Reviewcap: American Idol - Auditions #1: Boston
by Kona Gallagher, posted Jan 13th 2010 1:05AM
Alright, everyone! It seems like just moments ago that Kris Allen was crowned the new American Idol, but now he and runner-up Adam Lambert are old news. It's time to find the next superstar. This is going to be a big season: It's the first one without Paula, the first one with Ellen, and the last one with Simon. So let's just sit back, relax, and enjoy some auditions!
We start out with a look back at last season, and I'm sure Kara DioGuardi loves the fact that they're opening up with her ripping her dress off onstage with The Bikini Girl. Ryan talks about Paula leaving and shows a clip of Ellen announcing that she'll be the new judge. She looks so cute and excited! I can't wait for her to get on the live episodes. For now, however, we have guest judge Victoria Beckham. Am I the only one who forgets that she talks? I'm just so used to her posing, hearing her voice freaks me out.
Overall, we get some decent talent in Boston, and Victoria Beckham is pretty fun. She's not the ice queen she usually comes across as. She smiles, is encouraging, and even puts Simon in his place. I like her!
Janet McNamara makes me sad right off the bat, because she basically thinks she's getting on the show because the American Idol video game tells her she's getting through to Hollywood. She sings "Pocketful of Sunshine," and it's ... not good. I like how Kara has gotten over the need to impress and is just dancing along. Kara is super-sad because Janet thinks she's Paula, and Janet does further damage by referring to Victoria Beckham as "David Beckham's wife." She also can't stop swearing, which is kind of funny. Needless to say, she does not get a golden ticket.
Maddy Curtis is #9 of 12 kids. She's our first "inspirational" story, which I always hate. They deliberately play on your emotions and have nothing to do with a singing competition. She's singing Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah," and she's really good. See? I like her regardless of her back story. She could do with some vocal training, but she has a lot of natural talent. Everyone loves her and Simon even says that she's "not annoying," which is a pretty high compliment from Cowell. She gets unanimously sent through to Hollywood.
Next up, we have Pat Ford. He's singing "Womanizer" by Britney Spears. It's predictably a train wreck, and he appears to just have gone on the audition to be sassy on national television. Speaking of "sassy," he says that Simon is "even sassier in real life." He hugs Kara, and is pretty cute. I wonder what his actual life in high school is like, because he seems like the world's saddest Glee cast member. In any case, he gets a unanimous "no."
After that lovely diversion, we have a montage of ladies who get through to Hollywood. Jennifer Hirsh, who scats about the Wicked Witch of the West, Claire Fuller and Jess Wolfe don't get much screen time, but a golden ticket is even better, so I'm sure they're fine.
I love how Amadeo Diriccio's backstory is so stereotypically Italian. It even has the ridiculous "Italian" music to accompany it -- it's like a Mama Celeste commercial come to life. He sings "Hoochie Coochie Man" by Muddy Waters. It's kind of overbearing, but it's not bad. Everyone seems to really like the guy. Simon even calls it his favorite audition of the day. He gets four Yeses, which I find surprising, but also kind of fun.
After Amadeo's boisterous personality, we get Derek Hilton. He sings "Sorry Seems To Be the Hardest Word," and he tells the judges that he likes how Chris Brown touches kids around the world? I'm not even going to comment on that. The point is, this dude is terrible, so we're never going to need to talk about him again after this paragraph. It's a big, fat "no" for ol' Derek Hilton. Dear Derek, please do not touch America in a very special way. Thanks in advance. Love, Kona (a frightened American).
Oh Lord. Mere Doyle is one of those girls who just tries sooo hard. Watching her is painful. Whether she's pretending to have an umbrella, modeling her kimono, or murdering Janis Joplin's "Piece of my Heart," she's absolutely exhausting. I feel really badly for her, though. When she says, "singing is my life," and she's so earnest, it does break my heart a little bit. Who knows; maybe she'll go on to do something great. Everyone says no to her.
Next, we have a pair of guys who gets through to Hollywood: Luke Shaffer is a redhead, which I love. I'm just going to put that out there. He's also pretty good, so that helps. Benjamin Bright is fine, but is really saved by his song choice, which is just charming.
Okay, now we have DJ Hipster Glasses. I have no idea why anyone would audition for American Idol and than bitch about the long wait. Then, why would he be a jerk to the judges before he even starts singing? Hey ladies, this guy is single! Can you believe it? Andrew Fenlon is supposedly a local musician. Is he a ... drummer or something? Because dude is not good at singing. After he sings, Kara basically rips him a new one for complaining about the wait, but he doesn't understand why everyone is annoyed with him. He gets three "no's," and Simon says that he would have said "yes," because Andrew is growing on him. Heh. Then Kara starts just losing it and yelling about random stuff. She says things like, "you need a spanking" over and over again. Oh, Kara.
Ashley Rodriguez really wants this, you guys. You hear that? So all the rest of you fools who don't want it as badly as she does should probably just go home. She sings "If I Don't Have You" by Alicia Keys. First of all, there should be a moratorium on Alicia Keys, because everyone does her. With that said, she's actually quite good, and all of the judges love her. She's going to Hollywood.
Haha. Tyler Grady has always liked climbing trees since he was young. Unfortunately for Tyler, trees do not like him climbing them. He fell out of one and shattered both of his wrists. He sings Marvin Gaye's "Let's Get It On," and the girls go bananas over him. The guys like him too, and they all vote "yes."
Oh, man. That was only Day 1. On to Day 2.
Lisa Olivero sounds like she'd be annoying to work with. I don't like people who sing at work. She's singing Mariah Carey's "Vision of Love." Didn't she watch last year? Don't sing this song in front of Kara! She may rip off her dress! Luckily, she's not good, so Kara doesn't feel threatened. Simon calls it "the craziest version of Mariah Carey I've ever heard." It's a no.
Ryan Keane is unemployed. He sings "Ring of Fire," and is not likely to become employed as a singer.
Mike Davis is an actor on a speedboat, at least that's what I think he said. I don't really understand it, but his boat is named "Codzilla," which is awesome. Randy gets super excited and wants to go out on the boat. Mike sings "Yesterday," by The Beatles, and is really good. Plus, he seems like a nice guy, so they can all totally go out on the boat together. It's really weird though, because even though Simon gives him a "yes," Randy gives him a "no," and tells him his voice isn't good. Luckily, the girls like him and he gets voted through. Also, he and Kara may go get steaks!
Katie Stevens gets another "inspirational" back story about her grandmother. She's also a great singer. She's another one of those 16-year-old dark horses. She sings "At Last" by Etta James, and Simon tells her she sang it quite well. She's going to Hollywood.
Joshua Blaylock is 28, which is the age limit for Idol, so this is his last shot. He has a decent voice, but he's super-boring. Simon agrees and calls him "forgettable," even though Victoria says he "has a nice little voice." We also learn something important from this: Randy loves Spandau Ballet. Kara says yes, based on his loveliness, and the rest of the judges fall in line because he's so nice. He's going to Hollywood, and then we will never hear from him again.
Justin Williams got cancer when he was 20. He's cancer free now (and cute). He's also a good singer, and you can tell that Kara and Victoria are getting all squishy as they're watching him. All four judges say yes, and he's heading to Hollywood.
Norberto Guerro has an impressive mane of hair. He's singing "Every Time we Touch," and it's really, really bad. He's super excited to be in the room, so I feel really bad for him. He wants to inspire people, and Simon immediately shuts him down. It's a unanimous "no."
Bosa Mora comes from a very large Nigerian family, and they are all adorable. I'm pulling for him when he goes in, and he's quite good. He sings "You look So Good in Love" by George Strait. Simon says he's "good, but boring." I tend to agree, but I feel like he could be better, once he finds his groove. This audition is great, because Victoria totally gives Simon crap for rolling his eyes. Simon gives him a "no," Kara and Victoria give him a "yes," and Randy gives him the vote he needs to get through to Hollywood.
Leah Lorenti is the last contestant of the premiere episode. Wouldn't it be hilarious if she just sucked and they ended the episode? She was never allowed to listen to secular music, but she rebelled against her religious family. She sings "Blue Skies," and is quite good, even if she does seem to try a bit hard. She needs to reign it in a little bit, but she has talent. All of the judges love her, so she's going through to Hollywood.
At the end of the day, we have 31 people from Boston going to Hollywood. It's a decent group, but very few of them stick out to me. Who did you guys like?
|Maddy Curtis||66 (15.8%)|
|Jennifer Hirsh||7 (1.7%)|
|Claire Fuller||4 (1.0%)|
|Jess Wolfe||2 (0.5%)|
|Amadeo Diriccio||13 (3.1%)|
|Luke Shaffer||14 (3.3%)|
|Benjamin Bright||4 (1.0%)|
|Ashley Rodriguez||42 (10.0%)|
|Tyler Grady||39 (9.3%)|
|Mike Davis||16 (3.8%)|
|Katie Stevens||80 (19.1%)|
|Joshua Blaylock||10 (2.4%)|
|Justin Williams||66 (15.8%)|
|Bosa Mora||15 (3.6%)|
|Leah Lorenti||41 (9.8%)|