American Idol 2012 – Billy Joel Week

It’s all Rock & Roll to me. Except Heejun.

Deandre Brackensick: So, guest mentor Tommy Hilfiger, then? Did this show suddenly turn into Project Runway when I wasn’t looking? Will next year’s run be an All Stars edition set-up specifically for Melinda Doolittle to win and thereby overturn a terrible injustice from many years ago? (It says here.) Anyway, I’m not entirely sure what the point of Tommy H was, other than to provide advice that was either ignored or ill-founded. Deandre fell into the latter category, I think, because his outfit certainly did him no favours. Neither did his tuition time with Fraggleface (who is beginning to sound more like Joey Tribbiani’s agent Estelle with each passing week), who just spent the whole thing going “CATHOLIC CATHOLIC CATHOLIC CATHOLIC!” at him. So it’s no great surprise that Deandre’s performance this week was a mediocre, muddled mess that was nowhere near enough to keep him out of the bottom three considering the performance order. SCORE: 5/10

(It was basically his one good performacen physically with all his worst ones vocally over-laid on top. And you know me, I’m all about The Voice. SCORE : 3/10)

Erika Von Pelt: HOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO NEW YOOOOOOOOOOOORK! Wait, it’s not *that* one? Sorry, my mistake. Anyway, Elise was singing ‘New York State Of Mind’ this week, and received very valuable advice from Diddy (amounting to “sing like you are from New York”, which Erika found rather problematic given that she resides all the way over there in Rhode Island. My grasp of US geography is a bit limited, but they’re pretty close together, right? It’s not like she was from Alaska or anything). Anyway, since no one had any constructive advice for Erika about the song, she decided to cut her hair, and ended up looking uncannily like Kat Slater. The performance was the sort of thing, that were Simon still here, he would doubtless have likened it to the sort of thing he would expect to hear in the sort of hotel bar that doesn’t really exist even though he pretends it does. Anyway, I liked her commitment to the transformative nature of the Idol experience, even if her performance was only so-so. SCORE: 6/10

(They should have had Hollie tell her that she AINT HER MUVVAH. SCORE : 5/10)

Joshua Ledet: And you thought Elise struggled with Whitney Houston Week. I can’t remember the last time I saw a contestant quite so uncomfortable with a theme on this show, not since Scotty McCreary in Islamic Chanting Week, which I may in fact have just made up. To be fair, he did have to run the gauntlet of Tommy Hilfiger at his most creepy, standing there smacking his lips about wanting to see Joshua in a tuxedo, and how he appreciated that Joshua liked his clothes…tight. That would be enough to put anyone of this whole show for life, let alone Billy Joel Week. So anyway, yes, Joshua Ledet sang “She’s Got A Way” (LOL, more like “She’s Got A Penis”, AM I RITE?) and looked profoundly uncomfortable whilst doing so, and sounded like shit. Some weeks just don’t suit some people, and other Len Goodmanisms therein. Well done on the show for yelling “BUT YOU WERE SO GOOD LAST WEEK!” over and over again so that he didn’t get voted out. I was almost worried there. SCORE : 3/10

(He clawed it back a bit near the end, but dear Lord, that opening was dreadful. SCORE: 5/10)

Skylar Laine: Skylar remains the most flat-out adorable contestant this show has had in some time – she just seems so genuinely thrilled to be here and determined to make the absolute most of the experience. Clearly, meeting Diddy was something of a highlight for her – I haven’t heard an Idol contestant squeal that loudly since Danny Gokey’s infamous rendition of ‘Dream On’. This week was something of a turning point for Skylar – Jimmy and Diddy both advised her to dial the vocals back a bit, generally, which was both something she needed to hear and also something that threatened to completely rob her of everything that makes her special, but luckily Skylar managed to find an acceptable middle ground where she still got to belt angrily like her life depended on it but also got to show us her softer side as well. It did expose the limits of her lower register, but I can’t say I didn’t still enjoy her performance all the same. SCORE: 7/10

(I liked it when she started shouting, what can I say? SCORE : 8/10)

Elise Testosterone: IT MEANS NOTHING TO MEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE, OHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH VIENNNNNNNNNNNNNNAAAAAAAAAAA…wait, it’s not that one *either*? I feel like the show is just trolling me at this point. Her meeting with Tommy Hilfiger went on a bizarre tangent about just how much she’s always wanted a pair of bellbottom trousers and how she would totally wear them for the show on Wednesday and then she…didn’t. Luckily such arbitrary matters of costume were unimportant, because it finally all came together for Elise this week and she delivered the performance that showed us all what she’s really capable. Both energetic and carefully controlled, there might have been a few iffy notes, but she really made me sit up and take notice this week – and the voting public of America felt the same way, it seems. SCORE: 8/10

(Best performance of the series so far, I’m saying it. SCORE : 9/10)

Phillip Phillips: It wasn’t entirely unexpected that the meeting of professional prep Tommy Hilfiger and general grub Phillip Phillips was slightly awkward, as Phil2 expressed his desire to wear several shades of grey on stage and Tommy screamed “NO! GREY MAKES YOU DISAPPEAR ON STAGE! NO WIRE HANGERS! EVER!” and then Phil2 was basically all “lol, fuck that, I’ll wear what I want” and basically turned up on stage wearing every shade of grey he owned and…looking quite nice, actually. Performance-wise, his take on ‘Moving Out’ was pretty predictable, although he’s fallen back a step or two in terms of his enunciation. He got a bit overly-dramatic towards the end, but once we’d seen Heejun’s performance, this felt positively restrained. SCORE: 7/10

(I don’t think the song did him any favours, which is a shame, because performance wise he was on peak form. SCORE : 6/10)

Hollie Cavanagh: Well it seemed like they were setting her up for a nice run as a potential winner there but then…this week happened. Where they pointed out that she dressed like an old lady, then compensated for this by…making her dress like Faye Dunaway in Supergirl. And you may scoff, but it was petty styling issues like this that dogged and ultimately took down both Carly Smithson and Allison Iraheta, so don’t think they won’t come for Hollie. It didn’t help either that she produced arguably the biggest trainwreck performance of the night, potentially second only to Heejun, and at least he has the excuse that he was blatantly doing it on purpose. Lord only knows what happened to her usually assured vocals and stage presence but…this was not good. At all. SCORE : 2/10

(Katharine McPhee was plagued by styling issues as well. SCORE: 3/10)

Heejun Han: I think this is the week where Heejun disappeared so far down the rabbit hole that I just decided that everything he did was insincere, and that started coming out the other side and wondering if some of it might actually have been real. I know. I need help. Anyway, Heejun this week became another one of the All Of The Boys who ignored Tommy Hilfiger’s fashion tips, but took it to the next level, by deliberately dressing in a hideous fashion, sprinting around the stage pulling silly faces, gasping out of breath, then randomly and deliberately talking about all the disabled children he loves and helps in as crass and trollish a fashion as possible. I think the only way it could have been better/worse is if he hadn’t gone for a song-choice as on the nose as “My Life” and just randomly done “We Didn’t Start The Fire” or something. SCORE : 3/10

(I still prefer my trainwrecks more of the Haley Johnson variety, thanks. SCORE: 2/10)

Jessica Sanchez: Just as all the boys ignored Tommy Hilfiger’s advice, it was rather tragic to watch all of the girls cling to it like a new and sudden Article Of Faith. Still, at least Jessica decided to ignore somebody’s advice on the night, staring P Diddy and his nonsense of “stop over-singing everything” right in the eye and proceding to over-sing the one line of “Everybody Has A Dream” over and over and over and over again. It kind of worked as an anthem for the sort of American Idol singer that Jessica Sanchez is (ie the ones who talk about their dreams over and over and over and over again). When watching I wasn’t sure it would be exactly what Billy Joel had in mind when he wrote the song, but then again he did send her that note on the Results Show saying, in effect, “yeah, it was alright, I guess”. SCORE : 8/10

(After last week’s breakthrough, I’m back to being bored by her again. Sorry. SCORE: 6/10)

Colton Dixon: Of all the words that someone should never use to self-describe, “edgy” has to be right up there. Who calls themselves “edgy”? Especially whilst existing as a contestant on American Idol, the least edgy programme in the world? Well, Colton Dixon does apparently. But then Colton Dixon also has that hair, so clearly isn’t too worried about the judgement of others. Well apart from Tommy Hilfiger whose fashion dictats made him do a super-triple reverse titty-twister CHANGE OF MIND, and keep his image exactly the same when he’d been on the verge of changing it. Speaking of not changing things up, his version of Piano Man was pretty much exactly as you’d expect, except a bit more whiny and a bit more tender at the end. Good job Colton. Now…about that haircut… SCORE : 8/10

(He really needs to stop whining at the beginning of phrases. It really is super-offputting. SCORE: 7/10)


4 thoughts on “American Idol 2012 – Billy Joel Week

  1. Ferny

    I thought Colton was definitely the best of the night, but someone should really tell him that American Idol is not that much of a cool show to be on.

    Heejun….hmm. Well his act would totally work better if the cowboy was also on the show, but as it is he seems to drift from real-life troll to someone who actually seems quite nice but odd. Either way, I think he’ll be going soon.

    I actually think Deandre might be my favourite now – he just has to keep bopping around and flinging that awesome hair around to remain my favourite, but I’m pretty sure he’ll be gone in 2 weeks 😦

    The only person I can actually see winning this is Skylar, which would be fine with me.

    1. monkseal Post author

      Skylar is the one where I have absolutely no idea where she stands amongst the contenders. She might be right at the top, or just clinging on and avoiding the Bottom Three Crew. I do think she’s going to benefit from the sudden downswing of Hollie.

  2. Tim

    Skylar is good, but I can’t see the producers allowing – I mean, the public voting for – a country singer to win for the second year in a row. Especially not when we have our standard WGWG as an alternative. (Mind you, I don’t think Phil-squared will win either.)

    Heejun definitely jumped the Sanjaya for me this week. Now that he knows he’s going on the tour, I guess every week he survives is just a bonus for him. It says everything that his fan club managed to muster enough votes to save him over the perfectly decent Erika, a good, solid singer with absolutely no fan club whatsoever. I look forward to his inevitable cover of a Jedward song …

    1. monkseal Post author

      I guess the thing with Sanjaya is that he was always earnest, as the show pushed him towards being a joke. Heejun’s the exact opposite (although I’d guess the show isn’t, in reality, really pushing him all that hard to take it seriously).


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