Tuesday, March 2, 2010

American Idol Stunt Doubles

While Josh is in the land of No Left Turns, I'll handle tonight's Idol recap. It seems like all of the male contestants are just poor man's versions of prior Idol contestants. Of the 10 guys remaining, only one or two have a legitimate shot of being an actual star. The rest can only aspire to be a one-hit wonder at best.
One thing that I can't stand this year is how the judges seem to give contradictory advice. For example, they told a few singers to make the song their own, to not sing it just like the original performed sang it. Then, they tell a performer like Todrick Hall, who sings a fresh version of a song, to just hit the notes and don't worry about being different. I wish they would be consistent here.
Here's the rundown
  • Michael Lynche - Season 9's Rueben Studdard - Ryan Seacrest plays him up, calling him Big Mike. I'd have to think that this gives him some extra credibility. He has that teddy bear appearance that will get him plenty of votes. Tonight, he sang "This is a Man's World" by James Brown. I thought it was really good. He is one of my favorites among the men.
  • John Park - Season 9's John Stevens - He is a crooner, nothing more. He would be good on Broadway but I don't know if he is cut out for this competition. He sang John Mayer's "Gravity". He was better than last week but that's not saying much. He might be in trouble.
  • Casey James - Season 9's Ace Young (but with talent) - He is the most polished overall performer. Tonight he sang Gavin DeGraw's "I Don't Wanna Be". The judges were a bit hard on him but he will be safe. Whether he wins this competition or not, he will certainly have a successful album once the season is done.
  • Alex Lambert - Season 9's Kevin Covais - Sang John Legend's "Everybody Knows". There is no doubt this kid got beat up in high school. He has a decent voice but it is not good enough to hang around very long.
  • Todrick Hall - Season 9's Corey Clark - The judges seem to have it in for him. He sang Tina Turner's "What's Love Got To Do With It". I thought it was pretty solid. The judges all saw it differently. He doesn't have the best singing voice amongst the men, but he has much better onstage presence than most, if not all, of the men.
  • Jermaine Sellers -Season 9's Nikko Smith - Seems more into fashion than singing. What's with the ugly bow tie? He sang "What's Going On" by Marvin Gaye. What is going on is that he is in trouble this week.
  • Andrew Garcia - Season 9's Danny Gokey - Andrew seems to be taking a step backward each week. His version of "You Give Me Something" by James Morrisson was just disappointing.
  • Aaron Kelly - Season 9's David Archuleta (with less talent) - Sang The Temptation's "My Girl". He just looks scared to be on the stage. I wasn't impressed.
  • Tim Urban - Season 9's Kris Allen (with much, much less talent) - Sang "Come On, Get High" by Matt Nathanson. I don't know how many ways I can come up with to he say that he sucks. Unfortunately, this is an easy candidate for the Vote for the Worst crowd. As Tony Kornheiser would say, he Gots to Go.
  • Lee Dewyze - Season 9's Michael Johns - Sang Hinder's "Lips of an Angel". I could go either way on him. He seems like the contestant that will have a good week followed by a bad week but move on based on his reputation. He's safe this week.

If I had to pick two to go home this week, I'd like to see Tim and Jermaine go home. That being said, it wouldn't shock me to see John, Alex, Todrick, Andrew or Aaron go home. Only Michael, Casey and Lee are safe.


angie said...

I'll preface this comment by saying I haven't seen any of this season, but...

I don't get the complaint about how the judges aren't consistent when it comes to wanting the contestants to sing the songs straight or to make them their own. Do you like all remakes you hear? Or dislike every single remake you've ever heard?

Maybe the judges could do a much better job about explaining *why* a version worked or didn't work, but I don't think consistency is the right fix.

Josh said...

You joke but it took us 5 minutes worth of illegal u-turns on side streets to get headed in the right direction after dinner last night.

Steve said...

I am referring to judges continuing to slam Todrick Hall for making a song original while the judges continue to slam other contestants for singing a song exactly how John Mayer might sing it. You can't have it both ways. It seems like the judges either like someone or don't like someone from the start, regardless of how the performace turns out.

angie said...

Steve, I guess I didn't phrase my thoughts correctly. I understood the meaning of the words you wrote, but I was trying to say that actually yes, you CAN have it both ways. Sometimes changing things around sounds good (example: David Cook's Hello or Billie Jean) and sometimes it sounds like crap (example: Adam Lambert's Ring of Fire or Kristy Lee Cook's Eight Days a Week). Same with singing it just like the original version (too many diva songs to list as examples).

Maybe the judges should use different phrases or provide more detailed feedback, but pointing out that one attempt at a song works while an attempt at a different song doesn't is completely fair, in my opinion.

That doesn't mean, though, that I don't agree that the judges seem to have preconceived opinions of the contestants and song choices.

Elisha said...

I think I agree with both Angie and Steve... while yes, I do think the judges already know who they like and who they don't (and their comments reflect those predispositions), they don't explain WHY various adaptations/takes on songs work or don't work... they just gush or shake their heads and say, "nah, dawg, it just didn't do it for me..."