American Idol Top 7 Redux – Wrap Up and Predictions

Bottom 3: Matt Giraud, Anoop Desai, Lil Rounds
Going Home: Lil and Anoop or Matt
Possible shocker:   Allison Iraheta could find herself in the bottom 3. Shock boot: She’s going home

Tonight is tough to predict.   Anoop Desai, Matt Giraud and Lil Rounds have been on the cusp of elimination for a few weeks now, all with at least a couple B3 appearances to their credit.   Likely, they will all end up in the bottom 3 tonight.

But who will go home?

Lil was practically handed her walking papers by Simon. But often, when the judges rip a contestant a new one like they did Lil last night, it triggers a wave of sympathy votes.   But, if Lil had burst into tears, rather than sassed the judges, if her parents didn’t look so pissy in the audience and if her brother hadn’t heckled the judges, I’d have more faith in the sympathy vote.

But I’m thinking, at this point, the audience has had it with Lil and her lack of self-awareness.   It’s a safe bet she’ll be leaving us tonight.   If she does, Season 8’s Top 5 will be the first without a female African American singer in the history of the show.

Anoop Desai could also make a little history. If he is eliminated, he’ll be the first contestant to leave despite having the pimp spot at this point in the competition.   The pimp spot may save him.   Really, I think it’s a toss up between Anoop and Matt Giraud tonight.   Cushioned by last week’s feel-good save and a decent performance, Matt may squeak by Anoop tonight.

I’m rooting for Anoop to stay over Matt. This week, Anoop’s performance was just about on par with Matt’s–meaning it wasn’t perfect but it wasn’t bad.   But last week, Matt deserved to be eliminated based on a terrible performance, while Anoop’s superior performance earned him another week.   Matt was saved to tweak the drama.   He served his purpose, so buh bye Matt, I say.

I wouldn’t rule out a shocker tonight.   Allison Iraheta finally has the love of the judges, but I’m not sure the audience has caught up.   Her re-working of a classic last night may not have been everyone’s cup of tea. Couple that with a 4th place performance position and it all could add up to an appearance in the B3 OR a Shocking! Shocking! boot.   That would suck so very much I hate to even bring it up. But there it is. Sigh.

Last night’s Disco theme wasn’t the big trainwreck it could have been.   Back in the days of backing tracks, the contestants were pretty much forced to adapt their style to the theme.   These days, it’s the other way around, with contestants such as Kris Allen working with Rickey and the band to retrofit a tune to fit his style exactly.   Even Adam Lambert, the Idol who seemed most likely to get his hustle on, re-arranged and ballad-ized a disco classic.

Kris Allen’s jazzy take on “She Works Hard for The Money” was refreshing, but also exactly what I expected from him. Unlike Adam, Kris isn’t dazzling viewers with unexpected turns every week. But, since he found his footing and confidence on the Idol stage, he’s been able to remain consistent and show the audience exactly who he is as an artist–a strategy that’s made of WIN on Idol. He’s got a very good chance to make the Top 3. The dude’s got “package artist” written all over him. Once Idol is done, I’ll be surprised if he isn’t signed.

At this point, the bar is set so high for Adam Lambert, that even his mostly wonderful performance of “If I Can’t Have You” disappointed me a bit.   Adam’s strategy, alternating uptempo songs with ballads, is becoming a bit predictable.   And I wasn’t loving the arrangement of his song.   The first half was lovely and moving, but I didn’t like the rock wail thrown in the middle, or the abrupt ending.   Adam needs to shift his game plan just a bit going forward to keep it fresh.

I might be in the minority, but I loved Allison Iraheta’s slowed up arrangement of “Hot Stuff.” It fit her vocal style perfectly. I think she ripped it up with the growls and wails–a great rock take on a disco classic. Loved her outfit too–it was like Joan Jett meets Donna Summer.

Matt Giraud and Anoop Desai both had solid performances last night.   But, they’re both so spooked, neither is comfortable on the Idol stage any more.   Anoop’s vocal for “Dim All The Lights” had some lovely moments, despite biffing the ending. And Matt’s ironic “Staying Alive” just seemed desperate and too eager to please. Both   performances sounded better than they looked.

Lil Rounds isn’t as good as she thinks she is.   And I blame the judges for egging on her caterwauling early on in the competition.   Last night’s performance of “I’m Every Woman” was better than her “gospelized” Bette Midler last week, but it was still dull as dirt. I am totally ready to have Lil Rounds off my TV screen.

Speaking of caterwauling.   Danny Gokey scared the crap out of me last night.   That first screachy “yeah!!!” was not pleasant. Neither were the flemmy “Bop Bop Bop!!!” Make it stop, Mommy! Not digging it. Except, inserting the snip of “I Can See Clearly Now” was a bit clever, I’ll give him that.

It’s obvious the producers are still struggling to manage the judges.   This week, they went back to the Randy first/Simon last format, and Randy and Simon looked pretty pissed when Kara forgot and spoke out of turn. I can’t even imagine how they’re gonna manage that panel next week when they have to critique 10 performances in 1 hour.

With the panel seemingly out of control, no matter what the producers try, I would not be surprised if come next year, that 4th judges’ spot was eliminated.

About mj santilli 34550 Articles
Founder and editor of, home of the awesomest fan community on the net. I love cheesy singing shows of all kinds, whether reality or scripted. I adore American Idol, but also love The Voice, Glee, X Factor and more!