Diana Ross: Guest Judge
Terry: Did anyone else feel as though they were stuck in a 3 Stooges short? What a revoltin' development that was! Diana Ross was just another shill (unfortunately, as I expected).
Nerdia: Me too. She was C.O.L.D. just as I expected. What was that about them announcing her as the most successful female recording artist of all time? I think Madonna and Mariah would be surprised by that claim.
Coolia: I actually liked her better than I expected I would. I thought she gave some good, specific advice, even if she did make the kids call her Ms. Ross (Diana if you're nasty?).
Brandon Rogers - "Can’t Hurry Love"
Terry: Boring. He made the ultimate Idol error of forgetting his words.
Nerdia: No flair. Dull as dishwater. Phil Collins did a much better version. How many times can you say that? How could Randy say Brandon let us down? He’s never let us up!
Deb: His body movements are too slow for the song. I've finally been pushed to the other side of the "not sure if I like his voice" fence....the bad side. He needs to go back to being in the back. His days are numbered.
Coolia: I tuned in late and missed him, but it sounds like I didn't miss anything.
Melinda Doolittle – "Home" from The Wiz
Terry: I liked her take. Didn't blow me away as she has in the past. I LOVED that she was so genuinely touched by the audience's reaction to her performance. I don't think that was an act at all.
Nerdia: Her tears were touching. That will win her points. I can’t decide if she’s really an eek meek or just playing an expert card trick on us all. One thing I am sure of: she aint under 30 years old. She did make a boring song interesting. I always fast forward through this one in The Wiz.
Deb: Love this song...Home!!! I have to say Stephanie Mills did it MUCH better (not a fair comparison). Melinda continues to reign supreme over most of the other singers but there's still something a little "off" for me....can't put my finger on it.
Coolia: She's so professional and polished, and she seems to truly be a good person. But can she win it without a neck?
Chris Sligh – "Endless Love"
Terry: I applaud his guts (or stupidity) in taking such a risk. But, he failed miserably. He completely lost the innocence and unbridled emotion of the song.
Nerdia: You just can’t rock out this song. He droned it out. It takes a tender touch. How embarrassing to get voted off this way.
Deb: He has a realy nice voice, but the arrangement made a classic love song into a commercial jingle song. He unromanticized (word?) it. Gotta still vote for him, he stepped way outside the box....if only to step into a pile of steamy you-know-what.
Coolia: He needs to keep the glasses on. Removing them did not transform him into Superman. The Coldplay-esque arrangement left me, umm, cold.
Gina Glocksen – "Love Child"
Terry: Boring. For such an energetic (and emotional) song there was no energy emanating from her. Good vocals but no presence or real emotion.
Nerdia: I didn’t like her hair all in her face all the time. Not great – lackluster song choice made for ill-self-advised sentimental reasons.
Deb: Her low range start wasn't so good. She could however teach Brandon how to move on stage. Unfortunately, she's a rock and roll black sheep in a room full of R & B white sheeps. Her days are numbered.
Coolia: I wasn't crazy about the song, but I can't really think of a Diana song that would have suited her better. Not a good theme for the rock chick, but still a strong vocal.
Sanjaya Malakar – "Aint No Mountain High Enough"
Terry: He's a deer caught in the headlights when he sings. Or, he sleep sings. He projects as much charisma and emotion as a thimble. Maybe even less. Enough already. Go home!!!!
Nerdia: I’d rather watch Sanjaya’s sleepy performances than Brandon’s lazy ones. Or Haley’s.
Deb: OK his hair (the real star here) worked....just not with that awful sweater. This was awful on so many levels. Let this kid go America...PLEASE.
Coolia: Talkin' 'bout a Sanjaya revolution...and it sounds...like a whisper. I kind of enjoy Sanjaya even though he's way out of his league. He's a cute kid, and at least he doesn't have the nerdy arrogrance of past annoying Idol teen dreams Jon Stevens and Kevin Covais.
Haley Scarnato – "Missing You"
Terry: Bit of a mess. Began rough (pitchy, out of sync with the song) but she did end well (surprised me with her power in hitting those power notes and her strength in that power range). And then she followed Brandon's lead in forgetting the words. But, maybe people were too distracted by that
awful dress to notice that gaff. Her little display of emotion at receiving a backhanded compliment from Simon may save her.
Nerdia: I’m worried Haley may turn into our next Diana Degarmo and slip right through to the end. She’s really lackluster. Completely botched this song. Simon was mesmerized by the cleavage and legs. He isn’t helping us root her out.
Deb: She's very pretty. She pretty much whispered the beginning. Go Bigger, Girlfriend!!!!
Coolia: I actually didn't think this was bad, and I was surprised when Randy and Paula slammed her and happy that Simon gave her some praise. The emotional rollercoaster she experienced from flubbing her lines to listening to bad comments to the good comment from the one judge who matters made for exhilarating TV.
Phil Stacey – "Love & Affection"
Terry: Nosferatu's best yet. Perhaps tried a bit too hard and over-sang at points, but his best by far.
Nerdia: His only performance that I have liked so far.
Deb: Didn't care for the beginning. He does have a nice voice (but I keep getting flash backs of the whole bush baby thing). His voice is great when he goes "big". He made me wanna vote for him.
Coolia: I'll agree better than his usual. Still started rough. I just don't like the guy.
Lakisha Jones – "God Bless The Child"
Terry: Sheeeeee's baaaaaaack! Very well done. Very well, indeed!
Nerdia: Her only performance I’ve hated so far. I like how she thinks through elements like Mic stand or no mic stand (she made the wrong choice: Ross was right…this song is about “come to me”) but she sang the song too sassy and embellished. This song needs to be sung slowly and with care because it is saying so much more than the face value of its words. We need time to let the words sink in. We need simple emphasis on important lines like “but don’t take too much” which was completely run over by Lakisha. Even Cher did better with this one. For a real pro: see Judy Garland do it.
Deb: Wow, fantastic performance. Some serious voice control. Very very good and my favorite of the night!!! Oddly though I don't feel compelled to vote. Because she doesn't need me to??
Coolia: This was my favorite performance of the night. I really love watching Lakisha.
Blake Lewis – "Keep Me Hangin On"
Terry: I liked the modern arrangement in terms of the music but the presentation and singing was a bit boring. Very disappointing. I expected much better from him.
Nerdia: I thought the arrangement was very creative.
Deb: Ahhhhh he's an MJ fan. That's explains SO much about how he moved on stage. I think I even saw some mini-moonwalking going on. I didn't really like this. Between the song, the stage, the lights and the music I lost Blake.
Coolia: Blake has fun, and I have fun watching him. Blake's voice is my favorite. It may not have the power of Melinda or Lakisha but it has real listenability and smoothness.
Stephanie Edwards – "Love Hangover"
Terry: She sticks with her strength in the sultry jazz style just as Chris Daughtry stuck with his grunge rock style. And, she's very good at it. I just continue to question whether America will embrace her chosen style and obvious strength.
Nerdia: Like Queen-nite last year and "The Show Must Go On"….don’t pick a song with many movements in it….the audience will feel thwarted. She never let this rip and I felt like I was teased and then abandoned before my orgasm.
Deb: She's got to try to shine like Melinda and Lakisha. She looks great (again kudos to the stylists). Unfortunately, another boring song choice. Overall not bad at all, but not shiny like the other two divas.....just sort of glowed is all.
Coolia: I think she could go home because of this performance. Not that it was horrible, but there are too many similar divas (Melinda, Lakisha, Jordan) who are vying for her voting constituency and she's the weakest tonight.
Chris Richardson – "The Boss"
Terry: The song was too big for his voice, but he showed good stage presence. He has good range but no power and this song calls for some power to truly be affective.
Nerdia: My FAVORITE Diana Ross song!! He stank it up! You need your own attitude to stand up to this ditty!
Deb: He seems a little stiff up on that big ole stage. I think he should have picked a slower song to showcase his vocals. Mediocre in my book.
Coolia: It's nice to see someone besides Blake put some energy into their performance. He ran around like Taylor did last year, but it wasn't as endearing.
Jordin Sparks – "If We Hold On Together"
Terry: She just told Melinda and Lakisha to watch their backs.
Nerdia: She sang well, but I was bored. The Land Before Time? That had music in it?
Deb: Wow she looks and sounds GREAT! She needed to open up a bit and show her personal side. Fantastic vocals. She looks stunning. Definitely shouldn't go home, but there are at least 2 too many
divas dividing votes. I have to vote!!!!
Coolia: Her best vocal yet, but she still leaves me a bit cold.
Terry: This was such a bad night of performances that it's very hard to choose who will be going home. My choice: Brandon.
Nerdia: I’m ambivalent about tonight just as I am ambivalent about Diana Ross. Love her songs and performances. Think she’s a big shew. So I wasn’t under or overwhelmed by the show. I did think Brandon should go home but then dialidol.com made me second guess that angle: I picked Stephanie to go.
Deb: Bring on the quadruple boots and lets get this over with. There were only 3 truly "good" ones last night. 1 (or 2) very bad ones and all the rest bunched right in the middle somewhere.
Coolia: Like Nerdia, I picked Stephanie to go on a combination of dialidol and my instincts, but the rest of my instincts said pick Brandon and he was the one who got the boot. The timing is okay for him - he can probably find some diva's summer tour and get on board.