Idolatry comes to the V
American Idol stars are here and it’s too late to vote them off
I preface this with
this fair warning: I am an Idol-maniac.
I’m not sure how it
happened. I blame it on my roommates who have watched since season one.
I swear I only signed on during season three, when Fantasia blew me away
and Jon S. made me laugh with his rendition of Elton John’s “Crocodile
Rock.” So I have no memory of Reuben or Kelly. But I know all about
Carrie, Bo, Constantine and the ever-persistent Anthony.
Now that I’ve set the
record straight, let’s get to work. The idols are coming, which means
we’ve got to remind ourselves who these lovable, yet forgettable,
characters are. There are 10 coming, for better or for worse. Are you
ready? First up is your champion:
Carrie Underwood, Checotah, Okla. Winner.
Carrie’s a good ol’
country gal. She can sing damn fine but she can’t dance to save her
life. Simon had a thing for this blond Oklahoman babe from the start,
and his prediction of her winning became reality. Country was her
strong suit, particularly songs like “Man, I Feel Like a Woman.”
George Michael and (sigh) Kelly Clarkson.
Other talents: Plays
guitar, piano, and would like to be a drummer of a rock band.
Fun fact: Carrie can’t
buy underwear. Hmm.
Bice, Helena, Ala. Ousted on May 25.
Bo was the rocker who
cracked the American Idol mold (with the help of Constantine) and nearly
took the prize (perhaps for his career he’s blessed to be runner-up).
Bo proved he can perform like a true star, with the voice, the energy
and the soul. This southern rocker nailed some tough southern rock gems,
such as “Whipping Post.”
Matchbox twenty and Sheryl Crow. (My God, Matchbox Twenty? Jeez, and to
think, I just praised him.)
Piano, guitar, bass, sax, harmonica.
Fun fact: He loves to
Trevose, Pa. Ousted on May 11.
Well, Fedorov bored and
amazed me at how long he lasted. I’m not sure who voted for him, but
whoever it was, I’m coming after you. He barely sang well, moved like a
wet blanket in the wind, and had the personality of a chess junky (not
that there’s anything wrong with chess). Sure, he may be nice, but he’s
not an idol. My faith in America was returned when he was ousted on May
11. I can’t even pick a song he nailed during the contest, but he’ll
be fun to watch.
Favorite artists: Marc
Anthony and Mariah Carey, but he’s also an N’Sync fan. Are any of us
surprised by this?
Other talents: He’s a
sports nut. Now that is surprising.
Fun fact: His favorite
judge is Simon, (yeah, right), and he tripped on the carpet at his
auditions in Cleveland after learning he was going to Hollywood
Vonzell Solomon, Fort
Meyers, Fla. Ousted on May 18.
She was everybody’s
sweetheart, but her smile didn’t work. Something about Vonzell (mail
carrier by day) didn’t connect enough with the crowd. She had talent,
but it was shaky and inconsistent, and sometimes she smiled too much.
Yeah, we know you’re happy, but just sing, why don’t you?! Song she
nailed — “Chain of Fools,” I suppose.
Favorite artists: Usher
and Beyonce. (With those idols, why didn’t she dance more?)
Other talents: Martial
arts and softball.
Fun fact: Her favorite
judge was Randy.
Skott Savol, Shaker Heights, Ohio. Ousted on May 4.
I think people were
hoping Mr. Savol would be the next Reuben Stoddard, but he choked. He
had promise, and had the “screw Idol, I’m better than this” mentality,
but instead of pressing with the gangster edge, he supplied us with a
lovely array of less-than-manly tunes such as “Against All Odds” and
“Ain’t Too Proud To Beg.” Yikes.
Favorite male artist:
Other talents: Used to
Fun fact: Skott’s
proudest moment was the birth of his son.
Constatine Maroulis, New York, N.Y. Ousted on April 27.
Constatine was the
surprise of the competition for two reasons. It was amazing he lasted so
long after some initial horrid performances. But he did stay, and
suddenly it seemed he was unstoppable. His hair, rocker attitude (though
Bo was much more rock than him) and signature stare into the camera
(that bordered on creepy) made him a favorite. His rendition of
“Bohemian Rhapsody” was truly surprising and good. But the other
surprise was the night he got ousted. Oh well, only one rocker was going
to make it to the end anyway.
Favorite artists: Jim
Morrison and Janis Joplin.
Other talents: Would
like to be a pro athlete if not a professional singer.
Fun fact: He owns Like
a Virgin by Madonna.
Anwar Robinson, Orange, N.J. Ousted on April 20.
It seemed at first that
Anwar had the best natural talent as a singer of anyone else in the
competition. His dread locks and wardrobe kept him looking cool in the
spotlight; too bad he couldn’t stay cool under the pressure. He was as
inconsistent as they come, including singing a less-than-impressive
“Moon River” late in the competition. Earlier in the competition he
probably would’ve nailed it.
Stevie Wonder and Patti LaBelle.
Other talents: piano.
Fun fact: His lucky
charm is a teddy bear, named Tenderheart, that his seventh-grade
students gave him.
Nadia Turner, Miami, Fla. Ousted on April 13.
Nadia had talent and
spunk but her attitude was too stand-offish. Her song choices hurt her,
but her style (and various hair escapades) kept us entertained. With
better song choices she could’ve made it further, and she certainly
still has a chance of making it in the business. She had good
performances regularly, like with “I’m The Only One,” but she never
truly blew us away.
Prince and Tina Turner (not related to her).
Other talents: dancing,
Fun fact: She’s an avid
Nikko Smith, Town &
Country, Mo. Ousted April 6.
Nikko got a second
chance at life when Mario Vasquez (who probably would’ve made it pretty
far) opted out of the top 12 competition. Vasquez out, Smith in. In my
opinion he never gave a good performance, but I know others who
disagree. He had a style like Bell Biv Devoe and Jodeci, just not the
talent. His song choices in theory were great, like “Georgia on My Mind”
and “Let’s Get It On,” but he wasn’t ready for those challenges.
Favorite artists: Mario
Other talents: Nikko
has a background in martial arts.
Fun fact: Related to
Ozzy Smith (St. Louis Cardinal shortstop legend).
Jessica Sierra, Tampa, Fla. Ousted on March 30.
Jessica got knocked out
of the competition exactly when she should have been. It could be argued
whether she was good enough for the top 12. But she made it, and stayed
just long enough for all of us to realize she didn’t have the goods. Her
voice can be strong, although all too often it was all over the place. I
can just hear Randy say, “I don’t know, it was just aaiight [sic] for
me. Just aaiight,” Songs like “The Boys Are Back In Town” remind me of a
Favorite artists: Elton
John and Christina Aguilera.
Other talents: None,
according to her.
Fun fact: She owns the
Wiggles’ The Top Ten Wiggly Wiggly Tunes.