Am I get Idol-jaded? They sent a lot of folks through to Hollywood (from basically Hollywood) tonight, the most from any city in the auditions so far. They sent through 40 people! And, with the exception of one who wasn't really a contestant at all, I wasn't all that impressed with any of the good ones shown. Yes, they can sing, but none rocked my world.
On the other hand, after last night's disappointing Odd, Los Angeles brought new blood to the American Idol Odd Squad. Guest judge Olivia Newton-John sat in on the panel and was treated to some of those audition hi-jinks we've come to love and adore… or not.
Tonight's Most Notable of the Odd
As easy as pouncing a mouse, Martik "Panther" Manoukian leaped to the top of the Odd Chart. Full of attitude, snarling, sound effects, hissing, and what tried to pass for cat-like moves, he mesmerized the judges.
He claims to have studied extensively and boasts of many talents, dreams and goals.
He can't sing a lick, so he should think of grooming himself for a new career. Hey, maybe he can team up with Ian Bernardo and be a comedy act in the dive bar circuit!
I apologize for the quality of the shot, but thought it still conveyed the very essence of Sophat and preserved it for eternity.
I actually liked Phuong. Oh, she really can't sing that well or anything as far as American Idol goes. But I enjoyed her spunk and personality. I felt sorry when she said her mother told her she wasn't "TV pretty."
Hey, she's pretty in her own way. I've noticed in the years of watching American Idol that the looks seem to matter so much more for the women than they do for the men. Oh, I wish this girl could have blown them all away with her voice. But, um… no.
Darold and Cavett (Sparkle) met at a bus stop. I wonder if it was a wet day and he shared his umbrella. The question is, does Darold have a grillfriend for life? The way she was hitting on Simon was even making Simon blush. It must be his man-boobs turning her on, right?
As things turned out, neither could sing. I guess they'll have to keep investing in their grills and sharing the love.
The closer for the show, Eric Mueller, was a true case in study for the show. He spoke with confidence. He told Ryan he studied and practiced four to five hours a day for two years in preparation for his audition debut on the show.
And, then he sang. Mind you, I'm using the word "sang" quite loosely here. It sounded a bit more like a nasal moose-in-heat call. Or, perhaps aliens have taken over his voice.
Wait, no! He taught himself to sing using Randy and Paula's DVD! Bwahaha! Simon had lots of fun with that one. But, dang, if Eric seriously thinks he can sing, that's scary. It's almost like Martik thinking he can sing.
A Very Touching Moment
His love of 20 years had suffered through cancer. They shared a love for the show. To brighten her days, he started a petition to be able to sing a song for her at the audition. It gave them both something to make them smile and a goal.
Alas, she died two days before the audition. Sherman still sang his song and dedicated it to her – "You Belong to Me." In the end he said, "I am a winner." And, he sure is. Not only that, but he didn't even sing too badly. What a dear!
In between Sherman and the Odd, there were some decent singers. But, as I mentioned at the top of the article, none really impressed me. Paula came across as quasi-loopy at times and I don't know if it's all an act or not. The judges weren't really cruel to anyone. There was a girl whose mother was one of Dean Martin's Golddiggers. They showed Ryan Seacrest's star on Hollywood Boulevard way too much. Yeah, it was Hollyweird, saved by Sherman Pore, a salt-of-the-earth kind of man.
Next, it's on to San Antonio.