American Idol Top 16: Motown night leaves some guys singing the blues, but let’s be honest – America didn’t completely botch The Top 8


(NOTE: This isn’t going to be a complete recap, seeing how I’m on vacation right now. We were out to dinner and I only caught the last half hour, but I thought I should chime in because I am, as I am most Wednesdays, drunk. Hashtag vacation)

Wow, America really screwed this up …

… Is probably what everyone is expecting me to write.

Here’s a shocker – I don’t hate the choices.

I’m not going to sit here and bullshit you that I’m the biggest Daniel Seavey fan or am totally in love with Rayvon Owen as a contestant. (I think he’s a superior singer, but as a contestant I’m not 100 percent sure where he stands)

I’m not going to sit here and bitch about Savion Wright getting canned or Trevor Douglas somehow not being included.

There’s going to be a lot of people asking why someone got eliminated or another was included, so let’s try and break this down and maybe after you’ll understand why I’m not threatening to boycott the show quite yet.

I think we can all agree Clark Beckham, Quentin Alexander and Mark Andrew deserved to get in. We won’t even talk about them and if they’re not in the Top 12, then there’s going to be problems.

The rest of the group you can make an argument for or against.

THE PROBABLY SHOULD HAVE BEEN INS

1) Qaasim Middletown
VOTE FOR: There isn’t anyone better on stage than Qaasim. He’s the only guy who really gets – or has at least shown – what it takes to be a full-time performer. He connects with his audience and you can’t help but watch him.
VOTE AGAINST: He can’t sing. Sorry – he can’t sing well. His voice isn’t great, or at least doesn’t come across that way sitting on a couch. Maybe it sounds terrific in person, but when I’m listening I don’t hear what I heard from the superior singers that didn’t make it through. I’m willing to bet we won’t get one instance where the judges, fairly or not, will tell him to sing without performing like he did lines of blow for an hour straight leading to 8 p.m.
WHY HE MADE IT: Entertainment value alone. You want to kick out a guy who’s fun to watch?

2) Nick Fradiani
VOTE FOR: Good voice, decent enough with his guitar and, oh yeah, he’s super dreamy. He’s a poor, poor, poor man’s Adam Levine (I shouldn’t be that mean; Levine isn’t nearly as good as everyone makes him out to be, plus he hosts a truly terrible show) and people go fucking crazy for Levine. Chicks love him, moms love him and dudes like him because he’s very bro-tastic.
VOTE AGAINST: He’s Daniel Seavey if Seavey was 14 years older and there’s nothing worse than two contestants that are gonna give you the same performances. He’s not nearly the performer Savion is and he’s not nearly as marketable as Trevor Douglas, who could have played the nerd angle to the final.
WHY HE MADE IT: Because most female voters aren’t blind.

3) Rayvon Owen
VOTE FOR: The show desperately needs a guy who will give you something other than classic rock and Top 20 pop hits. Rayvon can give you plenty of new music, but if he makes the cut he’s going to end up Jon Legending his way through because he sounds like a god damn angel. Plus, Heisenberg hat.
VOTE AGAINST: He’s a tad boring. The big fat black dudes with soul are entertaining because fat guys are entertaining, especially when they get all sentimental and shit. Brian McKnight is brilliant, but would you rather watch him or Bruno Mars?
WHY HE MADE IT: Because most voters aren’t deaf.

THE QUESTIONABLE CALLS

1) Adam Ezegelian
VOTE FOR: Listen, I’m all for Ezegelian. Vocally, he’s terrific. He’s leaning toward crazy rock performances so far, but don’t be fooled – if they slicked his hair down, put a nice suit on him and sat him on a chair, he could give you an acoustic performance that would rival anyone’s.
VOTE AGAINST: He’s a little too cartoony. As a fellow fat guy, I know the problems – it’s really hard to find a look that’s flattering (The tux wasn’t a bad move tonight and properly fitting clothes are going to be a big deal). Add in the hair and the crazy faces, he’s going to get on the judges nerves quickly because they want this to be SERIOUS. He also needs to stop acting like Jack Black to earn respect.
WHY HE MADE IT: Everyone loves the fun fat guy. Everyone.

2) Daniel Seavey
VOTE FOR: He’s adorable and his talent is undeniable. He’s got the young audience around his finger and can do no wrong in their eyes. The judges won’t say anything bad about him because they hate, hate, hate looking like they’re yelling at a 15-year old.
VOTE AGAINST: He’s not ready. Just not ready. His voice isn’t there and as someone tweeted at me while I was enjoying a wood-grilled pizza, “Daniel is first and sounds like he’s going through puberty as we speak.”
WHY HE MADE IT: He’s this season’s teenage coverboy.

Of the remaining four contestants, Savion Wright and Trevor Douglas have the best argument for being included. I’d put Michael Simeon out because his performance last week wasn’t as good as any of the eight ahead of him and at this point Riley Bria is a white Qaasim – he’s a far better musician than he is a singer – minus the stage energy.

Looking at who made it, I don’t think there’s one person I’m 100 percent committed to kicking out to put Trevor in. You could switch him with Fradiani and the show doesn’t lose much, but put him in over anyone else – except for maybe Adam Ezegelian, but he really brings a crowd because he is such a character – and there are problems with the makeup of the show.

Does this mean Savion got screwed?

I’m inclined to vote no, which is tough for me because I’m a huge, huge, huge Savion guy. Been as much since last season when he really got boned.

His auditions this season were terrific and I wouldn’t have minded if he got a spot based on that alone. Last week? I don’t think it was his best and it was just a terrible time to not be as much.

My biggest compliment to Savion – his versatility – may have ultimately been his downfall. America needs to be able to connect with a performer based on their genre of music and I wouldn’t classify Savion as anything except a “musician.”

If you’re putting him in, someone has to come out. The obvious and easy choice is Seavey.
The right choice would have been Qaasim.

While Qaasim’s performance last week was better on stage, Savion is a superior singer by a mile. He doesn’t have the craziness Qaasim does, but since American Idol is still somewhat about the voice, you gotta give Savion the edge.

But you know what? I’m OK with how things played out. This is a competition show and if you aren’t at your best, you should be booted. Bottom line. I had Savion in my bottom four of performances last week, so for me to get all high and mighty about him getting screwed would go against everything I stand for.

Now as for tonight’s performances, I’m not going to judge until I actually see them. It would be unfair to do any rank (because, you know, my voice is SUPER important to the show’s outcome) so I’ll just wait until I get home to watch and figure things out.

I will give a guess based on the numbers though.

If America’s voting in six – and thanks to American Idol having zero competence when it comes to keeping viewers in tune with what’s going on, I have no idea if that’s right or not – I think Rayvon and Seavey get booted off. Rayvon is out because I think he loses a lot of votes to the Brothers Q and Seavey is out because he went off first this week and I think he might have been on the cusp to even getting to the Top 8 anyway.

Tomorrow – no live tweeting. I’ll be on a sunset cruise in beautiful Key West, so if there are any loyal Dudes Review Idol fans that want to keep me in the loop, Tweet at me all night.

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