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The state of American Idol Season 9

March 29, 2010

Last week, my TIVO forgot to record American Idol on the most important night for the show and the contestants as to who made the top 10.  The top 10 will go on tour for the next year and will actually be able to pursue their dreams as a singer.  The problem is, do we care?  For all of the drama and selection of the top 24, this is probably the weakest top 10 in the history of American Idol.  I have this feeling that the mass voters and the people who actually spend money on the artists and have something to say about American Idol are two completely different groups of people.

It’s still hard to believe that we lost Lily Scott, Katelyn Epperly, Todrick Hall and Alex Lambert just a few weeks ago!  Anyone of these 4 contestants (I won’t even go into people who should have made the top 24) should have made the top 10 over some less than notable contestants like Katie Stevens and Tim Urban.  These two are prime examples of contestants that have made it through on their appeal to connect to the audience because they’re cute.  This doesn’t mean they will be successful.  I can go a step further and say that Kris Allen had it all, looks and the voice, but look what happened to him.  I know more people that remember him as the guy on the FORD commercial than the actual winner of American Idol!

So who do we care about?  Crystal Bowersox is in a league on her own but i don’t see her selling out arenas or stadiums.  Maybe Lilith Fair or other music festivals.  Let’s be serious? she is more suited to a chair and her guitar/harmonica which doesn’t suit a huge venue.  Aaron Kelly is probably the only one this season who can succeed win or lose because there aren’t a lot of young MALE (i have to put that in caps before someone yells Taylor Swift) country singers under the age of 18! So he could definitely jump in next to Taylor and start a young Country revolution.  Who else, Siobhan Magnus?  Crazy mad scream at the end, that works and doesn’t work…she can’t just do that in every song or we’d get bored.  Michael Lynche? Okay Ruben Studdard 2.0 with a lot of personality and vocals.. but how does he fit in the already saturated rnb/hip hop market! Everyone else has a comparable counterpart to previous Idol seasons and i don’t see any Kelly’s, Adam’s, Carrie’s or Jennifer’s!

This season is a whole lot of been there done that and the dynamics of the judges isn’t helping at all.  The four completely different personalities just don’t work together causing a lot of mixed reviews and confusion for both the contestants and the viewers.  Ellen is focused on the comedy, Kara is focused on the meaning of the lyrics, Randy is confused, and Simon is the only person who says it as it is whether it hurts the contestant or not.  I don’t even know how the judging will move forward without him.  At the end of the day, American Idol will continue to be the number 1 show on TV…until of course X-Factor comes to us in the fall of 2011!!!

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If you didn’t already know…

March 28, 2010

  • Ticket prices for the latest 3d epic How To Train Your Dragon when up as much as 26%!
  • Rumor has it that the evil Queen from Sleeping Beauty Maleficent will be turned into a movie possibly directed by Tim Burton and starring Angelina Jolie as the wicked fairy god mother
  • Fox cancels 24!
  • Worldwide a 3d film has occupied the top spot in the box-office charts for 12 straight weeks (Avatar – 8 weeks, Alice In Wonderland 4 weeks)
  • Lady Gaga reaches the top spot with her debut album, The Fame (Monster) for the first time in its 64th week!! on the world charts
  • Sony Music Entertainment has blocked Beyonce’s youtube page due to a copyright infringement case involving her label
  • Justin Bieber’s album, My World 2.0 is expected to top the Billboard charts this coming week to the tune of 225,000 – 250,000!
  • Gossip blogger Perez Hiton announces he will be launching a weekly music countdown to rival Ryan Seacrest’s current version.
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United World Charts April 3

March 28, 2010

“After moving into the number 1 spot last week, Rihanna extends her stay for another week.  Lady Gaga and Beyonce are up 3 to number 2 while Justin Bieber also climbs 3 to number 5.  Climbing into the top 10 is B.O.B. up 4 spots while Black Eyed Peas and Imma Be drops out of the top 10.”

Singles Chart:

1.  Rihanna – Rude Boy (2nd week at number 1)
2.  Lady Gaga feat. Beyonce – Telephone
3.  Ke$ha – Tik Tok
4.  Lady Gaga – Bad Romance
5.  Justin Bieber feat. Ludacris – Baby
6.  Jason DeRulo – In My Head
7.  Train – Hey, Soul Sister
8.  Taio Cruz feat. Ludacris – Break Your Heart
9.  Owl City – Fireflies
10. B.O.B feat Bruno Mars – Nothin’ On You

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Weekend Update March 26-28

March 26, 2010

“3d cinema has arrived in full force.  This weekend, the Dreamworks flick How To Train Your Dragon will surely end Alice In Wonderlands 3 week reign atop the box-office chart.  Also opening this weekend is the comedy about time travel Hot Tub Time Machine.  Both films have good reviews and are the two films to see this weekend.  Also opening this weekend is the drama Chloe about an untrusting wife who hires an escort to seduce her husband.  ”

How To Train Your Dragon, Hot Tub Time Machine

Watch It

Chloe

Netflix It (This movie has an interesting premise and with all of the drama surrounding the Tiger Woods and Jesse James scandal, people may be interested in this film, however, if you hire an escort to seduce your husband, you are adding insult to injury)

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Weekend Update March 18-21

March 18, 2010

“After a huge opening weekend and a respectable drop last week, Alice In Wonderland has all but secured itself a third weekend at Number 1.  American audiences are thirsty for 3d.  Unfortunately for 3 big entries this week, one of them will have to settle for a high of 2nd.  Most likely to take that spot is the action comedy by Gerard Butler and Jennifer Aniston, The Bounty Hunter.  It seems funny and if you are a fan of either, this one is for you.  Also debuting this week is the best-selling illustrated novel, The Diary of a Wimpy Kid and sci-fi action Repo Man featuring Jude Law and academy award-winner Forest Whitaker.  Also opening in smaller release is the 3d Imax release, Hubble narrated by Leonardo DiCaprio, as well as the Runaways, fresh of its release at the Sundance Film Festival about the legendary rock girl group featuring a grown-up Dakota Fanning and Twilights Kristen Stewart.  Lot’s of choices this week!”

The Bounty Hunter, The Runaways, Hubble 3D (Considering it’s in Imax, you don’t have a choice!)

Watch It

The Diary of a Wimpy Kid

Netflix It (Somehow in the trailer when the mom says, “Have a great day sweetie pie”, it kind of reminded me of the new show on NBC, Parenthood, in a similar scene.  Looks cute, but wait til it goes on DVD)

Repo Man

Forget It (The concept is interesting, but it ends there.  If you are a Jude Law or Forest Whitaker fan then by all means.  If not, you will probably leave feeling you just wasted 111 minutes of your time)

Update: As of this afternoon (March 18) Fandango is reporting that 43% of its sales for this weekend are for Alice In Wonderland.  54% of sales from movietickets.com.  Bounty Hunter and Repo Man have failed to break into the top 5 while surprisingly, Wimpy Kid is responsible for 24% of the sales on Fandango and 15% on movietickets.com

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American Idol Top 12

March 16, 2010

“Overall the top 12 was pretty good as a whole, but I didn’t see essence of The Rolling Stones in most of the performances.  I was expecting more energy and rock n roll.  At least the contestants were able to show their true colors through their arrangements which is commendable. If this competition were a battle of the sexes, the girls definitely ruled tonight with a perfect performance by Siobhan Magnus”

The scores are based on vocal ability, appearance, song choice, personality, stage presence and impact out of a possible 30 points! EPIC (29-30) GREAT (27-28) GOOD (25-26) OK (23-25) FAIL (22 and below)

Here are the guy’s grades in order of performance:

Michael Lynche 28

His confidence is definitely showing and his stage presence is very powerful.  However, I was hoping he would stick to his new formal style and keep to the suits, but besides that it was good but not as good as last week.

Didi Benami 27

She has such a unique voice and she remained consistent from last week.  Somehow she does so much better when her performance his stripped down with a guitar.

Casey James 28

This is definitely the type of music style that suits Casey.  The bluesy-country style! Although vocally he was good, I would have preferred more use of the stage.  Sometimes even if you stand in one spot, you could own the stage.  I just didn’t feel that from him.

Lacey Brown 25

She did okay, but it still baffles me how she made it in over Katelyn and Lilly!!  Besides that, she didn’t do anything different and I did notice that she like to sit on the edge of the stage.  It worked before, but maybe a different approach next time.

Andrew Garcia 26

Andrew is my Danny Gokey of this year.  I was a huge fan!!!  Only difference is while I was drawn away from Danny fan-club midway through the season after I became bored, I am already over Andrew.  After Straight Up, nothing has been the same and I feel that his time will be coming very soon if he continues down this rut.

Katie Stevens 27

She was definitely far improved from previous weeks, however, I was comparing her rendition to Susan Boyle’s and it was somewhat off.  It was good in parts, but overall a big improvement.

Tim Urban 25

His vocals have definitely improved and after last week, he has improved considerably.  However, it was an interesting song choice for me and the arrangement was quite odd!

Siobhan Magnus 30

This girl is amazing.  Her vocal range is outstanding.  The performance was dramatic and that last note was out of this world.  She looked amazing in her Harajuku-esque style and this was definitely her best performance.

Lee Dewyze 27

He definitely stands out in his own way and I agree that he needs to break out more.  With that voice he can rock it out, but he remained safe but sure.  If it works it works, but he can take it a step further.

Paige Miles 27

For someone who had laryngitis this week she did an amazing job especially considering her poor vocals last week.  The performance was okay, but she did mention this was her first real practice this week.  Being the one that counts, she did a good job

Aaron Kelly 28

Aaron was great this week.  His vocals were on point and he really connected to this song which made it more believable and stand out.

Crystal Bowersox 28

There is nobody quite like this girl and even her off-performance is miles better over other performers.  She may have not delivered her best, but considering she is such a strong favorite, there is so much expectations from her that anything negative can be blown out of proportion.

My top 12:

  1. Siobhan Magnus
  2. Aaron Kelly
  3. Casey James
  4. Crystal Bowersox
  5. Michael Lynche
  6. Didi Benami
  7. Lee Dewyze
  8. Katie Stevens
  9. Paige Miles
  10. Andrew Garcia
  11. Lacey Brown
  12. Tim Urban

Final Thoughts: Siobhan Magnus was the unexpected star of the night delivering a standout performance from start to end.  Crystal may have been off her game but was still good.  Lacey and Tim showed why they shouldn’t be in the competition and either should be the first casualty in the top 12.  However, Paige’s laryngitis may also play into the voting.  Her top 12 placement was also unexpected and she may also be up for elimination.

Result: No surprises here.  Tim, Lacey and Paige were in the bottom three.  Tim was the first one who was safe with Lacey and Paige in the bottom 2.  Lacey was eliminated and the judges chose to let her go.  Once again, a wasted spot for someone else.  In the end the judges were right no the mark.

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United World Charts March 20

March 16, 2010

“Debuting in the top spot is Japanese boy band, Arashi.  Rihanna also climbs to the number 2 spot while Ke$ha’s rein at the top ends after 8 non-consecutive weeks.  Taio Cruz is also a big re-entry after Break Your Heart re-enters at number 5 after climbing to number 1 in the US.  All of the other songs in the top 10 fall a few spots while Iyaz and Lady Antebellum fall out of the top 10. ”

Singles Chart:

1.  Arashi – Troublemaker
2.  Rihanna – Rude Boy
3.  Ke$ha – Tik Tok
4.  Lady Gaga – Bad Romance
5.  Taio Cruz feat. Ludacris – Break Your Heart
6.  Jason DeRulo – In My Head
7.  Owl City – Fireflies
8.  Black Eyed Peas – Imma Be
9.  Train – Hey, Soul Sister
10. Young Money feat. Lloyd – Bedrock