Idolator’s American Idolatry: Antonella Sings Celine, And Other Groaners
Welcome to Idolator’s American Idolatry, our episode-by-episode breakdown of the star-making machine that is American Idol. Last night’s episode, like Tuesday’s, was centered around dedications to friends, family members, and stylists; what it lacked in super-weird song/dedication matches, it made up in bad fashion, weird scatting–and, yes, Antonella Barba taking on Celine Dion.
THE HIGHLIGHTS: Once again, ladies’ night was all about Melinda and Lakisha, although this evening Melinda’s spellbinding performance of “My Funny Valentine” had the edge; her take was both gorgeous and thoughtful. Meanwhile, Lakisha’s nerves caused her to stumble out of the gate on “Midnight Train To Georgia,” but she recovered enough that the crowd was pretty much eating out of her hand by the end. If either of these two don’t win, we are going to call shenanigans.
CELINE/WHITNEY/MARIAH QUOTIENT: 30%: The show closed with two Whitney songs (Haley’s screamy version of “Queen Of The Night,” where she let the backing singers do the heavy lifting, and Sabrina’s not-so-great take on “All The Man I Need”), while Antonella sang “Because You Love Me.” Which brings us to …
ANTONELLAWATCH: Here’s the thing about her Celine performance: When you put it in the context of last week’s monotone trainwreck, it wasn’t that bad. But it wasn’t very good, either; her leaping into falsetto at the end was nice, but otherwise she played it safe, sticking within her limited vocal range / big smile comfort zone. The best part had to be when she compared herself to Jennifer Hudson in the face of the judges’ criticisms–um, honey, no. (Also, did anyone else notice her standing there with crossed arms and a sour face during others’ performances? We know she doesn’t have “professional training,” but didn’t she at least learn some manners?)
AND BY THE WAY: Sabrina dedicated “All The Man I Need” to … her grandmother.
THE PERFORMANCE THAT MADE US WRITE “OH, GOD, THE SCATTING” IN ALL CAPS IN OUR NOTEBOOK: Poor, poor Leslie. She tried to stand out by singing Nina Simone’s “Feeling Good.” But it closed out with a bunch of scatting that sounded like … well, it sounded like she’d stuffed her mouth with marbles and was trying to explain her outfit (think Madonna circa “Borderline” meets Mary-Kate Olsen). Even Ryan reading the transcription of the scatting after her performance sounded less embarrassing.
WHO WE VOTED FOR (IN OUR HEARTS): Melinda and Lakisha. Really, no one else came close.
WHO AMERICA WILL PROBABLY CUT: Logically? Alaina, who dedicated an atrocious version of “Not Ready To Make Nice” to her mom, and Leslie. But for some reason, we have a bad feeling about Stephanie, too; her take on Beyonce’s “Dangerously In Love” was decent, but we can’t help but wonder if the song choice was just a little too weird for the people who were only tuned to Idol because they were eagerly awaiting episode two of Are You Smarter Than A Fifth Grader?
PAULA ABDUL OUT-OF-IT SCALE: 8/10, although her telling performers that they were “so much better” than last week appears to have replaced “you’re pretty” as her say-something-nice tactic.