It's been an excruciating four weeks of audition episodes on American Idol and thankfully, tonight the show moves in to Hollywood Week (and the ensuing cattiness, tears, mental breakdowns, and forgotten lyrics). Before the drama kicks off, I thought I'd take a look back and share with you who I'll be watching closely during the next round. All five (well, actually six with the Gutierrez Bros.) have serious raw vocal talent and also benefitted by having their "stories" (or at least some sort of schtick) featured on the broadcast. There is plenty still to see, but these are my favorites thus far. Feel free to add your own $0.02 in the comments.
Mark Gutierrez, 28 and Aaron Gutierrez, 27
Hometown: Redlands, CA
Audition city: Los Angeles
You'll remember them because: They're the Latin Jonas Brothers.
Lauren Alaina, 15
Hometown: Rossville, GA
Audition city: Nashville
You'll remember her because: Steven Tyler called her "beyondo cute" after she sang his song "Don't Want to Miss a Thing." That and the tragic rainbow tye-dye dress.
Chris Medina, 26
Hometown: Oak Park, IL
Audition city: Milw00kie
You'll remember him because: He wheeled in his brain-damaged fiance to meet the judges.
Hometown: Idyllwild, CA
Audition city: Austin
You'll remember him because: He carried around a mouth-powered keyboard at auditions called a melodica.
James Durbin, 21
Hometown: Santa Cruz, CA
Audition city: San Francisco
You'll remember him because: He's the dude with Tourette's and Asperger's.