Wednesday, March 11, 2009

American Idol- Top 13 Results

The first results show has aired and the only real surprise to me is that the "twist" will not be a season-long series of elimination sing-offs for the Final 2 a la Britain's X-Factor, but instead some sort of semi-complex judges' veto that can only be used once this season. If America decides to vote off a contestant between now and the Top 5, the judges have to decide unanimously to save them, and then a double elimination would have to occur the next week. Some examples of previous "shock elimination" from seasons past were given, but two of them were sort of pointless in being mentioned, since they occurred after the Top 5 round and thus would not even apply.

There are pros and cons to this new feature, both relative to past seasons and the alternative hypothesis put out there on bottom two sing-offs, but all in all, this seems to be a lot of hoopla over something that is only going to be used once, and perhaps only because the judges will feel deprived if they do not get to exercise this power.

But no surprise at all that it was not invoked this evening, as even though I did not have the two eliminees (I am making up this word) ranked in my bottom two, it's hard to see how they ever could have won this competition and while they may be sad to see their time in the Mansion end, it was time for them to be serenaded in a video tribute to the new version of Motley Crue's "Home Sweet Home" by Idol favorite Carrie Underwood.

Who should have gone home: Megan Joy Corkrey and Scott MacIntyre

Who I predicted would go home: Jasmine Murray and Michael Sarver

Who did go home: Jasmine Murray and Jorge Nunez

While I do not think Jasmine and Jorge deserved to be in the Finals, I thought they did fairly decently last night, perhaps more than the judges. I do not know what it was that got me feeling so generously towards Jorge though, because under the pressure of singing for his life tonight, I found it a lot worse.

Frankly though, after looking at Dial Idol, I am just very relieved that Allison Iraheta was saved, as were some of my other early favorites such as Anoop Desai, Alexis Grace, and Kris Allen. Also, even though I had Jorge ranked slightly above Lil Rounds last night for some reason, I could not imagine seeing her lose out this early in the competition either.

As for those who are leaving, I did correctly call Jasmine, who was lucky to become what I believe was the 13th person placed in the Finals (although the show wants people to believe it was done for Anoop... yeah right) perhaps because she would be just the second teenager and perhaps because of the racial diversity factor, but the ride is over for Jasmine. I hope she has enjoyed the experience and will find success in some field. She certainly has the look and the professionalism to make herself more famous than she is already.

While I knew Jorge was in danger, I did incorrectly predict it would be Michael Sarver that would be voted off. There is always that one contestant who seems to persevere week after week. Maybe its the Texas thing, but Sarver isn't going anywhere yet. Jorge is though, as I first speculated last week, but of course backed off on officially last night. I guess he was only able to do the crying thing once. Hopefully he will get a great reception back home in Puerto Rico and perhaps be honored by the commonwealth's new Republican Governor.

It is worth noting that we really do not know the full results or who the third person in the bottom three was. Those words were never used, although Anoop was left to sweat it out for much of the last half of the show with Jorge. I was thinking that perhaps the two would have to compete in an Eyebrow Off. But American Idol is still wanting the casual viewer to think that instead of having one of the largest fan bases already, Anoop is some sort of lucky fluke who keeps being given another chance. That is really the ultimate in non-pimping and it could be designed to set up a story line about how "improved" he will get as the show goes on. I really wonder though if he sees that or considers it as a theory or if he really thinks they may have it out for him. They have really been putting him through his paces the last several weeks. For him though, there may still be a lucrative payoff in the end, if he is able to step up his game. I have yet to see the movie, but aren't there similiarites to what the dude in Slumdog Millionaire had to go through?

Looking at this from a political and demographic perspective, these eliminations might help Lil Rounds to an extent, as she is now the only remaining African-American contestant (although Jasmine's style was never exactly urban or R&B) and also Allison Iraheta because she is now the only teenager left for those youngsters who like to show some age solidarity with their voting as well as the only person of Hispanic heritage. Last season in the Finals, David Archuleta was the only teenager, but one of several with a Latin American family background.

If they mentioned next week's theme, I did not catch it. I know that a Grand Ole Opry Week as well as a Motown week are due this season. After Michael Jackson week, I think the country theme would be more likely next week, but it could be something different all together. The theme will obviously play a big part in how the remaining 11 do and who will go home. Michael, Scott, Megan, and Kris will probably be the ones with the most on the line though to start off.