Resident "American Idol" expert Jim Cantiello brings you a minute-by-minute recap of every episode right here! Keep checking for updates throughout the show, and don't miss out on his previous live blogs and other "Idol" news.
Tonight I get to live-blog "Idol's" second Hollywood week episode. It's group number day in "Idol" Land, which should be much more interesting than last night's ho-hum offering. Typically, this is an episode that guarantees standout performances, earth-shattering meltdowns and - my favorite - diva behavior to the nth degree.
Get your popcorn ready, folks. It's the one time all "Idol" season when the contestants and the drama surrounding them feels REAL and not manufactured by producers. (Ironic, considering it's the one episode that's most like other reality shows.)
I can't wait to see how Bikini Girl interacts with people who can actually sing. (And if you haven't already, you should read my colleague Gil Kaufman's article about the Bikini Girl Survival Controversy.)
On with the live-blog!
7:59 pm - Come on, "Idol." Don't fail me tonight. Give me something worth blogging, dangit.
8:00 pm - If the episode is a quarter as good as this teaser, we're in for an awesome night. But why is this only an hour? Doesn't it feel like they're teasing at least 2 hours worth of excitement?
8:02 pm - MEGAN CORKREY!! She just forced herself into a group. You can sing with me, girl!
8:02 pm - Meanwhile, Tatiana Del Toro (the crazy giggler) is back, and her group is already regretting picking her. I don't blame them.
8:04 pm - Rose Flack is also regretting her choice. She picked Bikini Girl to sing with. "My group is more concerned with being cute..." Your cute, too, Rose, in your own hippy dippy way!
8:05 pm - Tatiana's group has already caused her to meltdown. "They're going to throw me under the bus!" And now she's joining another group! Nancy Wilson (nice red weave!) is NOT havin' it. OMG I LOVE HER.
8:06 pm - Okay, this episode is a mess. Why is there so much Ryan Seacrest voice-overs? It's like they took two hours and decided last minute to cram it into one. Ugggh! What is happening to my favorite show, guys??
8:09 pm - Yikes, they're making the blind guy do CHOREOGRAPHY?! Cruel cruel cruel.
8:10 pm - Tatiana is back with her original group a few hours later, and Nancy Wilson is not having that, either. Fox, give Nancy her own show ASAP. Sass on wheels!
8:11 pm - My head hurts. Team Tatiana is ganging up on her because she's cuckoo. I feel bad for the guests staying at this hotel.
8:12 pm - Back at Team Compromise (Tatiana's second team...that girl gets around!) Nancy is chewing out blondie for wanting to rest her voice. "I don't care that you're crying!" Cold!
8:13 pm - And now Katrina "Bikini Girl" is going to bed, leaving the rest of Team Diva high and dry. Girl needs her beauty rest. She's no dummy. She knows the only reason she's on this show is because the (male) judges think she's a looker. If she has bags under her eyes tomorrow, they're DEFINITELY going to kick her to the curb.
8:14 pm - Katrina is back in her hotel room "to go to sleep" except she conveniently left the door open so the cameras could shine their lights inside and capture her crying in bed. Groan.
8:15 pm - And now Nathaniel Marshall is crying. (He's on Team Compromise, too.) "I tried my hardest to put my heart in this and get these girls to get along. I don't know what to do!" Maybe you should wear red sunglasses and an orange necktie. Oh wait, you're already doing that.
8:15 pm - Nathaniel and Nancy are going at it, waving their arms, flapping their lips. Their theatrics bring every single cameraman to the scene. This is like some TMZ ish right here. Nice job, Nathaniel. You know how to get camera time! You have obviously been to "reality tv school." I hear Paris Hilton's New BFF is casting a second season...
8:20 pm - Rose is walking around the hotel in a sleeveless orange sherbert turtleneck, wrapped in a carpet. And barefoot! Eek. She and her teammates are trying to find Katrina.
8:22 pm - Oh no, Katrina's sick! Karma's a b*tch, and according to Kara DioGuardi, so is Katrina.
8:23 pm - You know you're an aspiring singer when...you use water bottles as microphones.
8:24 pm - Tatiana's team is getting along this morning. Well, Tatiana claims they're getting along. But her teammates still look like they want to wring her neck.
8:25 pm - And Bikini Girl is BACK! She ain't quitting. She got herself out of bed and is now carrying her makeup case to the audition room. This is like a horror movie! AHHHH!
8:26 pm - The suspense is killing me!!
8:29 pm - Crazy, the "Idol" logo just flashed but music from the show "24" is playing. Doesn't this feel a tad over-dramatic? Forget Nathaniel, the biggest "Idol" drama queen are the producers. This is ridiculous!
8:30 pm - Simon Cowell: "If you forget the words, you're out." And if the contestants needed any clarification, there was an echo.
8:30 pm - First group is "White Chocolate." India Morrison, Matt Giraud, Kris Allen and Justin Williams are rapping! And beatboxing! And singing! I love them! I wasn't so into Justin Williams, but they all made it through.
8:32 pm - Austin Sisneros is singing about "doo doo." But don't fault him, judges, the kid's only 11 years old! He thinks the words to every song are "doo doo." I liked his "ha cha cha cha" that he put at the end.
8:33 pm - Nick "Norman Gentle" just made it through to the next round. Holy crap!
8:33 pm - Alex Wagner-Trugman, Anne Marie Boskovich, Emily Wynne-Hughes and Ryan Pinkston make up "Action Squad." They should call themselves "The Hyphenates." (Except for Ryan Pinkston. He should be his own group, called the "Awesome Dude." That guy can sing!)
8:34 pm - Oh no. Ryan Pinkston got booted. That guy sounded great. So did Emily Wynne-Hughes. But she totally forgot the words, so I get that. I don't get why Ryan got axed.
8:35 pm - Ah, apparently he saw evil in Paula Abdul's eyes. Seriously. Okay, so he's a wackadoo. That's why he had to pack his bags.
8:38 pm - Whew. This episode is exhausting. But I still feel like I could've watched another hour's worth. This pace is maddening!
8:40 pm - They just intercut Norman Gentle into a "Simon is Mean" montage. However we already saw him go through to the next round.
8:41 pm - Danny "Dead Wife" Gokey, Jamar "His Friend" Rogers, Taylor "Twirl" Vaifanua and some other nameless girl just performed a cappella brilliantly. They all made it through. Now we'll get to learn your name, nameless girl.
8:42 pm - Wait - that group's name was "The Rainbow Coalition?" Say what?
8:42 pm - Jeremy Michael Sarver, Adam Lambert, Matt Breitzke and Jesse Langseth might be my favorite group yet. I hope they don't reveal that they're group name is lame. Moreso, I hope Adam Lambert never wears those boots in public ever again.
8:44 pm - Team Diva is up! Lauren Barnes and Bikini Girl start off okay enough. I'm not sure if Rose Flack forgot the words or not, but I am sure that she is a hot mess regardless. And Jasmine Murray looks 40 even though she's 16. Can I call her The Curious Case of Bonnie Buttons?
8:45 pm - Simon is asking the group if they got along. (Nice one, producers.) When Katrina is called out for going to bed early she says - and I quote - "I was in heels since five in the morning and then I was up til three, and then I have scoliosis and I was sitting on the floor and my back was hurting and I was so tired." Let's count all the excuses together, shall we?
8:46 pm - Bonnie Buttons survives. Rose, Lauren and Bikini Girl say goodbye. Bikini Girl is gone, and she snubs the rest of the group. Kara called her a "b" again!
8:47 pm - See you in Maxim, Bikini Girl!
8:51 pm - It's 4:20pm at the Kodak Theater. I wonder if Jason Castro's brother is excited.
8:51 pm - Wait, did Anoop just get cut? And the Osmond? And the 11 year old Austin? Why aren't we seeing more of this?
8:52 pm - Tatiana's team is up. Muna Hiluf has a nice voice. Tatiana does not. But that doesn't stop her from ad-libbing an "I-ee-I wanna get through-oo-oo." As annoying as it was, it worked. They all survived.
8:54 pm - Tatiana is thanking Jesus and the guy holding the sound stick. Sorry Mickey Rourke. Tatiana just stole your award for "Best Acceptance Speech Ever."
8:55 pm - And now the Lord is being evoked by Team Compromise. He's a busy guy!
8:56 pm - Nathaniel Marshall is doing his best Norman Gentle impression. Nancy Wilson is doing her best Whitney Houston impression (from "Being Bobby Brown") and Paula is doing her best Escaped Mental Patient Impression. (Seriously, the woman cannot stop dancing, even though this performance is a disaster.)
8:57 pm - It's obvious this group hates each other. Nancy Wilson was cut. The other two survived. Don't cry, Nancy! You could always go marry Cameron Crowe. Oh wait, another Nancy Wilson beat you to it.
8:58 pm - I hope Megan Corkrey isn't in this "cut" montage.
8:59 pm - She survives! Although why didn't we get to hear her sing?! And still no Blind Guy! And no Von Smith?
9:00 pm - Um...Anoop just appeared in the teaser for next week. So he didn't get cut? I'm so confused.
Okay okay okay. I don't even know where to begin. Some dopey monkeys have hijacked my favorite show and turned it into an incoherent mess. Seriously. This is the number one show on TV. Shouldn't they be able to afford decent producers? I hate to give the show some tough love, but there's no excuse for the way this show's been edited thus far. There were 100+ contestants in Hollywood Week, so why are they showing us the same 20 every episode? Anoop was definitely in a "it was the end of the road" montage, yet there he is at the end coming back next week. It's just lazy, "Idol!" Get your act together! This is tearing me apart!
Am I overreacting? Did you guys enjoy tonight's Group Number episode? Am I being too critical of the show? Or do you agree that this season feels "off" so far? Hit me up in the comments. I always shout out my favorite comment of each night in the following night's live-blog. And I've been saving my fave from last night for the end.
MTV.COM user "Guy," who has excellent taste, wrote "I have been looking for that one, Megan Corkley, but no sign of her in today's show. She's the one for me... I would put real bucks on her. She will win this year's idol..."
I'll see you next week, where we can only hope we'll see some dynamo performances...and competent TV.