For the first time in American Idol history, the show brought 10 contestants back from the previous season to perform for a spot in the Top 10 of the current season. The company line is that the pandemic cheated last year’s contestants out of the full American Idol experience, so they deserve another shot. However, I suspect it’s an extra gimmick to get people watching or talking.
But I’m not sure the Idol Powers That Be expected long time Idol watchers to HATE the idea so much. Although I enjoyed watching the performances tonight, I still do not love the idea. Sure, it’s unfair that the pandemic ruined the season 18 contestant’s experience. But it would also be unfair for a popular season 18 contestant, a singer who has had a year to build a fan base, to come swooping in and win the competition. And I mean just SNATCH it right from under the noses of the current crop. DANG.
What I liked about the Comeback: Seeing how the contestants grew or not over the course of 12 months. Aliana Jester did a major GLOW UP. She looked beautiful , and sang with a confidence I don’t remember her ever having. It was cool to see a taste of what Franklin Boone might have given us if he had made the big stage. Makayla Phillips and Olivia Ximenes also made it clear that they would have benefited from performing in front of an audience. A special without voting might have been good? But a show with no stakes doesn’t draw the eyeballs.
Anyway. The winner will be either season 18 runner-up Arthur Gunn or Top 7 finisher Louis Knight. Louis’s performance of an original song conformed what I expected. That he would have gone farther last year singing more original songs. In fact, during an interview last year, Louis confirmed that originals were off the table once the competition moved to singers’ homes.
Between Arthur and Louis, the latter performed like a hungry artist. He wants this second chance SO BAD. Arthur probably wants it as well, but his laid back demeanor hides any ambition he may have. However, Arthur has PEOPLE. If he takes the spot, I won’t be surprised.
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