Posted: 6:20 pm Thursday, February 6th, 2014

‘American Idol’ recap: Hollywood rounds, part II 

By Rodney Ho

AMERICAN IDOL XIII: Contestants compete in the all-new "Hollywood or Home" episode of AMERICAN IDOL XIII airing Wednesday, Feb. 5 (8:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. CR: Michael Becker / FOX. Copyright 2014 FOX BROADCASTING.

AMERICAN IDOL XIII: Contestants compete in the all-new “Hollywood or Home” episode of AMERICAN IDOL XIII airing Wednesday, Feb. 5 (8:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. CR: Michael Becker / FOX. Copyright 2014 FOX BROADCASTING.

I enjoy the group rounds, no matter how silly they are. I guess they are supposed to show if a singer can work well with others and that is not a bad thing to know.

There are always a few groups that click and others that just embarrass themselves with bad dance moves and missed lyrics. This season, we see very few of the really bad ones.

They cut the group of 104 survivors down to 77. (They had planned to cut it in half but didn’t quite do it.)

The show opens with flashback group  moments featuring Carrie Underwood, Scotty McCreery, Candice Glover and Phillip Phillips. And a Brittenum twin from season five (and from Atlanta!) uttering, “I don’t do groups!”

I’m not going to recount every single group tonight. It’s just too many names. I’ll just pluck out some highlights and lowlights.

Three Mo Days: Tony Foster Jr, David Oliver Willis, Sarina Joi Crowe. (Alex Clare “Too Close”) All three have been through this group round before, which helped all three. But surprisingly, Tony gets axed while the other two move forward. “You spent 80% of your performance staring at your feet,” HCJ said. “Look at us! Sing the song!” Good for you, HCJ for giving him an explanation.

Backstreet Cowboys: Ben Briley, Casey Thrasher, & Dexter Roberts. (“I Want It That Way”) This plaid country trio is a mixed bag. Ben is my favorite. At least it’s entertaining. All three get through. (We need some country male love this season.)

Glad to see Neco Starr of Atlanta move forth after doing some Bruno Mars. We then see several who are going to end up in the final 31. Spencer Lloyd seems to rely on his charm more than his singing chops and rudely decides not to rehearse with the ladies in his group because he already knows the song. We lose a few folks like quirky Keith London and sound healer Adam Roth, who I can’t believe made it through that “Hollywood or Home” round.

Tiquilla Wilson quits. Huh? “Idol” decides not to dwell on it. Then HCJ makes fun of her by pretending to quit.

Then there’s this mess featuring Matthew Hamel, CJ Harris, Caleb Johnson, Tyler Ahlgren, with Caleb standing out. CJ still gets through but the others don’t.

Clarity: Munfarid, (HCJ cradler) Jena Asciutto, Sikenya Thompson, Allie Odom. There’s a little drama with Sikenya sick and almost dropping out. She struggles but with her Fantasia-like voice, she (barely) gets through. Allie Odom from Cumming doesn’t make the cut. (Did we even see her before?)

Savion Wright makes it through but is upset to see his buddy John Fox leave.

Jessica Meuse from Slapout, Ala., who we on this blog really liked in the audition rounds, finally finds a group and admits she is struggling with “Single Ladies.” (Nica Nashae from Milledgeville was part of this crew, too.) Both Nica and Jessica make it through! Jessica held up well when the one eliminated singer in the group’s mom harangues her. She officially has gotten more air time than any other contestant by far. “Drama follows me,” she laments.

This “Say My Name” crew get criticized for song choice and includes Atlanta’s Emmanuel Zidor (he is IDed as from Miami, his native city, not his current residence.) Emmanuel, despite a generally bad performance overall, gets the clearance due to potential.

The final group – Christina Collins, Olivia Diamond, Queen Bulls, Malaya Watson - try Jackson Five “I Want You Back” and there is some decent, some good. Surprisingly, all get through.

136 comments
Woodpappy
Woodpappy

I'm gonna be really miffed if we lose power on Wednesday evening and I miss out on IDOL.

Sam-A1
Sam-A1

Don't know if we're still here or moved to the XF thread, so I'll post this both places.

Mercedes: I loved "Monuments Men", and as far as being "more classy", I thougt Hugh B (Lord G) and Jean DuJardin added a lot of CLASS! All the guys were really good - I liked Bob Balaban's little nerd character and Cate B was very good - it was a very enjoyable and informative film. Of course I cried. Several times! And I did not realize the actual extent of the items stolen - unbelievable! The barrels were stunning - though I knew about that being done, it still sickened me to see them..

I haven't seen "DA" or "WD" - watched the fabulous "50 Years Ago - The Day That Changed The World" with sneak peeks to the ice skating.

And I must say our Ice Dancers, Meryl and Charlie, were totally magnificent - for their long program, got the highest scores ever recorded for an ice dancing performance. Very proud of them. I can't wait to see their regular competition performances -one was choreagraphed by Derek Huff - I expect it to be fantastic!

RodneyHo
RodneyHo moderator

I have posted a new item about why I thought X Factor failed.

MoSchreibman
MoSchreibman

This is proof for sure that there is a god or gods or maybe more even and I mean about the X Factor television program and not that Ralph Lauren person.

MercedesS
MercedesS

Happy news about the X Factor!

MercedesS
MercedesS

Just finished watching the parade of ugly Olympics outfits.  Ralph Lauren's wasn't the worst, but he came close.

RodneyHo
RodneyHo moderator

The "X Factor" is officially no more in the U.S. Simon will go back to the U.K. and focus on that edition. I didn't even bother to watch season three but the main problem with the show is it lacked distinction, overshadowed ultimately by "Idol." It tried to be louder, more grating, more Simon. It didn't bring enough fresh ideas to make it worth watching.

JTesla
JTesla

I bet Idol 2014 will beat X-Factor 2014's viewer numbers.

JTesla
JTesla

And "The X Factor" is no more (for the US).

Sam-A1
Sam-A1

Mercedes: AND Jean DuJardin - that fabulous guy who won 'Best Actor" Oscar for "The Artist" - he was so great in that film!

MercedesS
MercedesS

Attempt III: George Clooney directed, co-wrote and stars in "The MonumentsMen" with Matt Damon, Bill Muray, John Goodman, Jea Dujardin, Bob Balaban and Hugh Bonneville (Lord Grantham!) as his fellow art saviors.  Cate Blanchett plays important part of Rose Valland, a French museum employee turned Resistance spy who kept records of what the Nazis stole.  That woman deserves her own movie. 

MercedesS
MercedesS

Attempt II: I totally enjoyed this based on  true story tale about the 400 men and women who would be placed in the Monuments, Fine Arts and Archives section of the Allied Armies and old to fin the art Hitler had stolen (over 6 million pieces) and return it to rightful owners/museums. 

MercedesS
MercedesS

Attempt: I'm surprised at the lukewarm reviews for "The Monuments Men". Critics wanted "something classier", "more artsy", "less comedic", not "The Dirty Dozen Meets Kelly's Heroes".  Well, if you want to get a sizable audience for a brainiac-themed movie, maybe a couple of low-level laughs are ok. 

Sam-A1
Sam-A1

Mercedes: Please post the movie comments, since I plan to see it this weekend. This place has been a little bit weird the past couple day - ghosts, I guess.

MercedesS
MercedesS

Tried to post some comments about "The Monuments Men" and a nasty red box popped up saying "It seems you're attempting to post malformed content."

JTesla
JTesla

I ended up not watching. It was recorded so I'll watch it sometime this weekend while we are snowed in. I ended up watching the Olympics. Ttwo sports that I don't really care about captivated me more than another night in Hollywood, but then I just love the Winter Olympics.

Sam-A1
Sam-A1

D: is the baby's hair red?  They look adorable, just so small it's hard to see much.

Woodpappy
Woodpappy

I really enjoyed the groups singing last night.  It lets me know there is some really good talent coming out of this.  I am starting to pick out a few that just might get to the top 10 or 12.  Was amazed how rude that mother was last night when her daughter didn't make it.  Poor child, living with Atila the Hun..!

Sam-A1
Sam-A1

Nope - trying again!

Sam-A1
Sam-A1

Just changed mine (I think) - to reflect both of my little girls. testing to see if it worked

Rickster_
Rickster_

Finally got around to watching the "Hollywood or Home" show I had DVRd. I thought it was horrible when they told the groups to got out and get on a bus without telling them where they were going. If you're going to dash someone's hopes... at least tell them to their face. DOn't be gutless.

The Lovely & Gracious Mrs. Rickster & I turned the channel and watched some DVRd Pawn Stars unitl it was time to go to bed. We didn't even watch last night's show.

Sam-A1
Sam-A1

Deirdre: New pic, I see. Wish it was bigger - I can barely make out any details! And DanJohn, I wish I could see your pups more clearly.

Sam-A1
Sam-A1

But, RoHo, Constantine was really talented - not so sure about "Mr Cool".

I was very impressed with Savion - he was genuinely heartbroken when his newly-made friend was eliminated. Made me cry a bit! Makes me hope he does well - a really good guy, it seems.

I was glad pink-haired girl made it, and was also impressed at the kindness of her group-mates. I feel really sorry for the young one that was eliminated - she showed total grace, but her mom was another story altogether - she showed her @$$ from the very beginning. Wouldn't even let her daughter say what she wanted before leaving - very rude, crude and selfish.

Does anyone know if the darling young girl with the guitar and funny name that we discussed yesterday made it thru - I don't remember seeing her in a group. The one who presented herself so well, dress-wise and the lovely smokey voice. I'd like to see her in the final group, if she keeps being as good as we've seen so far.-

DeirdreC
DeirdreC

@RodneyHo  

To me, Simon misjudged American audiences.  He thought that hiring a tall, gorgeous guy to host the show would be enough but the audience also required some ability.  Robohost was a disaster.

He also thought audiences would love seeing him lounging in an unbuttoned shirt, drinking an adult beverage with his minions nearby while teen girls sang love songs to him would enjoy the fun.  Audiences found it icky at best and bordering on harem-like sheik-dom at worst.

He thought L.A. Reid would be a great judge.  Instead, he turned out to be a vindictive, win-at-all-costs guy who saw nothing wrong with putting down singers just to further his cause.

He thought audiences would actually fall for the cheap and obvious trick of pretending to eliminate Melanie Amaro then realizing his mistake.

And worst of all, he thought he could get the magic back with Paula and instead, ended up embarrassing her by knocking her singers out of the competition far too early.

Like I said, the first season was such a huge disaster that saving the show was nearly impossible.  Especially when he hired Khloe Kardasian...proving that Simon thrives on notoriety instead of ability.


DanJohn
DanJohn

@RodneyHo I agree that XFactor lacked distinction but I will throw out another "D" it lacked direction. I think mass turn-over also hurt because I think viewers like to settle into a show and then  it becomes familiar. That can last for years before change is needed. Simon was quick to make wholesale changes at the drop of a hat. Since I watch/watched XF USA, UK and Australia the American version was by far the worst. Maybe Simon can guest host for Piers Morgan now!!

DeirdreC
DeirdreC

@JTesla  

Not a big surprise.  It was a disaster its first season and it never found its footing after that.

DanJohn
DanJohn

@JTesla I just read that Fox cancelled it. I can't say I didn't see it coming due to the poor ratings and the musical chairs with the judges. However I admit I thought it would do well when it first started. Que Sera, Sera Simon!

JTesla
JTesla

@MercedesS "not "The Dirty Dozen Meets Kelly's Heroes". 

That sounds like the perfect movie combination right there! Thanks. I may impress the wife by taking her to a movie for once that doesn't involve dragons or superheros.

DeirdreC
DeirdreC

@JTesla  

I've heard that the opening ceremony is really good.  Looking forward to that tonight...if Bob Costas will just shut up fro 5 minutes!

DeirdreC
DeirdreC

@Sam-A1  

She has a bit of red in her hair.  Her mother is hoping she's a redhead.  Her father(who IS a redhead) is hoping she isn't.

DanJohn
DanJohn

@Sam-A1 Sam, the 3 dogs in the photo are Bosco, Mitzi and CoCo. I've had them for almost 3 years now and they're 6 years old. They belonged to a dear friend (Dotty) who passed during heart surgery. I promised her I'd take care of them if anything happened to her. All 3 are Havanese. In total I have 6 dogs. I agree the avatar doesn't show them very well.

DeirdreC
DeirdreC

@Sam-A1  

Sam, it doesn't change right away.  I changed mine yesterday afternoon and didn't see it until this morning.

DeirdreC
DeirdreC

@Rickster_  

The group sing is an acquired taste, Rickster.  However, the best part about last night is the large number of very good singers.

DeirdreC
DeirdreC

@Sam-A1  

It's the first picture I've seen where my grandson has gotten close enough to his sister to squeeze them in.

DanJohn
DanJohn

@DeirdreC @RodneyHo I think Simon's arrogance and insecurities caused the series to fail. There's no doubt he wanted to stick it to Idol and become the grand poo-bah of singing competition shows. And as Deirdre points out he went for a nice looking guy ala Ryan Seacrest but who had the personality of a grapefruit. As the series started to flounder he sampled other shows instead of focusing on a plan. With the success of The Voice he went out and got Brittney Spears thinking she was his X-Tina. Then he thought Khloe Kardasian would bring in viewers based solely on her name, never mind she had no experience. Then bringing in Paulina this year was trying to match The Voice and Shakira.


Every step he took was an attempt to keep up with others. If he had a business plan it fell by the wayside in trying to copy/sample other shows. The show lost an identity it never had.  It's sad actually because I thought the show had promise.

JTesla
JTesla

@DeirdreC Yep. Less Bob more sports. The only thing interesting he offered last night was when he talked about his eyeball.

DanJohn
DanJohn

@Sam-A1 I just changed the photo to one of Buddy one of the other 3. It may take time for it to appear.

Rickster_
Rickster_

@DeirdreC  Like I said, I didn't even watch Idol past the bus rides. That turned me off so much that I turned it off.

JTesla
JTesla

@DeirdreC Some type of infection, so he will look funnier than normal for the next few days. I'm sure he'll address it again tonight.

DeirdreC
DeirdreC

@JTesla  

What happened to his eye?  Did somebody finally hit him?