American Idol 2012 – 2000s/Soul Train Week

ZOMG SHOCK BOOT!

Hollie Cavanagh: I love that the week where Hollie stunk the stage up and delivered a poor performance she’s not in the Bottom Three due to the judges being ZOMGMEAN. Then when they give her a perfect comeback arc, complete with her performing well-chosen songs pretty well (her inherent albinism meant she was never going to nail soul music, so might as well give her Dusty at her most mainstream and let her bland it up some), getting the sort of praise that doesn’t put people off but also lets the audience know you’ve done well, dressed…comparatively non-awfully for Hollie, heck even having the might of Liverpool FC throw its weight behind her and what does she get? Bottom Three. Sometimes I think the American Public don’t know how to write the storylines that present themselves to them. Anyway that Adele song was good, as I’m reminded every time I hear somebody else other than Adele perform it. SCORES : Rolling In The Deep 8/10 ; Son Of A Preacher Man 5/10

(She can have all the redemption arcs she likes; she still sings everything like an old lady, bless her. SCORES: Rolling In The Deep 7/10; Son Of A Preacher Man 6/10)

Colton Dixon: ZOMG SHOCK BOOT! And an actual shock boot, not like when Pia Toscano bored off. I haven’t been this taken aback by an elimination vote since That Nice Michael Johns in Series 6 or Laura Shite from X Factor 5. And unlike those joyous events, the only real joy I’m getting out of this is that shocks can still happen, and white guys can still be eliminated outside the Top 6. Because I rather liked Colton, even in the moment of sinking to his knees and screaming praise to Jesus. I guess America looked at his attempts at creative rearrangements this week and decided they were more Kristy Lee Cook than David Cook. To be fair, America wasn’t ENTIRELY wrong. I loved the idea of a metal version of Bad Romance, and his voice was doing all the right things, but that was a complete sloppy mess of an arrangement, and he felt lost at points. September on the other hand was a complete mess, flat as a pancake, and entirely inappropriate for him, and it’s getting points mostly for the bravery of the attempt and the GIANT FUCKING TREE in the background. Would that I could give him more bonus points for those trousers in Bad Romance, and hauling out his sister (again) but I only have so many to give. SCORES : Bad Romance 6/10 ; September 4/10

(I loved his Gaga performance; it was one of those Idol moments like Siobhan Magnus doing ‘Paint It Black’ where it just completely transcends music and becomes a ridiculous, brilliant spectacle. Regrettably; I have no such defence for the Earth, Wind & Fire number. SCORES: Bad Romance 9/10; September 5/10)

Elise Testone: So, we’re officially giving up on the idea of Elise getting some sort of Haley Reinhart-style redemption arc, then? Because they’ve basically painted “ELISE” on one of the three stools of doom at this point. Still, miraculously, she somehow got more votes than Colton this week and lives to fight (the judges, the audience, the universe in general) another day. Some very peculiar things happened with Elise this week, and I’m not entirely sure who was to blame for them. First up during ‘No One’, there was the outfit and the wind machine that made it clearly someone either in the wardrobe department or on the design team thinks she’s Mariah Carey (spoiler: she’s not), then there was the frankly comical staging of ‘Let’s Get It On’ that opened the performance with Elise leaning over the back of a sofa seductively shooting come-to-bed eyes right into the camera. At the centre of both of these performances was Elise herself, not really looking at all comfortable this week. Fingers crossed she can at least claw back some of that Zeppelin magic next week for Queen week, as it’s probably going to be her last week on the show. She got bonus points with me for chucking the metal scream in to her second performance, just because she could. SCORES: No One 7/10; Let’s Get It On 7/10

(WHY THE FUCK WAS SHE STYLED AS MARIAH CAREY, IT WAS SO FUCKING AWFUL. SCORES : No One 6/10 ; Let’s Get It On 7/10)

Phillip Phillips:So with Colton Dixon out of the way, who is there to stop Phillip Phillips from his ascent to the Idol crown? To be fair, he pulled himself a little out of the slightly bland mire he’s found himself in this week with his first performance, and he only had to reach into the tired ol’ Kris Allen grab-bag of “do an “urban” song and make it legitimate by doing it acoustic style” tricks. In his case he chose Usher rather than Kanye West, but really it was all much of a muchness. J-Lo was right though, it was sexy. Well it would have been if he got that mange round his neck sorted. Of course then he ruined it all by bellowing his way through a pretty heinous version of “In The Midnight Hour” and making it utterly rapey. Still, it was enough for Randy Jackson to declare him the only true artist in the history of American Idol, or whatever moronic overpraise they chose to serve up for him this week. Remember when it didn’t seem like it could get worse than that week they all pretended he could totally have been in Fleetwood Mac? What innocent days those were. SCORES : U Got It Bad 7/10 ; In The Midnight Hour 3/10

(I’ve just completely run out of opinions to have about Phillip, which is worrying considering he’s going to win this thing. Also, I don’t know what “the midnight ow” is, but it sounds painful. SCORES: U Got It Bad 6/10; In The Midnight Hour 4/10)

Jessica Sanchez: Remember in the early cycles of America’s Next Top Model when Tyra would “forget” to call a contestant forward at judging for appraisal, and then she’d get booted for not being memorable? Well, this is like that, except I’m not being fake and awful about it like Tyra always was; I genuinely forgot Jessica Sanchez existed until I looked at my notes. Obviously the show doesn’t want us to forget her, given the ninety squillion times it mentioned OH BY THE WAY WE HAD TO SAVE HER FROM ELIMINATION LAST WEEK. The shot of a tearful Jessica sat on the sofa watching a replay of her own elimination was tragic and hilarious. Anyway, Jimmy Fraggleface suggested that the problem has been her inability to Feel The Music. He should’ve just sent her to drink the water at Duff Gardens, I’m sure that would’ve sorted it out. What all this advice left us with was a functional rendition of ‘Fallin” that told us nothing about her we didn’t already know, and after which she simpered that she totally thought J-Lo was confiscating her microphone during the sing-save last week because they hated her so much they weren’t even going to consider saving her. GURL, PLEASE. You’d think it couldn’t get worse from there, but then she gave us a frankly baffling second performance, the point of which I’m still trying to ascertain. Was she supposed to be looking tough? Gangsta? Fierce? I have no idea what it was trying to say about her personality, but it made her singing hella rough. SCORES: Fallin’ 7/10; Try A Little Tenderness 4/10

(Try A Little Tenderness was STANK and I loved it and Jimmy Fraggle-Face picking it out as being “too old for her” is some bs given the rest of the soul song-choices. SCORES : Fallin’ : 6/10, Try A Little Tenderness : 8/10)

Skylar Laine: A guide to music criticism with Skylar Laine: ‘[Lady Gaga] wrote a really good song here.’ THANKS SKYLAR! To be fair, the most noteworthy thing about both of Skylar’s performances this week was nothing to do with her, but the creepyhot fiddle player who followed her around as though she was just one of the many children of the village he was bewitching with his tunes before leading them all off to be baked in a pie, or something. Doing ‘Born This Way’ in a country style was an interesting idea, and for the most part it worked – obviously the “gay straight or bi/lesbian, transgender life” bit had to be excised, because she didn’t want to completely destroy her conservative fanbase in one fell swoop (HI COLTON!) but apparently it was left in the iTunes version and I like to think there was a fairly heavy stage wink behind the performance at the very least. The country take on ‘I Heard It Through The Grapevine’ was less successful, but once again managed to coast through on sheer force of presence, charm and personality. Say what you like about Skylar, but she’s got an uncanny way of selling a shaky performance that would probably sink a lot of other contestants. SCORES: Born This Way 8/10; I Heard It Through The Grapevine 6/10

(I thought she was legit bad this week, by her standards and the standard of the competition as a whole at this stage. She’s succesfully ridden the edge between ebulliance and shouting for me thus far, but this was bad. Both of them. SCORES : Born This Way : 5/10 I Heard It Through The Grapevine : 3/10

Joshua Ledet:Of all the baffling song-choices this week, Joshua’s first has to be the most wantonly bizarre. Who on this Earth chooses to sing an American Idol Winners Song out of choice? Even one of the earlier, better(/funnier) ones. I know he loves Fantasia more than it healthy for a man to, but couldn’t he have done Shummertahm as a more appropriate song, rather than one about finding a sparkly rainbow at the end of illiterate single motherhood. Joshua is many things, but an illiterate single mother he is not. Once that was done he also decided to push out “A Change Is Gonna Come” far, far too hard and histrionic to the point that I was almost begging for another ill-advised white-person cover-version of it. Not really a good week for Joshua as far as I’m concerned, and with this and the elimination of Colton, I’m sadly back in my usual position of liking all the remaining women more than all of the remaining men, with the possible exception of Hollie. Oh well, I still kind of love everyone a bit. SCORES : I Believe 4/10 ; A Change Is Gonna Come : 5/10

(I found something faintly epic about his Mantasia performance until the wheels came off in the last third. His second outing was a bit of a mess all round, sadly. SCORES: I Believe 7/10; A Change Is Gonna Come 5/10

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4 thoughts on “American Idol 2012 – 2000s/Soul Train Week

  1. Ferny

    I really was shocked about Colton too, I had him pegged for the final and possibly the win. So the final two will be Philip and Skylar y/n?

    I’m not sure why Hollie isn’t gone though, and Elise being pissy is not going to help her stay.

    I wish they’d saved their ‘save’ for this week tbh, although Jessica was bottom of the votes on the only week I think she genuinely connected with the song so (as you said) this is why I’m not American 🙂

    Reply
    1. monkseal Post author

      It looks that way re: the final. Elise and Hollie are dead women walking and Jessica is probably tainted by The Save. I have no idea where Joshua stands with the US Public, but wherever it is, it’s not Final 2 I wouldn’t say. Judging from the last few weeks performance position matters a hell of a lot.

      Reply
  2. min

    Now that Colton has gone, isn’t Philip the only person left never to have been called bottom 3?

    Not sure that LFC helped Holly – it just continued knocking in the ‘not really American’ nail they started last week – and that got lost when the Judges messed up with the critique.

    Reply

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