Idols Find That Motown Sound
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This week Motown Records, recording home to musical legends like Marvin Gaye, The Temptations, and Jackson Five, invited the top ten AMERICAN IDOL contestants to visit “Hittsville USA.” This week also marked the return of those annoying collaborative Ford commercials. Groan.

THE PAULA REPORT: Wednesday’s program began with the usual pre-show buildup. I was excited to hear this week’s performances, but I was DYING to see Paula’s personal style even more. I have to admit, I was disappointed to see her (dare I say) normal makeup and attire, even more pulled together than last week. But then it happened. Paula stood up.

When Paula Abdul sashayed out from behind the judges table, she revealed the hidden secret: her elegant looking strapless dress was really a giant ballet tutu. Apparently, Paula hired back the fashion division from he former stylist team.

Nobody but the famous SATC character Carrie Bradshaw can pull off poofy tulle. Nobody! Paula’s look only became more unusual when Simon adorned her face with a black-ink moustache. I confess it was a relief to see the return of “Odd Paula.” I had missed her.

THE HITS: Hat fanatic Matt made us all want to “Get It On” with his bluesy sound; sweet crooner Kris proved “How Sweet It Is;” and Anoop gave every girl in the audience goose-bumps with his note-perfect version of “Baby Baby.”

THE MISSES: Country boy Michael sounded like an aging Las Vegas lounge singer (according to Paula); Megan Joy missed nearly every note she aimed for; and Lil Rounds, the girl I thought would have nailed the Motown sound, gave us a karaoke version of “Heat Wave.”

THE PERFORMANCE YOU WILL REMEMBER LONG AFTER THIS SEASON: It’s no surprise that LA’s own Adam Lambert made this list two weeks in a row. The only real surprise is how far ahead of the other competitors he really is. Adam shocked us all with his slicked back tidy-boy hairdo and retro suit. He sat center-stage on a stool and falsetto-ed his way into a standing ovation from the entire audience.

GOODBYE TIME: Michael, Matt, and Scott were pulled over to sit in the “bottom three pen,” but piano-guy Scott was quickly sent back to the red velvet sofa, leaving Michael and Matt to sweat it out alone. When asked what the judges had planned in the “save the singer” department for the one voted off that night, Simon quipped, “The bottom two are there because the public doesn’t like them very much. So after he sings, we’ll decide.” Cringy. I hate it.

After the final voting announcement, Texan Michael Sarver was left to convince the judges he deserved another chance. Michael sang. Judges huddled. Audience members cheered their support. But in the end, Michael was sent packing. Will Simon and the crew ever override the public’s vote? Would they have done something different if Adam or Kris had been voted off? Is this whole idea just a sham to keep us guessing? We’ll find out soon enough—the top nine hit the stage next Tuesday!

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