I’ve always been a huge fan of the Idol series (ask any of my friends and they’d complain about the obsession of my Idolmania during secondary school which spanned all the English-speaking, and even some non-English, versions worldwide) and American Idol has always ranked high on my list of the franchises.
This season, however, I’ve been terribly underwhelmed. Normally, by this period (after group performances), I’d have at least a few favourite auditions and some memorable group performances. This year, there wasn’t a single audition that I went “wow!” over (even those the judges heaped praise on were only ok, to me) and the group performances were absolutely, uniformly dreadful.
With that said, though, I still have a few favourites and I really hope that they not only continue to go far, but pick up their game and bring out some amazing performances that can match up to previous seasons’ highlights.
He’s probably one of the favourites right now after pulling out arguably some of the best performances of the season so far (although that isn’t saying much). His audition was pretty good (although I found it slightly overrated), his group performance was one of the passable ones and his acoustic rendition of Paula’s “Straight Up”, as seen above, is probably the best song of the season so far.
Still, I do hope he has more to show because, while he is good compared to his competitors, I don’t think he’s even close to some of the best the show’s had to offer. Plus, I actually subscribed to him on Youtube (he was one of those who constantly put out covers of songs) a few months ago and, while he was good there, I didn’t actually think he was all that great neither.
She’s a black girl who sings country songs (so…a Taylor Swift who can actually sing?) and is all chirpy and cheerful and has a pretty decent voice from what we heard at the auditions and at the first round of Hollywood (which was one of the few standouts for me). She forgot her words in the group round but still went on so here’s hoping she’ll continue to go further.
Another one of the fan favourites (and judges’ too), if I’m not wrong and she did pretty well in all the rounds (in fact, I think Kara tells her in the group round that she might just win the whole thing). She has probably one of the biggest and best voices there and her grandma sob story is so sad it’ll probably help her get through as well.
I think even those who’ve been following this season closely will be like “who?”. While the above video of J.B. isn’t from this season, it’s his audition video from last season and was actually my personal favourite audition of that year. His voice might not be for everyone, but I really liked it a lot and when he got cut in Hollywood in 2009 I was totally gutted. When I saw him in today’s episode (he, Andrew Garcia and Katie Stevens were all in the same group!), looking about twice the size he was last year, I was totally excited (although TBH he wasn’t that fantastic this time round). Hopefully he does well and gets better.
There are a few others who did ok but weren’t all that up to par for me. Janell Wheeler’s ‘American Boy’ was pretty cool but her audition was totally meh for me and Mary Powers has a huge-ass rock voice but seems to totally meh as a person but, in any case, here’s a video of their performances in the first round (it also includes Haeley’s awesome song):
I think I might have forgotten a few here and there (did remember some pretty big voices, which is what I love the most, if you don’t know by now) but so far good performances have been far and few in between and outstanding performances almost non-existent.
Here’s hoping the show will start to do better in the next few weeks!