Okay, so not all that mondo…but some MAC nonetheless…
Starting with Grease…
They are clearly making it up as they go along, but whatever. We find out which two Danny’s and which two Sandy’s are in the bottom two. And, despite the fact that we voted and someone lost, these two must sing off and, I guess (they don’t really explain much) the judges decide which of the two go home. Again, whatever. For the guys, it’s Second Chance Matt (duh) and Jason. For Sandy’s it’s Second Chance Ashley (duh squared) and Allie. I’m pretty sure it’s the second chance kids going home. So I guess it gets interesting next week.
In the meantime, we get this week’s performances by the remaining D’s and S’s. Again, I guess. Does the sing off song count for the guy who doesn’t go home? I know, I’m being so silly, wanting to know, you know, how the show is supposed to work.
First up we get Max and Laura. This week they’re singing show tunes (which makes MUCH more sense than last week’s pop songs) and we have Andrew Lloyd Weber as the guest judge. As they are singing some of the songs he made famous, just a little pressure.
Max sings Somewhere in Your Heart tonight and does a servicable job. Laura sings Jesus Christ Superstar (no, I’m not kidding) and they showed a clip from rehearsal where ALW tells her she might be the first woman to ever sing the song in performance. Hunh. The live sing isn’t as impressive as the rehearsal clip. Mostly I think it’s because they don’t have the kids mic’d right. The music overwhelms them and I don’t think it’s from lack of vocal power. (And was it me, or did they have her sing this at like double speed?) Judges – ALW pats Max on the back, but gushes over Laura. Jim is Paula. Kathleen wants more swagger from Max, loved Laura. David likes how Max has changed his look and says he noticed Laura for the first time. (Backhanded compliment much?)
Next up, we get Ashley Spencer and Derek. Derek is first with Footloose. He does okay, if not real strong vocally (nice biceps though.) The dancing was more distracting than it was sexy (for me.) AS sings Take That Look Off Your Face. I don’t know this song, but she handles it okay. Nothing wow, but not bad. I don’t remember more except that her green dress matched her eyes perfectly. Judges – Kathleen says they both did well. ALW praises their strengths. Jim was worried during rehearsals, but thought it went great. David gushes.
It’s Kevin and Juliana’s turn. Kevin sings Elvis’s Burning Love. And, uh, he’s no Elvis. He sings it more like a Rat Packer…or something. He sings well, but he’s a few quarts short in the testosterone department and this song demands that. Juliana sings Don’t Cry for Me Argentina from Evita. Yeah, I’m not seeing her pull that off. The rehearsal footage bears that out as well. Don’t get me wrong, she can sing…she just doesn’t connect with the material all that well. Too Minnie Mouse in some ways, but she does better than I thought she would. Judges? David agrees with me that Kevin isn’t leader of the pack material. Also agrees Juliana isn’t emotional enough. ALW feels they both felt short in putting the character in the song. Kathleen wants Kevin to find the show off inside of him and felt Juliana gave it a good shot, but needs to break out more. Jim – whatever.
It was nice to see ALW really involving himself in the process and with the performers. His criticism is constructive and well reasoned. Good guest judge!
The group does a performance from Phantom of the Opera. I know it’s on par with blasphemy, but I’m not a Phantom Phan, so I could have happily fast forwarded through this part. Yawn.
Now we get Chad and Kate with Chad singing My Eyes Adored You and Kate singing Buenos Aires from Evita. Chad cutie patootie was just fine but then all he had to do was stand there and sing and be sparkly eyed. Kate had a tougher road. She really had to perform the song, and, over all, I thought she did a good job. A hair screechy when she went for it too much, but she definitely drew your attention. I like her anyway, but tonight she projected character really well. Judges? ALW tells us that Kevin has the flu, which might explain the understated performance. And he just loved how Kate pulled off her song. I tend to agree. She was the first one who really made me want to watch her. Jim….zzzzz. Kathleen wants Chad to project and loved Kate. David agrees she belted it out. I’d vote for her.
Next? Austin and Kathleen sing their way into our hearts. Well, they want to. Austin is out of his comfort zone, doing a very athletic singing number with a high pitch. He gets Ease On Down the Road (which I love) from The Wiz. He pulls off the dance aspect just fine, but the singing is servicable more than memorable. As with most songs tonight, it ends better than it begins. Kathleen gets ALW’s Memory from Cats. She’s not my favorite and, but she handles this huge song fairly well. A few bobbles, but considering she’s not my fave, I didn’t fast forward through her, which is a start. Judges? ALW said she did better with it than he thought she would. Kathleen thought they both pulled off challenging performances. Jim – drool drool, gush gush. David thought Austin’s was the best Danny performance and thought Kathleen was “special.” Whatever.
Next? It’s bottom four time. (My parrot loves the crowd cheering. He’s certain it’s all for him.) Each of the four must sing Tears on My Pillow (oooh, the Tap The Shoulder song. Vicious.) I hope they don’t tap their shoulder tonight. Cruel. Jason is first, then Matt, then Ashley, then Allie. Wow, they have them stand in a line, then just step forward and sing. Jeez. No pressure or anything. Jason is fine. I like him anyway and was surprised he ended up in the bottom. Matt steps in, and while he has improved a great deal, he should go home. Allie takes over and emotes emotes emotes, then Ashley finishes up. She also does much better. I think she should be the one to go. (Note to producers: Don’t bring back people you already kicked off, k? Waste. Of. Time.)
Who goes home? Matt and Ashley. (Duuuuh.)
Which means Jason and Allie have to go perform their songs for the night. (Why couldn’t they just explain this up front?) Jason gets Buddy Holly’s That’ll Be the Day. You know, he does come out with the swagger and he does have the singing chops, but for a big square jawed guy, there is just something effeminate about him. I think that’s what put the audience off. He should be all Sam the Plow Guy but he comes off more like Sam the Plow Guy’s mani/pedi technician. For whatever reason, they judge Jason by himself. Judges? David says he needs to get a lot better. Jim wastes air time. Kathleen says he’s skilled but too superficial. ALW says he thought the transformation was successful. Huh? Whatever. Allie’s turn.
Allie comes out all belting out I Don’t Know How to Love Him From JC Superstar. She has a classic voice, but she looks very plastic blonde. Which is perfect for Sandy, really. But this song? I’ve had so many men before? Yeah, that was convincing. But they’re not casting her in Jesus Christ Superstar. (Lucky for her.) Judges? Kathleen thinks she should be more vulnerable and less perfect blonde. David says the same. Jim drools. ALW thinks she’s one of the best actresses and can go a long way, but should draw on all the help she can.
Aaaaaaand, show. Vote. I’m not compelled to just yet. Right now, I think Kate, with Laura a close second, but my vote is still out on the guys. The judges picks? David? Austin and Laura. Kathleen goes for Derek and Kathleen. Jim says Max and Laura. But what I’m most interested in is ALW…and he goes for Derek and Laura.
It’s Survivor: Fiji. They make them build a luxury camp, then send the woman who helped them build it to Exile Island with a bunch of poisonous snakes AND make her come back to the losing team who get sent to purgatory beach camp. She did get immunity that week, but sheesh. Makes a person want to not play the game and just sit back. Anyway – interesting group so far. I love Yao Man. And lots of guys who don’t like to wear shirts. Hey, you watch for your reasons, I watch for mine. But I find myself missing Yul and Ozzy. Just sayin.
Tune in tomorrow for the next SHaQ Attack contest! Also – see my reader letter on my home page (link in the column to your right) to find out about the contest I’m running there. Good luck!