James Durbin wasn't the only one who was shocked and awed by his surprise dismissal from "American Idol" on Thursday night. The sensitive California rocker shed tears and gave an emotion-choked send-off performance after host Ryan Seacrest broke the bad news, but his fans gave him an even bigger tearstained goodbye, sending hundreds of messages of support to MTV News in the wake of his booting.
After being tipped to possibly face off against country favorite Scotty McCreery in the finale two weeks from now, Durbin was instead sent to the showers, prompting many of his fans to inundate MTV News with their howls of disbelief.
"Done with 'American Idol' ..now that James is gone no need to watch," wrote an upset Pamela. "Can't wait for his CD!!"
Diane couldn't have agreed more, aiming some of her ire at survivor Haley Reinhart while writing, "I am so done with 'Idol.' The voting system needs a major overhaul. It is too bad that 'Idol' has stooped so low as to support a girl with such a disrespectful attitude that should have been bounced instead of Pia. I will follow James and his great career and will now support Scotty, he will get my votes."
In fact, it seemed like the ladies in particular were worked up about the situation, with Maria giving an "amen" and adding, "Seriously, James is already an Idol! He is one hell of a performer! The 3 left have a long way to go before they could even measure up to James! I think that is why the show got rid of him!"
Many of the commenters said they were done watching the show for the season (though, to be fair, there are only two weeks left), but Robert perhaps voiced the many gripes best when he wrote, "America proved they would rather vote for karaoke singers who try to sing the songs close to the original rather than those who show talent and creativity."
Others encouraged James to keep his head up and think about all the other top finishers who've gone on to successful careers, such as Adam Lambert, Chris Daughtry and Jennifer Hudson. The finger-pointing was varied, with many blaming the voting system — which this year allowed online voting, and which "Idol" executive producer Ken Warwick said may get an overhaul in the off-season — as well as new judges Steven Tyler and Jennifer Lopez. Some even took aim at America itself for being too conservative and not opening space in its heart for a metal singer.
And, as usual, there were some conspiracy theorists who claimed that the voting system was "hacked" and that votes for James were mysteriously going to Reinhart, who took the brunt of the negative feeling from disappointed Durbinites.
It wasn't all love and puppies, though. One commenter wasn't surprised at all that Durbin didn't make the final three. "I don't understand how anyone can say this is a shocker," Bberzin wrote. "James has been over-pimped all season. Not one of his pitchy performances has been criticized. The judges praised his mediocrity all season, and this is the result. No one should be shocked. The other result of the judges refusing to give honest, constructive criticism, is that James actually thinks he was the best thing that ever happened to Idol. He BELIEVES what the judges have been telling him all these weeks! What has he done that's never been done before? Maybe special effects, but as far as talent is concerned? NOTHING! James is certainly entertaining, but he has a long way to go, and a lot to learn before he could live up to all that hype. If he's willing, and wants to work for it, I'm sure he will succeed. In my opinion, however, he should have been voted off before this."
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