Wednesday, March 04, 2009

American Idol Group 3 Results and Wildcard Show Reveal

Firstly, best wishes to Former First Lady Barbara Bush and family, as she recovers from some heart surgery. Also, I just saw that comedian Robin Williams may be having a heart-related issue as well, so hopefully he will be ok too.

On to Group 3:

Who should have advanced: Lil Rounds, Scott MacIntyre, Kendall Beard

Who I predicted would advance: Lil Rounds, Scott MacIntyre, Felicia Barton

Who did advance: Lil Rounds, Scott MacIntyre, Jorge Nunez

So, like for Group 1, I went two out of three in my predictions and 7 out of 9 for all three groups. I think all seven of the Finalists rightfully earned their spot, but the other two were sort of head-scratchers for me.

Lil and Scott were pretty easy to predict though, so not much more needs to be said about those results.

As for the third prediction, I was a little surprised after I did my write- up last night to show that Dial Idol was showing a tough race, but with Ju'Not Joyner holding a narrow lead over Jorge. Indeed those two were the last ones called out from the group to be given a spot and once again, just one female made it through this week. That's a bit of a disappointment to me as I thought that four of the females were better than any male this week.

It's easy to be happy for someone like Jorge, but I still do not get the love for him. Why do people even think he is adorable? I could not even see him making it into Menudo. Obviously, the Puerto Rico vote must have been allowed and that ethnic identity helped him through. Assuming it really did come down to Jorge and Ju'Not, I think Ju'Not was probably denied the spot because a lot of African-Americans would have voted for Lil. Overall, it is becoming a lot more difficult for African-American males to do well on Idol.

But back to Jorge, the main factor had to have been the crying. Like Hillary Clinton before the New Hampshire primary, Jorge shed some tears and I guess people ate that up. I have a hunch he might be the first one voted off in the Top 12 though. In a political sense, it might be a little problematic for him to have spoken tonight about Puerto Rico as his "country." Some people may be wondering why he should be the *American* Idol then. Apparently, Jorge would symphatize more with the Puerto Rico Independence Party or the PPD which favors continuing the island's Commonwealth status, rather than the pro-statehood PNP, but I am the only person in America to even consider this in any way.

The whole Wildcard reveal portion of the show was maybe even more dramatic. It turns out that just eight singers will get a chance tomorrow and I have to wonder if the three that will wind up going through (barring a twist like a Top 13 or Top 14 this year) have already been basically decided on. I would not have personally put through almost all of the eight that got invites, if that was the limit on people who would be brought back, but there were no huge shockers in who was given another chance by the judges. Of course, the most obvious bring-back, Anoop Desai, was saved for very last, which must have really had his fans worried, even though the wildcard rules apparently guaranteed him a spot anyway.

It was really interesting though to see how there was even a pre-wildcard round.. round, with several contestants from Groups 1 and 2 up in the balcony. It was hard to scan them all at first but I was sort of surprised to see Matt Brietzke up there. Of course, since Group 3 was already in town, they were invited up as well to take part in the facade that they still may have a shot.

In order to tie this all up neatly, I am going to make brief mention of the names of all the Season Eight Semifinalists whose journey is now apparently over... for good.

These people must have been informed by telephone that they need not return to Hollywood and there were no cameras there to record the tears:

From Group 1: Casey Carlson, Stevie Wright, Anne Marie Boskovich, Stephen Fowler
From Group 2: Jeanine Vailes, Mishavonna Henson, Kai Kalama

And now for those who were brought back to the studio, only to once again be crushed, assuming they did not already know that all they were getting out of the deal was another trip and a lot of Coca-Cola products:

From Group 1: Brent Keith, Jackie Tohn
From Group 2: Nick Mitchell, Matt Brietzke

For the really sad folks in Group 3 who had to face rejection twice in the same night, say goodbye to: Alex Wagner-Trugman, Taylor Vaifanua, Ariana Afsar, Ju'Not Joyner, Nathaniel Marshall, Felicia Barton, Kristen McNamara, Kendall Beard.

With Jorge making it through, this does have to be especially hard for Ju'Not to not have any other chances, as well as Kristen and Kendall, who I certainly thought were deserving of another chance.

But the snub that might get the most outrage out in the Idol fandom is probably going to be that of Felicia Barton. I think she has a lot of talent and did pretty well last night (better the second time I heard it) and a lot of her fans probably thought that she was either going to be voted in from last night or at least be brought back for the wild card show. But that's it. It's all over for her once again, just like it seemed to be when the judges/producers kept her out of the Top 36 to begin with. Maybe the show just though they already had enough church folk.

Of course tomorrow night we will see performances by four guys and four girls, with only three making it thru. I will rank their performances tomorrow evening, but it will be impossible to make formal predictions because the judges are going to announce the lucky three at the end of the show.

Since there are only 3 females with guaranteed spots in the Finals (unlike Seasons 3 and 6, the last two years have seen the guys be far more popular overall), I am positive that at least one Final selection from the wildcard show will be female. That would make the split 8-4, but the producers probably want to have a rationale to pick two ladies tomorrow night to make it 7-5.

So, before I see them sing again, who do I think has the best chances?

If there is one male slot from the wildcard show, I would seriously think that Anoop Desai has it in the bag barring an epic meltdown tomorrow. He would add some ethnic/religious diversity to the Finals and the Powers That Be clearly are aware of his large fan base and the fact that he just very narrowly lost out to Michael Sarver in his first shot.

As for the other guys, Von Smith will be singing (and he also sounded a little better to me the second time I heard the performance), but I really think he has an almost impossible task to advance. If either Ricky Braddy or Matt Giraud have a very good to great performance, they would be likely to get a spot in the Finals. Matt would probably be the preference though of those who put the show together.

When it comes to the ladies, one spot will go to either Megan Corkrey, Jasmine Murray, Jesse Langseth (modest surprise that she was not "too cool for school" to be invited back), or the infamous Tatiana Del Toro.

While Jasmine probably has the most commercial appeal out of any of them, she also will probably be on tomorrow night because of the diversity factor. Megan and Jesse sort of appeal to the same sort of fans so I think only one of them could possibly make it and assuming it is not a sing-off slaughter in favor of Jesse, Megan probably has the best chance of being the chosen one (I don't really get her vocally).

Idol would probably most like to find a way to get Tatiana into the Final 12 though in order to generate some hysterics and drama in the new Idol Mansion. She would though be the second Puerto Rican and third Hispanic in the Top 12.

So, to summarize, if I had to guess; Anoop will be in, and then it could be any two of the others, except two more males together, and except Jesse and Megan both, and oh, except Von.

That make sense?