This season of “American Idol” has been full of gimmicks, and last week showcased the worst one of all. The judges’ choice. Simon Cowell decided to save Matt Giraud, and I single out Simon because his is the only opinion of any value. Sorry Paula Abdul. Then there was the addition of another judge, basically a preemptive move to replace Paula. Producers have been gambling with format changes, none of which have yet to payoff.
So, when Ryan Seacrest announced that this week would be used to showcase disco songs, all signs pointed to yet another fail on behalf of “Idol’s” creatives. However, not withstanding a few typical duds, the 70s melodies were kind to most of the remaining contestants. What I wouldn’t have paid to see Ryan sporting a white suit ala John Travolta.
Each week gets a little darker for Lil Rounds as she borders on high-class karaoke artist. And her foray into disco with “I’m Every Woman” was no exception, despite the number getting Paula on her feet. That woman is bound to go up and down for just about anyone.
Kris Allen pulled out his guitar to sing Ryan Seacrest’s anthem, “She Works Hard For Her Money.” Kudos to the kid for making the song his own, but must he turn every week into a Jason Mraz homage? To his credit, he does it with ease. But the last thing iTunes needs is another vanilla offering.
These last few shows have been kind to Danny Gokey. I’ve finally warmed to his rasp, and with Earth, Wind & Fire’s “September,” he should easily earn a place in next week’s competition. Yet, Simon’s note on the clumsy stage presence was spot on. That’s one of the many factors that separates Danny from “Idol’s” already-ordained winner, Adam Lambert.
It’s officially time for every other contestant to throw in the towel, because nothing can stop Adam at this point. “If I Can’t Have You” brought Paula to tears, although that’s not a challenge, but it got Simon to call the performance “immaculate.” Abdul is drooling as is the music industry.
Sparkly leather. Fire red hair. Allison Iraheta’s getup definitely lived up to her song choice this week, “Hot Stuff.” The resident baby rocker, Allison always finds a way to entertain. And a riff at the end sent her over the top.
Holy jeebus, Matt was resurrected from the dead only to deliver another funky white boy performance. This go around it was with the song “Stayin’ Alive.” Can he sing? Yes. Did Matt learn from his near ouster last week? No. It was more of the same and with two singers going home, he deserves the axe one more time.
Ending the night was Anoop Desai, a performer I am so done with. Adequate is the best way to describe him. And, to be honest, until Ryan announced Anoop, I forgot he was still in the competition. Lil Rounds, Anoop and Matt should be battling it out in the bottom three tonight.
Photos by Michael Becker / FOX