I swear on my golden "Idol" that in the future my picks for the bottom two will be simply my picks for the least effective songs. I look back on my notes and my three least favorite songs were clearly Sanjaya, LaKisha and Blake (with Chris right in there). So who does America wisely pick for the bottom three? Sanjaya, LaKisha and Blake. I of course got all cute about Phil and Blake's sex appeal and momentum and all that rot and got it almost completely wrong. But first, the show.
Ryan began the show by reprising his "Who is going home" while staring at Sanjaya. It was cute last week. This week it was just mean or annoying. I have no idea what Sanjaya said back to him. His t-shirt was very Sanjaya-ish -- "Life Is Beautiful." Sanjaya is love indeed, as Miss Ross said.
SIMON'S APOLOGIA -- The producers did a good job of showing exactly what went on last night. Letting us hear the unaired dialogue between Simon and Paula made clear they were talking and not listening to what Ryan and Blake were saying. Of course, no one thought Simon was mocking the dead at Virginia Tech, they thought he was mocking Chris and finding his reference to it insincere. But this clarification showed that wasn't the case either. Now if only we could ALWAYS go online and hear what the judges were whispering to each other.
PERSON ON THE STREET -- Is this now a weekly way to pad out the hour? I suppose it's better than a second group sing-along. By why in heaven's name did they show the clip of the woman calling Sanjaya a "girlie girlie sweetie boy. He a'ight but he don't belong there anymore." They could have just shown her saying the second half, but they included the girlie girlie ref. That's gratuitous and mean.
GROUP SING ALONG -- I'm Alright. The four people who were weak last night did a lot better here. Except for the dorky choreography, this was almost pleasant.
WHAT I'M LISTENING TO -- A shout out to Kirk Franklin, Yolanda Adams, Incubus and Willie Nelson. Phil said it might seem weird that he was listening to Willie. Uh, why in God's name would it be weird to listen to an icon like Willie at any time? And surely during country week it would be alsmot a given for anyone with taste or sense. Phil is clueless, especially since he just tried to convince us the night before he was country to the core. If you're country, you don't apologize for listening to Willie. Heck, if you like MUSIC you don't apologize for listening to Willie.
FERGIE -- Sang some dull song. The best part when a little kid -- looking quite bored -- was presumably shoved to the stage so she and Fergie could hold hands for a moment in what had to be the least spontaneous gesture in Idol history. The kid looked so disinterested I hope she got paid.
FORD AD -- I just noticed Ryan keeps calling them Ford music videos. It's an AD! Again, I suppose they're hopelessly goofy but for some inexplicable reason I find them less tiresome this season than before. And a nice nod to Flock of Seagulls during the spy scenes was appropriate since Idol is the new MTV. But there's no need for them to look so darn excited after the ad runs.
SHREK THE THIRD -- Oodles of promo for "Shrek The Third" with the kids meeting Jeffrey Katzenberg (Jordin looked REALLY excited when Katzenberg came out; is she some sort of animation freak or a studio chief groupie or just getting really good at acting?), learning how animated films are made, doing voice over work, meeting Antonio Banderas and then omigosh Antonio Banderas is sitting in the audience with lovely wife Melanie Griffith, their kid and Katzenberg again. Quincy Jones didn't get to speak for more than a second but Banderas gets to gab away. Amazingly, it wasn't even a Fox film. (I suppose Fox's Fantastic Four in mid-June is too far away to push.)
CUTTING TO COMMERCIAL -- When they're cutting to a commercial before announcing the bottom three, we get a shot of Jordin, Chris and Blake all staring open-mouthed in astonishment at the news. Very funny and I just KNOW it was Blake's idea.
TOP FOUR -- Melinda, Phil, Jordin and Chris. I jsut knew it was the top four when Jordin joined them. There was no way she was a low vote getter this week. Melinda was placed in the middle, the unspoken assumption that everyone knows she's the frontrunner. This is NOT good for her, since she's been in the lead so long that Jordin is gonna seem awfully appealing. Sitting down when asked to choose was very cute and perfect for her.
MARTINA MCBRIDE -- sings nice uplifting song. I could have done without her kid getting camera time; is this Idol or The 700 Club?
BOTTOM THREE -- Sanjaya, LaKisha and Blake, my three least favorite performances. Blake sits down right away and it must unnerve LaKisha to hear everyone freaking out first when he was in the bottom three and screaming for him to be safe. You are in trouble, Kiki. Then Sanjaya goes home, with LaKisha giving him a long hug, then Melinda getting good camera time by hugging LaKisha and then Blake topping them all by wiping away LaKisha's tears. Sanjaya tears up but gets through his song singing "something to talk about...other than hair."
Next week, I go with my gut. Really.