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Pink-Haired Amy Gets ‘Idol’ Pink Slip
LOS ANGELES ( – “Last night the Top 10 ‘American Idol’ Finalists showed why they all deserved a place on our stage,” the “Idol” announcer declaims boldly, as Wednesday night’s (March 31) results show begins.
Um, Mr. Disembodied Voice, I don’t mean to nitpick, but the only people who consistently showed they belonged on the “Idol” stage for Motown Night (March 30) were the backup band, the Funk Brothers. Others showed that they can’t yet sing and dance at the same time (like Camile Velasco) or that they can’t yet carry a conventional tune (poor John Stevens) or that they can’t ever hope to be heard above their musical accompaniment (sheepish Jon Peter Lewis).
This isn’t to say that the frontrunners — the LaToya Londons, Fantasia Barrinos and George Huffs — didn’t show why they deserve a place on the stage, but even if 20 million votes were cast, the show was far from an unqualified success.
The recap of Tuesday night’s show confirms that fact and also allows for one more chance to gawk in awe at guest judge Nick Ashford’s hypnotically grotesque hair process.
The 10 Finalists then follow with an equally hypnotically grotesque take on the Ashford & Simpson classic “Ain’t No Mountain.” The remaining seven gregarious women sound great and even seem capable of throwing in some rudimentary dance moves. The three guys look embarrassed. It’s like a junior high dance where the girls are perfectly content to dance together in packs and the boys are too shy to do anything more than stand in the corner whispering. Certainly neither Jon nor John contributes much more than a whisper.
After the usual shout-out to Ford and its diverse array of “Idol”-lovin’ driving machines, host Ryan Seacrest returns to pull the Bottom Three. As you may have heard through the grapevine, Fantasia continues to ripen. A legion of teenage girls refuse to break this old heart of Jon-Boy’s, keeping him safe for another week. Jasmine Trias proves that the support of the nation is all she needs to get by. George ain’t too proud to beg for votes and the voters ain’t too proud to comply. While Amy Adams may have been dancing in the streets, America leaves her dancing to an ignominious position at center stage. Similarly, voters give Jennifer Hudson the cold shoulder when what she craved was a heatwave.
Diana DeGarmo asked viewers “Do You Love Me?” and enough of them replied that they do. She’s safe. Camile, nearly voted out last week and mediocre last night, seems to be in trouble, but she discovers that for once in her life she’s got someone who needs her. That leaves John and LaToya waiting through a commercial break for the last spot in the Bottom Three.
First, though, the “Idol” Finalists take to the desert in their Ford automobiles, scaring the cacti and Joshua Trees as they ramble through “Life is a Highway,” by everybody’s favorite Manitoba-born “Idol,” Tom Cochrane. Where have you gone, Tom Cochrane? We haven’t thought of you since 1991 and this is how you want us to remember you?
The showdown between LaToya and John should be a simple enough choice, right? Surely John must have scared off at least a few of his fans by delivering an entire song flat, right? Wrong. After ads explaining that, like Ford, Toyota also produces a diverse array of “Idol”-lovin’ driving machines, we discover that John is actually safe.
Amy, Jennifer and LaToya stand together as the crowd gasps and boos. John looks frustrated, agog and mournful.
Ryan turns to the judges. First he asks Paula if what she sees before her is the correct Bottom Three.
“Nope,” Paula declares, shaking her head so wildly it threatens to swivel on its axis like the “Trainspotting” baby.
Ryan puts Randy on the spot and asks how many of the contestants don’t belong in the Bottom Three.
“At least two of them,” Randy says without hesitation.
Ryan, following the train of thought, challenges Simon on which two don’t belong. The British judge isn’t playing.
“Let America vote, you live with the decision,” he rationalizes.
Every week on “American Idol” there are one or two baffling moments that make you wonder what the voters were watching and what they think the point of the show is. I’m not sure, though, that I can recall a Bottom Three this disconnected from the performances of the night before. For John, Jon Peter and Camile to all be safe after what they put the audience through last night almost seems cruel to the nearly 26 million people who watched the show.
LaToya is safe, sent back to the podium.
As Jennifer and Amy stand under the glare, shifting back and forth out of nervousness, the cameraman keeps going back to shell-shocked John. Amy is humbly gracious about her prospects. Jennifer isn’t so humble, but she’s gracious enough. It turns out that her humility can wait an extra week. Pink-haired Amy Adams is heading home.
One week after blowing the competition away during Country Week, the 24-year-old make-up artist (and reputed Jay Leno lookalike) comes up short.
“I’m not gonna go away,” she promises, as the camera goes back, one last time, to John Stevens, looking miserable.