Thursday, March 8, 2012
AI Season 11 Top 13 Elimination, 03-08-12
We start with clips from last week, as though we don't already know who the Top 13 are, or that they're each really excited about putting themselves through the meat grinder of this show.
Ryan says that tonight is the only time that the Judges will choose who goes home. I hope he means it.
Speaking of Ryan, he's wearing The Tie of Elimination, and his hair has reached Ricky Martin heights. Randy is wearing a normal shirt tonight, with a wildly striped tie, and a red sweater with contrasting sleeves. Steven is wearing a purple jacket and snakeskin pants (maybe he raided Skylar's closet). JLo is is wearing a slim beige belted dress with a plunging neckline. And by plunging, I mean totally nonexistent. I'm hoping she made liberal use of double sided tape or we're going to get more than an alleged nipslip.
Group Sing!!! Jeremy starts weakly. Followed by Heejun, Jermaine, Deandre, Joshua, Jessica, Hollie, Erika, Elise, Shannon, Skylar, Colton, and Phil, each one singing an equally weak solo in turn. This bunch can't dance. They can't harmonize either. I don't know this song, but I assume it's from the Wonder oeuvre, and it seems to be long. Very very long. It's good that we already know that some of these kids can sing really really well, because there's no proof of it in this performance. And they didn't even give us a Pointy Pose.
Dear Ford: Inarticulate Real People are far less interesting than you think they are, no matter what causes their tongue-tied-ness.
The kids sit on the couch, delighted to watch the first Fordmercial of the year. They enjoy seeing giant versions of themselves stomping around and over city buildings. I'm sad they didn't crush a car or two.
Jimmy Iovine gets a special slice of airtime to inform us that it's hard for anyone to sing Whitney Houston songs properly. He Captain Obvious-es that Stevie Wonder ain't no walk in the park, neither.
We get to the business of the evening (well, outside of the business of gathering ratings, and wasting time). Ryan calls down Jessica (black leather bustier over a gathered gray skirt, black bootie stilettos... boolettos? stilooties?), Elise (shapeless red mullet skirt, baggy blue top, stupid hat), and Hollie (prim red dress).
Iovine commentary: It was not Elise's night, Hollie delivered, and Jessica gave maybe the best AI performance. Ever.
Ryan dims the lights, and then wastes no time in sending Jessica to safety (the least suspenseful save ever). He dawdles bit longer and then tells Elise that she's one of the Bottom 3 Girls. He sends her to the Silver Stools of Sadness.
Next, Ryan calls Heejun (blue and white striped tee under a blue blazer), Jermaine (a nice green and white cardigan), and Colton (all in black, and with more stupid hair).
Iovine commentary: Heejun showed all of his vocal flaws in this song, Jermaine fought a battle with the song and overthought it, Colton is not sure what kind of singer he wants to be.
Ryan dims the lights again, and screws with Colton for a bit before sending him to safety. And then he tells Jermaine that he's in the bottom three. Jermaine joins Elise.
JLo is awarded precious air time to plug her new show, the one where she searches for Latin talent with the re-animated corpse of her ex-husband. From the commercials, it looks excruciatingly awkward.
Lauren Alaina (last year's Runner Up) is here to sing her new song, Georgia Peach (or maybe Georgia Peaches). Dressed in a one-shouldered, red top with teeny gold sparkly stripes, over black leggings, she looks 17 going on 32. She stomps around the stage, and something appears to go wrong with her earpiece. She fiddles with it, pulls it out of her ear (singing all the while), and then demonstrates a fundamental misunderstanding of basic physics when she flings the earpiece, still attached to a 12" cord, over her shoulder, only to have it rebound and smack her in the middle of the forehead. Good stuff, that.
Next up are Skylar (in metallic silver. All metallic silver), Erika (print pants and a sloppy off-the-shoulder white tunic), and Shannon (gray sack dress with a hip bow).
Iovine Commentary: likes Skylar, is impressed with Erika but she needs a better presentation (translation: get that girl to a stylist. Stat!), and Shannon's nerves won.
Ryan sends Erika to the Bottom 3 to join Elise (BOOOO!!!!), and then in short order, tells Shannon to join Erika.
Finally Phil (sloppy green tee shirt), Jeremy (white shirt, red tie), Joshua (blue cardigan with gold patch pockets), and Deandre (in stripes), come down.
Iovine Commentary: Phil knows who he is which is good, but the competition from the girls will be tough, Jeremy did not deliver, Joshua is too one-note, and Deandre was surprisingly good.
Whoops! JLo nearly fell out of her dress!
Phil is safe (another one of those no-suspense announcements). Jeremy is in the Bottom 3. Deandre fell for Ryan's ruse, but he's safe, which means that Joshua is in the bottom.
So it's Elise, Erika, and Shannon for the Girls as the lowest vote-getters, and Jermaine, Jeremy and Joshua for the guys ( three blondes, and three J's). Ryan immediately sends Erika and Joshua back to safety. YAY! Or at least one-half of a Yay!
Before the final announcement, Mary J. Blige sings. She was a good mentor last night, and I hope she comes back. Last night she had Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy hair, and tonight it's all Betty Grable. She's wearing a dark, tailored suit with Buck Rogers shoulder pads, and no shirt under the vest. She's wearing some sort of studded choker collar that trails down the center of her chest, to her waistline. It must be AI's night for wonky earpieces- MJB removes hers too, though she has enough sense just to let it hang.
Oh, the song? It's okay. Nothing that I'd go out and buy, but not terrible. She gets a Standing O, though it's possible that JLo and Randy had to be told to stand- they were a little slow to rise.
Okay, so we're down to Jeremy and Jermaine, and Shannon and Elise. Ryan asks Steven who should go home, and Steven bluntly names Jeremy. No explanation, no apology, no soft-soaping the news. Very unusual for this show.
Ryan sends Jermaine back to safety. Jermaine, who may be lacking a filter entirely, doesn't even pretend to be concerned for Jeremy. He whoops in celebration. Ryan dithers a bit, and then sends Shannon to safety. Shannon is shocked, and maybe not entirely happy to have been spared.
The judges mumblemumblemumblemumble as they decide who to save. The verdict? Elise is staying, and Jeremy is going home.
Jeremy has a nice voice, and he seems like a genuinely nice guy. I enjoyed his performances, but he wasn't going to win. I'm okay with this one. So now we're left with 6/6- next week will be interesting.