AMERICAN IDOL: Drama and desperation escalate behind the scenes as the pressure mounts during the intense “Hollywood Rounds” which kick off with the guys, competing on Wednesday, Feb. 6 (8:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) and Thursday, Feb. 7 (8:00-9:00 PM ET/PT). The girls get their chance to win over the judges beginning Wednesday, Feb. 13 (8:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) ©2013 Fox Broadcasting Co. CR: Michael Becker / FOX.

Here’s what critics around the interwebs are saying about last night’s American Idol 12 Hollywood Rounds Pt 1  Read my recap here.

‘American Idol’ recap: Hollywood Unbound – Ooooh, boy. What a tepid wreck! Idol must really not want us to give a crap about any of the season 12 guys, based on the Hollywood Round footage we saw tonight. A few people did well, but no incredible standouts emerged as “shocking eliminations shook us to the core” and “dreams were laid to waste.” In fact, the best part of the night by far was Mariah Carey and her candor — both facial and bodily, mind you. – Read more at Entertainment Weekly

American Idol Recap: Test(osterone) of Wills – In the spirit of National Beyoncé Week — brought to you by the National Football League, the United States Congress, the Internet and the House of Dereon — I begin this American Idol recap with the bastardization of a famous lyric from the Artist Occasionally Known as Sasha Fierce: “To the left, to the left. All the lady Idols in the holding pen to the left.” Yes, folks, I’m still trying to sort out my feelings about one of the biggest changes to the show’s structure since my early days of recapping Fox’s reality behemoth — back when I identified with #TeamBo over #TeamCarrie. (Oh hindsight, you’re the cruelest mistress of all. Still, I bet even you have “Witness” on your iPod.) – Read more at TV Line

‘American Idol’ Recap: Handicapped Hopefuls Shine on Round 1 of Hollywood Week – With weeks of auditions now in the rearview mirror, the time has come for American Idol’s season 12 to dive into the always dramatic Hollywood Week. What of those contestants that audiences have been cheering for the last month? Some familiar hopefuls who got scads of face time — like ginger soul singer Karl Skinner — were quickly eliminated in the first ten minutes, as were many, many other Golden Ticket recipients deemed not compelling enough to make it through an edit. – Read more at Hollywood Reporter

‘American Idol’ Group Night: More Than Words? – Ever watch “American Idol” Hollywood Week and think, “What group night needs is more drama”? Well, you’re in luck. This year, instead of letting contestants choose their own groups, executive producers Nigel Lythgoe and Ken Warwick announced that groups had been chosen for them. The twist resulted in a few hot-mess squads, including Country Queen, made up of two country singers and two glam rockers, and Super 55, who complained about Cuban native Lazaro Arbos’ limited communication, thanks to a severe stutter and not knowing much American music. But the prefab groups also created some happy accidents, like Charlie Askew being placed with two gospel-trained singers for a come-to-Jesus performance of Bruno Mars’ “The Lazy Song.” – MTV

‘American Idol’ Goes To Hollywood: Boys’ Town – Hollywood Week kicked off this Wednesday on “American Idol.” (Well, technically the contestants were shipped to Northridge, a quiet San Fernando Valley suburb…but I guess “Northridge Week” just didn’t have as nice a ring to it.) This meant, of course, that the focus shifted from the fussing and feuding between the judges, and back to the usual drama between the contestants. However, while this week’s inter-contestant Hollywood Week tension was typical of any “Idol” season, there was a twist this year: This was the week that didn’t just figuratively separate the men from the boys, but also literally separated the girls from the boys, with the show’s male and female contestants sequestered in different groups–thus taking the series’ gender-quota rules to an entirely new extreme. – Read more at Yahoo.com

‘American Idol,’ ‘Hollywood Round, Part 1?: TV Recap – It’s Hollywood week! It’s the boys tonight. We see some of them being woken up by parents to go to Hollywood to go for their dreams. We’ll get Sudden Death and then Group Round. Some fun lyrical mess-ups add levity, otherwise it’s just a long elimination. Australian judge Keith Urban compares the show to “The Hunger Games,” apparently missing the irony that “The Hunger Games” was inspired by competitive reality shows. – Read more at The Wall Street Journal

‘American Idol’ Hollywood Round, Part 1: The recap – American Idol ‘s Hollywood Round moves at a frenetic pace, with new singers introduced and audition favorites eliminated so quickly, it’s almost impossible to keep up with who’s in and who’s out. Still, Wednesday’s episode saw some new favorites emerge, while other, more familiar faces saw their momentum shift. For the first time, Idol producers separated the men and women in Hollywood. But that wasn’t Wednesday’s only twist: The producers also chose the groups, putting some in almost untenable situations and others in combinations strong enough that they have the potential to continue beyond the show. – Read more at USA Today

‘American Idol’ recap: Hollywood Week — for boys only – It’s Hollywood Week on “American Idol.” That usually means we’re in for some drama and tension, especially during the dreaded group round – scenes of stressed-out contestants strolling around looking for kindred spirits, flashes of anger, exhaustion, frustration, desperation, tears. Last year, we got sickness and swooning, ambulances, a deep-voiced cowboy amusingly facing off with a smart-mouthed urbanite, our first twang of concern about eventual winner Phillip Phillips’ kidney-stone troubles. – Read more at LA Times