"American Idol": "I Am," Nanny Brooke Said. "Nuh-uh," We Replied.

After frightening us with word that we know more about this year's five remaining Idolettes than about any other contestants in "American Idol" history, show host Ryan Seacrest says he's "still out of breath" from previous night's Paula Abdul Goes Psychic Show.

"I don't know if it's the strangest we've ever had, but certainly the fastest," he says. Wrong. It was the strangest, but the usual length.


Brooke White (center) is eliminated from the competition. (Ray Mickshaw/FOX)

The Idolettes do what they can with such Neil Diamond tunes as "Cracklin' Rosie," "Song Sung Blue" and "Brother Love's Traveling Salvation Show" during the traditional Results Show Group Idol Sing, while silently cursing their grandparents for making this guy into a star.

Former Idolettes Constantine Maroulis -- I can't believe I ever rooted for him even if he did sing "Bohemian Rhapsody" -- and Gina Glocksen have been hosting a Fox Reality channel show that recaps "Idol," and, for reasons never explained, Seacrest gives them a big fat plug when there's only three more weeks to go on this season's competition.

The producers recap the previous night's show, minus Paula's interesting critique of Jason Castro's second song before he actually sang it. After that, Seacrest dives right in.

"Last night the judges were thrown a curve ball," he said, referring to the producers' bait-and-switch in which they told the judges to hold their critiques until after each Idolette had sung a second Diamond tune, only to surprise them and ask for their comments once all five Idolettes had finished Round 1.

"It sparked a lot of gossip about Paula," Seacrest says, referring, among other chatter, to a report by a syndicated celebrity suck-up show that it had found a waiter who claims to have served Paula a drink at lunch on Tuesday -- which, the show's Web site extrapolates, may mean she was drunk during "Idol" that night. Ah, drunk and psychic!

Other reports speculated Paula had been given a script, that the show isn't really live, blah, blah, blah.

Anyway, while Seacrest's speaking. Paula is in her chair, dressed as Patty Duke. She looks stricken, like Patty upon discovering her boyfriend, Richard is going to the prom with her identical cousin Cathy.

"The rumors are not true," Seacrest says.

"She is part of our family and we love her."

Judge Simon Cowell kisses Paula. Judge Randy Jackson kisses Paula. Paula is forgiven.

Time to start whacking Idolettes. Jason is brought on stage. Seacrest calls him J-Cas and wonders why even Paula savaged his two performances of Neil Diamond tunes -- both before and after he gave them. Jason says he gets better reviews when he's actually heard of the songs he's singing, or when he changes them drastically. He clearly has confused himself with David Cook. This week just gets weirder and weirder. But the judges' bad reviews mean squat to his prepubescent-chick voting block, and Jason is sent to the Sofa of Safety.

Which is interesting because this is usually the point in "Idol" where the Web site Dialidol starts getting accurate and it has Jason as the second-lowest vote getter.

David Archuleta is brought out next. Seacrest asks Paula why she said Baby Elmo needs to look like he's having more fun. Paula says because fun is what he needs to have more of. Baby Elmo says he had fun but he will try to have more. Seacrest says he's safe. "Oh my god!" mumbles Baby Elmo; he continues to mumble as he joins Jason on the sofa.

Randy models the new viewer-designed Coca-Cola cup while Seacrest shouts "Love the Cup! Be the Cup!"

Former Coroner Munchkin is brought out. He cracks his neck and looks vaguely bored. Seacrest wonders what David C. was thinking when Paula said Tuesday she thinks she's already looking at the next American Idol. Since "she was served a drink at lunch" and "she was handed a script" are not options, David C. says he was thinking about how the previous week, when Simon super-praised Carly Smithson, it was "the kiss of death." (Carly was last week's bootee). Seacrest sends him to the Sofa of Safety, making FCM feel a perfect fool. Oh wait, no he doesn't.

That leaves Nanny Brooke and Syesha Mercado as the Bottom Two vote-getters. Or does it? Interestingly, Seacrest never says so, and Dialidol has Syesha as this weeks TOP vote-getter. Seacrest says only, "One of you is safe and the other is going home, unfortunately" and never refers to them as the "Bottom Two."

We mull the possibility that the producers did not want Jason to be revealed as the other half of the Bottom Two this week because it would cause the J-Cas Pre-Pubescent Chick Fan Club to rally next week to save him, so they made Syesha suffer needlessly to ensure Jason goes home next week.

Seacrest tortures Syesha and Nanny Brooke with blather about their song choices and asks Syesha whether it's tough to pick songs each week. She resists the urge to smack him and says yes, it is, because most of the time she's never heard of any of the songs from which she has to choose. Seacrest tells them they can both spend some time on the Sofa of Safety while this week's British pop singer, Natasha Bedingfield, performs.

Natasha Bedingfield is wearing a shocking amount of clothing for a pop-singer chick -- some peasant-blouse thing that's not even falling off a shoulder, and sailor pants. She's so covered up, if she weren't blonde and wearing nearly as much eye makeup as Amy Winehouse, she'd be a total disaster.

She sings some pocket full of sunshine song, the gist of which seems to be that sticks and stones are never gonna break her, after which she demands to be allowed to go over to the Sofa of Safety to see David. David C. stands up, naturally assuming she means him. She runs over to Baby Elmo, plants herself next to him and gives him a big kiss, totally ignoring David C. I love live TV.

If you thought last week's lack of Phone Company Sponsors Actual Phone Calls segment on results night meant focus groups had told the network it was the worst product-placement idea ever, you were wrong. It's back. Shockingly, it coughs up something almost amusing: one Tara Miller, 46, from Petaluma, Calif., who calls in to find out which Simon thought better, kissing Paula several seasons back, or kissing her in his garden when he was 9 years old.

"Do you still look cute?" Simon asks before committing, no doubt anticipating if he says his 9-year-old kiss was better, he will be haunted by pictures in the tabs on Friday of some wizened old hag, run with the headline "Simon Says I'm the Best Kisser!"

Tara cleverly responds that she thinks he has aged well and she thinks she has, too. Even so, Simon declines to answer her. But Seacrest jumps in to tell all those kiddies watching that 9 years old is too young to start kissing: "You need to wait a bit."

How can the Ford Music Video top that? It can't, though it tries, by suggesting Ford hybrid vehicles can clean up graffiti and make flowers bloom and trees grow in the ghetto.

Finally, it's time for Neil Diamond himself to perform his tune "Pretty Amazing Grace." It's a pretty okay tune for a Neil Diamond song, which is to say it has no deaf chairs or cracklin' rosies.

Before he chats with Seacrest, he points out his mom in the audience. How can Neil Diamond be older than his own mother? Diamond says he continues to work even though, as Seacrest suggests, he doesn't need to, because he gets to put on clothes and people clap and he sings. "It's fun."

Seacrest wonders how he thought the Idolettes did the night before. You know what's coming:

"I thought the kids did great."

Time for someone to get whacked. Syesha and Nanny Brooke are brought back on stage. After 45 million votes, America has decided that the Idolette who is leaving is Brooke, Seacrest says.

"Yep," says Nanny Brooke, weeping. Nanny Brooke, frequent forgetter of lyrics, finally gets her walking papers, ironically, the night after remembering all the lyrics to her two tunes this week -- even the bit about no one hearing at all, not even the chair, in "I Am . . . I Said." She did write one of the tougher lines on the palm of her hand, about how the palm trees grow and the rents are low. Except, she forgot she was going to be playing the piano, which would've made it a bit tough to look at the lyrics on her hand.

But that's all moot now. Because Nanny Brooke is out.

"The brave, the vulnerable, the candid, the beautiful Brooke White," Seacrest gushes.

"I want to say thank you. This is gonna be terrible for me right now, but thank you," Nanny Brooke scolds though her tears.

She begins to sing her swan song, a re-do of "I Am . . . I Said."

And, in a perfect ending, she botches the lyrics -- twice.


By Lisa de Moraes  |  May 1, 2008; 7:20 AM ET "American Idol"
Previous: "American Idol": Holly Holy! It's Neil Diamond Night! | Next: "American Idol": The Unfab Four

Comments

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Wow, Lisa, good catch! Did they never, in fact, state Nanny and Syesha were the "bottom two"?? I assumed they were and, boy, do I feel used like a Pavlov's dog! And if TPTB (the powers that be) were doing this strategically to manipulate future voting....whoa, too Machiavellian to contemplate.

Now, as for Nanny's tears: do you think they were tears of joy for lasting so long, or was she bitterly disappointed thinking she actually had a shot of winning?

Posted by: MAlan | May 1, 2008 8:06 AM

Ding-Dong! The Witch is Dead! Man, that took WAAAAAY too long, but at last we are put out of Brooke's misery. BTW, loved the line about ND being older than his mom. That's quality snark.

Posted by: JB | May 1, 2008 8:12 AM

Third!

Posted by: Third | May 1, 2008 8:52 AM

Glad Nanny Brooke is gone. I hope Jason Castro is next.

Posted by: Brooklyn | May 1, 2008 8:55 AM

I second Brooklyn!

Posted by: WI | May 1, 2008 8:57 AM

Bye-Bye Nanny Boo Hoo!

Posted by: waterfrontproperty | May 1, 2008 9:06 AM

Love the close to this recap. It just puts it to bed SOOO nicely.

Posted by: 23112 | May 1, 2008 9:08 AM

The Natasha Bedingfield David-mixup was hi-larious. Seriously, if David C's ego was any more inflated, gravity would no longer keep him down and he would float up into the atmosphere, causing a brief toxic rain of melting hair product to devastate Los Angeles.

In other news, thank God Brooke is gone. I don't think I could have taken another week of her muppet-like expressions and faux earnestness.

Posted by: ASinMoCo | May 1, 2008 9:08 AM

AMAZING.
I have waited for what seems like forever for this week!!! AHHHH!!!!

Posted by: Raquel | May 1, 2008 9:16 AM

That "Simon says I'm the best kisser" line is laugh out loud funny...

Posted by: Does it matter | May 1, 2008 9:18 AM

Great review Pookie. Made suffering through the show worth it. I too thought ND was older than dirt and then to find out his mother was still alive!?! Scary.
I also noticed Ryan never said Sayesha and Brooke were the bottom two. Pookie, your theory makes total sense. The AI machine does not want another loser/winner. Your closer about Brooke was priceless. However, she actually did make me feel just a bit sorry for her...but then I got over it.

ASinMoCo, even though I am a big fan of David C, loved your comments about him. Made Diet Coke (from the can, not a fancy cup) come out of my nose.

Notice Paula dressed like the girl next door last night, actually looked adorable. A little damage control maybe...

Posted by: hodie | May 1, 2008 9:32 AM

I'm developing a new Superpower.

It's not really a good superpower, but I now have the ability to tell who is getting booted, or at the very least, who was bad but is safe from last night's recap.

Basically, anyone they show messing up the night before or getting murdered by the judges is safe. Last night in the recap they showed Jason getting slayed by the judges, and Brooke doing fine. I turned to my gf and said "Dead-Boy is safe, Nanny is gone." I called the same thing with Nanny being safe last week.

With great power comes great responsibility.

That said, are you people really figuring out that you need to listen very carefully to Seacrest's exact words? I figured this out years ago. I think it was Scott Savol, but basically Seacrest was lining up the idiolettes and having them go to the couch of safety or not. He finally got to one person (I think it was Savol, but now I'm thinking it's not) and he went over the judges' reviews and told the dude to have a seat on the couch.

I immediately said, "He never said he was safe, he just told him to sit down!" Seacrest went through the rest of the line with two left standing. And then he was like "You're both safe, Scott (or whoever) you're gone sucka!*"

Good times.

PS - has anyone seen Christin? I hope she's OK...

* - actual conversation may vary, but you get the idea.

Posted by: Duffman | May 1, 2008 9:49 AM

Duffman I am in awe of your superpowers...
yeah I noticed the absence of Christin and Dadwannabe on yesterdays blogs. Miss Christins sarcasm and Dads' insight.

Posted by: hodie | May 1, 2008 9:59 AM

The day Castro leaves is the day this show becomes officially unworthy of TIVO. As a singing competition, the show is an embarrassment to America, Ford, Coke, Neil Diamond, and the good people of Exxon. I can hear 3 better singers at the local theater. For those with a brain, it's just goofball, in-your-face train wreck fun.

PLEASE make that stoner win. At this point, even he's horrified to keep surviving. This week: Castro goes ska.

Posted by: Doorknob | May 1, 2008 9:59 AM

Duffman ... LMAO!!!!!

Posted by: Anonymous | May 1, 2008 10:01 AM

Pookie, did you think Paula looked like Patty Duke last night? I was thinking more "That Girl" a la Marlo Thomas. Maybe it's the whole hair-in-a-flip thing ...

Yay! BaNanny is gone.

Posted by: jpstang | May 1, 2008 10:03 AM

A thought on the way Fox purposely tourtured Syesha. Interestingly, DialIdol had both Syesha and David Cook safe and Archuleta, Brooke and Jason Castro not safe. So we shouldn't assume that Castro would have been in the bottom two. Maybe Archuleta would have been (we can only hope so). Perhaps the producers, for whatever reason, didn't want Archuleta to seem vulnerable this week, so they pulled their Syesha trick (which was a cruel one). Maybe the producers wouldn't mind seeing Archuleta go home for controversy sakes so they did not want him to seem vulnerable this week thereby getting more votes next week. This theory is just as likely as the Jason Castro theory.

Posted by: JSnapper | May 1, 2008 10:31 AM

Thank goodness that Brooke White is gone. She lasted far too long on the show.

I am actually becoming a Jason Castro fan--I kinda like his plaintive, laid-back singing style. However, I really wanted to hear him sing "Red, Red Wine" this week--I think it would have been a perfect song for him.

Syesha has a good voice, but she just doesn't do anything for me. She seems like a very generic performer most of the time. Technically good, but lacking a certain je-ne-sais-quoi.

I still think that David Archuleta will be the perfect Idol. They'll have no problem shaping him into whatever the 'tweens want. And he'll be more than happy to record this year's American Idol Treacle Tune. (I gotta say, too, that "Baby Elmo" is the best nickname ever.)

Which leaves me with David Cook. I love his style and edge, and am hoping against hope that he doesn't win so he can get a decent contract with a label that will let him do what he wants. I haven't liked all of his performances (this week didn't really do anything for me), but I always remember them.

Having said that, it might be worth him winning to see what he does with the Treacle Tune. Can you imagine?

Posted by: Sappho | May 1, 2008 10:32 AM

Holy Cow that medley was awful - what, 10 minutes of rehearsal in between photo shoots?

The kids seem exhausted - David A in particular...

Posted by: Rob Iola | May 1, 2008 10:41 AM

"I love his style and edge, and am hoping against hope that he doesn't win so he can get a decent contract with a label that will let him do what he wants."

Win or lose, if he wants to do anything in the next 5 years, he's got to do it with Idol's label. I think it's BMG. Hopefully they will let him do what he wants.

Posted by: Duffman | May 1, 2008 11:01 AM

Castro doesn't have a laid back singing style - he can't carry a tune to save his life. He's an embarrassment to AI.

Posted by: WI | May 1, 2008 11:08 AM

Rob agree about the medley. Knew we couldn't get through ND week without hearing Cracklin Rosie. Jason actually sounded like a different person on that one. Song Song Blue was just horrible. Reminded me of the Lawrence Welk Show. I can bet that rehearsals include alot of muttering from the idolettes that "this is lame, this is stupid, I don't want to do that"...except from David A. it seems right up his alley.

Posted by: hodie | May 1, 2008 11:12 AM

Ok, full disclosure, I do not watch AI, have never watched AI, but have enjoyed reading Lisa's commentary for the past couple of seasons. This is my first time even bothering to comment, but how can you want to become a singer, musician whatever and not listen all different types of music? I am 41, I grew up listening to contemporary (top 40), Motown, the Beatles, Jazz, I was the only black kid I knew that owned Peter Frampton Live. I am not a Neil Diamond fan, but I've heard a lot of his songs. It is a sad sad time for music if this is the best we can do.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 1, 2008 11:18 AM

Great wrap-up Lisa, and great comments y'all.

The ND medley was so AI treacle, using three of the most arguably Disneyesque songs in the ND songbook - so Up with People. Finally got to see Nanny do Song Sung Blue - the perfect cliche for her.

I missed that no one did Solitary Man, one of few ND songs I really like, but only D.C. could have handled it. Smart though not to do it and risk being unfavorably compared to ND. Huge hits can be a kiss of death.

Paula has a problem, and all the excuses are so much b.s. No professional with a clear head would fumble like that. Maybe she is really just so stupid, she can't follow anything, but her thinking/speaking is so disorganized. I think Ryan and judges are enablers. Huge mistake for Ryan to say "rumors aren't true." Makes people want to search internet for rumor chat. Thought I'd gag over "we are a family" (of co-dependents?) The line about accidentally using her D.Cook notes is a lie since "charm" is the word she uses repeatedly for Jason and never for D.C. Patty Duke? Marlo Thomas? LOL

Some good theories about sending Jason to safety early to prevent sympathy. AI producers want to make money on the winner, and anyone who wins must have the commitment, maturity (or willingness to be controlled), and some potential broad appeal for this to happen. Jason, despite a strong fan base is the remaining idolette with narrowest appeal, utter lack of poise, seemingly undisciplined, etc. He is a potential nightmare for AI handlers. Anybody think he could get out of bed on time to get to a rehearsal or gig?

I like David Cook (despite his arrogance), but he is not what AI wants either - way too independent. But I too, think he'd be better off coming in #2 for his own sanity and career.

Interesting that Jason led off this past week, the forgettable position in line-up. Bet he'll be back there again next week?

Duffman, you are SO RIGHT about recap comments relative to safety. When Carly was booted, all comments about her were positive. But when she was safe previous weeks, she got hammered. Ditto I think, Kristy Lee.

JSnapper - interesting POV. I've been assuming all along that AI would love to have David A win it. Maybe not. Young'uns are a risk - they have school and parent control issues, they are immature and have yet to go through a rebellious stage. Witness Miley Cyrus. Hmm.

From a business POV, Syesha would be a good AI because she has enough talent, looks, and marketability, plus she is clearly a smart cookie,hard worker, tenacious, and self-disciplined. Not as talented as many previous idol runners-up, but a good sell.

Anybody notice that David A. never seems to reply coherently to judges' comments/questions? His reply about Paula's feedback that he lost some fun seemed as though he was agreeing with her that he had fun, missing her point. But he always seems off - deer in the headlights - cannot handle any interview question coherently or with any personality. Though I'm relieved Nanny went home, she at least seemed awake.

So where will Nanny's fans go? May be scattered. Will the idolettes FINALLY get to sing songs of their own choosing? Or is AI so much about control, that it won't happen.

Posted by: Idle fan | May 1, 2008 11:31 AM

Oh my goodness - Up With People, Lawrence Welk AND Patty Duke???? I'll call them and raise you a Sing Along With Mitch!

We do date ourselves - but seriously - who doesn't think Bedingfield's schtick with David A. was scripted?

At age 9 I would have thought him a dweeb. Or to answer one of the AI phone in questions: "What was the first album you bought?" Correct answer: "Meet the Beatles" - age 9.

Kids today - their taste is all in their mouths. Wonder if I've now become NEIL DIAMOND'S mother???!!!

Posted by: Jean | May 1, 2008 11:55 AM

I can't believe no one's commented on the actual elimination sequence, one of the most bizarre I've seen. Brooke crying and babbling, she hugs not Syesha but Ryan, turning her back on Syesha. Then she finally starts her song and screws up the lyrics yet again, a perfect sendoff. The other idolettes join her, you think, for support. But watch the video. David C tries to give her a quick hug but she backs away from him. Syesha's stepped away from her and has a look on her face "you left me here with stoner boy and Baby Elmo - what do I have to do to get voted off?" Stoner boy smiles, sticks his hands in his pockets in his typical hey-don't-ask-me-to-get-involved-and-make-an-effort way. Ever notice when he's not singing his hands are in his pockets? That's a sign of disinterest and no connection to what's going on. Baby Elmo grins his goofy, creepy smile then hides behind Syesha the entire time they're on camera, even moving when she does so no one can see him in the audience or on camera (what is he, 5?) I've watched it over and over and it's bizarre. I've waited for Brooke to go, how she got this far I've never figured out, but boy did we get our money's worth in the last 2 weeks with AI.

Posted by: ilovesimon | May 1, 2008 11:57 AM

You're right "ilovesimon." It was weird. Nanny has been in the bottom so often, I'm surprised at her reaction. Kristi and Carly handled disappointment far better, despite the fact that they both had more singing ability than BaNanny.

Also, as camera pulled away at end of her final song, she turns her back and walks away from everyone, leaving them all looking helpless and surprised. No group hug. Ryan alone went back to further console her, seeing the awkwardness of the whole thing.

Posted by: Holly | May 1, 2008 12:09 PM

To the idiot who wrote "how can Neil Diamond be older than his mother" I bet you are a bib creepo and post your picture on the internet when you are 67 and see how you look. I am 53 and look much youger than my age and that's the truth. I think Neil Diamond looks pretty fabulous for any age.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 1, 2008 12:09 PM

Jean - if you look like Neil Diamond's mother, the gang o' posters here will take up a collection for you for a little nip here, tuck there.

Posted by: Dr. 90210 | May 1, 2008 12:11 PM

Dr. 90210 -

Relax - if your Botox allows it. The sentiment, "I have become my mother" never implies the speaker thinks she LOOKS like her mother.

Posted by: Jean | May 1, 2008 12:30 PM

BTW - next week's theme is Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Do Jason and David A. know what R&R is? ;-0

Posted by: Holly | May 1, 2008 12:31 PM

This is from the radio blog in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Paula was doing a phone interview with the number one morning show team on Q100. She talked about the 'mix-up' on Tuesday night.

"Summed up Abdul: "It was embarrassing and kooky."

After she hung up, Q100 went into a commercial break. Then she unexpectedly rang the radio station back.

When she was put back live on the air, Abdul realized she had phoned the same radio station twice, apologized and said: "I'm getting my notes all mixed up."

Posted by: methinks | May 1, 2008 12:32 PM

"Also, as camera pulled away at end of her final song, she turns her back and walks away from everyone, leaving them all looking helpless and surprised."

As someone who cries easily, I completely understand this. When you want to handle a situation with dignity, but your tear-ducts betray you, you would rather not be facing the camera. Brooke has proven during the season that tears come easily for her. She probably didn't want to be seen as a "crybaby".

Posted by: another crybaby | May 1, 2008 12:37 PM

Jean, "Sing Along with Mitch" is waaay before my time!!! LOL. I suffered through Lawrence Welk and HeeHaw at my grandparents house. No KLC still around to remind me of HeeHaw.

Posted by: hodie | May 1, 2008 12:55 PM

"Ditto I think, Kristy Lee."

---

When KLC got booted is when my super-power first started taking form. Johns helped me hone it, and I was a regular Syler by the time Carly got whacked. Now, it's not even a challenge.

Posted by: Duffman | May 1, 2008 1:13 PM

Interesting comment about Jason Castro's fan base being pre-pubescents. In all actuality, his largest fan base is ... get this... Moms. We, the MWLJ's as in Moms Who Love Jason (ages 30-50) LOVE this boy. So, before these writers ...uh, write... they should do some research. We are also mature enough that we don't bash other contestants. Just vote for our boy, Jason, our little cub.

Posted by: Gina | May 1, 2008 1:20 PM

Here I am, actually still alive on this planet. Did you really miss me? Decided to come and check out the unbridled joy and celebration I knew would be rampant today here in Brookehateland. To tell the truth I was somewhat complacent this week, thinking it would be Jason (abominable performances) or Syesha (perpetual Bottom 2). Well, I really don't think BaNanny could have lasted more than a week or two anyway. True, it will be less fun now with her folkie-vibe gone; even the Nanny-haters here may secretly miss not having Brooke to kick around anymore.

Oh well: it's pretty predictible now. We get to listen to Cook (the only interestng singer left), Archie Bubblegum, Jason Stoner doing 2nd rate busker stuff, and Syesha (actually can be OK though terminally forgettable if she keeps off the Mariah-Whitney Kool-Aid, which I doubt will happen). Syesha (undeservedly) and Jason (richly merited) get the heave-ho and we're down to the long-inevitable Final 2. Can't guess who's going to win that one? David Cook, meet Bo Bice. And no, I'm NOT comparing Carrie to Archie, except as being AI's.

Have to admit that Brooke's weepy walkaway at the end was a classic exit, even if it may have been classic kitch.

Posted by: Christin | May 1, 2008 1:32 PM

Moms who love Jason. Yea!!

"Let the stoner win..." too funny!

Posted by: Ellen705 | May 1, 2008 2:33 PM

Ok..I never post on this site but look forward to reading not only the review but ALL the comments. You folks are a snarky RIOT and have me lol-ing in my office. Which does nothing to promote the idea that I am a serious worker-bee. That being said rock&roll week should be great. Baby Elmo sings tooty fruity ala Pat Boone; JC gives us Breathless; Syesha does something by Aretha cuz she's just gotta; the night will belong to David C singing anything by Elvis.

Heehaw...Mitch Miller..LWelk...PRICELIESSS

Posted by: ldjackson58 | May 1, 2008 2:33 PM

Idjackson - I could tell you what I do for a living, but then I'd have to kill you.

I think the reason you enjoy our comments is that we Boomer/Cougars are, as Christian Siriano would say, just so FIERCE.

With that in mind, Hodie - you can run, but you can't hide.

I, too watched Lawrence Welk with one set of grandparents and HeeHaw with the other. And I note:

"The Lawrence Welk Show" 1955-1982
"HeeHaw 1969-1993
"The Patty Duke Show" 1963-1966
"Sing Along with Mitch" 1961-1966
"The Gong Show" 1976-1980

In closing, like a martial arts throwing star, I'm "all in" with:

"Shindig"
"Hullabaloo"
&
"Hootenanny"

There is NO WAY the producers of AI are not well-versed in this folk/pop holly holy trilogy - or they could not ever have come up with last night's "Coca-Cola is blowing out my nose" group number.

The frug, the pony, the jerk, the "bugaloo hip hop" (as DWTS' Len Goodman so eloquently put it) - my God what's next? Will the Idol Tour all "Do the Freddie"?

I'm going to take a tricyclic antidepressant now and try to make it until next week.

Your OLD friend,

Jean

Posted by: Jean | May 1, 2008 3:13 PM

I don't get middle aged Moms who are smitten with Jason ...

Is it the voice? Nope
Is it his fondness for weed? Doubtful
Is it his dreadlocks? Maybe they fantasize about putting a bowl on his head and fixing that mess ...

Posted by: Anonymous | May 1, 2008 3:40 PM

Since some posters are coming out of the closet age wise, may as well, too. Jean, I'm with you - remember ALL that stuff. My grandmother lived with us, so as a little kid I was practically required to watch Mitch, Welk, et al. And how about that Jack LaLanne - still pumping iron - but I digress.

Re: Jason and mom-types- I get it but I don't get it - it must be the eyes (maybe John Travolta was a sperm donor...Maybe he reminds them of what they liked best about Woodstock generation. but I think one above posts is correct, he has already mentally checked out. Doesn't want to embarrass himself too much, but doesn't want to win either. He'd have to dramatically alter his lifestyle.

I like all kinds of hair lengths on men, including shaved and bald. BUT, if it looks greasy or impossible to wash - YECCHH!. Btw, my 21 and 18 yr. old daughters are in full YECCHH as well about bad hair. We are at the mother-daughter stage when we can agree on what is hot, and what is not.

Now Michael Johns, very yummy. His and David Cook's voices are sexy. My husband? "Whatever gets you in the mood, honey!"

Next week's group number: Rock and Roll Heaven" by the Righteous Brothers.

One more rant: Baby Elmo is SO Overrated.

Posted by: Idle fan | May 1, 2008 4:34 PM

I can tell you but I won't admit that I am yet middle aged.
Jason is popular because he has a nice soothing voice, beautiful eyes and is CALM. That is something all Moms want. Remember "Calgon! Take me away!"? Jason does just that. This doesn't mean I am in his camp but I do understand it. I actually prefer the more edgy David C. My kids are continually shocked that we have many of the same songs on our ipods.
Jean, thanks for the dates, Mitch and Patty Duke, still before my time but I probably saw plenty of reruns.

Posted by: hodie | May 1, 2008 4:36 PM

Geez, you guys. Jason barely HAS a voice. I'm sure he's a nice dude and all but he is NOT a singer.

Posted by: WI | May 1, 2008 4:59 PM

Just reread Lisa for another laugh -esp. enjoyed the 2 p's about Natasha pop-singer-chick.

I'm now thinking that Natasha was scripted for that hug Elmo - very little that happens on live tv is unscripted. And no way that chick would go for David A. An unscripted moment would have had her greeting each idolette, which is what they all expected. But her behavior said script: focus on Baby Elmo, so Ryan can have his prom line. The AIettes were in dark, because the director wanted some surprise reaction, but Ryan and Nat. knew the plan.

Btw, all that free-form banter you see on late night tv is at least 80% scripted. No host or guest would want to risk winging it. No agent in their right mind would send their client out there w/o a script.

This may be part of Paula's problem. Maybe she jumped her script. Frankly, the only judge who seems at most in the moment is Simon. But they have seen dress rehearsals, etc. Notice when camera pans him during a performance - he often looks bored, as though he has been there, done that, and is just waiting for it to be over again.

Posted by: Holly | May 1, 2008 5:32 PM

Oh, Hodie - describing Jason as "calm" has got to be the understatement of the year. He's the poster child for the "Prozac Nation".

Posted by: Jean | May 1, 2008 5:41 PM

I think the Jason Castro appeal can be explained thusly: he's like the sweet, goofy guy we all knew who drifted through high school, drifted into college, dropped out to go to Mexico one year, drifted to California, and ended up opening a surfboard shop on the Baja coast.

So here's Jason, who seems to have drifted into American Idol and is sort of aimlessly wandering through the competition. You so seldom see his type (or what I'm thinking is his type--this is, of course, all a grand, sweeping generalization) on American Idol that some feel protective of him so that he won't realize what a big, bad world it is out there.

Posted by: Sappho | May 1, 2008 6:05 PM

dang you people are old! LOL

Posted by: Nursing Home Aide | May 1, 2008 8:22 PM

jean baby, you've got me going now. I have this sweet mental image of you as a boomer/cougar ... meow! Kind of Quinn-like from Real Housewives of Orange County. 'cept I don't believe you're getting any.

Posted by: Dr. 90210 | May 1, 2008 8:31 PM

Get a room folks, LOL!

Posted by: Idle fan | May 1, 2008 8:56 PM

hey nursing home aid, you'll be waiting a long time to see me! I'm pretty sure Jean is waaay older than me! ;)

Posted by: hodie | May 2, 2008 9:21 AM

Syesha and Brooke were in the bottom 2.
Dial Idol's stats on Syesha have been off all season.
I think they're not working with a large enough sample.

Posted by: anon | May 2, 2008 2:55 PM

I cannot believe the writer of this article is even employed by the Washington Post. I have always thought of the Post as a very respectable newspaper; however, now I have to rethink this. What respectable newpaper would emplpoy a hack writer like you? What a douche bag! Maybe you should learn to do a little bit of research and background on the people you bash. Yes, by now you have guessed I am a Jason Castro fan. I think the stuff that is being said about him is just plain mean. He is very talented! I am not a tweeny or a teeny (those are little David fans!)I am a 51 year old woman with two daughters in their early twenties. My taste in music is very diverse. I like everything from rap to rock. I have only downladed Jason's and David C's songs. I really love Jason's voice and his phrasings. It does not hurt that he is so very easy on the eyes! I would love if one of my children brought someone just like him home to meet Mom. BTW I am one of the MWLJ! Anyway Lisa,you suck But,of course,that is just my opinion!

Posted by: lcchb | May 2, 2008 4:35 PM

Jason C reminds me of Tiny Tim singing "Tiptoe Through the Tulips." Has anyone else noticed this?

Posted by: P.C. | May 2, 2008 11:30 PM

lcchb, can't believe you're 51 using such language as douchebag and suck. How immature. LM's humor obviously goes over your head and you can't see that she plays no favorites. Even so, everyone is entitled to their own opinion, even you.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 5, 2008 9:11 AM

Icchb - If you don't like it, then stay away from this blog. Lisa is a talented writer who snarks everyone to some extent. One of the most enjoyable things about her columns is that she doesn't take things too seriously - one of many things I love about her writing. If criticism of JC outrages you, then it is we the bloggers who are a better target for your wrath: we are far harsher.

Your comments are not "respectable." Calling her a "douchebag" and saying she "sucks" is vulgar and immature. You sound like the histrionic posters on AOL, who cannot articulate a thoughtful argument.

Actually, I'm surprised you are 51. If that's the case, then it's time for you to grow-up in your perspective and commentary.


Posted by: Holly | May 5, 2008 2:25 PM

He's baaacccckkkk!

I really appreciate that someone noticed that I was AWOL. My wife had surgery out-of-town last week and we were traveling Tuesday and spent the day at the hospital on Wednesday. Wednesday and Thursday, just taking care of her and didn't get a chance to drop in on the blog. We were able to catch the performances on rickey.org and then watched the results on Wednesday.

I have to say that I think that Brooke should be happy. I personally think she succeeded beyond her talents. Hopefully, she'll be able to use the publicity to do well in her niche market. Next up for the same fate, should hopefully be Jason Castro. Despite the MWLJ group, I think that Jason, as well, has achieved more than his talents warrant. And hopefully he too can use the publicity as a springboard to hook into his niche market. But, unfortunately, to me, he doesn't seem to have the major star abilities. We'll see in the next few weeks, won't we?

Posted by: DadWannaBe | May 5, 2008 3:24 PM

Right on Holly about ICCHB. I think they were dyslexic and her age is actually 15.

Welcome back DadWanaBe. Hope MomWanaBe is feeling well soon.

Posted by: hodie | May 5, 2008 3:45 PM

I personally think theme "Rock & Roll Hall of Fame" will be the Walk of Shame for at least two of the remaining contestants. We ought to be able to head straight into semi-finals afterward - but I guess Fox will drag it out one more torturous week.

Posted by: Jean | May 5, 2008 4:13 PM

Welcome back Dad Wannabe (and MomW).
Jean, I agree.

Just wish Carly and Michael were here for this R&R theme. If it had been several weeks ago, we might be looking at a different final 4. Or at least, we would have enjoyed program more then.

If Fox wants to get show back on track, they need to lose the theme weeks in current format, or at least ditch mentors who belong to my generation (Boomers). No wonder AI is losing in the 18-49 age market (according to AP news).

Posted by: Idle fan | May 5, 2008 5:58 PM

How about mentors (regardless of age) who actually "coach" and "mentor"? Take the muzzle off them. I think ALW proved that, of our generation, the dialogue could be entertaining - and informative!

I agree with another poster that whatever your artistic field - you're not much of an "artist" if you don't have some historical perspective on your form/genre. Now, they may be doing this - but not showing it - but how about teaching the Idolettes something about the history of US pop music along the way? And put it in the context of the music they'll be asked to perform.

And then let the guest mentor have some say in the final placement - either by sending one person to safety/one to detention - whatever.

Just mix it up a little more. It's really boring and predictable now - whatever your age group.

Posted by: Jean | May 6, 2008 10:13 AM

Yes! I agree, let the mentor be a guest judge, rather than a performer. Let them grade the idolette on how well they responded to constructive criticism, provided they gave any, and the interpretation of the music they know so well. Lets also look for mentors not afraid to criticize and are not just showing up to plug their latest venture (although its a good perk but they should earn it). IMHO, Dolly and ND offered none. Mariah offered some constructive criticism but for some reason I really dislike her. Can't quite put my finger on it. ALW was just right and deserved what ever promotional kickbacks he received. More mentors like him please!

Posted by: hodie | May 6, 2008 10:23 AM

Well, despite the fact that the mentors are not current and as performers, don't appeal to the audience, the older mentors do tend to be able to actually provide some actual mentoring. Most of the younger hip artists are still figuring out what works for them, have had limited experience with what *doesn't* work and how to adjust when something is close but not quite working. They aren't really prepared for mentoring.

The best mentors are the ones who actually have had some extensive work in music theory, voice, music writing, etc. Despite what people think, go back and check out David Foster's coaching of Eliot Yamin for "A Song For You" and you'll see that he really understands music theory and how to build on what the music is doing. Tony Bennett, (even older than those people are complaining about), certainly knew enough about showmanship to do some good coaching with the idolettes last season on presentation and making the most of the music. Martina McBride is relatively young, but definitely old for the 16-35 demographic. But she knows what it takes to make music work and how to present it. And she passed it on. The youngest mentor that I've seen, Gwen Stefani, seemed the least equipped to actually mentor.

R&R performances tonight should be interesting.

Posted by: DadWannaBe | May 6, 2008 2:02 PM

Good comments hodie, Jean, and Dadwannabe re: mentors. Except for ALW, it was all a yawn this year, and transparent marketing for the mentors. Disappointing considering there was some good mentoring in past. Barry Manilow was surprisingly good (was it 2 yrs. ago?).

Maybe one of problems is primarily having performers as mentors. In sports, great coaches were rarely great players. I think music producers/directors/composers might be better. Probably one of reasons ALW was good. Giving feedback is part of his job in musical theater. The performers this year have all seemed squeamish about criticism.

Also, in previous years, it was interesting hearing the mentor give feedback to singer rather than having mentor talk to camera as done this year. Of course they are going to back off and be nicey-nice. They have music to sell and don't want to turn-off viewing public by seeming hard on someone's favorite.

Posted by: Idle fan | May 6, 2008 5:19 PM

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