American Idol
Eighth Worst Eliminated

Episode Report Card
Jacob Clifton: A+ | Grade It Now!
But He Breaks Just Like a Little Consumptive

We do another dramatic run through all the amazing things that we're meant to understand happened last night, and as usual it's probably going to be the high point of the night. Whoever puts these things together at the beginning, they don't get paid enough. I mean, probably they get paid enough. But that shouldn't stop us wishing them well.

Ryan: "An amazing number of votes that don't mean anything happened!"
ibid., in a rare moment of gnosis: "...But that doesn't lessen the pain of elimination."

ibid., words fitting awkwardly in his mouth: "We have a sick performance from Rihanna tonight!"


I like the music of the band okay, as far as I know, but I don't particularly care for the lead singer -- she seems like a weirdo -- and especially not the name. They are the Cougar Town of contemporary crossover country. But any song as self-hating and simultaneously booty-calling as "Need You Now" shows a bit more insight, or else I just identify with it more, than most. Mostly I just wish they could do a performance without her dressing up like a clockwork ballet creature or a Bigfoot or whatever. An a-hole.

This song Scotty and Lauren are singing, "American Honey," is not one of those songs. However, the squatting dance of Scotty is fun, and the fact that he's just at this point firing those gross sex faces into the crowd at random like a sex-face psycho shooter, and their very pretty harmonies, all of those things are nice. Watching Scotty and Lauren pretend to like each other makes me feel a little nervous, frankly. They are some of the least trustworthy people on TV, and I don't even think they know it.


Since we've been clamoring for more background information on the weekly Ford Focus commercial, the Idols oblige. Everybody looks totally scary and almost recognizable, dressed like zombies.

Well, almost everybody. Paul McDonald looks strangely healthful.

After we watch the video about the video, we watch the video. It's kind of boring, to the tune of that "Animal" song the Warblers sang, and then the zombies show up and it gets more boring. Then the zombies listen to tunes on a USB drive, and it's 2011 suddenly.

I fucking hate zombie things. Not only is an attraction to the macabre a sign of a culture on the decline, but also what it feeds. Number one, I hate any apocalypse because it implies that you would be relieved if the world ended and you didn't have to answer your cell phone anymore, which is stupid and lazy and you should already have more control over your life than that, and if you honestly don't feel in charge of your technology and responsibilities, that's on you. You are the only person in charge of how awesome things are right now.

Number two, especially I hate zombie apocalypses, because they imply that other people are an obstruction to you getting through your day and would be better off getting shot through the head. The sweet release of just opening fire on a crowd of people because they're not as special and alive as you are: That is disgusting. That is actual misanthropy disguised as entertainment, appealing to the grossest things inside you, and I hate it. Hate it more than slam poetry, more than steampunk, more than pirates.

The zombie thing is both the worst thing about us right now, and an indicator of even worse things about us, and to illustrate this, I will ask you to mentally think about the people you know that love zombies the most. Not the girls who pretend to like zombies and video games so boys will think they've found a unicorn, because those girls are worthless anyway; not the AMC dads or Twilight moms who are trying to be down with the kids these days. They have no effect on culture whatsoever.

I'm talking about your nerdy grumpy jerkoff friend who likes porn and zombies and dark shock-humor and hates women because he's scared of them and loves Tyrion Lannister more than anything and thinks his sarcasm is a defense or that being a cynic opts you out: That asshole. That's who you're being when you play along with the zombie bullshit. Don't do it. It's bad for the part of you that is still alive.


Casey and Haley do their growly grumbly jazzy wiggly shimmy-dance and it's enjoyable to the degree that you can handle any of that kind of thing. I like looking at Casey, and I like Haley's intense makeup and cute dress, and the idea that they just happen to be singing this song together and scatting together and jamming and digging on each other, that's kind of fun to watch. Kind of, for a minute, but then it's just a whole yodeling growling scatting meltdown that sounds kind of like a rumble between Beanie Babies, and we out.

Tyler: "You just summed up what I always knew, that's all you guys did tonight."
(Waiting on clarification? Don't bother. Apparently since he always knew it, we are just fucked for not having always known it. I love how Steven Tyler manages to be cryptic and up his own asshole at the same time. We are not necessary for this part. But then, neither is he.)
Tyler: "Thank you for whipping that out on us."
Randy: "Ha! Like a penis!"

The two duets of safe people are summoned to the Seal, and we review:

Casey: Told the useless pervert mentors to fuck themselves, and the Judges pretended it was awesome, and Steven Tyler once again manages to somehow make this about him and his ability to say nonsense words.

Haley: Sang "Call Me" and Steven only paid attention during the chorus, while J. Lo and Randy actually knew what the fuck they were talking about.

Lauren: Moved Steven Tyler "beyond tears" with "The Climb," which was beyond boring.

Scotty: Is not as cute as he thinks he is.

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American Idol




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