Tuesday, May 20

AI7 - Final Performance Show (5/20/08)

We're here at last! The David-David finale many have predicted for so long. I hope they both perform well...

The show opens (and continues intermittently) with a boxing/prizefighting theme - from opening announcer ("in this corner...") giving their weights, to having 'coaches' (Clive Davis and Andrew Lloyd Weber, though they both coached both contestants), to having 3 "rounds" of songs. Ok, cute for something different. Ryan has the guys say a few words to each other and we're off! (DA: "This guy is awesome!" DC: "Now anything I say will sound trite... he's one of the most consistently nice people... at this point I consider the competition to be over, we're just having fun.")

Round 1: Clive's choice

Cook "I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For" - wow! Wow for the 1st U2 song to be cleared for Idol. Wow for the awesome, amazingly enjoyable performance. (And, um, wow for how the last note kept going after David lowered the mic?!) Seriously, I'd be happy if the show ended right now. Judges loved it as well.

Archuleta "Don't Let the Sun Go Down On Me" - Well, I was dreading this. While I'm no longer a rabid Clay fan by any means, this will always be (at least in the Idol realm) Clay's Song. David starts out sitting on the stage (stairs). Wait, this is good. Really, really good! Where has this performer been for the past 8 weeks?! Great vocals, awesome job. *This* is what a Finals should sound like (both of the songs this round)!

Round 2: Songwriters' Competition songs

- I like this: the guys were given the list of the Top 10 songs and got to choose which one they wanted to do! Which makes so much more sense than sticking the Rocker with the proverbial Puppies & Rainbows coronation song ("Do I Make You Proud" has to be partially responsible for Taylor's lack of success, n'est-ce pas?). So let's see what they came up with...

Cook "Dream Big"
- Cool! Nice, catchy pop/rock song, very radio-friendly. Great choice. Think he flubbed the words 2nd time through the chorus but didn't let it show. Randy & Paula liked. Simon, however, was not thinking about the "first single" aspect of the song, but solely the "sappy coronation moment" aspect, and thus declared it a poor choice.

Archuleta "In This Moment" - Well, it starts out with the title & just goes from there. Predictable, definite coronation-style song, but he performed it very well. Again with the semifinals-strong vocals and great stage presence/confidence - nice to see! Judges loved it. Simon said he really liked the self-centered lyrics and said this song was a much better choice "in keeping with tonight." (Um, yeah, Simon, call you really see Cook singing this song, or this type of song in general?! Think about it.)

Round 3: Contestants' Choice

Cook "The World I Know" - Woo-hoo, we do get to hear him do this!! He's playing acoustic guitar on this one & it's a nice, mellow version for the most part, changed up just enough to "make it his own." Showed his vocal range very well. He was very emotional at the end (awww!). Randy liked, saying he can see David doing this style of music on his album. Paula gave a standing ovation. Simon said that it was another poor choice, that he should have done "Billie Jean" or "Hello" again. David replied that he felt that this had been a progression for him and therefore he didn't want to go back & repeat anything.

Archuleta "Imagine" - In the intro David explains that he felt this was his strongest performance and that he really connects w/this song. I thought it might not be a good thing to end on a repeat, but he really pulled off another great performance and I think in his case this was a good choice (less risk than with a less-familiar song). Randy loved it, saying this is what this show is about, "finding the best singer," and that David A. is the best singer of Season 7. Paula loved it of course. Simon said that he considered tonight "one of *the* great finals" and declared this a "knockout."

After tonight's performance, I'm totally fine with Little David winning (as I think he will). The past several weeks he hasn't been performing up to standard, but tonight he showed once again that he is indeed a very good singer, and I don't think any less deserves to win (or has ever won in the past, like them or not). I'd be thrilled for David Cook if he does, but I don't think he needs the win to be successful.

The show closes with Ruben performing "Celebrate Me Home" live, to a montage of clips from the season, from initial auditions through the finals. Can't wait til tomorrow's extravaganza!


In other news...

Thoughts & prayers to Luke Menard & family in the wake of his recent cancer diagnosis.

And CONGRATS to Kristi Yamaguchi, the new (and very deserving) champ of Dancing with the Stars!!!

1 comment:

Todd said...

I didn't get to see the finals live, since I don't get FOX, but just watched them now on youtube. WOW! This has to be the best AI finals ever! Both David's really gave 3 awesome performances. Either could win tonight, and both will be successful in their respective genres.

While I would say that Cook was leading going in to tonight - having given many better performances over the past few weeks, Archuleta really stepped up his game this week. He came out with his best performances of the entire season! And with that was able to go head-to-head with Cook. If I had to bet, I would say that Archuleta will win.

You know, you really should invite me to come over to watch AI since I can't get it at home. :)