Thursday, January 14, 2010

American Idol Season Nine, Episode 2: Atlanta Auditions

Pants on the ground! Pants on the ground! Walkin' like a fool with your pants on the ground!

I hereby make a motion to have that song named as our new National Anthem. Do I have a second? I'd certainly stand up when it was played (and made sure that my pants were up, too)!

All through watching this episode, I kept thinking that it just wasn't as good as Tuesday night's episode, Mary J. Blige notwithstanding. (I've got to tell you, I love guest judges. They're almost always knowledgable about the music industry, they offer constructive, useful criticism, and they don't go out of their way to crush anyone. That being said, Mary J. Blige was good, but she seemed a little out of her element, a little shellshocked at being there.)

Then General Larry Platt walked into my life, and I will never be the same. Please, please, please let him get into the Finale. I want there to be fireworks, and a full gospel choir chanting "Pants on the ground!" and then I want General Larry to burst onto the stage, only to be surprised by Jay-Z! Yeah, they totally need to let me plan this thing. I would do it RIGHT.

Ok, I can't spend my whole post talking about General Larry and his Theme Song of Awesomeness. Sure, I could, it is my blog after all, but people actually came to Atlanta to audition for the show! I felt like there were more bad auditions than good, but it was OK for this episode. There were the usual amounts of ridiculousness, of course, but I've just learned to roll my eyes and laugh, imagining the ridiculously deluded lives they must live. Is this the way they conduct themselves in the world? Don't show up to my office acting that way.

Alright, let's talk about the elephant in the room. I know y'all were thinking that, given my very vocal dislike of one Kelli Pickler, that I would be ardently against the bridge-jumping country singer from Tennessee. You'd be partly correctly, because I was ready for this girl. I was loaded for battle, the building up my snark arsenal for her continued appearance on the show. I couldn't stand the thought of yet another dumb Southern blonde on this show. But the more she talked, I realized she wasn't playing a role at all, and she wasn't playing stupid, either. She wasn't playing anything at all, and she's not in the least bit dumb. Country, yes! Unsophisticated? My, yes! But what I liked about her was that she was very honest, and she didn't have any pretense about herself at all. That's something that I can appreciate, and that's a contestant for whom I can cheer. Will she make it past the Hollywood rounds? I don't know--she's raw, and she needs a lot of work, but don't you hear June Carter Cash when she opens her mouth? I certainly can. I'd love to get my hands in her hair and give her hair a serious hot-oil treatment. And a blow-out. Maybe a less brassy color. But overall, I just want to see her succeed.

Something I've noticed is missing that I don't miss at all? The forced sing-along. You know what I'm talking about. They all make the contestants sing the same thing at their audition, then the producers smash them all together to make them look ridiculous? We're so much better off without it. I don't know if all the producers are concussed and aren't functioning as normal, but I like it. Keep it up, AI producers! Remember that this is a singing competition!

Next week, we're off to Chicago, where I am forced to sit through an entire episode with Shania Twain. At least I won't have to listen to her 'sing'. Promise? And it will only be an hour, right? Not two. Not an hour and a half. Please, please for the love of music, don't make me sit through two hours of Shania. Please?


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