Tuesday, May 14, 2013

‘AMERICAN IDOL’ SEASON 12 PRE-FINALE ROUND-UP

The AMERICAN IDOL two-part season finale starts tomorrow, and as we’re just two days away from finding out who the 12th IDOL winner will be, here’s a look back at how season 12 has progressed, the talent, the judges, the competition, and so on…


AMERICAN IDOL season 12 started with an interesting mix of judges in the new panel, including IDOL veteran Randy Jackson. Mariah Carey slowly established herself as the encouraging judge, who would try and spin every critique into something positive, in an almost maternal way. Keith Urban became the guy that gave a professionally sound critique, but always making a positive comment. Nicki Minaj became known for her weird and sometimes outrageous analogies and comments, and one of the contestants’ harshest critics. By the time we were down to the top 10 girls and guys, it was already clear that the level of talent among the ladies was way higher than among the men. During Hollywood week itself, I had made note of who my favorite would be, and the one I was rooting was Angie Miller. After her performance of an original song, at the piano, which the judges (especially Mariah) kept referring to thereafter, she was the strongest contestant for me, and someone who, apart from being insanely talented, had the looks and very current sound to be a successful contemporary recording artist.

Even though the judges eventually did right by the most talented contestants in the top 20, like Candice, Kree, Angie and Amber, by giving them spots in the top 10, I felt like they really got swayed by the theatrics of some of the other performers. People like Zoanette and Charlie, who had stage presence, and were memorable for their eccentricities, really weren’t delivering well vocally. But all’s well that ended well with the top ten, and we had the five most talented contestants, namely the girls, in that group. The results over the following five weeks were predictable, as the top five guys went home one by one, and rightfully so, opening up the real competition when the remaining contestants were an all-girls group of the top five. That’s when things became really tense, and even though someone had to go home (almost) each week, it was truly sad to see Janelle Arthur, Amber Holcomb and, unfortunately, Angie Miller leave.

Throughout the final rounds, I enjoyed the performances on results nights, especially because of the number of former IDOL contestants who hadn’t won, from Colton Dixon to Jessica Sanchez to Lauren Alaina… That was bound to be encouraging for current contestants who were getting eliminated. What I also enjoyed were the judges. I think that the current judges’ panel has the most interesting mix of people we’ve seen on that panel so far. From Nicki and Mariah coming this close to having a catfight, to Randy always bowing in praise of Mariah to Nicki telling Keith not to steal her words before she says them, to Randy quipping in to second Keith’s remarks every now and then…they make a good team that can actually have a conversation around that table which is interesting, not just because it’s entertaining, but because it’s mostly productive (except for the catfighting), thought-provoking and good for anyone interested in music. What I also liked was Jimmy Iovine and his harsh critiques each week, wherein he called a spade a spade, without Mariah’s compassion, Keith’s sugar-coating, Nicki’s outrageous comments or Randy’s catchphrases. And the friction between Jimmy and the judges made it all the more entertaining. Of course, one of my favorite things about AMERICAN IDOL is Ryan Seacrest. He always does an outstanding job as host, making the show worth watching almost regardless of who the judges or contestants are!

Coming back to the remaining contestants, as Randy Jackson pointed out, we had (probably) the best top three that the show had ever seen. For me, despite whatever would go on from there, and despite the fact that my personal favorite was Angie, all three deserved to win, and the eliminations and the remaining contestants thereof wouldn’t come as any surprise. Unfortunately, the first to leave that group was my favorite, Angie Miller, and I was really sad. In my head, she was already the winner, and if anything, I would simply miss her performing in the season finale performance episode. For the first time ever during an AMERCIAN IDOL elimination, I made a mental note to myself that I would definitely look out for what she does next with her music career, because Angie Miller is one performer that I don’t want to lose track of. And with Angie’s departure, we’re now left with the two who will compete for the winning title. Both Candice and Kree are insanely talented, and I’d have a hard time choosing, or predicting the final result. (I’m personally rooting for Kree though.) But if there’s one thing we can be sure of is that this season will have one amazing finale, with two excellent performers vying for the big prize. And while we know that Jennifer Lopez and Adam Lambert will be among those performing on results night of the finale, I can’t wait to see the combinations of performers from the remaining top 10 of the season. So while Fox and the producers decide what they’re going to do with the show and the judges’ panel, with Randy having announced his exit (I personally think that at least Keith Urban should definitely stay on), at least for now, we can just sit back and enjoy the two-part finale starting tomorrow night!


What have you thought of season 12 of AMERICAN IDOL? Has your favorite made it to the top two? Who are you rooting for? And do you think that Keith, Mariah and Nicki should come for season 13? Do share your thoughts…

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