Going into tonight’s results show for American Idol, there were only five nervous singers standing on the stage. But now one of them has gone — off to pursue a week of interviews with Ellen and Entertainment Weekly and Jimmy Kimmel. It’s a tough way to go, and after coming so far, it must be heartbreaking to– oh what am I babbling about? Do I really care what happens to these people post-Idol? Not really. Let’s just get on with it.Tonight’s show opens with Ryan Seacrest looking more beanpole-ish than usual. Maybe he got a haircut. Or maybe he’s wearing a smaller suit. Or maybe he just shed ten pounds since last night. Whatever the reason, he looks like a little ferret on stage. Or maybe prairie dog. Just imagine a small, skittish little creature: that’s Seacrest.
After Ryan welcomes us to the show and brags about the 45 million votes cast, we then see Carmen Electra in the crowd, clapping away as if she has any idea about what’s going on around her. Then we see that other loopy lady of the room: Paula Abdul. Her hair is back to its floppy state, and plus, she looks like she’s fashioned her top out of an oversized poinsettia flower.
Dare I say that Paula for one brief moment actually looks nice?
Then it’s onto the contestants. Surprisingly, Paris seems to be sporting a bright red outfit just like Paula’s, but upon closer inspection, we see that Princess Pea’s top is speckled with annoying white polka dots. It’s amazing how annoying she is down to the very last detail.
Ryan then questions the kids about all sorts of dumb things: is the pressure getting to you? How has the competition changed? I don’t particularly care what anyone has to say, but I do perk up when Elliot reveals that he sees himself standing in a pool of his own sweat at the Kodak Theater. A beautiful image. Now all of America has nightmares.
When this inquisition ends, Ryan ushers the kids onto the stage. Why? Because they’re gonna have a big singalong! Yay! I wonder what they’ll sing? Maybe “Bad Day” by Daniel Powter? I’m concerned that it just doesn’t get played enough of Idol these days.
Actually, there’s only one song worse than “Bad Day,” and it’s called “Together We Are One.” If the name alone isn’t already causing you to vomit into the nearest receptacle, then you’re one of the lucky ones. This song is horrendous. I’m not sure if it’s playing on some corner of the radio universe, but I’m fairly certain that it’s an Idol original. It is AWFUL. TERRIBLE. HIDEOUS. Marlee Matlin is the luckiest woman on Earth right now.
The tune starts off sounding vaguely like a wartime anthem, like “We Are The World” or “Voices That Care”, but then it veers into Christian Rock territory before settling into one big generic pile of poop. It makes me want to punch something. Someone. Whoever wrote it should be thrown into a volcano. And just when it couldn’t get any more sappy or ridiculous, in walks the gospel choir to force some rah-rah-rah emotion onto us.
You know, people wonder why so many of the idols have never made it big (with Kelly Clarkson being the exception). Well, here’s the reason why. They come up with simply awful songs. I don’t know how a show that prides itself on finding such great talent can have any legitimacy if it’s incapable of producing one memorable tune. The producers spend weeks and weeks and weeks looking for the best singer, and yet they can’t devote more than five minutes to pen a song that even speaks to the current pop landscape. The little ditties we hear on The Apprentice are better than this dreck. That Arby’s jingle? It sounds like “Sergeant Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band” compared to this. On the plus side, imagine how much worse we’d be off if Bucky, Kellie, and Ace were still around?
Finally, this assault on our ears ends, and we see Melissa Gilbert clapping along in the audience. Standing behind her is Mr. Justin Guarini — who I always have to mention has a surprisingly firm (er, painful, actually) handshake. Sadly for him, his fifteen minutes have long since faded, and the producers don’t even bother giving him a title card (neither now or later in the show when the cameras pass him again).
It’s time for a commercial break, and when we return, we get to see the ridiculous Ford Fusion commercial of the week. This time, it’s a take on “Hollywood Swinging,” and yes, once again, it all takes place on a stupid city set. We see the top five huddled in a Ford, driving past the intersection of Holly and Weird (Hollyweird, get it?), and ogling at all the crazy people on the streets around them. And hey, there’s that dog they were chasing last week during the Blondie song! By the way — no surprise here. Elliot’s stuck riding bitch. Good thing Mandisa’s not around anymore. They’d have to tie her up to the ski-rack on the roof. Okay, that was cruel. But you know you were all thinking it.
At the end of the commercial, our group steps out of the car, and guess what? They’re just as weird as all the other people they’ve been staring at! Amazing! And talk about costumes. Holy McPheever! Breasts and curves bulging everywhere. And Paris! The hair! The HAIR! And finally, there’s Taylor who’s dressed in shoulder pads and some neo-Raiders Nation garb. It’s bizarre and surreal and thankfully over very quickly.
Back on the live show, Ryan tells Paula that the fans thought she was the best this week. Which fans were those? And furthermore, who is that guy with the goofy smile sitting behind the judges. He’s really been distracting me.
Anyway, Ryan then recaps last night’s show and then it’s off to another commercial. When we return, our intrepid host announces that a private jet is ready to whisk the final four off to Graceland where they’ll prepare for next week’s Elvis spectacular, along with the help of record mogul and former Mariah hubby, Tommy Mottola. I really don’t know if I can deal with a whole hour of Elvis, but I guess we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it. I highly doubt anyone will sing my favorite Elvis song, “Blue Christmas,” but we can always hope. Okay, we really can’t. My wishes are screwed.
Okay, time to screw with the idols. Ryan says he’s looking for the bottom two. Taylor and Chris are both safe. But what about Paris? No surprise here. She’s in the bottom. Before we can find out who’ll be joining her, Ryan then makes her sing “Kiss” again. I take that as my cue to his the fast forward button. Meanwhile, Katharine and Elliot look absolutely petrified. The McPhee seems like she may have just witnessed a murder. There’s nothing for her to worry about though. When we return from the break, we learn that she’s safe, which means the bottom two are Paris and Elliot. Now Elliot sings, and I fast forward again (pausing only to see Paula’s drug-induced seat dancing).
And now the showdown. The person going home tonight is… Paris! Haha. Knew it. Looks like somebody ran out of God’s favor. Well, we know what this means. Cue up the Daniel Powter montage!
“‘Cause you had a bad day / you’re taking one down / you blah blah blah’d and you blah blah blaaaah / you had a bad day / I really do suck / this song is the worst / I wish it would go awaaay.”
Au Revoir, Paris!
And that was that. Paris is surprisingly sans tears, and as the show comes to a close, Ryan hands her the microphone and has her sing “Be Without You” one last time. Ever the machine of mercy, my Tivo abruptly cuts away at this time, thus sparing me more time with the gifted but annoying moppet.
What did you think? Happy with the outcome? Who’s next?