9:00 p.m. Welcome to Wednesday (April 14) night’s “American Idol,” which should have been sponsored by Kentucky Fried Chicken, because it’s a Double-Down “Idol.” Mmmm… The chicken *is* the bun… Sorry. Little hungry. Anyway, two singers are going home tonight, putting the pressure on nearly everybody. Well, everybody except for Ryan Seacrest, who hits the stage with this season’s trademark smuggness.
Full recap of Wednesday’s show (with results) after the break…
9:02 p.m. Apparently 32 (or 33?) million votes were cast last night. I’m fairly sure that wouldn’t be an impressive total in any other season, but Ryan hasn’t mentioned vote totals since the Semifinals, so I guess the producers felt this was worth crowing about.
9:03 p.m. The Top 9 subjects the audience to medley of poorly lip-synched Elvis classics. I still don’t know how much auto-tuning you have to do to make Crystal Bowersox and Siobhan Magnus sound exactly the same.
9:04 p.m. That is *not* Tim Urban’s voice. Be serious, “Idol.”
9:06 p.m. It’s a good thing Elvis isn’t really dead, because if he were, this “Idol” medley would have him rolling over in his grave.
9:10 p.m. Seacrest promises a dramatic night. But first? A commercial for Ford set to a little Polyphonic Spree. It’s green. Yawn.
9:12 p.m. Results time. Or at least the start of the results. Casey James stands first. Then Aaron Kelly. Then Andrew Garcia. They’re brought to the center of the stage. If one member of the group is in the Bottom Three, it ought to be Andrew.
9:13 p.m. Andrew calls it a little stressful. Abruptly, after a brief interview, Ryan sends Andrew home. No “Bottom Three” nonsense. Just straight-to-execution.
9:14 p.m. Andrew gets one last chance to sing, albeit without any real incentive. He does a lackluster version of “You Give Me Something.” I kinda wish he could have brought his guitar out to do one last version of “Straight Up,” so that Simon could tell him that if only he’d done that exact same performance every single week, he’d have stayed around forever. And then Andrew could have told the judges to screw off and he could have left with dignity.
9:21 p.m. Only one week until “Idol Gives Back.” Woot!
9:22 p.m. Off to Africa with Elliott Yamin and Kara Dioguardi. They’re checking out the progress made as a result of “Idol Gives Back.” Y’all know me. I make fun of just about everything involving “American Idol,” but I don’t make fun of the good work done by “Idol Gives Back.”
9:25 p.m. America’s Nanny Is Back! Brooke White, who I like to think of as a Poor Man’s Didi Benami. Brooke is performing with Justin Gaston, who may be the cheesiest man alive. Is he meant as a joke? Is “Justin Gaston” a character being played by some snarky (dreamy) Internet sketch comic?
9:30 p.m. Brooke and Justin’s song is available for free on iTunes. The price is right, y’all!
9:34 p.m. “We’re laying down a double elimination,” Ryan says, practically begging for that KFC endorsement.
9:35 p.m. The entire bottom row comes to the middle of the stage. That includes Lee Dewyze, who says he feels like he’s playing a show now. He insists he’s having more fun and being more comfortable, not that you could see that comfort in his current demeanor. It also includes Siobhan and Katie Stevens. Katie has to know that Aaron Kelly’s safety means she’s pretty much doomed, but she keeps a big smile and insists that she’s growing each week and growing from this experience.
9:36 p.m. The bottom row also includes Michael Lynche, who deserved the Save last week and deserves to stick around after his Tuesday cover of “In the Ghetto.” Crystal Bowersox isn’t going anywhere, silly. And then there’s Tim Urban, squeal-inducing Tim Urban.
9:38 p.m. What do we do with all of these people? Crystal is safe. Siobhan is safe. [Katie is 100 percent going home now.] Lee is safe.
9:39 p.m. That leaves Tim, Michael and Katie in jeopardy.
9:43 p.m. Next week is Inspirational Songs week. Ick. With Alicia Keys mentoring. Yay!
9:44 p.m. There is a vortex opening up over Adam Lambert’s head. He’s singing “What Do You Want From Me?” and my current answer is “less smoke, more exciting lasers.” It’s an an admirably wail-y performance and an entertaining performance. He’s ludicrously better than anybody on the show this season. Oh well.
9:54 p.m. Time to send somebody back to safety.
9:55 p.m. It’s Tim Urban. Safe again.
9:55 p.m. Ah. It’s a twist. One person is going home and the other person wasn’t even in the Bottom Three.
9:55 p.m. Katie Stevens is going home, meaning that Big Mike wasn’t in the Bottom Three, which makes sense, because he kinda didn’t deserve to be.
9:56 p.m. This probably was just Katie’s time to go. She had a fine run and, best of all, she never made me dislike her. She was goofy and affable and not at all a bad singer. She just hit her ceiling. Her version of “Let It Be” is… not very good. She was far better on the same song last week, but given the emotion, who can blame her?
9:58 p.m. If I were Nikki Finke, I’d be all “TOLDJA!” on this week’s eliminations. But there wouldn’t be much point in that. Both Andrew and Katie were pretty much due, especially given Teflon Turban’s increased lack of suckitude. If Katie or Andrew had been voted off last week, the judges would still have the Save. But America is wacky and unpredictable.
10 p.m. My heart is already falling at the prospect of Inspirational Songs next week.
What’d you think of this week’s results? Tough to quibble with, right?