“This is gonna separate the men from the boys,” Randy Jackson assured us as we entered Hollywood Week. But there were more whimpers than bangs as we crashed heedlessly through the group stages of Hollywood Week without anyone really hating anyone else, even though they want to be soloists, not thrust together into a group. Oh the judges had a twist for us though.
The biggest “shock” elimination for me came in the form of Brian Rittenberry, the bookkeeper with a cancer-survivor wife, and it’s his back story, more than his voice, which made him a stand out to me anyway.
There were some really good performances, though, so perhaps we should move on to them.
In a “special twist,” “American Idol” producers Nigel Lythgoe and Ken Warwick got to pick the groups according to vocal range, age… and apparent maximum potential drama, although the last part appeared to be an epic fail.
The Math Heads were great on “Somebody to Love.” Matheus Fernandez, Nick Boddington, Mathenee Treco, and Gabe Brown had great harmonies. Nick was particularly good but still no one believed judge Nicki Minaj when she tried to pretend they weren’t all going through to the next round. The best part of their segment though was Mattheus’ exclamation of “Ow, my balls” as he bounced on his friends’ shoulders after hearing the news.
From the sublime to the ridiculous:NormanHillsmurdered “I’ll Be There.” Surely “there” couldn’t be into the next round, especially after Johnny Keyser forgot his words and Kareem Clark sang so far off key I had to struggle to recall the actual melody. Kareem was dumped but the other three survived.
Charlie Askew, Curtis Finch Jr., and another big African-American guy sailed through to the next round. You’ll recall Charlie is the guy so socially awkard he cane barely talk to people. Yeah right. Well he was pretty good on stage. Nicki Minaj gave them a standing ovation as Randy Jackson raved, “We! Needed! That! Right! Now! Today! In! This! Moment!”
“The Four Tones,” Micah Johnson, Vincent Powell, Marvin Calderon and David Willis sailed through easily with “Hold On, I’m Coming.” I ook forward to hearing more of that falsetto from Marvin.
“Young Love” Zach Birnbaum, Nate Tao, Cortez Shaw, and Elijah Liu impressed the judges with “Some Kind of Wonderful.”
After completely forgetting the words to “Don’t You Wanna Stay” Paul Jolley and Will White got to stay but we said goodbye to the rest of their incompetent…I mean, unfortunate…group.
I thought B Side totally, totally slaughtered Maroon 5′s “Payphone” – and seriously nt in a good way – but the judges loved it. Really loved it. This had to be some kind of ratings ploy to keep The Turbinator in the show.