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Grading the American Idol Top 10 On The Tivo Multi-Bloop Scale

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American Idol gave me exactly what I deserved. I railed against them for bringing in mentors that today’s viewers (and the Idols) could not relate to. So what do the Idol producers do? They give me Gwen Stefani Week, and not surprisingly ('cause my karma is for “S” — I could be Earl’s stand-in, truly), the show was decidedly awful.

The palette of songs to choose from is probably the culprit here. Seacrest claimed the Idols were singing either No Doubt songs, songs from the '90s, or songs that inspired Gwen. O… kay. So you brought Gwen on to rope the moderns but don’t require the Idols to only sing No Doubt or Gwen-solo songs? Why bother then? I wanna hear Haley try to gam her way through “Spiderwebs”. Or LaKisha bring it big on “Ex-Boyfriend”. “New” would have been a perfect choice for beat boxer Blake. And I would have paid green cash money to hear Sanjaya sing “Just A Girl”, even with the hair-saster.

Chris SlighThe show had no rhyme, reason, or rhythm. Songs came from out of nowhere, and the performances reflected that lack of connection. I never got a sense that the songs really mattered this week, which is surprising considering Idol shilled out for a hit-making superduperstar to mentor them in the ways of pop success.

And on the Gwen Stefani tip, she was cute as hell, but seemed to be in way over her head. Her tips to the Idols were limited to “watch out for the melody” (Lulu was better at this), she rarely had a good word to say (other than for Melinda, natch), and she’s a terrible actress, because it was beyond obvious when she hated someone (Chris Sligh).

Furthermore, how can someone so successful be so “deer in the headlights” just because she’s pulling studio time with Sanjaya? Is he that detrimental to the health of modern music? Should Gavin Rossdale put on his machinehead and destroy the kid? Can we get Sanjaya a time machine to 1996 so he can wander into Orange County and kill the evil ska trend before it gets invasive and nearly deafens a nation of grunge recovery victims?

I thought the show needed an injection of 2007, but I was wrong. Maybe Idol is better off staying an old-school karaoke contest, than it is trying to artificially paint some Top 40 on kids who aren’t ready yet (and those who never will be).

As stated before, I’ve decided to recap the show week-to-week and grade the singers on a sliding scale of how much I wanted to, or did, TiVo-bloop through the song. At the end of each recap I’ll make my pick for who should (and hopefully will) get the axe on the Wednesday night results show.

Let’s break it down, bloop bloop style!

Gina Glocksen1. Melinda Doolittle – When they opened with the wide shot of the lights going crazy and Mindy waving her hands in the air, I knew there was no chance she was getting the bloop tonight. Match that awesomeness with the kickin' flippy bob, the daring six-inch heels and the under-the-boobs beltage, and this was a package I would mail first class with insurance. No plebian ground delivery for this girl. She rocked, as per usual. And I — and the nation — loved it, as per double usual.

Gwen was right, who needs luck when you got the Doolittle? And let me add how scary this performance must have been for the rest of the Idol-wannabes. The only hope they had was that Melinda would falter on the up-tempo songs, but as she proved tonight, that ain’t happening. It’s scary how over this contest already is and there’s still eight more weeks to go.

2. Gina Glocksen – A calculated song choice error on Gina’s part. She cannot go up against Melinda and LaKisha with a ballad. She needs to toe the rocker line and get through the herd thinning with as little collision as possible. Gina does not do stand-still singing well. The arm movement was clumsy, she seemed stiff and unsure of her talent and I was not a fan of the haircut. I like her a lot, I like her voice, but I would not advise her going down this route for too much longer. A half bloop at best.

3. Chris Richardson – I grew up listening to the radio in the Valley, which for a period of time in the mid-'90s could have been called No Doubt FM, so I’ve been over “Don’t Speak” about fifteen different times. But I knew if it was No Doubt night someone had to sing “Don’t Speak”, and I was pleasantly surprised to find it was Chris R (when Gina was the obvious choice). I was even more surprised to find I really enjoyed it. This should have been a double bloop purely on principle, but I upgraded to a one bloop because I dug the R & B twinge, the ornamentation, the passion and the fact that he didn’t have the damn Hindu dot on his forehead like a certain platinum mentor who looked stupid when the song first broke and who will remain nameless (Gwen!). I think he botched the words near the end, and he didn’t have nearly as big a finish as the anchor spot requires, but that’s secondary to how flat-out nice it was to hear him sing this song and not want to gouge my ears out with a dooce-stained Q tip. I will never forgive KROQ for slobbing on the No Doubt knob so voraciously. (And they don’t even play her new music, fucking hypocrites! Go spin the new Panic song again, asses).

Haley Scarnato4. Blake Lewis – Is Blake a Cylon now? Is he hearing “All Along The Watchtower” in his dressing room? Because I’ve never seen him so boring, dreary or stalkerish (check the eyes, they had “giggity giggity” written all over them). The only explanation for this lapse was that he was too busy watching the BSG finale to put his usual spin on things. I don’t dig Blake bringing it tender. And I really don’t like him saying he’s covering The Cure when he so obviously sang the 311 version from the Sandler-in-Hawaii flick. That’s twice with the substandard '90s crap rock band. Let it go Blake. You go or we go. Double bloop this unfortunate Blake bullshit.

5. Haley Scarnato – I see someone got the “your gams are great” memo, 'cause Haley unleashed them on a sick world and instantly healed the populace. Her kaBAM was so good it’s almost an afterthought that her voice was so thin and pitchy (not to mention she nailed exactly zero of the big applause notes). For those who are watching the show for reasons that have nothing to do with the singing, you can put your TiVmote down. For those who are purists, you might be dipping into double-bloop territory. Good thing I’m of the former group. Idol needs her for the eye candy so she’s not going anywhere, despite having the second worst voice on the show (hi there Sanjaya, we’ll deal with you and your epic vertical follicle trainwreck in just a minute).

6. Phil Stacey – I see the aliens took the Phil Cylon back to the baseship and replaced him with an upgraded model — one that doesn’t suck so terribly, and has heightened suck up powers. I want to triple bloop his obnoxious audience pandering arm movement and head bops, but his voice only merits a bloop and a half. Though I did notice that the background singers stepped all over him and sounded off-key. They took away from the great mid-section of the performance and completely ruined the close. But factor in the hat, the decreased alien-ness, the “everyone loves this song so much you get points just for reminding us how much it rocks” angle, and sympathy vote for the regrettable background ornamentation mishap, and it all spells a chance for Phil to finally break out of his weekly bottom three purgatory.

LaKisha Jones7. LaKisha Jones – One bloop for the dress she sported that looked like the downside of a melted pack of Original Fruit Skittles; one bloop and a half for her tired vocal. Is it me, or did she seem out of breath for most of the middle of the song? Finally smiling rid her of most of the “bitch” vibe, and I liked the up-tempo song, but she still didn’t do enough to get me to consider buying a ticket on her bandwagon. A good first step, though.

8. Jordin Sparks – A disaster of near Malakar-ian proportions. Bad song choice (the vocal was way too low in the opening verse), horrible wardrobe choice (that skirt wasn’t just doing nothing for her, it was running all over town messing up her credit), and frustrating tempo (either speed it the hell up in true No Doubt style, or flip the script and go super slow in true Blake Lewis style, but don’t wish wash the speed). I hated hated HATED this performance. Double bloop. And she’s lucky I like her or it would be worse.

9. Chris Sligh – Aside from him being a total fucking abominable monster of arrogance and prickitude, I dig the guy. But his performance tonight sounded like Pee Wee Herman doing an above average Sting imitation. (How scary is the thought of Paul Ruebens mastering tantra? He’d be a pervert force of nature.) A forceful double-bloop for the Sligh Creature From the Idol Lagoon. When even the performer admits he botched the job, I can’t abide by anything less. I guess I was wrong about him turning a corner last week. I could very easily see him hitting the bricks tonight.

10. Sanjaya Malakar – He’s an automatic triple bloop, let’s get that out of the way. Now, to the performance… WHAT? THE? FUCK? IS? WITH? THE? HAIR? It made him look like the soulless villain in a late '80s Jean Claude Van Damme movie (and not Bloodsport). He forgot the words like Gwen said he would, he was timid and quiet even when he was on point and again, the hair? Really? REALLY? Gwen should have sacked the Harijuku Girls on this poor child. Randy and Paula are right, the only chance this kid has is to go balls out every time and appall the viewers so much that they have to vote for him out of sheer shock that someone had the balls to be so humiliating on purpose. He’s like a cast member of The Office wandered out of the Scranton branch and somehow made their way into CBS Television City.

Bottom Three: FrankenSligh, Haley Scarnato, Phil Stacey

My prediction for who gets the axe this week: FrankenSligh

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About The Jay

  • http://www.noface4film.com/ Kaonashi

    Sanjaya did forget the words! I knew it! I knew I couldn’t hear him properly during the second verse- it’s because he lowered his voice to cover up that he forgot the words. HA HA HA HA HA!!!

  • Grandpa Idol

    You are missing the Jordin “spark” because she is the other tweenie draw especially since she went modern this week. She’s smart, knows her music, and will make it farther than you think.

  • Toph

    You are completey nuts if you think Haley has the second worst voice on this show. Chris Sligh, Sanjaya, Phil, and just because Lakisha and Melinda are big voiced does not make them great singers. Melinda is just a back up singer!

  • HateIdol

    You are completely nuts if you think Haley DOESN’T have the second worst voice. The only great singers in the competition are Lakisha, Melinda, and Jordin. Get real!

  • David Lane

    Sanjia sucks, he needs to not!!!be on the show!!
    he sucks rotten ass, he looks gay and if that freak wins the show will loose many viewers!!!

  • billy bob

    jordan sparks may be young but she has a hell of a voice. and with training like dolittle she will be just as good as dolittle.

  • sanjaya

    you have got to be kidding.i can’t beleave the chicken didnt leave.the show has lost two good singers.an he is still there.this show has became a joke.you are losing people that has watch this for years.i would rather watch barney with my three year old.
    ps cut that ——- hair!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • http:www.taylorhicksblues.blogspot.com Jewels

    Everyone is underestimating my boy. This week he gave all of you “experts” the ‘What have you’. Man I love backing the Winner. Hide and watch like we say in Texas, my boy has surprises up his young sleeve.

    Man, I love to be right. Ya’ll wanns put $$ on this?

  • http://www.taylorhicksblues.blogspot.com Jewels

    Dude, I love to be right. I have to say it again. The boy did the right thing this week. HE IS the NEWS. Here is a link for anyone who has not just listened to my boy’s song this week.

  • http://googlejs Juls

    Sanjaya should have never made it to Hollywood

  • http://www.taylorhicksblues.blogspot.com Jewels

    Juls obviously he should have and – to think he might win this thing… can you deal? The boy has talent and I’m sick of the bashing.

  • http://www.taylorhicksblues.blogspot.com Jewels

    At least you were more realistic than Kaonishi, you got the bottom 3 right. Listen to the boy without looking at his hair and discounting one word he felt uncomfortable singing…left out on purpose. He sounds good.

  • bonnie and clyde

    sanjaya and haley suck and should have been gone the first week. sanjaya should have stayed home!!!!!! Melinda ROCKS!

  • http://www.noface4film.com/ Kaonashi

    Oh wow, so I didn’t predict it correctly just this one time. I shouldn’t go to Vegas since my game is off. Seriously Jewels, is Sanjaya your grandson or something? What’s with this obsession? It’s unhealthy, really. And what’s with all your comment spam with the videos to his performance? Last week you were spamming the comments with his church performance.

  • Grandpa Idol

    Calm down, I think Jewels is just doing a little emotional baiting out here in the bloggersphere because she can’t possibly be serious about Sanjaya. Right now he is a gimmick that is working well and the voters are falling for it. I would hope that as more “talented” contestants fall by the wayside that their votes will eventually overwhelm Sanjaya’s base and he will depart. I also don’t like comparisons to Jon Stevens and Scott Savol because they could actually sing.

  • Tootsie

    Grandpa idol is right,at least i hope he is. Sanjaya is a gimmick. How can anyone think the Sanjaya can sing better than Sundance Head. If that isnt for more viewers, well lets just say it will loose alot more viewers if he wins. The guy justs cannot sing

  • Music Producer

    Sanjaya???
    C’mon on man, This dude can’t even hold a note Dog!
    Im at a loss for words dog, he’s just there because of his teenie bopper fans that think he’s cute? Comon Dog! His fans wouldn’t know a real singer even if they were one man. Parrents, C’mon man these kids need to listen with there eye’s closed or somthing man! The show is about Great! Not good Singers Dog! So we all need to get real man, let’s judge these singers on there singing abilitys dog! The show might not go on if you people don’t get real man, so let’s get the show back on track man. It’s a SINGING competition dog, not a popularity or cuteness contest/show man. IT’S A SINGING COMPETITION/SHOW DOG’S!!!!!!

  • Sow Viewer

    Sanjayj???
    C’Mon man this dude can’t even hold a note dog! He’s only on the show because of his teenie bopper fans dog’s. these fans wouldnt know a real singer even if thet were one man. Parrents, have your kid’s close there eye’s when they view the show dog! we need to get real and select great singers not just good singers dog. This is a singing compitition man, not a popularity compitition dog. so lets select the great singers! you have already sent two great singers home man, Not Good man.

  • http://www.noface4film.com/ Kaonashi

    Grandpa- You are right. She is not worth getting in a huff over, and definitely neither is Sanjaya. He sure is a gimmick that AI is milking for all its worth. They know that he’s not going to win, but by jove they’re using him for the ratings.

  • cnina1234

    American Idol should take a look at what is going on. I am on the verge of stop watching the show and several of my friends also agree. This is a mockery with Sanjia. This really teaches our impressionable children a lesson doesn’t it. Many will pushed by their parents into situations that can become devasting when they are older. If AI were to change the voting format, possibly we could get rid of a lot of the foolish voting
    being done. Only 1 vote per candidate should be allowed from each phone. this too would give a more accurate account of how many of truly watching. If this farce continues, I will switch to other channels and forget about this mess.

  • beca

    omg u guys r retarded!!! i loved sanjia….but the song by arosmith was bad.

    he is cute too!