Thursday, February 12, 2009
American Idol: Exit the Ringer, Enter the Freaks
It appears that the jig is up for Season 8 ringer Joanna Pacitti. Within hours of last night's episode in which the Top 36 contestants were revealed, FOX issued a press release stating that it had "been determined that Joanna Pacitti is ineligible to continue in the competition" and that Felicia Barton would be taking her place. Though the network had been extremely upfront about Pacitti's past as a recording artist on A&M/Geffen, they were far more reticent about the her friendship with 19 Entertainment executive Roger Widynowski, who serves as VP of Music and TV Publicity. Once this information was leaked, FOX was forced to disqualify her "to avoid any appearance of impropriety."
Pacitti's rough road in the entertainment industry just got a whole lot worse. While I still believe that she doesn't belong in the competition, this poor girl was just dragged through the ringer of auditioning (or being planted to "audition") for Idol after being dropped by her label, mucking through Hollywood Week (where she seemed to forget more lyrics than she remembered) accepted into the Top 36, and then given the immediate boot once the media had caught on to too much of the story. Ringer or not, Pacitti is a talented girl whom at every turn throughout her 12 years in the business, be it on a Broadway stage or a label marketing meeting, has been told she isn't good enough. I really don't know how many more career blows one person can handle.
Joanna Pacitti may be out, but Nick Mitchell is in... as his alter ego Norman Gentle. Though Simon Cowell clearly disagreed with what has to be some sort of ratings ploy designed to create this year's Sanjaya Malakar, the others officially got behind a guy dressed up in khaki shorts, a lame shirt, a terry-cloth headband and your high school physics teacher's eyeglasses. While I was entertained by Norman's on-his-knees versions of "I am Telling You I'm Not Going" and "Georgia on my Mind," and appreciate Mitchell's audacity in terms of getting his shtick in front of 30 million pairs of eyes, I think his antics will fall embarrassingly flat when we get down to the performance shows. This is still a singing competition, after all.
One thing is for sure-- those freaks over at Vote for the Worst have got to be jizzing in their pants this morning with Norman Gentle, psycho crazypants Tatiana del Toro (above), and weepy emo fag Nathaniel Marshall (o rly, ur druggie momz in jail?) all advancing.
Here's who made it to the Top 36 and will perform in groups of 12 over the next three weeks:
Chicks: Alexis Grace, Allison Iraheta, Ann Marie Boskovich, Arianna Afsar, Casey Carlson, Felicia Barton, Jackie Tohn, Jasmine Murray, Jeanine Vailes, Jessie Langseth, Kendall Beard, Kristen McNamara, Lil Rounds, Megan Corkrey, Mishavonna Henson, Stevie Wright, Tatiana Del Toro and Taylor Vaifanua.
Dudes: Adam Lambert, Alexander Wagner-Trugman, Anoop Desai, Brent Keith, Danny Gokey, Jorge Nunez, Ju'Not Joyner, Kai Kalama, Kris Allen, Matt Breitzke, Matt Giraud, Michael Sarver, Nathaniel Marshall, Nick Mitchell, Ricky Braddy, Scott Macintyre, Stephen Fowler and Von Smith
Among the girls I'm a fan of Jackie Tohn, Megan Corkery and Stevie Wright. With the boys I'm rooting for Anoop-Dogg, Danny Gokey, and the oil rig roughneck guy.
Performances start next week. Who will tank? Who will become an instant iTunes sensation? And what will Ryan Seacrest wear-- the tight graphic T-shirt with a blazer or... the tight graphic T-shirt with the blazer? I'll be waiting with bated breath.