As the American Idol Season 13 vote results show for “Home” week opened, the dozen singers offered their own tribute to Season 12 title taker, Philip Phillips, singing “Home” with total love. Everyone knows, though, that these evenings end in tearful farewells, even if those departing walk into better careers than they ever imagined. Philip Phillips himself was on hand for rousing sing-along of his new single, along with Irish band, Kodaline, warmly welcomed by Randy Jackson. Despite the festive feeling and down to the last second cheerleading, the save vote did not get used.
The boys came out in leather, and Jennifer Lopez shined in satin burgundy short shorts as the proceedings commenced. Harry Connick, Jr. had to face his own critics for being so hard on the youthful dozen, but he stuck to his guns, saying he was not hired to be a mentor, as he has been before, spending hours encouraging and molding the artists to allow them to shine even brighter in their moment. He was hired to be a judge, he contended, and that means he has “a very short time” to say something that matters , and is meaningful, and of course, very honest. Harry’s beloved Saints quarterback, Drew Brees, did his own urging for the panel man, to ease up, touching Harry’s heart, but likely not heading off his brutal honesty.
Emily Piriz, Sam Woolf, Jessica Meuse, and Ben Briley were first to be called to hear the fateful truth. Randy Jackson even ruled that the panel took a truly harsh tone, remarking that while not every performance was “stellar,” they weren’t that bad, either. Emily took Jennifer’s heart with her “Just Get Loud” homage, so much so that the judge gave an impromptu lesson on how to pull off a “hair whip,” but it was Emily who took the first stool as the bottom three. Sam, Jessica, and Ben retreated to safety on the sofa! Philip Phillips got a hero’s welcome and sang his new song, “Raging Fire,” his spirit spilling over to everyone, including the judges’ panel, Keith and Jennifer singing along. Ryan Seacrest reminded the hopefuls how short a time it has been since Season 12, and now he is on a first-name basis with “Bruce and John Mayer.” The next names called were Jena Irene, Dexter Roberts, Majesty Rose, and Alex Preston. Alex and Majesty looked particularly pained under the dimmed lights, so it was fortunate for them that Ryan sent them both to safety, along with Dexter. Jena joined Emily on a stool.
Randy Jackson introduced Irish band, Kodaline, who performed their song, “All I Want,” to a warm reception from the audience, but only Keith singing from the panel. The final call came for Malaya Watson, MK Nobilette, CJ Harris, and Caleb Johnson. Caleb was first sent to safety, followed by CJ and Malaya, leaving MK in the bottom three once more, and her nerve showing, especially after Harry’s remarks that it seemed she “didn’t want to be here” on Wednesday. Emily, Jena, and MK locked arms to await the final verdict, and it was Emily who had to sing for a save, sending Jena and MK back to the couch.
It’s so hard not to feel sorry for a talented teenager taking the stage, knowing that “home” is where she is headed, but not before an American Idol tour. Emily sang her go-to song, “Stars,” but the shaky sadness came through the notes. It was evident seeing the panel, Jennifer Lopez moving her stool to Harry, then Keith, multiple times, that she was pitching for Emily. Harry announced the news, as J Lo interjected that the vote was “not unanimous”-Emily would not be saved. Her roomies and friends surrounded her as credits rolled. She can get that hair whip down pat for the summer!
Next week, movie madness takes over, as the talents take on “Songs from the Cinema.” The competition airs Wednesday and Thursday on FOX.
American Idol broadcast, March 6, 2014 FOX Networks.