Thursday, May 24, 2007

The Ten Best (And Five Worst) Moments from the American Idol Finale

You can read my recap of the American Idol finale here, but here are my Ten Best and Five Worst moments from last night's show.

Best Moments
1. Blake Lewis jamming with Doug E. Fresh
This was like nothing that has ever been seen on the American Idol stage. Blake finally got to really show off his skills, and the excitement on his face was adorable. Definitely the highlight of the show.

2. Jordin being named the winner and singing "This is My Now"
Sure, there wasn't much suspense, and I didn't cry like I did when Kelly and Fantasia were named winners, but it was moving, nonetheless, to see Jordin's beaming face and the familiar confetti burst at the key change. Another Idol has been crowned.

3. Kelly Clarkson singing "Never Again"
Proving once and for all who the real American Idol is, Kelly growled her way through her fantastic new single. She sounded amazing! And to all those who claimed she was "fat" after "Idol Give Back" -- how 'bout that outfit? Smokin'!

4. Melinda Doolittle singing with Bebe and Cece Wynans
You gotta love Melinda, and you gotta love seeing her jam with the pair who she used to sing back-up for. This girl's gonna do big things.

5. Beatles medley
It was a little drawn out, and neither Taylor or Carrie got the chance to really shine, but Kelly's "Sgt. Pepper" rock-out with Joe Perry was fierce. It would have been cool to see some of the former Idol winners sing together, but this was a nice reminder of the kind of talent the show has produced.

6. Jordin Sparks and Blake Lewis dueting on "I Saw Her Standing There"
Totally playful and charming -- you gotta love these kids.

7. Jordin Sparks and Ruben Studdard dueting on "You're All I Need"
Yes, I wish Jordin had gotten the opportunity to sing with a bigger or more exciting star (Jennifer Hudson was in the audience -- she couldn't be convinced to join in on the festivities?), but they sounded absolutely fantastic together on this song.

8. Green Day singing the John Lennon song
I love Green Day. No more need be said.

9. Top 6 boys singing with Smokey Robinson/Top 6 girls singing with Gladys Knight
I could do without seeing Smokey and Gladys on the Idol stage again, but it was great to see Stephanie, Chris Sligh, and Gina Glocksen, all voted out before they should have been. On the other hand, it was not so great to see Haley or Sanjaya, who stuck around much longer than they should have. It was especially cool to see Gladys Knight flanked by Melinda on one side and LaKisha on the other -- I wish they had gotten the opportunity to do some even more wailing with Gladys.

10. Carrie Underwood singing "I'll Stand By You" -- Not the most exciting performance Carrie has ever given, but very solid, nonetheless. And 6 million albums sold? Wow.

Worst Moments

1. Golden Idol awards -- I hated every single second of these, and they didn't even result in a trainwreck-esque so-horrible-it's-amazing moment like last year's Michael Sandecki/Clay Aiken debacle. Painful.

2. Bette Midler -- Oh Bette, what happened? I've seen the Divine Ms. M in concert, and she is amazing, but this performance sounded terrible and was even more awkwardly interpreted. Bette, Bette, Bette.

3. 10 minute over-run
Luckily I was watching the show live, but if I had Tivo'ed it and discovered I had missed out on the announcement of the winner I would have been pissed. I mean, people spent four months of their time investing in the show and then missed out on the chance to see it all come to a close --not a very respectful way to treat the show's loyal viewers.

4. Sanjaya and Joe Perry -- I never need to see Sanjaya perform again, and I certainly never need to hear him sing "You Really Got Me." I was embarrassed to be watching it, and even more embarrassed for Joe Perry. Luckily he got play for a real musician (Kelly Clarkson) later on in the show.

5. Gwen Stefani -- Totally pointless, and totally uninspired. And not even live? Gimme a break!

Click here for more American Idol News/Commentary


jess said...

other than your assesment of Kelly. ( I can't stand her screetch fest and that's supposed to be her new song? no wonder Clive hates it) I'd have to agree on the finale.

pespada said...

I generally agree with your assessment except for Kelly's song---way too negative and depressing in tone--and Sanjaya's performance--great self-parody and send-up. You need to learn to laugh a little!

Anonymous said...

Was Green Day actually live? Notice Ryan didn't say "Live", and the audience shots were very carefully controlled - it looked like it might have actually been taped earlier. There was a mosh pit in the center, which there wasn't for any other performance (if you look very carefully).

Anonymous said...

I thought Kelly's rendition of St. Pepper was horrendous. She screamed all the way through it. No wonder they never allowed anyone else to sing Beatles songs (they should reinstate that rule pronto)

Carrie's Beatles' song was ocmpletely unrecognizeable. And not in a good way. She totally lost the melody and bored me to tears. Her verion of "I'll Stand by You" was also boring and forgettable (also a little high-pitched and screatchy). I had to turn the sound down.

Taylor, on-the-other-hand did a pretty decent job with a couple of his songs. I was pleasantly surprised.

Melinda was spot-on incredible. In fact, she was better than the female member of Wianans(?).

Gwen was ridiculous -- boring, taped, been-there-done-that. WTF?

The hightlight -- other than Jordin's win -- was undoubtedly GREEN DAY!!!!!!!!!!!! I screamed like a little girl when Ryan announced them.

Anonymous said...

Melinda was by far the best of the current crop--including the two finalists. Melinda, I think, will emerge as this season's Daughtry.

The other strongest performances from the contestants came from Lakisha and, surprise, Brandon, who was voted off far too early.

Jordin and Blake? Yawn.

Anonymous said...

I pretty much agree with your article. Kelly IS a great singer. For those who are not familiar with her talent, try to watch every single performance she has done since during season 1 as well as all the guest spots she has had everywhere. Kelly Clarkson can sing any genre, and makes it her own. When she sings rock (as is her album for this year), it is true rock. When she sings jazz, her voice takes on the smooth, cool jazzy tone, etc. Check out YouTube for some of these performances, especially the "Natural Woman" and "Stuff Like That There" renditions. Try to watch all her shows before passing judgement on a couple of performances. This year's album is about a life story of the toughest times Kelly has experienced. Therefore, it has to sound dark and depressing to reflect that period of her life. There are other darker albums out there.

Additionally, in general, Clive Davis and some other record label producers like to stick to their formulas and are not too liberal with an artist's desire to branch out creatively.

Anonymous said...

Carrie showed how to sing masterfully and Ruben reminded us why he won w/ great vocals and getting Jordin to relax onstage and have fun in her best performance of the evening. And Tony Bennett was great too.