Monday, January 21, 2008

Top Idol moments so far

Here are my favorite contestants and top moments from Philadelphia and Dallas. I've gotta say, Dallas in particularly was highly entertaining--don't know about you, but I'm cautiously optimistic that Idol won't be as much of a chore to watch this year.

-Drew Poppelreiter, farm boy
Unlike Simon apparently, I've always liked George Strait--Drew's voice was compelling, a pleasure to listen to. And, like Kellie Pickler, he was just authentic enough to not come across as hokey; plus his family seemed really nice.

-Kady Milloy, impressions girl
It doesn't hurt that she's easy on the eyes, but her Unchained Melody was pretty good. From a singing standpoint I wouldn't agree with Simon that she was super-talented, but I do think as a package she's the perfect AI contestant and is likely to be there at the end.

-Chris Watson, dreads
Nice, calm, soft-spoken but confident guy who lives and breathes music and can really sing--there's one every year, and I agree with Simon that chicks will dig him. I always like it when the contestants show up with their families like Chris did, it's affirmation that they're not crazy.

-Kristy Lee Cook, cage fighter
I mean, how can you not like her?! She lives in a log cabin, sells horses, can defend herself, is totally sincere--how long until she and Drew get together in Hollywood? All that, and she can sing; I think she's one of the darkhorses to win it all, there's something about her that makes you root for her to make it.

-Brooke White, never seen an R-rated movie
Just one of those people you like--has a nice purity to her voice, maybe from all that clean living. Not sure I see her as an Idol finalist, but thought it was hilarious how she just kept brushing the hair of that crazy Princess Leah chick while making shocked expressions at the stuff coming out of her mouth. Too bad Brooke's married, otherwise she could make a great duo with Dallas' never-been-kissed boy.

-Nina Shaw, tall, leggy woman
She's one of those no-nonsense, mature, talented singers Idol produces every year; I think Randy nailed it when he said she was throwback, but in that retro cool way. Unfortunately, I don't think she'll win and she may not even make it out of Top 12 women. It really isn't just a singing competition; the ones who are well-adjusted and real adults make us smile, but don't drive us to redial a billion times.

-Beth Stalker, Michigan mother
Idol's producers aptly ran her after the crazy Paula-stalker guy; I liked her old-fashioned Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered--we've seen Frank Sinatrish guys, why not a classics-singing woman?

-Colton Swon, country boy with the belt buckle
I agree with Simon that he's one of a dozen, but I just found him likeable, even with the silly hair. This year's Bucky, I guess; look forward to hearing more.

-Pia 'Zpia' Easley, mohawak girl
I think she could be a real darkhorse in the competition--she's interesting, has good confidence but no arrogance, and of course can sing. Plus, how can you not like someone with a nickname of Zpia?!

-Maybe the funniest thing a contestant has ever said on Idol
In Dallas, when one of the transsexual contestants said: "Here's a picture of me as a guy; here's me as a girl--so I just want to show you guys that I'm ver-sa-tile."

Ha! You really can't argue with that logic... except would he be Top 12 guys, or Top 12 girls?

-This year's William Hung (but better)
The guy everyone's talking about is Renaldo Lapuz (the guy in white), who closed out Dallas. That song he wrote, We're Brothers Forever, is surprisingly catchy--the remix below is great, it even synchs up Paula's wild dancing at the end.

And just another indication of how wide a net American Idol casts, here's Sports Illustrated writer Peter King's take on AI:

Broke a lifetime streak last week. Started watching American Idol the other night, and loved it. Never thought I would, but the show is a riot. And when I walked into the Packer locker room Friday, Koren Robinson was signing that Renaldo Lapuz You Are My Brother song. "Can't get it out of my head,'' he said.

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