It seems like just yesterday that "American Idol" fans were gearing up for the new and improved 10th season. Now — after [article id="1663812"]James Durbin's surprising elimination[/article] last week — there are just three contestants remaining.
Scotty McCreery, Lauren Alaina and Haley Reinhart are vying to be this season's champ. But who will win? Given that the last few "Idol" winners have been male, the odds don't seem to be in the ladies' favor. MTV News caught up with resident judge Randy Jackson to get his thoughts on what Alaina and Reinhart have to do in order to take the wind out of country crooner McCreery's seemingly invincible sails.
"This has to be their best performances of their time on 'Idol,' " Jackson said. "It has to be the best song choices and they have judges' pick this week, so we pick one but, also, they gotta slay it, dude, out of the park," he emphasized with a few of his trademark Randy-isms. "Now it's time to take all the gloves off, yo."
Everything comes down to votes from viewers, however, no matter how well the contestants may "slay" or box their way through their final performances, a point that "Idol" executive producer [article id="1664026"]Nigel Lythgoe emphasized[/article] when we chatted with him. The "AI" exec also talked about dealing with complaints he receives from fans via Twitter.
"It's annoying because 'Idol,' of all shows, really goes with what the public demands, whether we like it or not," he insisted. "And, of course, we didn't like to see Casey [Abrams] going. We didn't like to see Pia [Toscano] going. We didn't like to see James going. But someone has to go, by the very nature of it being a competition."
So who's going to win this? Scotty? Lauren? Haley? Share your vote in the comments!
Don't miss "Idol Party Live" every Thursday at noon on MTV.com for analysis, celebrity guests and even some karaoke — get in the conversation by tweeting with the hashtag #idolparty! In the meantime, get your "Idol" fix on MTV News' "American Idol" page, where you'll find all the latest news, interviews and opinions.