No one puts the Mo in Motown quite like American Idol. We’re of course referring to last night’s lineup of themed performances, which saw most of our contestants taking an ax to their songs with a horrible suburban dinner theater approach. For most of the show we felt like we were watching some WASP-y high school drama club’s Songs of the Sixties revue. The one high point (and we’re swallowing about a gallon of pride to admit this): Our arch-nem Adam Lambert. Though he looked like an Elvis impersonator you’d see at a bar called The Mineshaft, his performance was totally original and he brought the house down. We were about to concoct a little zinger about how usually it’s Adam who’s the one going down, but we had to abstain and give credit where credit is due.
Smokey Robinson was the evening’s mentor and he looks suspiciously good for a man of about 300 years. His comments, on the other hand, were totally pointless. Nothing but drivel about how great it is to be on Idol and how fabulous all the contestants are. We said it last week and we’ll say it again: Miss Ross would’ve been the perfect choice. We can see her now, slapping Scott MacIntyre while he sits at the piano trying to perfect “You Can’t Hurry Love.” It could have been priceless people. Priceless.
Read all about Idol’s trip to the Motor City below.
8:01: Judges are revealed behind Idol’s odd moving partition and Paula is wearing a tutu with a lace bustier. Horrible. She’s kinda like Carrie Sadshaw.
8:03: Rounds is sporting an out-of-control weave tonight and I’m digging it. It’s slightly longer, with some Marilyn Monroe flair. You go girl.
8:04: Retrospective of Motown.
8:05: The contestants were apparently flown to Detroit to learn about Motown. Idol producers conveniently edit out the shots of them getting accosted by junkies. And the ones of Paula trying to score Baby T on the street.
8:07: Smokey Robison is the mentor during Motown week. His face is really, really tight. Seriously, more work has been done on Smokey than on the Hurricane Katrina cleanup.
8:08: Matt Giraud is performing first. Singing Marvin Gaye’s “Let’s Get It On.” He’s starting off on the piano. This is getting a little old, Matt. Time to get your move on. He’s not blind too, is he?
8:10: Alright, he’s up off the bench now. Sounds good. I think the judges are going to like this.
8:09: Wowza. His pants are super duper tight. Paula is licking her lips, I bet.
8:12: OK, judges’ verdicts: Randy thinks Matt is one of the best male competitors and Kara agrees, calling it “a solid performance.”
8:13: Simon also thinks he’s a front-runner and Paula’s, she’s just drooling and thinking about what it’d be like if she got it on with Matt.
8:14: Kris Allen is up after the break. We’re getting a little sick of his good ‘ole down-home charm. We’re secretly hoping someone named Grillz gave him a little beatdown in Detroit.
8:19: Back from commercial and he’s singing “How Sweet It Is” again by Marvin Gaye. There’s a lot of Gaye love on Idol tonight. Smokey says Kris blew him during rehearsals. Or was it blew him away? Oh well, same thing.
8:20: “Playing” his guitar again. God, I really am sick of him.
8:21: Paula is, of course, dancing and clapping. Tutu is out of control.
8:22: Kara calls the performance artistic (more like autistic) and says that he did everything right. Except have a personality, that is.
8:23: Uh-oh, we spoke too soon. Paula: “Your personality is infectious.” God, I hope I don’t get it.
8:24: Simon tells Kris needs to start believing in himself and that to be a recording artist you have to be conceited. Kris responds in his typical Little House On The Prairie fashion by saying, “I think the stuff about believing in myself is good, but I’m not so sure about the conceited part.” Aw, shucks. He’s such a good guy!
8:25: Blind is up next. Put me out of my misery.
8:30: After the commercial Ry-Guy says, “Good to see you Scott.” Too bad he can’t say the same.
8:31: Singing a slow version of “You Can’t Hurry Love.” During rehearsals Smokey says that he thought Scott really updated the song. Scott reveals he’s single. Quelle surprise!
8:33: This is what updated sounds like? More like something that might be performed at a nursing home talent show.
8:34: Blind conspiracy alert: After his performance, Scott got off the piano and moved quickly (too quickly for someone with vision impairment) toward the center of the stage for the judges’ comments. I knew this whole “I can’t see’ thing was just for votes. That sneaky bastard!
8:35: Simon thinks it was the wrong song and calls Blind’s performance “very cheap.”
8:36: Randy says it was “a very hotel kind of performance.” Thank you, dawg. Kara adds that he brought “tempo” tonight but that the liberties he took with the melody weren’t good.
8:38: Ry-guy asks Paula to rate Scott’s performance compared with Kris’s and Matt’s. As she tries to evade the question (or maybe her short-term memory loss is so bad that she’s already forgotten he asked it), Simon interrupts her and Paula responds by saying, “I’ve got something for Simon.” She then ducks down under the judges’ table for a REALLY long time. Apparently, we’ve just hit the “fellatio under the table” portion of the show.
8:39: Ah-ha!!!! Scott lets the cat out of the bag when he tells the audience to “vote for his pink pants.” Ry-guy asks the question on everyone’s mind: “How did you know they were pink?” Scott’s response: “Somebody told me.” Yeah, his gay stylist/co-conspirator.
8:43: After the commercial, Ry-Guy asks Paula what it was that she had under the table. Paula’s says, “It’s under my skirt.” Why again do parents let their kids watch this show? I’ve heard less sexual innuendo on the Playboy channel.
8:44: Corkey is next and Smokey thinks she’s a true original. I want to know what Smokey’s smoking.
8:45: Singing “For Once In My Life.” For once in my life, I’d love to see a contestant ejected by dropped her down a trick door on the stage.
8:46: Dude. So bad.
8:47: Randy calls it “a train wreck.” Kara agrees. Corkey is in such trouble. The audience isn’t even booing while the judges make negative comments. She’s so going home.
8:48: Paula, “Your stunning beauty just takes my breathe away.” OK, now I know what Paula has up her skirt. Simon says the song was atrocious and the arrangement was bad. Says she is in serious trouble tonight. Ob la di, ob la da, Corkey.
8:49: Corkey says she had a good time and that her fans are still there. Fans? Apparently, she took Simon’s conceited advice.
8:53: Anoop is up. He’s singing “Ooh Baby Baby.” No, not the Salt ‘N Pepa version (which would be awesome). From the rehearsal moments that are being shown, I think he’s really going to be good. I’m a totally Anoop convert after last week.
8:54: Smokey calls Anoop’s performance during rehearsal “very sensual.” Smokey then takes Anoop to his dressing room to show him his Robinson.
8:55: Uh-oh, the high parts aren’t as good as they sounded in rehearsals. This might not be good news for Anoop.
8:56: Yep, it’s getting a little tedious.
8:57: Kara says the song is hard to do and that Anoop’s version was “pretty good.”
8:58: Paula calls him “sweet and tender.” Simon says it was a great vocal but the performance was a little boring.
8:59: Randy wants Anoop to “get the party on.” Um, yeah. He looks likes he’s capable of that.
9:05: Back from the break and Oil Rigger is up. Doing “Ain’t Too Proud To Beg.” I’m not either: Please, please, please God. Put this sack out of his misery.
9:07: As I predicted: Totally painful. I can’t believe Alexis Grace is gone and this tool is still around.
9:08: Ending is so bad. It sounds like he stretching to hit the notes.
9:09: Paula says it felt a little “old Las Vegas, lounge-y” to her. Simon couldn’t wait for it to end and tells Oil Rigger he has no chance of winning if he sounds like that every week.
9:11 Randy says the song was a little too big for Oil Rigger and that he doesn’t have the chops for him.
9:13: Yes, my girl Rounds is up next!
9:17: She’s doing “Heat Wave.” I’m on the fence about this. It might be too literal. I’m scared for my girl.
9:18: I was really hoping she’d do The Supremes’ “Reflections.” She’d kill it!
9:20: Her vocals are good but she didn’t really do anything with the song. I’m loving her dress though. It’s a little fringe-y number. Very Tina Turner during the “Proud Mary” days.
9:21: Randy suggests that she stick to slower songs that really highlight her voice.
9:22: Kara agrees with me about the dress but also says that the song wasn’t right. Tells Rounds that she stayed too much to the melody.
9:23: The one dissenter in the ranks: Paula. She disagrees completely with Randy and Kara and says Rounds sounded totally fresh.
9:24: Simon sums it up by saying that the song didn’t give her “a moment.” “A Moment Like This”, perhaps? Says he’s dying to hear what she did a few weeks back when she blew everyone away.
9:26: Adam Lambert is next. Gross. Sporting a weird, cheap Elvis look.
9:30: Singing “Tracks Of My Tears.” Smokey says it was tender, sweet, and soft and that he never heard it that way before. I bet he took it that way before though.
9:32: It’s actually pretty good though — a very stripped version. He’s surprised me tonight. Not the same howler monkey screeching. I think the judges will like it.
9:33: I hate (and I mean HATE) to say it but I think this was the best performance of the night so far.
9:34: Kara is on her feet. Says, “I have six words for your: One of the best performances of the night.” God, I really hope Kara doesn’t do her own taxes. This bitch cannot count.
9:35: Paula calls Adam “exciting” and Simon says it was “the best performance of the night.” Adds, “You have emerged to me as a star.”
9:37: Hokey Gokey is next.
9:41: Singing Get Ready. Yeah, get ready for another lazy my-wife-died-so-I-don’t-really-have-to-try-because-dumb-saps-will-vote-for-me-anyway performance.
9:42: Yup, I was totally right. This is totally boring.
9:44: Doing some weird moves with the background dancers. Horrible. Just horrible.
9:45: Simon calls it clumsy and amateur. Randy loves the energy but agrees that it wasn’t his best performance. Kara says, “Good, but not great.” Finally, some judge hate for Hokey Gokey.
9:46: Irahetes is up next and closing the show.
9:50: She’s going to be singing “Poppa Was A Rolling Stone.” I really hope she nails it. We need a little girl love tonight.
9:51: What in the hell is she wearing though? The lace leggings are killing me.
9:52: Performance is pretty great though. I like that she chose an interesting song. It’s not super fluffy like some of the other contestant’s choices.
9:53: Killed the last note. Amazing.
9:54: Judges loved it.
9:55: Simon drew a hilarious mustache on Paula’s face that she’s trying hide while she gives her comments. I bet it’s way better than what’s usually on her face.
9:57: OK, my prediction for tomorrow night’s results show: Corkey is totally gone. At least I hope she is. Bottom three: Corkey