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Author Topic: American Idol 2011  (Read 6138 times)
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CeeKay
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« on: January 19, 2011, 07:02:41 PM »

So, who's going to watch the possible trainwreck tonight?  I plan on catching it to see how the new crew does, plus the opening episodes are always the most humorous.
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Jimmy the Fish
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« Reply #1 on: January 19, 2011, 07:17:17 PM »

I'll be watching. I'm actually looking forward to this season. I think they're making enough changes in the format of the show so that's not going to be the crapfest it's been the last several seasons.

If anything, the cattle call audition shows are always entertaining for the trainwreck factor.
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« Reply #2 on: January 19, 2011, 07:23:28 PM »

Wednesday night softball double-header.  Thank goodness.  Otherwise my wife would probably have it on, and without anywhere else in the house to study I'd be inevitably subjected to it. 
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« Reply #3 on: January 19, 2011, 08:17:18 PM »

I'll probably watch it with the DVR in fast foward mode most of the time. 
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« Reply #4 on: January 19, 2011, 10:41:14 PM »

Quote from: Zinfan on January 19, 2011, 08:17:18 PM

I'll probably watch it with the DVR in fast foward mode most of the time. 

Yeah, same.
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« Reply #5 on: January 20, 2011, 02:33:56 AM »

dammit, just realized the red record light on my DVR isn't on  mad  I guess it's time to start thinking Tivo.....
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« Reply #6 on: January 20, 2011, 07:30:08 AM »

After the first two hour episode, I really like the change of Steven Tyler and J-Lo being judges. The switch made it painfully clear that the core group of Simon-Paula-Randy was getting really stale and adding a 4th in Kara was too much. Ellen Degeneres as a judge was a total joke. One thing I appreciated is that they did not give any camera time to the joke auditions where contestants showed up in a stupid costume, for example. Sure, they showed the usual number of horrible trainwreck auditions, but as deluded as those people were, they were actually serious in their desire to try out. The last couple of seasons, the cattle call auditions really irritated me to the point of being unwatchable because of the costumed idiots they kept showing.

The first set of auditions in New Jersey had some really good singers, and many of them surprisingly young. Lots of 16 year olds who can really sing. The kid from the Bronx and the girl from Kosovo were two that I remembered, partly for their singing, but also for the human interest side of their stories.

Steven Tyler had a couple of "dirty old man" moments with his comments to some of the 16 year old girls, but he was amusing. Personally I've always like J-Lo and she was fair and pretty supportive. Sort of like Paula Abdul without the drug addled blathering.

I look forward to the rest of the season, and I'm really looking forward to the start of the actual competition where the judges really start the serious criticism.
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« Reply #7 on: January 20, 2011, 09:45:52 AM »

well I caught the last half hour and thought it felt pretty tame, like they were playing it safe.
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« Reply #8 on: January 20, 2011, 01:14:23 PM »

Yeah, the jury's still out for me. On the one hand I missed some of the snark - I thought the judges were FAR too lenient on some of the singers. They were letting through people that Simon would have had thrown out on their ass after the first note. So I'm a little skeptical of the level of talent we'll see, though I hope I'm proven wrong.

On the other hand, it was refreshing to see new judges and J-Lo is far superior to Ellen, Kara, and Paula. I think Steven Tyler is here for his ego more than the show, but he's fun to watch (favorite line of the evening: "hellfire and save the matches, fuck a duck and see what hatches").
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« Reply #9 on: January 20, 2011, 06:56:59 PM »

I went in to it expecting it to be awful but came out liking what I saw. I thought Stephen Tyler would be a joke but he actually had some constructive comments along with a few witty ones. I also liked that he really got in to some of the auditions - like when he knocked on the table during one of the songs. J Lo was a turn off since she kept whining about having to say 'no' but I think she'll come around. Randy was Randy but not so annoying as he normally was - he's looking good too.

I liked that the voting was a lot quicker and a lot less informal. Before there would be the whole drama of hemming and hawing before someone said "yes/no". Now it was like "just give them the golden ticket" or "yes/yes/yes". I also liked there was hardly any segments of Ryan talking to contestants before/after they audition. I think that allowed them to show a lot more auditions which is what I want to see. And finally they showed just the right amount of bad auditions - very few.

Really the only thing they need to work on is dialing back the the melodramatic imagery during the sob stories. The family walking through a bad neighborhood, a quick shot of police arresting someone, the dangling phone. All a bit over the top for me.

Otherwise I had no complaints. It might actually be a good season.
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« Reply #10 on: January 20, 2011, 07:02:30 PM »

I FF'd through the whole 2 hours in about 20 minutes, was pretty much completely bored by the whole thing.  I like J-Lo but the judging was bland, particularly Steven Tyler who seemed to repeat the same phrase every time I stopped to listen.  None of the singers wowed me in the least, even the best ones they passed seemed mediocre and "pitchy".  The only thing I remember fromt he whole episode was that whacko Asian guy dancing around, the twin guy at the end and the girl with the giant stars on her big boobs (who was possibly the only one I thought sang well).   thumbsdown
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YellowKing
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« Reply #11 on: January 28, 2011, 02:33:51 AM »

God help me, this judging panel is starting to grow on me. I've always been one who delighted in Simon's nastiness, Paula's ditziness, and Randy's...dawginess. I couldn't help but think this carebear group of judges would be well nigh unwatchable. But every episode I find myself enjoying this kindler, gentler tone.

Randy hasn't changed much, but he seems to have fit smoothly into the role of "elder statesman" of the judging panel. No longer playing second fiddle to a couple of extreme personalities, he seems more comfortable, relaxed, and in control.

J-Lo is a bit of a pushover, but she's actually SANE and non-medicated. If she's a pushover, she's an honest pushover, and not one just because she sees rainbows and unicorns flying around the contestants' heads.

Steven Tyler. Yes, one can't help but think he is using the Idol stage as a spotlight. But when he judges (really judges, instead of just waiting to spring his latest quip), one detects something genuine going on in that egotistical little brain of his. He seems to care about these contestants and care about his role as a judge. I mean when he leaned down and whispered in that brain damaged girl's ears I damn near shed a tear.

Maybe I'm just becoming a softie in my old age, but I found myself smiling when I reached the end of last night's episode and realized about the harshest criticism was "Is this a joke?" It's not that they're letting through bad singers (though to be fair, some of the quality is probably below what would have been let through in past seasons). It's just that truly bad singers get met with a simple No No No, Thank you, Goodbye. I finished watching the show feeling good, not like some kind of sadistic monster. If that makes me crazy, then so be it. I'll take it.
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« Reply #12 on: January 28, 2011, 03:36:23 AM »

My favorite so far, Naima Adedapo

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tdj_2KrHCFk
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« Reply #13 on: January 28, 2011, 06:14:13 PM »

I find the new judges really refreshing. Honestly, after 9 seasons of Simon and Paula, the mean-spirited snarkiness was getting really old and really annoying. God forbid people actually try to be nice for once.

I've always liked J-Lo and I think she's great. Yes, she can be a pushover, but she has more industry cred than Paula, IMO.

Steven Tyler has really surprised me. While he does have some borderline dirty old man moments, which comes across as a bit creepy sometimes, he has a kind hearted side to him I don't think people knew he had. His actions toward the girl in the wheelchair the other night was touching but also last night, his exchange with Randy about being nice to people was also unexpected.

That last girl who auditioned in Nashville is definitely one to watch. Incredible voice.
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« Reply #14 on: January 28, 2011, 07:50:49 PM »

I'm in the same boat. I was expecting the worst but really enjoying it. I like the tighter format of quick comments/votes and not focusing so much on the bad/goofy auditions. Stephen Tyler is a big reason I'm enjoying it. I like his goofy comments and that he's also intently listening to each contestant and gets in to the auditions at time.

I'm interested in to hearing how they handle the live critiques during the actual show.

But so far one of the best seasons of Idol in awhile.
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« Reply #15 on: January 29, 2011, 12:45:31 AM »

Not nearly as bad as I feared but Randy still bugs.  Has he ever commented on a singers voice in relationship to the audition room?  Steven Tyler mentioned it once this season and now Randy has picked that up along with knocking the table during a song which of course Steven did first episode.  The reduction in trainwreck auditions and sthick routines is very welcome.
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rittchard
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« Reply #16 on: January 31, 2011, 11:23:53 PM »

Quote from: Jimmy the Fish on January 28, 2011, 06:14:13 PM

That last girl who auditioned in Nashville is definitely one to watch. Incredible voice.

Liked her a lot too, she reminded me of a young Kelly Clarkson, with better singing skills than Kelly did at the same stage.

I also liked the couple with the dumpy guy and his ex-girlfriend.  I thought they both sounded great, both together and apart.  I felt really sorry for him when they came out and he had no one to celebrate with, so now he's like my underdog vote.

This last episode definitely had some better talent thankfully, hopefully Hollywood will be good.
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rittchard
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« Reply #17 on: February 03, 2011, 07:33:37 PM »

My new favorite is last night's final guy, I'm just going to call him Seth Rogen because I am not as familiar with Fraggle Rock.  I'm just wondering if he's more of a "one trick pony" in terms of singing, but man did his one trick sound damn good, really blew me away.  The voice was incredible especially for a cute, geeky white boy.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2R1jQz6EZp4
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Jimmy the Fish
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« Reply #18 on: February 03, 2011, 10:21:59 PM »

That guy was incredible. It was probably the best audition the show has ever had in its 10 year history, IMO. I even replayed it on my TiVo, which I've never done for one of the cattle call auditions before.
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« Reply #19 on: February 03, 2011, 10:49:32 PM »

I thought he was great when he was in his comfort zone (i.e. when he was belting it out forcefully), but really seemed weak outside of that. Might have been nerves though. I can see him having problems later.
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« Reply #20 on: February 18, 2011, 03:09:37 PM »

Some great performances last night.

I was skeptic that seth rogen (Casey Abrams) would be able to shine when he was not in that comfort zone. Boy he proved me wrong last night. I thought his performance of Georgia on My Mind, playing a stand-up bass was outstanding. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vyPHi4DY4fk

He might run into popularity problems later on since he (at least for now), does not fit nicely into any genre, but regardless, should be fun to watch this season and definitely has that "true musician" vibe.

One girl that does fit nicely into the idol mold that I thought was great was Ashton Jones. Young, cute, and a powerhouse voice, she will be one to watch out for.  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5--6UTRbrfY

I was surprised with a few of the people they let through though (like deep-voice country dude and crack-ho schizo chick) but there still is another round of cuts coming next week.
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« Reply #21 on: February 18, 2011, 08:30:21 PM »

Yeah I was really impressed with the talent pool that showed up last night.   They could probably assemble an entire cast just based on 15 year olds.  It's going to be hard to whittle these ones down now.

I'm rooting for Seth Rogen (almost a sure thing to make it on the show), the little chubby cherub (I don't think he's going to make it), and that semi-Asian looking girl (50/50 - there are so many good girls this year).
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« Reply #22 on: February 24, 2011, 07:30:09 AM »

Holy cow, what drama tonight. Probably one of the most emotional gut-wrenching eliminations ever in 10 seasons of Idol. Chris Medina goes and J-Lo is absolutely CRUSHED to have to tell him he is out. Even Steven Tyler looked like he was going to lose it. I will continue to say that having Tyler and J-Lo has really revitalized the show. Jennifer is so sincere with her comments and emotions and people can really get behind that because we all feel the same thing for the most part. They cut some really good singers but the few they showed so far that have made it are all pretty strong singers.

Can't wait for part 2 Thursday night.
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« Reply #23 on: February 24, 2011, 01:36:38 PM »

Oh NO!

http://www.tmz.com/2011/02/23/casey-abrams-american-idol-hospitalized-top-24-stomach-pains-cedars-sinai-overnight/
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« Reply #24 on: March 03, 2011, 10:19:30 PM »

I have to say I'm pretty blown away by the quality of the talent this year.  Even some of the contestants I can't stand (the goofy glasses guy, the redhead doofus) are really good singers.  Some of them are too over the top for me (like the screaming Tourette's guy) but I can still appreciate their talent.  After they dump some of the fodder (and there really aren't too many), I'm thinking this could be the strongest Top 12 they've ever had in terms of raw singing talent.  I would love to see a Final 3 of that gay Luther guy, Seth Rogen and Kelly Clarkson 2.0 (sorry I can't remember any of their names yet).
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« Reply #25 on: March 03, 2011, 11:24:57 PM »

The talent among the girls is ridiculous. They are definitely better than the guys, who are pretty good as a group themselves.

There's going to be a few girls who are going to get eliminated tonight even though they sang really well. J-Lo will probably have another epic cry-down.
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« Reply #26 on: March 05, 2011, 02:14:58 AM »

Well they saved my two early favorite girls tonight, Naima and Asthon. Will be hard for them to come up from the back of the pack, but still happy they made it. I was surprised the judges saved Stefano over Robby but over all a good top 13. The only girl I did not think really deserve to be there was Rodriguez, but we shall see I guess.
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« Reply #27 on: March 05, 2011, 04:19:29 AM »

Wow, I thought Karen Rodriguez totally deserved to be in the top 13. Ashthon is one of my favorites so I was glad she got in, especially after that incredible performance of the Jennifer Hudson song.

As a whole, the group of 13 finalists is probably the strongest group the show has ever had. Most of them have a legitimate shot at winning the whole thing. Song choice this season is going to be more important than it's ever been in the past. The only one I am not too terribly impressed with is Paul, the tall dude with the odd sounding voice. His version of Rod Stewart's Maggie May did nothing for me and his stumbling around like a drunk on stage was annoying.

I will preface this by saying I've always been a J-Lo fan. I really liked her new music video. She is one of the hottest looking 41 year old women I've seen. Nice abs too. drool
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YellowKing
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« Reply #28 on: March 07, 2011, 10:05:04 PM »

Wow, I'm the exact opposite. I thought the guys blew the girls away. My problem with the girls is that they are all cookie-cutter singers with no real personality. I honestly can't tell some of them apart. Even though the guys have a few more quirky artists, they're at least unique and not all doing the exact same act. The only ones I can even remember right now are the janitor girl that wore the flowers and Pia, the girl that went last. The rest are all one big meaningless blur of mediocrity.

I really like Paul MacDonald, but I'm a big fan of the 70s singer/songwriter vibe he seems to be going for. I'm also rooting for the country kid since he's from NC.

It all just goes to show, though, how good the new judges are. If we can disagree over who's better, and none of us can predict who's going to win, then they really did a great job. I would have bet money that this season of Idol would be the biggest trainwreck in the history of trainwrecks, and now I can't stop singing its praises.

My one caveat is that despite all the great talent, I'm skeptical that there is an artist of Kelly Clarkson/Carrie Underwood caliber here. Not just pure talent-wise, but "ability to sell records"-wise. I don't see anyone, with the possible exception of maybe Pia, who is going to have that wide appeal necessary to produce a star.
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rittchard
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« Reply #29 on: March 07, 2011, 11:38:10 PM »

Quote from: YellowKing on March 07, 2011, 10:05:04 PM

Wow, I'm the exact opposite. I thought the guys blew the girls away. My problem with the girls is that they are all cookie-cutter singers with no real personality. I honestly can't tell some of them apart. Even though the guys have a few more quirky artists, they're at least unique and not all doing the exact same act. The only ones I can even remember right now are the janitor girl that wore the flowers and Pia, the girl that went last. The rest are all one big meaningless blur of mediocrity.

My one caveat is that despite all the great talent, I'm skeptical that there is an artist of Kelly Clarkson/Carrie Underwood caliber here. Not just pure talent-wise, but "ability to sell records"-wise. I don't see anyone, with the possible exception of maybe Pia, who is going to have that wide appeal necessary to produce a star.

I'm with YK that I thought the guys (particularly the 2 I mentioned: Luther and Seth) were the major standouts in terms of artistry and vocal talent.  However I do think that the one they called a cross between Kelly and Carrie (Lauren?) could easily be molded into a hit machine of their caliber; I felt her raw singing voice was actually better than either Kelly or Carrie. 

As to who I think is going to win?  I honestly have no idea.  My personal favorites are likely to get knocked out early.  I love that little Thia girl and the Erykah Badu lady but I think they have 0% chance of winning.  On the guy's side, I love Seth and his "anti-Americal Idol look" campaign but I just don't think America is going to go with his shtick for the long haul.  Then again, they did vote Taylor Hicks in so anything is possible.  That Luther guy I would argue is the hands down best singer of this entire group, his vocal talent is just insane, but his presence is kind of creepy/weird and he seems to start crying at the drop of a dime, so that could be a turn off to voters.  Tough to say what America wants - if they want a new Kelly/Carrie, they can go with Lauren.  Interestingly they knocked out who I would have considered to be the most attractive of all the guys (Tim), so the tween girl fan block may not be as strong this year (or they all went for that Scotty guy).
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« Reply #30 on: March 08, 2011, 01:05:38 AM »

I gotta agree with ya YK. The field is SO strong this season, there is no clear cut favorite(s) and really most of them can win the competition. It's all going to come down to song choice. One bad choice can really be fatal this season.
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« Reply #31 on: March 08, 2011, 02:39:57 AM »

I really wanna see the rocker take it all. biggrin He's a showman, thats for damned sure. Who the fu** can take Judas Freakin' Priest and move the ball forward on American Idol?

I thought they should have kept the Columbian girl - I am glad the 17yr old kid (big nose) didn't make it in. He reminded me of that manservant from the Potter movies.. Dobbie? The Luther guy can sing, but he's got this creepy emo vibe that makes me think he gets off on clown suits and birthday cake.
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« Reply #32 on: March 10, 2011, 01:41:21 PM »

Wow, that was horrible. I was expecting some great stuff this week but was really let down by most of the singers. Horrible song choices pretty much all the way around. Pia rose above her song choice and did a decent job. But other than that I thought James Durbin had the only strong performanace and good song choice of the night. He has really improved a lot from his first audition (where I wrote him off as a sympathy case).
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« Reply #33 on: March 10, 2011, 05:51:18 PM »

Unfortunately, some of the singers were screwed by the terrible song arrangements the producers they were working with forced on them. Thia in particular was really hosed. First half of her song was awesome. Second half was terrible. There was absolutely no need to switch to the crappy jazzy beat. Naima's version of Umbrella was also an overproduced mess.

James and Pia were clearly the best of the group.
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« Reply #34 on: March 10, 2011, 07:41:57 PM »

I actually enjoyed the Umbrella routine quite a bit - it's the first time I can remember on Idol someone doing some legitimate dancing while singing/rapping.  She was off on some of it, but Rihanna herself has had trouble when trying to sing/dance so I give her props for bringing some life into a routine instead of just standing there.

I thought James was great but I can't help wishing he would blurt something inappropriate out.  I know it's shallow and tacky of me, but it's not my fault they made such a big deal early on that he has Tourette's.

Two of my faves, Lauren and Seth, both seemed terribly nervous to me.  He did better than she did, but I was really surprised at what appeared to be nerves.  Then that one chick toward the end (who sang the Selena song) was absolutely horrible, that was probably one of the biggest shifts I've seen in a long time in terms of confidence.  Even Luther seemed nervous and I thought he kind of botched what should have been a sure thing.

I don't really care for Scotty or Paul, but they both seemed to do OK in their niche.

I love Thia, she's so adorable and her voice is so beautiful in an understated way.  But the arrangement was weird and I don't think she can compete with all these grandstanding screaming divas.

All in all this group is still the strongest Top 12/13 I've ever seen.  I may not like some of them, but I can certainly see how each person could have their own fanbase.
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« Reply #35 on: March 11, 2011, 01:19:10 AM »

Tourettes isn't about shouting obscenities - that's what they have the marines for.

It's having a "tick" - for him, you can see his blinking as one of them. If someone holds back the ticks, it will build up into a giant outburst. A good friend of mine has mild tourettes- he's constantly moving his fingers.
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« Reply #36 on: March 11, 2011, 07:38:18 PM »

Quote from: Purge on March 11, 2011, 01:19:10 AM

Tourettes isn't about shouting obscenities - that's what they have the marines for.

It's having a "tick" - for him, you can see his blinking as one of them. If someone holds back the ticks, it will build up into a giant outburst. A good friend of mine has mild tourettes- he's constantly moving his fingers.

I used to have a blinking issue, maybe 20-25 years ago or so, I don't remember.  It lasted a long time.  In fact just mentioning it will make me blink as I'm doing now.  It was clearly an anxiety kind of thing though as it faded away eventually.  If I start to thinkabout it I'll start doing it again, ack.  Does that mean I have it too?  I was under the impression it wasn't something that just went away...

Edit:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tourette_syndrome  (guess I learned something new today!)

Anyway, back to the show.  I felt bad for Ashton or whatever her name was, but someone's got to go.  You could tell there was no way she was going to get a save.  Why did she sing the same song to save herself that the judges already said they didn't like?  Oh well.  Also I'm surprised Casey was allowed to not be there the whole episode, didn't someone say earlier he would be eliminated if he couldn't show up?
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« Reply #37 on: March 11, 2011, 09:03:28 PM »

Casey spent some time in the hospital during the days used for rehearsal leading up to the performances a couple of weeks ago. If he couldn't sing on the day of the performance he would have been in danger of being dropped. Hopefully he gets out of the hospital now and a gets back to rehearsing for next week.

Not surprised that Ashthon (Baby Beyonce) got eliminated. Her song choice and performance were very disappointing. Too bad. She really stood out during the Hollywood round and the Vegas round. There was no way the judges were going to use the save on her. Way, way too early and there are several other singers that the judges clearly favor more than Ashthon. The bottom three didn't surprise me either. The Selena wannabe is really lucky she wasn't the one eliminated.
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« Reply #38 on: March 13, 2011, 02:34:20 PM »

Three girls in the bottom 3 - I rest my case.  icon_biggrin
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DarkEL
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« Reply #39 on: March 13, 2011, 04:19:28 PM »

Quote from: YellowKing on March 13, 2011, 02:34:20 PM

Three girls in the bottom 3 - I rest my case.  icon_biggrin

Two of which were the judges wildcard saves.

Guys will start dropping like flies after they're gone.

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