First thing's first: the final 8 group sing is the most hilarious yet. "Bailamos"! It's everything you ever laughed at Enrique Iglesias for, multiplied by eight. "Te quiero, mi amor." Then, to help pad things out for the full hour, Ryan Seacrest performs man-on-the-street interviews, lending even more credence to the fact that SANJAYA IS FOR THE CHILDREN. Akon has apparently been camping out at the studio for two weeks because he's still there and singing that one song of his. Ryan offers us a preview of the untold amounts of filler we're in for during Idol Really Cares...Really week, which includes the triumphant return of "...Other Door," but it's not the same. Results? Oh THAT'S what we're here's for. Phil's bottom three, as is Haley. The last spot at the center of the stage comes down to Sanjaya or Chris, and after some tooling around and making Sanjaya even more the center of attention than he usually is, beautiful Chris is sent to join the other two. BOO! But then he's sent back! YAY! J-Lo then gets an outtake reel that shows her to be even prettier and cooler than I thought yesterday. You're all still sworn to secrecy about that. She then gives a performance that is essentially a halftime show in search of a game. Phil and Haley return for the boot, and without a whole lot of fanfare, it's Haley. Finally. Then she has to sing goddamn "Turn the Beat Around" and is unable to adjust the choreography so she ends up working the audience for no reason whatsoever. Lucky for all of us, she winds up in the middle of a Blake/Chris makeout session before the sign-off. Not a bad way to go, considering. Next week: I'm back, and I think it's country night. I'm saying it right now: Sanjaya sings "Save a Horse, Ride a Cowboy" or else none of this has been worth it.
Weirdly enough, none of the Top 8 look like they're going to hurl as Ryan walks the line past them with his usual "eight may enter, only seven shall leave" spiel. When he gets to the end of the line, Sanjaya's there, of course, and Ryan stares at him for an eternity after asking who will be leaving us tonight. Because the fact that it's so totally not going to be Sanjaya is a joke to everyone, as we'll see later on. We've got an hour of results tonight, which means filler out to here, but weirdly, it's one of the more entertaining hours Idol has produced during this odd, odd season.
In the first of several "That's right...we're American fucking Idol" displays tonight, Eva Longoria and Sharon Osbourne are both shown in the audience, neither of them captioned. They're just lucky to bathe in Idol's wake, you see. Ryan asks the crowd who their favorite is, and one eager Melinda fan gets to screaming before everyone else, though you do hear a good amount of "Blake!" in there as well. He promises us an "action-packed" show tonight, filled with updates on the songwriting competition (BAM!) and "Idol Gives Back" (POW!). He's right, it does sound action-packed. Ryan introduces the judges, and Simon pops a wink at Randy, just to switch things up. Ryan asks his newfound rival for Simon's fake affections about how he kept saying last night that these Latin songs don't require much in the way of "singing." Randy's like, "Yeah, as I said last night, these songs may appear easy to sing, but they're really hard." Which is the exact opposite of what he and the rest of the judges said last night, so we're off to a flying start in terms of bald-faced falsification. Then Ryan asks Paula something about "seeing another side to the contestants," and she starts giggling like crazy for some untold reason. Great, which one of the boys is she sexually harassing this season? I mean, beyond what we've already seen.
Before we get to the harsh eliminations buffered by an avalanche of filler, Ryan wants us to give it up for the Top 8 as they sing "Bailamos."
Sorry, I just sort of fell over. "Bailamos"! Awesome! Hilarious! Oh, this is going to be awful. In and of itself, "Bailamos" is hilarity personified, as are each and every one of Enrique Iglesias's songs. It's not as funny as the one where Mickey Rourke punches him to death while Jennifer Love Hewitt screams in silent terror, but not before she and Enrique do it atop a pile of dirty, sweaty money. That's the best. This one's up there, though. So the Top 8 take their positions onstage, spaced out with their backs to the audience. Whoever's turn it is to sing at a given moment turns around to face us, then turns right back again. Chris R starts us off, which I am given to understand means he's the Chosen One. Hey, just like last year when that other Chris was totally the Chosen One. He won, right? Not to mention, Chris R now joins Melinda, Blake, Jordin, LaKisha, Chris Sligh, Antonella, and Sundance as this season's Chosen Ones. Conspiracy! Back to "Bailamos": Melinda's brilliant, of course, but she hands it off to Haley and Sanjaya, who are apocalyptic enough individually. Together, they're truly unsettling. They all collectively have no rhythm whatsoever as they sing the chorus. Everyone you think should be great is indeed great. Jordin sounds a thousand percent better than she did last night. She should have chosen this song!
Blake and LaKisha are at center stage, and he spins her around as they sing. They're both the exact same height, which means they could both fit in the palm of your hand with room to spare. Next, they all line up and face the audience, but the camera is now behind them. The boys, one after the other, Chris-Phil-Blake-Sanjaya, each breaks off and sings a line, culminating in the grossest, funniest, most predictable thing of all time: Sanjaya getting all up in the camera and whispering, "Te quiero, mi amor!" The best thing is that if you've ever heard this song before, you know exactly what's going to happen by the time Phil sings his line. And yet we're all powerless to stop this runaway train made of skeeviness. Jordin takes over the glory notes at the end, while Melinda and Blake goof around, because they're part of the Cool Kids, and the Cool Kids rock. Best group sing ever!