Catching up on American Idol – the top five

We’ve got some catching up to do.

Two weeks ago I was gone on vacation. Like, so gone I had no way to watch A.I. gone. Which was okay because, truth be told, I was kind of burned out on writing about this season.  It tends to happen around the midway point.  So a break was nice.

And America voted out Colton.  Presumably because he was dressed oddly.

So, last week I was back, but life was screamin’ at me to resotre balance, which I knew wouldn’t happen until last week was over.  As such, I had to just not write here, which I really enjoy doing.  So, even though I watched the show last week, I decided not to post any comments.

And American voted out Elise.  Not cool, America.  Although, given the amount of times she has been undeserving in the bottom three, my wife commented “put her out of her misery”.

So, I’m back this week to try and stop the madness before we get a final of Hollie vs. Jessica.  I would have happily swapped out those two vacant voices for the return of Elise and Colton.  But what’s done is done and we must march bravely on.

This week, the contestants got two themes: The sixties, and Brit Pop (which basically meant any song sung by someone who is English).  Little Steven was along for the ride to give some advice and bust Jimmy’s balls.  I’m okay with that.  I figure that brings us one step closer to the Springsteen week I have been waiting for.  So, taking both performances into account, here is my rank of this week’s performances from the top five:

1.  Joshua Ledet – At some point, Joshua transcended this show.  It is absolutely his competition to lose.  In fact, it doesn’t even matter whether he wins or loses the competition.  This is Joshua Ledet’s season.  He brings a brand of “Rock & Soul” that is magical.  I love that Randy Jackson evoked the memory of Terrence Trent D’arby (or TTD as the kids call him) because I have been saying all season long that I would like to hear Joshua bust out some “Wishing Well”.  He made “Ain’t Too Proud To Beg”, a well-traveled song,  thoroughly enjoyable.  And his take on “To Love Somebody” was so effortless and great…oh, man.  There’s nothing more that needs to be said.  Maybe that’s why Steven Tyler decided to hit on the backup singers !during his critique.   J-Lo’s right – don’t screw this one up, Jimmy.  Get this kid the right songs for his album.

2.  Hollie Cavanagh – I gots to call it as I sees it.  And what I saw tonight from Hollie was the second best over-all performance.  Both of her songs were solid, but her rendition of “Bleeding Love” was riveting.  The judges wanted to gush over Jessica’s performance of “You Are So Beautiful”, but this was far better than that.  And though “River Deep, Mountain High” is the biggest song ever (and one of my faves), she still managed to give it life and justice.  My problem with Hollie is that I have already dismissed her.  I think she should have gone home about three weeks ago (at least) and is now taking up space that should belong to somebody else.  And yes, she has improved dramatically the past two weeks, but is doesn’t matter because she shouldn’t be here.  It’s like Haley Reinhardt last season.  She was AWFUL for most of the season but always managed to escape elimination.  By about the top six, she started showing signs of improvement.  But she shouldn’t have been there!  And she bugged me!  And while I am not nearly as annoyed with Hollie as I was with Haley, the principle remains the same – she should be Elise or Colton.  All of that having been said, this was a great week for Hollie.

3.  Skylar Laine – Two great song choices for Skylar, this week.  “Fortunate Son” put her right in the middle of the country-rock-stomp wheelhouse that serves her well.  She is so entertaining to watch.  And “You Don’t Have To Say You Love Me” was tremendous.  Another one of my favorites, she performed it beautifully.  She even made the human props on stage work for her during the performance.   I don’t have anything bad to say about Skylar.  Like Joshua, she is going to be a big star following this competition, win or lose.

4.  Jessica Sanchez – Yawn.  Her voice continues to be unmistakably great while her personality continues to remain unmistakably absent.  Seriously.  Thank you, Randy, for being the voice of reason following “Proud Mary”, commenting on her inability to convey emotion in the song.  Hollie used to get beaten over the head for not communicating emotion.  Jessica seems to be celebrated for it.  “You Are So Beautiful” seemed so ordinary to me, but the judges were somehow captivated.  By what?  The emptiness behind her eyes?  There was no connection to this song for Jessica.  When Joe Cocker sings this song, he makes me believe that he thinks I am beautiful.  I did not believe that Jessica thinks I am beautiful.  And I AM beautiful, Jessica!  Oh, yes.  I am.

5.  Phillip Phillips – This was better than last week, but I still feel a little like Phillip has been mailing it in lately.  His reworking of “The Letter” was actually really solid, BUT – this song should never be reworked.  It is two and half minutes of pop-rock perfection.  Some songs are just untouchable, and this is one of them, right down to the airplane sound during the equally vital outro melody.  That hurt Phillip.  And his second song, “Time of the Season”, came off as awkward (By the way – spelling the word “awkward” is, in and of itself, awkward.  That extra “w” after the first “a” just looks and feels wrong.  Typing it feels…awkward.  Just sayin’).  However, this kid is starting to seem untouchable.  He has never been in the bottom three, even though there have been a couple of weeks where he surely earned it.  But back to back mediocre performances when the numbers are dwindling may yet cost him.

So, there ya go!  In a perfect world, either Jessica or Hollie would go home this week.  In a just world, it would be Hollie.  I’m not sure it will be either one of them.  But we’ll see.  Meet you back here tomorrow night!



~ by themattmorrisshow on May 3, 2012.

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