In your face, Simon! Despite a ringing endorsement for from the usually curmudgeony Simon Cowell Tuesday night, America sent Melinda Doolittle back home. She got the fewest of 60 million votes, earning her a return flight to Nashville.
Now it's the Beatboxer versus the Darling Diva. Exactly how it should be. While I think Melinda is more talented than Blake -- it would have been a boring finale to see Jordin and Melinda going voice box to voice box. Both are booming singers with plenty of range. At least now, we'll see a little variety and A.I. voters will have a clear choice.
Not that there's any question about it. Jordin has that spark (pun completely intended) that will ensure her victory over the Bothell, Washington native. Blake has heart, and a spunky soul (and hair too) -- but not the voice. And this is a singing competition after all.
Don't feel bad for Melinda. She's sure to have a great career ahead of her. Evidence Elliott Yamin, last year's third place performer. He came back for a surprise performance Wednesday night and was pretty good. Sporting long hair and fixed teeth, Elliott has an album in stores and a tour set for this summer. With the right support, Melinda is destined for the same success I'm sure.
The other surprise performance of the night -- Maroon 5. Paula was on her feet. But my girlfriend and guest Film.com judge Molly B. says -- Karaoke!
At one point during the evening the cameras caught Simon with a tired look on his face, and someone said he was bored. So were the rest of us, buddy. So were the rest of us. I mean, come on, FOX! Why make us sit through an hour for the results? Didn't this show used to be just a half an hour? Even Ryan's blatant jokes about how he has to "fill" an hour don't make the time pass any more quickly.
It gave me plenty of time to focus on the little things, though. Like Blake's shirt. What was he wearing/thinking? I thought it couldn't get any worse than last week's tuxedo-tee, but it shows what I know.
I actually did enjoy the home visits. Especially Jordin's. It brought tears to my eyes. Seriously. And I don't cry much. In fact the last time I wept was when Quint got eaten by the shark in Jaws.
Let me also be the first to point out that both finalists are from the Seattle auditions! As I've been carping about all season -- Randy, Paula and Simon all bashed Seattle contestants after their auditions. Yet somehow, mysteriously, two Emerald City singers are battling it out for the top spot. (YES, I know Jordin is from Glendale, Arizona, but she tried out in Seattle and a secret source confirms for me that she has family in a Seattle suburb.)
So now it's on to the finals next week. FOX and A.I. will do everything they can to build the drama and make us think it's a "competition." But we all know how it's going to end. Can't wait to buy my Jordin album. What do you think she'll call it? "Sparks Fly?"
Ethan Morris: "Not always right, but never in doubt." Go ahead and write me.