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American Idol Fodder

American Idol: Goodbye Mate!

mjohns.jpgIt's been a long week full of inspirational performances, fundraising, celebrity guest stars and Robin Williams pretending to be Russian. Maybe that's why I took tonight's elimination especially hard- I'm exhausted! Seriously, three nights of "Idol" is a lot to take in, especially since last night's star-studded extravaganza almost clocked in at three hours. So, for all you sleepy fans who just want to know what happened tonight, read on for the recap.

The night started with a long recap of "Idol Gives Back." Apparently, the show has already raised $60 million, which is not too shabby. Ryan Seacrest then gave his 400th shout-out of the week to iTunes, where fans can buy recordings of the week's performances. (Does anyone think the producers might have sold their soul to those iTunes people? That is, if anything was left after they sold their souls to Ford and Coca-Cola!) Then it was on to the group sing-along, where our Top 8 reprised their performance of "Shout To the Lord" from last night. Once again, it was pretty cool.

After a fun karaoke moment where stars like Nicole Scherzinger, Rob Schneider, Kobe Bryant, Michael Chiklis, Dr. Phil and a bunch of people I don't recognize lip-synched to "I'm a Believer," it was time for the results. First up tonight was Brooke White. When Ryan asked her why she was so emotional on Tuesday night, she said it was basically because her sister's wedding was coming up and she was going to miss it. Then she corrected herself and said: "I don't want to be presumptuous, maybe I WILL be there." After a big laugh, Ryan told her she was safe (which I guess mean's no wedding for Brooke! That's kind of harsh, don't you think? Can't Simon Cowell buy her a round-trip ticket?)

Next up was David Cook, who looked pretty worried he would land a spot on the Stools of Doom. After joking that Simon called him every name in the book, including "arrogant," Ryan countered saying that's what he calls Simon. Then Mr. Cowell, who has become more of a comedian in the last few weeks, started booing him. When did Simon start having fun? Then Ryan brought out David Archuleta, who obviously was safe. I think the mystery of the Top Two has been solved, because both Cook and Archuleta are now the only remaining contestants never to have been in the Bottom Three.

The producers decided to skip the viewer call-ins this week (oh darn!), instead playing more clips from celebrities who want you to donate your money. Tonight they showed another video from Forest Whitaker and his wife, who both went to Africa to raise awareness about malaria.

Following that was a performance from Chris Brown and last year's American Idol Jordin Sparks. I've been hearing her new song, "No Air," on the radio for weeks, so I wasn't surprised she sang it tonight. I'm not a huge fan of the song, but it's been slowly growing on me. I have to admit, though, that their duet was pretty good. And are those two dating, or are they just really good actors? Ryan capped off the performance by having the Jordin fan club present her with awards for her album going gold and for her new song hitting the top of the download charts. As Seacrest said: "See, Idol really does work."

Then it was back to the eliminations as Jason Castro came to the stage. After discussing his newfound ukulele talent, Ryan gave him the green light for the Couch of Safety. Next up to bat was Kristy Lee Cook who just earned the Sanjaya Award for sticking around way past her prime. Who is voting for this girl? I heard a news report that her hometown has been voting like crazy, but unless her hometown is the state of California, I can't imagine where she's getting the votes! This is crazy!

So if you do the math (The Top 8 minus 5 safe contestants = Bottom Three), that meant everyone who hadn't traveled to the stage was in danger of leaving. Syesha and Carly have both been here before, but this is Michael's first time and he was clearly worried.

But before we could find out their fates, the producers decided to air those "Idol Gives Back" messages from Hillary Clinton, John McCain and Barack Obama that we'd heard so much about. The two Democrats were pretty serious, while McCain tossed a immigration joke at Simon.

With no more fundraising messages or Ford music videos left to play, it was time for Ryan to reveal who was going home. As he said Carly and Syesha's names, I was so sure that Michael was going to be safe. But since when have I been able to accurately predict who was going home! Thus, it was a shocker to hear that Michael Johns was headed home. But instead of just letting him leave, Ryan started to tell him how no one had been kicked off "Idol Gives Back" last year. Everyone's spirits started to lift, including Michael's! Yay, they were going to give him a second chance! Then Ryan pulled the rug out from under him and told him that this year they were sending someone home!and it was him. That's a pretty dirty trick Seacrest. Let's hope Johns is a forgiving guy, or you might have to sleep with one eye open. Despite it all, Michael went out into the audience and sang an awesome version of "Dream On." So here's to you Michael, the Rockin Aussie whose love for Queen songs and hideous scarves will never be forgotten!

What did you think of tonight's elimination? Are you as amazed as I am that both Kristy Lee and Syesha have somehow outlasted Michael? How would you rank the Top 7? And do you think it's still possible that there will be an all-male Top 3, or is Castro just living on borrowed time? Post below and be back next Tuesday for another crazy week of "American Idol!" –Chris Sardelli

Posted by Chris on April 11, 2008 12:55 AM
Permalink |

As we have seen so many times before...American Idol has become a popularity contest...not a true talent contest. Yes, everyone has their favorites and wants them to succeed, but that is not what this show is supposed to be about. Talent people.

-- 1. Posted by: Maggie at April 11, 2008 8:25 AM

I am so disappointed Michael Johns is gone but he won't be forgotten,I really thought it was going to be Brooke or Jason or Syesha,he should not have left yet good luck Michael I'll be waiting for your first CD
one of your fans Billie

-- 2. Posted by: billie at April 11, 2008 8:29 AM

for our banished contestant, a parting Haiku:

A crock? Some might say.
But votes, down under the norm
Michael Johns, Dream On.

-- 3. Posted by: mediaboy at April 11, 2008 10:11 AM

I am surprised that Kristy has outlasted Michael, but not overly surprised that Syesha did. I don't think that Johns really started giving great performances until more recently. In the early stages, hs performances were not up to par with many of the others. I too thought that he would outlast not only Kristy, but Brooke and Jason as well. They are "pleasant" singers, but not really outstanding performers. Everything they do sounds the same from week to week. They are predictable. All in all, Michael Johns' departure might have been a few weeks premature, but I never expected him to be in the top 2 or even 3. I suspect that the top 3, in no particular order, will be David Cook, David Archuletta, and Carly Smithson.

-- 4. Posted by: Dee at April 11, 2008 10:38 AM

The music business as a whole has not been about talent in years. That's why so many good bands are playing in bars and the college circuit. Here's the reason why Michael Johns was booted, in my opinion:

1. Great talent, but what do you do with him if you're a record producer? He'll sell records, but not to the kiddie/teen marked that's so lucrative. He's a substance guy, which is the reason why he never fit with the "Up With People" style of choral songs they do every week with all the contestants.

2. David Archuleta & Brooke White: Not only is Archuleta the teen heartthrob kid, but he and Brooke are Mormons, and have that Osmond squeeky clean image, and obviously the Mormon vote. They're well insulated.

3. Kristy Lee Cook: Got the country twang, so she'll pull from the country market, plus, she's every 40 year old pervert's dream.

4. Jason Castro: Same deal- teen heartthrob + latter-day hippie chic.

5. Syesha: Great singer, but very forgettable in a crowded market for her style. Singers of her type are a dime a dozen these days.

6. Carly Smithson: Great talent, great on American Idol, but who's going to buy her shrill records? Very much older for her age (hard to believe she's only 25.) She's got too much of that Laura Branigan vibe, and probably won't sell in today's market, beyone one or two albums.

Let's face it, these artists are eye candy, first and formost. Yes they're talented, but that will always take a backseat to looks and flash.

My 2¢ worth.

-- 5. Posted by: Roger at April 11, 2008 11:26 AM

I am sure it has something to do with the vote for the worst website. They have picked Kristy Lee Cook this year. Which means we'll have another season of the worst gets bumped to 'safe seat' stardom and pushes the money makers out of the show

-- 6. Posted by: Ms at April 11, 2008 12:51 PM

Fans got it wrong ousting Michael .....even worse, there should have been no elimination after "Idol Gives Back," like last year......shame on you, Ryan Seacrest, to dangle that hope and then yank it away!

-- 7. Posted by: emeilia at April 11, 2008 12:59 PM

I am shocked that Michael Johns was voted out of the competition...Well at least not too soon...My prediction for the bottom 3 were Syesha, Jason & Brooke or Kristy...

Goodluck to the remaining 7 contestants...Vote wisely people!

-- 8. Posted by: jane at April 11, 2008 1:10 PM

I knew going in there was likely going to be a surprise in the Bottom 3. It was just time for it. I didn't, however, expect that surprise to turn into shock. While certainly not as shocking as when Daughtrey got kicked a few years ago, this was the biggest I could remember.

Now, I wasn't a huge fan of Johns. I didn't dislike him, and his Dolly song was one of the best performances this year hands down. But other than that, he kept doing songs he simply had no business doing. I found it hard too, because he was doing my style of music. I wanted to like it each week, but it always left me feeling like I just heard some dude doing karoke. Which is why I agreed with Simon when he said Micheal had to quit trying to impersonate Rock lead singers.

Anyway, I thought it was time for Syesha. Like Roger said above, her type of singer is very common, and she isn't even on par with them.

KLC is still around to my surprise. But also to my surprise she gets better every week. I'm sure her time is running out though.

So my top 7.

1. David A. - not my type of music, but I love the kid, and I think the smart money is on him.

2. David C. - definitely my type of music, and he does it very well. I'm just not convinced a Rocker will ever win this show.
3. Brooke W. - yeah I'm surprised to have her here too. I used to think Carly at this spot, but she has just gotten worse every week. Brooke is squeaky clean, and I would definitely buy an album from her. Plus I think she is consistent and solid, which has to count for something.

4. Jason C. - I like the guy alot, but he sounds about the same everytime out. He's a Jack Johnson clone in my opinion, which isn't bad at all. But if he doesn't have a string instrument in his hand he's a terrible performer.

5. Carly S. - I don't think she is the 5th best singer by any means, but I think her days are numbered. She sometimes chooses songs that simply don't fit her (Queen?) and I think just doesn't come across very good some weeks.

6. KLC - At least she has gotten better since her early lucky to survive weeks. I don't know how much longer she can keep it up, but its been pleasant seeing her improve. If Kellie Pickler can get a career in country from the show, then KLC should be able to as well.

7. Syesha - She's nice and all, but still very forgettable for me. I think she's been lucky to survive the last two weeks.

-- 9. Posted by: Andy at April 11, 2008 1:54 PM

Yeah it's surprising that neither Kristy or Syesha was the one to go home. But I guess as what Simon and Randy said the performance wasn't actually that good. But still one off night should've not sent MJ home it should really be Kristy, and yeah who's been voting for her, I mean we keep on saying she has to go home but still she's safe and we have to see her again for another week. Next week's theme will be Mariah's if Kristy still survives after that, she will be the next AI! David A. is still my vote for the next Ai, he's voice is unique, great connection with songs he performs, young and keeps his feet off the ground.

-- 10. Posted by: Elle at April 11, 2008 7:23 PM

David Cook-
You are such a great singer because you make everything your own. I think you are the next American Idol.

-- 11. Posted by: Jaz at April 11, 2008 7:25 PM

Wow! I could not even guess about it)) Not bad.

-- 12. Posted by: Benjamin at February 4, 2013 1:26 AM

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