American Idol 4, February 28: Drop It Like It’s Hot!by Donna Reynolds -- 03/01/2005
Sting was unavoidably delayed tonight, and I have stepped in to cover the show in his absence. Don’t worry, he’ll be back for ladies’ night. In the meantime, let’s get this party started.
Ryan opens the show by reminding us that the pressure is on, and it’s time for us to take control. By way of apology, he tells us this is the first show since the most dramatic and emotional results show they have ever had. They all felt it, he tells us. Yeah, I wonder if that means that they felt the enormous backlash that echoed throughout North America last Wednesday night?
It’s Boys’ Night, and Ryan introduces the “dudes” who are, understandably, nervous. He then introduces the judges, and asks them what they are looking for tonight. Randy is expecting them to “bring it on,” and Paula says she is looking for showmanship and unique personality. Simon and Ryan banter a bit, and a giggling Ryan asks Simon if he has picked out the person who he thinks can win. He has. Then, it’s on with the show.
Mario Vasquez - “I Love Music”
Randy – “Love the shoes… good performance, but I want to hear more of that voice.”
Paula – “Picked another good song… consistent… keep wanting more, more, more Mario. You got it going on.”
Simon – “You got it absolutely right. You look like you’ve been doing this for years, and you don’t need any advice from us.” (Mario interrupts and says he wants advice!)
Donna - This is a baritone song, and Mario is not a baritone. But he has great energy and the audience loved it. He can definitely mask any little vocal problems with his performing skills and winning smile.
Anwar Robinson – “What’s Goin’ On? ”
Randy – “You worked it out, baby. That was really, really good.”
Paula – “You stepped it up a notch…Technically the best vocalist, I do believe.”
Simon – “What you did today was a risk, and I would be amazed if it didn’t sound great watching it back.” (This after telling him that on watching last week’s performance back, he didn’t like it nearly as much as he did when he saw it live.)
Donna - Whew is right! Anwar jazzed up this classic tune and brought it home with some nice dance moves. He really did work it out and was fun to watch. Outstanding.
Joseph Murena – “Let’s Stay Together”
Randy – “You were having a good time. It was good but I’m still waiting for one note, one run… I’m not blown away.”
Paula – “You really brought it up from last week. Much better.”
Simon – Agrees with Randy and says, “It’s 2005, and if I’m being honest, we could have been in a Portuguese nightclub in 1974.” He doesn’t see the relevance and would be amazed if Joseph lasts another two weeks. (Audience boos.)
Donna – Joseph has a great voice, and I love the way he begged this song!! He was pitch perfect too. Plus he is really cute! I’d say he’s the most manly man I’ve ever seen on this show!
David Brown – “All in Love is Fair”
Randy – “Better than last week, still not your best. Just okay dude.”
Paula – “Better than last week, but the best is yet to come out of you. We saw it early on.”
Simon – “You left whatever sparkle behind, and you haven’t brought it to this part of he competition.” Simon reminds him that this is a competition, and that there are guys who are better than he is.
Donna – David started out as flat as a pancake and was all over the place vocally. I love this song, too, but although he finished strong, it just wasn’t good enough.
Constantine Maroulis – “Hard to Handle”
Randy – “Yo man at least you had a really good time, and chose a better song… I liked you this week better than last.”
Paula – “This is your niche… great week for you.” (She is beaming and the girls are still screaming.)
Simon – “I could go to any bar across America and find somebody of the same caliber as you and it wouldn’t excite me.”
Donna – He was off too. Although he tossed in some screaming to prove he is indeed a rocker, I was not particularly impressed by his vocals. He sure got the girls going, though.
Scott Savol – “Never Too Much”
Randy – “Better song choice, it was all right.”
Paula – “You brought it on… great job!
Simon – “I have to agree with Paula, and you’re looking great.”
Donna - Taking on Luther? Wow. Talk about a risk. But Scott sang the heck out of this song, and even did the swallowing thing, just like Luther. His stock just went up about 200 percent in my book! Scott makes up for his lack of looks by bringing a degree of sensuality to his vocals. I stand by my claim that he is the best vocalist in the group.
Travis Tucker – “All Night Long”
Randy – “Big props for at least coming back to us… song wasn’t the most challenging, but you worked it out… 100 percent improvement.”
Paula – “Ditto. I’m proud of you.”
Simon – “This is why we put you through… you’re a born performer.” Simon actually apologizes to Travis for his comments last week, and tells him that he thought it was much better when he watched the replay.
Donna - Travis was on fire tonight. I love, love, love his dance moves, and that he didn’t lose his groove. Is this guy cute, or what? Look at you Travis, up there dancing like Usher. His vocals weren’t quite as amazing as his dancing, but who cares!
Nikko Smith – “Let’s Get it On”
Randy – “It doesn’t matter what song you sing, you gotta sing it. You worked it out baby.”
Paula – Can’t even speak.
Simon – “1000 percent improvement. My only downside is that you’re looking like Bobby Brown!”
Donna - Oh, yes, yes, yes. Vocally, he was a little disjointed, but he was so into this song and sang it so convincingly that any blips were easy to forgive.
Anthony Fedorov – “I Want to Know What Love Is”
Randy – “In the end, you brought it home.”
Paula – “Towards the end, you kicked into a different gear.”
Simon – “I think you did a fantastic job.”
Donna – This was a solid performance and certainly Idol worthy. After a bit of a tight start, he burst out with an amazing choral run. Anthony has a great tone to his voice and modulates beautifully. I liked it, and so did the girls!
Bo Bice – “Whipping Post”
Randy – “Love the outfit, love the song, I love you, I love you singing the Allman Brothers. Dude, that was the bomb.”
Paula – “Everything that comes out of your pores is authentic. You are the real deal, Bo. I am so proud to be a part of this show.”
Simon – “Every year at this stage of the competition, we had it last year with Fantasia and LaToya, somebody comes on the stage and does something so fantastic that it just blows you away. Tonight was the first time that’s happened (this season).”
Donna – When Bo started singing, I shouted out, “Yeah.” I whooped and wooo hooooed, and then I began to wonder if somehow, the channel had mysteriously changed by itself, and I was watching something other than American Idol. I still can’t believe what I just saw. This was one of the most amazing Idol performances I have ever seen. Bo Bice, you just bought yourself a ticket to the top 12. No doubt.
No matter who is voted off this week, it is going to be heartbreaking. These guys absorbed what they learned last week and brought it tonight, big time. Not only that, they picked some of my personal favorites to sing tonight. Wow! I don’t think it’s a stretch to say that, overall, this was the bestAmerican Idol performance show I have ever seen, especially at this stage of the game.
For me, the big winner tonight was Bo, followed by Scott and Anwar. Anthony and Mario tied for fourth, with Joseph in fifth place. Then it gets tricky. So, twist my arm, and force me to choose. I really don’t want to. But two guys have to go, and on the basis of tonight alone, I would say those two should be David and Constantine. Joseph, Nikko, and Travis were better overall.
The girls are going to have to really go the distance to top this show. Can they do it? We’ll see tomorrow.
Donna Reynolds is an Assistant Editor for the RealityNewsOnline family of websites and a freelance writer based in Syracuse, NY. She is also the creator of “That’s Entertainment,” a weblog on syracuse.com. Whether you agree or disagree, Donna welcomes your comments, and you can email her at email@example.com.
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