Weekly Watch: American Idol – Idols Singing Idols

Fellow Idol worshippers, we’re finally getting into the guts of American Idol.  This week, the contestants got to pick songs sung by their idols, which made for some interesting choices.

The Count
Some of the count items have changed to be more general – to include any time anyone does a certain thing, and not restricting it to certain individuals.  Check out the hiccup count this week!

Here’s a quick take on each of this week’s performances.

Lauren Alaina – Lauren picked every drunk girl’s favorite Shania Twain karaoke song, Any Man of Mine (yes, I’m including my self in that group).  Lauren is the second coming of Carrie Underwood, and Carrie Underwood sang about drunken Shania Twain karaoke…coincidence?  I thought her performance was just okay, but Jimmy & Co and the judges clearly love her, so she should be safe.

Casey Abrams – Was anyone surprised that Casey picked a growling, spastic song?  I thought he kept the vocal acrobatics to a minimum though, and enjoyed his performance of With a Little Help From My Friends.  Steven Tyler pulled out his thesaurus for Casey’s critique – has the word “plethora” ever been used on Idol before?  A toned-down yet great performance, the judges loved him – he should be safe.

Ashthon Jones – I grew up listening to Diana Ross (thanks, Mom!), but I’ve never heard this song (When You Tell Me That You Love Me), so can’t really comment on it.  JLo even commented on this – vindication!  I did cringe a few times during the high notes, if that means anything.  The judges liked it, but they weren’t as effusive in their praise to get people excited.  She could land in the bottom.

Paul McDonald – Paul will probably annoy me soon with his “I’m such an artist” attitude.  He sang some song by Ryan Adams, a song and an artist I’ve never heard before.  I could barely understand anything at the beginning of the song.  He did bust out the white boy dance moves again.  Thanks for that, Paul.  The judges spend a lot of time talking about his character, but not as much about his actual singing ability…and isn’t this a singing competition?  Judges love him, and he made it through despite so little screen time, so he’s probably safe this week.  Paul was too distracted by Seacrest’s lampooning of his dancing to show us that he knows how to count.

Pia Toscano – Does Rachel Bilson realize that All By Myself wasn’t originally Celine Dion’s song?  I thought she was great, but the song is a bit repetitive, right?  How many times did she belt out “all by myself” before you started to tune out.  She’s shown us she can do the big belting ballads, but Rachel Bilson’s going to have to switch up soon because no one wants an album full of schmaltzy, adult contemporary songs.  I don’t think the judges could have a harder collective boner for her (literally – looking at you, Steven Tyler – and figuratively).

James Durbin – Our resident Screecher Monkey sang a Paul McCartney song and, like Casey, kept his usual vocal antics to a minimum, making it an enjoyable performance.  It was nice to see him sing something more low-key, and the judges ate it up.


Haley Reinhart – Color me surprised – not – that Haley picked LeAnn Rimes, one of the most offensive hiccupers, and Blue, one of the most hiccup-intense songs EVER.  Haley threw up over 20 hiccups for us and added in some bonus growls, too.  I find Haley’s voice neither unique nor do I find her to have exceptional vocal ability.  Vocal gymnastics do not an amazing singer make.  And the whole bit about her being sexy and sensual?  Strange.

Jacob Lusk – This guy is adorable.  And he likes R. Kelly!  I love, love, love I Believe I Can Fly.  He didn’t disappoint – he has a great upper register, but I like it better when he sings a bit lower.  I know the mentors steered him more towards making it “his own”, but I would have loved to hear him sing it just as the original.  Only Randy offered some actual constructive criticism, but he should be safe.

Thia Megia – Do you think Thia even knew who Michael Jackson was before last week?  I typically root for the Asians in reality competitions, but I just can’t get behind her.  She irrationally irritates me.  She’s not super offensive but I don’t find her spectacular either.  She’s just…there.  And I wish she’d go away.  JLo called her voice “transcendent”.  Wow, someone else pulled out her thesaurus today.  Our favorite stoned pageant queen can’t distinguish between Charlie Chapman and Charlie Chaplin, and hopes to be “more better” next week.  Of course, then I saw her cry, and I felt really bad.

Stefano Langone – Once Jimmy made that comment about opening his eyes, that’s really all I paid attention to.  Stefano’s certainly got the vocal ability to compete, so let’s see how far he goes.  Similar to Thia, he’s kind of just there, but I do like him.  Whether he stays or not is another question, especially because he only made it through as a wild card.

Karen Rodriguez – Her intro video was adorable.  I thought her performance was just okay – I agreed with Randy’s critique that it was sleepy.  Karen seems like such a fun person, and we know she can sing (she tackled Mariah last week!), so I would have thought her performance would have been better.  She could end up in the bottom, but I doubt she’ll go home.

Scotty McCreery – Scotty sang some Garth Brooks.  I don’t know the song, but I enjoyed his rendition.  The crowd definitely seemed to like it.  I’m glad that he’s not veering away from what he’s good at.  He could go far – don’t underestimate the country fans out there!  I’m starting to think I might have put him too low in the Idol pool I’m participating in.  He should be safe this week.

Naima Adedapo – Naima got this week’s pimp spot and went with Rihanna. I thought she sounded just okay, and the judges didn’t really love her performance.  She made it through as a wild card, and without a standout performance, she could find herself in the bottom tonight.

Of Note

  • The cuts were harsh last week.  In the past, most contestants had a few performances at least until they got the boot, and it was actually a little hard to see some of the contestants eliminated after only one performance.
  • The person I felt the most for was Robbie Rosen.  It’s okay, Robbie.  Let’s get together and sing some West Side Story and Grease together, what do you say?

  • JLo has never heard of Ryan Adams.  Probably because her brain automatically filters out anything that isn’t autotuned with mindless lyrics.
  • The new mentor team system is interesting.  It’s nice to seem some actual mentoring going on, and more importantly, some consistent mentoring.  And it’s a nice change to have the mentors be actual industry producers, and not “artists” like they’ve had in the past.
  • Adam Lambert, the original Idol Screecher, is going to be on the results show tonight.  James, take note.
  • Idol really couldn’t get the IDOLS-13 number?
Random Thoughts

  • What does JL know about notes and pitch?  Her latest #1 hit was so heavily autotuned I wondered if there was any actual singing in it.
  • Where do you think Paul gets his wacky jackets from?  Do you think he blows all of his weekly clothing allowance on jackets?
  • The Dr. Dre beats product placement was ridiculous.

Last week I was 4 for 5 on the girls who made it through (PROM DATE BARBIE WENT HOME, much to my delight!), and I was 3 for 5 on the boys (BYE-BYE HIPSTER CLINT).

  • Definitely safe: Lauren, James, Jacob, Rachel Bilson, Scotty, Casey, Paul
  • In danger: Stefano, Thia, Haley
  • Bottom: Naima, Karen, Ashthon

American Idol will put you to sleep tonight with its unnecessarily dramatic results show tonight, Thursday, 3/10, and will assault your vocal sensibilities next Wednesday, 3/16, both at 8/7C on Fox.

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