No Surprises in American Idol’s Second 12 Results

February 27, 2009

Why it takes American Idol an hour to give us three names, I’ll never understand. The results of the second 12 group were predictable and boring. The fact that I have correctly guessed the three survivors for two weeks in a row has little to do with my prediction abilities and more to do with the limited talent pool in Season 8.

Of course the hour had the standard filler. We learned that 25 million votes came in Wednesday night. Then we got the “how they got here” clip followed by the group number to “Closer” by Ne-Yo. And, of course, we got another look at the highlights from Wednesday before we even got to the results.

But the repeat of the Idol retrospective to “What a Wonderful World” was a new low in filler. Let’s just cut the results show back to half hour. Please, I’m begging you!

And if you thought the results themselves would pull you from the dullness of the fluff, you were wrong. No matter how Ryan tried to spin it, there just wasn’t any suspense in the announcement of the three contestants that will be moving through to the Final 12.

It was absolutely no suprise that Allison Iraheta, Kris Allen and Adam Lambert were the top picks. Their encore performances all showed why they were chosen.

The highlight of the evening was the return of Season 7 finalist Brooke White who sang her first single “Hold Up My Heart,” which she cowrote.

 

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Drama Queen Survives Idol’s Hollywood Round 3

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Allison Iraheta Rocks Idol’s Second 12

February 26, 2009

After a rocky start, Allison Iraheta proved that the second group of the Top 36 wasn’t without some talent as American Idol vets its second 12.

This little girl has a big voice

This little girl has a big voice

But before we get to the performances, let’s talk about the changes this week from last week.  First, they got rid of the uncomfortable parent interviews following the performances.  Like what else are parents going to say but that they thought their son/daughter did a great job?

The judges also had some changes.  First, they sat in opposite order.  Secondly, they alternated who critiqued the contestant first.  I actually liked this format better.  You get a different perspective each time.  My only complaint is when Paula goes first.  She still doesn’t make much sense.

As for the contestants, several of them we have heard very little from going into the night so it was a little hard to predict what we’d see.  Unfortunately, too many of the performances were forgettable.

The Best

I was beginning to wonder if we were going to have anyone stand out tonight.  But then came Allison Iraheta.  This girl might only be 16, but she can rock.  We haven’t seen Allison since her audition so I wasn’t sure what to expect when she said she’d be singing “Alone” by Heart, but I have to say I’m impressed.  The beginning was a little shaky, but we can chalk that up to the stage fright Kara mentioned.  But once Allison found her grove, she proved that she’s a contender.

Also impressive was Kris Allen’s version of “Man in the Mirror.”  I’m not a big fan of contestants doing Michael Jackson, but I thought Kris did a really good job.  He was personable, entertaining and the vocals were great.  Kara said the performance didn’t measure to those he did in Hollywood, but since we didn’t get to see most of them I can’t comment on the comparison. 

While this episode might have had a rough start, it definitely had a solid ending.  Adam Lambert took on The Rolling Stone and I have to say that his version of “Satisfaction” was very satisfying.  Sure it might have been, as Randy said, a little manic, but hey it’s the Stones.  I definitely think that Adam has improved since his audition.

The Clown

But as good as the above three were, the most memorable performance goes to Nick Mitchell, aka Norman Gentle.  Unfortunately, as entertaining as Nick’s version of “And I’m Telling You I’m Not Going” from Dreamgirls was, he vocals just didn’t shine tonight.

I think it’s about time for Nick and Idol to part.  But I really hope this guy gets some kind of gig out of this experience, because he really is funny.

The Rest

The other eight performances were average.  I don’t think anyone totally bombed it, but overall the performances were forgettable.

Jasmine Murray led off the night with “Love Song” Sara Bareilles.  It was a nice fun song with a little spunk, but it just didn’t do anything for me and I’m a fan of Jasmine.  She had a rough beginning and just never really recovered.

The dueling piano player has dueling song personalities.  Matt Giraud wants to sing pop songs like Coldplay’s “Viva La Vida”.  But I – and the judges – like him better when he’s singing the blues.  I also like seeing him behind the keyboard better.

Overenthusiasm got better Jeanine Vailes.  She wanted to get noticed.  Instead she just overdid “This Love” by Maroon 5.  She just tried too hard.

But enthusiasm worked for Megan Joy Corkrey.  The judges really liked her version of Corinne Bailey Rae’s “Put Your Records On.”  I think she’s got an interesting voice, but the weird dancing thing was just distracting.

And when will the contestants learn to pick the right song?  Even after the judges told him it was the wrong song, Matt Breitzke said he would have still picked “If You Could Only See” by Tonic.  I really like this guy’s voice, but I have to agree with Simon that the performance was boring.

Jesse Langseth also picked her favorite song – Kim Carnes’ “Bette Davis Eyes.”  But her performance just didn’t measure up to the original.  I think she sounded better than in the sing off from Hollywood Week, but it just wasn’t memorable.

Standing out was also an issue for Kai Kalama who’s version of “What Becomes of the Broken Hearted” by Jimmy Ruffin was a little old fashion for Kara.  This guy definitely needs to find something more hip to sing if he wants to avoid comparisons to a wedding singer.

Mishavonna Henson also came across as much older than her 18 years.  While I like Train’s “Drops of Jupiter,” Mishavonna’s performance just fell flat for me.  I think Kara nailed it when she told Mishavonna to loosen up.

My picks for those who will be returning are Allison, Kris and Adam.  We will find out on Thursday who makes it.

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Bikini Girl Blows Idol’s Hollywood Round 2

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American Idol First Result Show Full of Heartbreak

February 19, 2009

Tonight marked the first results show of American Idol’s eighth season, but instead of sending just one or two contestants home the night ended with only three survivors.

The show started liked it has many times before.  Ryan welcomes us, telling us that an unprecedented 24 million votes were cast.  He introduces the judges (four this year) and the contestants sing a group number – “I’m Yours.”

After Ryan does a recap of the night before, we are shown the three stools.  But these stools aren’t for the bottom three as they have been in years past.  Instead these stools are for the first three of the Final 12.

Despite all the hype, the show is full of heartbreak.  It was just sad to watch one after another told they are going home.  Even though I wasn’t impressed with many of them Tuesday night, it was painful to watch one disappointed face after another when they got the news. 

Each of the contestants staying got to sing an encore of his/her Tuesday night performance.

The first to take up residence in the precious stools is – no surprise – Alexis Grace.  She proved last night that she has come a long way from her audition.  And in a night full of train wrecks for the females, she was clearly the best of the night.

The announcement of the next survivor was the biggest suspense of the night.  Ryan called up both Michael Sarver and Anoop Desai and told them that one of them would be returning.  It turns out that only 20,000 votes separated the pair so it was really a close call.

When Ryan announced that Michael would be staying, I actually stood up and did a happy dance.  I definitely think both gentlemen would be a good addition to the Final 12, but there’s something about Michael that just stands out for me.  I hope that Anoop will be back in the Wild Card Round.

The final seat came down to Danny Gokey and Tatiana Del Toro.  Normally the decision would be clear cut, but given Tatiana’s staying ability anything was possible.  In the end talent won out over drama – Danny stays.

We also learned that the American Idol Experience has opened at Walt Disney World Resort and that all seven past Idol winners were on hand to perform at the opening. 

Speaking of past performers, Season 7 finalists Carly Smithson and Michael Johns were on hand to perform a duet to “The Letter.”  I thought they both sounded great, but when they sang together Carly overpowered Michael so much that you could barely hear him.

I am happy to say that I called all three of the survivors – Alexis, Michael and Danny.  The results of Tuesday’s poll had two of the three – Alexis, Ricky and Danny.

Next week we see the second group of 12.

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Alexis Finds Some Soul during Idol’s First 12

February 18, 2009

The auditions are in the bag and Hollywood is but a faint memory as American Idol begins to whittle down the Top 36 to our Final 12.  Tonight, the first 12 contestants pull out all the stops in their first live performance and Alexis Grace comes out swinging.

Alexis proves she's got a little soul.

Alexis proves she's got a little soul.

This year, the road to the Final 12 is quite different.  The Top 36 (not 24) announced after Hollywood have been divided into three groups of 12.  Over the next three weeks starting tonight, each group will perform once in a two-hour edition of American Idol.  The following night all but three – the top male performer, the top female and the contestant with the next largest amount of votes — will be sent home, leaving us with a total of nine performers.  Then in the wild card round three performers will be brought back to round out the Final 12. 

Anyone else think this process is confusing and convoluted?  Me too, but this is what we are stuck with.  Now on to the performances of the First 12.

The Great

When I first saw Alexis Grace in the Louisville audition, I knew that she had a powerful voice, but I wondered if she was going to have what it took to be a great performer.  Tonight she came out of her shell and proved, as Randy put it, that she had some soul.  Alexis put a nice bluesy feel to her version of Aretha Franklin’s “I Never Loved a Man.”  She is definitely a contender.

Also pleasing the crowd tonight was fan-favorite Danny Gokey.  He proved that he has a nice voice taking on “Hero” by Mariah Carey and earned the praise of three of the four judges.  But I tended to agree with Simon that it was a good performance, but not fantastic.  To me, it just seemed like a weird song choice for him.  However, Danny was still the best of the guys we saw.

The Good

Brent Keith decided to show off his country side by singing “Hicktown” by Jason Aldean and he might actually have a career in country music.  He sounded good, but as the judges said he chose a safe song.  The performance was fun, but we didn’t get to hear anything that really showed us Brent’s potential.

Also putting in a decent performance was Anoop Desai who chose to sing Monica’s “Angel of Mine.”  Personally, I thought the song was all wrong for him.  I like Anoop better we he does upbeat songs, like “My Prerogative” that he sang in Hollywood.  Simon told him that the song was “a bit too grown up” for him.

Wrong song choice put several good singers in jeopardy.  I’m not sure the Gavin McGraw’s “I Don’t Want to Be” was the best choice for Michael Sarver.  He did a decent job with the song, but I don’t think it highlighted his talents.  However, he seemed to really have fun with his choice.  I’m just hoping it will be enough to keep him in the game. 

On the other hand, Anne Marie Boskovich put a country flair to “A Natural Woman.”  Personally, I prefer the soul of Aretha’s version, but unlike the judges, I think that this rendition worked for Anne Marie.  She is no Aretha, but she has come a long way from her audition and I thought this performance showed that.

The Mediocre

Unfortunately, not everyone had a good night.  Jackie Tohn led off the show with “A Little Less Conversation” by Elvis Presley.  She put her own twist on the song, but it just didn’t compare to the King.  I give her credit for making the song her own, but the growl in her voice just didn’t work with this song.

On the other hand, tonight we finally got to find out that Ricky Braddy has a nice voice since we didn’t get to hear him during either of the two previous phases.  He sang “A Song for You” by Leon Russell and sounded good.  But, alas, I have no investment in him and by the end of the show I’d forgotten all about his performance.

Also not having a great night was Stephen Fowler.  No, he didn’t forget the lyrics again, but it’s not a good sign when Simon says he wished he did.  When Stephen started singing Michael Jackson’s “Rock with You,” I had images of the Love Boat.  The performance improved and turned out to be a fun song, but it just wasn’t enough.

And last on my list of mediocre was drama queen Tatiana Del Toro.  But tonight she was reserved and tried to sing “Saving All My Love for You” by Whitney Houston.  I wanted to hate it, but she didn’t do half bad.  But you can’t choose a song by Whitney and not be compared and Tatiana just didn’t measure up. 

The Bottom

But no episode of Idol is complete without at least one train wreck.  Tonight we had two – and bad song choice was the cause.  Casey Carlson tried to take on Police’s “Every Little Thing She Does is Magic” while Stevie Wright sang “You Belong With Me” by Taylor Swift.

Unfortunately, it looks like nerves got the better of the both girls.  They both had weak beginnings and at best sounded like karaoke.  It’s a shame because we have heard much better performances from both.

So the first set of 12 is behind us.  Who will be the lucky three to stay?

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Prowler or FedEx – Making Midnight Deliveries?

February 13, 2009

Last night at five til midnight, I was awakened startled, my internal alarm raised by my dogs who alerted me that someone was at my house.

My doorbell hasn’t rung, no knocks on the door have been heard (the dogs would have barked if there were) and no visitors were expected at this late hour, so at this point I really starting to panic.  Do I have a prowler?

My husband also alarmed leaps from the bed to glance out our second story window.  He discovers a FedEx truck in front of our house.

But by the time my husband got downstairs to the front door (still clad in his nightclothes), the driver was creeping down the street in his truck, leaving only an illegible door tag with the First Delivery Attempt box checked.

Delivery attempt?  How can that be an attempt, the driver never even knocked?  And who delivers to a residence at midnight?!

The driver didn’t knock because he knew it was wrong.  Heck even telemarketers aren’t allowed to call after 9 p.m.  What makes it okay to deliver packages at midnight? 

The door tag left was in rough shape.  It looked like someone had spilled some liquid on it and then air dried it.  The red ink was faded and smeared.

I had been expecting a package – a new computer that requires a signature.  In fact, I’ve been waiting all day for that package.  The tracking number had indicated it would be delivered that day, but before we went to bed at 10 p.m. we checked the tracking website and it said it hadn’t even been loaded on the truck and was still at the facility in Ashland, VA.

Thank goodness a signature was required or my computer would have been left sitting on my porch all night long.

Awake and very angry, we called the FedEx customer service line.  The call was less than helpful, but we learned three very interesting things.

First, we aren’t the only family complaining about late night deliveries.

Second, deliveries into the wee hours of the night are indeed a current business practice of FedEx.  Despite the fact that the website lists delivery times for residences as Tuesday through Saturday 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.

And thirdly, FedEx contractors take their trucks home at night where the truck and its contents are parked in an unsecure location.  Makes you feel real good about the safety of your package, right?

But a half hour on the phone didn’t even get us an apology for the inconvenience.  I still didn’t have my computer, I got the wits scared out of my by our late night visitor and I’ve lost half a night’s sleep (who can get back to sleep after a scare like that). 

This morning we finally got in touch with the fleet manager at the Ashland facility and have finally got an apology and my computer delivered.  But the fact remains that these late night deliveries should not be allowed.

I checked with the local sheriff’s department and apparently there is no law preventing these late night deliveries.  But there should be!

I like to ask everyone to boycott FedEx, but you don’t always get a say in who delivers your package.  However, if you are sending packages, I ask you to ponder the safety and reliability of FedEx before using them.

And if you are the recipient of one of these late night visitors in an “attempted” delivery I ask that you do two things.  First contact your local police and complain.  If enough of us complain maybe they’ll put a stop to it.  Secondly, contact FedEX and let them know that deliveries to residences after 8 p.m. are unacceptable for the safety of our families!


Idol Announces Top 36, Joanna Pacitti Disqualified

February 12, 2009

It was do or die time on American Idol as Hollywood Week came to a close and the judges informed the final 54 who made the cut for the Top 36.  Among the surviving were three that have been very visible during Hollywood Week — drama queen Tatiana Del Toro, funnyman Nick Mitchell and the emotional Nathaniel Marshall.

This final round played out slightly different than in past years.  For starters, the cut was down to the Top 36, not 24 as in years past.  And some contestants who were borderline had to perform in a sing off with one other contender in which only one survived.

Louisville and Phoenix tied for the audition city the produced the most finalists – seven each.  San Francisco and New York City also had five contenders each.

Twenty-three was the magic number for contenders – nine of the Top 36 were that age.  The next two most popular ages were 16 and 27, which had five of each.

But what you really want to know is who made the cut.  So without further ado, here is your Top 36.

Annop Desai, the 21-year-old college student that we first met at the Kansas City auditions.  We caught a glimpse of him in Round 1 of Hollywood and last night he sang “My Prerogative.”

Von Smith sang “Over the Rainbow” in his Kansas City audition.  But we haven’t seen the 22-year-old singer since Hollywood’s Round 1.

Alex Wagner-Trugman won a sing off against pal Cody Sheldon for his spot.  During the Phoenix audition, Alex told us about how he taught himself to sing in a closet, but had to stop because the mold made him sick.  Since then we haven’t seen the 19-year-old college student.

Adam Lambert was in the cast of Wicked before he auditioned in San Francisco.  But we only got to see the 26-year-old stage actor perform once during Hollywood – in Round 3.

Taylor Vaifanua’s parents moved back to the mainland so that the 16-year-old high school student could get her break.  She impressed the judges in her audition in Salt Lake City and we got a glimpse of her again during as a member of the Rainbow Coalition on group day in Hollywood.

Jasmine Murray came to the audition in Jacksonville with a lot of family support among her sisters.  But the 16-year-old high school student has wowed me during every round of Hollywood.

Arianna Afsar is the 16-year-old who told us in Phoenix about the Adopt-a-Grandfriend program she started.  While she was impressive during her audition, we haven’t seen her perform during Hollywood.

Casey Carlson is a 20-year-old bubble tea maker we met in Kansas City when she sang “A Thousand Miles.”  We got to see her again during Round 3 where she struggled with lyrics.

Megan Corkrey, a 23-year-old font designer going through a divorce, auditioned in Salt Lake City, but we haven’t seen her since.

Mishavonna Henson, the 18-year-old we met for the first time in Round 3, audition in Phoenix this year.  Last year she made it as far as Hollywood before getting cut.

Stevie Wright was told by Simon in her Phoenix audition to grow some teeth.  We haven’t seen the 16-year-old in Hollywood to know if she’s taken that advice to heart.

Joanna Pacitti was recognized by Kara during her Louisville audition as having had a previous record contest.  But the 23-year-old struggled with lyrics during the Hollywood Round 3.

Felicia Barton got a last minute reprieve and got added to the Top 36 after Joanna got disqualified.  Felicia auditioned in Louisville, but we haven’t seen the 26-year-old bar singer and mom during Hollywood.

Kendall Beard hasn’t had much screen time.  The 23-year-old college student auditioned in Puerto Rico

Kristen McNamara, who auditioned in Louisville, beat out Jenn Korbee in a sing off.  The 22-year-old survived the group day drama to sing Kelly Clarkson’s “Because of You” in Round 3.

Alexis Grace, the 20-year-old stay-at-home mom wowed us during the audition in Louisville, but we didn’t get to see her again until she took on Carrie Underwood’s “Before He Cheats” in Round 3.

Scott Macintyre, the visually impaired pianist, auditioned in Phoenix.  But the 23-year-old looked very comfortable behind the keyboard when he performed in Round 3.

Lil Rounds told us about a tornado that hit her home when she auditioned in Kansas City.  Since then the 23-year-old customer service representative and mom of three has proved that she’s a vocal powerhouse with performances in Rounds 1 and 3.

Jessie Langseth beat out Frankie Jordan in a sing off.  Unfortunately, the sing off was the first time we’ve seen this 25-year-old perform.  She auditioned in Kansas City.

Allison Iraheta is a 16-year-old who auditioned in San Francisco, but we haven’t seen her in Hollywood.

Danny Gokey recently lost his wife and auditioned in Phoenix with his friend Jamar Rogers who got cut tonight.  The 28-year-old music teacher has had solid performances through all three rounds of Hollywood.

Ricky Braddy is a new face.  Although the 25-year-old auditioned in Louisville, tonight is the first time we’ve seen him.  We have not yet heard him sing.

Matt Giraud, the 23-year-old dueling pianist, auditioned in Louisville.  During the group round he was part of the impressive White Chocolate group and he sang “Georgia” in the third round.

Ju’Not Joyner auditioned in New York City, but the first time we got to see the 23-year-old was in Round 3.

Jorge Nunez impressed the judges with his accent during the Puerto Rico auditions.  We also saw the 20-year-old during Round 1.

Brent Keith is a traveling musician who auditioned in Louisville. However, we haven’t seen the 28-year-old during Hollywood week.

Stephen Fowler auditioned in New York City, but we didn’t get to hear him sing until the first round of Hollywood.  While Round 1 was impressive, the 26-year-old struggled during Round 3.

Nick Mitchell has entertained the judges since his New York City audition with alter ego Norman Gentle.  We saw the 27-year-old don the persona again in Rounds 1 and 3 and apparently the judges like it because they told him they expected to see it during the rest of the competition.

Jackie Tohn’s start in the music business began at a young age when her father taught her the piano.  And although she carried a guitar to the audition in New York City, we did not see the 27-year-old actor/singer use it when she performed in Round 1 of Hollywood.

Tatiana Del Toro auditioned in San Francisco with a creepy laugh.  Since then the 23-year-old singer/actor/model has brought nothing but drama to Rounds 2 and 3.  She left this round with a ring from Paula.

Nathaniel Marshall beat out pal Jackie Midkiff in a sing off.  The 18-year-old auditioned in New York City, but we didn’t see him for the first time until Round 1 where he begged the judges for a reprieve.  Despite the drama of the group performance he survived to perform in Round 3.

Jeanine Vailes auditioned in San Francisco, but we have yet to hear the 27-year-old sing.

Kai Kalama plays music at night so he could take care of his ailing mother.  The 26-year-old auditioned in San Francisco and performed during Round 3.

Anne Marie Boskovich actually auditioned twice in Jacksonville.  After her first try, Simon told her to come back and show them who she really was.  We’ve also seen the 22-year-old nanny perform in Rounds two and three.

Kris Allen auditioned in Louisville, but the only time we’ve seen the 23-year-old perform was during the White Chocolate group performance.

Matt Breitzke took a chance from his family responsibilities to audition in Kansas City.  The only other time we’ve seen the 27-year-old welder perform was during the group round.

Michael Sarver auditioned in Phoenix.  Since then we’ve seen the 27-year-old roughneck sing in all three Hollywood rounds.  He’s my favorite male contender.

From here, the contestants will perform in groups of 12.  First up are Casey, Stephen, Jackie, Ricky, Anne Marie, Brent, Alexis, Michael, Stevie, Danny, Tatiana and Anoop.

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Has American Idol Jumped the Shark?

February 12, 2009

Has American Idol lost its touch?  Is it sacrificing the charm of the show for the almighty rating point?  Or has the show just reached its prime and is now in the downslide?

I’m fairly new to the phenomenon known as American Idol.  Having only joined the millions of fans in Season 6 my frame of reference is narrow, but even I can see that the show isn’t what it used to be.  In its eighth season, the show is definitely starting to show its age.

When the show launched the season with a two-hour audition in Phoenix, I was hopeful that we’d see some real talent this year.  Boy was I mistaken.  I’m not saying there aren’t some gems among the rough, but they are few and far between.

While Phoenix and Kansas City were fruitful, the other audition cities were bogged down with mediocre talent that took up screen time.  The only saving grace was that these episodes were limited to an hour.

Idol might have tried the kinder gentler version by showing less train wrecks, but it failed two fold.

First, from what I understand a distinct portion of the audience tune in for the express purpose of watching the train wrecks.  While I’m not big on the mean factor and those that just want to throw tantrums, the parade of weird and bizarre is entertaining.

Second, Idol didn’t fill the extra minutes with quality screen time of real contenders.  Instead we got montages and lots of filler that amounted to nothing.  How many times can we see a hodgepodge of clips of the judges saying no?  And why did we need to devote 10 minutes to each reject telling us how their life is over because they didn’t get a ticket to Hollywood?

Instead, some of us would really like to see people sing.  I’m not naïve enough to think that Idol is a true talent contest, but let’s pretend that the show is about singing. 

I would’ve even taken more back stories on those Hollywood bound . . . anything so I don’t have to watch Bikini Girl try to make out with Ryan again.

Of the 147 that made it to Hollywood, we only got to 61 of them during the audition phase.  But I, like others, endured the audition phase thinking it’s okay we’ll get to really hear people sing in Hollywood.  Wrong answer!

Hollywood was expanded this year – something I think I even wished for last year – to five hours over four nights.

You know how they say be careful what you wish for?  If I’d know what I was going to get, I would not have asked for more Hollywood week.

In the five hours of air time, I think we got to see maybe – and that’s probably a stretch – two hours of actual singing.  And we still didn’t get to hear everyone sing.

Much of the time was given to backstage drama and the contestants causing that drama.  In the first round of Hollywood, we only got to see three contestants that we didn’t see during the auditions.

And others that were given much hype during the auditions – Michael Castro, Joanna Pacitti, David Osmond, etc – were conspicuously absent from the Hollywood footage.  We didn’t even get to see what caused an Osmond to get cut (turns out, according to David’s blog, it was a case of laryngitis).  Now that’s drama I would have liked to see.

But apparently, it doesn’t matter if you have any vocal talent. It’s all about how well you perform for the camera backstage.  You must be mean, nasty, unstable and/or prone to emotional outbursts.

In fact, it was 30 minutes into Round 2 before we got to hear anyone sing.  And then again most of the time was give to those that stirred up ruckus not those that could be our contenders for the rest of the season.

It’s hard to become vested in the contestants and chose your favorites, if you don’t really get to see who the contestants are.

We were actually able to see more contestants in Round 3, but the convoluted elimination by room scenario made it hard to determine the fate of the singers we got to hear.

And why did we have an elimination in Round 3, when Round 4 is the big cut.  I know it adds another night of ad revenue for the people at Fox.  But did it offer anything for the viewers?

To top it off, we aren’t even getting our Top 24 at the end of Hollywood Week.  Instead we are only down to 36, adding a few more weeks to the Idol season and letting those drama-ridden contestants steal the focus from the singing for a little longer.

I’ve never been a fan of the audition and Hollywood phases, but this year my opinion dropped another notch.  Now let’s get on with the real show.  I want to see some singing.

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