American Idol 2012 – Songs From The 2010s

There really is never going to be a non-awkward-sounding way to refer to this decade, is there?

Skylar Laine: This doesn’t specifically have anything to do with Skylar, but I’m intrigued that they’re doing “let’s meet the hometown crowd” this early on. I know the Top 3 always get to actually go home, but considering we’re at Top 7 already, that’s not actually that far away. And those hashtags? Are they all the obnoxious names we’re supposed to refer to people’s fanbases by? Because good Lord. I mean, “Skoutlaws”? That’s just silly. Anyway, in terms of actual things that relate to Skylar, this week she made a breakout for the title by going on stage as a WHITE GIRL WITH GUITAR! Of course, Jimmy Fraggleface told her not to be so silly, because no one cares if girls can play instruments because they’re girls, it’s only when boys do it that it’s relevant because it makes them talented and artistry and sensitive and *PANTIES MELT* and whatever else. Skylar, however, was not to be deterred by this and took to the stage to sing a song that I had never heard before, but that turned out to be a Kellie Pickler original, which explained the general…simplicity of the emotions behind it. I mean, it was always going to be Pickler or Taylor Swift, wasn’t it? So it wasn’t a particular stretch for Skylar this week, and as a result I wasn’t as enthused by the performance as I would’ve hoped, but it was something clearly in her wheelhouse and that she performed highly competently, so I don’t really have any actual criticisms either. She didn’t sound so great on her duet with Colton, but my general level of love for the actual song (‘Don’t You Wanna Stay’ by Kelly Clarkson and Jason Aldean) kind of made me overlook it. SCORE: 7/10

(Oh Steve. Panties *poof* as you well know. And Skylars Huff. Like George Huff. That’s a thing apparently. That they did to her. SCORE : 7/10)

Colton Dixon: I love that he’s from Murfreesboro. Well, not so much that, as the fact that a place called “Murfreesboro”. It sounds like someone asking for more cheesburger in the middle of cunnilingus. For whatever reason you’d be asking for that. Anyway, Colton at this point finds himself suddenly on a rocket straight to the Final Two, if not the crown. Jimmy Iovine yelling “IT’S YOU VS PHILLIP, LET’S FACE IT, SO WHAT CAN WE DO TO GET YOU TO WIN?” was the show being entirely honest, for once, and that “romance” with Skylar was even more of an ass-pull than Scotty’s with Lauren. At least those two batted for the same team. Music genre wise, I mean. What a shame that Colton got pushed to the fore on a week where he sang with less emotional connection to his material than EFFING RIHANNA can muster. At Liberace’s piano. Still, the implied homoerotic content of letting Phillip stroke his hair and going “oh snap!” to some poor girl trying to get him to go to prom with her (SPOILERS : not happening, girl, get a grip) is enough for some goodwill. SCORE : 5/10

(My panties went poof. Sorry. 😦 SCORE: 9/10)

Jessica Sanchez: OH MY GOD, YOU PIA’D JESSICA. DAMN YOU AMERICA! Of course, my connection with the raw psyche at the heart of America being what it is, I thought she gave her best performance yet, actually showing some sort of emotional connection to the material, instead of just slamming that mic around like a malfunctioning joystick and doing Flute Fingers. But it just shows what I know. I guess having an entire VT of just standing there sneering at Hollie & Joshua’s adorable transatlantic friendship can’t have helped. Or…that performance of “Stronger” which we won’t talk about. Thank goodness though, that this show still has a firm grasp on how to recover its divas popularity and make them seem humble and likable to the voting public. By having Randy yell at America for daring to vote for anybody else, and then having J-Lo BUM-RUSH the stage 5 seconds into Jessica’s “Sing For Your Life” performance to tell her to STOP SINGING, BECAUSE IT’S OBVIOUS, D’UH. (Cynics would suggest J-Lo also did it so quickly because Jessica was singing like refried ass). Not that Steven hadn’t already spoiled the whole pageant with his little “Well, Hollie’s not in the Bottom Three, so we’re using the Save regardless” speech about 15 minutes before. So it is that BB Chez from Chula Vista (I think that’s from Star Wars isn’t it?) lives to fight another day. Probably literally. SCORE : 9/10

(I agree, I actually thought she was quite good this week. Clearly this is why I’m not an American. SCORE: 9/10)

Joshua Ledet: Okay, seriously: “jjewels”? At this point it’s looking less like an actual fan nickname and more like what happens when you switch the autocorrect off on your mobile phone. Joshua’s hometown visit seemed a little more subdued than most of the others (not that anyone was ever going to be able to top Hollie’s stories of the lady who makes anal sex lollies for her, but I’ll leave Chris to explain that to you) – maybe he’s just from a particularly small town, but it didn’t really leave me feeling particularly enlightened about him or his fans. Oh well, never mind. His decision to do ‘Runaway Baby’ by Bruno Mars (I could’ve sworn this song was by Cee-Lo Green; clearly it’s been too long since I actually paid attention to the Top 40) was something of a mixed blessing – I think I enjoy uptempo Joshua more than Takin’ It To Church Joshua, but this song really did nothing for him and he sounded pretty strained trying to keep up with it. Again, it wasn’t a bad performance per se, just not once I could develop any great enthusiasm for. As for his triet(?) performance with Hollie and Jessica…it was a thing that happened. Let’s leave it at that. SCORE: 5/10

(I thought he showed Jessica and Hollie how to do up-tempo, whilst still majoring in balladry. Definitely a step up from the water he’s been treading recently. So OBV. he’s in the Bottom Three. SCORE : 8/10)

Hollie Cavanagh: So, as Steven mentioned, Hollie talked about “the fudge factory” and then made a …hand gesture. I laughed, I’m not proud. It almost made ME want to be a Holliepop, then I reconsidered, because I really don’t think I could do a Viewing Party with her family, without grabbing them all and shaking them and asking them why they aren’t forcing the show’s producers to Stop. Dressing. Her. Like. That. Can’t they see it’s DESTROYING HER? This week it even seemed to infect her performance, as she did the whole song in some sort of weird Old Lady Voice, like “Perfect” was not in fact being sung by P!nk, but Mrs Potts from Beauty And The Beast. Fortunately for Hollie, the judges decided to overdo it and shout “AWKWARD!” and just generally be passive aggressively rude to her, RILING UP HER FANBASE and dooming her arch-rival Jessica. WHAT WILL HAPPEN NEXT? Them and Elise sitting around twiddling their thumbs and waiting for the axe probably. SCORE : 6/10

(I love that singing an overwrought ballady P!nk song in her usual big diva voice was what she considered to be “starting afresh”. Oh Hollie. SCORE: 5/10

Phillip Phillips: “Philatics”? What is that, an exercise class? Anyway, I feel like we saw quite a lot of Phillip’s hometown during the auditions, so his VT was fun but not especially enlightening. He worked in a pawn shop! (Chris feels the need to clarify for me here that it’s pawn p-a-w-n, and not p-o-r-n. As if this is a mistake I would make. I worry what he thinks of me sometimes.) Phillip seemed a little put-out that Fraggleface and Akon (Akon was there, right? I didn’t hallucinate that or anything? Because I can barely remember anything he said) weren’t keen on him being WHITE GUY WITH GUITAR all the way through and felt the need to have some dude playing a piano come in after eight bars or whatever, but they probably had a point because this was a boring performance as it was – had it been stripped down any further I think I might have actually fallen asleep. The best thing about the performance by far was the scary goth lady saxophone player. I would totally have voted for her. Getting landed with ‘Somebody That I Used To Know’ for the duet was unfortunate for him, but he pretty much openly admitted that Elise wanted to do it and he didn’t protest, so my level of sympathy for him in this is fairly limited. SCORE: 5/10

(At least he didn’t look like he was going to pass out mid-performance this week. SCORE : 4/10)

Elise Testone: Elise. We need to talk. I mean, I really like you. Your performance of ‘Whole Lotta Love’ could not be contained within the word “epic”. You’re easily in my top three contestants for the whole season. But something is going very wrong for you. Last week’s performance was a complete arrhythmic trainwreck, and this week’s, while a step in the right direction, was not much of an improvement. It was probably unwise from the outset for someone who’s clearly angling for the Haley Reinhart Memorial Comeback/Second Wind/Redemption Edit to attempt ‘Yoü and I’ by Lady Gaga, a song that Haley herself performed last year and did quite well with, but it was also unwise to look so half-assed about it. And to turn up dressed like Ursula the Sea Witch. And to refer to the guy in your VT as “my one friend”. And to suggest you start out by playing drums because desperation is clearly setting in. I know you can’t be glamrockmazing every week, but you need to do better than this. SCORE: 6/10

(Never have I seen someone throw everything including the kitchen sink at a performance with quite such little enthusiasm. SCORE : 4/10)

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8 thoughts on “American Idol 2012 – Songs From The 2010s

  1. Tim

    This all seemed very familiar, didn’t it? From the “expect the unexpected” prompt pre-titles to Ryan’s thinking aloud what was going on, to the splitting of the first 6 contestants into 2 distinctly separate groups and then asking the seventh to choose the safe group – it was George Huff all over again, wasn’t it? If memory serves, this is EXACTLY what happened in top 7 week in season 3, where we had the shock of the three divas – Fantasia, LaToya, Jennifer Hudson – being the bottom three, and the eliminated contestant (no wussy judges’ save back then, of course) was … J-Hud. Nice to see her back on the show again, by the way – although she has lost another two dress sizes since we last saw her. Next time she’ll be invisible.

    I remember that week well, as it happens. I was in LA and saw her perform live post-elimination at Hollywood & Highland with that week’s guest mentor Barry Manilow. I’m still traumatised by Bazza Man-o-Plastic’s live performance of Copacabana to this day.

    As for the actual singing thing they do this week: Skylar – meh. Colton – nice try, no cigar. Jessica – fantastic. Joshua – good, but still not living up to the judges’ billing. Hollie – killed one of my favourite Pink songs, die, DIE! Phillip Squared – regressing. Elise – good, but not quite as good as Haley Reinhart’s version last year when no one had ever heard You and I before. Jessica at the end when she was supposedly singing for her life sounded awfully half-hearted, as if the whole thing had been scripted and Steven Tyler had just screamed at her “Don’t worry! We’ll SAVE YOU!” a couple of minutes before. Whadaya mean, he DID?!?

    Reply
    1. alisonbroadley

      Still a very open competition. as nobody is right out in front. Skylar – love her, love her, she’s my winner. Colton – blows hot and cold, my other finalist though. Jessica – cute, but don’t get the love. Joshua – great, but not a_maz_ing. Phillip – why did he audition if he hates it all? He’s no David Cook. Hollie – she could be a_maz_ing, but needs the most help from the mentors to become a star. I feel she’s going to lose out because she may be listening to the wrong peeps (her family maybe?). She never feels like she’s the finished item – and dressing her like her granny is not helping. Elise – shouldn’t be allowed to dress herself, but I do lover her voice.

      Such a mixed bunch this year.

      Reply
      1. Tim

        I like the diversity of this year’s finalists, for sure. I have to admit I’m not a huge Skylar fan – great personality, a real performer, but I dislike the way she always has to power through everything. Also, I can’t see there being a country winner two years running.

        Agree with you about Hollie. After a great first two weeks, she’s gone backwards. She has all the technical ability of Jessica, but she’s so raw and has had such a battering from the judges that you can see her confidence has taken a knock. She looks like she’s trapped in that cycle of being criticised one week, over-reaching the next and then getting criticised again.

        I love Elise’s voice. But she’s got a snowball’s chance in hell, really, hasn’t she?

    2. monkseal Post author

      My favourite part of the The Huff is how the contestants try to find new ways every time to make “I’M NOT DOING!” it look fresh and original and genuine.

      Reply
  2. Ferny

    I seriously still can’t tell Philips performances/songs apart…but he’s good looking soo…..he’ll probably be in the final with Skylar and Colton at this rate. I’m with you though that I actually like everyone left so I don’t particularly mind who wins, although it does look like Colton is walking it to the crown. Trying to paint Colton as an underdog on this show is quite laughable though.

    Where did it all go wrong with Hollie? I like her and she started off fairly well, but it’s just …not great now. And basically going ‘Bye Hollie’ and having a wake for her whilst she’s standing on stage after her song is just rude.

    Reply
    1. monkseal Post author

      I’m guessing Jessica has never polled AMAZINGLY and they decided to chop Hollie up for fuel to keep Jessica going a bit earlier than they expected they’d have to. Girl is NOT getting good styling/song-choice advice.

      Reply
    1. monkseal Post author

      I’ve no idea why he keeps hovering around as well. I hope in the nigh-on inevitable Phillip vs Colton final he’s hauled up and it’s pointed out that they both very pointedly ignored him.

      Reply

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