Wednesday, July 23, 2014
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Upset Winner on 'Idol'? (video)

Could Lauren Alaina have turned the tide in her favor last night? Torn vocal chord and all?

Upset Winner on 'Idol'? (video)

Could Lauren Alaina have turned the tide in her favor last night? Torn vocal chord and all?

While I was musing during a commercial that Scotty McCreery’s bland-on-bland showing may have snatched defeat from the jaws of victory, my son expressed skepticism: “How many swing votes do you really think there are on American Idol?”

He’s probably right. This is a show where viewers settle on their favorites early and maintain their allegiances come hell or high notes. For proof just look at

Reinhart’s baffling ouster last week.

More coverage
Photos: A look back at Season 10 of 'Idol'
Who will win the 10th season of Idol?
Scotty McCreery
Lauren Alaina

But if Idol voters could be swayed, Tuesday night may have done the trick. What a strange evening.

First there was that hugger-mugger with Lauren’s torn vocal chord. They even brought out the Idol doctor to assure us that Lauren had been given “all kinds of drugs” and should be fine. How could you not love a show that thinks nothing of heavily medicating a 16-year-old?

And what was Ryan Seacrest doing in a tux and bowtie? Was he trying to imitate Michael Buffer? The well-known boxing announcer (”Let’s get ready to rumble”) actually turned up on Dancing with the Stars minutes later.

And why did Seasick thank the audience at the Nokia Theatre for that opening ovation? You do know they weren’t cheering for you, don’t you Ry?

Scotty started strong with a rowdy cover of “Gone”. Lauren responded gamely with “Flat on the Floor”. Did her voice get raspy a few times in there?

Oddly there were no judges’ comments afterwards. I think it’s safe to assume they would have called both performances “amazing”. They always do.

But in the next two rounds, Scotty was badly let down, first by George Strait’s selection and then by Jimmy Iovine’s choice, “I Love You This Big”.

The 17-year-old has grown considerably as a performer, but those two songs made him seem one-dimensional.

Lauren went three for three, ending with the sappy “Like My Mother Does” (see video below). Patriotic and sentimental are the two flavors that always work on Idol.

Afterwards, Lauren got a standing Randy, the highest accolade a contestant can receive. Jennifer Lopez said, “You may have just won with that song." And Steven Tyler opined, “Lauren gets it, hands down.”

What do you think? Does Scotty have this thing in the bag? Or did Lauren win over the audience on the final night of competition?

Closing aside: Did you notice Glee’s Principal Figgins (Iqbal Theba) in the crowd? Good seats too for a high school administrator from Ohio.

 

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David Hiltbrand Inquirer TV Critic
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About this blog

A true child of TV, David Hiltbrand has worked as a critic at People and as a columnist and editor at TV Guide.

David Hiltbrand Inquirer TV Critic
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