After contestant Papa Peachez announced his unusual moniker, Keith spontaneously put a witty new twist on an old Madonna hit, singing the lyric “Papa don’t peach…” to the delight of his fellow judges.
“Randy, you wanna take a big sip and tell us what you think?” Urban asked his fellow judge, moments after returning Season 11 contestant Vincent Powell told a tale about how he’d been booted in Hollywood Week last year after getting distracted by Randy Jackson gulping from his Coke cup.
“There’ve been some budget cutbacks,” Keith chimed in, after Randy noted the absence of fellow judges Mariah Carey and Nicki Minaj. When Randy suggested the ladies had been “lost at sea,” Keith responded with a deadpan, “Is that metaphoric?”
Keith wasn’t directly responsible for this guffaw-worthy moment, but it nevertheless had the judges’ table in stitches: “Pretty tone! You’ve got a pretty tone. A lot of Faith in there,” he told Ann Difani, who’d just sung Faith Hill’s “Stronger.”
“You think? I hope you feel the passion!” she said excitedly.
“I believe he meant Hill,” clarified Mariah, at which point a lightbulb went off over Difani’s head: “Ohhh! Got it!”
“Sheer cuteness!” exclaimed Randy, after hunky Iraq war vet Matt Stone entered the audition room with his toddler daughter.
“Cuteness,” responded Keith with a gleam in his eye. “And how ’bout that girl?”
The judges were briefly taken aback when auditioner Stephanie Sanson delivered Adele’s “Set Fire to the Rain” in a death-metal scream, complete with expletives and obscene hand gestures. When she stormed out of the room without waiting for the judges’ comments, Keith remained totally unperturbed. “Okay, so we’ll start with Randy. What did you think?” he asked, before offering his own opinion: “It was a little reserved for me.”
Then, after Mariah and Randy gave their own goofy critiques, Keith wondered about their missing fourth panelist, who was absent due to American Music Awards rehearsals. “Nicki would’ve sent her to Hollywood!” he surmised.
When alarms began to sound on the Queen Mary (the ship housing the Long Beach, CA auditions) while a girl wearing a sailor’s cap performed, Keith quickly guessed what was wrong: “She’s not at the helm! We’ve run aground!”
“Why do I think that if we all said ‘No,’ she’d still be the same: ‘That’s fine! That’s fine!'” Keith observed after the judges had given a Golden Ticket to Rachel Hale, a human ray of sunshine that Randy said was perhaps the happiest contestant in the show’s 12-season history.
What do you think of Keith Urban as an Idol judge? Are you digging the rebooted judges’ panel after five episodes? Sound off in the comments!