Amanda Overmyer: In Memoriam

noah | March 20, 2008 9:30 am

Is there anything more excruciating than watching American Idol‘s elimination episodes? The phoned-in questions! The phoned-in attempts to stretch out the Idol ad inventory by pummeling the audience with medleys, rehashing the things that everyone already saw, and endlessly previewing “Idol Gives Back”! While there are some useful moments on these episodes–like finding out that Dolly Parton, Neil Diamond, Mariah Carey, and, uh, Andrew Lloyd Webber will be serving as mentors this season–all the business done within could be done in way, way less than an hour. But that’s an old complaint. Here’s a new one: Amanda Overmyer went home in lieu of Kristy Lee Cook, who skated by on her “only countryish artist in the whole group” charm for the second straight week, despite being one of the weakest performers from the whole top 24, let alone the finalists.

It’s not all that surprising–after Tuesday’s performance episode I read the comments on Ken Barnes’ Idol Chatter over at USA Today‘s site, and the commenters there, who are probably a bit more representative of the Idol-voting public than the people over here (no offense, obv) disliked Kristy, but they really had their knives out for Amanda, who was a) weird b) atonal c) did I mention weird? Not to mention that the younger part of the Idol voting public wasn’t even alive when the USSR was an actual international entity, so they were probably bewildered by what Amanda was going on about during her song Tuesday.

But I’m starting to wonder if Kristy is Teflon enough to withstand a few more eliminations. If Carly was in the bottom three, is no female safe? Will Kristy really be the last woman standing because she has the sympathies of the country-loving crowd and the blonde-girl-loving crowd? I can actually see it happening, although I suspect that all the remaining females will be eliminated before one more guy goes home.

(Side note: Did anyone catch how, immediately after being told that she was safe, Kristy launched into an extended “I’m so sorry routine” to Amanda, who stifled a smile and told her more firmly than politely to take her place on the couch with the Top 10? For some reason the utter high schoolness of the whole exchange–winsome Kristy pouring the saccharine all over misfit Amanda, who was not having a minute of it–made me want to squirm on Amanda’s behalf.)

Anyway, here’s to you, Amanda, for injecting something at least a little interesting, if not always in tune, into the Idol proceedings. Next time you play a bar in New York, let me know, because the whiskey’s on me.

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