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MarkHB

S18.E14: On with the Show: Homeward Bound

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Find out who America voted into the Top 10 and whether or not judges choose to use their only save of the season. In this home-themed episode, the judges team up with friends and industry heavyweights to give the finalists a masterclass on what it takes to be a superstar. Plus, Phillip Phillips returns to the Idol stage remotely to open the show with an acoustic performance of his bestselling hit song, “Home.”

 

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Katy looked better dressed as toilet paper.

I'm watching my recording, so I'm only up to Arthur, but so far I'm not really impressed with anyone.

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How clever of Katy to show up in a color-blocked potato sack......complete with two bags of potatoes.

 

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Interesting picks. I might've traded out a couple of the guys for a couple of the girls that didn't make it, but there are some in here that I'm glad to see made it this far. 

"New York State of Mind" got me kinda choked up. That was a good choice of song, both for the theme and to honor the city as a whole. And I liked the Coldplay pick, too-"In My Place" is one of my favorites from that band. 

Also liked JustSam's pick-a nice shoutout to her grandma. Totally understandable reason why she's not with her, of course, but I can imagine it would be tough to be so far away, especially at this time. At least they can keep in touch, though, which is nice :).

It's weird to think that the finale is in two weeks. That's going to make it harder to really get into this whole journey for these top eleven contestants. 

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I voted for Dillon and Jonny.  Get Jonny's girlfriend out of there though; so annoying.

Katie looked bad in that dress.

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Im confused are we watching a live show ?  Are they lip syncing.

I was surprised there were that many girls — does make me wonder.  All the guy singers I like made it with the exception of the singer with the little boy ( I would have traded him for jonnie and his girlfriend )

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5 minutes ago, Diana Berry said:

Im confused are we watching a live show ?  Are they lip syncing.

They're not even trying to do this live. From what folks said last week, they each do three takes: a rehearsal, the official performance that the judges go by, and a third so the producers can get extra camera shots. What we hear is the vocal from the official take, but the producers pick the video mix that gets used.

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I wouldn’t vote for Jonny because of his desperate, clingy girlfriend.  Do they think people want to see her? She’s a sad mess.

i would like to see a woman win this year, if only because they are running two men winners to every woman.  I went back through the list and there were two men winners who I didn’t even remember.

I doubt Katy chooses those costumes.  Someone is designing and creating them and delivering to her door.  

I’m not sure why I’m even watching this anymore. They are doing the best they can from home, but it’s so rushed, they should have waited until the fall.

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We got a pretty even split (6-5), with a judges save....so that was better than I was expecting.

A lot of similar sounding songs from those who moved on. Really only Jovin (who didn't deserve to make the Top 11 solely based on last week's performance) did something resembling an uptempo song. I guess Arthur, by going w/ the reggae influence made Country Roads more uptempo sounding that what it usually is. There was something charming and authentic seeing him perform on his front porch w/ semi's plowing up and down the highways in the middle of a pandemic as his "real-time" backdrop.

I kind of had a feeling the judges would have to use a save to advance one of the quartet of teen pop princesses. I was also pretty convinced that Aliana, Franklin, and DeWayne were toast going into the night, and Kimmy/Faith would've only advanced on a judges save...not through America's vote.

Because we got so many similar sounding songs, I don't really have a lot of standouts tonight outside of Arthur. Just Sam did a nice job and I guess Julia (I'm sorry, ymmv...to me she's always been fodder, she forgot the name of her own original song in Hollywood!! Aack.) did a nice job with New York State of Mind. I'll say those three make it through, plus Grace, plus Louis and Francisco. Maybe the 7th spot comes down to Jovin or Dillon in that case...

That would eliminate Mikayla, Sophia, Johnny (who really did not come close to doing Faithfully justice), and either Jovin or Dillon next week.

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I feel like this should have been titled:  American Idol:  Homeward Bound.

Glad that my three favorites made it though (Arthur, Dillon & Just Sam) and was pleasantly surprised that most of the teeny-bopper crew was eliminated.  I guess it makes sense since they all seemed very similar and probably canceled each other out.  I could do without Luis, Johnny and Makayla, but it's not too bad for a top ten eleven.

Edited by leocadia · Reason: Math is hard
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I miss the old days of eliminating one person each week.   I don't like culling half the herd all at once, and it won't be much better next week.   By sending only one singer home each week gives all the remaining ones chance to redeem themselves after a bad performance in the ensuing weeks.   This format is way too rushed.     

Edited by Ladyrain
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I will miss the duets and group performances. 
 

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Was Phil Phillips there under threat of imprisonment or something?    He couldn't wait to get off that couch and beat it.   He couldn't even be bothered to utter a few words of encouragement to the singers, or Americans, ot anything.    I thought his abrupt departure was odd and disrespectful.

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1 hour ago, MarkHB said:

They're not even trying to do this live. From what folks said last week, they each do three takes: a rehearsal, the official performance that the judges go by, and a third so the producers can get extra camera shots. What we hear is the vocal from the official take, but the producers pick the video mix that gets used.

Wow ty

12 minutes ago, Ladyrain said:

Was Phil Phillips there under threat of imprisonment or something?    He couldn't wait to get off that couch and beat it.   He couldn't even be bothered to utter a few words of encouragement to the singers, or Americans, ot anything.    I thought his abrupt departure was odd and disrespectful.

Lol I missed him

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The girl who sang Somewhere Over the Rainbow hurt my head.  
I like Louis.  But even he fell flat tonight. 

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4 minutes ago, Meowwww said:

The girl who sang Somewhere Over the Rainbow hurt my head.  

Yeah, that performance was a little...much. 

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55 minutes ago, Ladyrain said:

Was Phil Phillips there under threat of imprisonment or something?    He couldn't wait to get off that couch and beat it.   He couldn't even be bothered to utter a few words of encouragement to the singers, or Americans, ot anything.    I thought his abrupt departure was odd and disrespectful.

He smiled before he left.  I think it’s all scripted and planned, even at home.  He did what they asked him to do.

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Who had a reggae version of Country Roads on their bingo card?

I liked absolutely...none of these performances. Over the Rainbow does not need yodeling. And I don't feel like we've really gotten to know their singing styles in depth. What is with this two weeks to the final? They've only just gotten to the top 10 and now it's over? They should spend most of the season cutting down to the finalists like usual, not wasting it with the auditions and selection process. I hate, hate, hate the Green Mile episodes(s), it's just used to fuck with people. The format is what will cause me to skip the next season if they do this again, AI producers if you are listening.

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We could also probably do without these little asides of "incredible insight" or whatever it was Ryan called the advice people were giving the contestants, which pretty much just boiled down to, "Be yourself and know your style." Thanks, Captain Obvious. 

(I also got a kick out of the moment when Bobby was asking one of the contestants about their song choice and said, "It's such a feel good song, why do you think viewers would enjoy it?" Uh, I think you just answered your own question there, buddy.) 

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I loathe all the chatter between Ryan, Bones, blah bah.    Just give me the singers.   And if you feel you have to have "judges", Show, then let them actually JUDGE.    You know - like Simon used to do.    Luke, Lionel and Katy are positively useless if all they're going to do is sprinkle pixie dust all over each contestant, regardless of how horridly they performed.   Simon would have been apoplectic about "Over the Rainbow".   And Paula would have been all, "But on the other hand, you look pretty, sweetie."   Listen up, Idol:    We have ears!   And a volume button on the remote.   We can HEAR them.   And no, they weren't all the next Kelly Clarkson.  Or even Phil Phillips.

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10 hours ago, Diana Berry said:

Im confused are we watching a live show ?  Are they lip syncing.

I addressed this last week, but never got an answer.  It is impossible to get studio-quality sound on your back patio with a highway and what looked like an airport behind you, as Gunn did.

10 hours ago, MarkHB said:

They're not even trying to do this live. From what folks said last week, they each do three takes: a rehearsal, the official performance that the judges go by, and a third so the producers can get extra camera shots.

Where/when did they do the three takes?

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I didn't watch last week because 20 contestants were too many for me to care about, and I didn't watch this week because I decided I didn't care that much anymore, but after reading who made the Top 11, I'm mostly okay with the contestants.  I wouldn't have kept Johnny, Mikayla and Julia, but they aren't terrible either.  I might watch next week.  Or not.

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So, talent-wise, I think we left some of the best on the cutting room floor here. A lot of mediocre balladeers got through while some vastly more-talented women were sent packing.

I know Idol has always been unforgiving to women (Kelly and Carrie being major exceptions), but this format does them no favors either. Grace belts to a fault but she's the only country girl left so she's not splitting votes.

Cyniah, McKayla, Lauren, Olivia, and Kimmy must have all split the diva vote. I think they were some of the best in the competition but they didn't do enough to separate themselves vocally or personality-wise. 
 

This format isn't helping their case, either. Singing in your living room to millions of people is weird. Belting at the top of your lungs makes it even stranger. The setting matters - I miss the big Idol stage. I think it's necessary at this point in the competition - you see who can handle pressure, play to a large crowd, display real stage presence, and fill a space. This? You gotta go low-key and acoustic almost. That's how Louis and Francisco took mediocre, one-note vocals and were voted through. Singing those songs in your living room feels authentic. I think if we'd been on a real Idol stage you'd have seen different results. These kids should be considering context when choosing their songs now. 

I'd have saved Lauren Spencer Smith over McKayla now that she's picked two dud songs in a row, but I can't complain too much because my two top favs, Just Sam and Jovin Webb are through. I'm also a big fan of Dillon James.

I was on the Grace train but... you do NOT do that to Somewhere Over the Rainbow. It's not a "big ol'  voice" song. Grace would have had a real moment had she pulled back, used some dynamics, and sung the original intro, "When all the clouds darken up the skyway..." But who am I kidding? I can't even stand Kat McPhee and she owns that song on Idol. No one ever did a better version than she did. 

I thank the judges for finding a highly talented group, but now I chide them for being useless on critiques. These kids need way more help than what they're being given. And lack of critique is how we ended up losing great voices in the top 10. 

One more time, for any producers reading this stuff: Please take a page from what made Idol successful, and give enough time to get to a top 10 and do one elimination per week. If it means we end up with a final 3 or 4, I can handle that. But culling the her like this is so pointless. No one has any room to grow. 

Did Alejandro win last season? Do they hate Laine? Why is the winner never mentioned and Alejandro is making cameos and being tongue-bathed constantly? I love Alejandro but this puzzles me. 

Edited by thesupremediva1
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11 hours ago, Ladyrain said:

Was Phil Phillips there under threat of imprisonment or something?

Right! That was my fave part of the show lol.

47 minutes ago, thesupremediva1 said:

This? You gotta go low-key and acoustic almost. 

That's probably why I'm enjoying it. I much prefer a more low-key, acoustic performance. Plus, I can actually hear the singers now instead of pretty much only being able to hear the band!

I wasn't a fan of pretty much any of these song choices so I was bored most of the night this time. I loved Arthur doing Country Roads and I enjoyed New York State of Mine but other than that it was all very boring for me.

I just start this at like 9 and then fast forward through all the judges comments so that makes it a much more enjoyable show. I wish I could fast forward through Bobby Bones but I wanna hear more from the contestants themselves so I can't. Bobby Bones seems drugged though so that's kinda funny lol.

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2 hours ago, Babalooie said:

Where/when did they do the three takes?

Sometime during the week, probably all on the same day to make it as fair at possible. Long day for the band, though.

But yeah, if the best part of the show for you is the performance shows and the voting... This format isn't delivering. Even if they had the two extra weeks back that they lost to virus prep, it's still horribly truncated. But the show isn't providing 15 of the Top 20 individual broadcasts of the season anymore, either.

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3 minutes ago, MarkHB said:

Sometime during the week, probably all on the same day to make it as fair at possible. Long day for the band, though.

Thanks, Mark.  It was really bugging me.   I'm a singer and could tell that obviously they were lip-synching.  OTOH, it didn't take Sherlock Holmes to figure that out.  🙂

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1 hour ago, thesupremediva1 said:

These kids should be considering context when choosing their songs now. 

Yes, and IMO, they should be singing familiar songs.

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2 hours ago, Babalooie said:

Yes, and IMO, they should be singing familiar songs.

No thanks (jmo). If they want to do a well-thought-out reinterpretation of an oldie-like Arthur and Jonny did last night- that's really interesting to me. But yet another 'Over the Rainbow' (done diva-style, of course)? Nope.

I never heard of 'Grandma's Hands' before this season, and I'll be OK never hearing it again. Some of the dumbest lyrics ever ('Grandma's hands- boy, they really came in handy' 🙄), although Sam did a good job with it anyhow.

I feel so sorry for these kids. So many good singers, and they have zero chance of enough exposure to get to ALEXANDRO!!! level.

 

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I was disappointed Olivia was cut and they kept Grace. Over The Rainbow? Really? And maybe its me, but a reggae version of Country Roads just didn't work for me. I do applaud Arthur for trying it however. And I hope this will be the last we see of Jonny. That version of Faithfully was lame. But all in all, a pretty good top 10.

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I kept waiting for Ryan when they picked their 11 that the rest would "Go to Bed" since they are technically home. 

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5 hours ago, thesupremediva1 said:

I thank the judges for finding a highly talented group, but now I chide them for being useless on critiques.

I think that the producers tell judges which singers to pick. The questions the kids are asked are too scripted.

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5 hours ago, thesupremediva1 said:

Did Alejandro win last season? Do they hate Laine? Why is the winner never mentioned and Alejandro is making cameos and being tongue-bathed constantly? I love Alejandro but this puzzles me. 

I could never understand the OTT support they gave Alejandro already last year so I am perplexed by this as well.

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I thought most of the performances were fairly good, without anybody really standing out. I did kind of miss having more uptempo songs.   But given the format, it makes that most contestants went with slower songs.

This does make it difficult to pick which four I would eliminate.  But judging on just this week's performances, two of them should be Dillon for his lackluster cover of Yesterday and Grace for that mess of she made of Somewhere Over the Rainbow.

After that its purely subjective.  The performances I enjoyed the most were from Julia, Jonny, Makayla, and maybe Arthur.   So I hope those four stay for at least another week.

 

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10 hours ago, MarkHB said:

Sometime during the week, probably all on the same day to make it as fair at possible. Long day for the band, though.

But yeah, if the best part of the show for you is the performance shows and the voting... This format isn't delivering. Even if they had the two extra weeks back that they lost to virus prep, it's still horribly truncated. But the show isn't providing 15 of the Top 20 individual broadcasts of the season anymore, either.

So are the judges hearing the singer’s version ( with studio manipulation, lip syncing,etc) for the first time when we see it on Sunday?

I was watching the zoom screen and my eyes were focused on Dillion when it was down to 2 and he held up two fingers and it looked like his reaction matched.  So on Sunday , I take it the zoom shots are live or at least taken at the same time ?  

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On ‎5‎/‎3‎/‎2020 at 8:34 PM, Ladyrain said:

Was Phil Phillips there under threat of imprisonment or something?    He couldn't wait to get off that couch and beat it.   He couldn't even be bothered to utter a few words of encouragement to the singers, or Americans, ot anything.    I thought his abrupt departure was odd and disrespectful.

That appeared to be by design.  It's cold open at the start of the show where it's assume viewers know the performer without an introduction.  His role was to introduce the theme of the night and to  highlight the contestants.  This was about them as it should be.  He's already won. 

Edited by escape
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Yes, but I still found it odd that he hightailed it out of there the way he did.   I don't think he's enamored of Idol.   Didn't he sue them to get out of his post-win contract or something?

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2 hours ago, Diana Berry said:

So are the judges hearing the singer’s version ( with studio manipulation, lip syncing,etc) for the first time when we see it on Sunday?

I was watching the zoom screen and my eyes were focused on Dillion when it was down to 2 and he held up two fingers and it looked like his reaction matched.  So on Sunday , I take it the zoom shots are live or at least taken at the same time ?  

I believe you're correct, from what I've read.   The show is trying as best it can to make things as analogous to a live show as they can.    The singers performances are pre-recorded, but everything after that is live and spontaneous as it can be, given the odd situation everyone is in.

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18 hours ago, ichbin said:

I could never understand the OTT support they gave Alejandro already last year so I am perplexed by this as well.

I often wonder if perhaps Alejandro DID win last year, but declined first place. I seem to recall that he bailed out of a trip to NY to be on Ryan's show because he had a fear of flying. Maybe they all agreed that his being the American Idol wouldn't be positive experience for him (or the show). Regardless, it seems like Laine has received little love from AI, which is a weird way to treat a winner.

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Oh man I didn't realize they were rushing this season this fast!  You'd think if they bothered to send out all that equipment and figure out the weirdo logistics, they might as well keep it going for at least a few more weeks.

And, look, many of these kids are obnoxious and I'm already tired of hearing the same stories from the same people each week, even for contestants that I like!  (Oh that's the one who can't stop talking about grandma, that's the one with the clingy girlfriend, that's the one whose friend committed suicide, etc etc)  but I feel bad for them nonetheless.  Imagine finally, FINALLY, making it this far... just to be pushed through as quickly as possible and forgotten by July.  

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14 hours ago, Diana Berry said:

So are the judges hearing the singer’s version ( with studio manipulation, lip syncing,etc) for the first time when we see it on Sunday?

This probably falls under "that's for the producers to know and us never to find out," but my hope is that the judges see the "official" take clean, and the spliced video is just for the broadcast.

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On ‎05‎/‎04‎/‎2020 at 11:32 AM, Babalooie said:

Yes, and IMO, they should be singing familiar songs.

I prefer it when they sing less familiar songs which suit their voices.  I don't want to hear the same damn songs over and over.

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I'm surprised nobody brought this up, but to me, this crystalized that nobody was watching this show from 8-9PM. Eight of ten were from the 9-10PM hour (Louis and Jovin were the only exceptions). The last five who performed all made it in. Whether they were really the five best, the producers wanted to push them or people just didn't watch until then, it's fascinating. I remember discussing "the death slot" (first) and "the pimp spot" (last) on Idol, but 8-9 ended up being a death ... hour.

(And does Mikayla really spell her name like that? I'm going to get Survivor misspelled voting flashbacks. Mi-kay-la.)

Edited by Eolivet
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I didn't watch the 2 filler episodes or the at home ones; is this crap even worth finishing? The thumbnails on American Idol's YouTube channel look as if they're amateurs doing YouTube covers; hardly compelling to click on.

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It's actually been surprisingly well done. The Voice had their first 'live' show and it was terrible even though they are doing almost exactly the same thing.

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