After the ads, Steve says the voting lines will open shortly, but there's one more girl left to sing. Simon has a song from Cadillac Records for Rachel, promising a big shock. In her intro-reel, Rachel reveals that she was adopted at six months of age. She does stand out a bit. Simon admits that he hasn't done a good job with her so far, but after listening to her, he thinks he's come up with a "game-changer." And indeed, he's got her singing "I'd Rather Go Blind," which serves her a lot better than the Mousketeer crap he's been pushing on her this whole time. L.A. says she's come out as a contender with this one, and adds that it's his favorite yet. Nicole takes credit for Simon listening to her on the song choice, but Rachel interrupts and says she's the one who picked it this week. Simon nods proudly. "And that would explain it," Nicole says, complimenting Rachel on her level of soul. Paula adds that she's glad Rachel's teaching Simon humility. Simon claims that he's willing to admit when he's wrong, especially when working with an artist he trusts, like Rachel. He compares her to a "mini-Beyonce" and tells her she's back in the game. Steve comes out and chats with her a bit before giggling, "I want to eat her up!" before going into the voting instructions and throwing it to a montage of tonight's top-eleven performances. After that, all of the finalists are out onstage with Steve as he opens the voting lines. It's a lot less crowded up there sans InTENsity, one can't help noticing. Simon shamelessly milks votes by saying his mom's not feeling well, Steve lets Paula babble for a second before urging everyone to vote, because someone will be going home tomorrow night. Can it be Simon?
M. Giant is a Minneapolis-based writer with a wife, a son, and a number of cats that seems to have settled at around two. Learn waaaay too much about him at Velcrometer, follow him on Twitter, or just e-mail him at m.giant[at]gmail.com.