‘Idol’ In Iraq: Awkward Song Choices Hurt Syesha, Cook Ready to Grab the Crown

Editor’s Note: It’s crazy serious and difficult for the U.S. Armed Forces in Iraq, but our soldiers still find time for a little fun and escape: just like many of you, they love their weekly dose of “American Idol.” We made friends on the Internet with some members of the Army’s 82nd Airborne division (Fort Bragg, what up!), who will be sending us their review of each “Idol” installment.

They get “Idol” a day later than we do, and their reports might not arrive until well after the show has aired (because, of course, things like communications blackouts do happen when you’re in the military taking care of URGENT BUSINESS). But you don’t mind because they are helping give you the freedom to watch “Idol” in the first place.

Our soldiers each week (L-R): PFC Joshua Miranda, 22 (Orlando, FL); PFC Nathan Puckett, 19 (Cynthiana, KY); SPC Cory Combs, 21 (Plymouth, MA); and SSG Steve Cody, 27 (Los Angeles, CA)

Only two of our soldiers caught this week’s “Idol” performances (Joshua and Steve), and even halfway across the globe, they could see Syesha Mercado’s elimination coming a mile away. For their money, our boys in camo are betting that the “Idol” crown will be placed on the noggin of David Cook on next week’s finale. Here are their impressions of this week’s renditions, after the jump.


David Archuleta, “And So It Goes” by Billy Joel

Cody: I think he did really good –- there was feeling.
Miranda: Really good.

Syesha Mercado, “If I Ain’t Got You” by Alicia Keys

Cody: One of her best performances ever.
Miranda: That was awesome. She is awesome.

David Cook, “The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face” by Roberta Flack

Cody: I think he did a really good job.
Miranda: I liked it. He did good, and I like that song, too.


David Archuleta, “With You” by Chris Brown

Cody: I think his song choice was brave and wise. His fan base is young, so he needs to connect with them by singing a more modern song.
Miranda: He did OK, but I didn’t think that song was good for him.

Syesha Mercado, “Fever” by Peggy Lee

Cody: I thought it was fun, but probably not good enough to make it through elimination.
Miranda: It was OK. She was hot.

David Cook, “Dare You to Move” by Switchfoot

Cody: He did OK, but I honestly expected a little more out of him.
Miranda: I think he did great.


David Archuleta, “Longer” by Dan Fogelberg

Cody: I think he sang it well. The song itself is terrible. It was like a clichéd Hallmark card, with the word “love” for every fifth word.
Miranda: I didn’t like the song, but he did good.

Syesha Mercado, “Hit Me Up” by Gia Farrell

Cody: I liked her performance a lot. She had a lot of energy, too.
Miranda: I liked it, but I don’t think she is right for that type of music.

David Cook, “I Don’t Want to Miss a Thing” by Aerosmith

Cody: Best of the night. He really made it his own.
Miranda: I think David Cook should be our next “American Idol.”