Anoop Desai

"American Idol" meets the Rat Pack

This is a pivotal week for "American Idol" fans. After all:

-- Today is Allison Iraheta's 17th birthday. For those of you waiting patiently, she's now a year from being a consenting adult.

-- Tuesday is "Rat Pack" night, with the remaining contestants singing songs done by Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin or Sammy Davis. They could also do the music of Joey Bishop or Peter Lawford, but I wouldn't advise it.

Disco dies; so do Lil and Anoop

All over America tonight, children were looking accusingly at their parents and asking: "You listened to THAT?!? Why?"

The medley on "American Idol" seemed determined to assure that disco, already dead, would stay that way.

I'm not talking about the opening bit, with the seven finalists dancing to Paula Abdul's choreography. That was goofy fun.

It's Adam and ...

Let's imagine that forces conspired against Adam Lambert. They decided he had to return to his home planet, the one where people can sing like that, people can create like that.

If so, this would be the closest "American Idol" ever. As it is, it's still sort of close: For the first time, I have no idea who will be ousted Wednesday. I also have no idea who will be the runner-up to Adam in the show's finale.

Here are a few of my comments; please add yours:

"Idol" pulls a surprise rescue

OK, that's a twist I didn't see coming.

After Tuesday's "American Idol" (see previous blog), I predicted that Matt Giraud would have the fewest viewer votes, with Lil Rounds second-fewest and Anoop Desai third.

That much turned out to be true. What I never would have guessed was that judges would use their rescue -- the only one they get all season -- to save Giraud.

They did, which sort of makes sense. He's a good singer who just never quite got anything special out of his song this week, "Have You Ever Really Loved a Woman?"

"Idol": Grand drama ... almost

Simon Cowell has a great sense of music, but not of drama. Tonight, "American Idol" barely missed an epic moment.

The viewers had put Scott MacIntyre at the bottom, with Anoop Desai next and Lil Rounds -- a great singer who had an average week -- third from the bottom.

The viewers got it right, but there was still a chance for the judges to save him. For a while, this seemed like it had been scripted for one of those feel-good menus.

The end of Joy

In the end, Megan Joy offered a parody of Megan Joy.

She danced her silly dance. She sang badly. She weaved and bobbed and lost her place in the lyrics. Then she headed back to Utah. She seemed glad she was going there; I shared the feeling.

Here are a few of my comments; please add yours:

1) Yes, Megan Joy is immensely beautiful. Still, facial and vocal beauty don't automatically match. That fact is known by anyone who heard Pierce Brosnan sing in "Mamma Mia."

Sorry Jasmine, it's not enough

How much has "American Idol" advanced in the past five years?

Consider this: Jasmine Murray and Diana DeGarmo were essentially the same person on "Idol." Each was a cute teen-ager with a big voice, belting out high-volume finishes.

Back in 2004, that was enough to take DeGarmo all the way to the top two. This time, Murray didn't reach the top 11.

There were plenty of reasons Murray and Jorge Nunez were eliminated tonight, but one is the steep improvement in the competition.

A weird night of "Idol"

This was a strange night of "American Idol," throwing away all the usual patterns.

Usually, the show is all about balance -- boy-girl, loud-soft, good-bad. Not this time. It started and ended with women -- fresh, fierce work by Lil Rounds and Alexis Grace; that left the middle with eight men and only three women. It started with seven songs the judges loved -- then three they didn't -- then three more good ones.

It was all odd, but interesting. Here are a few of my comments and then my should-go, will-go. Please add yours:

"Idol": No surprises; no problem

Sometimes, it's good when "American Idol" doesn't have a surprise.

Chris Daughtry, Tamyra Gray and LaToya London each finishing only fourth? Jasmine Trias and Nikki McKibbin finishing third? Michael Johns and Carly Smithson being bounced early? Those were surprises, and nasty ones.