[I wanted to do this last season, but I got the idea a few episodes too late. I do admit, I watch American Idol. I really didn't start until a couple years ago, though (my mom was a much bigger fan). Similar in style to the Live Survivor Blog over at Blog Cabins, Idol Chatter (pun and all) will be a play by play of the episodes and what I think of what's happening.]
Alrighty! The first official episode of American Idol season 9 has begun (by official, I mean episodes where the Top 24 begin performing and people can start voting)! Tonight it's the Top 12 Girls. So let's get it started.
(By the way, if you're not familiar with how this works... just keep refreshing this page for updates.)
7:00: "And this... is American Idol!"
7:02: Despite the controversy around his dad dropping the news too soon, Big Mike (not Mendez) is still on the show. Good.
7:03: Simon says a girl will win this year. I disagree... but we'll see.
7:05: Ellen: "Simon... wants me." God, I love Ellen DeGeneres.
7:06: Paige Miles (who?) is up first. She's singing "All Right Now" by Free.
7:08: Dear God, this is terrible. The music seems muted, emphasizing her singing, which is like horrible karaoke.
7:09 - 7:11: Simon says she has the best voice of all the girls... but the song sounded wedding singer-ish. Kara disagrees and loved it. Randy loved it. Ellen is hilarious. These judges are crazy.
7:16 - 7:19: Ashley Rodriguez is up next. Wow does this girl look like Rosario Dawson. She's singing "Happy" by Leona Lewis. Starts off quiet but picks up. Doing a good job. Couple shaky notes. Overall not impressed, but much better than the last girl.
7:19 - 7:21: Kara didn't care for it and thinks she should do something that... isn't her. Randy agrees. Ellen agrees. Simon agrees ("clumsy"). These judges are crazy.
7:26: Janell Wheeler is up. Crossing my fingers... please be good, please be good... And she's singing...
7:27: "What About Love" by Heart... and she's doing really well.
7:28: Eh... I spoke too soon. The song picked up, and her voice started falling apart. Ugh... I think my brain just convulsed from that note.
7:29: Randy didn't like the song. Ellen liked the song choice. Simon says she started off well but then fell apart. Thumbs up. And Kara? Didn't like the song. I'm with the judges on this one, finally.
7:31: Randy: "You know what I'm sayin?" Janell: "Yeah..." Me: *blinks and shakes head*
7:36: Up next? Lilly Scott. I like this girl. She's quirky. You can tell by her white, wig-like hair. (Seriously, though, I do like this girl... to a degree) And she totally has a singer name. What's she singin?
7:37: "Fixing A Hole" by The Beatles. Starts kinda shaky... but picks up. Wasn't sure her loungy style fit the song, but it's working out well. Finally, a good song tonight. Now Season 9 has started for the girls. I liked this one quite a bit.
7:39: Ellen: "That's what we're talkin about." Simon: "Best we've had so far." Kara: "You come from your heart." Randy: "You're more like a real indie artist." Is that like an oxymoron? An Indie Idol? Anywho... good stuff.
7:46: Next is... Katelyn Epperly. Big hair. And she's singing...
7:47: "Oh Darling" by The Beatles. And she's doing wonderfully so far. In fact, this is even better than (the wonderfully named) Lilly Scott. Though it's hard not to stare at her hair... there's just... so much of it.
7:48: Simon thought it was screamy and messy (but he likes her)? Ugh. Kara thought she switched up the song nicely, but doesn't like the make-over. Randy liked her tone and/or vibe (and "make-up thing"). Ellen liked it a lot, though maybe kinda forced.
7:52: Kara: "I know what her thought bubble was: 'bitch'." lol.
7:53: Oh God... Haeley Vaughn. She's singing "I Wanna Hold Your Hand" by The Beatles. This girl gets on my nerves. I've never liked her voice, and the judges over-rate her. First off, she has a lisp, and it bugs me when she sings. I mean, she's not terrible (in general). Her voice is just irritating. And she's dressed like a hippy, slutty nurse or something. And this particular song was just bad.
7:55: The judges say she's unpredictable (mostly in outfits and song choice) and she has presence... but her voice is crap.
7:58: Did she say her high school team are the "Pooters"? I don't care much for sports, but I'd totally go to cheer on the "Pooters." I mean, you'd have to be entertaining with a name like that.
8:02: Ryan: "All songs from tonight will be available on iTunes." Why, God, why?
8:03: Lacey Brown! I like this girl, too. Let's see how she does. She's singing... "Landslide" by Fleetwood Mac.
8:04: Ugh... really bad start. Seems terribly off key most times. I do like the song arrangement, though. It's mostly the same, but she did change a couple notes here and there. Random note: They just showed the guys sitting off the side. Jeez, Big Mike is... well... big. Seriously. He takes up like two seats. Pure muscle.
8:05: Randy thought it was terrible. Wow, even Ellen hated it ("if you're back next week..."). Simon: "I actually thought it was quite depressing." el oh el. Need I say it? Kara didn't like it. But they love her eyes! And I agree with the judges. She wasn't good... and she has pretty eyes.
8:13: Ryan's just killing time... let's get to the singing. Up next? Michelle Delamor. What's she gonna sing?
8:14: "Falling" by Alicia Keys. Wow... doing well (though not doing well in breaking the stereotype of black girls on this show only being good at singing songs by other black singers). But yeah, finally... another good song tonight. I think this makes 2 now?
8:16: Ellen: "That was fantastic... but you can do better." Simon thought it was too close to the original, but she'd done enough to get through. I just really noticed Kara's dress. I think it's trying to swallow her like a Graboid or something. Anyway... Randy wants her to take risks. In other words, you're a great singer, but go further than those stereotypes!
8:19: Next girl... Didi Benami. Probably the strangest name of the girls. "That Way I Am" by Ingrid Michaelson. A girl with a weird name chooses a song by a singer with an equally weird name. And the singing? Kinda, well... weird. But in a strangely good way. Though not sure I would have chosen this song. Nobody will be able to connect with it. A bit boring. Still, the singing was pretty good.
8:21: Simon says everybody's trying to sing like Adelle and Duffy, and it was kinda dull. I agree. Kara talks, but Simon interrupts: "Nobody's going to remember that." I agree again. Randy: "No star power... a bit sleepy." Ellen: "A song for the first night to get millions of people to reach for you ... for that first impression, a little too low key." My thoughts exactly.
8:29: Siobhan Magnus the Glassblowing Apprentice. I take back what I said about Didi.
8:30: "What's being a dark horse mean?" And she's singing... wow, I don't even know (I missed it), but this song is horribly annoying. Her voice isn't bad... but, wow... that was kinda annoying.
8:33: Judges really liked it. Imagine that. Simon: "You really are a funny little thing, aren't you?"
8:36: Apparently the song is "Wicked Game" by Chris Isaak. Yeah. Don't care to hear that song again. Anywho...
8:39: Finally! Crystal Bowersox! AKA Bad Teeth Girl. "Hand in my Pocket" by Alanis Morissette.
8:40: Playing the guitar... and the harmonica... and singing really well. Seriously, this girl is one of if not my favorite(s) of the girls. And... wow, she whitened her teeth. Great all around.
8:42: Randy really liked it. Ellen is a fan. Simon really likes her, but wants her to do something... less like her (ten bucks that next week they'll tell her to be more herself). Kara liked it, too.
8:49: Katie Stevens. The last of the night. 17 years old. Uplifting family story. Let's get to it. What are you singing?
8:50: "Feeling Good" by Michael Buble. She has a lot to live up to, because Adam Lambart rocked this song last year. Really liking it so far. I feel awkward. She's 17 and trying to be sexy for America. Overall, not nearly as good as Mr. Lambert's, but still pretty good.
8:52: Ellen thinks it was a bit too old for her. Simon agrees and adds in an "annoying and pageant-y." Kara says pitchy. Randy agrees overall and ends with a wise "You can only be 17 once," because singing an old song makes you stop living your life.
8:55: Oh God, the recap. I think my eardrums might explode. Lilly Scott, Michelle Delamor, and Crystal Bowersox were the best of the night.
Final Notes: This was a terrible first night. I so hope the guys are much better than the girls. But I love the guys this year. And seriously, Simon... you think one of those is gonna win this year? Yeah, I doubt it. What a bad way to kick off the voting portion of the season.
So, thoughts on the episode? The singers? This new feature?