Wednesday, May 23, 2007

115 minutes of filler . . . 5 minutes of what we actually want to see

The TV Guide Channel is having an Idol red carpet. I'm sitting in my living room starting a blog when I should be grading papers. I've heard all sorts of things about the show tonight, but it seems that everyone is waiting around for the inevitable: Jordin is going to win.

DialIdol is predicting Jordin winning by a 3-2 margin. Everyone else seems to think that Blake got the shaft from the crappy obligatory winner's single, he picked a bad new song to unveil and that he did better than Jordin on the retread song. He also shouldn't have deferred to Jordin after the coin toss and should have gone first.

Last night's DWTS finale was two hours long and I can only hope that this finale goes just as quickly.

While Blake and Jordin are singing a Beatles song, I'd like to comment on something I saw on Fox news this afternoon. Normally I don't watch the crap that AI's parent company passes off as "news" but Mrs. High Lord had it on and they had a woman saying that she didn't want Jordin to win because she was setting a "bad example".

What kind of bad example? A 17 year old girl who got pregnant and dropped out of school? A drug addict who has thrown away her life by turning to prostitution to support her habit? A narrow-minded fundy Christian who thinks the Bible tells Jesus's followers that they should blow up abortion providers and oppose gay marriage at the expense of other issues such as relieving poverty, preserving the environment, opposing an unjust and fictitious war, and ensuring that everyone in the most wealthy and powerful nation in the world has health care?

No, this woman was saying that Jordin is obese. WTF?!?!?!? Yes, Jordin is a big girl, but she's not fat. Her father used to play in the NFL. Of course she's tall! But obese? That's absurd. Unless this woman thinks that all girls should be as waif-like and thin as Paris Hilton.

Here's Jordin:

If that's obese, I'm going to be the next President of the United States. Whoever the hell this woman was, she needs to shut the hell up. I don't know what Jordin's BMI is, but she's not ill-proportioned. Why can't people accept that God built everyone to be a certain way and that as long as they're healthy, some people are going to be taller and bigger than others, and some are going to be shorter and thinner?

If Lakisha were in a position to win, then yes, this woman would have an argument. I guess the question for me is this: If Chris Sligh were in the finals, would we be seeing her talking head on Fox news saying that Chris is a bad role model for young boys who are big-boned? Probably not. The only purpose I see of this woman is to perpetuate the double-standard we hold girls up to while excusing it for boys.

Check out this article on how only people (and specifically women) with a high amount of sex appeal will be successful major-label recording artists.

Gwen Stefani gets done singing whatever the hell they had her singing and now it's time for Kelly Clarkson's homecoming. I didn't watch the first season, but of the five winners, she's the only one who can claim to have made the show a success. After all, the show says it's looking for the next pop star. Rueben and Fantasia have fallen off the face of the earth (or at least the face of the radio), Carrie is burning up the country charts (but not the pop sales) and the jury is still out on Taylor, but right now Chris is kicking his butt.

She sounds good, although it seems that Gina does the rock chick thing better. At least she's graduated up from "A Moment Like This" to better songs.

After Kelly, we get to see American Idol having some laughs at the expense of people who tried out for the show. I hate this crap. After a segment that was embarrassingly bad featuring a woman wearing too much yellow, the guys are on singing together. I'm not crazy about it mostly because I hate all the runs that they threw in; just sing the song!

Smokey Robinson is good, though. The guys make good Miracles.

Blake gets to the first duet with Doug E. Fresh. I think I'd rather see him with Sir Mix-A-Lot. They show off their mad beat boxing skillz and are very entertaining. I think Blake would be a blast to see live.

Then there's another Golden Idol. Nooooooooooooo!!!!!!

Please tell me that whoever "wins" this one won't be singing . . .

Do you think Seacrest is embarrassed to be doing this?

Thankfully, the "singing" doesn't last too long and now the girls are on singing "Heard it Through the Grapevine". They're okay and then it's time for Gladys Knight.

While they're singing, I'd like to tell you about a DVD I just got in the mail today. It's a group of four middle-eastern men who have a stand-up comedy troupe called the "Axis of Evil". They're hella funny. Check out one of them over on YouTube, Maz Jobroni". If you're not laughing out loud, you either have no sense of humour or you believe everything that comes out of Anne Coulter's mouth.

After Paris last year, I didn't think I wanted to hear anyone else sing "Midnight Train to Georgia", but this crew is good. Of course, it helps to be backing up Gladys Knight. One question, though: how can Fox put 17 year old Jordin on stage in a nightie and not have the FCC censors breathing down their necks for "indecency".

In case you haven't noticed, we're three weeks away from our cruise to the Caribbean, and my travel agent called, so I missed Tony Bennett, the weird monkey guy & his buddy, and Melinda singing with BeBe and CeCe Winans.

After Blake and Jordin get the keys to their new Ford (cha-ching!) Mustangs, Carrie is on singing the same song she did for IGB. I think I'd rather hear something new.

Why is Clive Davis taking up space on my TV? What the hell is he babbling about? Besides name-dropping?

Wow! David Hasselhoff, Jeff Foxworthy and Jerry Springer all in the same audience! All we need now is a FRC sighting . . . oh, wait, he was there earlier.

The children's choir rocks. Even if I don't understand a word they're saying.

I could do without Sanjaya and Joe Perry. The kids from Africa deserved better than opening for this crap. Excuse me for a moment, I need to go get some cotton balls to plug up the blood that's flowing out of my ears.

While we sit through the filler, check out this article that makes a case for Blake being the best-case winner and this other article saying the same about Jordin.

Please remind me why Green Day is performing . . . and singing this horribly depressing song. It seems very out of place on this show.

In other news, Dubya may veto a bill that would fine gasoline price-gougers. Is anyone surprised? Maybe someone should remind me how Dubya and his family made all their money . . . And Heaven forbid anything be done to bring gas prices down.

Hey, look! It's Taylor. He's not dead and he wasn't abducted by aliens from Planet Zork. (That or the Zorkhans sent him back)

The only Idols we haven't seen are Rueben and Fantasia. I've heard the latter is busy in "The Color Purple" on Broadway, so she won't be on. I wonder what Rueben will be doing (besides shilling for IGB).

Taylor being on reminds me of how much fun he is. He will probably never be known as a great singer, but I think he would be fab to see in a small club somewhere.

Jordin and Rueben are on singing together. I wonder what the woman on Fox News (not from Fox News; she was just some talking head) would have to say about Rueben. After all, he is obese, and he's even lost some weight. They should go on tour together. It helps that Jordin isn't taller than Rueben.

I really like that Jordin doesn't come off on stage as a 17 year old. She seems so mature when she's singing. Not scared like Carmen Rasmussen and not obviously in over her head like John Stevens. She and Rueben sound grest together. It's a shame he never got any traction because he is really, really good.

Why was Brad Garrett sitting in Paula's chair? Mrs. High Lord thought for a minute that he was taking over Celine at Caesars. I asked if she needed to go to Vegas to see her, but she doesn't know if she can fit it in between our upcoming cruise and Hawaii next summer.

Randy and Paula are dancing; are Simon and Seacrest together, too?

Where is that woman who was on Fox News earlier telling us that people shouldn't be looking up to Bette Midler because she's obese?

Have I mentioned that three weeks from tomorrow, I'll be getting on a plane and flying to Orlando so I can visit with some friends and family, then going on a cruise to the western Caribbean for a week?

Kelly and Joe Perry singing Sergeant Pepper's. Are they bringing out the rest of the Idols, too?

I heard rumours of a Beatles medley. With 8 minutes to go in the show, it seems rather out of place. Do they really want to be showing the past Idols with this year's crop, of whom only one or two would have been in the running in seasons past.

Rueben seems odd singing "Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds". This is the mutha of all group sings. It's fab. Plus, Fantasia was no where to be found; double Woo-hoo!

They're already running over time, so I'll bet we get the abbreviated results, followed by the winner singing that song everyone is trying to forget.

After more banter from the judges, Seacrest announces the winner . . . .

Jordin Sparks.

As if we didn't see that coming. Not that either of them were going to lose. Both are getting a zillion bucks and record deals.

I'd pay money for Jordin to break into "A Moment Like This" right about now. I don't see how she can sing. I'd be a wreck. I'd also be happy just to be singing. Mom and Dad look so happy, and that's good. The song, however, is not.

Did we get to see Ashley again?

There's another season in the books. The first teenage winner . . . and she never seemed like a teenager on stage. She'll do well, even if she's obese.

. . . Unless the fireworks light her up.

And they finished only 9 minutes over.

Thanks to everyone who stopped by this year. I hope you'll check back with me during the off season. I'll be blogging So You Think You Can Dance and some other shows, so if that's interesting to you, stop on by.

High Lord. Out.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Big Night for Reality TV (and a rant about gasoline prices)

Here we are . . . Born to be kings . . .

You'll forgive me if I blog while standing up.

On the way to work today, I passed a gas station and regular unleaded was $3.189. On the way home, it was $3.49. I filled up on the way to work on Monday, so I still had a mostly full tank. Everywhere else around town, it was in the $3.44 to $3.49 range, with stories of $3.59 coming in from other parts of the great state of West Virginia.

I had to get tires and alignment for my car, so on my way back, I found myself near Sam's Club, so I pulled in. My Sam's card has expired, but even paying 5¢ more than Sam's members, it was worth it.

That's my tip for today: if the price of gas spikes, go to Sam's. It seems that they changed their prices overnight instead of in the middle of the day, like everyone else.

So like a lot of Americans, as I was driving home, I got the feeling that I was being raped by the gas stations. Of course, the reason for these seemingly-random price spikes are cloudy at best. The cost of oil has gone down. But price at the pump keeps going up. An increase of 30¢ here, down 7¢ there. We've been nickel-and-dimed to death over the last couple of months.

And I can't figure out why.

The oil companies say they're not gouging. (wink, wink, nudge, nudge)

But what else explains the price of gas going up $1.07 over the past three months?

When will we get fed up with this? Most of us can't (or are unwilling) cut our consumption. I drive 22 miles each way to my job. At work today, I said (not quite jokingly) that between what I'd make on unemployment and not having to drive in each day, I'd come out ahead. The only way I drive less is to find a new job. I could also rid of my crappy car that only gets 24 mpg and try to find something that gets in the mid-30s, but that would cost me a lot of money that I don't have right now.

What to do, what to do . . .

Sorry for that, but getting screwed at Speedway is really pissing me off.

Back to the show.

After some initial filler, BBB opens the show with "You Give Love a Bad Name", his best performance. Either you love this version or you hate it. There's not a lot in between. I happened to love it. I like that he's different. He's not the best singer, and he knows it. But he's the best performer we've had in years. And that should count for something. After all, neither Jimmy Buffett nor Gene Simmons are great singers, but they're good entertainers. I thought it was grest.

Without cutting to commercial, Jordin comes out singing some Christina Aguilera, which is usually not very smart. She is a better singer than Blake, but I thought she was shouting a lot. One thing I just realised the other day is that I've not talked about Jordin acting like she was 17, and being on the verge of imploding like just about every other teenager this side of Diana Degarmo. That she hasn't had a Leah Labelle meltdown is amazing and speaks to her maturity. The song was better than aiiiight, but not as good as Blake, either.

Paula "tripped over her dog" yesterday and broke her nose. Maybe she's back on the meds; she's been way too coherent lately. The last time someone famous "tripped over his dog", it was Jake Plummer and the dog's name was "Bud Light." Coincidence?

Blake is back singing more Maroon 5. I really dislike this song. And Blake isn't making me like it any more. I give it a big "meh". He sounds whiney, but that's the song. He didn't have to pick it though. The song choice award is going to Jordin right now. He should have picked a more memorable song. If anyone asks me what he sang to night, I'm going to say, "That craptastic song and Bon Jovi". I will probably have forgotten this one.

Was that Rick "Don't Call Me Ricky" Schroeder? We also got to see Chris Richardson and MU2 Phil Stacey.

With her reprise from earlier this year, Jordin brings us back to Martina McBride night. It's very good, and this should even her up after Blake's crappy song choice for the new song round. It shows that she's a better singer than Blake, but it's also not that defining performance like Fantasia had with "Summertime" or even K-Mac with "Over the Rainbow".

We're now two-thirds of the way through the show and I'd say they're dead even. Randy says Jordin is the most talented 17 year old singer he's ever seen, apparently forgetting about Diana who was a better singer and a better performer (and she was shorter than Seacrest).

All that's left for the two of them is the song American Idol is going to make them record if they win. Except for "A Moment Like This", these songs have always turned it up to eleven on the Meter O' Suckitude, and I'm sure that this year is no exception. Do we know if they're singing the same song (like Kelly and Justin) or if they each get their own song (like Taylor and Katharine)?

We get to see the writers of the song, so we'll know who to blame . . .

I guess they're singing the same song.

Blake is up first. Man, this song sucks. If I were R-Dawg, I'd be saying something like, "That was totally the wrong song for you." Is Blake rolling his eyes because he's trying to make eye contact with the people in the upper balconies or because he can't believe he will have to record this if he wins? Plus, he's flat in a couple of spots.

How do you think the songwriters feel as Blake and the judges basically shred their song on national TV? Is it their fault or is it the fault of the people who picked it?

Now Jordin gets to try her hand at the same crappy song. She sounds better, but there's not much she can do with drivel like this. Was that Melinda with Chris and Phil? What was that look on her face? I think it was relief that she didn't have to sing this song. Jordin was better than Blake, but that's not saying much.

I'm going to pretend the last two songs were like "Highlander 2: The Quickening". That is, they never existed.

That and [Connor MacLeod voice=on]there can be only one.[/Connor MacLeod voice]

Oh, gawd! No, not FRC!!!!!! And AI superfan Kathy Griffin. Where's the Gaykin?

I think the judges all want Jordin to win. Either they're trying to lull her fans into a false sense of security or they want her to win in a landslide.

Of course, in my opinion, I think everyone knows she's a better singer and that going in, this was her night to lose.

Blake would be better to see live but Jordin probably has more upside. Plus, since she's younger, maybe the producers/19E/Freemantle think they can manipulate her easier than they could with Blake.

Assuming Jordin wins, she could be every bit as successful as Kelly or Carrie (it wouldn't take much to outdo Rueben, Fantasia or Taylor.

Chris is on and they're out of time. This will be just like the night he was eliminated . . .

But no, they let the show run over. Perhaps to show him their end of the year montage (or perhaps to cut into the 2 hour DWTS marathon finale).

I'll be back in a bit. I have to call my mother on her birthday, but I'll be back with the DWTS finale.

High Lord. I'll be back.

Dancing With the Stars

It should be no secret by now that I think Apolo and Julianne should win this thing. Joey and Kym should finish in second and Laila & Maks in a not-too-distant third.

That's how they finished in last night's scoring.

We start off with mounds of filler. It's good to see John O'Hurley. I could do without them reminding us of how the show was rigged for ABC's homer to win, though.

In other news, according to the internet (which is never wrong), Julianne and her fiancee have called off their wedding. She says she's still together with "former dancer" Zach Wilson. But is that just a cover? Mrs. High Lord thinks the two of them owe the human race no less that four super-cute offspring. Let the rumour mill shift into overdrive!

I think Apolo needs to pull some strings and get me into the Asian Hall of Fame.

Is there really a two hour results show for DWTS? Maybe I should just watch the tape later and forward though all of the filler.

I was talking with my mom (Happy Birthday!) for most of the first half of the show and only saw bits and pieces of Apolo & Julianne's paso and Joey and Kym's Star Wars dance. Laila and Maks are on now and I really don't see the point of these dances, other than to fill time.

Everyone's gotten 30s and I expect Laila & Maks to get the same, too. They're already in third place, so it's not like these scores make much of a difference.

Do we really have to watch another hour of this?

Okay, now we're going to find out who is the first couple to be eliminated tonight . . . . I'll bet it's Laila & Maks.

And its . . . [drumroll please] . . . Laila & Maks.

Who didn't see that one coming? Now we just have to wait another 40 minutes to find out who wins.

Okay . . . through the magic of the internet, that time has passed and Apolo and Julianne won! Woo-hoo!

Now get out of there kids and start making those super-cute babies!

They were the best dancers this season, and most improved. Joey put me off by being a little bit cocky and I think that by being a semi-professional dancer to begin with, he just showed how good Apolo became of the course of the season.

That's one results show down, one more to go.

High Lord. Out.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Dancing With the Stars: Dancing Finale

We've got a big week this week. The final performance shows of DWTS and AI are on back to back.

Dancing is a threeway, while Idol has only two left. Monday night is for dancing so we'll be talking tonight about Apolo, Joey and Laila.

If this year is anything like the last season, the judges will abdicate their responsibilities and we're going to see lots of inflated scores which effectively will put the fate of the dancers in the hands of the audience. Mrs. High Lord has her Len Goodman voodoo doll handy so if the ornery Brit tries to job her guy (Apolo) again this week, don't be surprised if the judge in the middle suddenly keels over with massive internal hemorrhaging or a sudden heart attack.

The show is only an hour tonight, and the big question is which of the pros is going to screw their celeb with some sub-par choreography? I think we should start a pool on how many stupid things Samantha Harris can say that will incur an awkward silence from one of the dancing pairs.

Of the remaining three, Laila has been crowned the best of the women, Apolo and Julianne should be required to breed and Joey was the early frontrunner.

Going in the lead off spot are Laila and Maks. I think she is the most awkward of the dancers because she's not as light on her feet as the other guys who are more nimble. My personal opinion is that she's good, but overrated. I don't see her personal charm and it's my unsubstantiated opinion that she's getting some votes by trading on her father's name.

Their first dance is the paso doble, which is okay, even if Maks comes off looking super-gay (not that there's anything wrong with that). I'm not blown away; it's two minutes of aiiiight for me. Apolo's paso from a couple of weeks ago blew this one out of the water. The judges fawn all over her, but it wasn't that good. If they give her 10s, I'll be a little surprised.
The Judges's Scores: 10-9-10
The High Lord's Score: 8

Next up are the World's Cutest Couple™. The judges picked th rumba for Apolo and Julianne. Is that really a dress Julianne is wearing? If Laila got 29 for the last dance, these two had better get 30. The chemistry between them is obvious (without the seemingly-prerequisite are-they-a-couple-or-aren't-they chatter) and their dance is fantastic. What the hell are Len and Carrie Ann talking about? They obviously want Joey and/or Laila to win. I'm holding Mrs. High Lord back from reaching through the TV to throttle Len.
The Judges's Scores: 9-9-10
The High Lord's Score: 10

Going last are Joey and Kym. I think he's a good dancer, but his cockiness puts me off. They start off with the cha-cha. Is this really a cha-cha? It seems more like a bunch of break dancing with a little bit of latin mixed in. Len should like it, though. [rolls eyes] Carrie Ann has it right. If they ripped up Apolo for the last dance, they had better put them in third for this.
The Judges's Scores: 9-8-9
The High Lord's Score: 8

Now we get to the freestyle rounds where I guess everything goes. They're calling this a paso, but I don't think that's what this is. The single best freestyle dance was Jerry with the 'fro. This one is good, too, but Laila looks heavy on her feet. I don't think she's the best dancer among the celebs. Part of it may be that she's not built like other female dancers, but it seems that she's trying a little too hard. Stripping Maks doesn't make me want to vote for her.
The Judges's Scores: 9-8-9
The High Lord's Score: 8

After inflating the first dance's scores for Laila, the judges seem to be coming back to earth.

Who would have thought there would ever be hip-hop dancing on DWTS? If they don't get a 30 for this, it will be criminal. They're obviously having fun and pulled out all the stops on their tricks. Mrs. High Lord says they shouldn't be doing that much work because they might hurt the baby they created during their earlier dance. I think they should be on the other dancing show.
The Judges's Scores: 10-10-10
The High Lord's Score: 10

With 13 minutes left in the show, Joey and Kym go in the Pimp Spot. He's wearing a suit which seems out of character. Here come the breakaways . . . Unlike Tony from season 2, Kym doesn't screw her celeb with crappy choreography. It wasn't as good as Apolo's but it was close. They threw in a lot of tricks and while disco isn't my favouite, but it should put them into a tie for 2nd place. The judges are going to give them 10s.
The Judges's Scores: 10-10-10
The High Lord's Score:

With the dancing done and the voting already underway, Apolo and Julianne are in the lead with only three point separating them from Laila and Maks in third place.

I think Apolo and Julianne should win. They're the best pair and he's the best of the celeb dancers. If there's an encore tomorrow they should get it with their freestyle, but then again, they have to do one more dance for scores. I think despite the attempts by the judges to hose them, they're still going to win.

That's it for now. I think I'm going to turn off all my appliances now and go to bed since I have to find some way to pay for the highest gas prices in the history of the United States (even after taking inflation into account).

Tomorrow is the big results show for DWTS and the final showdown between Jordin and Blake.

High Lord. Out.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

There will be rioting in the streets

After last night's show and some of the things that have been circulating on the internet today, I think it's safe to say that a bunch of people are going to be really, really pissed off in an hour.

One of the final three has to get sent packing, but fans of the show seem to be split fairly evenly over who it should be. Even DialIdol says this week is a statistical dead heat between the three remaining singers. I think this final three is a solid group; there's not a Jasmine Trias among them.

Plus they're all close to the same level of talent and popularity, which contrasts to other years when Vonzell and Elliott were just happy to be there. I can't believe I'm going to sit through another hour-long results show which should be six minutes long.

Can we get Homer to replace Seacrest permanently?

While we sit through the filler, I'd like to offer some thoughts on a few other subjects:
  • When the dust settles from the Michael Vick's Dog-gate, he had better get at least a two game suspension. If it turns out that he knew about the fighting at the house he owned and was complicit, he had better get four games. If he was active in the dog fighting ring, then he deserves no less than 8 games. I'm no lover of dogs, but that's against the law, and if the league is worried about it's off-the-field image, they need to be willing to hold their high-profile players just as accountable as other the other guys (Chris Henry, Tank Johnson).

  • "Notes From the Underbelly" on ABC (right before American Idol) is very, very funny.

  • Battlestar Galactica is the best show on TV, even if it's sci-fi. It's killing me that I have to wait until January for it to come back. Is Starbuck the 12th Cylon? Are we going to see a whole line of her or is she going to be in Lee's head like Six is in Baltar's? If Hera is the future for the humans and Cylons, what does that mean for Nicholas (Tyrol and Cally's son)?

  • The next four weeks can't pass fast enough. We're flying to Orlando to spend some time with friends and family and then it's the western Caribbean for us. Next year, I think we're going to Hawaii.

  • I just bought one of those Stanley MaxLife tripod flashlights and it's really, really cool.

  • An ad for the new Transformers movie just came on. I'm sure my former roommate Kendrick has been moist over this for the last few months.
Jordin was crying and now Blake's dad is crying, too. And so are the little girls taking pictures of Blake with their camera phones. Was that Ashley?

Seacrest introduces Elliott and I think my friend Jennifer just had an Idolgasm.

Someone get Nick Arrojo on the phone stat!, we're in the middle of a Code 14-B.

Elliott sounds good, though. If he had waited a year to audition, he would have wiped the floor with this season's crew.

Did anyone else catch Seacrest saying "Coming up next . . . blah, blah, blah . . . And Melinda goes home"?

Do you think he was meaning her homecoming or that she's getting whacked? Hmmm . . . let the conspiracy talk begin!

Why the hell is Maroon 5 on the show? Aside from allegedly taking their name as a Star Wars reference, they're just taking up space on my TV. Of course they have an album to pimp. Get on with the results!!!!

Jordin is the first to get the results and she's safe!

There goes my pick to be eliminated. That means Blake or Melinda is going to get whacked. A lot of folks want a Blake/Jordin finale and they just might get it.

Melinda gets her results next and she's going home. The most polished singer got the boot. I guess her consistency didn't pay off, although it might for her in the long run (see Aiken, Clay and Daughtry, Chris). I guess Seacrest's foreshadowing turned out to be true.

I will say I am a little surprised, but I think the final three were really the three strongest singers of this year's crop. And someone had to go home. I doubt Melinda will return to the background, though.

High Lord. Out.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

The Clive Davis Wheel of Death™

With three singers left, they're each singing three songs to go along with all of the requisite filler. In years past, the judges have picked one song, the singer gets a "personal choice" and Clive Davis picks the third song.

Last year, Clive's choices were so gawd-awful, Randy "Song Choice" Jackson told VCM that Clive's choice for her ("I Believe I Can Fly") was bad, apparently forgetting that she didn't pick it. We'll see if he picks more trainwrecks this year.

After a non-shocker last week, I'm wondering if this is the week we get a shocker, perhaps Melinda. More on that later.

There are three singers left, and while other people have called this season a snoozer, it seems to me that the three singers left are all solid, much like last year's crop. If any of them win this year, it won't be like Jasmine Trias crashing the party. This year isn't even like season 2 or season 4 when there were two clear frontrunners and two people (K-Lo and Vonzell) who were just happy to be there.

I think this final trio is more like last year's when people would have been just as happy with any of the three winning. One thing I like about this group is that each is different. Melinda is the polished pro who will excel at the standards. Jordin is the young girl, pretty and full of pep (plus she's taller than Seacrest). Blake is wholly unique and has clearly been the best guy this season (but still not a better singer than Anwar or a better stage performer than Chris Daughtry).

Tomorrow is going to be a tough call; any of these three can win it.

As of 10 minutes before the show, I'm picking Melinda to go home. Note that I reserve the right to change this as the show progresses. My rationale is this: Who's picked up Lakisha's votes? Where did they go?

They're probably not going to Blake. That means they'll split between Melinda and Jordin. I'm betting that more go to Jordin. Lakisha is a belter and those fans will go to Melinda but it seems to me that Jordin is going to get the tweenie votes.

Speaking of Jordin, she's up first and Simon picked her first song. It's "Wishing On a Star". I wonder why "the producers" picked the second song and not Clive. Has he fallen out of favour with the show? Or did they realise that he was purposefully screwing with the singers last year when he picked those songs? Jordin is good; she resists the temptation to oversing.

And Ryan still can't find a razor. If I promise to give Idol Gives Back $50, can I designate $3 of it to get Seacreast a Bic?

Mrs. High Lord is still fuming over what Len did to Apolo and Julianne last night. Check out this article that says some interesting things about how DWTS may be manipulating some of the drama for the show.

Next up is BBB and Paula picked "Roxanne" for him, which he could either do well or he could bomb. He's certainly no Sting, but he's not bad either. He covers it well; it's different enough to claim that it wasn't a straight cover, but he doesn't mess with the arrangement and draw the ire of the judges for changing up a classic.

On these nights, when they've only got three singers left and an hour long show, why do they make them sing three songs? Given that Fox isn't going to reduce the amount of filler, why not actually let them sing a whole song?

DW gets a meeting with the governor of the great state of Tennessee, but no huge public greeting (I wonder why not). She's singing "I Believe in You and Me" by Whitney. Oddly, Randy "Don't Ever Try to Sing Whitney, Celine or Mariah" Jackson chose this song. I wonder if he's going to chide her on song choice. Melinda's vocals are close to flawless; I heard a couple of bad notes, but nothing that derails the performance. She has a lot of vocal control, something that's underappreciated on this show.

The "Not Clive" producers picked "She Works Hard for the Money" as Jordin's second song and it's a curious selection. I guess they were inspired by her professed love for the 80s with this song. It wasn't great, but it wasn't bad either. The song choice did her no favours.

Blake gets the second random email of the night just so AI can fit in some more product placement. He gets "This Love" by Maroon 5, who not coincidentally I'm sure, is performing tomorrow night (that tidbit provided by Mrs. High Lord who read it somewhere today). I dislike this song but Blake does as well as he can with it. The song easily lends it to his beat-boxing and doesn't ask too much of him vocally. I think he's going to sail into the finals tomorrow night because of all the voters he's picked up lately. For the last two weeks, according to DialIdol, he's never been in danger and since then, he's picked up the bulk of Chris and Phil's voters, so I think he'll do well.

The last of the Nigel's choice is "Nutbush City Limits" for Melinda. She's back in rocker mode and once again, the song choice does her no favours. It might have been better if they had picked a song more than 20 people knew. Maybe Tina Turner is going to be on the show tomorrow, too. The judges fawn over her, but I just didn't see it.

Jordin's song choice is "I (Who Have Nothing)" and she oversings a couple of spots. Her tone is good, but I thought she would have picked a younger, more contemporary song. It wasn't bad, but I don't think she finished as strong as her fans would have liked.

After sharing the stage with Sir Mix-A-Lot, Blake is covering Robin Thicke (who has already inexplicably performed on the show so he probably won't be back again tomorrow). I'm not crazy about the song, but then again, I'm an old guy now. I think I would have preferred the full version of "Baby Got Back" to this. He was good but not fantastic. This song won't appeal to the older set, but it might solidify his support among the younger viewers (and voters). Simon is right when he says Blake goes for it every week.

Getting the pimp spot is Melinda. Her song is "I'm a Woman" and now we see her at home with the crowd getting a street named after her. This should be good because I think it will let her perform. Her vocals are near perfect and she looks like she's having fun. She gets some stage time with the backup singers, perhaps emphasizing that she's no longer one of them.

The Good
Jordin, "Wishing On a Star"
Melinda, "I'm a Woman"
The Bad
Blake, "Roxanne"
Blake, "This Love"
Blake, "When I Get You Alone"
Jordin, "I (Who Have Nothing)"
Jordin, "She Works Hard for the Money"
Melinda, "I Believe In You and Me"
Melinda, "Nutbush City Limits"

The Ugly
no one

I think Blake is a shoo-in to advance to next week. I'd say the other spot is 50-50. If Melinda goes through, it will be due to her consistency and Jordin stumbling tonight. If Jordin advances, she needs to thank the legions of Lakisha fans who came over to her side.

This is a tough week to call. I think Jordin did herself no favours with her final song choice and the fact that the other songs picked for her were at least 20 years old.

Who should go home: Jordin
Who will go home: Jordin

I'm only making this call because I think I picked a Blake-Melinda finale back when this whole thing started. Next week will come down to Blake vs. Jordin/Melinda.

I'll leave you for now with this and be back in an hour with the DWTS results. If Apolo gets eliminated or is even in the bottom 2 and Mrs. High Lord throws something through the big screen, I may be taking up a collection tomorrow for a new TV.

High Lord. I'll be back.

Okay, thanks to the magic of the internet (and blog post editing), I'm back.

Mrs. High Lord was yelling at the TV when Laila and Maks were declared safe, leaving her guy Apolo and Ian in the bottom 2.

I think this means Ian's getting whacked.

Everyone I've talked to says that Apolo and Julianne got hosed last night. I can't believe they're in danger of going home.

And it's Ian and Cheryl. No threepeat. And no new TV for the High Lord.

Len had better watch out next week. If he screws Apolo over again, I think Mrs. High Lord and her friends will take out a hit on him.

High Lord. Out.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Three guys, a girl and a pizza place

Or something like that. We're down to four dancers left, plus three judges who sometimes don't know what the hell they're talking about, one superflous host and one person who takes unintentional comedy and turns it up to eleven.

They're going to eliminate someone tomorrow night (probably Ian) and now it's time to dance.

Apolo and Julianne are first, and he is the new frontrunner. He's peaking at the right time (Emmitt) instead of too early (Stacy). He gets to pick a style and they're starting with a quickstep. He wants to be the first person to get 60 points in a night and they just might do it. He's certainly a better dancer this time than when he did the quickstep before. I don't know I'd give it a 10, but it was very close. One thing they've got going for them is that they have mad chemistry. Like John/Edyta and Cheryl/Drew chemistry. Not like Cheryl and Ian this year, but they could not only win, but they could run away with it.
The Judges's Scores: 10-10-10
The High Lord's Score:

Next up are Ian and Cheryl, who are basically dead dancers walking. I think my problem with them is that he seems robotic and they don't have any chemistry together. I think she's doing as much as she can with what she's got (and that's not a lot). I'd hate to be them following Apolo and Julianne. They've picked the jive and the tango so we'll so how it works out. This is the strangest tango music I think I've every heard. He still looks like he's counting along in his head (either that or alphabetising his shopping list). I think it helps him that the tango is kind of a "stiff" dance, which plays into his natural uptight posture. The judges do some coaching in their critiques which is a bad sign. They get 28, which seems inflated to me. But then again, what do I know?
The Judges's Scores: 9-10-9
The High Lord's Score: 7

The only girl left is shown feuding with her partner, so we'll see if it works out. Laila and Maks are also doing the quickstep and she invites him to her home. I'm having a flashback to middle school with the song, which may or may not be a good quickstep song. I think she looks stiffer than Apolo. I think she's taking the contest more seriously and it's cutting into her fun time. They were much better than Ian and Cheryl, but not as good as Apolo and Julianne. If the judges gave Ian 9s and 10s, they'll inflate her score, too.
The Judges's Scores: 10-10-10
The High Lord's Score:

After some product placement by ABC/Disney and just a little bit of pandering for votes, Joey and Kym are up with a foxtrot. He looks good, certainly better than Ian, but still not in the same league as Apolo right now. They're forgoing stunts which is a good move. They look elegant and smooth and that should get them lots of points with the judges.
The Judges's Scores: 10-10-10
The High Lord's Score:

Len, who we find out was a champion latin dancer, goes to visit each of the dancers and that fills some time.

Apolo opens the latin round and Mrs. High Lord reiterates her assertion that he and Julianne should be required to breed after the show ends. They were, of course, fab. If they don't get another 30, it will be a crime. Of course, Len rains on their parade. It was hot.
The Judges's Scores: 10-9-10
The High Lord's Score: 10

It looks like Ian has decided that if he's going out, he's going to do it in style. I still think he's going to be the one going home. The Elvis schtick shows a little bit of personality, but still doesn't cover for his deficiencies when compared to Joey and Apolo. Bruno makes a Sanjaya reference, which will probably be the kiss of death. I'll be the judges inflate their score. And . . . yup. I think Ian is benefiting from having been with Cheryl, who is probably getting as many votes as he is.
The Judges's Scores: 10-10-10
The High Lord's Score: 8

I think the judges have gone 10-happy. Maybe there's a conspiracy to make sure that the judges scores are even.

Laila and Maks follow them. They've always been the judges's pets and will probably benefit again. She seems kind of slow for a latin dance, but Len raves, which means they'll get a 60 for the night.
The Judges's Scores: 10-10-10
The High Lord's Score: 9

Last to go are Joey and Kym. They're doing a high energy jive and if they get praise from the judges it will be well-deserved (unlike the last couple of dances). Technically, Joey gets to show off how good he can be when he's not focusing too much on the stunts. Kym has really coached him up. How can Len say that Apolo and Julianne were too raunchy when he tells Joey he's got something that's much bigger than everyone else's.
The Judges's Scores: 10-10-10
The High Lord's Score: 10

Apolo and Julianne got hosed by the judges (read: Len) tonight. Their cha-cha-cha was top notch, but he screwed them out of the top prize. If they are in the bottom 2 or go home tomorrow, it will be his fault.

I think Ian should be the one who is sent packing. He's the most inferior of the remaining celebrity dancers. The other three have show consistency over the past few weeks and while Ian's been consistent, he hasn't been great.

There may be a shocker when the results are announced. Laila might be in the bottom 2 if Ian/Cheryl's fan base comes through for them, and Apolo might be in danger if his voters don't put out tonight.

I'm still picking Ian to go home, though.

Mrs. High Lord is going to sign Len up for all sorts of telemarketing lists after what he did to "her" guy Apolo.

High Lord. Out.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Happy Anniversary, Mrs. High Lord

If you get a minute check out what my friend Jennifer has to say about this season of American Idol. She is seriously underwhelmed by the singers on the show this year and she says it's not their fault.

She asserts that it's because American Idol has done away with the "human interest" angles that bought people votes and made them interested in the singers personally, not just their vocal (dis)abilities. While I agree with this to some extent, I think the true downfall has more to do with the greedy bastards at Fox.

Instead of having half-hour straight-up results shows, they have hour-long extravaganzas, full of people we don't care about (Akon, Robin Thicke), product placement, advertising and self-indulgence (Seacrest's wannabe-Jaywalking segments). It started last year with the guests artists being more interested in pimping their latest CD than actually coaching or giving feedback and only continues this year.

This year, it's even worse. Over the past few years, what might be considered "the spectacle of the show" has taken over. The singers used to have canned music to sing along with. Now there's the monstrous orchestra and band that overpowers the ones without the big voices. Almost every results show runs over time because they can't get all of the product placement in. Jennifer says the show has become the star, not the singers.

And she's right.

What will it take for American Idol to get back to being the simple talent search that it started out to be? A drop in ratings? Viewer boycotts? Simple outrage?

I've railed against the show on a number of issues but how do you try and tell Nigel & Company to give up its cash cow?

Back to the results.

According to DialIdol, Blake and Jordin are safe while Lakisha and Melinda are in the bottom 2 with Lakisha as the person left without a chair when the music stops.

I don't know what they're going to do for an hour.

After the obligatory recap, I was reminded how much I liked Blake, how good Jordin was even on an off-night and how Lakisha seems to have peaked about two months ago. Plus, Simon showed how much higher the bar is for Melinda than it is for the rest of them (maybe it should be; she is, after all, a professional singer).

Someone buy Ryan a razor.

While we wait for Pink to sing (why do we care about hearing her?), I'd like to take this moment to wish my wonderful wife a happy anniversary. That's right, on this day, way back in 1998, Mrs. High Lord married me. I don't know what the hell she was thinking then, but she's put up with my crap for the past 9 years, so happy anniversary, honey. I love you.

Back to the show. Pink is singing the theme to NBC's Sunday Night Football and now she's inexplicably on American Idol. Yawn. Couldn't they get K-Lo from Celebrity Fit Club or Diana off Broadway for a night?

After the bad Ford commercial comes a group sing! Yea! Too bad the screwed up the audio at the beginning.

To me, this medley only highlights how hard it is to do Barry Gibb songs and how out of her league Lakisha is compared to the others. I know looks should factor into it, but she's not a very attractive person and has next to zero stage presence. Yes, she's got a big voice, but unlike the shows other "big girls (Frenchie, Kimberley Locke and Mandisa), she just doesn't belong on stage. Let the hate mail begin.

Simon doing Paula's seal-clap was funny as hell, too.

I hate filler. Yawn. I liked the "Invisible Woman" gag.

To fill the time, Mrs. High Lord and I are trying to plan next year's anniversary. We're going to the western Caribbean next month (see the countdown ticker) at the above right). Next year, we're thinking of either cruising Hawaii, the Med, East Asia or taking a land tour of Europe. I had a buddy who said he cruised the Med and all around the world, but that was on the Enterprise, and I don't think Mrs. High Lord would go for that.

If you guys have any suggestions or comments about vacation ideas, please let me know.

Time for the bottom 2.

We get the summary for each.

Jordin, safe.

Barry is on and he looks rough. What happened to his chin?

Melinda, safe.

That leaves BBB and CSM. My guess is CSM. I think she knows it, but if there's another shocker (a la LaToya or Chris), Blake might get whacked.

Simon is with me and after a few minutes of hand-wringing, Blake is declared safe.

They let Lakisha sing her whole song before cutting to local news.

We're left with Blake, Jordin and Melinda in the finals, something I predicted last week. We'll see who's left standing after the finals.

Let me know if you have any suggestions as to what Mrs. High Lord and I can do for our next anniversary.

High Lord. Out.

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Final Four

Cue the blog.

Two thirds of the field is gone. Four singers remain and I'd say there are three people who should be in the finals and one other person.

In case you haven't been keeping up with the blog over the past few weeks, I believe that the finals should be Blake, Jordin and Melinda. Lakisha needs a big night to stave off elimination.

It's Bee Gees night, so that means disco and that Ryan can't find a razor. You'd think that for as much money as he's pulling down, he could at least afford a personal stylist.

They're each singing twice . . . is that two Bee Gees song or one Bee Gees song and one other?

American Idol is apparently trying to remove the hex that plagues the lead off spot and DW is going first. I'm not a big Bee Gees fan so I prefer her voice to Barry's falsetto. It was solid and her performance had her moving around the stage. Her problem may be that she set the bar for herself so high that if she's not fantastic, she had a bad night, even if other people had the same performance, they might be lavishing praise up on them.

How are they going to get two songs in for each of the singers if Seacrest is blabbing so much about the AT&T Wireless product placement.

Next up is BBB and this theme seems right up his alley. I'm not sure about the jacket, though. The reverb is kind of annoying. I'm not a fan of disco, but I really like this performance. Mrs. High Lord says he just blew the roof off the place and if his second song is 100% different, then they should just declare him the winner. Randy didn't like it, but he was wrong.

I think the judges are going to be hard on everyone because the Bee Gees are so hard a theme. I don't even like the Bee Gees singing the Bee Gees, so how well can these kids really do?

CSM is singing "Staying Alive", which is her theme song this week. To me, she's the one in danger of getting whacked this week. At least she didn't go AFE on us this week. If they ripped Blake a minute ago, the judges should chew her up and spit her out. I don't think it's the singers, though; it's the theme. I hope they get a little bit of freedom to go out of the Bee Gees catalog with their second song.

As some more filler, Jordin gets the random fan email and we are reminded once again that she's still in high school. She succumbs to the AFE and sings "To Love Somebody" which wasn't originally recorded in falsetto, which may be her saving grace. I give this one a big aiiiiight because I wasn't blown away, but the judges should love it.

Now that we're once through the batting order and Melinda gets to go again. Barry gets in a shot at the show by asking why they don't sing the whole song; I've been asking that for years. Of course the answer is that if they let the kids sing (like they do on Rock Star), they wouldn't get in all of the homoerotic banter between Seacrest and Simon, the product placement and all that advertising. She's singing "How Can You Mend a Broken Heart". I'm not crazy about it (personal preference, not a reflection on her ability), but she gets in the big power note in the middle of the song that lets her show off her pipes.

For his second song, Blake goes deep into the Barry Gibb songbook with "This Is Where I Came In". He's back in beat-box mode and I like the performance. He shows us that he is the most original of the singers, even if his vocal skills aren't in the same league as other people who have advanced this far. Randy and Simon are haters, but I thought it was great.

Now Lakisha comes back to the power ballad and I think I'm going to hate it. I'll give it a chance though. To me, this is just another big Lakisha song and that makes me dislike it. Plus, I know this isn't supposed to factor in, but I just don't think she's a very attractive person. It's not that she's a big girl, but I don't think AI wants her to win. And that last note didn't help her.

In the Pimp Spot, Jordin is whipping out some Barbara. At least she didn't give in to the temptation to sing Celine. I need to check my friend Mike's website and see if he has a "Til Jordin is 18" countdown clock on it. She is vocally strong, although she oversings a couple of places. Definitely much better than the first song. I like that she's just standing there and singing, even if she goes too big a couple of times.

The Good
Blake, "Dancing"
Blake, "This Is Where I Came In"
Melinda, "How Can You Mend a Broken Heart"
Melinda, "Inside and Out"

The Bad
Jordin, "A Woman In Love"
Jordin, "To Love Somebody"
Lakisha, "Run to Me"
Lakisha, "Staying Alive"

The Ugly

Simon said Blake had an off night. Randy seemed to be drinking Simon's Kool-Aid and Paula's expectations were way too high. All of the negative criticism directed at the singers wasn't their fault. I don't know why they waited so long to have Bee Gees night. This should have been earlier in the season.

The clear winner tonight was Lakisha. She wasn't great, but she got good feedback and Jordin had an off night. That means there is a slim window open where she could advance past Jordin into the finals.

Melinda's strong body of work will carry her into next week and Blake benefits from Phil and Chris's eliminations last week as the only guy. The Pimp Spot should help Jordin, but I think this will be closer than we think.

Who should be eliminated: Lakisha

If you remember last year in this spot, I was one of the few people who correctly predicted that Chris would be eliminated. If I were going to pick a shocker, it would be Jordin. However, I think this year is going to go according to schedule.

Who will be eliminated: Lakisha

I just don't think that Lakisha has picked up new voters and that will be the death of her. I think she's got a core of steady voters and has picked up a few along the way, but not as many as Jordin and Blake have.

The wild card in this is Melinda, who has been the frontrunner from week 1. Will this week's "substandard" performance hurt her? Will her fans get complacent? I don't think so, but we've seen stranger things in the past.

I'm going to publish this and then come back with the Dancing With the Stars results.

High Lord. (Almost) Out.

The filler tonight wasn't as bad as usual. At least there were no psychics.

We get the results amid singing by Nelly Furtado (who was on last year singing "Promiscuous"). Billy Ray & Karina, bottom 2.

Ian and Cheryl, safe. There's a shocker. I had him in the bottom 2 for sure.

The Master P bit was funny.

More results: Laila & Maks, safe. Apolo & Julianne, safe.

That leaves Joey and Kym in the bottom 2, which is surprising. I think that spells doom for Billy Ray, but everyone knew that going in, right?

As expected, it's Billy Ray and Karina who get the boot. He was the worst dancer left and I'm surprised he outlasted some of the others who had a little more talent but fewer fans.

That leaves Ian as the one guy who should get sent packing next week leaving the should-be finals as Apolo, Joey & Laila.

High Lord. Out. Again.

Monday, May 07, 2007

Dancing With the Stars, 5 people left

I'm not blogging live tonight; Mrs. High Lord had some people over so I left for a while. I got back in time to see Joey and Kym's Mambo so I'll start now and then watch the first dances.

Joey and Kym looked good. As I've said before, Joey has a leg up on the others because he was a professional dancer . . . well, not just a dancer, but boybanders have a history of doing well at this and their mambo was no exception.
The Judges's Scores: 10-9-10
The High Lord's Score: 9

Next up are Billy Ray and Karina and aside from his bad Muhammad Ali impression, it wasn't bad. He's clearly the worst dancer left, but he's trying and he looks like he's having fun. But he's not helping himself by feuding with the judges.
The Judges's Scores: 6-7-7
The High Lord's Score:

Laila and Maks are doing a jive. How is a jive a latin dance? Is anything that's not a traditional ballroom dance considered "latin"? I don't love it and I don't hate it. It's a big aiiiight for me. Nothing special but nothing bad either. I wonder if the judges are inflating her scores this week, too. The judges rip Maks for the choreography and you'd think the pros would have learned something from Tony who killed Stacy's chances in the finals back in season 2 with bad choreography.
The Judges's Scores: 9-8-9
The High Lord's Score: 8

Until he dropped her, Apolo and Julianne had 10s for their paso doble, but they should win based on this performance. Not only do they have incredible chemistry (Mrs. High Lord says they should be contractually obligated to breed after this show), but he is actually a pretty good technical dancer. If Ian can be described as "robotic", the Apolo is "da man"; he's great to watch because he looks like he's having fun.
The Judges's Scores: 10-10-10
The High Lord's Score: 9 (should be a 10 except for the drop)

I'm going to say (without having seen all of the dances) that Billy Ray is going to get canned tomorrow. He knows it. Karina knows it. Everyone in the building knows it. He's the worst dancer left and if you don't believe it, you're either Billy Ray's mother or you don't know a single dadburned thing about dancing.

After rewinding the tape, it's time to see the early dances.

Ian and Cheryl start off the show with "It's Cold Outside". As I said before, he's technically good and Cheryl is her usual extraordinary self, but his big plastic smile just doesn't make him seem like he wants to win.
The Judges's Scores: 8-7-7
The High Lord's Score:

After a trip to the Derby, Joey and Kym show off their foxtrot. The number on his back is terribly funny. They look good, if a little slow. He looks like he wants to ham it up at any moment, but it was good. Bruno and Carrie Ann rip him for not being Joey enough, but crotchity old Len liked it. Mrs. High Lord wonders how he could "Joey up" the waltz.
The Judges's Scores: 9-9-8
The High Lord's Score: 8

I can't ever think of anyone other than Jake and Elwood singing "Stand By Your Man" but the DWTS singers are trying it anyway. Yech. Anyway, Billy Ray and Karina are next and they're okay. As usual, Karina tried to make up for Billy Ray, but I don't know how well it worked.
The Judges's Scores: 7-6-5
The High Lord's Score: 7

Laila's dad is there and she and Maks say they're bringing it for their waltz. It starts slow and then they glide around the floor. I liked Apolo and Julienne's paso better, but Laila is better than good, if not excellent.
The Judges's Scores: 9-9-9
The High Lord's Score:

Now we get to see The World's Cutest Couple and their tango. I don't know that I'd have picked "Jesse's Girl" for the tango. Interesting note, this is the only Billboard #1 song to correctly use the word "moot". I liked the dancing as usual. Apolo and Julienne have been under the radar--screened by the badness of some other dancers, the drama surrounding Billy Ray and the early frontrunner status of Laila and Joey--all season and now they're making their charge. Len hated it, but everyone else in the building loved it.
The Judges's Scores: 10-8-10
The High Lord's Score: 9

Scoring snafus aside, Ian and Cheryl are back with the rumba. It's another aiiiight for me as Cheryl prances around and tries to draw attention away from Ian. Do you think they just don't have any chemistry or is he just trying too hard? You can still kind of see him counting along in his head, which makes look robotic. Even Cheryl looks like she's uncomfortable around Ian.
The Judges's Scores: 8-8-9
The High Lord's Score:

Like American Idol, where everyone knows who should be in the finals (Blake, Jordin, Melinda), DWTS this year has three frontrunning couples and everyone else who is just trying not to be the slowest antelope in the herd.

If they go with the threeway finals again this year, they should be Apolo & Julienne, Joey & Kym, and Laila & Maks. The other two couples are fighting for fourth place.

I'll see you tomorrow night for Bee Gees night on the other show.

High Lord. Out.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

It's a two-fer!!

Seacrest starts the show and promises that there will not be any filler tonight. Did they somehow cut out 52 minutes?

We get a quick montage from last night which only reminds us how good Blake was and how bad Chris and Jordin were.

According to DialIdol, Jordin and Blake are safe and Lakisha and Chris are going to get canned.

If you believe that the votes count, it seems to me that the people who did well last week have an advantage because 70 million votes were cast then, but probably only 30-35 million this week. That means that unless they weight the votes for this week, Jordin's stumble this week won't hurt her as much as Lakisha's last week.

Of course, there are some conspiracy theorists who believe the votes don't count. I'm not going to get into this tonight, but since this technically isn't a contest, given some of the results, it certainly doesn't seem implausible to me.

Has Reuben lost some weight?

Why do they have guest artists who aren't obviously associated with the show? I'd rather have a group sing than an R&B performance from some effete white guy who does way too much falsetto. Or better, yet, instead of having Reuben plugging IGB, have Rueben sing! After all, wasn't he our American Idol.

Who the hell is Robin Thicke and why is he on the show? What kind of strings did Alan have to pull to get his kid on the show?

I had almost forgotten that Fantasia won (I've been in denial and I habitually pretend that LaToya was the season 3 Idol).

We're halfway through the show and Seacrest gets the front row to stand: DW, Lieutenant Ilia and CSM. My prediction: Phil's going home.

Melinda, safe.

That leaves Phil and Lakisha; Lakisha is safe. Phil's getting the boot.

We get to see Phil's video montage and lots of footage of his kids. If only he could do something about his funny-shaped head and if only he could put a whole song together that was strong instead of just two-thirds.

While Phil sings his way off, check out this article on the role each singer plays on the show.

I guess he's going back to Jax to cheer for my Jaguars and duty with the Navy. At least he gets to go on the tour.

That leaves Jordin, BBB and NIASS.

Seacrest immediately apologises to Jordin for last week and declares her safe.

Then it's time for another break. How many commercials do they have on each of these shows?

We're going to make Blake and Chris wait while Bon Jovi sings a song I don't know; it must be from the new album because I've never heard it before. I'd much rather hear a medley of their standards or have the guys show Chris how "Wanted Dead or Alive" should be done. I don't want to say this song was awful, but seriously, what the hell was this crap? Sing a song people actually like!

"Who Says You Can't Go Home"

"Never Say Goodbye" (after all, it is prom season)

"It's My Life"

"Bad Medicine"

Any of those would have been fine. Just sing something that would make people sing along!

I'm guessing that since we haven't been promised a shocker, that everyone and their brother knows that it's going to be Chris getting the boot. After all, does anyone believe for a minute that Blake is going home.

Have you heard anyone who didn't like Blake's arrangement last night? Anyone? Everyone I've talked to either loved his rendition of "You Give Love a Bad Name" or at least thought it was cool. And I grew up on Bon Jovi! It kicked ass! Whether you thought it was good or not, at least it was original. The same can not be said for anything Chris has done this year.

With 7 minutes left, we get the final results. They exchange some "You da man!" "No, you da man!" banter and then we find out that Chris indeed is the one getting canned.

That leaves the Final Four: Blake, Jordin, Lakisha and Melinda.

I'm making the call right now: Lakisha is going home next week and that will leave us with a strong top 3 and finale show.

We'll find out how things actually play out, but I have a feeling that I'm going to be right on this one.

High Lord. Out.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Livin' on a Prayer . . .

Bon Jovi night!!! Woo-hoo!

I guess. There's enough in the Bon Jovi catalog to be good. Hey, was that Antonella!?!?! And Gina!!! Gigi would have kicked ass on this night.

Seacrest tells us that they raised 70 million big ones on last week's non-elimination and then shows us a video montage of Bon Jovi. Is the whole band going to be there or just Jon? I guess it's just Jon and one of TOGs (the other guys-not Ritchie).

First up is Lieutenant Ilia and he should do well with this song. I still don't know that I like him. And he needs a hair makeover. He also needs to learn how to sing a whole song well. I thought he was shaky early on and to me he didn't get much better. I think he's in serious contention for tomorrow's double-elimination. Randy said it was Phil's best and I disagree. I hope the Dead Man's Spot lives up to its name this week.

With her stock rising, Jordin goes next singing "Living On a Prayer". There's some shouting and that's not good. I'm not quite going to say she stumbled, but on a night when Phil(!) drew rave reviews, this was not the night to resort to screaming. It wasn't awful, but it wasn't a good as she could have been either.

CSM doesn't know any Bon Jovi and she's doing a Bon Jovi song I've never heard. Lakisha, that outfit you're wearing in rehersal . . . my crazy aunt Matilda called and she wants her drapes back. Once again, she goes AFE on us and while it's not bad, I just don't find myself liking her. She's a belter, and that's about it. The judges loved her, but I just didn't see it.

After several weeks of "just singing the song", BBB is making over "You Live Love a Bad Name", one of my least favourite Bon Jovi songs. The vocals aren't great, but just doing something other than a straight cover gets him points to me. I think people watching this (whether they're Bon Jovi fans or not) will either love or hate his version. The performance itself it good, and I think Blake would be great to see in concert. I'm going to give him high marks, but if you don't care for his schtick, I could see how you could not like it.

Seacrest then tries to convince us that NIASS looks and sounds like Justin Timberlake. I'm not buying it because he sounds like ass and he looks like a dork. Plus, he forgets the words right in front of Jon. If you don't remember back to the 1989 MTV Video Music Awards, this was the song that started the "Unplugged" fad when Jon and Ritchie sang it (that was also the show that featured a kick-ass performance by the Cure of "Just Like Heaven"). I thought it was awful. Paula gushes all over him, but I think he should be in the bottom 3.

DW is in the Pimp Spot and she's apparently new to rock n' roll (which I don't buy). Unlike CSM, she's doing new things and she's good. This isn't one of my favourite songs, but she does a good job. I don't quite buy her as a rocker, but she won't be in any trouble tomorrow.

The Good

The Bad

The Ugly

Who should be in the bottom 3: Chris, Lakisha, Phil
Who will be in the bottom 3: Chris, Lakisha, Phil

If the finals aren't Blake, Jordin and Melinda, there will be rioting in the streets. Aside from Jordin not having a good night, the judges were unnecessarily kind to everyone.

Who should go home: Chris, Phil
Who will go home: Lakisha, Phil

I liked the show until they showed Dubya, but at least they're on showcasing a good cause.

To me, Lakisha and Phil will be the ones sent packing. Lakisha because she hasn't done anything new and Phil because his luck can't last forever.

That's my call for now; I'll update this in a few minutes once the DWTS results come on.

High Lord. Out. (for now)

Okay, so I sat through all the filler and now it's time for the Dancing With the Stars Results. The Jimmy/Guillermo/Tom skit was funny, but we just found out that John and Edyta just got eliminated.

That's not unexpected and I think John did really well, especially considering not only his age but the fact the John was two weeks late after Big Pussy backed out.

I'd say next week is going to be Billy Ray's time to go. Then it will be Ian and then a threeway shootout between Apolo, Joey and Laila.

High Lord. Out. Again.