Some Couch-Jumping, Then America Gets It Right

But why, as Black Eyed Peas, do they not only lip-sync but get electronified?

Last Updated: March 5, 2010 @ 7:39 AM


“I gotta feeling … that tonight’s gonna be a good, good night.” (Whoooo hoo, indeed!) To the producer in charge of picking out this Black Eyed Peas, er, masterpiece for the group number, I say thank you. It is obvious that you have a wicked sense of humor, since it was clearly not a good night for at least four of our Idol hopefuls. Kudos also go out to the choreographer for her literal interpretation of lyrics such as “jump off that sofa” (sit and … jump!) and “let’s kick it up” (kick your legs up!).
This week it was the lovely Lilly Scott who could not have looked more awkward during this show choir number. Perhaps it was her heels or the distraction of swarms of people moving in a circular motion and, uh, “jumping off the sofa” but she just looked, well … drunk. On the other hand, Katelyn Epperly showed major stage presence (I like her more and more every time I see her!), as did Lacey (It’s amazing what a great singer you become when your vocals are prerecorded!) Brown.
I have to admit that I’ve played back the group number more than a few times, as I haven’t been this obsessed with a funny music video since that Japanese “Yatta!” number. (Look it up; it’s amazing.) As I noted last season, it still really bothers me that the Idols lip-sync during this portion of the show. Even worse? The fact that the solo ad libs were all, like, electronicized. (Is that a word?) I guess it fits the whole “Peas” vibe, but we’re not looking for the next Black Eyed Pea or Ke$ha or overly produced marginally talented singer. We’re looking for an Idol
Hokey Danny Gokey appeared and apparently he’s a country singer now. (What?!) While he has a great voice, I just don’t see him in that genre, no matter what Randy Travis says.  His new single, “My Best Days Are Ahead of Me,” wasn’t exactly outstanding, either, regardless of being written by another widower. (I can’t believe we’re still hearing about Gokey’s dead wife!)
As for the eliminations, I don’t want to say “I told you so,” so I’ll say “I was right.”
Tim Urban escaped elimination again this week despite being the weakest man in the competition. He’s cute, I’ll give him that, but he is no American Idol. He should return to Texas and play guitar at the Duncanville single men’s ward or something. Hey, I like “Big Love” as much as the next person, but this kid’s got to go next week. 
It came down instead to John Park and Jermaine Sellers, neither a huge surprise. (Again, not to say “I told you so … ”) Park’s elimination was a little disappointing because I think he’s better than the performances he gave on the live shows. He just didn’t seem to be clear on what kind of artist he wanted to be. 
Unfortunately, on “Idol,” you have limited time to blow the audience away and make them fall in love with you. Don’t cry for him, though; we may not have fallen in love with him but I’m sure he’s got lots of “Purple Haze” a cappella groupies waiting back at Northwestern to admire that “beautiful bottom end” that Shania Twain so famously revered.
Regarding his future as a recording artist, I’m not so sure we’ll see him on iTunes anytime soon if his parents’ expressions were any indication. Could they have loked more stoic listening to his final performance from the balcony? Something tells me that Park may end up changing his major from voice to something more honorable to traditional Korean families — medicine, law or taekwondo teacher.
Apparently God didn’t get Jermaine’s messages this week ‘cause he was the next to go. When Seacrest asked if he thought his sassy mouth got him in trouble with the audience, Sellers kept it relatively classy, even giving props to his fellow contestants. And apparently he’s not angry at God for abandoning him in his hour of need because “in God, there is no failure.”
As for the girls, Haeley Vaughn and Michelle Delamor graced the “Idol” stage for the last time. Michelle got the boot because she was forgettable, while Haeley was eliminated because she was unforgettable — for all the wrong reasons. It’s interesting that Kara took back the praise she had given Michelle the night before, saying that when she watched it back on television it was sharp. Simon also said that he had given praise to someone the night before who didn’t deserve it once he watched the playback; however, he refused to name names. Could he have been speaking of Michelle as well?
When it came down to Vaughn and Lacey Brown, Simon said that it was “very obvious who’s gonna go home” to “everyone watching.” This had me scratching my head a little bit because they are both clearly the weakest girls in the competition. In fact, they both deserved to go home before Michelle, if we’re judging solely on vocals. But, as we know, this is “American Idol” and it’s as much of a popularity contest as it is a singing contest. I think America made the right choice by sending Haeley home, though. She does have some potential; she is just young and needs to learn to stop screaming (and smiling). 
I still think that the losers giving final performances immediately after their eliminations is cruel. Particularly cruel was playing the “goodbye” video right before the 16-year-old with raging hormones (Vaughn) had to sing a song as sappy as “The Climb.” “I can almost see it, that dream I’m dreaming,” she sang. “But there’s a voice inside my head saying ‘you’ll never reach it.’”
That voice is Simon and America, Haeley, but keep reaching for that dream anyway.