Tonight’s ‘American Idol‘ was another one of my favorite types of elimination episodes — the ones where action takes place throughout the show, thanks to the high quotient of contestants who need to be eliminated. Lots of killer(s of dreams and hopes), and not too much filler! So let’s get to the action, shall we?
Who’s Out: John Park, Jermaine Sellers, Michelle Delamor, and Haeley Vaughn were all sent packing during the hour, a set of eliminations that led some people to wonder what sort of messages about American race relations the country’s premier talent show was sending out, especially after last week’s quick dispatching of Joe Muñoz and Ashley Rodriguez.
To be at least a smidge fair to America, Haeley and Michelle turned in dismal performances during last night’s proceedings — having to hear Michelle’s interpretation of Creed one more time was almost as painful as watching Haeley’s teenage dreams dissipate in a pile of sparkle and tears (from Katie Stevens, whose crying got almost as much time as the weeping of Ashley Ferl). And while I liked John more than most of the guys on Tuesday I can kind of see why both him and Jermaine were sent packing. (If only one of the judges had gotten behind his subtlety! Hmph.)
Who’s (Inexplicably) In: I’ll probably be muttering about John Park’s early exit for the next few weeks, and directing my ire at various contestants who were clearly worse than he was on Tuesday. So for tonight: Aaron “Extra Gel” Kelly? Really? That kid is so awkward, he made the early days of David Archuleta seem like the quintessential depiction of a well-adjusted teenager.
Who’s Making Me Sad: Everyone who isn’t Alex Lambert, really. The group number tonight was a horror, thanks to it being a clear lip-sync (ugh) through the Black Eyed Peas’ still-unkillable “I Gotta Feeling” (uggggghhghghgh). But Alex seemed sort of bemused by the whole thing — he grinned shyly during the three-way high-fiving, the miming that was clearly designed to preserve the song’s aesthetic decision to overuse Autotune, and the super-awkward dancing. You could almost say that he made the group number his own!
Who’s Going To Be Super-Entertaining On Tomorrow’s Eliminated-Contestants Conference Call: Jermaine, of course; “In God there is no failure,” he said during the extended monologue that ensued upon his hearing that he was being sent home. Well, on the bright side, now he has time to pitch that talk show where he takes his antagonists to church!
Karannoyance Quotient: There wasn’t too much Kara tonight, really. I wonder if I’m going to have to retire this category for elimination episodes? Although I guess in two weeks we’ll have fewer people getting the boot on these shows, which will result in much more need for filler, which could result in Kara being encouraged to strike up the leering again.
Hey, Let’s End On A High Note: In honor of the return of the return of last year’s, ahem, polarizing third-place finisher Danny Gokey, let’s revisit the highest note American Idol has had to offer in recent years. It’s even more ear-splitting than Adam Lambert and Siobhan Magnus’ B-flat five screeches…
That sure does leave a mark! And it shows how the title of his new single “My Best Days Are Ahead Of Me” is 1000000% true.
Next Week: The last three-episode week of the season! Sixteen singers, sixteen songs, and sixteen attempts to infuse this season with some drama before the seemingly inevitable Crystal-Lilly-Siobhan-Casey Final Four!