Top 20 – Elimination

Eliminated tonight (click the link for video)

thanks rockers94 for the video!

Click the jump for my recap…

Did anybody else see Alaina Whitaker’s elimination coming? I didn’t. I found the teenager both talented and charming, and she seemed to “pop” off the TV screen in a way that her fellow-bottom dweller, Kady Malloy did not. By the way, only Kady had her standings (she was part of the Bottom 3) revealed by Ryan Seacrest when she was declared safe. I wonder why? /Tinfoil hat.

Alaina must have been shocked, considering that Simon Cowell anointed her the Dark Horse contestant in his critique on Tuesday. After Ryan eliminates her, she declares, “I can’t sing!” At that moment, she seems to be every bit the 17 year old girl she is. It’s too bad she didn’t wait a few years to try out. With a little more maturity, she could have been a force to be reckoned with.

The other female bootee, Alexandrea Lushington, wasn’t a surprise. But, her elimination was a disappointment, nonetheless. She could have brought an interesting vibe to the Top 12 if given the chance. I suspect she would have been one of those contestants who changed it up from week to week. As somebody mentioned in comments, Alex competed against David Archuleta on Star Search (David beat her). Alex’s elimination brought David to tears, prompting Alex to dash straight over to the boys couch to give him a big hug.

Robbie Carrico’s elimination wasn’t a surprise, either. I wouldn’t call his problem a lack of authenticity exactly. Robbie reminds me of a kid playing dress up. I never got the sense that he knew who he was as an artist. Not an uncommon trait among Idol hopefuls, and it’s the thing that will get a contestant booted pretty quickly.

Poor Jason Yeager was cannon fodder from the get go. But, even if the judges hadn’t been so unnecessarily harsh, he would not have gotten much farther. Jason has a great voice, but his old fashioned presentation is a turn-off. The show will at least raise his profile–he’ll get better gigs in Branson, where he lives. I’m sure the folks there will love him.

At the top of the show, Ryan Seacrest announces there were 31 million votes this week (By comparison, the S6 Top 20 garnered 32 million votes)

Bullsh*t explanation of the night: According to Randy Jackson, The songs of the past were better than the songs of today. Really Randy? I’ll bet he walked 20 miles back and forth to school when he was a kid too. Fake nostalgia, sucks y’all. (Sorry Bucky, it just does).

Of course, Randy answers the question with a cliche in order not to really answer it.

Ryan’s Mom wants to know about the “Half-Bullwinkle” tm blog peeps Simon’s been sporting all week. If you’ve been watching, you’ve probably noticed Simon sitting with his head resting on his thumb, his fingers pointing upward, like he’s giving his moose-hall blood-brothers the high-sign. Simon says, “There is a gesture I could give you, but I won’t.”

A reasonable reward, I say, for having to endure hour-long results show is that every results show MUST feature an awesome! Group! Number! This week’s medley of 70’s tunes isn’t quite as fabulous as last week’s 60’s tunes, but it will do.

Makes me very happy: The number opens with Michael Johns singing the opening verse of one of my all-time favorite songs from the era, Todd Rundgren’s, “I Saw The Light”. Todd is God y’all. For a moment I thought Michael’s t-shirt said “Pointy Pose”. That would have been so cool.

David Cook sings next. He’s wearing a tuxedo shirt. Didn’t work for Blake Lewis last year, and it’s not working for David C. this year. But I still love his singing.

Just how little is David Archuletta?

The girls join in. Kristy Lee Cook sounds better than usual opening Bonnie Tyler’s “It’s a Heartache”. Carly Smithson, showing off her tats again tonight, (that’s not all she’s showing off–another vowel works just as well) has the perfect vocal for this song. Alex Lushington is a talented singer. That is all. What the hell is wrong with Amanda Overmeyer? She sounds like crap again tonight. The hair, pulled off her face and clipped in the back, looks much, much better.

Brooke White gets a nice solo on a song that, as Paula would say, is “right in her pocket”. Carole King’s “I Feel the Earth Move” is the perfect showcase for her vocals. Jason Yeager, Kady Malloy and David Hernandez all acquit themselves well. Sadly, the bad choreography and singing that make the group sing so enjoyable are absent tonight. And although they strike a cool pose at the end, there aren’t nearly enough hands pointing heavenwards. Oh well, the 8o’s are next week. Here’s hoping the medley is full of delicious one-hit-wonders.

After the break, it’s time to get down to business.

But not before a recap of the guys performances. The camera cuts to the guys sitting on the couches, and they look n-e-r-v-o-u-s. The recap dwells on David Cook’s tiff with Simon during his critique. We see David, off camera say, “I actually kind of feel bad at the moment…I offended Simon and I didn’t mean to.” The clip of Michael Johns highlights Paula’s positive remarks, but conveniently leaves out Simon’s harsh critique of his lukewarm performance.

NOW it’s time for the first elimination.

Ryan asks for the back row to stand up: Jason Yeager, Danny Noriega, Chikezie, Jason Castro, and Michael Johns.

Michael Johns…safe. He’s overcome with relief as he sits down. Chickizie…is safe. He sits down slowly, letting the good news sink in. Ryan tells Jason Castro he’s got “bad news”. Jason raises his eyebrows, but the look on his face says, “Ryan is faking me out.” And Ryan is. Jason is safe. Danny Noriega and Jason Yeager are left standing. Ryan tells them that one is leaving, and one is safe. Danny is slack-jawed.

“America voted…Jason, it’s the end of the journey for you on American Idol.”

Jason says he knew, based on the judges criticisms, that he could be eliminated and that he tried to prepare himself. Jason has no regrets about his last performance, “I feel like I put everything out there…I was really surprised by their criticism.” Simon tells Jason that his problem is that “you don’t stand out in a crowd at the moment.” Jason’s family, sitting on the couch, look really pissed. Jason sings out, and it’s not horrible. Not at all. Jason was never given a fair shake, if you ask me.

The ladies are up next, and we see the highlights. After a clip of Carly Smithson performing, we hear Simon’s critique–well, the very end of it, when he tells her she’s the one to beat, not the first part where he tells her she’s disappointing so far. Similarly, the recap of Asia’h Epperson’s critique features Randy and Paula’s praise, rather than Simon’s harsh critique, where he basically tells her she’s not a great singer.

Ryan reminds the audience that the ladies were “very emotional” last week before he asks the back row to stand up. Kristy Lee Cook, Amanda Overmeyer, Alexandrea Lushington, Brooke White and Asia’h Epperson stand up. “One of them will be leaving us tonight, live.”

Ryan pauses, “It’s not going to be…Kristy, you can have a seat, you’re safe.” “Asia’h…you are safe, you can have a seat.” She lets out a little giggle, and sits down. “Brooke, who took a risk with the guitar…it seemed to work…you are safe, have a seat.”

“That leaves us, ” says Ryan, “With Amanda and Alexandrea. One of you is safe, and the other is going home…”

“…After the nationwide vote…Alexandrea…it’s the end of the road for you tonight.” Alex nods. Ryan continues, “Amanda, you are safe.”

Randy is really disappointed. He tells Alex that she picked the wrong songs. Paula tells her, “It’s not the end, it’s never the end on this show.”

Alexandrea performs her singout, a bit shell-shocked. David Archuleta, who has known Alex since they competed against each other on Star Search, is overcome. Luke Menard comforts him. After she finishes, she makes a beeline for David to give him a hug. It’s a bittersweet moment.

After the break, it’s time for another girl to bite the dust. Ryan asks the front row to stand up. Carly Smithson, Alaina Whitiker, Ramiele Malubay, Syesha Mercado and Kady Malloy all stand up. “One of you will be heading home.”

Carly…who is now feeling better, can take a seat, you’re safe, you’ll be back again next week.” She exhales slowly, sitting down. “One of our more emotional contestants, Ramiele…” She stares at Ryan. “Don’t do that to me, ” he says, “You’re safe.” “Syesha…you’re also safe. Take a seat.” Kady Malloy and Alaina Whitiker are left. Kady smiles and signals for Alaina’s hand. They walk out to center stage together.

“One of you got the lowest number of votes and is out. The other is part of the Bottom Three, but is safe.”

Alaina, you sang “Hopelessly Devoted to You” you got mixed reviews from the judges and Simon thought you were old fashioned. Kady, you sang “Magic Man” the judges thought you struggled and had problems with finding yourself…”

“…After the nationwide vote…Kady…” She smiles. She’s ready to go home. “You are SAFE.”

A look of utter disbelief crosses Kady’s face. She looks at Alaina, incredulous.

Alaina leaves us tonight on American Idol.” She hugs Kady. Alaina says, choked with tears, “I can’t sing.” This is heartbreaking. She’s truly a 17 year old kid, in over her head. Ryan attempts to comfort her. Kady and Ramiele are crying. Alaina tries to smile, but she does NOT want to sing.

Paula tells Alaina she’s a “gifted, bright, young talent, ” and that it’s “a start to an amazing career for you.” Ryan adds, “You should be very, very proud of yourself.” The camera cuts to Danny Noriega. His face is covered with tears.

“Because this is so emotional and tough, I’m going to give you a choice. If you want to sing, I’ll let you sing, If you don’t I’ll understand.” The crowd wants Alaina to sing. “I’m going to sound horrible!” she says. The girls join her on stage to give her support. Ryan leaves the stage, “The ladies of American Idol.” Ramiele cries, Paula does her seal clap, the girls sway behind her. Alaina sounds shaky, but she gets through it.

And damn, that was some GREAT Tee Vee.

After the break, Ryan has some very important Idol news. But at this point, who cares.

On March 11th the Top 12 will take the stage for the first time with a new set. Ryan reminds us that they will be the Best! Top 12! Evah! That remains to be seen. There will be a brand new boot song, sung by Ruben Studdard. Interesting!
Says Ryan, “On the strength of this years talent” cough “Sony ATV has released the Lennon/McCartney songbook for our contestants to butcher sing for the very first time.”

Oh. Boy. GULP.

Also, Idol Gives Back is coming back on April 9. Before we see a clip show of IGB highlights from last year, Ryan says, “The mission is to FINALLY win the Emmy WE DESERVE in the producer category raise even more money for starving and underprivileged children in America and in Africa.”

After the break, it’s the last goodbye of the night. But first, Ryan spills the beans on who will guest star on this year’s Idol Gives Back special: Brad Pitt, Miley Cyrus, Reese Witherspoon, Mariah Carey, Snoop Dog, Daughtry and Carrie Underwood. Ryan pretends to be spilling something he shouldn’t. Yeah, right.

Dim the lights! We’re running out of time…

“Front row please stand up.” A few of the guys groan as they stand. Luke Menard, David Hernandez, Robbie Carrico, David Cook and David Hernandez are standing.

Luke, Robbie, take the center of the stage, you other guys sit down. You are safe.” The Davids sit down. David H. lets out a sigh of relief.

“Alright, the journey ends for one of you tonight…the person going home tonight is…after the nationwide vote…”

Ryan stalls, “You sang Robbie, “Hot Blooded” blah blah cakes…get on with it Ryan …this is the end of the line for…Robbie.”

Ryan asks Robbie what he thinks happened. “I think it was a bad song choice, and I think I could have done it better.” Ryan asks Simon what he thinks, “I’ve said it from day one…it’s authenticity.” An annoyed look crosses Robbie’s face. “…and America saw what we saw, that was the problem. It just never, ever felt real, Robbie. Sorry.”

The bootees take the stage while their smell-ya-later videos flash on the big screen. Graham Colton’s “Best Days” plays in the background.

As the credits roll, Robbie sings out, and we’re done.

About mj santilli 34533 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!