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American Idol, February 4: Nobody’s Perfectby Sting7 -- 02/05/2004
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Last night, we watched 117 become 79. Tonight, the group audition, as usual, separates the contenders from the pretenders – with many, many surprises along the way.
Fantasia Burrino predicts she’s not going home.
Michael Keown is sure he’ll finish top three.
Simon predicts 90% will forget the words, most won’t sing in tune, and the day will be a “musical car-wreck.”
The contestants seem to have embraced their group dynamics, they even came up with names. “Divas In Red,” “The Bleached Blondes,” “Surburban Funk,” that was special. The Roman brothers (not twins, thanks for the corrections) are still in competition, mainly with each other!
Simon warns the contestants before the group auditions, “Don’t forget the words,” but those words would ring hollow. The Hawaii triumvirate of Sonny Kapu, Joseph Moananu, and Clifford Iokia sing a harmonious “Up On The Roof.” Randy says the harmonies were better than the leads (especially Clifford, who has not solved that singing-through-the-nose habit).
The Bleached Blondes – Michael Keown, John Proctor, and Matthew Metzger – are all over the place. Randy says it sounded like a “bad Love Boat performance.” Simon favors them with an “absolutely ghastly.” Inexplicably, Pick to Click Michael Keown feels the need to clarify that he has been excellent up to this point! Knock it off, Michael!
Despite Simon’s warning, we see some of our favorites losing lyrics, like Noel Roman, Pick to Click Alan Ritchson, Pick to Click Eric Yoder, Pick to Click Donnie Williams, and Bao Viet Nguyen. (My Picks to Click are struggling today!) Noel mumbles to the camera that he “doesn’t know what happened.“
Jesus Roman expresses his disappointment with brother Noel, before forgetting his lyrics himself. Jesus is still also stinging from his partners Pick to Click Matt (not Mark) Rogers and George Huff going to bed when he still wanted to rehearse. Ironically, only Jesus forgets his words, and he immediately kvetches it’s because he was up all night practicing. To the cameras, Matt says he doesn’t appreciate the submarine job Jesus tried. Matt says even though he didn’t have the best performance, at least he and George remembered their lyrics, so who screwed up?
Jeremy Worker (we haven’t met him before), Terrance Gaines, and young crooning John Stevens IV also struggle. There’s more drama. The previously unmet Meleana has deserted her group, Courtni Davis and Janine Davis. The unrelated Davis’ look for her, Meleana stumbles across them, then heads the other way. What the hell?
Elizabeth LeTendre, Dina Lopez, and Leah Vladowski say they have been trained by Leah’s mother, a bona fide Bulgarian pop star of the ‘70s, she says unabashedly. Mom Vladowski clearly knows her cotton because Elizabeth, Dina, and Leah burn the stage up with “Young Hearts Run Free!” All three judges are effusive with praise. Simon says he can foresee an all-female Top 12!
Nicole Tieri confesses that she is worried about Lana Philips, because she isn’t as vocally strong as Nicole, Amy Adams, and Sara Logan (girlfriend of “I’m Too Sexy” Sergey, if you recall). When they perform “Tell Him,” Lana sticks out like the proverbial sore thumb. Randy can only ask her, “What’s up?” Simon thinks Lana was “dreadful,” Amy and Nicole were “too theatrical,” he only liked Sara.
The girls aren’t all sugar and spice, however. Jasmine Artega, Pick To Click Fantasia Burrino, and Pick To Click Jennifer Hudson all forget words to their songs! What will happen to them?
We’re about to find out. Ryan Seacrest says after two days and 11 hours of auditioning, it takes the judges just ten minutes to decide who is moving on – and who isn’t.
The contestants are brought out in groups of eight or nine. Some are asked to step forward. Those stepping forward could be going home, or advancing, the contestants (and sometimes the judges, it seems) are never sure.
Immediately, we see Hawaii firefighter Clifford Iokia get cut. The “old-looking” George Huff and Matt Rogers (who was in the back row, and suddenly asked to step forward) are advancing! Pick to Click Dreah Hancock’s dream of a pink T-bird is over. Bao Viet Nguyen’s father tearfully expressed his pride in his son’s opportunity, but Bao Viet and that beautiful pure voice are also going home. We are also saying goodbye to Jasmine Artega, the mysterious Meleana, and her estranged partners Cortni Davis and Janine Davis. The forgetful Lana Philips is also excused.
And, the biggest surprise, but maybe not under the circumstances, Pick to Click Michael Keown, who Simon said sang the best rendition of “Unchained Melody” he’d ever heard, is also excused. Michael, again, feels the need to speak up. He doesn’t understand how this could be when Simon said what Simon said (all with this creepy little love-me smile on his face – ugh!). Simon says he meant it, and Michael did get far in the process, but he “didn’t stand out.” Not sure what defense one could have for that.1 2 Next-->
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