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American Idol Recap – Top 11 Perform…Again

I’m usually one to brush off any talk about Idol conspiracies and whatnot, but last week smelled fishier than the dumpster outside of a Long John Silver’s.  He may not have had a great performance, but I’m not believing that Casey Abrams received the least amount of votes, especially with the likes of Haley Reinhart and Naima Adedapo hanging around.  And with the judges cutting Casey off just seconds into his “save-me” performance, it just seemed all too perfectly dramatic.

With ratings the lowest they’ve been in years, and Steven Tyler all of a sudden becoming Ellen Degeneres 2.0, Idol needed to do something dramatic and drastic, and it’s worked, as the focus of all their advertising this week has been about last week’s shocker.  And now this week, all 11 will be back (and all 11 are going on tour) and I fully expect Naima or Haley to be at least one of the two, if not both, to be eliminated this week.  But there’s no way Casey is voted off two straight weeks.

Anyway,  here’s how I have the Top 11 ranked again going into this week…

1. Lauren Alaina (1)
2. Pia Toscano (2)
3. Casey Abrams (3)
4. Thia Megia (4)
5. James Durbin (8)
6. Stefano Langone (5)
7. Scott McCreery (7)
8. Paul McDonald (6)
9. Jacob Lusk (10)
10. Naima Adedapo (9)
11. Haley Reinhart (11)

Tonight’s theme, songs of Elton John.  Another recycled theme, but last used in season 3 if I’m not mistaken, so I’m ok with that (anyone remember John Stevens trying to do “Crocodile Rock”? – well I do, check it out here – it’s the second video on the page, it’s worth the trip down memory lane)

Scotty McCreery (“Country Comfort”) – he chose this song because it had the word “country” in it.  Way to branch out there Scotty.  He also yells out “love you Grandma” in the middle of it, and I’m fairly positive that wasn’t in the original lyrics.  It is refreshing to not see Scotty tilt his head to the left with the mic coming in sideways from the right.  He may be a one-trick cowboy, but it’s continuing to work for him.


Naima Adedapo (“I’m Still Standing”) – ooook, now it’s Jamaican Idol as Naima has decided to completely reggae herself, the stage, her outfit and the song.  This doesn’t work for me, or the judges, or the audience or Bob Marley who came back from the dead to yell at Naima for this hokey nonsense.  By the way, Steven Tyler has become completely useless, his comment of “good for you for picking a song that fits you” doesn’t really apply here, b/c she essentially made up her own song here.  One and done year for Tyler.


Paul McDonald (“Rocket Man”) – one note in and it’s already better than William Shatner’s version.  Actually nice to see Paul standing still and not acting like a wild wacky waving inflatable arm flaling tube man and didn’t mind this kind of tender slow version of a classic.  Dude needs to lose the rose jacket, that’s like the sixth time he’s rocked it.  It can not be rocked anymore.


Pia Toscano (“Don’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me”) – what about Jarrett instead of the sun?  Wow, another ballad Pia? Come on now, I can’t keep defending you.  I will give her an A+ if in the middle of the performance she yells out in a british accent “ladies and gentlemen, Mr. Elton John!!!”  She does sound amazing here and the backup choir is a great touch.  Ok, I’ll allow the ballad this week, but she had better do something upbeat and fun next week.


Stefano Langone (“Tiny Dancer”) – not a good song choice for Stefano’s voice, much like Lionel Richie’s “Hello” version he did last week.  Amazingly as much as I haven’t been a fan of his, I thought Jacob would have been a more interesting choice for this song.  This is pretty much close to garbage and is not doing Stefano any favors after being second from the bottom last week.


Lauren Alaina (“Candle In the Wind”) – fun fact that I’m making up or guessing on.  Lauren was still in diapers when Princess Di died.  This is the best selling single of all-time, but slightly unfair since it was released twice (the second time after Di).  This was a different side of Lauren, very adult-like, very sensitive and the first time in several weeks that we’ve seen the front-runner Lauren act like a front-runner.  If only now we can work on her post-song interview where she reverts back to being a giggling teenager.


James Durbin – (“Saturday Night’s Alright For Fighting) – Very interesting.  James rocked this one, singing all over the audience/stage, throwing the mic stand and then setting the piano on fire.  I know Elton John was flaming, but he didn’t need to torch the red piano.


Thia Megia – (“Daniel”) – Really pretty performance, and since I have nothing else to add about this, let me just say that I find it very odd that Elton John is hosting Saturday Night Live this week.


Casey Abrams – (“Your Song”) – wait a sec, wasn’t Casey voted off last week?  If it wasn’t a conspiracy, I’m glad the judges saved him, because he’s definitely got the talent to go far, as we saw when he did possibly the coolest version of “Georgia On My Mind” during Hollywood week.  Casey decided to alter his look and went to the barber who might have taken about 1/8-inch off his hair and cut his beard in half.  After this incredible performance, if Casey doesn’t get the most votes this week, then all of America should be drug-tested for being on crack.


IDOL TRIVIA – who besides Casey Abrams have the judges “saved” in previous season?  Answers at the bottom.

Jacob Lusk –  (“Sorry Seems To Be The Highest Word”) – more special treatment tonight for Jacob, as he gets the fog machine and the solo spotlight. Seriously,  he’s not that good, why are they force feeding us Jacob?  He sounds and looks like he’s crying every note of every song.  Is this some sort of Make-A-Wish thing we’re not supposed to know about?


Haley Reinhart – (“Benny and the Jets”) – we’re giving Haley the pimp spot tonight?  Haley’s best line during the pre-taped interview “Jimmy really likes that bang hard on the piano.”  Heh heh.  Haley starts off laying on the red piano, and I’m secretly hoping that James Durbin can set it on fire again.  Has anyone ever gone home singing last with this many people left?  Because this was atrocious and Haley and her growl needs to go home.  This can’t be the last performance on Idol tonight.  That would be like going to see U2 in concert opening for Creed as the closing act.  Judges all think it was the best of the night.  We need new judges.


Definitely Safe: Casey Abrams, Lauren Alaina and Pia Toscano

Has Enough Fans To Save Them: James Durbin, Scotty McCreery and Jacob Lusk

Wouldn’t Be Shocked To See Go Home: Haley Reinhart and Thia Megia

Bottom Three: Naima Adedapo, Stefano Langone and Paul McDonald

Going Home Prediction: Naima and Stefano (the judges kind words keep Haley out of the bottom)

ANSWER TO TRIVIA QUESTION – Matt Giraud (season 8) and Michael Lynche (season 9)

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