mind the instruments, this isn’t “The Voice” after all (but even that show isn’t just about the voice), and if a would-be artist will be playing an instrument more often than not when performing professionally I’d like to hear them audition that way. They of course need vocal ability – but those who don’t measure up vocally would be weeded out during the preliminary auditions we never see. Love the recaps & creative editing, but would like more actual discussion, please – would love to hear what Melinda thinks about what Michael has said & vice versa!

  26. dwt5411 says:

    When Majesty Rose starting singing, it was like I became surrounded by harmonizing angels. Her voice is so delicately beautiful that it’s mythic.

  27. Rei says:

    Please keep the voice separate from Idol chat!

  28. aravis says:

    Michael, I hope you looked up “chaff” afterwards. If not, it’s the the outer portion of grain (say wheat, rice, barley), that is threshed before you get to the edible part of the seed.

  29. tealeaves says:

    RealityCheck was hysterical this week. Thank you guys! My favorite line was “are we back in fourth grade?” Seriously, Harry should be embarrassed at himself for being thrown that a boy sang a girl’s song. It’s really not that remarkable. My favorite image was the bus going off the cliff. But there was so much more to love, in the comments from both Michael and Melinda, and from the video clips.

    If Majesty Rose wins this year, it will be the first year since I’ve been watching where I would agree that the winner was an obvious winner since the auditions. As long as TPTB don’t start pimping her ad-nauseam, she has a real chance. I have just loved every performance from her so far.

  30. trimaran12 says:

    I agree that the instruments can give an advantage to some contestants since it can be difficult to sing a Capella. Think how many people were impressed when Bo Bice sang In A Dream when no one had tried that on AI before. Wouldn’t mind if there were designated rounds for either no instruments or having accompanists available for non-instrument players.
    Stage moms should be allowed to be present but not allowed to coach or interfere. They can sit on a couch in the corner of the room. Quietly. The show is not about how good the parent is as a coach or choreographer, but how good the contestant is.
    As for the situation with Keith London, I do agree that some contestants will perform an opposite gender song choice as a schtick. But the judges should have shut up and listened, and then discussed their feelings after the performance. Yes, the choice had a deeper meaning for KL but the judges could have listened, voiced their concern afterwards that the song choice was a gimmick and let him explain. To not give him their full attention was seriously rude.

    • Peg says:

      Only JLo had a problem with listening. Harry heard enough to know the guitar was out of tune.
      They did let him sing something else. He just wasn’t very good.

  31. Trouty Mouth says:

    I agree with Melinda in that guitars and pianos are unfair at this point. It’s a lot easier for people to stay in tune (especially with the obvious nerves at singing for the judges in a sudden death round) when they have the safety of an instrument backing them up.

  32. GeoDiva says:

    In order to balance out the fairness of instruments and vocals only, they should put all the guitar people together in the same line ups. Same for the keyboards. That way only vocals are being compared to vocals and so forth.

  33. Grandma Jane says:

    Just in case anyone is keeping score, I agree with you all about keeping the Michael/Melinda videos just about Idol. Please! Also laughed so loud at the video this week my husband came to see what was up. Much as I love Idol, the videos are even better! I still love Maj esty, and I think Spencer was a self centered mess. Also the judges were rude with Keith London, who was better than some others. Does anyone know what became of the kid from the gas station night shift? I liked him. Also liked the marching band girl with the braces. But Majesty best.

  34. Trouty Mouth says:

    Also is it just me or does Jena kind of look a bit like Adrian from The Secret Life of the American Teenager?

  35. anon idol person says:

    fyi Jade was not a nice person. She was rude to producers, other contestants and acted like she had already won once she got to Hollywood. Gone was the sweet girl that was portrayed during the Detroit audition episode. Simply put, she let it go to her head or was always like that but a good actress. They didn’t want to deal with her so she was gone.

  36. SS says:

    The words “boy” and “girl” are nouns, NOT pronouns.

  37. dj says:

    I agree with Melinda about the guitars and other instruments at this point in the competition. It gives them an unfair edge.

    I am not watching Idol, by the way, just Reality Check. I can’t stand the show itself, just your recaps and discussions. You think I could actually sit through JLo again for a whole season? Do you think I could take Randy seriously as a mentor? Get real. I’ll just have a chocolate and/or a glass of wine and watch Reality Check and feel no pain.

    • strumpett says:

      Thanks Idol, I loathe acoustic guitars now. Perhaps its that I loathe mediocre acoustic guitar players like the ones on Idol.