Well, the angels will be singing two songs tonight. In an effort to keep up, I promise to make at least two jokes about each performance. However, I offer no guarantees that said jokes will be amusing. That's just asking too much. Ryan tells us the finale is so close that the contestants can taste it. I can only assume that, like everything else these days, the finale is chipotle-flavored. Although you can also get it buffalo popper-style with a choice of three dipping sauces.
Anthony Fedorov is all grown up! Sort of. Actually, not really. He's just brushing his hair forward now. One of the themes tonight is songs from the year you were born. In Elliott's case, that is 1978. In his piece, when Elliott explains that he bites his fingernails when nervous, the crowd cheers wildly. Um...okay. Maybe a busload of manicurists are in attendance and they're positive giddy at the prospect of buffing Elliott's cuticles. Buffing them...ON BROADWAY! Do you think this song is what Liza Minelli's alarm clock plays to wake her up? Here's another question. If the show is only four minutes old and Elliott's tie is already loosened, where's it going to be by the time his next song starts? Around his shins? I guess we'll find out. We'll also find out if Elliott improves, as the judges weren't all that impressed by his first song. Elliott Yamin "The Machine"? Gee, too bad we haven't been treated to that nickname all season.
You know, if the Flyers get eliminated tonight, that'll just about make my year. God, I hate them so much. Bobby Clarke knows less about putting a team together than the guy who finished last in your fantasy league. I'm surprised he didn't trade for toughness at the deadline like he does every other year. Anyway, back to Idol, where it's unlikely anybody will drop the gloves tonight. Hello, Paris Bennett. Hi, everyone! Prince and Robert Zimmerman are both from Minnesota. Of course, up there, Zimmerman is pronounced Dylan. For what it's worth, ladies, you do have to be beautiful to turn me on. It may be shallow thinking, but you can take that personality stuff and jam it. Well, this performance is certainly loaded with sass. Two spoonfuls worth! Randy just liked it. Paula wasn't crazy about it and Simon declared it to be screechy and annoying. Yowch.
Chris, liberally borrowing Bo Bice's aesthetic, is doing a song from 1979. No, not "1979" by the Smashing Corgans. The year 1979. Iron cross belt, eh? So independent! So renegade! Chris probably parked his motorcycle in the women's bathroom tonight simply because, hey, who's gonna tell him he can't? Randy loved it. Thinks they have a hot one tonight. Paula loved it and Simon thinks it blew away the first two performances. Which is maybe why it got the shortest paragraph. Sort of an inverse proportional thing, I guess.
Ryan really wants to make sure we know tonight is live. Elsewhere, it's 4-0, Buffalo. Gosh, I wonder if the Flyers will goon it up in the third period before their season ends. So everybody is aware they're, you know, tough and stuff. Katharine is up next, and after she sheepishly admits she lost a button from her dress last week, vows it won't happen this week. Which is why she's wearing seven belts around her dress. There is absolutely no chance that thing is going anywhere! And, um...all those belts might be cutting off her air supply, because it was a rough start to the song. And a sorta rough middle. And a somewhat bumpy close. Laughing, Randy says the high point of the song is when it got okay at the end. Only okay. Paula didn't really like it. Simon thinks it was like watching somebody fall down the stairs, although he didn't actually say it in those words. But there is some confusion over what he actually said, and he wants to clear it up. Ryan asks Simon if that's his final answer. Great! Thank you for the topical reference, kid! Maybe next you can encourage us to keep on truckin'.
Uh oh. Seizure Taylor is here! Taylor's dancing:rhythm is like Taylor's shirt:fashion. Look for that on your SATs next year, high school juniors. I mean, what is happening here? He's like somebody who loves cooking, but ends up burning everything. At some point you should just stop trying, you know? And now he's on the ground. Um, I'm just going to stop talking now. Randy can't even find words to describe it. Paula liked the authentic Taylorness of it. Simon thinks it was like your Uncle Rick acted up at your sister's wedding and starting doing the Electric Slide. While yelling Soul Patrol over and over and over and over and over. Yes. Soul Patrol. It rhymes. We got it. Enough already!
It's our second time through the batting order. This time, it's Billboard hits. Ah, geez. Who's picking Elliott's songs for him tonight? I...I dunno. Okay, so we won't have two jokes per performance. We all knew that benchmark wasn't happening anyways. Randy loved seeing Elliott's tender side. Does he even have a rough side? Paula loved the richness of his voice. Simon thinks it put Elliott right on the edge of trouble.
First it was Mary J. Blige, now it's Paris J. Bennett. And that makes me Lame J. Comment. Camoflauge, huh? Is that how it's going to be? And with the silvery pants, I can only assume this is some sort of futuristic outfit soldiers on the moon will wear when they start working on that giant laser we point at problem countries to make them sweat a little. Randy thinks Paris did a pretty good job. Paula liked it, but wanted some more originality. But Simon thought she did pretty well.
Has anybody else noticed that the second performance paragraphs are about half the length of the first ones? I suppose that's what a sugar crash looks like in print. Oh my God! Everybody run! The studio is on fire! Save the talent first, then yourselves! Don't get too close to Seacrest's hair! It'll explode! Wait, wait. Hang on. I think this is just digital fire. And Chris' rage is just artistic fire, although it did evidently singe his hair off during a performance one day. You know, just for the record, even though your 58-year old aunt might be nervous right now, this is not real rock. This is carefully packaged pop rock. Don't buy the manufactured, corporate-endorsed anger, man. Be like the judges, who didn't dig it much at all.
Now what do you call this? I guess Katharine spent a high school spring break in Tijuana and picked up a few things. I'm not saying anything else. Her father is in the audience, for gosh sake! The judges were kinda split on it and I'm simply moving on.
Seriously, does Taylor think what he's doing with his head there is cool? Interesting? Unique? I'll grant him unique, but you know what? Nell was unique, too. Oh! Taylor's shirt just reminded me! I hid a purple Easter egg behind the water heater. I'd better get that thing before it gets nasty down there. Wait a minute. Is this the first ever Beatles song on the show? Hmm. Thinking...thinking. I think it might be. Wow. Good move on Taylor's part, because there's no such thing as a bad Beatles song. The Liverpool stuff, the Maharishi stuff, all fantastic. Randy liked the tender moment and so did Paula. Simon thanks Taylor for finally cutting out all the histrionics and reminding us that he's actually quite a good singer. Taylor responds with two "Whoos!" and a head shake. In other words, some more histrionics.
Hey, just so you know, Chino loves Chris.