An open letter to America
Thank you for ruining my favorite show.
OK. Maybe I’m exaggerating a little bit. “American Idol” isn’t my favorite show, but it comes pretty close. Unfortunately, that’s not true anymore. “Idol” stole my heart during my senior year of high school, two years ago, when the writers’ strike destroyed the television landscape and took all my precious scripted shows away from me. Since then, I have longed for Tuesdays to arrive more quickly just so I can see my favorites sing yet again. I thought season 9 would be the same. Boy, was I wrong.
Way back in January, before the live shows started, the judges declared it was going to be a girl’s year this year. After two years in a row of having a guy win the crown, it was time for a change. These claims to “the year of the girl” seem funny now, considering what has happened since the top 12 were announced. It all started over spring break, Thursday night. I was in New York seeing “The Lion King” on Broadway when I received a text from my mom. All it said was “Lilly, Katelyn, Todrick, Alex,” and I became scared. These people were the four contestants eliminated just short of making the final top 12. Lilly Scott and Katelyn Epperly were both eclectic but amazing vocalists. Without these two women, I knew the year of the girl was coming to an end. Alex Lambert, another contestant who was eliminated that night, also deserved a spot far more than other men who made it through.
On Wednesday night, the top 10 became a top nine. Since the finals began, a woman has been eliminated every week. “The year of the girl” now has three female contestants and six male contestants left. How ironic. I’m not saying the women who have been eliminated did not deserve to go home. They all did. But I’m pretty sure most of the men deserved to go home even more. (What can I say? This season is severely lacking in talent.) There’s Tim Urban, who has been in the bottom three for three weeks in a row and cannot sing on key. He gets by on his hair, abs and smile. I can’t remember when “American Idol” turned into a Zac Efron look-alike contest. There’s 16-year-old Aaron Kelly, who actually sings on key but fails to connect emotionally with his material. There’s Andrew Garcia, who performed one amazing song during Hollywood Week and hasn’t really been good since.
This season isn’t an epic fail, though. Not yet, anyway. Lee DeWyze single-handedly saves the guys with his laid-back rock vibe and an amazing recording voice. There are two girls left whom I kind of love and who still have a chance to win. Siobhan Magnus is a female version of Adam Lambert (though with much less vocal precision) and Crystal Bowersox, my pick to win it all, is really the standout contestant of the season. Her folk-rock guitar-goddess vibe works every time, and she nails every performance. So yeah, “American Idol” may not entirely suck this year. But please, America, get it right and vote Tim out next week? I promise I’ll love you.