American Idol

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Through The Fire & Right Into The Frying Pan

Okay, Top Ten. I can name six. No, seven. So backstage everybody seems kind of prayers-y, and Andrew has his arm around Didi, and then Ryan makes the judges that actually matter make out. Jackson and Kara follow suit, mugging as usual for the camera. Of all the processes and products that I'd like to pull back the curtain on, this show ranks right above the human brain and right below sausage. Let's not do that again.

Out in the audience, everybody looks like David Cook or Jay Brannan. Fair amount of gravediggers out there tonight too. Ryan asks the whole audience to scream the name of the person they love most. I scream "Ryan!" Simon screams "Simon!" Somebody tragic screams "Clay Aiken!" Then they bring out the kids. I think maybe Aaron Kelly was the tragic person. Ryan climbs all over all of the Top Ten that aren't Didi, and then we learn about Usher. He sold records and won awards and sang a song where the only lyrics were "Yeah!" and then the one where he double-teamed a girl with R. Kelly, which...

Usher promises that he is going to be a really hardcore mentor and be tough on them, but then assures us he's just kidding. Then he tells the kids that he wants to make them cry, just kidding. Andrew says something really interesting, just kidding. Usher's being really meaningful and sincere about all this, just kidding. Katie's ebullient sense of humor is the emotional lynchpin of the group, just kidding. Then they take a photograph with him and Lee doesn't look like Brendan Fraser clapping at the Golden Globes, just kidding. Ryan and Usher hug and are totally comfortable with each other and their friendship, just kidding.

Ryan puts on sunglasses indoors so they can both look like assholes, and Usher says everything he already said twice, one more time. Eventually Ryan takes off the sunglasses, but not old Usher. Ryan asks if Usher taught Aaron Kelly the Usher Moves, and I don't really care about the answer so much as I sincerely hope that Aaron thinks he learned them.

You'll be thrilled to learn that Usher has an album coming out today. It is called Raymond Vs. Raymond, and it's totally interesting but I don't know if I can do the concept justice. I'll let Usher explain: "Raymond Vs. Raymond is my dichotomy you know one side and the other side of me you know for the most part the last two three years of my life went through a lot of different experiences pulled from some of my personal and also wanted to tell a few stories I think would definitely captivate an audience."

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American Idol

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