Sunday, March 23, 2008

American Idol Recap: Top 11 Edition

Theme: Lennon-McCartney Songbook...again (I know, overkill)

Since this is so late that next week's show is only a couple of days away, I'll wrap it up quickly.

This week turned out exactly the way I thought Week One of the Lennon-McCartney songbook would: mediocre. Nearly every single performance reeked of it. People who were so good last week floundered trying to find another Beatles song to top what they've done before. Amanda Overmyer was certainly spirited during "Back in the U.S.S.R." but it was exactly what you would expect from her, and she doesn't seem intent on evolving over the course of the show. Brooke White chose something called "Here Comes the Sun" and was predictably cheerful and cutesy. I love this woman, but that entire performance was dreadful with the yellow dress and those awful lyrics (yes people, even The Beatles had their bad songs every once in awhile- so you can suck it if you think they were perfect or something). David Cook attempted to work on his rock edge with "Daytripper" and, for the most part, it worked. It just wasn't special enough to merit any above average praise, especially after that "Eleanor Rigby" performance. And Carly Smithson, who had the best performance of the entire year so far last week with "Come Together," tried something softer and it wasn't all there. Her voice was flawless, but the song was kinda boring and didn't really go anywhere.

The ones at the bottom of the suckey pile were there yet again this week. Kristy Lee Cook yet again countrified another Beatles song and- surprise!- yet again it sucked. I still don't know what America sees in this chick because she has about as much as talent as Sanjaya, but is about as funny as a royal dinner with the Queen. Can you honestly imagine her with a ponyhawk and not believe she's trying too hard to have personality? Ramiele Malubay made "I Should've Known Better" a piece of karaoke trash and was so cutesy I wanted to barf. Jason Castro warbled through "Michelle" and inspired nothing in me (I literally wrote down "Awful, nothing really of note to say about it"). Chikezie, still in crazy schizophrenic mode, started "I've Just Seen a Face" off of beautifully...until he turned it into another hoe-down. What the fuck is his problem? This was awful last week, and it's still awful this week. Any respect I once had for this man has entirely evaporated. Dreamy Michael Johns went from brilliant to embarrassing and back again throughout the course of "A Day in the Life." It was during this performance that I've realized that he has yet to deliver a performance of any particular worth and the only reason I want him around is to admire his accent. Not really a good sign, Michael.

Praise God Archuleta was back again this week! After last week's disaster (which they insisted on mentioning every two seconds) Archuleta proved his worth with a safe, yet beautiful, rendition of "The Long and Winding Road." I hope next week he picks an up-tempo song to silence all the haters who thinks he can only do ballads. Um, hello, did you not see his Top 24 performance of "Shop Around"? That was more than amazing.

Syesha Mercado also had something to prove (she hasn't really been progressing much) and she did just that with "Yesterday." I'm glad someone had the balls to tackle this song and I give her bonus points for it. I wasn't in love with it as much as the judges were (as soon as she started singing, I knew this was one they were going to eat up) but it was still a beautiful rendition.

Let me just add a quick note about the results. I realize that Amanda isn't exactly everyone's cup of tea. She's loud, obnoxious, her voice was better suited for a small biker bar in upstate New York and she wasn't going anywhere near the finale, but she was definitely 100 times better than Kristy Lee Cook. Amanda was so wildly inconsistent that she was interesting and always worth a watch; Kristy Lee is just consistently bad. What is it about this woman that has America saving her from leaving every damn week? She must be a witch and has cast a spell over the country, because there's no way people actually thinks she has talent. And why the fuck isn't Ramiele getting anywhere near the Bottom 3 yet? She's horrible every week but no one besides myself seems to notice. Ugh, sometimes I just hate this country.

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