"American Idol" Season 10, Episode 2

1/22/2011 Posted by Admin

"American Idol" Season 10, Episode 2

Television Review

By our guest blogger, Catherine Fuentes

It seems like New Orleans really brought the talent, although in an hour-long episode in a season that so far has really seemed to emphasize the good performances rather than the comically bad, I’m really not terribly surprised.

The judges continued to jive well with each other – they seem to be having plenty of fun, and while Thursday Steven and Jennifer were better at giving a quick, firm no to the deserving auditions, the judges seem to be having fun with each other. It seems that the spirit of the season is positivity – which is good, since it makes those bad auditions extra-hilarious, and it also makes the rare zinger dismissal lines especially biting.

My only real complaint this season is the audition song choices so far. Is there an "Idol" audition songbook, or something? Every single person is picking some cliché audition song like “Hallelujah” and doing nothing interesting with it. Is singing anything remotely contemporary shunned this early in the competition? Seeing the 16-year-olds singing songs from way before their time is starting to feel a little stale and it’s only night two.

A high point of tonight: showing all bad auditions via montage. Somehow this makes them more bearable and funny – and the bonus is that it allows the really bad ones to stand out. Because let’s be honest, the part of the audition episodes that gets old quickest are the bad-but-not-funny auditions.

And now to run down the contestants:

My favorites: Brett Lowenstern, the bushy red haired 16-year-old, who had a Glee-esque epiphany recently to ignore bullying and just be his own person. Turns out, being his own person is really, really good. The quality of his voice as he sang “Bohemian Rhapsody” was nothing like I would’ve guessed, and I am so happy with that. Not shockingly, my other favorite of the night was 15-year-old Jacee Badeaux, who sang “Sitting on the Dock of The Bay.” Anything Otis Redding is fine by me, but really, this kid has a beautiful voice unlike anything I’ve ever heard on the show before. Of course, he’s also only 15 and his voice may or may not have changed yet, but Jacee was adorable, polite and ridiculously talented. On Wednesday, I said to keep an eye on the young guys, and I am even more emphatic in that plea tonight.

Justin Bieber, watch out.

The good: Paris Tassin, the young mom to a special needs child. Two episodes down and I’m already starting to tune out the sad back stories, but she’s someone I just wish the best for. She got points in my book for choosing to sing something contemporary – Carrie Underwood’s hit “Temporary Home,” which has special meaning to her – and she sang it well. It’s admittedly too country for my tastes, but she was the best female of the night. Jordan Dorsey sang a fun arrangement of “Over the Rainbow” that gave J. Lo chills and also gave Steven Tyler a reason to bop around in his seat (as if he needed one). Jacquelyn Dupree brought some hometown memories to Randy Jackson, as she came to the audition armed with photos of a young Randy and his former football coach, who, in a perfect "Idol" small world, was the contestant’s uncle. Sarah Sellers has some big, Steven Tyler-like lips, and a really nice tone to her voice. I love when females audition with a song traditionally performed by a male, because it requires them to put a spin on it rather than merely mimicking the original. I feel like I can easily hear her voice on the radio, which is really what the show is all about.

The good who need to up their game in Hollywood week: Jovany Barreto was good, but he needs to snap out of his awe of breathing the same air of Jennifer Lopez and really step up to the plate. He sang a Spanish song really well, but the novelty of praising Jennifer (and flashing his chest to her along with the male judges) can no longer be his most endearing factor.

The bad: Alex Attardo, an alum of an Idol sponsored singing camp, who was ridiculously bad. How embarrassing… he was essentially trained by people somehow affiliated with "American Idol," and an original judge was suggesting the camp be closed for training someone so bad. Gabriel Franks chose to sing Lady Gaga’s “Bad Romance," but his performance was off key and peppered with crazy eye gazes toward the judges’ panel.

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