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Idol Anal-ysis - (Round of 2) - 5/25/10

We say goodbye to the site bye saying good-bye to this season of American Idol. And Good Riddance. So who wins this dreadful season? Find out who we think inside...

But first, before we continue...

As we all know, this is the last column for this site. I would like to thank a number of people. First and foremost, Steve and Adam, who both convinced me to write up this column for the past 4 years. I'd also like to thank Jason Block, Chico Alexander, Lee DiGeorge and Jason Plump for their color commentary on the articles as well. Finally, I'd like to have a shout out to you, the readers. Without you, there's no column.

As for me, my work continues. You can find me on GameShowNewsNet.com as a writer, columnist and so much more. Now that the frivolities are all out of the way, let's start the final recap.

So we have 3 rounds this evening: The Contestant's Choice, Simon Fuller's Choice and the 'Coronation' song, which last year graced us with Kara Dioguardi and her hurricanes. Ugh. We'll see what monstrosity awaits us then, but first...

Crystal Bowersox wins the coin toss, so Lee DeWyze goes first. His first choice of song? 'The Boxer', which is a repeat from what he did earlier on this season.
The Good - It was a nice rendition of the song. He actually sang it smoother than the last time he performed it. It was much more on pitch.
The Bad - But I agree with Randy that he didn't bring the fire that he had last time. I also agree that he needed passion, because the dullness of the song matched the dullness of his suit.
The Jason - This was from Inspirational Week. I didn't like this when I heard this the first time, but I have to admit he toned down the growl and made this very presentable and very well done.
The Chico - He doesn't really come into his element until the second verse, but you can tell he likes this song and that he likes being on that stage. That's as important as anything. Still, he did this song TWICE before (once that first time and once in Chicago), and he had swag those two times... Not so for this time. He could afford himself a little more energy there.
The Verdict - It was a nice effort, but again, 'Nice' doesn't cover what's needed here. We needed phenomenal.

Crystal Bowersox counters with something I hated the first time around 'Me and Bobby McGee'. Can she do anything better with it this time around?
The Good - Well, it's a lot more emotional and passionate than what Lee DeWyze did.
The Bad - But whereas Lee was pitch-perfect, Crystal was all over the place. She neglected both the pitch and the pacing to get to the end, like she was running against Kim Kardashian to get to the buffet line first.
The Jason - This is who Crystal is. And she did perform it with as much passion as she did last time, which is a lot more than Lee did.
The Chico - Now THAT was an auspicious start. It's obvious that Crystal came here with one thing in mind: victory. The question is does she have the staying power? We'll find out soon, but right now... Round 1 to Crystal.
The Verdict - I'm going to disagree with the guys. Crystal was more emotional, but it was a pale imitation of the first time she did it. On the other hand, Lee was much improved. I'm giving the first round to Lee.

Round 2 time, and it's time to hear what Simon Fuller has in store for the contestants. Lee DeWyze, starts us off with 'Everybody Hurts'
The Good - I really like the take that he did on this song. He's hitting the pitch and hailing the money notes. And he's looking snappier in his outfit.
The Bad - I do agree with Ellen that he needs to be less reserved and more letting it out. But that's not the only problem - for a second with his vibrato, I thought Casey James walked in there and did a duet with him.
The Jason - A very good song choice, but for some reason I didn't connect with it. It seemed passionless and lifeless. I didn't believe it, I didn't feel it.
The Chico - Lee came back with the passion that was sorely lacking in his first performance. It was a little shaky to start, but he got it back. He's got one more round to keep it there. But in the meantime, he needs to take hold of the moment and just lose himself to it, because right now, he's thinking too much.
The Verdict - It's better for him than the first song. He's getting better as we go along. Is it going to be good enough?

Crystal Bowersox. is next, and she counters with 'Black Velvet'.
The Good - You know the passion that the judges wanted out of Lee? They got it out of Crystal. That's was a very nice vocal performance.
The Bad - I hated the arrangement to this song. It's overdone, overproduced and way too slow. And I think the complete miss on the money note tore the velvet to shreds.
The Jason - A great song choice for her. And she kicked it up a notch with her passion, energy and soul. Her vocals were much better than his too.
The Chico - A little shaky at the chorus, but other than that, it fit her like a glove. Round 2 goes to Mama Sox.
The Verdict - Once again, I didn't like it as much as everyone else did. I'll give it to Crystal based on her vocals, but I think it's a lot closer than you think.

The last group is the 'Songs they would release should they win the competition' round. Wait a sec...no idiotic coronation single? Yay. So let's see what cover song they will be releasing as a single. If Lee DeWyze, wins, he's going to cover U 2's 'Beautiful Day'.
The Good - I like the leather jacket as he's trying to channel Bruce Springsteen into his work. He's got that same performance ethic going on. And from an emotional standpoint, he delivers.
The Bad - From a pitch standpoint, he delivered it like he went to the wrong house. I think fatigue got the better of Lee at the end of the night. He was constantly flat in a key that doesn't fit him at all. Ugh.
The Jason - Again...no passion, no energy, boring. Just not there. Those lyrics MEAN something. Not with him singing it however.
The Chico - That's the single? Lee had a golden opportunity to make the song his own. As it is right now, it pales in comparison to the original, and while he sang it on point, he didn't really go anywhere with it. He picked the worst possible moment to hold back. The good news is that he'll have the rest of his life to do what he's only half-done up to this point.
The Verdict - Not exactly how I would end the show if I'm singing for a major contract. Crystal is in position to win the night.

Crystal Bowersox. will release 'Up to the Mountain' if she wins.
The Good - I liked her vocals on this. This was her best vocal performance of the night.
The Bad - It's nice, but it's not mainstream at all. If you're trying to sing a great song that no one's going to vote for, she did a good job at it.
The Jason - And Crystal goes three for three. She sings with FEELING, with passion, with soul. She is a star.
The Chico - Lee picked a bad night to have a bad night... That said, his body of work up to this point has been amazing. He's going to go far in this business. As for right now, in this moment...
The Verdict - Here's what I have to ask myself. If I am buying a single, which one am I going to buy? And more importantly, what is the masses going to buy? This is beautiful to listen to on the radio, but I can't see myself plopping down $5.99 to buy this song, whereas I can see the young kiddies (don't forget, the target demographic) going en masse to buy Lee's generic song. And whereas I think Crystal won the night, I think that song helped her lose the competition.

Overall Verdict: I'm letting Jason and Chico go first this time.

The Jason: I thought people would vote for Lee because he is the better looking person, going past the talent of Crystal. Not after tonight, they won't. Crystal WANTS this bad. Lee was nervous, fumbling and all the stage presence he got over the last weeks went away in one night. He had a very bad night. Crystal was perfect in every thing she did tonight. If Lee wins, it will be a huge shock.

Your new American Idol: Crystal Bowersox.

The Chico: Lee picked a bad night to have a bad night... That said, his body of work up to this point has been amazing. He's going to go far in this business. As for right now, in this moment...

Your next American Idol: CRYSTAL BOWERSOX.

I'll leave you with this thought... This whole season was just lazy. Lazy lazy lazy. Usually I'd say "There's only one American Idol, and America, you've waited long enough." This year, it's more like "America, you've been through enough."

Overall Verdict I completely agree with Chico and Jason. This season goes down as one with the most potential and least overall value. You could have fast-forwarded the show 3 months to the finals and no one would have cared. The producers made so many mistakes with talent and the promoting of the show that t was mind-numbing. You could tell that this is the last season of the show as we know it.

Did Crystal win the night? Yes. Did she win the season? I think not. Over the past 2 seasons, we've seen the favorite take the last month off and see the underdog get more mainstream to win the competition. Lee DeWyze did just that, expanding his base while Crystal went more indie. Does it show us who she is? Yes. Does she win a competition where the winner is decided by the mainstream masses? Nope.

Lee sang the songs tonight to not only his fan base, but the demographics that vote for these things. Crystal sang some beautiful songs to a fan base that just doesn't vote as much as the kiddie teenage girls do. Lee is going to shock the world like Kris did last year and David Cook did the year before by saving their best for the end. My original primer had Lee in the finals but not winning it. I'm guessing I was only off by 1 week.

Projected WINNER: Lee DeWyze

And thus ends the Idol recap. Again, a big thank you to everyone who has read, commented, or in any way has made this column better over the years. And thanks to YesButNoButYes for letting me express my views on this forum.

Join us in 24 hours to see who will be coronated as the American Idol champion.

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