Salt Lake City, home of David Archuleta and the clean-cut enemies of equal rights. And, I'm sure, a ton of super-nice folks. The crowds are full of that eerie Utah sameness; the music over the crowd montage is "Shiny Happy People," a song that has always made me very sad for reasons I don't really understand, just like "What A Wonderful World." Randy's in a cool black-on-grey Superman t-shirt, still pretending to wonder where they are like he does every time; Paula's excited because this is where the dancers and singers came from for the High School Musicals. I certainly don't know if she's right, I doubt she does either, but what a wonderful world it is, if that's true. ["I'm not sure if she's right, but they sure did film the movie there... so she's at least got some partial correct information for a change." -- Angel]
An Osmond is up first. You can tell by the teeth and the fact that there are seven billion of them. There's archival footage of them being creepy for the last forty years, but you know what? What's important is that they are creepy as a family. The Osmond In Question talks about how his dad has MS, and then the dad cries about something. Oh, the Osmond In Question also has MS, and has been in wheelchairs on and off forever. He could likely be in a wheelchair again very soon, he explains, which is totally freaky, but makes him also the only Osmond I will ever have time for. You know I'm not one to get sentimental about misfortunes, because they earn you nothing except the right to be a victim should you choose to do so, but man MS is the worst. Most diseases that make people cry make me roll my eyes, but MS is a motherfucker.
Should I be cursing here in Salt Lake? Let's see how I do. Meet David Osmond (28, Provo), who will be singing a song by a band I don't think I've ever heard of, Take Six, and will probably be vaguely inspirational in the Archuleta fashion. I don't care to parse the lyrics because I think I'm right, but also because he has an awesome, awesome voice. In addition to being the kindest people on this entire planet, Mormons are also born with the ability to sing like angels. Go check it out. You won't recognize the songs, but they will sound insanely good. You might cry.
Paula instructs him to think of himself as one little angel instead of a choirmember, and not to pick songs by giant groups. Simon agrees, and tells him not to go contemporary. The music gets all sad and this thousand family members shiver outside, but I'm so sure. This show kills me sometimes. They give you all this suspense, and then obviously he's going to Hollywood. Back in the judges' room, Kara is all, "So genuine!" Seems like a treat now, yes. Wait until Day Two, when you're choking on it and all you want is some of that Ryan Talking To Speidi energy, just to give you a break. Notwithstanding Randy's diabetes, authenticity is really hard to live up to. On the other hand, Utah is close to all kinds of horrible places, so maybe some real jerks will show up to counteract it all. Or maybe I'm the jerk, because just now I had to visit the internet because I couldn't remember if Randy was actually diabetic or I was just making up racist bullcorn. Turns out: both.