We remember when the top however many were just fireworks waiting to be lit aflame and forced into their little boxes and made to listen to Steven Tyler talking about God knows what, and it's all very nice to think about that time: Before Paul McDonald, before Lauren and Scotty proved to be so super creepy. Before Naima took it upon herself.
Casey hadn't had one single meltdown, physical or emotional, and just came in out of the dusky night like some kind of hoofed animal, Durbin was suckling babies at his teat, Jacob Lusk had only just begun the strangled, tense death-by-attrition breakup with humility. Now, of course, it's bombed and blasted out. J. Lo is wearing some kind of snakeskin romper and Steven Tyler is dressed like Ke$ha and Randy Jackson is still just Ranjo all over the place. But back then, it was nice.
THEME: SONGS FROM THE NAUGHTIES, BUT FIRST SADNESS
We remember then how there used to be girls on this show, including a couple I swear to God I've never seen in my life. Was Beyoncé a contestant on this show before? Was Thia Megia this year? The Judgery break into heaving tears at the sight of Pia, still having only figured out sleeves halfway. Much like P!nk the wr!ter of this song, they too believe they are rock stars, but we know better, don't we?
Paul McDonald doesn't even know the words of the song he's singing, of course, having so recently been born again on the stone tables of the doctorghouls; he never knew how to harmonize so this part isn't quite as sad as it might be, with Pia squatting all over everything and Naima forcing it, forcing it. This part is sad, like an infinity of Wendy Peppers forced to seamstress the work of infinite Kevin Johnns. Thia Megia and Pia drive around in a miniature Kia. They are forced one by one to rub Lusk's head with unguents and lotions and comb out the many silken scarves of Durbin's magnificent mane. By the end they are only husks.
Ryan: "Do you guys miss these little Aschenputtles?"
Tyler: "I'm happy they are back on the show! After the end of this season they send me back to the home! Let's start over with twelve again!"
Ryan: "Okay, but... Nevermind, TiK-ToK, we got about a hundred commercials to find time for -- including that awful, awful one where Zooey Deschanel goes vintage shopping and then rides a fixed-gear bicycle into an oncoming shark's mouth -- so let's talk theme."
SANGIN' & SWANGIN', OR: SMELLS LIKE TEEN MAROULIS