American Idol: The 35 Best Performances of All Time (Ever!)

Almost all the buzz surrounding American Idol this week has centered on Fox’s decision to hit CTRL+ALT+DEL after Season 15 wraps next spring.

But why gaze so deep into the future when the granddaddy of reality singing competitions has a rich history that’s oh so fun to revisit?

To that end, I’ve spent half a day perusing YouTube — and engaging in painful internal debate — to compile a list of the show’s 35 Best Performances of All Time (Ever!). Who made the cut? Well, Kelly, Carrie, Fantasia, Kris, Adam and Melinda, of course, but also some less-lauded (but no less-talented) folks who never quite got the respect to which they were entitled.

Click through the gallery below for my full countdown – or click here for direct access — then hit the comments and tell me where I got it right, where I went awry and which standouts I inevitably snubbed.