Could've Been
American Idol 4: Episode 13

Men's Round | Women's Round | Results

Eeeeee! Wednesday

Ryan Sleazebag innocently stands with the Twenty-Four and babbles about performances and votings and how we should all sit at the edge of our seats in eager anticipation for... for what, exactly? That's a good question. No one warned me that when Sleazebag talks about coming up with things to stretch the results show to an hour, he is talking about underhanded mind games, cooercive humiliation, and outright backhanded compliments and insincerity. I'm in awe. It takes a sick, sick mind to put these contestants through a show that even Jerry Springer would be proud to call the bastard son of his imagination. Because I'm a sweet, lovable old lady who hates to see people get their dreams crushed, I hate this show and wish that people will be nicer to everybody. Why are people so mean! Excuse me, I have to go run and gather myself while the credits roll before I completely lose control of my bowel muscles.

Ryan "Hold Me Tight" Sleazebag, in white jacket over white shirt - all that is missing is a white Jack O'Dandy hat - stands before the stage and holds an extra-sized microphone very close to his mouth as he talks about how the elimination process will take place. Looks like someone feels more threatened by King Tut's awe of the way Amoonda Ovula swallows the head of her microphone last night than he let on. But first, because this show needs something to fill the time, Sleazebag introduces a pointless montage of scenes of the auditions and the Boot Camp using a script written by him surely. I know it must be him because the part where he puts on a dramatic pose of him during the "Three judges! One host!" part in the clip can only be his own idea, certainly. He talks about going to corners, down alleys and valleys, up mountains and hills, taking a side turn to irrelevance on the We Are Going To Hell rollercoaster ride found only in Tampa Bay, and that is how this show kills five minutes of my life just like that.

After Sleazebag has suitably impressed everyone about what a "journey" they all had on the show, he now explains that the lady with the lowest number of votes will be going home now. The guys are waiting in the Red Room - you know, I'm impressed at how Conty Bint always knows which way to turn to the camera and makes a stupid "Look at me! Me! Meeee!" face at it - for their turn to sit on the grill. Sleazebag announces that 40 million votes poured in over the two nights combined, conveniently omitting the mention of 35 million of these coming in on the male preliminary round, and then, because I may not understand him the six thousand previous times he mentioned it, he explained the whole elimination process again. Sleazebag introduces the judges and makes a really stupid crack about Randy Randy and King Tut. Sleazebag compares King Tut to Richard Simmons. What does that make Sleazebag? Dame Barbara Cartland?

Sleazebag now asks the judges' opinion of the performances and how these judges believe that the contestants can improve on those. I know, asking these people about music is like asking an elephant about the Pythagoras theorem. Randy Randy may know something about music as long as the topic is confined to music of the eighties. King Tut is absolutely useless because he is always pretentious and smug at times like this. As for Miss Paula? Let me just recap her response to Sleazebag's question about the importance of song selection and leave it at that. Miss Paula says that only the contestants know "deep inside" what the right song is because the right song is supposed to "provoke" love and joy (seriously now) to themselves as well as to other people. Hmm, if that is the case, what makes her the bloody judge of whether someone is singing the "right song" since she insists that only the singers know for themselves whether they are singing the "right song"? And does Crazy Coolin' provoke anything apart from howls of hysterical laughter at the sight of Miss Paula stimulating sex in her music video using a walking stick? Take that has-been out of career dumpsville and she thinks she is now a bloody music guru. Sleazebag asks King Tut why King Tut is so tough on the guys. King Tut gives a BS answer about how this bunch of guys is the best bunch of guys ever on the show and he expects so much from them, but come on, we all know that they want a guy to win, which is why nearly all the guys are pimped and shoved down the audience's throats throughout the Boot Camp shows while people only remember Cattle Underwood, Amoonda Ovula, Mikalah Gordon, and Lindsey Cardinale from the female camp of contestants. If these guys aren't good, by golly, the judges and the show will make sure that people will think that they are good. The fix is in.

Sleazebag talks about waiting for the big day at the "red-carpet Kodak theatre" which somehow morphs into why people should drive a 200hp Ford Escape (make sure you steal Daddy's credit card along with the keys when you go driving, little girls) as well as vote for the best Crap Ad Thing featuring the wannabes throughout the finals. Fifteen minutes gone now. Let's see what else Sleazie can do to fill the time. Sleazebag promises that this show will be emotional. He hopes that the ladies are ready to face the music.

Oh, how about a long recap of "ladies night", which he predictably extrapolates to "where the feeling's right". While Aloha and Nadia are given their dues because they force the show to do so, Cattle Underwood and Mikalah Gordon get ridiculous edits where anyone watching for the first time will get the impression that Cattle and Mikalah knocked the ball out of the park. After that, Sleazebag talks to some of the ladies. Nadia leaves her options open, saying that it is up to America to decide whether she stays or goes. Sleazebag says that the best compliment Celena Rae received from the judges about her performance is that she looked great. Celena says that she will take any compliment that she can take but she has given her all in her performance no matter what happens tonight. Janay admits that nerves had gotten the better of her during her performance. I'm surprised that Sleazebag doesn't ask Mikalah anything. I bet she can babble her way to the last second of the hour if she is given the opportunity.

Sleazebag now announces that the ladies seated at the top row of the Grill (Aloha, Jessica, Vonzell, Amoonda, Sarah, and Celena) are safe because none of them is the one with the lowest number of votes. He now turns to the ladies seated at the bottom row of the Grill. Cattle Underwood is safe (duh), Mikalah is safe (and she overreacts so much that she nearly gives Janay, who is seated beside her, a black eye). Sleazebag skips Janay and Meloonda and tells Nadia, who is seated at the far right of the bottom row, that she is safe too. He moves to Lindsey, again wearing a slinky thing that looks suspiciously like another piece lingerie worn over a tank-top, and tells her that she is safe too. This leaves Janay and Meloonda. Sleazebag invites them to come forward and stand on the dais with him, where he then announces that Janay is also safe (the young lady is so relieved, I tell you). This means that Meloonda Loonda is the lady with the lowest votes and she is eliminated from the contest.

Meloonda has been looking shell-shocked since she stood up to walk to the dais and now her face remains completely frozen. She runs her hands wearily, disbelievingly, over her face, her face still frozen in that half-disbelief, half-shocked expression. Sleazebag asks her whether she is okay. She ignores him and just stares blankly at the camera. Is she looking at me? She can't see me, right? Damn it, she's not even blinking as she is staring at me. Sleazebag awkwardly asks everyone to give Meloonda a round of applause. Now Meloonda starts to look furious. Her face is still in that same frozen expression but her eyes are now noticeably darker, angrier as she stares unblinkingly at the camera. Wait, now she moves. She places the back of her hands on each side of her waist as she begins to scowl at the camera. Sleazebag asks her one more time whether she is okay. She finally turns to look at him and says that she is shocked. Obviously reading aloud his part from a scripted exchange, Sleazebag asks her whether she had considered the possibility of elimination when she went to sleep last night. This is why I suspect that the exchange is scripted (every contestant who gets eliminated will no doubt has to say the same thing with Sleazebag) - who on earth brings up dreaming and going to bed at night at a time like this, except really bad scriptwriters? Meloonda says yes. Sleazebag quickly asks whether this means that she had no confidence in herself.

Hah, I laugh when Meloonda just ignores him and continues what is the start of a rant. Sleazebag flashes a look of panic to someone off-camera when Meloonda starts saying that she knows she will be eliminated soon because she didn't receive the same amount of attention as some of the chosen ones of her group. She doesn't name names, saying only that "some people" gain fans early in the show while she is not shown at all so she knows that she is at a disadvantage compared to these people. You go, Mel, say things as they are to these people! Sleazebag interrupts her to tell her that she is among the best talents of the show so she should be honored to have come this far. Sheesh, does he even listen to himself? That can so easily be misinterpreted to mean instead, "Hey, talentless trollop, consider yourself lucky that you lasted this long with so many people obviously better than you, biatch!"

Mel's mouth open to speak. Fearing who-knows-what will come out from her mouth, Sleazebag quickly turns to and asks Randy Randy to offer an explanation as to where Mel went wrong, reminding him that he and Miss Paula praised Mel for having a great voice after the performance. Randy Randy and Miss Paula comically tried to say that they watched Mel on TV after the live show and found her "pitchy". King Tut tells Mel that she needs to create a reason why people should vote for her (translation: the show only creates reasons for a handful of chosen ones - people like Mel will have to work the extra mile on their own) and she didn't do a good job at that. On one hand, I know that Mel should have sung better if she wanted to last longer on the show, but on the other hand, this show's smug denial of its playing favorites is really ticking me off. I find myself feeling sorry for Mel. I understand why she is feeling angry.

Sleazebag, with the worst straight face I have ever seen, tells Mel that he is so sorry that he has to ask her to sing for them one more time before she goes. Yeah, he is torn up about asking this obviously torn-up young lady who is barely holding back tears to play the stage monkey to the audience as one last humiliation. What can Mel do? Unshed tears made her eyes shine bright as she lifelessly goes through her song. Janay is weeping openly, no doubt thinking that she will be in Mel's shoes soon enough if she doesn't improve. Back in the Red Room, the guys are doing a good job looking miserable except for the Conty Bint who nods and smirks smugly as he watches Mel croak her way through the song. When Mel has to sing the final, higher refrain, she finally cracks and tears start falling down her cheeks. "The power of love," she half-shouts, half-sobs as the other ladies walk down from the Grill for the obligatory We Love You, Now Begone group hug.

The guys now take their places at the Grill. Sleazebag says that everyone is sad that Mel is leaving and then gleefully chortles that this is what happens when you people out there don't vote for your favorites. From unconvincing sympathy to outright glee in one second, how nice. Sleazebag is officially the worst talk show host ever. Sleazebag asks the audience to give the guys a round of applause. Because predominantly Stupid Little Girls watch this show now, the applause for the guys are much louder than that for the gals.

Sleazebag now recaps the show. I absolutely want to throw a chair against the wall when Sleazebag announces that the judges have nothing bad to say about both rockers. Hell, yeah, Bo Bint rocked the house down but I want to puke, no I want to KILL SOMEONE when Sleazebag starts talking about how Conty Bint performed very well, conveniently omitting the fact that Randy Randy found the performance off-key. In fact, if I haven't watched the guys perform, I'd get this impression that the Conty Bint performed better than Bo! GOD, the temerity of this show to force all that BS down my throat! You know what, if they want Conty Bint to be their half-arsed Idol, let's give them him! Watching him murdering a ballad about starlight and chasing rainbows for the finale will be pure pleasure most divine to enjoy. In fact, Sleazebag closes the recap by saying that it was a "strong night for the guys". By now, even the deaf, blind, and mute can see which way the wind is blowing on the show, I'm sure.

Anyway, after yet another disgustingly lop-sided recap where the show is determined to rewrite history and insist that its chosen ones shone the brightest in the last two days, Sleazebag now talks to the guys. Sleazebag now targets Bo, asking Bo whether he being one of the oldest in the show will have any advantage or disadvantage to his progress and performances. Oh, that's nice. I can see all the Stupid Little Girls now going, "Eeeeuw! He's old! And dirty!" Ah, but do you know that while Bo is 29, Conty Bint is also - wait for it - 29? You don't see Sleazebag asking Conty Bint that question now, do you? No, we have to pretend that Conty Bint is young and spry the sunny side of 20 to make the Stupid Little Girls vote while being led by the rush of estrogenal bloom in their loins and not by their ears. Bo, bless him, mentions how he writes and plays his own songs with his band but he is sure that he is not at an advantage because he is surrounded by many talented people. I don't know what he is doing here. Wait, I know. His band needs the exposure, he wants the exposure, and after playing for so long and never finding fame, audience, or money, the American Idol dream can be too tempting to resist. But Bo losing may be the best thing to happen to his career, so who knows?

On to the Conty Bint. Sleazebag "mediates" a truly disgusting "reconciliation" where Sleazebag admits that he was the one who told Randy Randy to stick to rapping after Randy Randy demonstrated to Conty Bint where in the song ("Bey-Bay!") Conty Bint went off-key after Conty Bint's performance of Kissed By A Rose. There was a huge show of outrage by forum denizens of the official website forum with many Conty Bint fans expressing their dismay and even outrage at what they perceive as arrogance on the Conty Bint's part. So now the show wants to quickly stick a plaster to the leak of Conty Bint's popularity by having this public and unnecessary reconciliation where the Conty Bint insists that everything is a misunderstanding and Randy Randy is "alright" with him again.

I'm really sorry that I am getting on a soapbox instead of giving a recap but I have to get all this disgust I am feeling off my chest. Even at the most blatant of Fantasia and Ruben pimping, the show never goes as far as to put down talented people so that their chosen ones will come off smelling like roses. Crap soaked in rosewater, perhaps, but still crap nonetheless, that's what I say.

When asked, Anwar says that he doesn't know what his chances are on this show. All he hopes for is that, knowing that America is diversified, he hopes that he can attract a "demographic" who likes his sound. Oh, baby, America may be diversified but I'm not sure about the audience of this show, at least those that actually bother to retext or redial the same number on their phones for two hours straight.

Sleazebag announces that the guys at the top row (Anwar, Joe, David, Bo, Mario, and Ape Boy Savoy) are safe as none of them command the lowest number of votes tonight. He then focuses on the guys seated at the bottom row of the Grill. Sleazebag calls all the guys at the bottom row to join him at the dais. There, he pronounces Trechea Boi as safe, skips Conty Bint over to tell Jug Harris that Jug is safe, grants Nikachu a reprieve, and finally tells Conty that he too is safe. That leaves Jared Yates and Travis Tucker, two good-looking but so, so bland young men standing with Sleazebag. Sleazebag then sends Travis back to the Grill and tells Jared that he is going home. Sleazebag apologizes to Jared for telling him the bad news and then asks Jared gleefully how Jared feels about the tough last few minutes that led to his elimination. The next time I want someone to ask me, "I'm so sorry that your house got burned down, all your loved ones died in the fire, and you have now only the clothes you are wearing, but hey, tell me, how do you feel about being at the receiving end of such rotten luck, eh?", I know who to call.

Seriously, the scriptwriter should be taken out to the back and shot for this atrocious attempt at a "talk show" format. And then he should be shot again one more time for good measure. If Sleazebag is the one who comes up all this crap, there is a God because his talk show is freaking cancelled. Can you imagine? "Next, we have Melissa Gutarak, who has the misfortune to see her son being swallowed by an anaconda and all the while, the son was screaming her name and begging her to help him. So, Melissa, do you think snakes are cool?"

The judges weigh in. Randy Randy says that Jared didn't show his personality in his performance. Funny, I thought the personality of a young man who loves Marc Anthony came through very well in the performance of a - duh - Marc Anthony song. What more does Randy Randy want? A freaking Diane Warren song sung five notes higher than usual? Sometimes these judges should do me a favor and just shut up. Miss Paula wants Jared to sing one last time with "passion". If Jared takes the microphone and throws it at her, will she consider that a form of "passion"? King Tut has nothing to say to Jared. Thank you.

Jared sings and forgets the words towards the end, not that I blame him, but overall he is pretty cool about his elimination. He may even have expected it. I don't think Meloonda is alone in understanding how precarious the positions of the Unchosen Ones are on this show. He and Sleazebag exchange a big fat manhug while the other guys come down to pretend that they are sad at seeing Jared go.

Now that he doesn't need to pretend to be sympathetic, Sleazebag smiles and happily announces that the show has one more guy and gal to humiliate and kick out so everyone, don't touch the knob, dial, or whatever.

The ladies are back on the Grill. Before he starts on them, Sleazebag asks for another round of applause for the recently departed Meloonda Loonda and Jared Yates. That would be so sweet if he hasn't been salivating at the thought of chopping two more people off the show only minutes ago. This time, the ladies at the bottom row (Cattle, Mikalah, Janay, Nadia, and Lindsey) are safe because none of them command the second lowest number of votes. Sleazebag then turns to the top row. Aloha is safe (she makes a mocking gesture of wiping at her forehead - I wish that gesture doesn't come off as obnoxiously arrogant as it did) and so is Jessica. This leaves Amoonda, Sarah, and Celena, the three Women With Breasts on the show. Without much ado, Sleazebag announces, "Sarah, you are out. Come on down." Well, at least he doesn't add, "And hurry up!"

Sarah's face, calm previously, quickly transforms. She turns paler than usual and her eyes start to well. Sleazebag asks Randy Randy what went wrong with Sarah's performance. How nice, really, to hear where you screw up just before they toss you out of the theatre. Randy Randy launches into a ridiculous ramble about how she should have performed every performance as if it was her last. How does he know that she didn't do just that on that night? On and on that idiot goes until Sleazebag cuts him off and asks Miss Paula what she thinks. Because Sarah doesn't have a penis, Miss Paula smugly reminds everyone that she called Sarah on singing something that doesn't feature a "lead vocal" the previous night and reminds Sarah that song choice is very important. If Sarah has a penis, I tell you, Miss Paula will be in tears, babbling about how America has it wrong again. King Tut tells Sarah that in previous seasons she would have done well. He doesn't say why she wouldn't do well this season but I'm sure you guys can say it along with me: they want a guy to win this time around. King Tut tells Sarah that she is young so she can pick herself up and improve. He tells her that her song choice killed her.

Sleazebag, who has been so sympathetic only a few seconds ago, chuckles and tells Sarah that he has to make her sing one more time the song that the judges don't think is good for her. Sarah's expression at this point is best described as "Utterly Disgusted". She looks like she wants to kill someone. She just moves a little around the stage and lifelessly works her way through her song Get Ready, actually rolling up her eyes when she sings, "Get ready, here I come!" She looks like she really wants to throw the microphone down and tell everybody to get lost and die. And Sleazebag has the great idea of asking the other ladies to come down and dance behind the murderous-eyed bitch-faced Sarah. I really laugh when the really stupid Amoonda Ovula saunters over and grabs Sarah's shoulder with a happy laugh. While Sarah looks like she wants to cry and scream at the same time, the ladies around her are dancing like they have no care in the world. What a Kodak moment.

I'm sorry to see Sarah go because I think she has an interesting voice and she deserves a chance to try and do more on the show. Compared to the lifeless Amoonda Ovula, Lindsey Cardinale, and the mutant mouth monster Mikalah Gordon, Sarah shouldn't have gone so soon. Oh, and I've called Sarah Mather an alien in the past but tonight she is unbelievably gorgeous. I'm not sure about the fried-frizzled curls on her head but her eyes are strikingly beautiful. She makes Amoonda and Celena who are seated at each side of her look ordinary. There's an elfin grace to her face that those stupid photographers fail to capture in their shots of her. So yes, I humbly eat what I said about Sarah's alien facial features.

And now, Sleazebag brings out the guys. He says that previously, he made the guys at the bottom row of the Grill face the pressure. Now, he asks the guys at the top row to come join him on the dias. "Make two lines on either side of me," he tells them. Eh, that sounds like a line from one of his dirty sex fantasies. He is in charge of the script, isn't he? Quickly, Sleazebag sends Mario and Scott back to the Grill. Then David and Bo are sent back too. Anwar and Joe are also sent back, much to Joe's relief. As an Unchosen One, Joe knows, if he and Anwar are the last ones standing and one of them is going, he will be the one to go. At this point, Nadia in the Red Room has her mouth open in a "WTF?" moment. Sleazebag then turns to the guys seated at the bottom row, straight at Jug Harris who is seated in the middle of the row, arms crossed, legs spread out straight and wide, and says, "You're out!"

The ladies in the Red Room gasp in shock.

This show is so evil! I don't know whether to admire or disapprove of such gratuitous tormenting of the wannabes.

Sleazebag cements his reputation as the worst interviewer ever by asking Jug how it feels to be eliminated in such a fiendish manner. He's not expecting compliments from Jug, surely? Jug says philosophically that he has given what he can do to the audience and while he has high hopes for himself on the show, things don't work out the way he wants them do. But he says that there is nothing he can do about this so he just shrugs. Que serra serra, I guess. He just hopes that this isn't the end of the road for him. Because a penis is getting eliminated from the show, Miss Paula starts wailing that she cannot stand Wednesdays, boo-hoo-hoo. Give me a break. The judges justify his booting by saying that he shouldn't have sung a "novelty song". Oh, so now plain old rock-and-roll with a touch of blues is a "novelty song"? I sometimes don't know why I keep watching this show. This show isn't Music For Dummies, it's Music For The Wretchedly Infantile.

Jug performs Travelin' Band again and watching him, I find myself feeling sorry to see him go as well. I don't think he and Jared are the worst of the bunch and I definitely wish that these two guys have stayed longer and allow me to make up my mind whether they are good or not in my estimation. Like the Pen Salesman, Jug Harris has a personality and taste in music that actually appeal to me. I wish I have to chance to find out whether Jug can sing better than the Pen Salesman.

Blah blah blah group hug, group pose, and Sleazebag announces that he is out. I take a deep cleansing breath and switch off the TV. It has been an overlong results show filled with unnecessary cruelty and pettiness, with several instances where I feel that the show people have crossed the line from harmless mindscrew to outright bullying. It will interesting to see if there is a backlash from the Republican Christian wholesome family unit demographics that the show apparently cherishes so dearly to the exclusion of everyone else.

What's on the other channel anyway? Just in case.

Men's Round | Women's Round | Results

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