Even though American Idol attempts to make vote results night a fun and festive time of remembrance, there’s no getting around the fact that it means farewell to someone whose dreams were as big as the sky, whether that sky was in North Carolina, New Hampshire, Michigan, or a tiny map-dot town in Alabama. Hometown visits happen next week for the top three finalists, and every Idol singer dreams of that hometown welcome, but someone won’t be traveling that far in the private jet. Jennifer Lopez looked luscious in red, and Harry Connick, Jr. even got treated to a favorite sweet treat from his beloved New Orleans, fresh beignets, maybe even flown in from Louisiana! Harry tried flying a few on his own to some in the audience, and they seemed to love the finger-licking good goodies drenched in powdered sugar. The judges’ panel became showered in sugar, along with Harry’s nose, but he did persuade Jennifer to take a bite!
Randy Jackson weighed in on the stunning performances this week. He gushed that Jena Irene had given the “greatest performance in Idol history” with her rendition of Elvis’ “I Can’t Help Falling in Love.” He praised Caleb from start to finish, too, remarking how he was “coming into its own.” He particularly moved the judges with his final “Maybe I’m Amazed.” He commented that Jessica “nailed it” with her last performance of Lady Gaga’s “You and I.” He said that if Alex stayed in the competition, he owed it to his performance of Coldplay’s “Yellow,” the last of his three songs. It was a night of saving the best for last.
The foursome enjoyed pizza in the Park, and it was Jessica that spoke her love for her fellow competitors, and the fact that she wanted to be the hero girl of Slapout, too. The time came for revelation, and a commercial break was a painful tease prior to the first named to the Top 3. Jena Irene was first to be chosen for that hometown visit, and the taste of her cherished “Coney dogs.” Caleb came second, and no doubt, all of North Carolina will hear his rocking entrance, wailing into town! As Jessica and Alex stood together waiting for the last person to be named, it was Alex who seemed most nervous, but he was soon relieved to hear his name as the last of the three, leaving Jessica stunned and shaking, and a bit tearful. She pulled herself together quickly, though, taking on her own song, “Blue Eyed Lie,” singing strong, and keeping the growl of her voice through the verses! She was going to leave on her terms, with her own impression lasting on the American Idol oval. The tears didn’t come hard until the end, until after she had owned her moment. All three of the judges gave her ovations. This one moment may be crushing, but the guitar girl knows she will be a successful musician, and not a broke one, from now on.
American Idol broadcast, May 8, 2014 FOX Networks.