It’s Hollywood week, the competition, the drama, the passion. The contestants pack up and head out to lay it all on the line. “What makes the dawn rise with thunder, what makes the Sphinx the seventh wonder, courage. What makes the hot in tot so hot, who put the A in Apricot, what do they got that I ain’t got, courage.” Thanks for that Steven, and by the way…yes the noise in your head does bother me sometimes. DAWG declares season 11 is “ON like Donkey Kong!” Now that’s more my language.
Contestants start in groups of ten and perform without any feedback. Sudden death round will send half of the contestants home. The first group is up with two of the judge’s favorites, Johnny Keyser. DAWG keeps going “mmmm…mmmm…Amen!” Either he likes it or he is thinking about his next meal. Heejun is up next and he belts out some Michael Bolton. Judges are still making comments and JHO says he brought tears to her eyes. Both boys live to see another day.
Elise Testone sings next and judges put up their diva hands. Baylie Brown and Hallie Day give it a whirl and make the cut. Jen Hirsh is up and her goal is not to fidget. Steven goes to his happy place and doesn’t want her to stop singing. Lauren Gray is so into her song that she doesn’t see the DAWG wave the double diva hands. Both go through.
A string of girls hit some bad luck and beg for second chances to sing more. Steven looks dumbfounded and DAWG is not so pleased. Steven decides it’s time for a pep talk and wants to see more energy. Phil Phillips rocks out first, I am not sure if he’s sounding so good and judges look blank. Reed Grim does his thing, but I think it looks grim for him. Travis Orlando is up next and judges appear to be mildly enjoying it. Phil and Reed go through and Travis is rejected AGAIN. You can’t help but feel for the kid, but in the end he probably wouldn’t have gotten far.
Judges continue to hand out walkin’ papers to the boy born without ears, The Wolfman, and the girl who gave Steven herpes of the mouth.
Adam Brock says he has a large black woman trapped inside his body and he sings “Walkin’ in Memphis” for JHO. Jane Carrey is up next and falls flat and she knows it. Adam is in, but Jane tanks worse than her father’s movie “Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events”.
Shannon McGrane is up next an she takes on “Fallen” by Alicia Keys. Simon Cowell would be schvitzin in his little grey sweater if he were there. Next up is the lady killer, David Leathers, Jr. He sounds just like a young Michael Jackson, it’s kinda eerie. He actually gets a standing O and Steven tells him he has ties that are older than him, which is a weird analogy because 1) Aren’t all ties pretty much around forever and 2) I have never seen Steven Tyler wear a tie. I think this is as close as he gets to wearing a “tie”:
As we go to the commercial break we are teased with “one of the most shocking moments in Idol history” and then we see someone fall and hear an audio clip over the footage of Steven’s voice sounding stoned saying “aww…she hit her head too.”
Erica Van Pelt is up and she’s wearing a little vest that looks like she stole it off of her Raggedy Andy doll. Creighton Fraker attempts a Queen song, and he sounds a bit nasaly for my taste. Aaron Marcellus is up next and JHO is all excited about him. All three sail into the next round.
Lauren Mink, the girl that works with disabled adults, is up next. We have high hopes for her, but she changes keys and JHO is madder than a cat in a pillowcase. Jeremy Rosato a.k.a. “Dirty” as nicknamed by the DAWG. Turns out he is a front desk clerk at a doctor’s office for infectious diseases…annnnnnnnd…he’s a germophobe. He says he’s “all germed up and ready to go”. JHO is showing Steven her goosebumps, but he doesn’t look amused. Symone Black is up next and something is going horribly awry with her, she can barely stand up, and she falls off the end of the stage. Nigel Lithgoe walks in like this is par for the course and calls in his robotic voice three times “Medic please!” OHRS and the rest of the judges flock around to rubberneck.
Sidebar: Before Symone fell, DAWG was asking her why she chose the song she did and she said she wanted to appeal to an “older crowd”. DAWG takes a bit of offense to this and asks if she thinks he’s old…C’Mon DAWG…don’t be so vein, you’re barely a teenager in DAWG years.
We’re back for the second round of cuts during group night. The producers tease us with more fast-paced shots of various contestants laying on the floor, ambulances, sirens, and OHRS shouting expletives and pushing people out of the way. I am sure it’s just fodder to keep me watching for the next 60 agonizing minutes. All I know is they need to pick up the pace quickly, this has been a very boring start to the season.
We rehash Symone Black’s accident, yeah the incident that was cut off of the end of every DVR recording in America last night. The remaining contestants form a prayer circle, DAWG leaps over the judging table to gawk…JHO jumps down to stare, because I am sure 80 people hovering over her is what Symone needs right now. They get her some soda and saltines and she is off to the hospital.
Key changing Lauren Mink, Jeremy “Dirty” Rosado, and Ethan Jones await their fate. Lauren and Ethan do not make it. After all is said and done, 185 hopefuls must now choose up for the group round. This is where the rubber meets the road, it separates the men from the boys…the pandemonium ensues as the day one and day two contestants have to form groups with members from both days. It comes down to the last five misfits and they are arguing over their song choice. Aggressive Alicia the cop is the odd woman out and she is scrambling to find a group to sing “Joy to the World”, but her bossy tactics aren’t working. Annnnnd…the fact that these young kids think she means the Christmas song. Haha!
Brielle Von Hugel is a second time auditioner, so she is bossing her group around as her Momager hovers over their rehearsal and shit talks to the camera about baby faced Kyle Crews, who is leading their group number.
Symone returns from the hospital, re-hydrated and ready to find a group. She finally settles in to a group, but her Stage Dad won’t leave them alone. He’s borderline creepy and Symone tells him to “get out of here” as he gathers the group together for a secret huddle.
Amy Brumfield a.k.a., Tent Girl has been sick all day. She is craving fresh air that only living in a tent in the woods can provide. It appears many of the other contestants are falling ill and throwing up into industrial sized trash bags.
Hejun and Richie the cowboy are not seeing eye to eye. Hejun gets line of the night “I have a very bad perspective on cowboys, even Dallas cowboys.”
A girl group called “The Betty’s” starts falling apart. Two girls stayed up the entire night practicing while the others slept. The next day they are up first before the judges, but as my TiVo indicates, we are at the 58-minute mark of this excruciating hour and we will not see any singing tonight.
The entire episode is just about groups forming, practicing, catching bird flu, and puking into clear trash bags. Tune next week for more puking, a little collapsing, and maybe some singing? If these contestants don’t kill each other over their personalities or with their infectious diseases first!