It's never a good sign when the show starts being too self-aware. If you can have Ryan Seacrest joke about filler in the hour long results show, joking about it doesn't mean it's okay. To be fair, this season bringing in another musical guest at least makes the hour less draggy. And thank goodness Robin Thicke has that pencil thin moustache -- that's the only thing that keeps me from thinking of his dad Alan Thicke when he's singing. He was good, but why a soul singer during rock week?
Man On The Street -- Ryan went amongst the people and got kind words about every performer except Jordin, which made me even more worried. Ryan's joke later that Simon had a girlfriend and it was VERY serious almost sent Simon into paroxyms of laughter -- happily, since a minute earlier he'd confused a joke about a sex doll as a slur on that very same girl and demanded an apology. So Simon will defend her honor but NOT give her that diamond ring.
FORD CIRCUS AD -- Yet again, I found the Ford not nearly as annoying as the ones in seasons past. Is someone new coming up with them. Blake looked good as the ringmaster.
FIRST ELIMINATION -- I notice that Blake and Chris are wearing AIDS ribbons and then I realize they all are. What prompted that, I wonder and will they wear them next week? How about a peace symbol, somebody? With Melinda and LaKisha and Phil standing up, I was actually feeling a little suspense until they said Phil was going home. My first thought was that he was so good the night before they should have saved Phil's goodbye for the second half. He sang the song really well again, hugging his Navy buddies and for a moment I thought he was gonna avoid his wife (out of fears of choking up?) but then he embraced her. Ryan said Phil had a big heart and everyone hugged and LaKisha won points for the most copious tears. Don't any of them want to claw out the eyes of their competitors to win it all?
BON JOVI -- Sang "You Wanna Make A Memory," which is right in his current comfort zone of Adult Contemporary and soft rock. Sounded great and looked good but the line about "Look at all that hair we had" was annoying -- he's still got all that hair.
SECOND ELIMINATION -- Jordin got to sit down right away, which was as close as they came to apologizing for their cheap stunt the week before. Then it came down to Blake and Chris and everyone knew Chris was going home. Phil and LaKisha would have made a much more suspenseful finale since either one of them might have gone. Pairing up Blake (the most highly praised) with Chris was dullsville. But then it got cute. They insisted they were "best friends." Not BFFs -- best friends forever? And what about the people they've known ALL THEIR LIVES? Suddenly their best friend is a guy they've only known a few months? Chris said, "I'd go home for him right now" which wasn't very noble since he knew he was going home. Ryan tried to spice things up by asking them if they wanted to switch whatever the result was but they didn't bite. But they were so buddy buddy I was half hoping they'd kiss no matter who went home. And then of course it was Chris and he did a fine job singing and they all hugged and at the last moment the mikes picked up some mumbled joke they made. I'm serious: American Idol could make MILLIONS online by letting us listen in to the Randy, Paula, Simon or contestant mikes no matter what was being played on air. We saw Chris's journey -- which included a remarkable triumph over bad acne in just a few weeks and lots of loving looks at the camera. And for the first time in ages, I was right about who went home: Chris and Phil. Next week, the sole remaining male Blake should be a safe bet for at least one more round which means the resurgent LaKisha and floundering sweetie Jordin are duking it out to make it to the final three.