Nick/Normund Licked on "American Idol"
Simon finds religion.
Kara uses up all her minutes.
My favorite ad airs again.
Is this the best-ever "American Idol" results show or what?
"The foundation of this show has always been The Power of The Vote," show host Ryan Seacrest intones at the top of Thursday's "Idol" results show, like he's Tom Brokaw on some Greatest Generation reality show.
"The shape of this programs depends on The Decisions You Make," Seacrest continues.
"What Have You Done?" he says, stopping and turning melodramatically to stare at camptastic Nick "Normund Gentle" Mitchell -- the Idolette the show producers fear most.
A "staggering" 25 million votes were cast among this week's 12 Idolettes, only three of whom will be sent to the survivor stools at night's end. This year's stools are more sophisticated than last year's tractor seats, resembling stemware martini glasses to symbolize the "massive opportunity," as some Idolette put it, that each singer gets simply by being on this show.
Because they have, mercifully, killed the Seacrest Chats Up Idolette Parents gag on this season's "Idol" (just one week after its horrifying introduction), the show producers appear to have some time to kill, because Seacrest starts vamping about how in awe he is of "Idol" judge Simon Cowell this season.
Simon at first plays along, telling Seacrest it's kind of him to say so, but when Seacrest continues in the your-so-brilliant vein, Simon tells him to put a sock in it and get on with the show.
Queue the aspirational How They Got here video, and then it's time for The Group Sing. The 12 Idolettes sing "Closer" while walking around stage and posing for the camera like they're the cast of a new CW drama making a promo. Jeanine Vailes is wearing short shorts to show off her great gams; pretty Megan Corkrey's hair has grown four inches overnight; Nick/Normund is trying hard to keep the camp in check.
It's time for a commercial break, but Seacrest promises us if we're very good and don't fast forward through the ads, we will see some super-special "American Idol" material in the ad break. Turns out to be some chick hacking away at "It's In His Kiss" and "Idol" judge Kara DioGuardi singing the last line. It's an unforgivable trick to play on "Idol" fans, but, by not fast forwarding through the ad break, it means we get to see that E Trade ad in which one of the babies sings "Take These Broken Wings." Best ad ever.
Time to remember The Way We Were the Previous Night. Please, oh please show us Matt Girard doing Pretend Coldplay, Kris Allen as Carnival Cruise Ship Michael Jackson, Nick "Normund Gentle" Mitchell making love to the judge desk's "American Idol" logo, Megan Corkrey's Hot-Whites-Regular-Wash-Cycle Dance, and Adam Lambert doing Andrew Lloyd Weber's version of Mick Jagger's "Satisfaction." Good times.
"Let's start with Nick," Seacrest says once that trip down video memory lane is over.
"Hypothetically if you don't make it through, what can we expect from you?"
"I'm looking for employment always," Nick responds. Someone give this guy a talk show.
Matt Breitzke is worried, and rightfully so, that viewers will not have liked that he dissed Simon for telling him his song choice was all wrong. Now Matt's singing a different tune -- an "at this stage we all have a lot to learn...I don't know it's ever to the point where it's too late for advice" tune. But of course, it's too late; the votes are in. And Simon's not accepting the apology, though he rejects Seacrest's hopeful suggestion there is animosity between the two men.
Jesse Langseth confides that song choice is very hard, but that she picked the perfect song for her. She can't vouch for the others. Jeanine of the Gorgeous Gams thinks she may have "overcompensated" during her performance and "less could have been more." Seacrest gallantly notes that is not the case when it comes to her lovely legs.
Time to dash some Idolettes's hopes.
Seacrest brings Allison Iraheta to the center of the stage. According to the WaPo TeamTV's Totally Unscientific Poll, Allison should survive tonight - she got 20 percent of the votes.
Seacrest also brings Matt Breitzke and Jesse Langseth to center stage, then demands "Idol" judge Randy Jackson guess which of the three is headed for the Stemware of Massive Opportunity. Randy guesses Allison. Randy called it right! (WaPo TeamTV's Totally Unscientific Poll also called it right!) Allison looks shocked while Jesse and Matt feign being thrilled for her -- just like Angelina Jolie, Meryl Streep, Anne Hathaway, and Melissa Leo did a few short days earlier when Kate Winslet won the Oscar for best actress instead of them, only without all the jewels and designer evening gowns.
"I'm just so friggin' happy right now," Allison gushes as she is sent to the Stemware Stools of Massive Opportunity.
Next, Seacrest brings Megan Corkrey, Kris Allen, Matt Girard, and Jeanine Vailes to center stage. This time, Seacrest makes "Idol" judge Paula Abdul guess which of the four has just bought a ticket to the stools.
Paula can't decide between Megan, Matt and Kris. Seacrest, ever the gentleman, realizes Jeanine has been singled out and not in a good way and sends her back to the bleachers to sit down. Matt is next to get the bad news,
Seacrest asks Kara what she thinks about the remaining two, Kris and Megan. Kara begins to gush over Kris and his fabulousness during Hollywood Week -- which might have been something the "Idol" producers might have wanted to show viewers a glimpse of, so the remarks would be less bewildering.
Kara can't stop talking about Kris and his guitar in Hollywood and the clock is ticking so Simon starts dropping hints she's running long, hints like "she's rambling" and "take your time." But Kara, who apparently did not get the memo that tonight's results show is not three hours long, has fallen so deeply in love with her stream of thought that, instead of taking Simon's hint, snaps at him that she is "actually giving advice" which, she says, is part of what she's been hired to do. Sweet, naïve Kara.
Kara then turns her attention to Megan and begins to fawn all over her and her uniqueness and her with-the-right-song-you-could-be-big-ness."
"Let me take it from here," Seacrest rushes in to say when Kara finally is forced to stop long enough to take a breath.
He sends Kris to the stemware stools, which means Megan is out - at least until the end of next week when the judges can bring back some of the booted Idolettes on Wild Card Night.
We get live Kris as cruise ship Michael Jackson all over again. It never gets old.
Because the producers note there is not one wet eye in the house after Kris's triumph, they wisely decide to re-show the treacly American Idol Over the Years video, while Louis Armstrong sings "It's a Wonderful World." Yup, it does the trick - Crazy Little Girl is weeping over Sanjaya Malakar from last season; Fantasia Barinno is gushing; Jordin Sparks is bawling; Kelly Clarkson is sobbing - even David Cook is choked up.
And then, just when we're at our most vulnerable, the producers bring back last season's scariest Idolette ever, Nanny Brooke!
Nanny Brooke sings a song she says she co-wrote, in which she tries hard to imagine what life would be like were she not as young and hot and blonde as she is now.
Having pulled that dirty trick on us, the producers wisely plow through the remaining five Idolettes still waiting for word of their fate.
Seacrest brings Mishavonna Henson, Kai Kalama, Nick/Normund, Adam Lambert and Jasmine Murray to center stage.
Mishavonna, Kai and Jasmine are quickly put out of their misery, leaving just Adam and Nick/Normund - the Gilbert and Sullivan of "American Idol."
"Simon, did you really go home and pray?" Seacrest asks Simon, who said Wednesday he prays Nick/Normund doesn't make it through to the next round of the competition.
We, of course, know Simon's wish will be granted because the WaPo TeamTV Totally Unscientific Poll had Adam way out in front with 56 percent of the votes. But Simon has not seen the poll and acknowledges he prayed the previous night for about five or six hours. God smiles on Simon and Nick/Normund is indeed sent packing while Adam is headed to the Stemware Stools of Massive Opportunity. Adam pretends he's really surprised for a nanosecond, and then launches into his biggest, campiest "Satisfaction" ever -- at the end of which Simon promises a couple of tonight's rejected Idolettes will be brought back on Wild Card Night. That means you, Megan.
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