So, you’re stuck at work — or your significant other has monopolized the TV — and you are dying to know what’s happening on American Idol’s finale tonight. Never fear. Yes, while you do need a life, I don’t have one, either. Ergo, I’ll be live-blogging the final show. That means plenty of updates to this entry, so keep refreshing your browser window and you won’t miss a thing.
First up, Ryan with yet another witty yet scripted exchange with Simon:
Ryan: “Simon, you already look bored.”
Simon: “That’s because I’m listening to you.”
Segue to a pagent-y performance from Jordin and Blake singing “I Saw Her Standing There,” complete with plenty of butt-grabbing, shoulder shrugging and feigned sultry glances. Oh, how I hate these contrived performances.
UPDATE: Gwen Stefani reappears on Idol, this time looking slightly more alive than last. But, seriously, how does the girl open her eyes under the weight of all that thick, black eyeliner and the double set of false eyelashes? Now, for a real age revealer — my age, as well as hers — I remember when Gwen was punk and swore she’d never go mainstream. Obviously, being a brunette does have its mental advantages, because she clearly forgot her very own words. Just as she forgot to look in the mirror before donning the dress that makes her look like one of those dolls whose fuzzy skirts are used to hide a roll of toilet paper in the homes of people with very bad taste. Interestingly, Gwen’s performance seemed cut-off midway… just like that hideous skirt.
UPDATE TWO: I’m eating a cold artichoke sans butter. Yum!
UPDATE THREE: Kelly Clarkson is back on Idol! Unlike last month’s mu-mu clad performance during “Idol Gives Back,” Kelly is looking slim and chic… and pissed. My, my. Has she been studying Melinda Doolittle for tips on how to look well and truly pissed? How odd to hear Kelly Clarkson sound as edgy and hard core as Gwen Stefani once did… despite giving up the carrot stick on peroxide look.
UPDATE FOUR: Great. The thunderstorm the weatherman said wasn’t going to happen is, in fact, happening. At least my TV is in the basement, right next to our tornado supplies.
UPDATE FIVE: Idol shares a montage of overweight folks who tried out for the show, which would be forgivable but for the camera focusing in on Margaret Fowler’s wobbling wobbly parts. Oh. My. Eyes. But, wait, it doesn’t stop there! Margaret is actually at the Idol finale — wearing the same Big Bird costume-like thing — and having been invited to the stage plants a big wet one on Ryan. I never thought I’d pity Ryan Seacrest before, but Dear Lord I do. Oh, and did I mention that they gave her the stage to read a “poem”? Nothing like s-t-r-e-t-c-h-i-n-g a 30 minute show to fit 2 hours. Then again, give the woman props: she said she’d make it to American Idol’s finale, and she was right.
UPDATE SIX: And now we are “treated” (and I use that word loosely) to an ensemble performance of “Oooh, Baby, Baby” and “Tears of a Clown” by the Top Six guys. Look, we voted all of them off. Why on earth inflict them on us yet AGAIN? Oh, wait, that’s why: so Smokey Robinson could come onstage looking like the Poster Boy for Botox and clarify just how off-key they actually were.
UPDATE SEVEN: Have I said lately how much I despise the way Paula claps with her fingers splayed back so that just her palms meet? Reminds me of when both of my kids learned, at the ripe ol’ age of 1, how to clap. I taught them not to look like dorks. Why didn’t Paula’s folks? And don’t get me started wondering how much cortisone and coke they’ve got shoved up her broken nose just to get her through tonight. Can you say “Small Fortune”? I knew you could.
UPDATE EIGHT: Ryan said something about folks complaining that Beat Box Boy didn’t get to Beat Box last night. So now they’ve brought on a Beat Boxer (Doug E. Fresh?) to Beat Box with him. Thank God for the Mute Button. I *heart* TiVo.
UPDATE NINE: Moving on from artichokes to carrot sticks. I blame Gwen Stefani.
UPDATE TEN: I think what I love more than watching the Idol finalists perform is watching their parents watch them.
UPDATE ELEVEN: The “Most Original Vocal Award.” And ‘original’ here is a bad, bad thing. Again, I’ve yet to understand the producer’s ‘logic’ of making the world endure the same crappy performances that the judges themselves found painful. So, because I care about your ears (and mine have already been assaulted beyond belief), the winner is Sholandric Stallworth. Who? Precisely.
UPDATE THE TWELFTH: I just typed it that way because I thought it made me sound smart.
UPDATE THIRTEEN: The Top 6 Girls are performing “(I Heard It Through) The Grapevine.” The only memorable thing, until Gladys Knight’s appearance? Gina’s hair was looking gooooood. But, look, once Gladys is on stage, there’s just no point in the rest of them being there. Maybe that’s why the producers wisely put the girls in the role of backup singers… which is where at least 5 of them deserve to be.
UPDATE FOURTEEN: Gladys Knight sings “Midnight Train To Georgia.” If nothing else remarkable happens on this show tonight, I’ll feel grateful for having heard this song. But, wait, there’s more! That’s right: Melinda Doolittle and LaKisha get to step up and sing with The Diva, and they do her — and themselves — proud. This is when I think American Idol truly gives back: what a grand, wonderful experience for those two women to sing with the woman who inspired them to sing. And, by the way, Gladys is still perfect after all these years.
UPDATE FIFTEEN: Oooh, look. There’s Paulie from “Rocky” looking over Ryan’s shoulder? Oh, wait a minute. No, it’s not. It’s Constantine Margolis. Who knew?
UPDATE SIXTEEN: Although Tony Bennett had a falling out with Simon earlier this season, the Maestro stands and delivers… and reminds us all why he is a true American Idol.
UPDATE SEVENTEEN: If you’re impressed with odd friendships and those who make fun of them, check someone else’s blog for feedback on this “award” category. Me? I’ve got to find a celery stick… preferably with a Bloody Mary wrapped around it.
UPDATE TO UPDATE SEVENTEEN: Remember the “bush baby” comment? The guy just won the “Best Buddy” award. But at least he has the guts to tell Simon — as he accepts his award on American Idol — that after doing the Super Bowl, the Oscar’s Red Carpet, AI’s Red Carpet, etc., that he wouldn’t be where he was if it weren’t for Simon. Oh, and American Idol sponsored a ‘bush baby’ at some zoo in the guy’s name… but they named it Simon.
UPDATE EIGHTEEN: Melinda Doolittle gets to perform with BeBe and CeCe Winans, for whom she used to sing backup. And for some reason, tonight is the night she decided to show more personality than my used tea bags. Go figure.
UPDATE NINETEEN: My, those Bloody Marys (Maries?) go fast. Unfortunately, the commercial breaks do not.
UPDATE TWENTY: Oh, did I fast-forward through a Ford ad? Oh, my. So I did. Pity I can’t fast forward through Carrie Underwood’s destruction of a beautiful song by The Pretenders. At least I still have my Mute Button. Not that it helps blind me to the fact that Carrie’s head is beginning to resemble a light bulb, or that with enough chemical peels anyone can, apparently, resemble a fetus.
UPDATE TWENTY-ONE: Zzzzzzzzzzzzzz. Is Carrie done yet? No? Zzzzzzzzzzzzzz.
UPDATE TWENTY-TWO: Clive Davis has to be helped on stage by some PYT. (If you aren’t old enough to know, don’t ask.) The amazing thing is that Clive Davis did not need a respirator throughout the entire six, perhaps seven paragraphs he read off the teleprompter. Blah, blah, blah, Daughtry. Blah, blah, blah Jennifer Hudson. Blah, blah, blah, Fantasia. Blah. Blah. Blah. Dear God, someone pull this man’s life support plug so he’ll shut up. Oh, wait… now we have to hear more from Carrie Underwood. Yeah, sounds like the perfect time for a smoke break.
UPDATE TWENTY-THREE: The African Children’s Choir performs… and yet I can’t help thinking that the show would have better spent the money on feeding kids in Africa, instead of flying and housing a well-paid choir to perform onstage. But that’s the Republican in me: we like it when money gets used for practical, honest purposes rather than making token gestures contrived to show what “good” we do.
UPDATE TWENTY-FOUR: Repent, because the end is near! Sanjaya and Joe Perry take the stage. The end times are nigh. (Hint: in case you’re tone deaf, you can tell by Joe Perry’s hair-tossing each and every time Sanjaya misses the note.) Oh, and they brought back the crying girl.
UPDATE TWENTY-FIVE: Greenday. At last, a reason for my ears to have endured everything since Gladys.
UPDATE TWENTY-FOUR: Taylor who? Yeah, Ryan didn’t even bother introducing him… and it’s not because he doesn’t need an introduction. After all, this is quite a big change from the stages at casinos and county fairs he’s been playing since winning AI last year.
UPDATE TWENTY-FIVE: Jordin and Ruben Studdard take the stage to sing “You’re All I Need To Get By.” I’d heard Reuben had slimmed down. Just how big had he grown? Not that I care. He’s got a voice like chocolate… sweet, silky and satisfying… but a guilty pleasure for having enjoyed.
UPDATE TWENTY-SIX: Bette Midler performs “Wind Beneath Your Wings,” sounding just as tired of singing it as I am of hearing it. At last count, I’ve endured this song over 732 times. I’ve done my penance, God. I’m stepping outside for another cigarette.
UPDATE TWENTY-SEVEN: WTF was I thinking, deciding to stick through and liveblog this whole show? Nobody — NOBODY — deserves this kind of misery. I want combat pay. I want damages for my pain and suffering. I want another Bloody Freakin’ Mary.
UPDATE TWENTY-EIGHT: American Idol clearly has something against The Beatles. First Kelly Clarkson does Sgt. Pepper’s, accompanied by Joe Perry. Then Taylor Hicks comes on to destroy John Lennon’s “Day in the Life.” But — in case the latter weren’t enough — Carrie Underwood performs an almost unrecognizable “She’s Leaving Home.” Ruben redeems it with a mostly decent performance of “Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds.” Then the Idol rejects all join in an ensemble performance of “With A Little Help From My Friends.” That inability to find a proper mentor so they could’ve done Beatles Week this season? Evidently, they still didn’t find one.
UPDATE TWENTY-NINE… The winner is…
Congratulations, girl. And, might I add what a truly class act Blake Lewis is?
[tags]American Idol, American-Idol, Melinda Doolittle, Blake Lewis, Jordin Sparks, Carrie Underwood[/tags]