Tuesday, January 23, 2007

American Idol Night 3: MEMPHIS BABY!!

Awww yeah, we're in my town! Memphis, TN! This could either be really good or really embarrassing. I hope I don't see anybody I know. Unless they're good. You know what I mean.

And no, I didn't make it to the auditions this year. For one thing, I'm a year too old now. For another, I was busier than Britney Spears in a fertility clinic on those days. So this is going to be me on the outside looking in.


We open up on a shot of Graceland, Autozone Park, and Main Street. Beale Street is all non-stop action, except on a cold cold weeknight. This was shot in summer. On a Wednesday night in February, people are definitely inside warming their insides, but the street ain't so busy till Friday night. Memphis feels like a ghost town on this particular day because all the contestants took a wrong turn at the Pyramid, got carjacked, and had to file police reports. Well, actually, everybody and their brother are at the FedExForum trying to get camera time. Yup, that's the Forum...a multi-million dollar stadium that replaced our other multi-million dollar stadium that we hadn't yet paid off.

Frank Byers is a cheerleader, and he just had to bring the squad. His squad of Britneys wait outside for Frank to emerge in abject failure. His nickname is "Frank and Beans." Sometimes they make it too easy. I want him to suck. Naturally, as is my luck, he doesn't really. He's not perfect, but he's not the worst guy we've heard this year. A bit over the top, but he could probably translate into a good musical theatre understudy. He continues to sing despite Simon's criticisms which wins him points toward a bus ticket home. Randy isn't down. Paula says see ya. And the cheer bus goes back home to another rave. The cheer squad makes a ton of noise and Ryan calls Simon a bad word.

After the break, some talent? Really?


Timika Sims is from Chicago but she stay in Memphis. She's just the slightest bit vacuous, which is like saying that Carmen Electra is kind of a slut. Apparently her brain is running on a Windows 95 processor. She is going to sing an Ashanti song, which already will suck without her help. Gross. This sucks. I think she may actually be serious and not an actor. Simon calls her Tim-uh-ka, and I half expect that crackhead chick from Season One to burst in and say "Tuh-MEE-kuh!!" She flips off the camera.

Chris Rivera is going to try "Superstition" as done by Stevie Wonder. Yeah, if Stevie were being violated with a soldering iron he might sound like that.

Alexis Partee is going to do a Teena Marie song. Those braces are getting in the way of her spitting and just about everything else. I don't think she's uncoachable, but jeepers!

Sundance Head is a big ol' boy. His dad was a top recording artist by the name of Roy Head. Sundance has sort of a Ruben quality about him...not because he's large, but because there's something about him you just really want to like. I'd love to see what rap sheet the Smoking Gun or TMZ will come up with. He's married, a father, and he's going to do a song by Bobby "Blue" Bland. Okay, now THAT'S what I'm talkin' about. This is my Elliott this year. I am going to quit typing now and just listen. Oh my goodness... I want this to be the next American Idol. Simon calls him one of the best voices they've heard this year. Unanimous yes. Simon makes the call that he'll appear in the finals. I'll second that. I love this guy! Simon says he sings circles around Taylor.

After the break, someone likes Paula, and someone goes all Whitehaven on the camera...


We're back...

Wandera Hitchye sings okay, if not a little over-the-top. I mean, there's talent there, but is it unique? The judges look bored, and so am I. Her look needs a serious overhaul and her personality just doesn't work. Simon hits the nail on the head when he says that there are tons of singers out there just like her. She just doesn't stand out. She gets the boot, at which point her personality falls completely apart. She rips at her clothes, stomps off down the hall, assaults the camera, and displays all the class of a Brittenum twin.

I do like that there is at least marginal talent being shown tonight, though, and not just the clowns. So far, it looks like there were at least a few serious auditioners, even if they weren't quite good enough.

Travis McKinney looks a bit like Kadeem Hardison from "A Different World." He's going to bring love and emotion to us in the form of some spastic dance that was apparently inspired by an epilepsy. He goes into a rap that Bobby Brown would've rejected from his worst record. I get the feeling that he might have a bit of a voice, but we never got to hear it because he was doing too much schtick in order to appear unique. Instead, he appears rejected.

Danielle McCulloch is hot, and her voice is too. I love the smoky quality she has. She's got some range, even though she's not really using it that much in this bluesy number. I absolutely love her voice and her style. Randy doesn't agree with me. Dawg, go back and listen to the mp3 after the show. It's hot! He sees her as a Melissa McGhee type that gets voted off early. Paula says yes to Hollywood, and Simon, in one of the most anticlimactic moments in television history, agrees with Paula. First and only time this year, I'm betting. She's going to the big show, and that wraps up the first day!

After the break, something very sexy, supposedly...


Day two, and Paula Abdul has a lot of guys wanting to hug her. A couple pass out from the alcohol fumes.

Topher McCain is happy about meeting Paula, because she's hotter than anything that has ever touched him before. His wife had been messing around on him, so he's going to get back at her by becoming the next American Idol. I like his motivation, at least. No digs on his looks, because that's not fair. I just hope he doesn't get too cheesy on the Pauler. He obviously has the same talent for picking audition songs that he does for picking women. He sings Kenny Loggins' "Footloose," and I can only imagine that he might actually have a halfway decent voice, even though this song doesn't in any way give him any sort of showcase. Simon compares it to a drunken performance at a wedding. Bad karaoke, according to Randy. Simon is impressed that Chris got to call his ex-wife a naughty word on national TV. He walks out to go get drunk with his future ex-wife, who incidentally isn't Paula, nor even close.

Janita Burks believes in dressing sexy, but not too sexy, but that's only because she hasn't the capability to be any more sexy than an oozing butt sore. Can somebody please go get a robe, because those things are about to fly out and punch someone in the eye. "Disco Inferno" was slaughtered, and the boobs didn't save the day. Paula breaks out laughing during her second try, and if you've ever heard Paula sing "Rush Rush" you know that Paula telling someone they lack talent is HUGE. And big no.

We've had an Amish guy, an Uncle Sam, and now we've got a Fidel Castro. Sean Michel waxes philosophical about something that I fell asleep to during the first hour. He sings some Johnny Cash song about Jesus, no doubt to cash in on his image. It's not horrible, but it's not perfect either. I did enjoy the runs and his scat just a bit. Paula thinks he has a nice tone to his voice, and I tend to agree to a point. It's a unanimous yes, and he's on the way to Hollywood.

After the break, the new Elvis...


Melissa Dolittle is as nervous as Whitney Houston during a urine test. She's a background singer who wants to come out and sing lead. She's going to do "For Once in My Life" by Stevie Wonder. Um, yup. You're going to Hollywood. If she would develop her stage presence, she'd be perfect. Oh my, I am in love with this voice of hers! I love her. Love her. L-O-V-E. Her. Between her and Sundance, we can stop the auditions right now for all I care. I can't sing her praises enough. I bet she'll develop her confidence. Big big big yes. I think we may have seen the Top 2 just tonight.

Now it's off to Graceland, which is an amazing place. I love Elvis.

I don't, however, care for the guy who thinks he's the new Elvis. He's not gonna dance to the song, he says, but he'll do a little...um...movement. Seacrest looks at him as though he'd just explained quadratic equations. Robert Holmes feels like he is a comedian. I feel like I'm going to be sick. The joke about the period was mildly amusing, but by now the clown would've hauled him off stage at the Apollo. He's gonna do "Burning Love." This actor doesn't need any review. You knew he was gonna blow big time. He goes home. This is the first audition tonight that I am pretty sure isn't legit. Big melodramatic end.

And now for a montage of people who prove that Elvis has, indeed, left the building, and left it quite empty. They're just a hunka-hunka burnin' turd.

After the break, an auditioner who missed the delivery of his baby to audition... ugh....


Blogger is down right in the middle of all this. Stupid people don't know when Idol is on apparently...

Some bald jerk whose name I missed because I was busy not liking him completely missed his baby being born to come audition for Idol. Okay, look, let me just get this off my chest. I am NEVER impressed by someone who forsakes and sells out their family just for an audition on Idol. I'm sorry. He's going to sing "My Girl" by the Temptations. It starts off sucking like the baby is no doubt doing while nursing in the absence of a father. The rest of the song is dedicated to his obviously latchkey children, but it's just really kinda bland. He has a fairly nice voice, but I just don't like him. Paula didn't quite like it as much as Randy. He breaks into a strained version of "Let's Get It On," after all, because we just couldn't be spared that. Simon doesn't think he starts the songs well, and I completely concur. Paula says yes while the others argue, and the first contestant that I actively dislike has gone through.

Tomorrow night, it's time for NYC.


At 6:47 AM, Anonymous Lorraine said...

I got to read your reviews... I missed Idol altogether, forgot it was on, then watched the Pres. State of the Union Address. But I'm sure reading about it hear was not only funnier than watching it, but saved my poor ears from bleeding. *S*

Keep it up!

At 4:00 PM, Anonymous Cleo said...

Thanks for another nice recap, JD.

After all the flak over Bush Baby Boy, I was wondering if Idol was purposely showing more "not quites" than "no ways" last night... Until I realized that the State of the Union address was going to cut the show to half of its normal length.

I really, really liked Sundance and Melinda -- the first two WOWS of the season for me. I wonder if any of the 17 golden-ticket-getters that we didn't see last night come anywhere close to these two.


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