Wednesday, January 17, 2007

American Idol Night 2: Seattle

It's time for two full hours of American Idol, in the sense of forty-five minutes of actual show, and an hour and fifteen minutes of commercials.

Ryan looks like he's wearing a Def Leppard shirt under that blazer. Who knows? I wonder how much the clothing designers pay for him to wear what he does.

So, since Seattle was such a bust the first time, they had to try it again. Naturally, it's raining, because, surprise! it's Seattle.

Brandon Groves showed up last year as a policeman. He is actually a police officer, and from all records I found on the internet, he's a darned good one. As a singer, though, he makes a much better cop. This year he decides to do the tired schtick with the Uncle Sam outfit. You know, the one that somebody does every single stinking year?? Ok, look, I get the need for attention, be it negative or positive. But aren't there cop groupies out there? Is he really this starved for attention? Surely he can bag the chicks some other way. Ryan asks if they took him seriously, not a trace of irony in his voice, but the only things that ever takes Brandon seriously are his handcuffs, which unfortunately don't restrain his mouth.

The only thing worse than a hottie who thinks she's all that is a Nottie that thinks the same. Jennifer Chapton is not in any way attractive, though you can't tell her that. She'd take at least a case of beer, a few shots of tequila, and an eightball to make her even start to look good. She's gonna sing "Tender Roni I Want Your Love." Or something like that. It doesn't particularly matter, because none of it is intelligible. I think her nose is about to fall off her face. Pinocchio wants us to give her our love, but the only thing we're gonna give her is a boot to the butt. She goes on smarting off to Simon, which instantly wins her a trip to Hollywood, provided she entirely foots the bill and sings anywhere besides the place where the auditions are. She comes back with something inane, and now it's time for the cursing spree outside. She tells Simon to kiss her butt. Unfortunately, it would take the better part of a week to accomplish that monumental task.

After the break, the Super Geek and the Human Lip.


Back to Seattle, where the rain is pouring down on thousands upon thousands of talentless schlubs. Lots of people get a no, including a cutie who has too much vibrato.

Oh, by the way, those of you who were wondering... I proposed to my girlfriend on my IWT20 radio show this past week. She said yes!!

Up next is Amy Salgado, who is a stay-at-home mom with a husband who's doesn't think she should audition. You have to love the chicks like Regina Brooks who say the heck with their families and run off to try to go to Hollywood. I sort of liked her at the beginning of this piece, but after she starts crying, I just sort of want to punch her in the face. She's going to sing "Reflection" as done by Christina Aguilera. Oh good, she sucks! I was afraid she'd have actual talent, and then I would have to hate her for a little more of this season. She's not even close though, and it's back to sitting at home and stuffing her face full of Hostess cakes while watching reruns of Maury all day. She goes and drinks a bottle of unauthorized blurred-out water, which has absolutely zero therapeutic effect on her voice or my ears. I honestly think she was serious about this audition, but I pity her not. Time to go, Baby Beluga. I'm fast-forwarding through the exit interview.

While I'm at it, I should probably fast forward through the montage of talentless hacks, including Mr. Die Die Die, the necessary "hey rock and roll rules and American Idol is for pansies" plant.

Up next is Darwin "Meesha" Reedy. Meesha? Really?? I knew she was Jar Jar Binks' love child. Well, she's all lips. Good grief. I wouldn't kiss her with YOUR mouth. Hey Meesha, Ronald McDonald called and said to tell you that painting your lips like that doesn't help when your chest sags to below your contestant number. She's an obvious plant, to be sure, an actor hoping against hope to get a moment of screen time. It's odd that she should be named Darwin, because if Darwinism were totally correct, she'd have been extinct a while back. Mom is an actor plant too. And the more they talk, the more I wonder what the last few episodes of The O.C. will be like. Now that they're done pimping their novella (does anybody really write those anymore?) and sucking up to Paula, it's time for her to (shock, horror) butcher a song. I don't even care which one. Oh yeah, it's that wretched "Don't Cha" song. Bye. Please? Bye. Actors! I really hope they don't ever get jobs outside of convenience stores.

After the break, I see hideous people!


We're back in rain-soaked Seattle, and it's day two of this crap-fest. I've still not found anyone that I really think is the clear winner yet. They play the Fantasia/Sam Cooke version of Milli Vanilli's "Blame It On the Rain."

Tommy Daniels has a fro, quit his job, and figures Idol will be his meal ticket. He slept behind some trash cans while waiting for his audition, and while he was there, he picked up a brand new pair of pants. This is his third try, so I'm not optimistic. He picks Amos Lee's "Arms of a Woman." Whoa, wait a minute, I like that voice. It's a bit breathy, but I could listen to this guy! I want a jazz album, right now. Paula is sprung on him. Simon compliments his choice of song. And there's the key, I think. Pick an obscure song that you can sing well, so that you're not compared to the original artist. Third time IS a charm, and it's golden ticket time. Well done! He kidnapped Paris Hilton's dog for the event.

Melissa Stavros is next. She doesn't have the look, but she does have some personality. I am not really clear as to why women who are the size of a house want to wear clothes that would be inappropriately tight on an anorexic ballerina. I do like her attitude, though. She does have a nicer voice than most contestants, even if she can't 100 percent remember the lyrics. She blew her high note and several others after that, and I think this one's gonna be a flop. Randy says no. Paula says no. Simon says no. I say no. Love ya babe, but go get some coaching and a stylist. I love that she came with a guy who has an orange mohawk.

After the break, siblings and weirdos.


I used to think pretty people were a dime a dozen, but to judge by the populace of Seattle, ugliness is the hot commodity.

Blake Lewis took his inspiration for his hair from Seacrest and Art Alexakis of Everclear. Either that or he was inspired while standing near a lightning rod and a vat of hair gel. He's 25 and a musician (read: unemployed.) He's a beat-boxing champion, or so he says. I believe him. He's entertaining to watch, and already I know his voice is going to be okay. He sings "Crazy" and throws his beat-box schtick into it. I don't know about "great," but he's got something. Simon thinks he isn't as good as he thinks he is, which could also truthfully be applied to all three of these judges. Randy thinks it's the wrong song choice. Good call. Paula is down with Blake hardcore. Simon says yes, though he doesn't heart Blake as much as Pauler. Randy comes over to the dark side and says yes, and it's time for a golden ticket.

After the break, what the...


We're back, and it's time for more stupid auditions, including Michael Bustamente and David Mills, who have the combined talents of celery. We haven't seen the last of Dina Lopez, especially if you go to the local strip club.

Brother and sister something-or-other that I can't pronounce are up next. They're cute-ish, but they're not Barrettsmiths. After a long, drawn-out, somewhat creepy intro, Shyamali Malakar sings, and sings rather well. I kind of figured she would. I'd give her a yes. Simon thinks she's average. Randy disagrees, but thinks she needs to explore herself more. Every "yes" this season has been unanimous. Anybody else notice that? It's not changing so far.

Sanjaya Malakar is up next. He sings a Stevie Wonder song. He's okay, but he's slightly more average than Shyamali. Simon finds him to be better, though, and Randy agrees. They both get to go. This will make for great television somewhere down the road, I'm sure.

After the break, can it end???...


Now it's time for geek boy. Not buying it. This is an actor. Yup, you heard it here. Nicholas Zitzmann is another Mary Roach. I just want to hit him in the face with a shovel. He sort of looks like Jonathan Brandis and a pug had a baby. What makes him unique is the fact that he's a HORRIBLE ACTOR. I mean, come on. His last name is ZITZMANN. This is a CHARACTER being played by an ATTENTION-SEEKER. There's the obligatory massacre of "Unchained Melody" so there would be something for the promo footage. Wow, Simon has some biceps! I wish he'd use them and pound Mr. Zit in the face. Several presidential administrations elapse, and yet this audition goes on. It's now 2027, and Nicholas pretends to be shocked that everyone thought it sucked. Spaz. My roommate was entertained by this segment, and I think that's at least partially why I'm kicking him out when I get married.

Seattle sucks, and it's up to Mr. Hey Look At My Crotch to save the day. Rudy Cardenas is in a band of some sort, but he's going to start with Journey's "Open Arms." He sings it less like Steve Perry and more like Nick Carter, but I'm not repulsed. He's got a bit of Marc Anthony in his voice. Simon instantly says no. Paula says yes. Randy lets his Journey bias sway him and we have our first split decision this year. It swings Rudy's way, and we'll see him in Hollywood.

No! Do not start playing that horrid Daniel Powter song again this year!

Time for another Simon Sucks segment, and that's the end of Day 1. Only 7 people made it through.

After the break, yuck!


The sun's finally out in Suck-attle. I guess that gastric bypass didn't really do it for Randy.

Kenneth Briggs is so ugly, I'd swear he had to have been photoshopped that way. He naturally gravitates to Jonathan, whose body mass is quickly approaching planetary status. When they shook hands, Kenneth flew up off the floor and started orbiting Jonathan.

Kenneth is up first, and sweet monkey mess, this kid is a Uglo-American of the highest pedigree. He has this weird helium voice. This dude got beaten by a baseball team full of ugly sticks. He sings "Tearing Up My Heart," but he's tearing up my eyes. Watching him dance makes me throw up in my mouth a little. He does look a bit like a bush-baby. Seriously, is this guy rendered in CGI? Surely there's not a human that looks like this. Other door, and back to your spaceship.

Monkey-boy's large and in charge friend Jonathan Jayne has an equally Lollipop-Guild-esque voice, but he's certainly no munchkin. I bet he does have an amazing personality, but it's masked by marginal vocal talent. He doesn't have an un-coachable voice, but it's not that great either. He needs to be taught how to modulate, but he's not entirely talent-less. Simon likes him, but it's a unanimous no. I think he was actually sincere about the audition, so I feel a little bit sorry for him. He sort of looks like a heavier Chris Farley, so he could possibly go the comedy route (though hopefully not the heroin overdose route.)

After the break, oh you just had to know there'd be Taylor impersonators this year...


It's time to go shopping in Seattle while various suck-burgers get thrown at the judges three.

Eric totally colored his hair to look like Taylor's. No way is that for real. He looks sort of like what might happen if Taylor and the Dustin Hoffman character from Rain Man got together and had a baby. He profanes the name of the Soul Patrol, and he announces that he's about to sing...wait for it...Dobie Gray and "Drift Away," which has internal rhyme, huh-huh-huh, get it? get it? No. And neither does he. Is this serious? He swears on his mother's life that it is, however considering his mother is Forrest Gump, that doesn't carry much weight. He tries to mess with Simon's hair and two hairy apes swing down out of the trees and bounce him out like a rubber ball. How does this guy have a hot girlfriend??

Ryan is shorter than everyone. Including Verne Troyer.

Anna Kearns is especially taller than Mr. Short-crest. Her job before coming to auditions was holding up a torch on an island in NYC. She's going to sing "Respect" by Aretha Franklin. Decent voice, but PLEASE STOP SNAPPING! I realize it's a nerve thing, but it's totally hackneyed and overdone, and it distracts from the performance. I like her voice, and she's not bad. Simon finds her to be very "cabaret." I think that's the first for that word this year. The judges commence to make inane noises, and Simon is put off by it, because heaven forfend that anyone should make hurtful jokes at Mr. Cowell's expense. Anna goes to Hollywood, and I'm actually curious now to see how she does. Simon waits till she exits to make the Mandisa comment of the year, calling her a giraffe. I feel like I'm being sold something.

After the break, Jordin and Stevie... the good, the bad, and the ugly...


We're back, and someone BETTER be good.

And now, here's 16 year old Jordin Sparks. She's quite cute and reminds me of a heavier-set Lisa Tucker. She is going to sing Celine's "Because You Loved Me." Jordin is going to be the one who uses the most melisma this year, but I think she has a spectacular voice. She needs to work on her stage presence a little bit more, but I think this girl is going to do well. Her dad is Felipe Sparks, a NFL veteran, so now he and Nikko Smith's dad can get together and throw Idol parties with cheese dip and sport-themed doilies. Simon thinks she's too saccharine in this song, and I have to agree to a point, but I'd love to hear something different from her. I love that she's so sweet and nervous as heck. Unanimous yes, and she was only one of 7 from the second day to go to Hollywood. Rough day!

A lot of people can't sing "Don't Cha" by the Pussycat Dolls, but that's kind of okay, because that song sucks anyway. Boy these are some ugly folks. Did any of you ever see the segment on Conan O'Brien where they take two celebrities and photoshop them together to make some horrific monstrosity offspring? Some of these people look like those photographs.

After the break, Grizzly Adams...


Steven "Red" THOEN stands out in a crowd, most likely because of lack of bathing. He really finds himself funny. I really find him to be most likely to appear in a negative light on Court TV. He tells the obligatory lie about how he never watched American Idol. Red is an actor. An obvious plant. Boy this is really funny, in the same way that necrosis is enjoyable. Apparently this joke never gets old to those who edit the audition shows together. Random attention-craved actor wannabe does a character, comes in and sings ridiculously, and then makes the highlight reel and probably gets to come to the finale for free. He's an EXTREMELY horrific actor. Don't sing, just be about it, he says. Be about the other door right about now. Don't worry with polling the judges. Just poll the bored-looking intern sitting by the door and let her bounce him out.

Seattle is over, thankfully, and my city Memphis is up next! I look for some great talent from this musically hot city. Stay tuned to this site for more stuff this week!


At 10:38 PM, Anonymous Lorraine said...

he he he!!!! Oh yea! I luv your Idol reviews! *S* he he he....

I liked the tall chick... I think the computer geek was set up by his coworkers who all told him he just *had* to go tryout... It's actually kinda of sad to watch Paula pump egos and say things like, "Great job, but this competition just isn't for you." to people's faces, then totally diss them as soon as they are out of the room... I'll bet they went home thinking, wow... Paula dug me at least... only to watch the tape and feel lower than an ant's toenail. But hey.. it's all about great TV, right? And Paula only seems to do that for the first hour or so.... I guessing after that the rum or vodka or whatever the heck she has in that big red Coke cup is taking effect...

Dude! Keep up the good work! and Congrats on the engagement!

At 10:01 AM, Anonymous Cleo said...

First, CONGRATULATIONS on your engagement! :)

Next, I HEAR YA on the UGLY PEOPLE! Why, when there are plenty of marginally talented GOOD-LOOKING people they could show, does Idol insist on assaulting both our hearing AND our eyesight?!

I think I liked Afro Boy, Beatbox Boy, the Malakar siblings, and the football player's daughter, but I don't know if it's because they're truly good or merely good in comparison to most of the other people I watched last night.

Memphis looks like it'll be a little better than Seattle. Thank goodness for that. And thank you for another good read.

At 11:05 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

JD - Congrats on the engagement!! Hurray for you (AND for her!!) Post a picture of you two together, would ya?!!

Thanks for your GREAT review (again) on "AI night 2: Seattle"; I totally concur :~) Looking forward to your reviews next week....


At 5:43 PM, Anonymous artslvr said...

Your comment about Nicholas Zitzmann got me wondering. Then Jon Peter Lewis, in his AI blog on AOL, pointed out that Nicholas quotes Forrest Gump. :D Nicholas just reminds me of a guy I know, so he had struck me as real. I found what appears to be his MySpace-- There is definitely more to him than meets the eye. I'm not sure what, but more. I think he is probably very bright. His MySpace plays a song that he wrote, recorded, and mixed. I liked it! Singing is not for him, but maybe he could do something with instrumental music.

What happened with Mary Roach? Was she confirmed as an actor? I remember her vividly.

At 8:13 PM, Blogger J.D. said...

Yes Mary Roach was confirmed as an actor

At 10:26 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your AI reviews display the most insipid, amateurish writing I've ever read on an Idol blog. Your humor is as funny as a jugular vein, and your 'insight' about as perceptive as Paula Abdul's.
Does this Musical Ramblings actually have regular readers?
With the AI bogs such as and American Idol Rant and a host of genuine talent and humor on the web, this blog is the Mary Roach to other blogs' Fantasia. It's a bloody mess and suffers the worst sin of all in writing a humorous blog - it's not funny.

At 11:10 PM, Blogger J.D. said...

Yet it motivated you enough to make your best Simon Cowell comment. Mission accomplished.

At 11:43 PM, Blogger Stacy said...

First.....what in the world are you doing slipping that engagement announcement right smack dab in the middle of your REVIEW!? Boy, i oughta reach through this monitor and slap you!


Anyway, congratulations :)

And I guess these posts are about to mark a 1 year anniversary of our pal-ship, eh? It'll be fun reading your stuff! I'll comment on the contestants soon. Right now, there's just not much more to say.

I still can't believe you didn't make it to the Memphis auditions! :)

At 10:34 PM, Anonymous MA said...

JD, Love the snarky reviews as always, but actually "Red"'s parents came out and said that he DOES have slight retardation. So take that for what its worth. I for one am getting tired of the goofballs. I want to see the TALENT!

At 6:11 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

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Jujitsu For Women
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At 1:56 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

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At 8:26 AM, Anonymous Jason poon said...

I heard Jennifer chapton was telling people that the head honcho paid her to fail.


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