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Hi all!  Thanks for visiting this site, but I have decided to move my American Idol recaps this season to my All About American Idol blog on blogspot.  If you get a chance to go look and you are interested in reading about the recaps of the episodes throughout this seaon, stop by and say hello :).  I hope we get some great talent this year!


Day 39. The final day on the best Survivor ever! Amanda and Parvati are the last two standing, both equally deserving of the million dollar prize. Walking out to the mailbox, they screamed as they see food and orange juice waiting for them. Both girls have played extremely good games in BOTH seasons that they’ve been on. I think Amanda deserves mad props though for doing two in a row. THe background music is hilarious, though. It’s all sappy strings with a poignant piano line while the girls are talking about this being “the biggest accomplishment of my life.”

It’s nice to see two girls hugging and being happy together at the end as they burn their shelter. In one final “stir the pot” witch on the beach moment, the girls grab their things and head out to fight for the million at the final tribal. Will Amanda speak better than she did in China? For her sake, I certainly hope so.

8 people on the jury. Eliza, Ozzy, Jason, James, Alexis, Erik, Natalie, and Cirie. The final 2 will get to make an opening statement, then each jury member will address the finalists. THen they will vote.

Amanda: I wanted to play a strategic game. I know I wouldn’t be sitting here wihtout help from all of you, so I wanted to say thanks.

Parvati: I came into this with a reputation as a flirt. I knew I had to beat my competition and make bold power plays. Ask me what you want and you will get an honest answer.

Jury Questions:

  1. Eliza – I have no idea who I’m voting for. I respect Parvati’s move to take out Ozzy, but I can’t respect how you talked about me behind my back. That leads me to believe you are just a mean person. But Amanda, listening to you literally made me want to kill myself because you are too superficial.
  2. Jason – Amanda, if you had been let in on the decision to vote Ozzy out, would you have told him. “Yes” Parvati, what were you redeeming qualities? “Protectiveness and Loyalty to the ladies I gave my word to”
  3. Alexis – Parvati, I am passionate about working with young girls. What makes you a better role model. “I am more independent and outspoken. I am more willing to put myself out there and make bold moves, which Amanda didn’t do.” Amanda, I have seen oscar award winning performances from you, like you crying over Cirie. What part of your game has been genuine? “My tears have been genuine. I didn’t come here for sympathy votes.”
  4. Natalie – Ladies, you have my respect tonight. Parv, you have labeled yourself as a flirt, most masterful flirt in survivor. How does being a flirt parallel to your intimate life? “Being flirtatious is a big part of my personality. It gets me what I want. I flirt with girls and guys to get my way. I can develop relationships without it, but it’s an old standby.” Amanda, you are a smart and beautiful woman, but you have a glazed over look on your face a lot. Was that your plan to be the pageant queen cliche? “Neither, I am a strong woman of substance, but I have made strategic plays and came in here to compete on the highest lvl.”
  5. Erik – 5 to 6 days ago, I would have been voting for Amanda in this game. As of late, I’m looking at you with a lot of questions. I felt burned at the last two tribals when you were there. What basis did you have to judge me? “Everything I said was honest. You were unloyal to me, and I wasn’t going to keep my mouth shut.” Too little too late, I”m done with I”m sorry from you. (wow, maybe Amanda can’t win this!)
  6. James – I’m not even going to be difficult. Amanda pretty much knows she’s got this in the bag. I just want to say Parvati, why couldn’t you be honest. “Got you, sucka! There was no chance of me sitting here if I stuck with you and Ozzy and I needed more control.” (He looks really hurt by her.)
  7. Cirie – Hi ladies. Amanda, tell us why Parvati deserves to win a million dollars more than I did. “Parvati played a bolder game and she was a powerhouse.” (What? Oh god, Amanda, why?? You should have said that you think CIrie deserved it but you had a better chance at beating Parv?)
  8. Ozzy – I may be the biggest idiot up here. I was truly hurt by what you did to me, Parvati. You put a price on our friendship and threw us away like garbage. It really does hurt. How can you say that you’re a role model when you are willing to discard us like that? I don’t want any words from you. THe hardest part is that you took away 14 days that I could have spent with Amanda (Que strings). He’s crying, omg. Amanda, you asked me if I was playing you, I’m honestly not. I have feelings I’ve never felt before and I have started to fall in love with you. You are an amazing girl and I want everyone to know that. I am glad I didn’t win Cook Islands so that I could be here to meet you.

Jeff: I’m going to give you a moment to think about your vote. Wow. I think more people thought Amanda was fake than I realized. I think she is going to win, though, but I”m almost always wrong about things like this.

“Tonight you are voting for a winner. The name you write down is the name of the person you find most deserving of the title of sole survivor and the million dollar check that goes with it.”

They showed us four of the eight votes. Ozzy and Erik voted for Amanda. Natalie and Alexis voted for Parvati. Alexis’s vote is interesting because she said she wanted a role model for young girls. How does she see a role model in Parvati’s admission that she gets what she wants by manipulating others? Weird.

And Jeff Probst is off! Aww, no crazy cut scenes with him travelling with the votes. Oh well, here they are in NYC for the live decision!! Here are the votes: Parvati. Amanda. Parvati. Amanda. Parvati. Amanda. 3 votes each. Parvati. Parvati. Winner of Survivor: Fans vs. Favorites. I am in shock. I think Amanda deserved it more than Parvati, but really they both played an amazing game. I want to know who the third person was that voted for Amanda. James I would guess, but you can never be sure. I wonder what they would have done if it had been a tie??

In some ways, I think it is only fitting that Parvati wins. She really was behind a lot of those backstabs and blindsides. Congratulations to Parvati on winning what is the very best season of Survivor! I will be so sad come Thursday night when there is no Survivor episode. Let’s hope the next season can get even better. All I can say is that I really hope they bring Amanda back one more time, but she would probably be the first one voted out as a threat. I loved Amanda and I think she played a great game. Good season all and good night!

With only a handful of days left, the tribe was falling apart.  It seems like this season has been a season of injuries and quitters.  James had to go see medical after the last tribal council and they informed him that the infection is close to the bone.  If his finger doesn’t get better, he will have to go have surgery.  Back at camp, Alexis took a major fall and hurt her knee.  Only time will tell if this means two more people going home before their time or not. 

At reward challenge, Probst made a very happy announcement.  The winner of the challenge will get a day on Jellyfish island with their loved one, who promptly came out for each person and gave them a big hug.  Parvati’s Mom, Natalie’s Mom, James’s Dad, Amanda’s sister, Erik’s Brother, Cirie’s Husband, and Alexis’s brother.  The challenge was for everyone to fill out questionaires and then when Jeff quizzed them, they had to guess whose name was written down the most.  Each player had a little clay doll of themselves up on a post.  Three ropes were holding back a hammer and if you make the correct guess, you get to break a rope.  When all three ropes are gone, the hammer swings up violently to break the doll.  Aww. 

The cutest part of the family’s arrival was Erik.  As his brother came out, he hugged him and gleefully shouted, “Look man, it’s Jeff Probst.  He’s just standing right there!”  I think Jeff almost blushed.  Probably the best part of the entire challenge once it got under way was when Alexis knocked James out of the challenge by breaking his last rope, his father mumbled, “When we get home, we’re going to have a talk about her.”  Omg, I love his dad!!  I almost wish James had won just so we could see more time of him and his father hanging out!

In the end, I think Cirie had the most correct answers, and it was also her decision whether to knock out Alexis or Amanda.  She chose Alexis, curiously enough.  Of course, Alexis got to choose two people to go with her, and she chose Natalie and Cirie.  Can I just say that I love to watch Cirie and her husband are so cute together.  THey seem to really love each other.  Her other choice was who to send to exile island, and she sent Amanda, where she will get to look for the other hidden immunity idol. 

In the worst, most disappointing turn in the game, James was sent to have his finger looked at again.  The doctor, who I am honestly quite mad at right now, said that the infection was too deep and he had to leave the game.  What???  Over a finger cut??  I almost cried.  I was literally shouting “Nooooooooooooooo” at the TV screen.  I am not a doctor, but he only has what?  Four days left?  Come on!!  He got to say goodbye to his tribemates, but James was gone.  All the tears on Parvati’s face couldn’t save him.  Boohooo.  I hope he will still be able to be on the jury.

At the reward challenge, they got to swim in a lake filled with non-stinging jellyfish, which was awesome.  I was really proud of Cirie for swimming in there and facing her fears.  She said that the experience changed her a little bit, realizing that everything is not a threat.  We didn’t really get to see much of the family time, though, which is a bit disappointing.  Back at Exile Island, Amanda found all of the clues very easily, but in a twist, they buried the idol under the flag back at camp instead of on the island itself.  Amanda can be sneaky, but can she hide this from them all?  I wonder.

When everyone (except Amanda) returned to camp, they were all shocked that James was gone.  No one shed tears like Parvati, however.  Probably because one less person means one step closer to a million dollars.  In an interesting conversation around the fire, Parvati asked a hurt Alexis if she wanted to be voted out.  With fear in her eyes, Alexis hastily answered “That is not even an option.”  This could perhaps paint a huge target on Parvati’s back for trying to manipulate the game.  Nothing new there though.

The Immunity challenge this week is about a bunch of hanging colored sake bottles that the competitors needed to hit in order to win.  THis time, instead of knocking out other people, the goal is to hit your own.  First person to break all of their bottles wins.  Natalie and Erik and Parvati were quick to break a bottle, but Erik pulled ahead when he hit his second one.  Natalie connected again, but Erik easily broke his third bottle to win immunity.  I honestly don’t think Cirie got within a mile of her bottles, but she’ll probably be okay tonight anyway.  Erik saved his own life, as the last man standing he is fighting for his life.  If Survivor History repeats itself, he will probably survive to go on and win the whole damn thing.

Back at camp, Amanda emptied her entire bag to “prove” that she had not found the idol.  She pulled Parvati aside and said that she needs her help in figuring out who was going home at tribal.  She confessed to Parv that she knew where the idol was, which is smart to get Parvati on her side.  They discussed voting out either Natalie who seems to be a physical threat, or Alexis, who is the more social threat.  Neither of them trust Erik to vote with them, so Amanda went to work on Erik right away.  She tried to sweet talk him, but he confessed to her that he is going to vote her off at tribal. 

Continuing her campaign, Amanda talked to Cirie who said that it’s either a tie or she votes Amanda out and keeps numbers on her side.  At least everyone is being honest at this point.  Well, except Amanda.  Parvati distracted the rest of the crew while Amanda dug for the idol, but they did not show us whether she found it.  And at tribal, we get to see Eliza’s tonsils again as she realizes that James is not there.  Oh, but they brought James back to sit on the Jury!!!  He has an IV and is doing okay. 

Amanda confesses that she couldn’t find the idol at tribal, which makes her a great actress.  She looks completely resigned to going home.  She did, however, call Erik out, saying that he seems trustworthy when he needs you, but if you need him, he finds greener grasses.  Everyone basically says that Amanda is the only logical target because she is unbeatable when it comes to jury votes.  After the votes are cast, Jeff asks the infamous question “If anyone has the hidden immunity idol, blah blah blah.”  For a moment, I thought she didn’t have it, but then her finger went into the air and she sauntered over to Jeff twirling it in her hands.  “When I told you I didn’t have it, I didn’t lie.  I didn’t have it then.”  Finally we got to see the idol played!!  Hooray!  Good job Amanda!  All of the votes for Amanda do not count, so Alexis was sent home with a disgusted look on her face.  With a sexy over the shoulder look toward Ozzie, Amanda looked completely triumphant. 

Probst said it all when he said “You guys are perfecting the art of the blindside.”  This has to be one of the best and strangest seasons of survivor ever!  Who do you think is in the best position now for the win?  I think they better get rid of Erik fast or risk losing to him in the end.  I am actually kind of glad that Alexis went home and Amanda stayed.  There’s nothing better than a good twist when it comes to Survivor and this season has delivered surprise after surprise.  I can’t wait till next week.

We are down to the Top 5 contestants and that means two songs each all packed into one hour. Without Carly to look forward to, I’m not sure who I’m most rooting for this week. It seems as though an all David finale is inevitable, so I am not sure whether to pick my favorite David and ride him all the way to the end or to hope for an underdog victory. Maybe tonight someone will step forward and really wow me.

Tonight’s mentor is Neil Diamond, which will prove very different from last week’s Andrew Lloyd Webber Broadway week. The judges, Ryan tells us, are not going to say anything about the contestants until they are done with both of their songs, which makes me very happy. Most of what they say is just the same crap every week anyway at this point.

Jason Castro  – 

  1. “Forever in Blue Jeans” – I love to watch Jason play his guitar in that easy sexy style of his.  He did a good job, but I think at this point he’s getting too boring to be in the American Idol finale.  It was a good song and he sang it well, but that’s all I have to say about it really.
  2. “September Morn’ ”  _  A ballad on the second choice, sitting on a stool without a guitar, just holding the microphone was a good choice for him.  I think, though, that for the first time all season he was a little bit off pitch.  He was really missing some of his magical connection, which I chalk up to song choice.  He said that he had something in his throat right before he started singing, but there’s just no good excuse at this stage in the competition.  The judges felt the same way, and said that he was just not himself this week.

David Cook  – 

  1. “I’m Alive” – FIrst off, let me just ask one question.  What is up with the AC/DC jacket on Neil DIamond night?  I didn’t get it honestly.  Maybe he’s trying to do some DC for David Cook thing, but it just doesn’t really go with the theme of the evening if you ask me.  And I did not like the V neck red shirt under it either.  But as for his performance, it was really good.  He isn’t doing anything revolutionary with his rock star turn around at this point, but at least he’s consistent with his style and his vocals. 
  2. “All I really Need is You” –   His second choice of song was what I had been looking for all night far.  Someone finally showing that they care if they win or lose this competition.  He went with an electric guitar on the first song tonight and then switched to acoustic for the second.  His performance felt so much more intimate and passionate, and the way he sang with all of his heart from the bridge on gave me chills.  The judges loved his performance with Paula even saying that she thinks she is already looking at the American Idol.  Simon thought his first song was okay, but the second one was brilliant.  It was current and was a fresh arrangement. 

Brooke White  –

  1. “I’m A Believer” – Why Brooke why?  This was just NOT the song for her.  She looks so tense and uncomfortable on the stage, which is unusual when she’s playing her guitar.  Maybe she is just freaked out that she messed up so badly last week and she knows that messing up again would be suicide… I don’t know.  She doesn’t look great with that weird ruffled shirt and she just doesn’t sound good on this song. 
  2. “I Am ” – On the piano for her second song, she did a much better job.  She had some lyrics written on her hand, though, which is just terrible.  She just is cracking under the pressure and she is probably the one who deserves to go home most this week.  Her voice is all crackly and I don’t get why Randy and the other judges are always so quick  to praise her for her FLAWS.  Surely we aren’t looking for someone with so many flaws??  If I want flaws I can go out to any bar here in Raleigh and find something equally poorly done.  Simon said he hated the first song but that she was better on the second.  Overall I am not impressed with her these last few weeks and I think it is her week to go home.

David Archuleta  –

  1. “Sweet Caroline” – Wow, Neil DIamond called David a prodigy, imagine that.  He hit the nail on the head though when he said that David needs to listen to his advice and learn a few more things.  That’s what separates the two Davids at this point, honestly.  Their independence and ability to exist on their own.  Little D did an okay job on this song, but I think he had a hard time finding the pitch at the beginning.
  2. “America” – Let all the over 50 crowd get to their feet, David A is in the house!  He’s so easy-listening and predictable.  Even the embellishments he puts on the music is old fashioned and so overdone.  Out of all of the contestants he has the sweetest sounding voice and probably the most pure vocal talent, but he might as well be 50 years old for all the lack of freshness he chose.  The judges liked him as always and Simon thought it was a brilliant song choice (referencing KLC’s Lee Greenwood week here maybe?).  I mean, who wouldn’t vote for the wonder boy singing a song about America?? I won’t, for one.  I personally think he’s a bit too old fashioned, but you don’t hear them getting onto him about it.  No, they called Syesha’s first song old fashioned, which is just bullshit, honestly.  Ugh.  I think they have already picked this kid out to win on the production staff, so heaven forbid anyone criticize him.

Syesha Mercado  –

  1. “Hello” – This is one of my all time favorite ND songs, and I have to give Syesha a virtual high five for nailing it tonight on this one.  She looks so soft and beautiful with her hair long and in loose curls.  Her decision to start out sitting on the edge of the stairs on the stage with her bare feet made the beginning so sweet and personal.  Of the first round of performances, I think this was my favorite.
  2. “Thank the Lord for the Nighttime”  –  She might not always be on pitch and lord knows I’ve torn her apart for it in the past, but let me just say that she’s the only performer tonight who took control of the stage and really performed for the audience.  She was smiling and having a good time, she looked great, and she really was in it to win it.  Once again, however, Randy had to make a comment about she belongs on Broadway.  Then, Paula basically said the same thing.  It’s almost as if they are trying to push her off the stage and onto the streets of New York.  Simon thinks she is a good actress/singer but that she is going to be in trouble because there are only five left and she is the next to go.  DId he not hear Brooke’s performance??   /sigh.

Tonight I was really missing Carly and her amazing onstage energy.  After all is said and done with tonight’s performance, I think it is extremely clear who the producers want to see in the final two and they will probably get their way.  Tonight, however, the only two that were even good enough to mention in detail were David Cook and Syesha Mercado.  Yes, I am actually saying that Syesha did a great job, and she basically was told by the judges that she belongs on Broadway and not on the pop stage.  Maybe they are right and I think she will have a brilliant career on the stage somewhere, but I think they gave too many compliments to Brooke and little David, and not nearly enough to Syesha.  THe judges have almost become more of a voter manipulation tool than anything else at this point.  What do you think?  Who will be in trouble tomorrow night?  Do you think anyone can nudge the two David’s out of the finale at this point?

Oh, and before I go, I have to mention that in between songs one and two, what was up with Paula Abdul?  Did she get hit with the stupid stick on her way into the studio tonight or what?  She has never sounded more clueless, and that’s truly saying a lot.  She was discussing Jason’s second song and he hadn’t even sang it yet!!  Simon basically interrupted her and wouldn’t let her continue on, which was honestly doing her a favor before she said anything else that was completely humiliating.  What did you think of Paula’s stupid comments tonight? 

Day 28 of Survivor Micronesia and the talk at camp is all about Ozzy’s ousting at the last tribal council. Amanda, of course, is pissed off at Parvati and Cirie for betraying them, but she seems to realize that the others are just playing the game, so she better get into it. I mean, let’s face it, she’s been riding Ozzy’s coat-tails the entire game so far, so his getting voted out might be the perfect opportunity for her to step up her own game. Since she didn’t betray Ozzy, she’s sure to get his vote over anyone else if she can make it to the top. Just a thought. Whereas Parvati and Cirie just pissed off a great many people that will now probably never vote for them if they make it to the final 2.

Cirie noticed a nasty cut on James’ finger that he’s been nursing and putting coconut oil on for a while. I’m not sure if that will matter later, but since they put it in, so will I. Speaking of James, Parvati knows that she needs to make peace with James about her vote. In an interesting conversation with her, James compares her to Eve when he says “You just have to go after the apple.” He says that she was selfish in her choice and when he asked her what her final 3 plan was, she admitted that she was planning to take girls to the finals with her. I think she really made an enemy in James at this point.

Parv also headed over to Amanda to say she was sorry, but that she wants it to be a final 5 of all women. Amanda decides to play it safe and combine forces with the girls and not act too upset about the vote, which is super smart. She is wary, however, of whether they are telling her the truth.

Reward challenge this week ends up being the infamous Survivor auction! Jeff Probst tells them all that there will be no sharing of money or items this year. Each person was given $500 and has to bid in increments of $20. Cirie won a meal of hot dogs, french fries and all the fixin’s for $120. The second item was sold to Erik for $80 and he was given the choice to keep it or trade it for another unknown item. His original one was octopus, but he traded it for a huge tray of nachos. Nice. Next Natalie bought a covered tray of fruit bat soup for $240 which she stupidly would not even touch, so James got for free. A peanut butter jelly sandwich with milk went to Amanda for $280, damn.

Natalie’s next covered item that she bought for $240 turned out to be a good one. She got to choose one person to go to Exile Island and then she could keep the money they had left. One important announcement from Jeff is that a new immunity idol was placed on the island since Ozzy never played his. Natalie chose to send Jason, which he was upset about even though he should have been stoked. I mean, who cares about an extra meal or something when you could possibly have immunity, which is basically another shot at the million?? Natalie took his $500 and he had to go immediately.

The next bid of a covered item was sold to Natalie again for $380. Wow, it was a HUGE chocolate cake. In a twist, though, Jeff handed her a note saying she could share the cake with three other trabe mates and they have 60 seconds to eat it. SHe chose Parvati, Cirie, and Alexis, calling out her new alliance interestingly enough, which should clue in Amanda that she is not a part of it. In a disgusting turn, Erik paid Cirie $40 to lick her chocolatey fingers. And with that, Jeff banged his gavel announcing the auction is over. You would think that after past seasons, people like James would know that you should just spend your money when you have a chance because the auction can be over at any minute. Too bad they didn’t give any rewards like time with family or letters or anything like they have in the past. Those are always the best rewards.

When they got back to camp, Natalie did nothing but complain about Jason getting another chance at the idol. Um… wasn’t she the one who sent him there?? She is crazy!! If she was smart, she would have sent someone from her own alliance, but I think that was a big mistake if he ends up finding it.

Meanwhile on Exile, Jason was making the most of his chance to find the idol. He also was talking about how he would consider sharing his vicotry in finding the idol with Natalie. And… there he goes. Jason found the hidden immunity idol in a flash with no problems and he considers himself part of a successful alliance with Natalie and the other girls.

Back at camp, the girls were discussing strategies such as convincing Jason that someone else needs to win the immunity challenge. They are hoping to make him feel comfortable and blindside him. Natalie knows that he trusts her and she is going to play him. Now, for a girl that has barely spoken at all the entire season, she is really stepping up her game. Of course, by stepping up her game, she is going to piss off yet another member of the jury, which isn’t very smart, but what do I know?

Day 30. Erik’s birthday. They get a tree mail with a puzzle on it to get prepared for tribal council. In a merciful speech to the camera, Natalie confesses that as evil as women can be, they do not want to send Erik home on his birthday so they will try to get Jason or James out at tribal. I personally think it’s awesome that the women are trying to make it all girl final 5, but as in so many seasons before (Vanuatu specifically comes to mind), the women rarely have the chops the stick to their female alliances all the way through.

At the immunity challenge, Natalie pulled Jason over to the side and told him to let anyone but James win. Wasn’t she supposed to tell him not to win and to let her win? She really screwed that up because now Jason is trying to not let James win. I’m trying to figure out if she is stupid or what. The challenge is one of the typical survivor challenges where four people move on, then the next two, etc. James and Erik moved on to the finals of the competition, both fighting with all of their hearts and minds and bodies. The last part was a challenge we’ve seen before where they get two planks and have to make their way across a rope bridge. Erik was slow but steady while James tried something that didn’t work and fell off. Erik barely beat James out though and won immunity on his birthday. You know he has to feel great after that, but James probably is getting pretty worried at this point.

After falling all over Erik for winning on his birthday, all the girls jumped for joy once the guys were out of ear shot because now their plan to blindside Jason was falling into place. Parvati cleverly dubbed themselves the “Black Widow Brigade” which I think is hilarious. So now, Jason thinks that they are all voting for James. In a very stupid move though, Natalie ransacks Jason’s backpack right in front of James and uncovers the immunity idol. What are they thinking in uncovering their entire plan right in front of one of the guys? Jason came right out and told Natalie later on that he has the idol, so her going through his bag was just stupid and risky. Poor Jason, I kind of feel sorry for him because he’s buying every bit of bullshit that she’s shoveling out at him. It makes me wonder if Natalie’s really a Survivor fan or not because she is just making enemies here, which is dangerous this close to the end. But she admits in a private video that she is being more herself now, which is “stonecold bitch”.

Amanda pulled James over to the side to tell him that Jason was probably going home as long as he doesn’t play his idol. Just to make sure that James’ name isn’t the only other name written down, he said he will write down Parvati’s name. Amanda is really being the smartest player in the game right now and if she can make it to the end, she is sitting pretty because she hasn’t lied to anyone or pissed anyone off, but is sort of sitting back and letting the other people ruin their own chances.

At tribal council, Probst points out that the women are no longer needing male providers and that James is probably the next one on the chopping block. James smartly calls Parvati out in tribal saying that she orchestrated Ozzy’s demise. That isn’t exactly true, though. If I remember correctly, it was Cirie that went to everyone and said “Hey, Ozzy needs to go tonight.” No one seems to realize that though, which is good news for Cirie. Wow, Ozzy really still looked pissed sitting over there on the benches next to Eliza. I feel no real pity for him though, because he did have the idol and it was his choice not to play it.

Once again, the girls convinced another guy NOT to play his idol, so I was certain it was Jason going home. In a very strange twist though, the votes were down to 1 vote Parvati, 3 votes James, 3 votes Jason… one vote left. My heart was racing. Who the hell voted for James besides Jason?? Erik maybe, but who else??? In the end though, it was Jason who was blindsided and went home without playing his idol. I had to rewind the very end a couple of times to get a look at the votes. It looks like Jason, Alexis and Natalie all voted for James. I realize now that they did that just in case Jason were to play his idol, the person with the next highest amount of votes would be going home. They were smart to even it out like that since James cast his vote for Parvati.

Probst told James to have his finger looked at by medical on his way out and it looks like it will only get worse on the next episode. What is it this season with injuries?? Maybe since it is only a few days until the end, they will let him stay anyway. It also looks like next week will be family visits as well, which is always fun.

We are down to just 6 in the quest for the next American Idol, and we all know that we have reached a point where we are getting attached to our favorites.  I dare say that there are a lot of people out there who loved Michael Johns so much they either quit watching all together, or else have been searching aimlessly for another idol to pin their dreams on.  But most people have their favorite safely tucked into the top 6 and are ready to dial like crazy to keep them there.  It’s at this point in the competition where we all are willing to sort of look past the mistakes our favorite makes and are all too quick to point out the misgivings and mistakes of the ones we don’t like so much.  I am no different, so don’t expect this recap to be completely unbiased. 

Having an Andrew Lloyd Webber evening confuses me a bit.  Hasn’t Simon always put people down when they sound too “Broadway”?  I mean, where was Broadway night when Clay Aiken needed it?  I suppose they are trying to bring on big named stars like Webber and to also push the contestants to see who can shine no matter what the assignment.  Tonight should certainly show us who has the vocal chops and who doesn’t.  It’s times like this that I miss Michael Johns… he would have done awesome this week I think.  Oh well, we miss you Michael!

Syesha Mercado – “One Rock and Roll Too Many” – In her video with ALW, I think she kind of talked back to him a bit, which was so off-putting.  I mean, this man is a legend in his art, you just don’t say things like “Well, this is American Idol, not musical theater.”  Ouch.  And, can I just say… what musical is this song even from?  I’ve never heard it and I love musical theater.  Out of all of the amazing songs she could have picked… /sigh.  She looked fantastic though with her tight red dress and her hair in a fancy updoo.  Too bad she couldn’t hit the right notes.  It’s as if she begins to push so that she can belt it out, and she loses the pitch.  Here’s what the judges had to say:  Randy said it was her best performance and she could be a huge broadway star.  Paula says she was in her “happy place”.  Simon said it was sexy.  He thinks it was her strongest performance and that she showed masses of personality.  They all think she is more comfortable in Broadway music.  In my opinion though, she would not get a job on broadway because she can’t sing consistently on pitch. Am I the only that hears that??  Come on people!

Jason Castro – “Memory”  from Cats – In his stage time with Ryan he admitted that he was nervous at this week.  The video was hilarious because ALW said “I never thought I would have heard a man singing Memory with dreadlocks.”  It’s almost perfect that Jason has no idea what the musical is about and has never seen it.  In his performance he sort of lost me on the lower parts, where his voice disappeared a bit.  BUt there is something really sexy and sweet and beautiful about his voice on the higher parts.  I could swoon when I hear it.  I don’t think the judges were swooning though.  Randy thought it was a trainwreck.  “It’s just not your thing dude.”  Paula thought it was interesting because people are used to hearing a power female singing it, and it gave him a chance to show his personality.  Simon thought it came off as a young guy being forced to sing at a wedding.  Haha.  I definitely did not think it was his best night, but did anyone really expect broadway night to be his best? 

Brooke White – “You Must Love Me”  from Evita – Is anyone else tired of the way Brooke purses her lips and furrows her brow and looks so serious and puppy dog?  After this great vid where ALW said she was a natural actress and Brooke was saying that she thinks it is her most powerful moment on the show… she gets up on stage on her stool… and she FORGETS THE WORDS.  How many times has Brooke messed up the beginning of her songs?  All it does is make me nervous for her.  How can someone be a national performing artist when they keep forgetting their words?  You could tell over the rest of the song that she was trying her best to get it together and force us all to feel what she was trying to make us feel.  It just didn’t work though, and it came off too boring.  Randy thought there were parts that were good, and that she connected with her music, but vocally it was tough.  Paula said “You must never stop and start.” It was a moment where I felt like Paula was seriously disappointed in her.  It was like a mother telling her child what not to do.  Simon said that her mess-up at the opening distracted her the rest of the song and made it uncomfortable.  For the first time during judging, Brooke was actually speechless until Ryan asked her why she stopped and started.  She said “I forgot the lyric.  ANd it’s the first time it’s happened on this show.”  Okay, so maybe the first time she forgot the words, but she stopped and restarted a few weeks ago on “Every breath you take.”  I thought I would want Syesha gone this week, but now I’m convinced that Brooke should be the next to go.

David Archuleta – “Think Of Me” from Phantom of the Opera – ALW’s advice to young David… “Open your eyes. and Open your eyes”.  He also called him Little David, hahaha.  He certainly took some risks with this song this week and stepped out of his box for the first time, making taking cues from the big David for once.  He sang this very quintessential broadway female belter song and added an acoustic guitar and some pop elements. Everything was going along great until there was a moment in the middle… did he forget his words too?  You can’t be serious?  He covered well, but I am sure that he did.  Let’s see if the judges caught that or if I’m just insane.  Randy thinks Little David is what this show’s all about and that he’s the one to beat.  Paula thought it was absolutely perfect.  As for Simon, he thought it was a weak performance for him, forgettable, but pleasant and enough to get him through to next week.  No one said anything about him missing the words, but it sure sounded like he was babbling until his mind caught back up with his tongue.  /shrug.

Carly Smithson – “Jesus Christ Superstar” – She had picked out a ballad from Phantom, but ALW told her to that a girl with a tattoo on her arm needed to do a belting song.  He definitely did her a favor there, because she came alive on stage.  She had a great 70’s type dress, she looked amazing, and she was smiling and seemed so happy.  How can Randy say that wasn’t the best performance??  IS he HIGH??  He’s off if he thinks David’s performance was the one to beat?  I am so tired of them being hard on here.  Paula thought it was surprising and fantastic.  SImon said it was a bit shouty, but one of the best performances of the night.  In a very cute stage moment, Ricky Minor handed Carly a shirt that said “SImon Loves Me (This Week)”.  I love Carly’s energy and happiness on stage this week.  She did a great job, and I was so relieved to finally hear something with some great energy to it. 

David Cook – “Music of the Night” from Phantom of the Opera – Wow, so you’re telling me a man is singing a song that man is actually supposed to sing?  Haha.  ALW said it is the most sensual and sexy song he’s ever written.  I will never get the image of him telling David to imagine that he’s a sexy chorus girl out of my head, but moving on… I think it was brilliant for David to just let his voice shine this week.  He didn’t try to do what everyone was expecting and turn it into a pop ballad.  He really let it be a broadway song, and I loved it.  He proved that he has the voice to really pull it off, and that is not an easy song to sing.  He has an amazing vocal range.  Okay, so it might have been a bit sappy, but it was solid and one of the best of the night.  Randy said it was amazing, a “molten hot lava bomb.”  Paula thinks it proved he is well-rounded with a beautiful instrument.  Simon said it isn’t the side of him he likes, but he made the most of the song. 

Overall, I think Carly did the best job this week, followed by David and David.  The bottom 3 should be Syesha, Brooke, and Jason.  I think it’s Brooke’s turn to go this time.  Let me just say that if I had the opportunity to sing Andrew Lloyd Webber on stage, I would pick the song “As if We Never Said Goodbye” from Sunset Boulevard.  If anyone had done that song tonight, they could have really pulled the house down.  I wish someone had done that.  No one really brought the house down tonight, but if anyone came close it was Carly.  I can’t wait to see how America votes this week. 

amicusack2.jpgThe episode opened on Night 20 of Survivor Micronesia.  More than half-way there, and I know they have to be getting close to a merge.  I was very anxious to watch Survivor last night after they ninja-postponed this episode last week.  I was happy to get back into the game.

Right off the bat, Ozzy made me laugh with his view on Tracy calling him the “leader of the tribe.”  He said he just has good ideas and passes them on, but doesn’t see himself as the leader.  Hahahaha!  He basically has been telling people what to do for the past several episodes, he’s always doing the majority of the challenges on his own, and he is the one getting food and keeping the fire going most of the time.  I just think it’s funny that he doesn’t see how he’s already painted a huge target on his back.  Of course, with him holding the immunity idol and also being the biggest individual immunity threat, he might go all the way to the end just because no one will be able to vote him off even if they want to. 

In a very “Welcome to the Jungle” black and white scene, Cirie and Ami kill a bunch of crabs for food.  I have felt all along that Ami is a huge threat, but she has been so hesitant to follow through on her ideas.  She told Ozzy that Tracy tried to get him voted out, but that Ami kept anything crazy from happening.   I think Ozzy could tell that she was lying to him, which doesn’t bode well for Ami.

Back at Airai, they were having tussles with animals also.  Rats were getting close to the camp, so Jason walked over and captured one.  Now, I understand that they are hungry, but there is no way I would eat a rat!  There are seriously millions of fish right there, and they are eating rats.  Nasty.  James, though, and Parvati discussed their bad luck at the Airai beach, where the water is not as calm and there are lots of rocks.  You could tell that they were itching for a merge to come soon so they could go back to Ozzy and Amanda and their alliance.  Realizing they would need 2 more people on their team to even the numbers, Parvati talked to Alexis and Natalie to get them into the race with them.  I wonder why she wasn’t thinking that Cirie, Ami and Eliza were better for their team?  Anyway, I love that Parvati is thinking that once the merge happens and they take it down to six, Ozzy and James can go home, leaving only a female foursome.  How many times have we seen women try to make it all girls in the final four?  It NEVER happens.  Some guy always gets in there and steals the whole show!  Look at Ami’s season.  She was the very best ever at getting the women together, but they let that red-headed guy stay and he ended up winning the million dollars.  I would personally love to see an all female final four, but I don’t have confidence yet that it could happen this season.

In a twist before immunity challenge, each tribe had to pick one member of the opposite tribe to sit out of the challenge and be sent to exile island.  Whoever they chose was guaranteed immunity from that night’s tribal council.  No reward challenge this week?  I am definitely starting to sense a merge soon!  Ozzy was chosen to sit out from Malakal (which is a good and a bad choice.. he might be the biggest threat, but in the overall game, he is the last person they should be guaranteeing immunity to).  Alexis was chosen to sit out from Airai because they thought she might be the best at balancing, since it was going to be a challenge based on who could balance best.  The challenge was all about having to navigate an obstacle course while the opposite team is trying to knock you off.  THe first tribe with 5 points wins.  Parvati sat out from the challenge.  The reward was going to be immunity and pizza and beer delivered to your tribe.  Erik and Jason made it across easily to score the first point for their team.  The girls, Amanda and Eliza fell early, but Erik and Jason went again and scored their second points each.  While Eliza kept falling off, Amanda and Jason got points 3, tribes were neck and neck on points.  For their 4th points, Eliza and Erik scored, with Eliza having a bit of a head start.  Then oh my god, ouch, Erik took a huge dive head first onto the plank and man, that hurt just to watch.  After that, Jason scooted across easily and for the 4th time in a row, Airai won immunity and reward.   I was just happy to see Airai eating beer and pizza instead of the rat they caught!  James continued to amuse me also as he opened beer bottles with his bare teeth.  I have to admit, a huge part of me wants James to win the million.

With Ozzy safe from the vote, it looked like Erik was going to be the next to go for sure. I felt kind of sorry for him because he really gave 100% in that challenge.  Back on Exile Island, Ozzy pretended to search for the idol with Alexis and discovered that someone took the bait of his fake immunity idol.  He screamed with glee as he realized that he duped someone this season, which then makes me feel sorry for poor Jason, who will inevitably pull it out at some tribal council in the future.  Erik, meanwhile, was starting to become resigned to his fate.  In a final swan song, Erik told Cirie and Amanda that Ami has been making shady deals behind their back, begging them to save him and vote Ami out.  This episode was really making me laugh as Ami walked up on his conversation and smilingly said “Are you telling them everything since Day one?”  Erik responded, “Trying to” which made Ami look a little nervous.  She, in turn, pleaded her case to the girls saying that Erik will do whatever he can to stay in the game.  It certainly shows who holds the power in the tribe. 

Devious Ami comes out and talks the girls into sharing her view, turning a potentially hazardous situation to her benefit.  Then, letting her true devil nature come out, she actually went to Erik to say thank you for helping me find a way to get closer to them.  Poor Erik, he had no idea he was up against someone so devious!  She reminds me of a black widow spider or something.  His only choice was to go to Ozzy as he came back from Exile and beg for his life.  The danger here for Ami is that Ozzy was already weary of her since she had been a bit overeager to convince him that she wasn’t a part of their plan.  Now, in a true show of who holds the most power, Amanda and Ozzy talked it out.  Ozzy wanted Ami gone, Amanda wanted Erik out.  Ami really put on a show with her tears at tribal council, begging for her life and promising to stick with them until the end.  In what honestly shocked the hell out of me, the tribe voted Ami out.  I guess that proves that Ozzy is truly the leader of the tribe, whether he wants to admit it or not.  Ami’s big mistake was planning big things with other people and then not following through.  I am so sad to see her go, because I think she has one of the most devious minds ever to play survivor.  She just hesitated on when to make her move this season and it definitely did not pay off for her. 

 My quote of the week?  Erik:  “What can I say? This game’s hell.” 

Next episode:  The Merge!!  Also, Eliza tells Jason, “That’s not the idol!  It’s just a stick!” which may prove to lesson Ozzy’s joy at seeing someone stupidly play a fake idol.  It looks like Amanda and Alexis are going to be fighting for Ozzy’s attention, leading to Amanda pushing for Alexis to go home.  I can’t wait!