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American Idol Fodder

American Idol: Taylor Takes it All

taylor-purple.jpgSettle in, kids. This was a long one...

The show kicked off with Carrie Underwood, who was great to see. Then Taylor and Katherine appeared, followed by the rest of the finalists. I couldn't help but wonder if Carrie was bummed that she wasn't quite finished with those horrible "group" sing-alongs that "AI" has become so famous for. She won two Country Music Awards last night for chrissakes. Instead of celebrating, she is taking part in one of the cheesiest moments in TV history (and the white outfits contributed to that moment).

The judges also got special intros. I rather enjoyed Randy's retrospective. They could just play that tape instead of having the real Randy next year. Paula's intro was spot on too, and just proves that no matter what people think of her, the show just wouldn't be the same without her mental breakdowns. Simon's intro looked like it was put together by Seacrest; I am convinced that there is some love going on there.

Paris kicked off the performances, with a little help from Al Jarreau. They sounded decent, but seemed like kind of an odd couple; it looked like she was singing with her grandpa. My second thought was that most people wouldn't know Al Jarreau, and I was correct according to Fox's "AI" message boards. Maybe that's why she yelled out his name. Did they think she had some type of Tourette's?

Next up was Chris performing with Live. I have to say that Chris kind of smoked Ed Kowalczyk. Their "separated-at-birth" routine, however, just scared the hell out of me.

Keeping up with this season's schtick, Kellie Pickler got her own segment with Wolfgang Puck -- which, sadly, kept reappearing. Her new 'do is adorable, but the segments were horrible. This is why the show was two hours?

Pickler got no song. They needed to get to Meatloaf immediately before he dropped or came to his senses -- whichever came first. I don't think the Meat has gotten that much props since "Bat Out of Hell" first came out. He sang a very dramatic, very theatrical song with Katherine McPhee. He seemed a little off-key. Maybe he was distracted by Kat's boobs. I know I was. It looked like one of those things was going to come flying out at any second. Despite the boobs, the song forced my husband to leave the room. I think that really says something.

More filler came in the form of The Golden Idols. As if the many weeks of auditions weren't enough, we needed a recap. It was amusing, but the funniest part was how the first "winner" wasn't present. My guess is that she wasn't offered tickets. For the men, Dave Hoover got the kudos. You might remember him. He was the guy that made it past the audition phase and really had no business being there. When he ran out on stage, I had to wonder if he was dismissed or if the judges got some type of restraining order. Nice 15 minutes, buddy. I will say: This was his best performance yet; after all, he fell off stage.

The guys got their own group segment, and having Ace kicking off "Takin' Care of Business" might have been a low point in "Idol" finales all over the world. Wait -- we have another contender in Kevin Covais. And -- like we all didn't know it would happen at some point -- Taylor got to bust out his harmonica. He actually sounded great. I wish he got a few more minutes. I wouldn't have minded less of that medley that ended with Fleetwood Mac's most overplayed anthem, "Don't Stop."

Each of the finalists got convertible Mustangs. I didn't need to see that. One thing I was happy to see: Elliot performing again. However, I didn't think "One" was the best song for him. And for a split second there, I was convinced that Bono was coming out. Shame on me!

Carrie Underwood came out to perform her single, "Jesus Take the Wheel." She reminded everyone exactly why she won last year -- she was excellent.

Taylor came out again to sing "In the Ghetto" with Toni Braxton. She looked hot, but her mic sounded like it was breaking up. Also, I just kept waiting for Joe Cocker to come out and do a duet with Taylor. I can dream, right?

By the time the girls had their group song, I was feeling a bit drained. I thought they actually did better than the guys, but it was just too many ranges coming together semi-poorly. Aside from Katherine, it seemed like Paris, Lisa and Mandisa got a little extra solo time. Pickler had her segments with Puck, and I guess Melissa got shafted.

The moment of the show (aside from announcing the winner) had to be the "tale of two Clays" -- bad Clay vs. good Clay. The "real" Clay sounded awesome. His hair, however, was not that awesome. Who is his barber -- Moe from The Three Stooges? It was good to see him though, especially if it meant quieting down the other guy. He seemed like a bit like a stalker.

During Burt Bacharach, everyone brought out his or her prom gear to sing with the man. I think they all actually did a decent job. It was probably the best group sing-along of the night. However, I am going to need that mind-erasing procedure that Arnold Schwarzenegger had in "Total Recall" to wipe Kevin Covais' singing "What's New Pussycat?" from my memory. Dionne Warwick saved the whole segment; that lady can still belt it out. Plus, I see an Elliot Yamin/Burt Bacharach tour somewhere in the future.

Also, in case you missed it -- there was an Elliot/Taylor moment there during "That's What Friends Are For." Apparently, the two have become buddies. Now we have the moment to prove it!

The cowboys were a bit much I think. It was funny the first time, but just weird that they would give those guys a lot of screen time after not making it past the group auditions. Instead they could have been giving more screen time to special guest star Prince. I thought he sounded great, but I was just a little disappointed that he was even there. Don't get me wrong: The guy is a serious performer. However, after all of the hype, it just made me think he was even more of a jackass -- and I didn't think that was humanly possible.

Sorry to sound bitter, but it was at this point in the show where I realized that we were going to have another "rip-the-Band-Aid-off" type of elimination. This drove me crazy all season, and at one hour and 55 minutes into show, I was ready to get down to business and give the winner (and loser) their due.

But of course, we needed one more song. Taylor and Katherine came out to do a duet. Time was ticking away so fast, I was expecting them to just bring out a big hook and the person left standing would be the winner.

Just like the show, I have rambled. And like the show, I am wrapping it up quickly: Taylor won, and it was no surprise. Well, it sort of was. The guy wasn't exactly the picture-perfect candidate, but in case you forgot, he was never called to the bottom during the many weeks of performances. That really says something. That Soul Patrol must pack some numbers! -- Rachel Cericola


Posted by Rachel Cericola on May 24, 2006 8:27 PM
Permalink |






Let me slide into my purple velvet jacket and say one thing:


WOOOOOOOOOOOO!

-- 1. Posted by: mac at May 24, 2006 10:22 PM

Justice has been done!

The Soul Patrol just ran over the McPhever...

Maybe he aint got the voice or looks of Kat, but oh boy does he got some serious mojo. Great performer.

Dont get me wrong, I love Kat and all her sweetness, shes gorgeous and should have and equally if not bigger carrer.

-- 2. Posted by: djjoeycool at May 25, 2006 11:06 AM

Hey...you are so wrong. Your opinion is just that. Here's mine: Carrie Underwood put me to sleep, Kevin's "What's New Pussycat" was the BOMB...he is so adorable, I had to squeeze his cheeks thru my plasma screen. Dionne, God love her, is way over the hill. Forget the high notes she can't hit anymore. The night belonged to Clay, Kevin and Elliott and with that I bid you a fond "later."

-- 3. Posted by: maria at May 26, 2006 12:14 AM

Katherine Mcphee should have won american idol.

-- 4. Posted by: Anonymous at June 18, 2006 9:57 PM

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