American Idol 2008 Top 5

Wow.

This was the first episode in which they did two songs each, which is cool in that you get to see more of what the contestants can do.  However, they changed up the judging in a way I don’t recall seeing before.  All five sang, then the judges had a quick shot at commenting on the first performances, with a more extensive chance given to comment on second or both after each second performance.

In a classic for the ages, Paula Abdul referred to her notes - have we ever seen them making notes during an on-air performance? - and muttered about how hard it was, then went on to critique Jason, who’d gone first, on both his first and his not-yet-aired second song.  Oops.  You could see Ryan Seacrest looking off to the side for producer guidance, and then others jumping in for the save.

Oddly enough, I don’t think it’s as much of a scandal as some might.  We already know that the judges generally hear the performances from rehearsal, even if they aren’t in the audience at the time.  We already know that the judges can’t always hear the live performances as well as they might, so the rehearsal review is a tool to help them know what to expect, given the chances there won’t be much difference.  We’ve seen instances where a judge was clearly talking about a different performance than what we saw live, because there was a difference, but if they pay enough attention it can generally work.

Now, Paula is getting paid waaaay too much to get so confused, pain meds or not, but I don’t think her comments were scripted, as some might assume.  It’s most likely notes taken from rehearsals and confusion due to the change of procedure.

It was still classic.  And she still gets paid too much for that level of spectacle.  If it was scripted, it was done so with the intent of scandal to drive ratings.

They want Jason Castro gone.  He’s trying hard to oblige.  Forever in Bluejeans was okay, and suited him, but this is the top five.  He barely belonged in the top ten.

David Cook risked singing stuff nobody knew.  It was good.  Possibly only second best, this week, but you know what you can expect of him when he produces an album.

Brooke’s first performance reminded me of Kristy Lee’s Eight Days a Week, which is a really bad thing.  If Jason is safe, Brooke won’t be, despite her second number being okay.  For I’m a Believer, which she wouldn’t have been my pick to sing, it’s as if someone told her she had to smile and look happy and look at the audience.  So she did, in an artificial-looking way.  It’s perhaps bad that she did perhaps my two favorites of the whole catalog, and ones I love to sing.  I thought whichever judge it was said I Am, I Said was hard to sing was nuts.  For that, she was back to hiding comfortably behind the piano, which doesn’t an idol make, however pleasantly sung.  Perhaps she should return to the Arizona Shore.

David Archuletta was remarkably weak, but he seemed to have gotten better this week at looking at the audience and seeming engaging.  It was just okay, certainly not the performance of the anointed.  No chance of a shock elimination, but I was seeing visions of a finale between David Cook and…

Syesha has completely transformed.  If she’d turned on the star power sooner, people wouldn’t be on elimination watch, even rooting for her to go despite good performances.  She earned a career last week.  This week was like the “and I mean it” underscore to that, and some.  I don’t think she’d be eliminated this week, even if Dial Idol weren’t showing her in first place.  Even David Cook wasn’t up there with her this week.  It was a four tier week, with her at the top, and the bottom occupied by Jason and Brooke.

Bottom line, it’s Jason and Brooke at the bottom.  I’d like to say Jason will leave, but fan base wise it’d probably be a safer bet to say we’ll have the Brooke meltdown this week.  And if it is as much of a meltdown as expected, that would fit perfectly with the Paula gaffe, making it a one-two punch.

Posted by on 04/30 at 10:17 AM
  1. That Paula ting was funny.  I had to leave the room for a minute and cam e back just in time to hear Paula talking about Jason’s second song.  I said to Emily, “Did I miss something?  I thought he only sang once so far?’ Emily said, “No, you didn’t Mom, Paula is just crazy.”

    Posted by Sharon  on  04/30  at  01:27 PM  from 
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