American Idol
Another One Bites The Dust

Episode Report Card
Shack: C+ | Grade It Now!
Don't even think of calling them "fat-bottomed girls"

Tuesday. Ryan tells us there are five contestants left and we get to vote on them. Also, the sky is blue, and two plus two equals four.

Credits. Ryan "Innuendo" Seacrest heads out to the Seal in a black outfit with the velveteen jacket. I just want to throw those Velcro balls from those "dartboard" games you buy for children so they don't try throwing actual darts at him. Ryan insists that there wasn't a dry eye in the house last week when John Stevens was finally eliminated. Well, I don't think I was laughing that hard. I'm not entirely evil. The same can't be said for the show's producers, who waited until he was gone for good before bringing in the big band theme.

Ryan introduces the judges, insulting Simon "It's a Hard Life" Cowell by saying he has a big head (see, because it's big band night). Paula "I'm Going Slightly Mad" Abdul appears to have dipped her face in Krispy Kreme glaze, perhaps to keep her overdone make-up from rubbing off. Also, it looks like she might be covering up a bruise on her right cheek, perhaps as a result of the universe trying to slap some sense into her. She's wearing a giant white silk flower/bow combo in her hair (mood: [insert Daffy Duck laughter here]). Randy "Radio Ga Ga" Jackson still loves himself a lot more than everybody else does.

A clip show about big band and swing music reminds us that silly dancing has been around for quite a while, long before that Wade Robson guy showed up. A lot of grainy black and white clips get some much needed airing. Duke Ellington! Tommy Dorsey! Benny Goodman! Then the cult of personality took over music (a turn from which we've never recovered), and the singers became more famous than the folks responsible for the music. Frank Sinatra! Dean Martin! Tony Bennett! They sang songs that are still loved nostalgically by the old and ironically by the young.

Once again, we'll be blowing through the pointless [product-placed cola] interviews before the performances. Ryan asks stupid questions to the kids in Pimp Central with the help of the monitor. He asks Fantasia how the performances are going to work tonight. She explains that they'll be singing two songs tonight, one that means a lot to them, and one they get to have fun with. What's the deal with Ryan making Fantasia do his job? Lazy-ass monkey boy. She says she thought big band would be tough for her, but says John sat her down and "gave her the ropes." So she managed to work in yet another shout-out to an ejected contestant. Does Diana think it's going to be tough? She says it will be challenging because she, unlike John, isn't all that aware of this type of music. A tiny little piece of Music's soul dies. Is George excited about the band? Yes. Yes he is! He's also excited about cats, Belgium, frittatas and the color green. And everything else, too. Speaking of the band, there is indeed a big one here tonight. Ryan has them play for a few seconds. Ah, a brief shining moment of competence before all the mediocrity.

Commercials. When we return, Ryan wastes little time (other than to remind us that we're voting for people) before introducing Diana "Under Pressure" Degarmo to sing "Someone to Watch Over Me." Will this someone she's longing to meet perhaps be Carson Kressley of Queer Eye for the Straight Guy? She may have to wait a little bit, because I think he had a stroke after seeing the dress Diana is wearing. Somebody took a shiny bluish-purple curtain from a convention center booth, added some white lace trim, and made a dress out of it. An ugly dress. In case we aren't clear. It's not just the color and type of fabric that's unflattering; it's also sleeveless and too short. I really want the person who created that dress to have to explain to the world what the hell he or she was thinking. Diana's rendition of the song fall less under the mood of "wistful" and more under "begging," or possibly "demanding." She's a bit too loud, and a bit too rough in parts. But she is getting a little bit better with the emotional connections. So maybe if we all keep treating her like crap, she will eventually become a great performer. And develop a severe drinking and drug abuse problem.

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American Idol




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