Tuesday, January 27, 2009

AI Season 8 Auditions: Jacksonville

Hopefully this American Idol recap is just as good and snarky as my previous posts. DH is flying back from Boston so I am watching this solo. That means I'm missing my sounding board for all my eye rolls and comments.

Even though I am still full from dinner I am all settled in with a bowl of ice cream and my handy remote. Commercials are no one's friend. Let the games begin.

We open with some old shots of Randy Jackson from his Journey days to introduce us to Jacksonville. Little known fact but I've been there. And it probably comes as no surprise that it was a boring visit. I am not expecting big things from Jacksonville. Once in the audition room I see that Simon is sitting on the camera left of the table and Randy on the right, opposite of their normal positions. It really threw me off. Apparently I need consistency in my reality shows along with my regular life.

Our first contestant is proud of comparisons with Season 1's Justin Guarini. Really? I think 2 people watched from Kelly to Justin (yes, Natalie, you were one) so I wouldn't be particularly proud. He decides to sing Marvin Gaye and he's actually pretty good. But the package is all wrong with the clothes and hair and vocal trills and hiccups. He is let through to Hollywood and hopefully goes to find a stylist, stat.

Sharon brought her cute dog with her. Of course the judges love the dog and I think she had a mediocre voice. But she's cute so Simon and Randy let her through immediately. Paula caved and said yes so it appears as though Sharon will be around next week. For a day or so at least...I kind of like how disgusted Kara is with the sheer maleness of Randy and Simon in some of their selections.

2 down and 2 in. Weird. I don't think that's happened before. That means the crazy should be ramped up next. The next girl wasn't completely crazy but had a terrible voice so she was out. Then was a cute African America girl with an over abundance of confidence for a nasally tone. Simon's comment: "Great smile but the voice is terrible." He then chastised her mother for encouraging the singing. He should have that conversation with every family member or friend of a rejected auditioner.

Miss Florida Latina USA belted out some Whitney Houston and I was fairly impressed. I was expecting her to be terrible. Wearing a tiara and sash does not typically result in a good audition. Simon was spot on with his comment that there was something off about this girl. Then she and Paula had a weird tete-a-tete and the judges passed her through to Hollywood. I feel like we are in Bizarro world tonight. What is up with this show?

Darren Darnell showed some dance moves before his audition that make me sure he was going to be terrible in front of the judges. He did not disappoint with his Boyz II Men rendition and his crying jags. Moving on we see a montage of disappointed hopefuls.

Last up on Day One was a girl who compared herself to Mariah Carey and suffers from some kind of spazziness. Somehow she managed to have Randy sit on Kara's lap and Paula on Simon's. But that was the total amount of entertainment once she opened her mouth to start singing. So the last audition of the day was a bust.

A total of 9 tickets were passed out. 94 total and counting.

We are promised heading into Day 2 that the talent will be much better. It can't be much worse. Randy and Simon are back in their regular seats and all is right in American Idol land. We meet a 16 year old Jasmine who comes with her mom and four sisters. And damn, they are some good looking women! She busts out some Fergie and totally nails it. I would be surprised if she doesn't do well in Hollywood. We'll see her next week and probably in the Top 20.

George, a Physics major, scares me immediately with his Grizzly beard. He is also shorter than Ryan which I didn't know was possible. I'm sure you will be shocked to hear that he was terrible.

Annmarie is 24 and loves Kara. Her adoration appears genuine and she has a great voice. Simon does nail it that she is lacking in confidence and he sends her out to find some and come back for a second chance. I am a bit annoyed at this ploy as she will obviously make it through with her talent. She throws on a little make up and takes off a jacket to show off her body. She sings a song I love ("Bubbly") and I am very excited about her. I like her modesty - it's a refreshing change from the hubris of all other contestants. The judges pass her through as well they should.

TK is back for a second year. He looks familiar but I don't really remember him from last year. He sings "Imagine" which he doesn't do as well as David A. did last season. But he does a nice job and has a good tone to his voice. Simon nixes him but the other three put him through to Hollywood.

Michael freaks out when he is told that he can't audition with his guitar. He stares at it during his audition so there is some kind of weird dependency there. I'm thinking a nice therapist can really help. He doesn't help himself with a terrible song selection. He is practically begging the judges for a shot and was correctly denied.

Another 7 for 16 total come out of Jacksonville. At 101 golden tickets we head to Salt Lake City tomorrow. The home of David Archuleta's enduring sweetness. I am bored with auditions now and ready for Hollywood Week. I know that Puerto Rico is still to come which means we have another whole week of this audition mess. I will give AI some editing credit with showing more talent than crazies this year. But the claim was the talent was so good they had to show more. Um, I'm not seeing that. Perhaps showcase a few more of the stellar performers? How about the rest of you? Are you still enjoying auditions or are you ready to get the show on the road?

SJ out.


Theresa said...

I am so ready for Hollywood week.

Random, but I've also been to Jacksonville - what are the odds? I agree - quite boring.

Mommy, Esq. said...

Michael is everything wrong with his generation (he's almost 19). Entitled, pushes away friends and family and cries when he doesn't get what he wants. Is this what happens to kids of helicopter parents (his dad was carting around his guitar case). Dude, listen to some constructive criticism. Simon nicely told him he wouldn't be good within the parameters of the competition - that is the politest rejection he's ever given.

I agree that Jasmine and her sisters are really good looking!

Ned woke up early and had to watch the end with me this AM (thanks, DVR). He liked the "walking on sunshine" montage. I sang and danced him along.

Jordan Rose said...

I am totally ready for Hollywood. Between all the other scripted shows I am entrenched in, I may just skip next week.

Those montages HAVE to go. The show is cheesy enough, but having everyone dancing and singing to a single "theme song" is like pouring a Costco-sized vat of Cheese Wiz on the show.

Also, I'm not quite sure how "Miss Florida Latina USA" won her title. There is something really "off" about her and she annoys the hell out of me.

Natalie said...

what do i love more than your recaps, sharp anaylsis and surprisingly accurate critique of vocal abilities? I love that AI is on tonight AND tomorrow night and then it's Hollywood baby!!!!

Stacey said...

It's true?!? Three nights of AI and then Hollywood Week? Woo hoo! And of course that means you, my readers, get 3 fabulous recaps this week. It's a win/win all around. Except perhaps for the poor suckers featured as "entertaining" rather than "talented." They get public humiliation instead.

Jordan said...

oh just two more nights then hollywood NEXT week. That's much better. My dark horse is still that Stevie girl from one of the first audition shows.

Helen said...

I guess the other peson who's watched "From Justin to Kelly" was me, because Natalie has forced me to watch:)