Season 2: And I Am Telling You I'm Not Going

Last season, the genius that is King Tut Simon failed to prevent the evil that is Kelly Cluckson from being unleashed on the general public. That puerile Baccharachian A Moment Like This and Justin Gurgling's horrid hair establish this show as the evil establishment that it is, the Evil That Will Destroy Music As We Know It. Then again, any show with Charmaine Miss Paula and Randy Randy - The Evil Sweetpeas - as judges can't be anything but evil.

And now Cluckson and Gurgling are making that movie... oh lord.

We're back, this time with that horrible guy with the cheesiest Ricky Martin stubble and worse fashion sense ever, Ryan Sleazebag, losing that pathetic partner of his, whathisname, Brainless Dunkedvermin, but gaining a new partner, American Idol 1 reject Kristin Dolt (AKA The Teeth That Ate Belgium). More freaks, more screechers, and more people to prove why karaoke is the most evil thing man - or Japanese - has ever invented ever.

Welcome to American Idol 2. Drum roll, please.

How's that for my recap of last season? It sure beats the tedious one Sleazebag does on this show, he of the body-hugging shirts and cheesy leather pants, surrounded by a crowd of sickening beautiful young people right out of a Neutrogena advertisement. We see Randy Randy saying that this time, he wants to look out for people with vocal talent. Oh please, this guy eats six bowls of artifice for his pre-breakfast snack. Charmaine Miss Paula "I'll Take Vapid For $100, Alex" Abdul says that she wants to look for somebody who can find the inner voice within without compromising one's real self. In short, Paula's looking for the anti-Paula. No words from King Tut. He's too cool for fake banalities. Sleazebag promises that the season will see the judges being tougher on the poor misguided kiddies that walk onto the Audition Guillotine. He probably means that Paula will skip "amazing" and "beautiful" in her usual repertoire of canned compliments. Randy Randy will probably eat one less Big Mac so that he can look mean. King Tut... well, that means he'll probably rack up the bleepings on his bedpost.

All these tediousness are interspersed with scenes of Britney and Justin wannabes out there screaming, screeching, wailing, and generally selling their souls for a brief fifteen seconds of fame.

Finally, we get down to business.

Day one, New York. How many freaks can one find in New York? We'll find out soon enough.

Sleazebag, the walking hair gel, stands at the top of a building and comments that he sees talent in New York wherever he goes. Look! He sees talent in that building! And in that building. This can only mean one thing - Talent is taking a wide berth from the building where the auditions are being, that's why Talent is always at least ten streets away.

We see mercifully brief glimpses of three genetic rejects that failed to make the cut. There is a truly horrific warthog-like dude named Chriss, a male version of Avril Lavinge who had read the Bible of Androgyny one time too many named Brad. Brad doesn't take King Tut's post-aural rejection well - he tells the King that where he came from, people brush their teeth twice a day. Yeah, but what good is clean teeth when one stinks in every other way? Back to the reject bin, dude, and take that Avril tie with you.

Hubby perks up when two twin sisters, Prisoners 3722 and 3723, walk into the room. Earlier, they are shown doing a dance best described as "Twin Sisters Gettin' It On". Do they have names? I don't think their future fans of their adult movies will care. I mean, does anyone really know what the Olsen twins' names are? Anyway, they look like Leelee Sobieski's Mini-Me cloned twice. They sing Alicia Keys' Fallin', and they do it well, even if they sound a little like twitting canaries sometimes. The Evil Sweetpeas are naturally brimming with enthusiasm, and King Tut, when he shakes off those incestous twin sisters fantasies in his lascivious mind, grudgingly lets them go to Hollywood. Because we all know the Holy Casting Couch in Hollywood is where all that is good and holy awaits.

The twins leave the Audition Guillotine, their heads intact for superstardom or dumper, and hug the Teeth That Ate Belgium. So this is what the Teeth will do? Hug contestants and smile at the camera? Talk about easy money. Where do I sign up?

Sleazebag is cruising the hall filled with hopeful freaks, and the freak magnet that he is, he ends up talking to this really terrifying guy named Nathaniel. Nathaniel is the Poster Boy for the Sexually Polymorphic, he is wearing a pair of jeans that are cut and split at the sides, and he is wearing a pair of thongs underneath them. I don't know about you or me, but any queen desperate enough to show some skin to Randy Randy, Jabba the Hut's bastard son, or King Tut is really in need of some medication ASAP.

And by golly gee, Nathaniel is horrible. I don't know if it's that thong floss squeezing his bum or he is just born without a drop of talent in his lil' thong line, but gawd! And this guy is 17? He'll never even make the cut in a RuPaul lookalike contest. He brutally massacres My Girl into an anthem for talent-free overmascaraed ugly drag queens everywhere, his voice sounding as if he has somehow swallowed his oversized nose.

Randy Randy lifts the Hand Of Doom three seconds into this freakshow - three seconds too long, really - and silence from the three judges for one second, then two, before Charmaine Miss Paula bursts into laughter. King Tut proclaims in his sexy evil voice that he has heard better singers outside the subway. Nate whines that he has tried really hard to get here, and King Tut ruthlessly cuts him down, saying that well, those subway screechers try hard too. Nate and he get into an argument, with "You're terrible!" flying around, until Randy Randy steps in to break this delightful bitchfest. Charmaine Miss Paula tries to do the sweetcakes by telling Nate that well, he did sing off-key throughout the entire song (maybe Nate should have sung Straight Up instead) but come on, King Tut, Miss Paula is sure that Nate doesn't believe that he is that bad. (Remember, Miss Paula always says that if one believes in oneself, one will zzzzzzzzzzz.) King Tut just has to continue his rant, saying that those subway singers sing through rain and sun for days, but they aren't superstars, so why the hell should Nate believe he is entitled to be one? Nate finally snaps and rails at them that they don't have to be mean and rip apart no-hopers like him. Sorry, dude, but you are fecking pathetic, if you sing in the subway, even old ladies will beat you to shut you up. Nate calls Randy Randy fat, Miss Paula a played-out has-been, and King Tut a *bleep*. (I believe it is "asshole".) Simon has the last word as Nate the Drama Queen stomps out of the Audition Guillotine: "He takes it pretty well!" The Evil Sweetpeas crack up. They are so King Tut's bitches.

Now back in the hall of talentless warblers, where Sleazebag is interviewing two girls whom he announces misleadingly that they share the same boyfriend. Actually, it's more of Light Hair dating Dark Hair's ex - or is it the other way around? Anyway, Sleazebag is trying to play up the angle that these gals are here to catfight. No luck, as the gals deny this. Sleazebag is such a tool.

Light Hair, looking like a Britney wannabe, struts into the Audition Guillotine. "Memories..." she begins, and to my pleasant surprise, it's not that bad on my ears. All three judges agree that she has a nice voice. She's going to Hollywood.

Dark Hair's next. "My love... aaah!" She flubs as she forgets her lyrics. "Aaah! Can I start again?" But Sleazebag and Light Hair eavesdrop on the door, Dark Hair breaks into a steady and pleasant performance. The King announces that he is bored. I bet this is what casting folks say when they expect the auditioning gal or guy to drop on her or his knees and take care of the matter. But Dark Hair is still mercifully untainted by the sleazebags of Hollywood. Charmaine Miss Paula defends Dark Hair by telling Simon that he will be bored even if Miss Paula is standing naked in the room. Which he will, and so will we, actually. But Dark Hair is also going to Hollywood.

Then comes in a tall guy named Christopher with curly mop top and proceeds to cheerfully murders All Or Nothing. Okay, it really isn't that bad to my ears, but to the judges, it is. King Tut declares that if Chris is to sing and win this show, he will kill the American recording industry. Oh, this is so rich, it is as if King Tut's producing American Idol is doing wonders for the industry! Kelly Cluckson, anybody? How about some diarrhea-pill soundalike Avril Lavinge on the side? And to think I wonder why I haven't turned on the radio in three months now. Chris protests, and King Tut says haughtily that Chris may just be the worst singer in New York. Chris and he ends up daring each other than Chris will bring a singer worse than him to King Tut, same time, tomorrow.

Sleazebag and Chris go around NY at night hunting for people, but so far all they found was an operatic hero, a soulful dude, and people who sing but wisely didn't audition for American Ebola 2. Hey, where's that Nate? Now that's a horrible idiot - why not just grab him and bring him to King Tut?

Julia sings a Toni Braxton tune (Unbreak My Heart) - her high notes are bit shaky, but she deservedly gets a place in Hollywood. She hugs the Evil Sweetpeas and shakes King Tut's hand, telling him that he scares the *bleep* out of her.

You'd think a perversion of a show like American Idol 2, a show that pushes forth a cheap Carson Daly knockoff and an Amanda Peet clone with bigger teeth as hunk and babe, will know better than to censor expletives. Especially when the show is an expletive in the first place.

The first day's audition has ended. We see, however, Chris singing under a street lamp, unable to find a singer worse than he, and Sleazebag making a gleeful smirky face as he flees from Chris.

Night has fallen, and New York has survived day one of American Idol 2.

Hello, morning. It's day two in New York now. We hear Sleazebag commenting whether today will see the guys performing better than the gals.

We then pan to Danny who does a really nice rendition of Sinatra's Fly Me To The Moon. He's a deserved shoo-in.

Then comes this gal in school uniform. She's Cynthia. She looks and sounds as if she's high on something. Maybe she just ran away from the juvvie detention center, I don't know. She swoons and says that she has been wanting to be on this show and to meet King Tut, oh King Tut, oh! Then she breaks into Pink's Don't Let Me Get Me, and I say, gal, don't let you get you, and that's the truth. She sings as if her nostrils are blocked permanently and any stage personality she displays is one where the crazy gal jumps around before overdosing.

"I'm good!" she insists. "I won't be horrible."

"It's not horrible," King Tut assures her. "It's absolutely ghastly."

She begs to be allowed to sing one more time.

"What's the point?" King Tut asks her.

Charmaine Miss Paula asks her to look into her soul to see if she really wants to sing. Er, whatever Cynthia's on, Paula's on double dose. Randy Randy flatly rejects Cynthia.

King Tut wearily says that he cannot take any more of this nonsense.

I don't blame him as we are shown to some more, er, colorful freaks that auditioned. There is a painfully nasal dude, a dancing male queen, and a fur-coated walking throat cancer. They are all case studies for the Tragedy That Is The Man.

The judges walk down into the hall of talentfree warblers for what King Tut calls a "prep talk". As far as I can see, this consists of King Tut calling all of them boring and idiotic (Tut is so hot!) while Miss Paula tells them that they seem to have lost their mojo. Randy Randy takes up the prep session, and the camera quickly looks for better things to focus on.

Say, is it me or Miss Paula is a little less Charmaine-ly this season? She is actually pretty nasty to Nate, and that's a first from her... I think. Hmm. (Then again, she's probably jealous because King Tut was very noticeably staring at the amount of leg Nate was displaying during his self-inflicted humiliation.)

Then comes one guy, looking smart, singing a James Ingram song pretty well. King Tut and Miss Paula are all googly and lavish with praises, but Randy Randy is hesitant. He doesn't think the guy has personality. Still, two have spoken, Randy Randy's opinion does little to stop the guy from going to Hollywood. Miss Paula argues with Randy Randy though, and in the end, King Tut settles the matter by agreeing with Miss Paula, but only because he wants to see how this guy will fit in in the end.

Just when I thought New York is filled with really sad losers, comes Frenchie Davis. She is big-boned, adorably so, but girl, that yellow and orange thing just has to go, you look like a bouncing orange. Sleazebag's voiceover suggests that she may not have a choice with the image-conscious Randy Randy. No matter. This gal says that her friends have come together and pooled $250 so that she can come here and show her stuff, and I say it's $250 well spent as Frenchie bursts into a superb performance. Miss Paula even makes a show of how the hairs on her arm are standing up. In the end, the Evil Sweetpeas give her a standing ovation, while King Tut deliberately crosses his arms and looks bored. He's so aware of the camera and his image as a nasty queen, he can get irritating to watch at moments like this. Just stand up and kiss her toes, you silly fool!

Then he smiles. Frenchie is going to Hollywood. Yes! Yes! Yes!

I love King Tut all over again.

Thirty-four people are selected from New York. Now we are off to Miami.

Ah, Miami. As we leave New York's humiliation behind, we see the predictable scenes of gals in hoochie bikinis and Sleazebag wearing a dark violet shirt and a bead necklace that screams "I was making out with Ricky Martin last night and dude, it was so hot!" Some gal says that she is working on not sleeping. Try watching this show. Another says Miami is like a party with 6,000 friends. So many hopeful wannabes, so little space for lil' Britney Mini-me's out there. The trail of blood may be worse than that in New York. Who knows? Let's see.

First, the montage of some of the more hysterical rejects: a dead-eyed husky-voiced walking taxidermy accident, a shaky-voiced humanoid from Planet Eeek, and the junkie that mistook The Star Spangled Banner for a line of powder.

Then comes Terra. She has Mariah Carey's Vision Of Love-era curly hairdo. She whips out the photo of her and Mariah Carey together and declares that she is Mariah's biggest fan. Then she proceeds to sing, or rather, does a perfect take of a sea cow's mating call. When Miss Paula is trying to hold back laughter, you know you are just slightly better tone-deaf sea lions when it comes to vocal prowess. "I'm speechless," Miss Paula says - she probably is trying to search her personal dictionary of Positivity BS Garbage for an euphemism for "Girl, you should do us all a favor and wire-tape your mouth shut!"

King Tut has no such handicap. He tells Terra that the only similarity she and Mariah have is that hair. "You can't sing!"

Terra goes into a hissy fit. She has a vocal couch, you know, and her name is Yvette. Yvette who?

"Get a refund," King Tut tells her off.

Backstage, Terra calls King Tut a jerk. She can sing, you know, she is, like, just having a bad day, so see you all in hell, losers!

Hmm, she and Mariah will get along just fine, I say.

Then comes Heidi. She looks just like the sister to the Leelee Sobieski Mini-Me Twin Sisters back in New York. She wears a tacky-looking one-shouldered wrap dress and a red plastic-looking skirt. She's Jessica Simpson's cheaper sister. She sings with her eyes half-lidded. Her voice is pleasant, but Miss Paula seems to be on the verge of orgasm. King Tut crosses his arms again. "Very interesting," he comments, and asks her not to be like Christina Aguilera, whom King Tut says has decided to be a role model for sluts. Yeah, King Tut prefers good gals to sluts, right. What a freaking hypocrite.

Anyway, Heidi goes to Hollywood. I give her ten minutes before King Tut asks her to wear Christina's crotchless chaps in a personal audition.

Then comes Natalie. She's 16, and she sounds just like Sarah McLachlan as she sings - golly gee - McLachlan's Angel. Miss Paula loves her crystal clear voice. King Tut says that Natalie is one of the few people who could make that song interesting. Randy Randy is all for Natalie selling her soul in Hollywood, but Miss Paula is not sure if Natalie is ready for it. She says no. But King Tut says yes, she's going. Poor Nat. She'll never enjoy being 17, not in this show, not in this town.

Back in the Miami hall of talentless warblers, the camera focuses on some of the vilest species of human beings on earth: stage moms. Prisoner 10102's stage mom is especially terrifying to look at, with her wide-eyed look of desperation and avarice and her butch hairstyle from spiky hell and all. Stage moms - shudder.

Then finally comes a guy. He's Sean. He's an Asian American who wants to do R&B, and he makes a great deal about wanting to represent his race. I don't like people who comes onto pathetic shows like this one and make it like some sort of social affirmative action statement. Positive affirmation? Hah! Try infinite humiliation. His song is appropriately as melodramatic as his declaration of noble sentiments, and while the Evil Sweetpeas love his voice, King Tut remarks that Sean isn't suited to R&B. Still, he too is signing Sean's devil contract to Hollywood.

Backstage, Sleazebag asks Sean if he knows kung-fu. Because we all know all Asian guys know kung-fu. Fecking idiot Sleazebag - hey, he's blond and he wears ugly clothes, can he do a Freddie Prinze, Jr impersonation? Idiot.

And then Sleazebag asks Sean to, believe it or not, rub manboobs in a thump-thump manly show of bonding, and they do it twice, the second time a threesome of manboob crashing involving Sean's friend. Sleazebag is so enjoying it, I wonder if Ricky Martin, Sleazebag's Sugar Daddy, will get jealous. "How could you betray me, Ryan! Your bon-bons are to be shaken only with me!"

The fact that Sleazebag is wearing a really gay T-shirt with the word "Triomphe" must be some joke from the wardrobe department. Thanks, Wardrobe People!

Sleazebag is back to that ugly dark violet shirt and now he is blabbing about how they are going to the beach 24/7... yawn.

Back to the show.

You know the Iglesias brothers? There's Julio Jr and there's Enrique, right? But guess what? The secret, er, "mentally handicapped" brother, Edgar, that they kept locked up in some walled room in the Iglesias mansion, has suddenly escaped and he is now on American Idol 2. Yes. "Oh my God!" is right. Looking like an android made out of solidified grease that is now slowly melting to give him an oily luminiscence, he declares that he has been dreaming of being a star even before he was born. Then he sings.

Oh my God. Did I say that Nate was awful? This... this... Enrique Iglesias' Escape is given the howler monkey running amok remix by Edgar's impressively unrestrained off-key maniacal howling prowess. "Aiyeeeee-yaiiiiii-yaeeeeeee!" he howls in a glee only he is feeling as the three judges and audiences everywhere are shocked speechless as the missing link between howler monkeys and man is finally discovered - right here on this show! That he even falls onto his knees, apparently overcome by some divine passion of his unholy song only he can sense, looking drained as if he has just experienced some revelation - holy coppola.

"He must be a mole sent in by the show producers!" hubby announces when he can stop laughing. "I don't think anybody can be this bad."

After inflicting aural-vasectomy on stray alley cats all over Miami, Edgar seems shocked and hurt when Randy Randy lifts the Hand Of Doom and asks him never to sing ever again. He insists that singing is really his thing. Miss Paula, always the diplomat, says that Edgar is very "committed". Hah, he should be committed alright, if you ask me. But Edgar wants to hear King Tut's opinion. After all, he says that "All this is up to you!", a snide cut on Randy Randy and Miss Paula's judging if there ever is one. King Tut predictably gives him the two thumbs down, but he says he still likes King Tut.

As he leaves the Audition Guillotine, he tells everyone he is going to see them all in LA.

A Victoria is next. "Ah... ah... AHH!" She wastes no time jumping into off-key territory. "I may need some medication after this," Randy Randy comments.

At this point, hubby wonders aloud if we are going to be watching freaks all day long. This show seems to be interminable already. What happened to people who can sing?

Some guy named Beecher walks in, dances like Usher, sings Shai's If I Ever, and wins the approval of King Tut and Miss Paula. Randy Randy finds the vocals a bit off though, upon which King Tut pounces on him and tells him that Beecher has style and charisma to make up for his lack of vocal range. "This is not Vocal Training Idol," he tells Randy Randy while Miss Paula adds weakly that the guy sang the second verse within key. Still, Miss Paula and King Tut once again band to override Randy Randy and set this guy to his way to Hollywood.

Edgar tries to sneak back into the Audition Guillotine, telling everybody that the judges have asked him for another audition, but he is sent off. He still tells everyone that he will meet them in LA. Maybe one day he will find someone who finds him funny, because I certainly don't. Freak.

Twenty eight lucky ones from Miami. Now we're off to Texas. I hope the Texan people sing better than Dubya is at his elocution.

Texas. Sleazebag is wearing thicker clothes, because the weather is colder in Texas. The people look duller and uglier than the ones in Miami too. Sleazebag, commenting on the humiliating flop that are the men in this show so far, hopes that they will find some real men in Texas. Or maybe that's just his personal desire, hoping for some illicit nookie while he's away from his darling Ricky. Then again, I wonder if Sleazebag will recognize a real man if said real man comes up and kicks him in the balls.

We meet Dana who has brought twenty-seven family members (many holding makeshift banners saying "I love Dana") to support her. I guess when one walks down the guillotine path, it pays to have many people cheering for him or her. But she looks good, confident, and dresses very nicely without looking dowdy or too prim. She also has a great voice, but not good enough for King Tut. The Evil Sweetpeas override his opinion, and Dana is on her way to Hollywood. That is, if she can break free of the zillion family members and friends that mob her along the way and hug her so tight I was afraid she will be asphyxiated before she even leaves the building.

Sleazebag interviews a guy named Coffey - coffee, anyone? - and apparently Coffee's wife is about two hour's away from popping out their brat. How nice to wife to let husband go on this show when she is about to get her womanly parts stretched for a few year's period of feeding and changing.

Comes Kimberly. She also looks like that creepy DJ gal from Full House grown up. She has a voice that she puts to good use singing Superstition. She's pretty good, and she predictably goes home to pack her bags for Hollywood. That outfit though needs work. Nothing screams "Bovine White Trash" like that tacky thing she had on.

In walks Harry Potter and a girl in black latex who imagines she is a Christmas tree. Mercifully we are spared of their auditions.

Cedric walks in in a full blinding yellow pimp suit. That's no way to describe that Godfather Pimp outfit that he is wearing, it's like as if he has robbed a Mafia fashion store on his way here. He sings pretty well, but King Tut looks stoned. But in the end, nobody can overlook that hideous Pimp Suit that poor Cedric is godfathered out of the room. This is why you should never dress like a pimp unless you're attending the Soul Train Awards.

Sleazebag comforts him, and aw, I feel so bad laughing at Cedric when he reveals that he has no way to go home to Kansas. "You win some, you lose some," he tries to say optimistically as a long trail of tears mark his left cheek. If I live there and if I don't know that the show wasn't live, I will drive by and offer to give that poor guy a lift home and a new set of clothes to go with it. If you do drive by the homeless shelters, bus depots, and such places in Austin, keep a look-out to see if Cedric is still stuck in that place. And if so, please give that poor soul a lift home. Be a good samaritan - help a Godfather Pimp Wannabe find his way home today!

Now it's Coffee's turn and he does a Lately. I'm not impressed, but Miss Paula's in love and so is Randy Randy. King Tut says that he has heard better - again, he and I are in perfect agreement. But there's no point, the Evil Sweetpeas have given Coffee his ticket to Hollywood, where he in his chauffeur outfit will probably end up playing bellhop in some hotel there. Randy Randy asks that Coffee's kid be named Randy. "Or Paula," Miss Paula chimes in. "Or Lucky," King Tut adds in, that evil bastard.

"It's good to have met both of you," Coffee tells the judges. With that snub to King Tut, he dashes out of the Guillotine Audition to catch his wife in the middle of popping out a brat for him.

Next is Jacob who looks like Justin Timberlake after a tanning machine disaster. He says that he has slept in his car two days just to be here. He thinks he's the next Justin Gurgling. He sings well enough, dances well enough, and the judges love him. Fair enough, but do we need another Justin Timberlake? Still, his hair is better than Gurgling's, if that's any small consolation. And we get to see King Tut having a powerful erection right there as he fawns creepily over this dude's baby face. Watch your bum, Jacob.

Then comes Katherine. After a Gurgling wannabe, now we have a Ryan Starr wannabe. She uses her limited range very well in her rendition of Fever, charming even King Tut into praising her "authentic" voice. She does have charisma, even if she overdoes her "Look at my hands lifted high! Are you impressed, people!" thing. She's in, but Miss Paula asks her to "lose the theatrics". Randy Randy comments that he can't see where she will fit in with the American Idol demographics, to which she protests, only to have King Tut shut her up and push her out of the room.

Then we have Patsy. She looks stoned. She stands there, stiff like a stone statue, and she is singing Unchained Melody so slowly, really slowly, really, really slowly, that the editing people can't resist showing scenes of spring turning to winter and a baby yawning his head off. She sounds as if she's a static sound on radio, worse, a static sound on sedatives, if such a thing is ever possible.

Randy Randy says that it must be the longest song he has ever heard.

King Tut says that at the rate she sings, they will never finish her album.

Patsy actually looked psychotic angry at their comments. But alas, she doesn't end up choking the judges to death. Sigh.

We leave her - probably still singing in that hall "I... need... yo...ur... lo... oo... ove..." today - to look at Coffee's baby. Aw. But don't think that will make me like this guy. He'll need to do better than that.

Anyway, that's it for the premier episode. It's not too fun, since there was a hideously high proportion of freaks to people who can hold two notes together. Things become tedious after the first half hour. Let's see how the rest of America measures up to Texas, New York, and Miami.