American Idol 2, April 30: Love Won't Keep Us Togetherby David Bloomberg -- 05/01/2003
Ryan Seacrest begins another hour-long Results Show. However, never let it be said that the producers can't laugh at themselves. Ryan notes that the signs are getting more creative and points to one that says, "Get to the Results!" "Don't be ridiculous," Ryan says. We have an hour together. Yes, we know.
But they do manage to fill it pretty well. No stupid questions from the audience, for example. Instead, we will see Justin Guarini, Tamyra Gray, Burt Bacharach, we'll visit the X2 premiere, and then, Ryan notes, we'll kick someone off.
So he introduces the judges and contestants - the latter, he says, were stuck in an elevator just a few minutes before the show. Ah, the perils of a live show. He says viewers voted in the millions. Hmmm. No record, not even a number. Just "in the millions."
We have a recap of what happened last night, but if you want to know what happened, you can just read my recap from last night's show.
Last night, one of the songs they each sang was from the '60s, so the final five perform a medley of '60s songs. All do well… except, well, Josh. And don't even get me started on his attempts to dance a little during the first part. He looked like the stereotype of a bad white boy dancing. It just wasn't pretty.
After that performance, it's time for Burt Bacharach to return. As we all know, he recorded "What the World Need Now Is Love" with the top 10 for the AI2 CD (you can read my review of the CD here). To make sure the song is filled out, they bring back "four familiar faces." Hmmm. I'm doing the math in my head. There are five now. Four more. That's only nine. Wonder who they didn--- oh. Yeah. I guess they didn't invite Corey back. Never mind. Anyway, the performance is a bit more interesting than the CD version, probably because we can actually watch them.
From there we skip to an embedded commercial in which "Do You Believe in Magic?" plays as Ruben and Josh make a Ford appear and then change, with Clay then getting out of it. Moving on.
Now it's time for a visit with Tamyra Gray on the set of Boston Public, where she has a recurring role. Well, actually, "now" is a relative term, since Kimberly Caldwell and Carmen Rasmusen are still with the group. So I guess it was actually a couple weeks ago. Anyway, Tamyra tells them that after AI, anything is possible - even if you are voted off before somebody with significantly less talent. OK, she didn't actually say that last part. But you know she wanted to.
Then we move from fourth place to second (thankfully skipping third) in last year's show, inviting Justin Guarini to the stage. The women in the crowd go wild. Even Kelly Clarkson is in the crowd - must be interesting being on the other side of the stage.
Ryan asks what Justin has been up to. Well, he is readying his new album, due in stores June 10 (which you can order from Amazon.com even though it doesn't have an official title yet). He has been working with people like Babyface and The Underdogs (some of the same people who worked on Kelly's album, and who have also been working with Tamyra). So, Ryan asks, what really happened with him and Kelly? Justin responds that they made a movie together! Heh. Then he says they are just friends. Kelly yells from the audience to Ryan, "You just never give up!"
Justin sings "I Saw Your Face" from the upcoming album. It's a ballad with a nice, kinda R&B beat to it. He starts off nicely and just gets better as it goes. He even gives the trademarked Justin sideways glance at the camera that so many women grew to love last season.
Jumping back to the current contestants, we're still not ready for results. Instead, it's time for a movie premiere! The final five are whisked to the premiere of X2, limo and all. There they meet all sorts of stars, like Alice Cooper, Franie Munoz, David Hasselhoff, etc. Hey, there's Kim Caldwell doing reporting duties! And after it's done, they plug the movie like some man-on-the-street commercial.
Finally it's time for some results. Now we're only doing the bottom two instead of bottom three. Kim is safe. Hmmm. OK, so that means Trenyce and Josh must be in the bottom two. Clay is safe. Duh. Trenyce is next and you automatically know she's in the bottom two 'cus otherwise it would mean both Josh and Ruben would be and that would eliminate the tension they are trying to provide. Indeed, Trenyce is in the bottom two. No problem, Josh will be joining her there and then he'll be leaving, right?
After reading through judge comments for both Josh and Ruben, Ryan announces that Ruben is in the bottom two! The audience boos. Simon mouths, "What?!" I don't know that I've ever seen him this stunned. Josh drops his head into his hands. He knows he shouldn't still be sitting on the couch while Ruben is in the bottom two.
Ryan asks for the judges' opinions, and oh boy does he get some! Randy says it's crazy! They're trying to find the best people, and that kid (Ruben) up there is brilliant!
Paula says Trenyce and Ruben should be laughing hysterically. It's ridiculous.
Simon says that he said enough last night. Perhaps he realizes that he threw down the gauntlet to Josh fans in saying Josh wasn't good enough to stick around? And those fans obviously picked it up and smacked us all with it. Anyway, he says that we have to respect the viewer decision because it's all subjective. He doesn't mean any disrespect, but he hopes the right one (that would be code for "Ruben") stays.
OK, here are my thoughts before we move forward. Is it surprising that Ruben is in the bottom two? Frankly, no. I wouldn't have necessarily predicted it, but nor am I shocked. Why? Because Ruben's fans have never been tested. He has gotten by on pure talent while the other fans have had to pull out all the stops to keep their favorites around. I got a number of e-mails from people about how they tossed a lot of votes to Trenyce or Kimberley. Not a single e-mail from anybody who voted for Ruben. After all, he's great, right? He's safe. He's going to win, or at least come in second. So people vote for the ones in "danger," like the two women. Problem is, that put Ruben in danger. And here he is.
Unfortunately, Ryan immediately plays right into the problem by telling viewers to remember to vote for your favorite to make sure they stick around. How about we vote for the best person instead of our "favorite" one? Sigh.
Both of the bottom two get to sing a song before the announcement. Trenyce performs "Proud Mary" while Ruben chooses "Breaking Up Is Hard to Do."
Finally, the time is here. Ruben… is safe. Trenyce is going home. I hear Phil Kural screaming at his TV all the way from here.
Trenyce's smile never breaks. She thanks everybody, especially Paula for bringing her through as her wildcard pick. Then she sings us to the credits with "Love Will Keep Us Together."
Or perhaps it won't…
I'd like to end this by announcing that we have officially found our Nikki of the second season. For a while I thought it was going to be Carmen, but she actually got voted out. That leaves only Josh. Mind you, he's not quite a Nikki as he seems to be an all-around better person (yeah, so I'm judgmental, sue me), but we seem to have the same situation: A person with much less singing ability is continuing forward in this competition at the expense of others solely because that person has a huge fan base who continually votes for them no matter how bad they are.
The worst part, though, is that I think Joshua really feels bad about it.
David Bloomberg is the Editor of RealityNewsOnline and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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