AMERICAN IDOL (2011) “Top 2 Perform” Review


AMERICAN IDOL (2011) Season 10 Episode 38 – I want to say I told you so, but most of you were in agreement with me anyway. But the thing is, I can’t put this “Top Two” performance day—the hands-down worst finale ever on American Idol—on just the contestants. Sure, Scotty McCreery and Lauren Alaina make for a pretty dull duo. And sure, we were saddled with six country & western songs packed within a one-hour time period.

And part of me is grateful they kept it to an hour. Because sure, it was figurative torture. But…

I’m not sure who FOX has their contracts with, or what could possibly trump American Idol. Is there a reason they moved the finale from Wednesday to Tuesday? Like what in FOX’s arsenal of hit shows can shove A.I. into the corner? Did they know their GLEE finale was so weak that they needed a lead-in?

Whatever the reason, this finale felt rushed. Really rushed. Ridiculously rushed. Seacrest was talking so fast I felt like buying cattle. The judges weren’t even allowed to speak until the end. (Though if that was a veiled announcement by FOX that their opinions didn’t really mean squat, well, I suppose I agree there.)

And what the BLEEP was Taio Cruz doing performing whatever stupid contest song (the “Perfect Harmony” project) they were promoting? Like that was important? Who the Hell is Taio Cruz? I had to Google his ass just to figure out how to spell his name. They couldn’t get a freaking A.I. winner (or even a contestant) to sing this freaking song?

I guess they couldn’t get Scotty or Lauren. Not exactly in their wheelhouse, so to speak.

So here’s how I scored the finale:

Lauren Alaina: 26
Song: Like My Mother Does
Performance: 4 Originality: 5 Stage Presence: 3 Appearance: 4 Marketability: 5 Intangibles: 5
Notes: How do you trump Scotty McCreery’s shoutout to grandmas? Why, you do it with a shoutout to moms, of course! This probably won Lauren the title, because even though most moms probably like Scotty, any that might have been on the fence will be tipped over to Alaina’s side. This wasn’t a bad song, or a badly sung song. It was decent. But how telling is it that Randy Jackson stood up and said, “FINALLY we get to see the Lauren Alaina we fell in love with”…? FINALLY, eh? My thoughts exactly, since she’s been underperforming since the very beginning. All promise, no delivery. I hope you enjoy the title FOX manufactured for you, Lauren. Good on you. Can’t wait to not hear you on stations I’ll never tune into.

Scotty McCreery: 24
Song: Gone
Performance: 4 Originality: 3 Stage Presence: 4 Appearance: 4 Marketability: 5 Intangibles: 4
Notes: Scotty’s strongest performance was a song he’d already done, though I think he improved on it only slightly. Pretty good song, full of energy, and yes, I can see it in a McCreery concert… that I will never attend.

Lauren Alaina: 23
Song: Flat On The Floor
Performance: 3 Originality: 3 Stage Presence: 3 Appearance: 4 Marketability: 5 Intangibles: 5
Notes: Her voice does sound raspier. Maybe she actually DID strain a vocal chord, rather than it being another stupid publicity stunt by FOX. Or not.

Scotty McCreery: 22
Song: Check Yes Or No
Performance: 3 Originality: 3 Stage Presence: 3 Appearance: 4 Marketability: 5 Intangibles: 4
Notes: Man, that fiddler guy with the greasy hair sure is being kept busy tonight.

Lauren Alaina: 21
Song: Maybe it was Memphis
Performance: 2 Originality: 2 Stage Presence: 3 Appearance: 4 Marketability: 5 Intangibles: 5
Notes: It sounded like she was catching up to the song, always a half step behind it. Carrie Underwood may have picked it, but Lauren could have done a better job learning the blasted thing.

Scotty McCreery: 19
Song: When I Love You This Big
Performance: 2 Originality: 4 Stage Presence: 3 Appearance: 2 Marketability: 4 Intangibles: 4
Notes: So let me get this straight: they put Scotty in a suit to sing his “hit single” song? If it wasn’t for how badly he performed this mindblowingly dull song, I would put all the onus on the pro-Lauren A.I. people. Then again that’s probably in the writing as well. There was no swell, no “hook,” no nothing. Bland.

Thank you for playing, Scotty. This… is Alainan Idol.

Follow me on Twitter! That’s @Axechucker, y–AAUUUGH I DON’T CARE! What a horrible finale.