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.