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American Idol Season 6 (2007)

 

April 10 -  The rhythm is gonna bite you (Latin songs)

 

In an effort to be different, Ryan starts the show backstage with the contestants, and the cast of Drive and Mickey Dolenz are in the audience.  Ho-hum.  Tonight Jennifer Lopez joins us to shake her booty…er…mentor the contestants in Latin music.  She mistakenly thinks that the top 8 are interesting.  They sit at her feet and worship her.  And then they proceed to prove that if you're not Latino, you have no business singing these songs.

Melinda Doolittle (sings Dean Martin's/Michael Bublé's/Pussycat Dolls'/take your pick "Sway"): Jennifer sees Melinda's sultry, sexy side and wants her to bring that out.  And I'd say that the voice is sexy, but the performance isn't.  She's clearly uncomfortable trying to sell it as such, and she's dressed as if she's still in last week's "standards" show.  Ah, well.  We can't be perfect all the time, I guess.  Randy says it was another solid performance.  Paula thinks she's sultry and smooth.  Simon didn't like it because it was a bit cabaret, lounge-y, etc., etc., insert your stock insult here, and she looks too old.  He says she's better than that and warns her that she has to blow them away every week.  Melinda doesn't mind the criticism - she's glad he finally got the chance to say something bad about her.  Simon catches himself smiling and stops.  Awww.

LaKisha Jones (sings Gloria Estefan's "Conga"): LaKisha tried out for Idol to get a better life for her and her kid.  Jennifer can't teach her about singing, so she tries to teach her how to dance.  Well, it was a nice attempt, anyway.  I'm not sure she really succeeded, because the camera insists on focusing on LaKisha from the waist up.  This isn't exactly a song to show off her (or anyone's) amazing vocals, either.  So, despite the fact that I think she actually smiles a little, what we're left with is...zzzzzz.  Randy says she was having fun, and it was hawt.  Paula thinks she was being safe and wants her to push for it more.  Simon agrees with Paula - he doesn't think people were having fun at home watching it.  Ouch.  The divas are going down tonight.

Chris Richardson (sings Santana's "Smooth"): Jennifer corrects his pronunciation and puts the song in a higher key to better suit his voice.  Chris is joined on stage by a percussionist and a guitarist who is definitely not Carlos Santana.  Performance-wise, he's okay.  As for the vocals...well, I'm thinking the only person who should sing Rob Thomas is Rob Thomas.  But insert ear plugs, and Chris sure does look purty.  Randy thinks he did a really good job.  Paula calls it a hot performance, which makes Chris blush.  Simon doesn't believe it was the best vocal he's heard, but Chris gets points for having something that was more contemporary than the first two singers.

Haley Scarnato (sings Gloria Estefan's "Turn the Beat Around"): Blake beatboxed during rehearsal for her because - surprise, surprise - she can't keep a beat.  Jennifer says she has to throw the song at people.  What she throws at us are her legs.  I then proceed to have a seizure from all the flashing lights on stage.  What the...?  When I recover, I think Haley sang something, or was that the background singers?  Whatever.  Randy calls it very karaoke.  Paula believes she had fun up there.  Simon says she has a good tactic by wearing the least amount of clothing possible.  Yeah, that about sums it up.

Phil Stacey (sings Santana's "Maria, Maria"): Phil is disoriented by singing in front of Jennifer, who gets goose pimples from him.  Vocally, with the exception of a couple of weird cracks, he's decent.  But tonight's performance doesn't make me think of Nosferatu - I'm thinking fish eyes instead.  From a dying fish.  Lying on the beach, gasping its last breath.  Oh, dear.  Randy calls him boring.  Paula believes that the vocal was really good.  Simon thinks it was lifeless and flat.  "Sorry," he says.  Oh, yes, I'll bet you are.  Phil points out that his daughter just got a stuffed cow that they've named Simon Cowell.  Oh, ha, ha.

When Ryan announces that Jordin and Blake are next, I realize that Sanjaya has the pimp slot tonight.  That right there tells me how badly this episode sucks.

Jordin Sparks (sings Gloria Estefan's "Rhythm Is Gonna Get You"): If Jordin could choose a theme week, she'd choose the 80s, even though she wasn't born until 1989.  I feel old after that statement, but I also feel like voting my fingers off for her.  Jennifer is reminded of Michael Jackson when Jordin sings this for her.  Ummm...yeah.  Jordin is okay, but she seems almost as uncomfortable as Melinda up there, and the fast vibrato really bugs me.  Really, what are these people thinking with their song choices?  Randy says she has the "yo" factor.  Paula calls her authentic and adorable.  Simon says it was an okay performance, but not stellar.

Blake Lewis (sings Marc Anthony's "I Need To Know"): Jennifer wants him to pick up a girl with the song.  To say he's the best vocal of the night is probably not saying much, but there you have it.  He's the most comfortable on stage, too - he actually almost flirts with the camera.  And all the female audience members swoon.  Randy says it was the best song choice of the night and a hawt performance.  Paula says the performance was very smart.  Simon actually parrots Randy for a change and says it's the best song choice and performance so far.  Gee, you think they like him?

Sanjaya Malakar (sings Latin standard "Bésame Mucho"): Sanjaya impressed Jennifer, who laughingly believes that Simon will be impressed, too.  I'm creeped out by Sanjaya's "come hither" looks in the camera - he's too young to be that sleazy - but his voice (shock!) isn't half-bad, even if it is too weak for the band.  And he's the only person to sing a significant portion of his song in Spanish tonight.  Randy says he's one of the smartest contestants he's ever known, and the song was pretty good.  Paula reluctantly says it was nice.  Although Simon couldn't understand a word of it, and he believes Sanjaya sang like a 14-year-old, he actually thinks it wasn't horrible - although he'll hate himself for that admission in the morning.

This show is now officially the worst episode of the season, ranking right up there with Gloria Estefan week in Season 3.  Note to Idol producers: do not do Latin songs unless you have Latino singers, okay?  No one else gets it.

Must I do rankings tonight? Oh, okay:

1. Blake - Best vocal, most comfortable on stage.
2. Melinda - Solid if not striking vocal, uncomfortable on stage.
3. Phil/LaKisha/Jordin - They all had okay vocals, but the performances were duller than dishwater.
6. Sanjaya - Who typed that? It couldn't have been me.  Okay, with a stronger voice, he could have jumped over the number 3 cluster.  Shoot me now.
7. Chris - Vocals sucked, but he looked okay, and at least I could hear him, unlike...
8. Haley - Her legs were singing more than her throat.

Are you ready for country week next week?  I know I am!  [*rolls eyes*]

Bottom 3 on April 11 Results Show (in order announced):  Phil Stacey, Haley Scarnato, Chris Richardson

Eliminated:  Haley Scarnato

 

Review © 2007 by Patricia Lowhorn.  For comments, e-mail tricia@lowhorn.org.

 

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