American Idol 11: The Cut to 13

So to recap… the people I sort-of-predicted would make the final 13:

Girls: Chelsea, Erika, Skylar, Jessica, Haley
Guys: Reed, Colton, Chase, Joshua, Jermaine
Judges’ options: Shannon*, Elise*, Hollie, Phillip*, Deandre
*I’ll give these three the best chance of getting wildcarded.

Now, let’s see how wrong I can be, as we spend 2 hours doing a 5-minute task… we should note that Eben and Haley were the VFTW choices, so let’s keep an eye on them, too…

THIS… is American Idol!

Wow… only 33 million votes?  They’ve done better…

First cut comes at 8:10pm:

  • Chase, Phillip, and Jeremy get the first call to center stage.
    • Looks like the padding will be copious interviews, montages, judges’ babbling, and the utterly-corrupt Jimmy Iovine’s bloviating.  I’ve got one word for Jimmy: STFU.
    • Jeremy Rosado is not in the Top 10.
    • Chase Likens is not in the Top 10.
    • Phillip Phillips is the first finalist (I had him as a wildcard).
  • Jessica, Hollie, Brielle, and Hallie get the call.
    • More padding.
    • Brielle Von Hugel is not in the Top 10.
    • Two of the remaining three are finalists.
    • Hallie Day is not in the Top 10.
    • Jessica Sanchez and Hollie Cavanagh are finalists (I had Jessica in and Hollie one of the last two out – 2 from 3 so far isn’t bad, right?)

If this is the pace the whole show is going to take, with no live performances, someone at FOX is going to be tempted to shoot Nigel Lythgoe.

  • Joshua, Heejun, and Adam get the call.
    • More padding.  I’m thinking that Jimmy Iovine’s arrogant bombast might have been more appreciated on the live shows where the singers probably wanted an honest critique, even from a crook like Iovine.
    • Joshua Ledet is a finalist (I had him in – 3 from 4).
    • Inexplicably, Heejun Han is a finalist (3 from 5).
    • Adam Brock is not in the Top 10.
  • Baylie, Chelsea, Skylar, and Shannon get the call, and my picks are in big trouble.  4 girls left after this.
    • I have three of these through, 2 as Top 10 and one as a wildcard.  I don’t think the math works out for me.
    • Shannon Magrane is a finalist (I had her as a wildcard, 4 from 6).
    • Skylar Laine is a finalist (5 from 7).  That’s 4 girls through.
    • Baylie Brown and Chelsea Sorrell are not in the Top 10.

They appear to be building to two sets of 4 with one of each set going through… but we’re moving a little faster than expected.  45 minutes in, 7 finalists.  3 more voted finalists and 3 wild cards to go in the next 1:15?  I have a feeling we’ve got more singing ahead of us tonight…

  • Aaron, Creighton, and Reed get the call.  4 guys left who haven’t been paged.
    • Only one of these guys will go through, as they have to leave one seat open for the last 4.
    • Aaron Marcellus is not in the Top 10.
    • Creighton Fraker is not in the Top 10.
    • Surprise… Reed Grimm is not in the Top 10.  Two spots remain for 4 guys.
  • Elise, Erika, Haley, and Jen get the last call for the girls. 
    • There’s one seat left among these four ladies.  Both of the Adele cover performances are in this cut.
    • Haley Johnsen is not in the Top 10.  VFTW takes a hit.
    • Erika Van Pelt is not in the Top 10. 
    • Uh oh.  My picks are taking a beating.
    • Elise Testone is a finalist (I had her as a wildcard – 6 from 8).
    • Interesting that my three Wildcard picks are through… but not my Top 10 picks…
    • Jen Hirsh is not in the Top 10.
  • Last call for the guys: Deandre, Eben, Colton, and Jermaine.
    • Two of them are in.
    • The commercial break is not in the Top 10.  But, of course, it was inserted here.

We come out of this break at 9:03pm with the last two Top 10 seats about to be filled.  There is absolutely no doubt that Hour #2 is a Sing For Your Life hour.

    • Back from break with another Q&A and montage.  Please… SOMEONE tell me why this is a two-hour show… I can only hope that FOX takes a massive beating in the ratings so they never pull this stunt again.
    • Deandre Brackensick is not in the Top 10.
    • Colton Dixon (after an attempted swerve) is a finalist (7 from 9).
    • Jermaine Jones, to nobody’s surprise, is a finalist (8 from 10).
    • Lil’ Bieber Eben Franckewitz is not in the Top 10.

Remember how it was “each judge picks a wildcard”?  LIES.  The judges will now pick 6 singers to sing for the remaining three spots.  After this break, of course…

Back for the Wild Six Shootout:

Jen Hirsh (Randy) – “Oh! Darling” by the Beatles
The judges clearly want her to come through… this performance might be enough, with a soulful and entertaining cover of the Beatles’ Abbey Road album track.

Another break, and then back to the Wild Six Shootout (and I should trademark that name)…

Jeremy Rosado (Jennifer) – “I Know You Won’t” by Carrie Underwood
Wow.  Epic fail.  Wrong song, bad start, and I’m pretty sure he’s blown the chance.  Well, with J-Lo crying at the judges’ table, maybe not. 

Brielle Von Hugel (Steven) – “Someone Like You” by Adele
Are you kidding?  Idol is burned out on Adele, and she comes out with a shaky Adele cover to save herself?  If the judges put her through, it won’t be for her performances this week.

Halfway through, and I think Jen is through.  The other two are in trouble.

Deandre Brackensick (Randy) – “Georgia On My Mind” by Ray Charles
I don’t know… his voice is all over the place, it’s a screechy mess, but frankly, this kind of performance has historically been catnip for the judges.  I didn’t like it, but one of the judges may use it as an excuse to fish him out of the Wild Six.

Erika Van Pelt (Jennifer) – “Edge of Glory” by Lady GaGa
Finally, one of my picks gets a lifeline… interesting choice, slowing down Lady G’s signature track… but damned if she didn’t pull it off.  I think she has to go through on this performance.

Give me Jen and Erika and whoever the last Wild Six performer is… nine singers will be eliminated after this… break.

Reed Grimm (Steven) is selected.  Aaron, Adam, Baylie, Chase, Chelsea, Creighton, Eben (sorry, VFTW), Haley, and Hallie are eliminated.  I lose 3 of my picks.

Reed Grimm – “Use Me” by Bill Withers
This song is perfect for his voice and style.  And yes, he did exactly what I expected – an entertaining, if not pitch-perfect, rendition.  He deserves to go through.

The choice, to me, is obvious – Jen, Erika, and Reed were by far better than the other three.  Whoever gets through, keep an eye on them, as the program is heavily invested in them…Time to fill the last three seats… after the break…

  • With the first pick in the Wild Six, Randy selects Erika Van Pelt (9 from 11).
  • With the second pick in the Wild Six, Jennifer screws up and selects Jeremy Rosado (9 from 12).  I have no doubt Jennifer’s selection was based on a factor other than talent.  I’ll leave it at that – and remind you that her Latino talent show starts Saturday.  Ahem.
  • With the third pick in the Wild Six, Steven for some reason selects Deandre Brackensick (9 from 13). 
  • Brielle, Jen, and Reed have been eliminated.

Your finalists (*my picks): Colton*, Deandre, Elise*, Erika*, Heejun, Hollie, Jeremy, Jermaine*, Jessica*, Joshua*, Phillip*, Shannon*, and Skylar*.  From this field, if America gives her a chance, Skylar’s my morning-line favorite.

Next week, a split theme – the guys cover Stevie Wonder, the girls honor Whitney Houston, and Mary J. Blige is in the house.  See you Wednesday night!

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Author: Rob Hoffmann

Occasional blogger, full-time computer techie, radio producer (basketball, mostly), improv tech guy, generally nice person (if you ask me).

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