Welcome to “American Idol” Thursday, also known as “That thing you can watch the last five minutes of after surfing through the four NCAA Tournament Games currently on TV.”
After Wednesday night’s show, I’m curious who America will have rejected, but I’m also curious about what’s happening in the NCAA Tournament games, so click through and witness the glories of my split attention span!
8:00 p.m. ET. We’re starting with a “Godfather”-esque Jimmy Iovine introduction. It”s weird. And pointless. But it does feature Janelle Arthur, the singer I’ve decided isn’t going home tonight. So there’s that!
8:02 p.m. That is a very, very pink dress that Nicki Minaj is wearing.
8:02 p.m. “We could be in store for a surprise,” Ryan says. Hmmm… This concerns me a little.
8:04 p.m. We’re getting NeYo with Jessica Sanchez tonight, as well as a performance from Casey Abrams.
8:03 p.m. Jimmy found last night confusing, particularly the highly complimentary judges. “Critique as good as long as it’s consistent. What you can’t do is coddle people,” Jimmy says. Now Kree? Jimmy likes her and he’s fine with the judges coddling her, though he says she “tends to oversing at times.” Jimmy enjoys Burnell’s tone and calls it a great recovery from not knowing the song. He also says people should know the Beatles. Will he call Mariah out for her Beatles ignorance? He calls Lazaro “easily the worst performance of the night,” which is a no-brainer. He calls it “out-of-tune and out-of-rhythm,” which is also correct. Jimmy also THROWS LAZARO UNDER THE BUS, saying that he’d worked with Lazaro on the song five days earlier. Nice, Jimmy. He thought Amber did a wonderful job with her song, saying she’s in the Top 3. Jimmy does not, however, criticize Mariah for not knowing “She’s Leaving Home.” Jimmy says Candice gave the best performance of the night. So far, I’m not sure where he’s differing from the judges. “Paul has a really good voice, but for me, he’s not ready for primetime,” Jimmy says of Mr. Jolley, who he predicts for the Bottom Three. Jimmy criticizes Angie for over-dramatizing “Yesterday.” He’s right about what I called Cosette sings The Beatles. Jimmy thinks Devin has a great ear, but he thought Devin was middle-of-the-pack. And, finally, Jimmy thinks it was “a great song choice” by Janelle, who he calls his dark horse. Hmmm… So Jimmy said almost exactly what the judges said about nearly ever performer last night.
8:11 p.m. Results! Amber Holcomb is up first, preceded with rehearsal footage of of the singer trying to make it down the fog-shrouded steps. This is terrific. Can we get rehearsal bloopers for everybody? Watching Amber giggle through the fog is wonderfully endearing. America voted — no vote count tonight — and… no results.
8:14 p.m. South Dakota State and Michigan looks like a good game to watch during the commercial break. Go Jackrabbits!
8:16 p.m. EW. Beatles-Desecrating Group Lip Synch. The arrangement with the cheesy brass ensemble astoundingly bad. This is definitely NCAA Tournament Time. Because you can’t expect me to believe that that was Lazaro singing live? Yeah. Not a chance.
8:18 p.m. And that was only the guys. Ugh. Paul has to remain at center stage. He is told that last Saturday was Paul Jolley Day in his hometown. That’s the good news. The bad news is that Paul is in the Bottom Three. As well he should be. Off to the Stools of Shame for Paul.
8:22 p.m. Casey Abrams time! I’m disappointed he didn’t bring Haley Reinhart with him. But he did bring his standing bass. And his Chester A. Arthur mustache. This is much better than anything the “Idol” Men did last night. It’s hilarious that Casey Abrams was something that happened on “American Idol.” He’s so very talented and so very strange in this context. I have no idea what he’s doing here tonight, but that was a fine way to spend three minutes.
8:30 p.m. The Girls’ Group Lip-Synch is at least a bit less over-the-top than the earlier one. This is just five young women who can sing sitting on stools singing a Beatles song. That’s not so bad. Whether it’s live or not, these five are much better at singing together than any of the groups fabricated on “X Factor.”
8:31 p.m. Back to Results. Devin Velez had a rough day yesterday and he’s proud of how he did. He’s also in the Bottom Three. That’s OK if Lazaro Arbos is there as well. It’s his turn now. He says the judges were right for the most part with their criticisms. Nicki tells him he needs to be passionate about what he’s singing. And guess what? America voted and Lazaro is safe. Ugh. Come on, America. Not even Bottom Three? Really?
8:36 p.m. OK. This is concerning me a little. Plus, it’s time for me to switch to a different basketball game. Cal-UNLV, anybody?
8:38 p.m. Has Jessica Sanchez’s life REALLY done a 180? She’s been singing and modeling and she’s gonna be on “Glee.” And she’s huge in the Philippines.
8:40 p.m. Singing “Tonight,” it’s Jessica Sanchez and NeYo. This is… not a good song. Or… it’s not a song for me. How about that?
8:48 p.m. Lazaro is the ONLY person safe so far. Ponder that.
8:48 p.m. The next person to safety is… Kree Harrison. Also safe is… Candice Glover. The next person to safety is… Angie Miller. Janelle Arthur is safe, so I don’t have to change my picture with this recap. That means either Amber or Burnell is in the Bottom Three.
8:50 p.m. Burnell Taylor is safe. That puts Amber in the Bottom Three. You may recall I semi-predicted that.
8:51 p.m. “I’m really shocked that Amber’s in the Bottom Three,” Randy says. I’m not! But I hope that’s the shock Ryan was referring to earlier and that Paul goes home now…
8:54 p.m. Nicki thinks it’s “common sense” that Amber shouldn’t be in the Bottom Three, but tells her that now she has to sell it every time.
8:55 p.m. The person singing for the Save is… PAUL JOLLEY.
8:56 p.m. Ha. Paul’s gonna sing for the Save. Tee-hee.
8:57 p.m. Randy and Keith are talking about dinner plans.
8:58 p.m. Nicki is contemplating traffic on her drive home.
8:58 p.m. “Unfortunately, Ryan, it’s not unanimous, no,” Randy says. That’s a total lie. Of course it was unanimous. In any case, farewell to Paul Jolley. He probably should have gone home next week, but if America wants to insist on loving Lazaro, that’s how this goes…
Are you OK with America’s choice?