Tuesday, May 20, 2008

American Idol: David Archuleta vs. David Cook

I have decided I am going to delay a comprehensive review of what went down on tonight's American Idol. I would like an opportunity to wait until after the finale and analyze what the results were, as well as a more in depth review of the song performances. I may not be able to get around to that until Sunday so I hope the four of you who may care what I have to say will check back in the days ahead to read that when it is posted. For now, I just will make a few comments on how I viewed what happened tonight and make a prediction as to who will win.

When Syesha Mercado was eliminated, the producers and those associated with American Idol certainly got their wish of seeing the two Davids prepare to square off mano a mano, and a finale that many Idol watchers had predicted would come to pass weeks and weeks ago was finally at hand.

Going into tonight, I firmly expected David Cook to wind up as the winner of this season of American Idol. I thought that the Powers That Be were heavily invested in such a result as they see him as more of a money-making vehicle in the short term.

Based on comments to the media made and talk shows made by those associated with the show, the songs that both contestants were given to sing, and what was leaked, and some other factors, certainly including one contestant's age, the notorious reputation of one relative, and what the American Idol "punditry" and assorted internet and media know-it alls were saying about his "maturity level", I fully expected there to be a space under a bus tonight with reserved for a Mr. David Archuleta.

Man, did I call that one wrong! Be it an example of a bit of some AI fakery meant to deceive people as to whom the true "Chosen One" was in order to set the expectations, or because someone was just able to bring it tonight and rise to the occasion, or most likely a combination of the two factors, tonight did not develop in a way that most expected to. For good or bad, American Idol is as political as any election I will ever discuss on this blog

Personally, I am cool with both Davids and would normally not really care who wins. Every season of American Idol though, I have correctly predicted the winner (not too difficult of a feat in most seasons) right after the finale. Additionally, the person I have wanted to win going in has won every year, except for when Carrie defeated Bo, but that season, I was certainly able to recognize she outperformed him in the finale.

I will get into this in more detail in my next and final 2008 American Idol post and will be able to discuss the result, but basically, the criticisms that David Archuleta has gotten, and the way that various people in the media and internet have gone about it, absolutely made me want him to win. I was prepared to go on a whole rant as to how Cook vs. Archuleta represented McCain vs. Romney in several ways and how I wanted Archie to win as a bit of redemption in a sense. However, after comments made by the judges tonight, particularly one, I think a lot of the complaining I was planning to do is now inoperable.

I do not think there was a perfect vocal in any of the six performed tonight, and I certainly do not think there was a bad one either. Overshadowing that to an extent though might have just been the drama of the competition. American Idol is such a cheesy show and a guilty pleasure, that combines aspects of three of my favorite things; music, sports, and politics, the whole competitive thing was really interesting tonight and with all the boxing analogies the show used, it felt a bit like a Rocky Balboa story when all was said and done.

So again, expect much more in depth analysis of the vocals and the rest next time, (even though I know nothing about singing), but after all the lucky coin tosses, and the song choices, and the post song "visits", here is how I judged tonight's three rounds based on vocals alone.

Round 1- Cook, by a little

Round 2- Archuleta, by a mile

Round 3- Archuleta, by a little

So, I would give the edge to David Archuleta just based on the singing alone, but with the big stage, and all the atmospherics associated with what will motivate people to spend four hours dialing a phone or texting their fingers off, intangibles certainly matter, the emotional impact of the songs probably matter more than every note being spot on, etc. etc., and in that regard, it was Archuleta by a landslide.

Again, going into tonight, I really assumed that Cook would be tough to be defeated, and he may very well still win. I think it will be close, but my finale night prediction is that David Archuleta will win American Idol tomorrow night. Even if he does not (as I look at the current Dial Idol projections), I think he was able to rise to the occasion tonight, with what came across in as much of a competitive fighting will to win as being stellar vocally, and in that regard, it was a job well done.

Whomever is doused in confetti tomorrow night, I think both Davids are likely to cry so much that Ramiele Mulubay, Brooke White, and Carly Smithson wonder why they are such saps.


At 10:38 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I want Cook to win. He deserves it and was original all the way through to the end. I thought David A would have gotten a bit of criticism for re-signing Imagine.

I don't think the "rounds" were anywhere as far off as the judges made it sound. They had their mind up that there was more money to be made from David A. win than DC.

I think they shouldn't even allow the judges to speak in that last show. Their comments sway votes in a big way.

I hope DC wins but I think its gonna be AC...

At 8:31 AM, Blogger Alexis Jacobs said...

I think both are very talented and really in the end they both will do well in their own markets. That being said, I want David Cook to win. To me this show is about progression. Who is the next American Idol. Who has worked the hardest to earn that title and changed the most. David A came in sounding amazing. David C has earned his 2nd place spot.

I am still crossing my fingers that Cook will be the one getting sprayed with confetti as he sing the cheesy, but yet I liked it, American Idol song.

At 9:26 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Conservative Democrat

Corey, after last night's show, I think Syesha's voters will come to Archuleta's camp.

Archuleta will make history as:

1. The 2nd teenager (following Jordin Sparks) to win the Idol crown and keeping it in the West.

2. Archuleta will be the first Latino to win it ever.

3. Simon even called it for Archuleta last night based on winning all 3 rounds.

Round 1-Archuleta
Round 2-Archuleta
Round 3-Archuleta

Alexis, I think the Idol cronies will NEVER let a Rocker win the Idol crown period.


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