Hasta La Vista, Haley

In a rare victory of substance over style, it appears that American Idol might just be a a battle of bona fide crooners this year after all -- minus Sanjaya, of course.

target="_blank">Haley Scarnato, the last of the sexpots, took the short trip back to San Diego Wednesday night, after she became the fifth finalist to be eliminated. Her rendition of "Turn the Beat Around" Tuesday night earned her harsh criticism from the judges (Randy called it "karaoke" and Simon might as well have called her a whore) and apparently didn't "turn fans around," as she got the fewest of 35 million votes by AI viewers.

This was Haley's fourth time in the bottom three, so perhaps she deserved to go. If that pattern holds true, then Phil Stacey might as well start packing his bags now. Mr. Clean has also found himself in the bottom ranks the last couple of weeks.

With Haley's departure, the fight among the females is now down to Melinda Doolittle, Lakisha Jones and Jordin Sparks -- with Sparks the definite frontrunner, at least in the judges' eyes. All three can defintely sing, but I think AI lost something with Haley's leaving. Maybe she wasn't as good as the remaining girls, but American Idol is about more than just great singing. It's about looks, style and performance too. It's Miss America meets Star Search. Unforutnately the last Miss America and her beauty mark just went home.

On the plus side, Seattle continues to represent, despite all three judges bashing the Emerald City during tryouts. (Simon called Seattle's wannabe Idols "atrocious." Paula called them "delusional." While Randy was slightly more kind with "wild and insane.") Both Sanjaya Malakar and Blake Lewis are still in the running. Stick that in your pipes and smoke it, judges!

As for Haley, I'm sure she'll be alright ... heading home to a loving fiance and to pursue her singing career.

It just bugs me that the best looking girl left in the competition is ... Sanjaya.

Ethan Morris: "Not always right, but never in doubt." Go ahead and write me.