When it was announced that "American Idol" Season 12's first live results show, on which the top 10 finalists would be revealed, would be a full 90 minutes long, I assumed that meant there'd be some wiggle-room for a few Wild Card performances. I mean, how else was Nigel Lythgoe going to pad an entire hour and a half?
Oh, but I should not have doubted Fox's ability to find new ways to make a process that could have been completed in five minutes feel like five hours. No, people, there were no Wild Cards on this Thursday's semifinals results show. There was, in fact, just a top 10. And every single one of the top 10, upon hearing their good news, did a victory song. Every. Single. One. Of. Them.
And then each contestant was critiqued by the judges, just to kill more time--except the singers weren't really critiqued, since having Nicki Minaj say, "That wasn't it, ladybug," or Randy Jackson exclaim, "Dawg, that was a mess!" probably would've sucked the wind right out of the contestants' sails and made their victory performances seem, well, much less victorious.
So basically, this episode featured so much filler, it might as well have been sponsored by Juvederm.
Perhaps I should not complain. I mean, we all, at least hypothetically, watch "Idol" to see people sing, right? But after two back-to-back, 120-minute "Idol" episodes filled with singing this week, another hour and a half really was overkill. The contestants should have just saved these performances for next week.
And then, of course, there was the issue that not all of the best contestants, in my opinion, made it through this Thursday. Disgruntledly I endured one disappointing performance after another, while I waited to find out if my favorites were safe--but unfortunately, a few male contestants that I was really rooting for (Elijah Liu, Nick Boddington, poor little Charlie Askew, even Vincent Powell) were sidelined by the bland Paul Jolley, the sweet but not-quite-ready-for-prime-time Lazaro Arbos, and Charlie's former Hollywood Week nemesis, showboater Curtis Finch Jr. The amazing Burnell Taylor was the only boy I was truly excited to see in the top 10, and he's the only one I'd like to see at this May's "Idol" finale.
This is why there should have been Wild Cards this season, Nigel. And shame on you, Randy, for stringing viewers (and contestants) along by hinting that there would be Wild Cards. Boo.
Thankfully, the girls' bunch was much stronger. But due to the show's stupid gender quotas (and aforementioned stupid lack of Wild Cards), there wasn’t room for all of the great female singers this year, which meant marketable potential pop stars like Breanna Steer and Aubrey Cleland--both of whom would've been better additions to the top 10 than a couple of the boys who did make the cut--were sent home.
But we will see two of these singers again: At the end of the episode--when the end finally, mercifully arrived--Ryan Seacrest announced that next week there will be a singoff between the male contestant and female contestant who narrowly missed making the top 10, and the winner of that singoff will get to go as a bonus 11th contestant on this summer's Idols Live concert tour. But will any concertgoers even want to see that tour? I'm not so sure. While this season's cast has some real talent--a top three comprising Candice, Burnell, and Kree would be awesome--I still think this may be "Idol's" worst, or at least most boring, top 10 ever. (Season 9, all is forgiven…)
What do you think of this season's top 10? I've ranked the contestants below, in my order of favorite to least favorite, along with the "victory songs" they performed this Thursday. Discuss:
1. Burnell Taylor
2. Kree Harrison
3. Candice Glover
4. Angie Miller
5. Amber Holcomb
6. Janelle Arthur
7. Devin Velez
8. Lazaro Arbos
9. Curtis Finch Jr.
10. Paul Jolley
This article originally appeared on Rolling Stone: Wild Card-less Season 12 ‘American Idol’ Top Ten Revealed