On Gear Live: Vizio E-Series 2018 4K TV review

Thursday May 8, 2008 3:33 pm

Three Still Standing on American Idol

American Idol Top 4

The Top 4 results night on began with the usual self-congratulatory feelings as host Ryan Seacrest announced the Tuesday vote totals were the highest for the season, with nearly 51 million cast. The Top 3 competitors of the evening were separated, he added, by a paltry million votes.

took a moment to talk with the judges about Syesha Mercado, who in weeks past has barely slipped past the long arm of elimination. “I was just judging her the way I saw the vocals,” Randy Jackson defended his less-than-complimentary Tuesday praise. “She did an amazing job last night,” Paula Abdul went to bat for Mercado. The host then asked Simon Cowell if the latter was angry Tuesday night. Of course he wasn’t - “just surprised,” Cowell explained, at the rather “disastrous song choices.”

As the time for banter ended, an almost-final glimpse of the Final Four Idols was presented as the quartet crooned “Reelin’ In the Years.” I thought the choice was totally odd, but I must admit that the number was pretty good all the same. The American Idol tour of the Top 10 contestants, by the way, begins July 1. Tickets go on sale May 17.

Banter and performances aside, there’s only one reason to watch Idol on Wednesdays: to find out, first hand, which one of the contestants is going home.

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American Idol

Resident favorite was called on stage first. Seacrest attempted to chat it up with Archuleta, probably to prolong the nonexistent suspense. Naturally, David was bid to sit in safety. He will return for old home week in the next episodes of Idol, performing no less than three different songs.

This information was followed by a completely useless and time-wasting clip of the Top 4 and their trip to Las Vegas. Is anyone even interested, honestly?

was called to the stage. Ryan solicited advice, on Cook’s behalf, from Randy Jackson. “Keep bein’ yourself,” Jackson offered, telling Cook to “stay original.” Honestly, I’ve found very little creativity or originality in this kid. I’ve no idea what the judges, or in fact the American public, sees in this totally generic, cookie-cutter version of a rock star. I’ve seen a hundred performers exactly like him in every way. But Cook was sent to join David on the couch of safety, solidifying his fate as a Top 3 Idol and proving that the show’s rocker can get past the number 4 spot.

Jason Castro and Syesha Mercado

These revelations left Syesha Mercado and Jason Castro outside the safety zone. They were called on stage so all could gawk at them, but as the show was only half gone there was no way Idol was going to reveal anything of merit.

They had more filler to foist off on us first.

And filler it was, from the terribly crappy Ford video of the week (a matador theme, with the car as the bull, as the Idols oddly sang “Ring of Fire”) to the soul-sucking boredom of the nonsensical call-in segment.

The first question of the evening was for David Cook, who was oh-so-busy wearing a smug expression. The caller entreated Cook to take her on a date, and because he thinks he’s a huge rock star he didn’t ever actually agree. It’s the woman’s birthday, jerk! And to that lady - sweets, you can do better. The next question was for everyone, some malarkey about “What has been the biggest challenge?” was the first to answer, “stage fright,” though I had no idea she suffered from this affliction. Poor David Archuleta, certainly not the most eloquent of speakers, could come up with no answer, adopting the standard “I don’t know” in lieu of a proper response. “Just, the brain being dead,” was Jason Castro’s reply.

The next question, thank goodness, was for . The caller wanted to know why he hasn’t been knighted yet - a darn good question I’ve also wondered about many times. “Your Majesty, if you’re watching, I’m available,” Simon let it be known.

Another caller wanted to waste minutes of my life with their absurd inanity, some silly question for Syesha about whether or not she’s proud of being the only girl in the current contest. No, of course not. She bangs her head against the floor and screams every day.

Someone else wanted to know if any of the Idols have ever received feedback from any of the artists they’ve covered. Ummm….yes, every single week they have a mentor. On top of this, apparently David Cook was contacted by Our Lady Peace because he (in my opinion, mistakenly) covered “Innocent.”

Finally, another Simon question. This caller wanted to know if he’s ever acted, as Cowell would make quite a fabulous James Bond. Why didn’t I think of this myself?! He’s perfect! “I really like the questions this week,” Cowell smiled gamely at the cameras. Again, he announced “I’m available.” You hear that, Hollywood directors? Get on the stick.

Maroon 5, a band I do not particularly care for, then performed “If I Never See Your Face Again.” I would take the time to critique this performance, but I must admit I never even took the time to watch it in the first place. The lead singer is just way too Barry Gibb for my musical pain threshold. Adam Levine, who by his own admission never knows where he is, advised the Idols to “get ready to work.”

, former Idol rocker, then stepped up to perform his new single “Witness.” I didn’t think it sounded that great - there seemed to be a great deal of random yelling and literally the only thing of the song I could understand at all was the chorus. Bice advised the contestants to “practice, practice, practice.”

Jason Castro and Syesha Mercado

With only a few minutes remaining in the broadcast, the actual reason behind the show (the elimination itself) was treated largely as an afterthought as Syesha Mercado and were once again brought front and center. “I think my inexperience is coming in,” Jason admitted during his banter with Ryan Seacrest. Syesha talked about her emotional reaction to the judges Tuesday night, which - as I said - was prompted by Paula Abdul’s comments.

Jason Castro

And at the end of all of this, Jason Castro was eliminated. He looked at once like a man with a great weight lifted from his shoulders, and began to perform his Bob Marley song with immense joy. FOX cut him off and I only got to see about sixty seconds, but I’ve a good feeling we’ll all see more of Castro in months and years to come. All season long, David Cook has been praised for being different and original, but I don’t think that’s at all true. All season long, it’s been Jason Castro who looks and sounds like no other Idol who has ever come before, and it’s been Jason Castro whose smug-free charm won the heart of many an Idol-watching lady. There is surely a big future in the till for this one.



Do you think you could be a little bit harsher on David Cook?  Just because you don’t like him doesn’t mean he doesn’t have talent.  I feel as disgusted about Archuleta as you do about Cook.  Just report the facts next time.  We’re not interested in your opinion.

You should quit watching and reporting on American Idol if you have nothing good to say.  I have never read such a negative review of the show!  It is mean and nasty of you to bad-mouth a top 4 contestant that way (Cook).  They are all talented or they wouldn’t be where they are today.  You think that female caller deserves better than David Cook?  Well guess what—readers deserve better than you!!  Go away!

So you think that someone on television should say yes to dates with total strangers on their birthdays, otherwise they have ego problems? And you think the crazy stalker is the well-adjusted one for developing a fixation on a guy she sees on television? You have it backwards; the woman who called in is the one with an ego problem to call up and ask a stupid question like that and put another human being in a disgustingly awkward position. Doesn’t David Cook have a brother with cancer that he never gets to see because he’s busy on this show? Don’t you think there might be other people in his life (like his family or possibly dying brother) who he’d like to spend time with more than some crazy delusional stalker?


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