Friday, May 28, 2010

Yay for a New Season - So You Think You Can Dance - 5.27.10

Big changes at SYTYCD this year!  Only 10 dancers will make it into the finals, and they will be paired with returning favorites.  Not sure how I feel about that, but I'm looking forward to seeing some people return (Mark).

The first audition city is NYC. Nigel, Adam, and Mia are judging.  Hooray for no Mary!  I think I read that she may be choreographing, but not judging.  If that is true, the season just got so much better, because I could live happily my whole life without ever hearing her scream again.  Ever.

Sarah Brinson (22, Philadelphia) She has always felt like the "big" dancer, because she is a larger size than your average dancer.  I hope that she is phenomenal, because I think she's got a gorgeous shape (and she's maybe a size 10.  If that.  She's strong and curvy.  I love it.)  She has really nice lines and Nigel said that she looks like Charlize Theron.  She says that she gets that a lot, and I can see that.  Mia thinks that she dances beyond her years.  Her parents are golfers.  Adam loves how self assured she is.  Vegas for her.  Wonderful.  Then, she snubbed Adam for a hug and he got bitchy.

Giselle Peacock & Henry Byalakov - They are latin ballroom dancers, and they are hottttt.  They just got off Broadway.  Mia and Adam agreed that they were smoking.  Adam told them that they just tore up the floor.  Nigel saw them in Burn the Floor and thought they were stars there, too.  To Vegas with them!

Montage of a delusional trio, 1 2 3 Party!  In his audition, one member did a lot of what looked like aerobics and bad 80's dance moves.  The judges looked confused.  So was I.  Then, he didn't know who Adam Shankman was, who was sitting right in front of him.  Wow.  He calls himself Lazer, and his team mates are Ice and Ultra.    Enter montage of more bizarreness.

Welcome back, Teddy Tedholm! I really dig the conviction with which he moves.  Adam was either loving him or really bored. At the end, he said "Oh my God," and Mia was also "upset," and she was crying and saying that he reminded her of the unpopular kid who was always laughed at and made fun of, and the pain and reality that he brings is moving.  She called him genius.  Adam loves how he puts himself out there, and said that it was really really special, and said he is honored to have watched it.  Nigel accused him of upsetting the entire panel, and said that he previously saw him as a whimsical dancer, but was disappointed in him in Vegas. He hopes that he won't be disappointed again, because he's going.

Also going, Briana de Falco, who was glorious, Daniel Baker, who had an amazing leap and great pecs.  Both to Vegas.

Scott Vogel cleans up when people get murdered, but he really wants to dance.  He is really terrible.  He does country line dancing.  Oh, and he also runs a cereal bar.  Ummm...ok. 

Shockalock is apparently the king of locking.  Chris "Isolock" Dixon is bringing his new style to locking.  He's dressed like the Cheshire Cat, and has a picture of Nigel on the top of his top hat, which was kind of fun.  Then he threw some Russian folk dance kicks in there.  It certainly was entertaining!  Nigel loved the eccentricity of him, and thinks that Toni Basil would be frothing at the mouth to see him.  Mia wants to know if he can do more.  Adam was impressed with the knee kicks like they do in Bollywood, and the Russian folk bits.  He's on to choreography.

He joins 33 others in choreography, taught by Courtney and Jason.  Can Chris "Isolock" bring it?  He looked horrible.  And then he dropped his partner.  He's out.  15 others are going on.

Jamie Greco makes horror movies and decided to audition dressed as Carmen Miranda.  And then stripped off his oat and had broccoli taped to his man boobs.  Then "pooped" an orange.  That was... interesting.  Adam was happy.  Mia appreciated his love affair with fruit and vegetables.  He's not going on.

Montage of people falling.  Sometimes painfully. 

Wadi Jones is a free runner.  His dancing seemed rather uninspired. Some of his moves were impressive, but he didn't connect to me.  Mia loved how light and quiet his footwork was.  Adam was also impressed.  Nigel sent him to choreography.

Anthony Burrell (wasn't he in a previous season, too) is amazing.  Megan Davis is lovely.  Vegas and Vegas.

Edward Spots
auditioned in season 6, and he's back.  And glorious.  The judges loved him and sent him to choreography.

Megan Carter is a bigger dancer, and needed to work up courage to audition. I am so glad that she did.  Adam and Mia were moved to tears, and Adam thought that she threw all stereotypes out the window.  She made Mia happy to be a "woman of size."  Nigel told her that it would be hard to find jobs as a dancer, just because of the way of the business.  She's going to choreography.

In the choreography round, Wadi and Megan are cut.  Edward is one of 16 going to Vegas on Day 2 in NYC.

Next up?  Miami, with Jason Gilkinson and Sonja on the judging panel. 

Michael Petr is from the Czech Republic and is a ballroom dancer.  He's got something.  I love the way he moves, actually.  And he's on to Vegas.

Tyrell Rolle got a huge clip package and has beautiful lines.  He's got a great story (decided to pursue contemporary dance instead of hip hop and didn't sell drugs in a bad neighborhood).  Nigel thinks he phenomenal, and Sonya loved his strength. Jason loved every second of it, and he's going to Vegas.

Henry Rivera couldn't even get through his pre-audition interview without crying.  Wow.  He kept it marvelously together for his audition.  Nigel called him a brilliant dancer and called him inspirational.  Sonya loved his attention to detail.  Jason loved everything about it.  To Vegas with him, too.

Montage of family moments. Darla Kopylova auditioned with her father in a romantic dance, and it was a little creepy, though well danced.  Nigel thought it was weird that she danced it with her dad.  Sonya was also uncomfortable and thought it was awkward.  She's gone.

Ami Aguyar-Riley has a hot husband and an adorable 6-year old son.  She can also dance like crazy.  She dances in a way that makes me think Sonya is salivating.  Nigel appreciated that she was trying to do something different, but worried that it looked like aerobics at times.  He likes her intensity.  Sonya loves her aggressiveness.  She's through to choreography.

After choreography, Ami is through to Vegas.  9 others joining her.

Candace Craig is in a girl group called the Velvet Angels.  It's akin to the Spice Girls, and she's the sexy one.   Jason thinks that she dances almost too sexy, but she's a good dancer.  Sonya thought that her oversexualization kind of took away from her dancing.  Nigel thought she was rather burlesque, and she's through to choreography, but was advised to button up her busoms.

Rose Neptune thinks she is a better dancer than she is, and her partner (who is not auditioning) is useless. Jason loves that she loves dancing, but doesn't think this competition is for her.  Sonya thinks she's sweet, but not up to par with what she show needs.  She's out.

Montage of suckiness.  The judges were getting annoyed.

Final dancer of the day is B-Boy Jose Ruiz was inspired by Legacy being on the show.  I was utterly impressed with his head spin where he sped up halfway through.  Nigel thought it was a good audition.  Sonya loved his performance and his energy.  Jason liked him instantly. He's going to choreography.

In choreography, Candace is cut this time, but they urge her to get more training.  Jose's partnering wasn't brilliant, but he's through. 

Next week - LA and Chicago.

I'm so happy to see this show back!!!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Finale Alert: American Idol - 5.26.10

Why is Randy wearing a floral blouse?  And Simon appears to have lost half of his buttons before his final AI appearance...

Why have they dressed the finalists as students at Hogwarts?

Top 12 Group Sing.. School's Out for Summer.  Ah... Siobahn.  How I wanted her to be better.  She totally pulled off the Hogwart's outcast look.Creepy children's choir... then Alice Cooper.  That's pretty cool. 

Kris Allen performs and theirs something wrong with his mic at first.  Oh, lovely, AI.  I like Kris, and I want him to do well... but right now I am fast forwarding.

Cut to Simon passing out mints... and then a montage about Simon. 

Whoever thought that Siobahn would be best used singing with Aaron Kelly on a Bee Gees song was sorely mistaken.  Also fast forwarding through Michael singing precisely the kind of music that makes me happy he got voted off. 

Now... Dane Cook sings a song using Simon's greatest insults.  "Simon Said."  Love it.  Wanted more of it.

Lady's group sing of Beautiful.  It was sung live, which I appreciate... except for the few girls who couldn't quite sing in tune... and then they broke into Fighter, and this is a better use of Siobahn.  Katie is also sounding quite good.  Paige also didn't suck too badly, though she did go off tune a couple times.  I really like this song.  The video is awesome.  Makes me wonder when they are going to trot out the bonifide Christina... and... there she is.  With Princess Leia hair.   Interesting.  Fade to black (with blue lights on the strings) which she sings a song by herself.  She's amazing. I think this is one of her new songs.  Her sparkly leggings are distracting.    Oh, no... it's not leggings. She must have run out of time to finish getting dressed.  She's wearing sparkly leggings and a teddy.  Poor thing forgot her dress.  Good for her for going on with the show under such circumstances.  And singing so well at the same time.

Next - Ricky Gervais.  From satellite.  Funny, but didn't add too much.

Men's group sing, and it's kind of bad.  I Can't Go For That.  And I really can't.  And I really didn't miss Tim Urban.  Man Eater is better.  Would have been better without Tim.  And welcome to the stage, Hall & Oats!  Cool.

Toledo loves Crystal.  And she's singing Ironic, and I love it on her.  Now, add Alanis, with You Oughta Know.  Awesome. Anyone notice the lyric change?  "Would she go down with you to the theatre."  Silly censors.  They looked like they were having a good time on stage.  Alanis looked happy to be singing with Crystal.

Carrie Underwood's up next.  I left it on because the hubby likes her.

And the finalists get their personalized Fiestas.  Crystal's is way cooler.  Final Ford Commercial,with a montage of the other commercials.  They weren't good enough to create a montage with, sorry.  I do like Crystal and Lee's voices together, though...

Casey James on stage next, singing Poison's Every Rose Has It's Thorn. Good song for him.  Since you can't keep Brett Michaels down, he comes to join Casey on stage, and Casey switches to the electric guitar he had slung over his back. 

Next up?  Lee and a Medley about Chicago, his hometown.  It's kind of lame.  Hate to say it.  Oh, and Forgotten Matt Rogers is with Lee's hometown party.  Lee is De Wise choice?  Lame.

Another Simon montage. Awkward moments of Simon feeling himself up.

Welcome back, Pants on the Ground!  Go, General Larry Platt.  He's got some moves.  Love it. The mix was catchy.  I really love this guy.  And ... William Hung.  Awesome.  While the General did some pilates.  That was funny.

Another Simon montage.  When Paula met Simon.  And enter Paula.  She looks coherent and sane.  She's even able to speak. She made a joke about having Simon's lovechild.  Not a very funny joke, but a joke.  It was akin to a roast.  Ok, maybe she isn't coherent.  She was sounding a bit out of it by the end.  Montage of more Simon moments. 

Yay!  Kelly!  I was wondering if she would make an appearance!  Unfortunately, she's joined by two of my least favorite idols - Rueben and Fantasia.  Then, there's Carrie.  And Jordan.  She was good.  Oh, Taylor.  And Kris.  Ok, where's David Cook?  Wow.... blasts from the past.  Justin Guarini!  That's pretty cool.  Lots of former finalists.  And they sounded good.   Loved it.  That was fitting for Simon's last night.  Simon was brought up on stage, and got to say a couple words.

Time for the laser show.  And another Top 10 song, with a freshly shorn Janet Jackson.  Is that a dress, or a strange jumpsuit?  Whatever it was, she got to sing her new song.  I miss her hair.  And she sounds more like Michael than ever.  Cool.  After her new song, we get some Nasty Boys.  And Cool dancers. She shed her overdress and is in a jumpsuit now.  Or a body stocking.  Hey, that's Nathan from SYTYCD.  And Glee.  I think.  good for him.

At this point of the evening, my husband started wishing for actual results.

Obligingly, Seacrest introduced the montage of their journey.  And then they sang the theme song from Wonder Years. With Joe Cocker.  Sweet.

And local weather cut into it because we had a tornado warning.  Seriously, is that more important than Idol?  At least my satellite isn't messing up.

Finally, results.  Certified voting results brought out by a very much taller than Seacrest official dude.  Lee looked like he was about to cry before the envelope got opened.  And the winner is...


Crystal was better, but she'll still get an album.  And Lee will sound good on the radio.  Simon didn't look too pleased.  I think he just gave Lee a golf clap.  Lee was totally out of sorts.  And his music came on, and he was forced to sing, my dvr cut it off... because with a 2 hour show, how could you possibly expect them to end on time?


Thus ends another season of American Idol.  I wish Crystal had won, but I'm not mad about Lee winning.  I can't wait to hear their albums.

Goodbye, Simon.  It's been a pleasure blogging about you.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

American Idol: 5.25.10

Lee vs. Crystal.  Both really good.  Very different styles.  (Not as different as Kris Allen vs. Adam Lambert, of course, but ...)  Hopefully they won't have to sing a Craptacular Crowning song. 

They are at the Nokia.  Huge.  Wow, I didn't realize that both Crystal and Lee auditioned in Chicago (and they are both 24).  Neat.  Simon's last week!  And somehow, Randy still feels the stupid need to boo him.  *sigh*

The two finalists make their ways up to the stage, though a hand-slapping "good game" alley, with a lot of strange starts and stops.  That was awkward.  Three songs - their favorite from the season, Simon Fuller's Choice, and the Crowning Craptacular.  Crystal is going second.

01 & 03 & 05) Lee DeWyze (is it wrong that I wished that Lee would bring back the bagpiper?)  He's singing The Boxer.  I love this one.  He could totally release this song.  He connected well.  Randy thought it was a great way to start it off, even though it wasn't a very energetic performance.  Ellen said she couldn't be prouder if she birthed him herself.  Awesome.  Kara wants him to punch harder, but liked the connection and the believable song.  Simon wanted more passion and excitement.  He said it was a kiss on the cheek when he wanted a kiss on the lips.  Not from Lee, he specified. 

02 & 04 & 06) Crystal Bowersox - she found her first guitar in a closet when she was snooping for Christmas presents.  She's singing Me & Bobby McGee.  Awesome choice.  She sounds totally and perfectly Crystal.  Randy thought it was dope, dude.  Ellen finds her and her guitar totally compelling on stage.  Kara loved it and thinks she has fire in her belly.  Simon is reminded of when they fell in love with her, and thinks this is her back on her best.

01 & 03 & 05) Lee DeWyze - Simon Fuller chose Everybody Hurts. I think that Lee's voice sounds tight on this song.  I thought it was really one note and kind of bland. Randy felt it and thought it was a lot better.  I did not.  Ellen admitted he went off key a couple times, but was more concerned that he seemed to be holding back in his performance.  Kara loved that he was telling a story, though it wasn't brilliant vocally.  Simon loved the song choice, but thinks that Lee seems nervous.

02 & 04 & 06) Crystal Bowersox - Simon Fuller chose Black Velvet.  Nice.  The arrangement is very dramatic, almost Bond Theme-ish, and I like it.  She went off a little as she was making her way to the front of the stage, and she's sans guitar.  She was a little shaky throughout, but still very very good.  I say Crystal won this round.  Randy thinks that Mamma Sox is in it to win it.  Ellen was reeling at the wardrobe change, saying it was like a Cher concert, and called it fantastic.  Kara loved that she gave it her all.  Simon is almost allergic to the song, because he's heard it terribly done so many time, but loved what she did with the song.

01 & 03 & 05) Lee DeWyze - really? His first single is going to be a cover of Beautiful Day by U2.  Better than Inside Your Heaven, but I wish it was an original... I know, I'm hard to please.  This didn't thrill me.  It was good, but I wasn't blown away.  He seemed sharp to me.  Randy thought it started off a little interesting, but thought he got his groove at the big notes.  Ellen thought he was fully present for the song and loved it.  Kara thought he was swallowed up in the song.  I agree.  She thinks he has grown the most, has a very commercial voice, and deserves to be there.  Simon thinks that Lee is what the competition was designed for. 

02 & 04 & 06) Crystal Bowersox - Her potential crowning single?  Up To the Mountain.  Never heard of it.  She's on the stage sitting on a stool with her guitar.  It's beautiful.  Sure, there's a gospel choir... and I can't get behind the gospel choir, but it's subtle enough to not annoy me.  She doesn't seem to be channeling Sister Act.  The choir was more of an instrument than a backing vocal.  She's just singing with all of her heart.  I adore it.  She wins this round for me.  Hands down.  Randy thought this song was what the show is about, and thought it was one of the best performances, and one of her best songs, at the perfect moment.  Ellen loves how unique she is. She would buy Crystal's album, go see her on tour, or eat a salad Crystal made.  Kara loved how emotionally invested Crystal was, and called it amazing.  Crystal wanted to say something to Simon before his final critique ever, and thanked him, and wished him good luck in future endeavors.  He told her that it was the best song of the night, and thought it was outstanding.

Crystal ought to be winning this.  Seriously.  I won't be angry if Lee wins, but Crystal seriously deserves it after tonight.

Wait, what?  This season's boot song was sung by Will Young (original UK Idol winner)?  Totally thought it was a chick.  Anyhow, he's singing it live.  Nice.  He's good.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

American Idol: 5.19.10

Oh, how I will be fast forwarding through the performances tonight!

Interviews with the final 3 - it's hard on Idol, everyone!  They are working all the time!  They are pushed constantly!  And, they are all humble and didn't think they had a chance of winning, but they all want to win.  How insightful.  They are all super busy and don't have time to keep in touch with people.  Crystal's diabetes is under control.  Padding, padding, padding...

Casey's home visit - he's single. Girls are nuts for him.  He signed a dog.  He visited the drs who saved his life after a bad accident.

Fast forwarded through Dude I don't Recognize.

Crystal's home visit - she signed a guy's chest, who claimed he was going to get it tattooed on.  She was having a blast.  She got the key to Toledo.  She got to see her son.  She got to sing.  She got Crystal Bowersox Day.  She sang some of her original songs. Very nice.  Holy Toledo is a great song.  They played it in the background, and she was crying watching it.

Lee's home visit - he is mobbed, he threw the first pitch at a Cub's game.  He got to go home, and to his old paint shop job.  He vowed to try to win. He got super emotional singing The Boxer, and he sounded good when he wasn't crying.  He seemed totally energized by seeing his fans.

Down with Bieber!

Onward to results!  Lee is in the finals.  It's between Crystal and Casey, and with any justice, it'll be Crystal.  And, there is justice.  Casey gets a boot-off song, and he sings freaking Daughters.  I am fast forwarding.  I really truly hate this song.

Can't wait for the finale!  I'd be happy seeing either of these two win.  They are both super talented.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

American Idol: 5.18.10

Final 3!

01 & 04 & 07) Casey James - Personal Choice (Ok, It's Alright With Me, by Eric Hutchinson) This song choice is strange, and I am bored nearly from the start.  It also doesn't showcase enough of Casey's best talent - besides hair maintenance - his guitar work.  It seemed like a lazy performance with no hook.  Randy said it was an odd song choice - and was just ok, alright with him.  Ellen felt he didn't bring it to the stage, and he didn't blow them away.  Kara wished he had picked a more well known song.  Simon said this is arguably the most important night of his life, and this was like the salad before a hopefully more substantial dinner.  He thought it was a dud song choice, though he sounded good.

02 & 05 & 08) Crystal Bowersox - Personal Choice (Come to My Window, Melissa Etheridge)  She's got her harmonica on, and that's cool.  She starts it off with some harmonica, and in the beginning of the vocals, she seemed a little unsure, but she got into it very soon.  I thought that the tempo on the backing band seemed a little fast, but I' not sure.  The harmonica was cool, but it ended up reminding me of a strange retainer.  Crystal is just so so good.  Randy did not love the arrangement, but he loved the vocal.  He thought that the arrangement was fighting her a little (and I agree), but her vocals rose above it.  Ellen thought Melissa would be proud of her.  Kara thought that she would have liked it more if it had been acoustic, but still liked it.  Simon didn't think it was the most stunning thing ever, but he loves that she doesn't compromise herself as an artist, and thought it was a very honest performance.

03 & 06 & 09) Lee Dewyze - Personal Choice (Simple Man, by Leonard Skynard)  Excellent song, and strong start by Lee.  He looks more comfortable on stage tonight than he has in a long time.  I loved the whole thing - but the end seemed a little off.  I am not going to complain too much, though.  He was good.  Randy thought it was a great song choice, and could see him making a record with it.  He said that Lee looked like he feels like he could win it. Ellen said he started off as a scared little lamb, and now he is like a gazelle or an impala, something springy and wild.  Kara thought that he did the best job of the first round.  I'd have to agree.  Simon thought the song was absolutely on the money, and thinks he crushed the other two in round one.

01 & 04 & 07) Casey James - Judge's choice (Daughters, by John Mayer)  Oh, how I hate this song.  "Be good to your daughter, because I'm going to be banging her some day."  It creeps me out.  John Mayer creeps me out.  Casey's guitar work was good, but it was a dull and boring song.  The judges really must not want Casey to win this thing.  He's so much better when he's rocking out.  Randy patted his song choice on the back, and loved it.  Ellen thought that he would have daughters, mothers, and maybe some sons voting for him.  Kara liked that it showed his artistic vulnerable side, and also congratulated her song choice.  Simon thought it was a better song choice than before, but thought that the arrangement was not as strong, and culminated in a rather limp guitar solo.  Kara and Randy defended their song choice.

02 & 05 & 08) Crystal Bowersox - Judge's Choice (Maybe I'm Amazed, by Paul McCartney)  Ellen's choice, and I like it.  She is sitting on the stiairs in the beginning, and seemed to start off a little unsure, but around the middle, she got her groove and her Siobahn-worthy belting on, and I really liked it.  It was definitely different, and it definitely showed her range.  Randy, yo, hey hey, yo yo, thought it was a great song, great vocals, and declared that Crystal is in it to win it.  Ellen said that Crystal delivered exactly what she wanted to hear.  Kara thought that, although she didn't change it up much, she delivered and showed parts of her voice that they hadn't heard before.  Simon was initially surprised by the song choice, but thinks that Crystal showed that she has soul, and thinks that perhaps Crystal will be thanking Ellen for putting her in the finals next week.

03 & 06 & 09) Lee Dewyze - Judge's Choice (Halleluja, by Leonard Cohen/Jeff Buckley) I loved how he started it, all stripped and beautiful.  Then, the gospel back up singers marched in, and they just annoy me.  And he seemed to go off key in places.  The arrangement got a little heavy handed there, too.  Abundant timpani is no random bagpiper, that's for sure.  Randy, of course, thought that Lee threw down the gauntlet, and called it the biggest moment of his whole time on the show.  Lee thanked Simon for the song.  Ellen called it stunning.  Kara thinks that his growth this season is what the show is all about.  Simon thought he did a great job.

If there is any justice, it'll be a Crystal/Lee showdown next week.  I give the first round to Lee, and the second round to Crystal, by a hair.  I think my favorite of the night was Lee's first song.  I love that song, though.  I am against random gospel choirs, in robes or out.  Sorry.

What do you think?

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Finale Alert: Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains

I am really pleased with this Top 5 - except for wet noodle Colby.  They are tricky and sneaky and conniving and I kind of love it.

Back at camp after Tribal, Russell is pissed that Sandra kept the knowledge of her idol to herself.  He's grumpy.  And he is starting to distrust Parvati, thinking that she knew about the idol.

And Colby is feeling pretty pleased with the "disfunctional family" of villains.

Individual Immunity Challenge

Simple - stack dishes on top of a platform balanced on a ball, last to drop wins.  Probst calls out instructions of what kind of dish to stack.  I had written "what kind of fish to stack."  That would make it a much more interesting challenge.  As it is, it's all bowls, plates, and cups, of varying sizes.

Sandra is out first.  Jerri is out next.  Russell is (sadly) out next.  It's down to Parvati and Colby.  Colby is down, and Parvati wins.

Hopefully, they will stick together, and Colby will be out.

Back at camp, Colby gave his "Surrender" Speech, which he said was so good, he almost believed it himself.  Then, he had a very long pause during his confessional, saying he was not planning on quitting, and he said when the time was right, he made one last ditch attempt.

That's right.  He went to Russell.  And said "Why don't we get rid of Sandra tonight, and then it's the three of us against Parvati in the Immunity Challenge."  Good plan, actually.  Russell says he's going to decide at Tribal Council.

Tribal Council #1

At Tribal, Colby admitted that he went to Russell and wants to get rid of Sandra, and wishes that Sandra had won immunity, because then he could have tried to go after Parvati, because no one wants to go up against him.  Everyone admitted to being at least a little distrustful of all the others, and Colby just wants to shake up the dissent, to give himself a little bit of a chance.

Too little, too late.  Colby is gone.

The Villainous Final Four returns to camp, and Parvati said that Colby opened her eyes to the fact that she's a threat with the jury.  Next morning, Parvati went out for water, and Russell went to Jerri and told her that they have to win, or Parvati will take it all.  He admitted that he is at a crossroads, because his main alliance has been Parvati, but he's leaning towards sending her home.

Final Tree Mail - They will go to a ceremonial beach, perform the "Fallen Comrades Rights of Passage," which I always like, as a reminder of all those who came before, and then go on to the Final Immunity Challenge.

Sugar, Stephanie, Randy (who Jerri called a good friend to her... which might be a surprise to he of no friends), Cirie, Tom, Tyson (first "victim of his own stupidity"), James, Boston Rob (oh, if only he and Russell could have played nice), Coach (who they said "Namaste" to), Courtney, JT (second "victim of his own stupidity"), Amanda (her first time voted out of the game ever), Candace, Danielle, Rupert, and finally, Colby.  After collecting talismans, they tossed them onto a bonfire (Burning Man) and watched them burn.

Final Immunity Challenge

Survivor Maze, blindfolded, with symbols at guideposts with, in effect, braille markers, leading them towards necklaces.  They get all of them first, they get immunity.

Russell and Jerri are first to get necklaces, followed by Parvati.  Sandra ran into Parvati and tried to take her necklace off.  Sandra finally found her own first necklace, as Russell got his second.  Parvati found her second, then Jerri found her third, and Parvati found her third.  Sandra is chasing after Parvati instead of using guide posts.  She finally found her second necklace, and Russell got his third.  Parvati and Russell found their fourth necklaces and ran for the exit, chased by Jerri who found her fourth.  They were in a race for the exit.  Russell walked right past the pole with the necklace on it, and then found it, just as Jerri and Parvati found it.  It was within inches.  Jerri declared it a fun challenge.  Sandra, out of the maze with no hope of winning, said that it sucked.  Probst agreed that it was one of his most exciting finishes of any challenge ever.

Russell insisted that Probst put the Immunity Necklace on him.  Parvati wanted to chat with Russell.  Russell said that he plans to use Sandra to help him win the million, and tells her so.  She said "That's alright, I'll take the $100,000."  Parvati brings Russell aside, and tells him that she thinks Sandra will get a bunch of votes.  Russell tells her that his best strategic move is to keep Jerri and Sandra, and she said that's not true, because Sandra will win.  He says that he'll just ask what strategic moves she made to get there, and he'll win because he's better...

Because he doesn't yet know that that strategy failed him his first time around....

Tribal Council #2

Probst asked Jerri what changed at camp, and she said that she didn't do as much solo contemplation after the challenge.  Sandra said that her strategy was to go to the person with immunity, and admits that she told him that she couldn't win, and said that Russell keeps telling her that she can't win.  Parvati admitted to being nervous.  Jerri said that she pushed the point that Parvati is a huge threat.  Parvati said that if Russell wants to redeem himself as being loyal to one person from day one, he should go with her.  She said that she has protected him, and Russell snorted, and she said they'd been protecting each other, and he snorted and said that he has been protecting her.  She maintained that she never went against him, and that is the same as protecting him.

I think that Russell might actually gain some votes in the jury if he did keep Parvati, because certain people would respect that loyalty.

In the end, it's Jerri going home.  Didn't see that coming.  Neither did she, and as she hugged Russell goodbye, she said "I can't wait to hear this story later."

Jerri's boot off interview started with "Crap!" and she said that she is leaning towards Russell, because though he's crazy and hot headed, he makes decisions that make sense.  Except for tonight.  Ha.

Back at Camp, the final three rejoiced.  And the next morning, they rejoiced more when they say their beautiful feast.  And Russell was thrilled that he made it to Day 39 two times.  Interstingly, he said "Last season, I brought two people to the end who I thought I could beat and I didn't."  I thought he didn't know that he hadn't won?

Then, Russell asked Parvati who she would have voted for if he had voted her out, and she said she would have voted for Sandra.  As he went off on a walk, Sandra and Parvati giggled about how Russell doesn't know that he's up against two women... and then ...... Sandra burned Russell's hat!  She said "Screw it!  That's payback for everything he's done to me in this game."  Russell was desperate to find his hat when he got back, and she said that she didn't know what had happened to it.  He declared that he wasn't leaving without his hat.  Somehow, I think he will.

Final Tribal Council

Sandra was the first person to make her case to the jury.  She said that she get where she is by herself.  Russell said that in some cases, the game is one of luck, but not in his case.  He said he tried to play hard, and apologized if he offended anyone, but he played the game.  Parvati said that she didn't realize what a threat she was when she started playing the game, and said that she kept Russell, the Dragon, as her pet, instead of slaying him.  She thinks that she played the ultimate social game, the ultimate physical game, and the ultimate strategic game.  I don't think that Russell probably liked that statement.

Colby is up first, and he asked Russell if he really believed that there was no luck involved, and Russell said that he did, and Colby called him delusional.  He asked Parvati what strategic moves she made, except for in challenges.  Parvati brought up the play of her two idol giveaways.  That was pretty impressive.  He doesn't even address Sandra.

Coach called Parvati a Charmer and a Manipulator, and Russell a Schemer, and also the liar, and Sandra the coattail rider.  He called Russell a small man in stature and deed, and quoted "Only the penitent man shall pass," and wished that he had admitted that he crossed the line.  He called Sandra weak, and we all know that Coach believes Iron sharpens iron.  He called Parvati an unexpected warrior in challenges, and said that the day he trusted her was the day she helped vote him out.  He promised that he has not yet made up his mind.

Amanda asked how Sandra's strategy was better than the other two, and she admitted if her strategy was better, Russell wouldn't be there, but she could never get Heroes on her side.

Courtney is proud of her fellow villainesses.  She appreciated Parvati's physical strength, and wanted Sandra to explain her loyalty as a strength.  Sandra cemented Courtney's vote by saying how loyal she was to her.

JT addressed Russell.  He said that getting to the end of the game is only half of winning the game, and Russell said that he believes that the jury will respect his gameplay, especially in this jury full of previous players.  Parvati said that she was a huge threat from day one, but Sandra was not, because she only gave 50-60% in challenges.  Sandra said that she gave her all, but she isn't as strong.  She did say that she wished she could have thrown that idol back in JT's bag.  JT says that he is not out for vengeance.

Danielle wanted to know if Russell would change anything in his game after hearing what the jury has to say.  He said that he wouldn't change anything and he doesn't regret it, because he wouldn't have made it this far any other way, and he isn't going to tell her what she wants to hear.

Jerri asked for the story from Russell on how he came to the decision to boot her out.  He said that she hadn't hurt anyone in the jury and would get votes.  Parvati said it was because he was sure he would get her vote.  Jerri told Sandra that though she claims to watch backs, she didn't watch hers.

Candace said that lying is part of the game, but Russell told unnecessary dirty lies that hurt people.  She told Parvati that she was like a spouse in an abusive relationship, and she wanted her to get out, but she never did.  She is basing her vote on how they played the game, but also what they fell for.

Rupert is the antithesis of Russell, and said that Russell took the easy way out in being deceitful and conniving.  He wished he had listened to Sandra more, and called Russell a despicable human being.  He said that Parvati deserves to be in the final three, even though she aligned herself with a terrible person, because she fought with all her might.

Guess Jerri decided against voting for Russell - she voted Parvati.  Candace voted for Sandra.  Danielle of course voted Parvati, and Courtney gave her vote to Sandra, of course.  Colby's vote is not revealed, but Coach voted for Parvati, saying that King Arthur's journey has ended.  What?  Rupert is in love with Sandra and gave her his vote.

Off to New York with Probst and the votes!

And Russell's got a new hat.

At least he's got that.  Because he is not getting any votes.

Sandra wins.  And Parvati was right, Sandra did win when Russell brought her.

I don't think that Russell was winning in any case, though.  Poor Russell - always the Bridesmaid, never the Bride.


Sandra is the first person to ever win twice.  She said that makes her the queen (put on a crown), and said she is the best player ever.  Parvati said that she has played three times, played the most days, and is a challenge dominator. Russell said that Sandra is not a strong social player, not a strong physical player, and not a strong strategic player, and thinks her whole strategy was getting rid of him, which never happened, so her strategy failed and she was rewarded for it.  He said there is a flaw in the game, if she could win twice.  He wants America to have a percentage of votes, and Sandra said he still wouldn't have won, because the only people who like him are his family.  Probst said that Survivor has set rules, and the jury decides.  End of story.

He asked Tom what it means when Sandra has played twice and won twice, but has never won a challenge, and even Courtney has won a challenge.  Tom said that whoever wins deserves to win.  Russell said that he didn't play twice, he played once, for a long time... and brought out the laminated letter from JT and said if he can make a winner look like the dumbest player in history, that means he's good.

Sandra's husband is home from Afghanistan, for two weeks, and then he's heading back. wow.  Parvati that she had to win challenges, because no one believed she was playing as strongly.  She has the most days played, and is tied with Colby at individual immunity wins.  Russell figured that something had happened to his hat, but didn't get the strategy of burning it. Sandra said "It was dirty, it was funky, I threw it in the fire."  He said that burning his hat may have flustered him at Tribal Council, and said that Parvati should have won, and Probst said "That's a different game; that's called Russell Decides Who Wins Survivor."  Probst had to calm Russell down, when he started going off, and asked him if he is aware of the jury votes when he is playing, and Russell said he didn't care, and he makes it to the end.  He makes it to the end, but he never wins.

Probst asked Rob what would have happened if they had teamed up, and Rob said it would probably have gone pretty well.  He said that Russell plays the game, but doesn't play to win, and Russell said that Rob's never won, so... Rob said that he would go back and kick Russell's butt anytime, and Russell wants it to happen.  Probst says "Future Season - Rob vs. Russell"  I'd watch that.

Tyson looks like he's trying out for Jesus Christ, Superstar, and said that if his move had worked out, it would have been genius.  JT said that he felt odds were against him, so he played the odds, and didn't know about Russell's villainy when he trusted him. 

Dumbest Survivor Move Ever? It's a Poll.  JT asked if there was a monetary prize.  Probst said "No, you have to give money back."

The winner is ... JT.  Yes, yes... I would agree with that.

Wow. Rupert's toe that was broken?  It was taped to another toe.  That was also broken.  He still likes being called a hero.  Colby was brought back because he embodied Hero previously, and he knew right off that physically, things were different.  He said he had more fun watching it than playing it.  He missed the exploration parts of it, because they couldn't go in the water, and they couldn't go explore the forest, because they were quarantined. Really?

Amanda?  Lacking killer instinct in the game, and Probst asked if she is lacking that in life, too.  She said that it just happens, and she can't do it. 

Stephanie knew that her lack of relationships with other people in the game didn't bode well, and then she plugged her pizza restaurant.  Have to admire that.

Cirie thinks maybe the perception of her coming in was what doomed her.

Coach's insecure tears with Tyson in the night was up next.  He admitted that he came off as an arrogant ass in the first season he was on, and he just wanted to change perceptions of him.  He thinks he is a more humble, chivalrous and down to earth person now.

Rob and Amber's baby is in the audience.  She's adorable.  Of course, she's with Amber.

Rupert and Russell are the finalists for Fan Favorite.  Good vs. Evil.  Evil won.  Russell won Fan Favorite.  Good for him.

Probst was proud of Jerri's game this season, thinking that everything came together this season.  She said the first time she played, everyone hated her and wanted her gone. This time, they liked her too much to keep her around.

Danielle said that her breakdown at Tribal proved that she wasn't a villain.  And she said "Russell, Damn you."

Probst said that Courtney always seems to be having fun.  And Randy didn't seem to be having any fun, and he said that he didn't.  Poor Sugar, went out the the end of her season, and was out first this season.  And Candace got married.  Good for her.

Freaky Survivor Fun Morph - all winners together, create one super Survivor winner.  That was weird.  I would rather have heard more from people.

And next season?  They are off to Nicaragua.  Awesome.  Looks fun.  Can't wait to see it.  "And Something That Might Surprise Them All!"  - Rob and Russell?  Somehow, I think not.

Fantastic season.  Wish Russell had won.  Or Parvati.   I really didn't want Sandra to win... oh, well.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains - 5.13.10

Post Tribal, Parvati was stunned that Rupert didn't go home, and Rupert was gloating.  Jerri told Parvati that Russell threatened to vote her out if she didn't go with him.  Parvati didn't like his scare tactics, and doesn't trust him anymore.  She wants to get rid of Rupert and Colby first, then deal with Russell.  Russell ascertained that Danielle was going to go after Parvati, and she and Jerri wanted assurance that they were tight.

The next morning's tree mail brought them a Jungle Sprint Palm Pre.  There were videos from loved ones, who will be visiting and doing the challenge with them. 

Am I the only one who misses the Eat Gross Things Challenges?  I loved the season where the loved one had to eat gross things.

Parvati's dad, Jerri's sister (in from Germany), Russell's (very hot) wife, Colby's brother, and Rupert's wife.  And it's Rupert's anniversary.  Cool.  Last out was Sandra's uncle.

The challenge - they have to scoop water from the ocean with a pail, from which they will toss water to  their loved one, who will fill a bucket.  First to fill the bucket wins.  They get a plane trip to someplace where they will experience "the blow holes," and they get to save their memories on a brand new Palm Pre.  Colby is getting very frustrated with his brother, and Russell's wife is wringing water out of her hair.  Slick.  Colby was close to swearing at his brother.  Jerri and her sister won the reward!

They get to choose more people to go with them, and Jerri makes perhaps the stupidest decisions EVER and chooses neither Russell nor Rupert on his anniversary.  As she chose Parvati and then Sandra, Russell muttered how she had made a terrible mistake, and as he went back to camp with Rupert and Colby, I think something's brewing... Jerri... stupid.

The blowholes were pretty slick.  They got some plugs in for the Sprint Palm Pre, because what would a reality show be without some product placement?  They got food, too.  Sandra cried about the fact that her uncle is there because her mom died a year ago, and her husband is in Afghanistan.  Jerri realized that Russell was pissed of.  Parvati said that she wasn't worried.  Sandra said that the only way to get to the end for Russell was to get rid of the two guys.

Meanwhile, back at camp, Russell fumed.  He called the girls a bunch of unappreciative little bitches, and suggested a Final Three with Rupert and Colby.  They shook on it.  Rupert said "He is a villain, but he's the best villain I've got, and if I can bring the best villain with me, that guarantees me a win."  They scheme to get rid of Parvati, and Russell thinks that Jerri will go along with it.

When the women returned to camp, Jerri wanted to talk t Russell, but he and Colby were sleeping.  And Rupert was sawing.  And annoying everyone.  And making it so that no one could sleep.  Jerri thought he was completely inconsiderate, and wasn't sure if it was cockiness or stupidity.  She wants Rupert gone more than anything.  Of course, she couldn't sleep, so she went to talk to Russell, who also woke up.

Russell told her he wasn't mad, he just wanted to see his wife.  He said that all he wants is her with him in the finals.  He told her that he just doesn't want Parvati to sway her from him.  She declared there was no way of that happening.  He did not bring up his plan to vote out Parvati.

Immunity Challenge

With arms outstretched, they have to hold two poles against an overhead board, and balance it (poles are on the tops of their hands).  Pole falls, they are out.  Colby is out in 15 seconds.  Sandra is out next.  Gads!  Russell was out next, and looked stunned by it.  Jerri was out next.  It's Parvati and Rupert.  Rupert adjusted some, which was foolish, but it didn't fall.  Parvati was also close.  Rupert adjusted too much, and Parvati won immunity. Ruh roh.  What's Russell going to do now?

He is planning on flipping back to the girls and voting out Rupert.  Sandra wants Russell out badly.  Rupert told Russell that Sandra is pushing hard for him.  Russell went right to Sandra and said "Are you with me, or are you against me?"  She replied "I'm against you, Russell."  He claimed to be comfortable in the game and not worried.  Sandra told Rupert "loose lips sink ships."  Parvati wanted to know who invited Boston Rob back to the party with the "Are you with me or against me" talk.  Jerri said the camp has turned into crazy town.  As Parv and Sandra giggled together in the shelter, the guys and Jerri talked about getting rid of Sandra.  She said that she will bring the idol with her to Tribal, but she isn't worried and probably won't play it, even though it is the last day to play it.  That's just plain stupid.

Tribal Council

When Danielle came in for jury, Parvati mouthed "hot," and I'd have to agree.  She looks much better with make-up.  Sandra brought up the conversations with Rupert and Russell.  Probst was stunned to hear that Sandra flat out said she was against him (and Parv had a good Sandra immitation).  Parvati sees no point in switching it up, because if one Hero is in the final three, they'll get jury votes. Rupert said you have to be able to show that you are the Top Villain or the Top Hero, and Parvati says that she is a Hero on the inside.

Sandra voted for Rupert.  Rupert voted for Sandra.  All other votes were hidden.  Sandra played the idol, saying she would hate to go home with the idol in her bra.  Russell was stunned, and everyone else agreed that they have no clue she had it.  Rupert is voted out.  Colby looked pouty.  Not all the votes were read, so Sandra has no idea that Russell voted for her.   

Season Finale is on Sunday!

And... astoundingly, Russell did NOT vote for Sandra.  He voted for Rupert.  But, Rupert doesn't know that.  Very very interesting....

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

American Idol: 5.12.10

Fast forwarding through Fantasia, right off.  Wow, her hair is epically bad.  It's like she put a toupee on backwards.

Ford video - nothing to write home about, but looks like they had fun. 

Reminders of final 3 trips home in past seasons.  So, whoever gets cut tonight can suck it, because they won't be getting this reception.

Their families and friends are on the stage, two representatives each. 

Some results.  Casey is safe.  Mike had better be going home, that's all I have to say about that.

Time for Daughtry!  Yay!    He's awesome.

More results.  Lee is safe.  So, it's between Crystal and Mike.  This ought to be no contest.  But, it's AI.  You never know.

Fast forwarding through Bon Jovi.  I like them, but it's late, and I'm not feeling super well...

And, in the top 3 is... Crystal.  As it should be.

Michael is good, but so forgettable for me.  He's bound to get signed and make some forgettable albums.

Looking forward to the Top 3!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

American Idol: 5.11.10

Duets!  Neat!

Oh, the propaganda of how wonderful Jamie Foxx thinks he is... and he brought "Artist" t-shirts for everything.

01) & 05) Lee Dewyze (Kiss From a Rose)  Jamie did that annoying thing where he got right up in Lee's face during rehearsals.  I love this song, but I wonder if Lee's voice is too tight for it.  It wasn't my favorite of his.  It seemed flat and kind of forced.  I think he seemed rushed.  Randy thought Lee did nothing with the song and it was just ok.  He thought he should have chosen a more rocking song.  Ellen understands where Randy is coming from, but still thought Lee was great.  Kara (straight from a board room?) thought that the arrangement lost him along the way, but thought that he was still great.  Simon told Lee that there are so many brilliant movies and songs, but thought this was verging on karaoke, and thought he was trying too hard to sound like the original.  I would agree with Randy and Simon.  I like Lee, but I don't think that he had his chance to shine on this song.

02) & 06) Michael Lynche (I Will Be There)  This started off too low for Michael.  What a boring song, and he threw in some Michael Jackson-isms, too.  Back-up gospel choir... I can't handle it.  I predict I will forget about this by the end of the show.  As always, he's good, but I just find him so bland.  Randy wished he had chosen an R&B song, and thought it started rough.  Agreed.  Ellen thinks you can't go wrong with the classic sound of a gospel choir.  I disagree.  Ellen thinks he always sounds good, but thought it was predictable.  Kara wished for the goosebumps she was having during a couple of his performances.  She thought he could do this in his sleep.  Simon didn't understand Free Willy, and thought that Michael kind of did a good job, even though he didn't understand the song choice.

Lee & Crystal (Falling Slowly)  YAY!  I love this song.  Awesome movie, and perfect song for them.  Kris Allen sang this song all by himself and it was one of my favorite performances of his.  Lee and Crystal sound great together.  It is blatantly obvious how much better her voice is than his, but they work well together. It was beautifully done.  They performed looking at each other and it was wonderful.  Randy thought this was a great song by two great singers, and thought it was amazing and could be a hit right now.  Ellen said they are like the new Captain and Tenille.  Kara said it was one of her favorite moments of the entire season, and loved the interactions between them, and thought they brought out the best in each other.  Simon said that he wasn't sure he would call it a good song - he would call it a fantastic song.  Agreed.

03) & 07) Casey James (Mrs. Robinson)  I wanted Lee to sing this song.  Is that a ukele?  He's sitting on the side platform in the audience, and his vibrato works for this song.  I love it, kind of.  This is such a wonderful song.  I wanted him to open his eyes, because the squinting was annoying.  The arrangement was really cool.  Nice job.  Randy wanted to know the meaning of the song for him, and thought maybe he was singing it for Kara.  Man, let it go.  He thought it was ok, but thought it was cool and ok.  Ellen was disappointed that they didn't give him a big boy guitar, and liked what he did to the song.  Kara thought he was fighting to stay in the competition.  Simon didn't think it had the substance required at this point in the competition, and thought it was a little bit lazy, and thought he could have made more of an impact, but thinks that there have been some very strange song choices tonight, and said that was one of them.  Well, I liked it.  But, is Casey freshly fake tanned?

04) & 08) Crystal Bowersox (I'm Alright) She has stripped the song down a lot in the beginning, and then opened it up with some fun percussion.  I really liked it.  She showed her range of style in the song, and I think she had fun.  Yay for Crystal!  Yo, yo, Randy loved that she tried to switch the song up some, even though it wasn't his favorite.  Ellen thought the performance was Crystal-ized, and thinks that she made the song better.  Kara agreed with Ellen, and declared her an artist.  Simon said that after that performance, Crystal is back in the game.

Casey & Michael (Have You Ever Really Loved a Woman)  Good song, with some room for guitar beauty.  Some of it sounded quite lovely, but some of it missed the mark a bit...  Randy thought the guitar work was awesome, and thought that it worked out well.  Ellen said "As a matter of fact, yes I have loved a woman."  Kara declared the duets incredible tonight, better than any solos.  Simon agreed.

Best of the night?  Crystal.  Hands down.  And then Lee gets an honorable mention for the duet.  I also enjoyed Mrs. Robinson.  I think the final three should be Crystal, Lee, and Casey.  Pretty much in that order.

What do you think?

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains - 5.6.10

Two Immunity Challenges!  Two Tribals!  Things are getting thick!

Jerri is excited that Candace flipped, but says that she is now a threat, because someone who flips so easily can flip back.  Colby and Rupert are talking about how weak, pitiful, and self-centered Candace is.  Rupert declares that he and Colby are the only true heroes.

The next day, Rupert told Russell that he is a disgusting, dispicable human being for swearing on his kids' lives, and says that he doesn't give a damn about anyone but himself.  Russell said "Rupert, I'm a villain."  And then, he called him a dumb ass.  Nice.

Immunity Challenge #1

They will be standing barefoot on a small wooden platform, with a hand up tethered to a bucket.  Bucket falls, they lose.  And temptations will be offered, along with a twist.  Sandra and Russell are the first two to step out, without even seeing what their temptation is.  That was stupid.  They are sharing cookies and milk.  That was seriously stupid.  I love cookies as much as the next girl, but...

The next challenge is four donuts and an iced coffee.  They get 30 seconds to think about it before he gives them to Russell and Sandra.  Colby takes it. 

Next is pb&j, candy, chips, and milk.  Jerri, Candace, and Danielle share this one, leaving Parvati to battle it out against Rupert.  And Rupert fell (with no food temptation) and Parvati wins!  Good for her.

And the twist?  There is a clue to a hidden immunity idol at the camp.  "Salvation is hidden where two paths meet... etc..."  And, how long will it take Russell to find it?

The mad scramble was on to find the idol.  Wow.  Sandra found it.  Didn't expect that.  She put it back because she wanted to read the note later by herself.  Rupert put a rock in his pocket to make people think he has the idol.  Russell can spot an idol in a pocket from 40 yards, and says they just need to vote for Rupert.  Sandra said that's fine by her.  Jerri is gunning for Candace.  Rupert and Colby plan quietly to also vote for Candace.

Let's see what happens.

Tribal Council #1

Amanda is looking hot in the jury.  My brother will be pleased.  Everyone is sure that Rupert has the idol.  Rupert eyed Candace with pure hatred.  Votes go to Rupert and Candace.  Candace looked flabbergasted to be getting so many votes, and she is going home.  Amanda looked gleeful. 

Post tribal, Russell was mad because the votes went against Candace instead of Colby.  No one thinks that Rupert actually has the idol.  Russell does not like that Parvati holds equal control, and vows to take charge.

Immunity Challenge #2

They will race to find a peg in the sand that they will use to maneuver through a table maze.  Five move on. Next, they have to get up a ramp using four pegs as foot and handhold.  Three move on.  Last, there's a slide puzzle.

Rupert is first with his peg.  Parvati, Sandra, Danielle, and Russell find theirs, followed by Jerri.  Colby finally finds his. Rupert, Sandra, Russell, and Parvati move on, and Danielle takes the last spot.

In the second round, Russell got halfway up the wall with no pegs at all.  He's up first.  Rupert and Parvati move on, too.

Final round, and Russell won immunity.  Awesome.

Parvati wants to get rid of Rupert.  Russell thinks that it might be the time to vote off Parvati, because he doesn't want her in the final two.  He then went to tell Parvati that Danielle is gunning for her.  Russell didn't anticipate that Parvati would want to talk to Danielle about it.  Oops.  Russell went to the Heroes and told them to vote for Danielle.  Danielle and Parvati went to Jerri to tell her of Russell's plan.

Tribal Council #2

Rupert says that it's Russell and Parvati calling the shots.  Danielle says that the villains all agree with each other and play together, and Probst asked if it is just quiet around camp.  Jerri said Hell, No.  Then, the drama of the pitting of Danielle vs. Parvati against each other.  Parvati said that she thinks Russell is testing loyalty.  Danielle got very frustrated and started crying.  Danielle then said "I'm closer to Parvati than you think."  "Oh, really," said Russell.  That doesn't look good.  Vote time. 

And, Danielle is gone.  Wow.  Parv is mad.  Jerri threw her lot in with Russell that may bode well for her in the long run.

Next week, Russell tries to make a pact with Colby and Rupert as the other villains turn against him.  This could get interesting.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

American Idol: 5.5.10

Group Lip Synch - Medley of Sinatra tunes.  Crystal is in tails and got a nice solo in The Lady is a Tramp.  And she almost sounded like she was singing live.  Was she?  Then Aaron got to sing "When I was 17..."  It's actually a nice medley. 

Ford Music video time.  This one is actually kind of cute, with the boys in love with the car when Crystal thought it was her.  Funny, actually.

Little montage on what Tuesdays are like for the contestants... and the stand-in judges?  That's pretty much the most hilarious thing ever.  Seriously.

Lee joined Seacrest in the center of the stage to some rousing applause.  No surprise, he is safe.  Yay! 

Now, it's time for Lady Gaga!  I love Lady Gaga, so no fast forwarding through her!  She's singing Allejandro.  I bet I just spelled that wrong.  She threw in some Bad Romance at the beginning.  Her piano is totally bizarre, covered in what looks like trees made out of trashbags.  Some modern dance, some violin, and into Allejandro.  This is not my favorite Gaga song, but that doesn't mean it isn't good.  She's wearing netting and a bikini, and I think a full body fishnet.  The song is rather subdued for a Gaga song, and the chorus is catchy, but not as much as her other songs.  And part of the dance looked like an aerobics routine.  Still, love me some Gaga. I was Lady Gaga for Halloween, so... I'm biased.

For some padding, there's some more from HCJ.  He's funny.  He picked on their use of the (non)word pitchy.  I've heard rumors that people are vying for him as new judge next year, and I think he could be very very good.  And now, his performance.  He's singing "And I Love Her," and he's amazing.  Undeniably talented.

Hey, now!  The top 5 are singing some of HCJ's songs, as he accompanies.  Are they really singing, or is it more synching?  Is this the way we pay for last week's lack of group sing?

There was some ribbing between HCJ and Ellen, and it is funny. 

Back to results.  Crystal is up next and is sent to the far side of the stage.  Michael is sent to the near side of the stage.  Aaron joins Michael.  Casey joins Crystal.  Uh oh.  And Seacrest wants Lee to pick a safe group.  He declines.  Michael and Aaron are in the bottom 2, which means that Crystal is safe (yay!), and Casey will survive to bleat another day.

Aaron is going home.  He's sweet, but he was not going to win this thing, so it's good for him to go.

His boot off sing is Fly Me to the Moon.  Because HCJ is right there, ready to accompany him.  Goodbye, Aaron.

Anyone catch what next week's theme is?

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

American Idol: 5.4.10

Oooh, Crystal looks all sparkly and pretty tonight!  Fun.  And hello there, Harry Connick, Jr.  Nice to see you.

Kara finally doesn't look like she spent the previous night on a bender.  Simon's shirt is precariously low cut. It's a little awkward. 

I love Frank, so tonight could be fun.  And Harry Connick, Jr. wrote the arrangements for them.  That could be a very good idea. 

No random camera shots in the audience for HCJ, noooo, he got the grand entrance down the stairs.  He will be playing piano for the contestants, too.  Very nice. 

Sinatra's daughters, Nancy and Tina are in attendance.  And they gave a monogrammed hankie of Frank's to Simon.  Fun.  He couldn't wait to tear into it.

01) & 06)Aaron Kelly (Fly Me to the Moon) I think Aaron looks older with his hair in a normal person style instead of trying to be all spikey and contemporary.  I think this song is good for him, but it really shows his limits.  He voice is so young.  Because he is so young.  In the middle, he got somewhat better.  You know what?  He's looking like Wesley Crusher tonight.  Randy thought he did a good job.  Ellen thought he stripped any country out of his voice and did a really nice job.  Kara thought last week was stronger and wants more charisma.  Simon is star struck by his hankie, and said that Frank was the King of Cool, with swagger and machismo.  If Frank was a lion, Aaron was a mouse.  He admits that Aaron tries hard.

02) & 07) Casey James (Blue Skies) Hilariously, one of Casey's friends thought he could be swayed away from AI with $50 and a free dinner.  His friend apparently doesn't watch tv and has no idea about the whole AI thing.  Casey told him he was kind of busy.  Harry said that this is less about the lyrics for Casey than bringing the right vibe.  I thought the first notes were really rough, but when the band came in, he got better.  He's still sooooo bleating, and it is glaringly obvious without his grand guitar.  He pulled some weird faces, too.  Now, he had some nice long notes that the vibrato stayed out of for a good long time, and then snuck into at the end.  Not my favorite, but he did a serviceable job.  Yo, uhhhh, Randy thought it was his worst performance, pitchy from beginning to end.  He said when he was singing, the orchestra sounded out of key.  And you know that's bad.  Ellen made a crack about HCJ, and said that his performance felt very stiff, and he did not have the required swagger.  Kara thought he started loosening up by the end, and said it was nice to hear him hold notes... but what's this?  She said he sounds like a lamb and needs to work on his vibrato.  Is she just noticing that?  Simon said the good news was that the band was great, but the bad news was that Casey wasn't that great, and came across as embarrassed.  Casey admitted to being uncomfortable without his guitar, and HCJ said that he sang better in rehearsal, and admits that it's hard to hear on the stage.  "You killed it about two hours ago.  Not that that's going to help you."  Bwah ha ha.

03) & 08) Crystal Bowersox (Summer Wind) HCJ had no advice for Crystal, who made vague and enigmatic references to the song's meaning for her.  She looks beautiful.   Her voice sounds astounding.  Seriously.  This is a good style for her.  I love Crystal so so much.  Randy thought it was a great arrangement and one of her more subdued performances.  He thought it was sleepy.  Ellen thought at first, it was like she was swallowing words, but then she opened up and did a great job.  Ellen called her really impressive.  Kara says it's out of her element, but loved her phrasing and kind of liked it.  Simon loves the song, wasn't in love with the song choice for her in his mind.  He thought it was indulgent.  He said this is her second "ok" week.  I still loved it and will be voting for her.  Crystal said that it is a sweet love song and doesn't need to be sung big all the time, and doesn't think that she should sing big notes because she is on AI, it should be about the music.  Simon just wants her to present herself in the best possible way.

04) & 09) Michael Lynche (The Way You Look Tonight)  I think vocally, he is spot on.  I get annoyed by singers who lick their lips while they sing.  I predict that this will be yet another forgettable Michael performance.   He's good, but I just can't get excited about him.  He seems so schmaltzy.  Randy, yo, thought it was an unbelievable arrangement and declares that Michael is in it to win it.  Ellen thinks that he is the most comfortable on stage and loves his look and his sound.  Kara thought he found the drama in the song and did everything right, and didn't lose himself.  Simon thought that Michael had the best performance of the night so far, and felt that he listened and everyone worked together, and applauded the arrangement.  I like him better on this than in previous weeks, but will I remember him tomorrow?  Not sure.

05) & 10) Lee Dewyze (That's Life) HCJ says that his wife thinks Lee is cute, and after meeting him thinks that he's a new and improved version of himself.  That's funny.  Great song choice for Lee.  I think this is the most relaxed Lee has looked on stage, and he really has a great voice for this kind of music.  I think this might be my favorite Lee performance.  Well, except for the Epic Bagpipes.  That can't be topped.  But, great great job.  Randy also applauded the arrangement, and loved how Lee stayed true to himself.  Ellen was distracted at first by Harry's organ (bwah ha ha, go Ellen), and thinks that if this was the last night of performances, he would have won the whole thing.  Kara asked him if he believes he can win, and told him to go write it 100 times later tonight.  Simon applauded HCJ and thinks that he has brought Lee's personality and confidence out.  He loves that Lee gave it 110% and said it was by far the best of the night.

I would have to agree - Lee is on top tonight, followed by Crystal for me (I really loved her performance), with Michael next, and then Aaron and Casey.  One of them ought to go. I am left wishing that Siobahn had gotten her chance at this theme.  She could have killed it.

What do you think?