American Idol Recap: This Woman's Work(ing My Last Nerve)
American Idol's surviving ("competing" seems like an overstatement) eight dudes ripped through enough country jams and fossilized ballads to fill your average 4 a.m. infomercial. Unfortunately, these dudes couldn't sell anything. Let's rank these jank caterwaulers from #8-1.
8. Andrew Garcia: "Genie in a Bottle"
To my ears, "Genie in a Bottle" was not only a wretched choice, but an indication that Andrew Garcia doesn't belong in the competition. It's sort of unfair that the judges constantly reference his "Straight Up" performance from Hollywood Week when his "Sugar We're Going Down" from the Top 24 was also serviceable, but they needed to pitch a Jermaine Sellers-size fit for this one. The choice of the Christina Aguilera ditty was pure kitsch, a total gimmick meant to recall the fluffy "Straight Up"s acoustic treatment. At this point, Garcia is forfeiting his artistic identity and just pandering -- which made this whole performance even grosser (and sadder) than it already was. Rubbed me the wrong way, indeed.
7. Aaron Kelly: "I'm Already There"
Clarification: Aaron Kelly is not more talented than Andrew Garcia. In fact, his only chance at winning the competition is if he squints, contorts, and figures out how to resemble a Bowersox dreadlock. But the boy does have a shred of an identity, even if its "Bingo Night country entertainer at a rest home." His "I'm Already There" should solidify his gig there. Though I admit: I kinda dig his paralyzed-James-Brown stage presence.